Taking care of your Loved One Is What We Do BEST!

It's no secret, most of us would like to stay in our own home as we age. Yet, sometimes our loved ones just need a little extra help to remain comfortable at home. That's where Always Best Care can help....we are dedicated to exceeding expectations....always

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Home Care In Bandera, TX

Home Care Bandera, TX

They say that your golden years are the best years of your life. For most older Americans, that's how it should be - a time to relax, reflect, and live life in a familiar place. After all, senior citizens in the U.S. have worked tirelessly to build a better economy, serve their communities, and raise families.

However, as seniors grow older, completing daily tasks like showering and enjoying activities such as visiting the historic Great Western Cattle Trail gets harder without someone by their side. Unfortunately, many older Americans aren't able to rely on their adult children for help. The reality in today's world is that family members do not have the skills or time to dedicate to caring for their parents. That's where Always Best Care Senior Services comes in.

Our in-home care services are for people who prefer to stay at home as they grow older but need ongoing care that family or friends cannot provide. More and more older adults prefer to live far away from long-term, institutionalized facilities and closer to the place where they feel most comfortable - their home. Home care in Bandera, TX is a safe, effective way to give your loved ones the care they need when they need it the most.

 In-Home Care Bandera, TX

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The Always Best Care Difference

Since 1996, Always Best Care has provided non-medical in-home care for seniors to help them maintain a healthy lifestyle as they get older. We are proud to have helped more than 25,000 seniors maintain higher levels of dignity and respect. We focus on providing seniors with the highest level of in-home care available so that they may live happily and independently.

Unlike some senior care companies, we genuinely want to be included in our clients' lives. We believe that personalized care is always the better option over a "one size fits all" approach. To make sure our senior clients receive the best care possible, we pair them with compassionate caregivers who understand their unique needs. That way, they may provide care accordingly without compromising their wellbeing.

The Always Best Care difference lies in life's little moments - where compassionate care and trustworthy experience come together to help seniors live a fruitful, healthy life. Whether you are an aging adult that can't quite keep up with life's daily tasks or the child of a senior who needs regular in-home services, Always Best Care is here to help.


“I work for this team and it's a wonderful team , great communication and support for our clients, their family members and our caring team of staff .”

Antoinette G.

“Ken and Bonnie are wonderful people to help care for your loved ones. their staff was so caring to my mother and so nice to my family I highly recommend them to take care of your loved ones. I think there ought to be more than just five stars to give them”

Mark A.

“I am a past client of this provider Ken and Bonnie were wonderful to work with. They were able to provide my mother with care and a very short notice. Their staff was some of the most caring people that I've ever met. Not only were they wonderful to my mother but also to my family. I would highly recommend using them.”

Mark A.

“For those who are searching for qualified caregivers for their loved ones, contact Ken Thomas at Always Best Care Senior Services. Mr. Thomas provides an authentic and professional guiding hand when discussing available services for your precious senior family members. When it is time for a beloved senior to receive assistance, Mr. Thomas understands the importance of providing trustworthy and quality support.”

Melissa C.

“Ken leads his Always Best Care Senior Services Agency with compassion for his clients and their families. He is a local senior care expert and leader in his community. If you are need of assistance in navigating your local senior care options, then do not hesitate to give Ken a call!”

Kelly B.

“Kenneth is kind, patient, experienced and knowledgeable. We are thankful to him for all his efforts and for going above and beyond.”

Chae S.

“Very professional and welcoming people so I would definitely recommend my friends and family to Always Best Care in Boerne.”

Laurie K.

“The owner is so understanding and supportive of how I want my loved ones cared for. He and his staff actually listen to what I would like done for my parents. Very thoughtful, very professional and very caring. It’s such a relief to have help in caring for my loved ones”

Kristen B.

“Kenneth is knowledgeable and trustworthy. I can’t recommend him enough. You’re in good hands with Kenneth.”

Chae S.

“ALWAYS BEST CARE is certainly a warm & caring business owned & operated by Ken Thomas. I certainly would recommend them for you or your loved ones excellent care.”

Shirley S.

“I will be forever grateful for the love you showered upon us and my grandmother”

Jill &.

What is Non-Medical Senior Care in Bandera, TX?


Home is where the heart is. While that saying can sound a tad cliche, it is especially true for many seniors living in America. When given a choice, older adults most often prefer to grow older at home. An AARP study found that three out of four adults over the age of 50 want to stay in their homes and communities as they age.


When you begin to think about why, it makes sense. Home offers a sense of security, comfort, and familiarity.


The truth is, as we age, we begin to rely on others for help. When a family is too busy or lives too far away to fulfill this role, in-home senior care is often the best solution. Home care services allow seniors to enjoy personal independence while also receiving trustworthy assistance from a trained caregiver.


At Always Best Care, we offer a comprehensive range of home care services to help seniors stay healthy while they get the help they need to remain independent. As your senior loved one gets older, giving them the gift of senior care is one of the best ways to show your love, even if you live far away.

 Senior Care Bandera, TX

Types of Elderly Care in Bandera, TX

To give our senior clients the best care possible, we offer a full spectrum of in-home care services:

Personal Care

Personal Care Services

If your senior loved one has specific care needs, our personal care services are a great choice to consider. Personal care includes the standard caregiving duties associated with companion care and includes help with tasks such as dressing and grooming. Personal care can also help individuals with chronic conditions like diabetes.

Common personal care services include assistance with:

  • Eating
  • Mobility Issues
  • Incontinence
  • Bathing
  • Dressing
  • Grooming

Respite Care Bandera, TX
Home Helper

Home Helper Services

Sometimes, seniors need helpful reminders to maintain a high quality of life at home. If you or your senior has trouble with everyday tasks like cooking, our home helper services will be very beneficial.

Common home helper care services include assistance with:

  • Medication Reminders
  • Meal Preparation
  • Pet Care
  • Prescription Refills
  • Morning Wake-Up
  • Walking
  • Reading
 Caregivers Bandera, TX
Companionship Services

Companionship Services

Using this kind of care is a fantastic way to make life easier for you or your senior loved one. At Always Best Care, our talented caregivers often fill the role of a companion for seniors. That way, older adults can enjoy their favorite local activities, such as visiting Bandera City Park with friends while also receiving the care they need daily or weekly.

Common companionship services include:

  • Grocery Shopping
  • Transportation to Appointments
  • Nutritional Assistance
  • Conversation
  • Planning Outings
  • Completing Errands
  • Transportation to Community
  • Events and Social Outings
Home Care Bandera, TX
Respite Care

Respite Care Services

According to AARP, more than 53 million adults living in the U.S. provide care to someone over 50 years old. Unfortunately, these caregivers experience stress, exhaustion, and even depression. Our respite care services help family caregivers address urgent obligations, spend time with their children, and enjoy nearby activities. Perhaps more importantly, respite care gives family members time to recharge and regroup. Taking personal time to de-stress reduces the risk of caregiver burnout. So, if you've always wanted to eat at the local Tj's @ The Old Forge or visit Historic Bandera County Jail,, don't feel bad. Doing so is great for both you and your loved one.

At the end of the day, our goal is to become a valuable part of your senior's daily routine. That way, we may help give them the highest quality of life possible. We know that staying at home is important for your loved one, and we are here to help make sure that is possible.

If you have been on the fence about non-medical home care, there has never been a better time than now to give your senior the care, assistance, and companionship they deserve.

 In-Home Care Bandera, TX

Benefits of Home Care in Bandera, TX

Always Best Care in-home services are for older adults who prefer to stay at home but need ongoing care that friends and family cannot provide. In-home care is a safe, effective way for seniors to age gracefully in a familiar place and live independent, non-institutionalized lives. The benefits of non-medical home care are numerous. Here are just a few reasons to consider senior care services from Always Best Care:

Always Best Care offers a full array of care options for patients at all levels of health. With our trusted elderly care services, your loved one will receive the level of care necessary for them to enjoy the highest possible quality of life.

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Aging in Place: The Preferred Choice for Most Seniors

While it's true that some seniors have complicated medical needs that prevent them from staying at home, aging in place is often the best arrangement for seniors and their families. With a trusted caregiver, seniors have the opportunity to live with a sense of dignity and do so as they see fit - something that is unavailable to many older people today.

In-home care makes it possible for millions of seniors to age in place every year. Rather than moving to a strange nursing home, seniors have the chance to stay at home where they feel the happiest and most comfortable.

Here are just a few of the reasons why older men and women prefer to age at home:

How much does a senior's home truly mean to them?

A study published by the American Society on Aging found that more than half of seniors say their home's emotional value means more than how much their home is worth in monetary value. It stands to reason, then, that a senior's home is where they want to grow old.

With the help of elderly care in Bandera, TX, seniors don't have to age in a sterilized care facility. Instead, they can age gracefully in the place they want to be most: their home. In contrast, seniors who move to a long-term care facility must adapt to new environments, new people, and new systems that the facility implements. At this stage in life, this kind of drastic change can be more harmful than helpful.

Institutional care facilities like nursing homes often put large groups of people together to live in one location. On any given day, dozens of staff members and caregivers run in and out of these facilities. Being around so many new people in a relatively small living environment can be dangerous for a seniors' health and wellbeing. When you consider that thousands of seniors passed away in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, opting for in-home care is often a safer, healthier choice for seniors.

Aging in place has been shown to improve seniors' quality of life, which helps boost physical health and also helps insulate them from viral and bacterial risks found in elderly living facilities.

For many seniors, the ability to live independently with assistance from a caregiver is a priceless option. With in-home care, seniors experience a higher level of independence and freedom - much more so than in other settings like a nursing home. When a senior has the chance to age in place, they get to live life on their own terms, inside the house that they helped make into a home. More independence means more control over their personal lives, too, which leads to increased levels of fulfillment, happiness, and personal gratification. Over time, these positive feelings can manifest into a healthier, longer life.

More independence, a healthier life, and increased comfort are only a few benefits of aging in place. You have to take into consideration the role of cost and convenience. Simply put, it's usually easier and more affordable to help seniors age in place than it is to move them into an institutional care facility. According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, seniors who age in the comfort of their homes can save thousands of dollars per month.

In-home care services from Always Best Care, for instance, are often less expensive than long-term solutions, which can cost upwards of six figures per year. To make matters worse, many residential care facilities are reluctant to accept long-term care insurance and other types of payment assistance.

With Always Best Care's home care services, seniors and their families have a greater level of control over their care plans. In-home care gives seniors the chance to form a bond with a trusted caregiver and also receive unmatched care that is catered to their needs. In long-term care facilities, seniors and their loved ones have much less control over their care plan and have less of a say in who provides their care.

 Elderly Care Bandera, TX

Affordable Care

In-home care is a valuable resource that empowers seniors to age in place on their own terms. However, a big concern for many families and their loved ones is how much in-home care costs. If you're worried that in-home care is too expensive, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that it is one of the most affordable senior care arrangements available.

Typically, hiring an Always Best Care in-home caregiver for a few hours a week is more affordable than sending your loved one to a long-term care facility. This is true even for seniors with more complex care needs.

At Always Best Care, we will work closely with you and your family to develop a Care Plan that not only meets your care needs, but your budget requirements, too. Once we discover the level of care that you or your senior need, we develop an in-home care plan that you can afford.

In addition to our flexible care options, families should also consider the following resources to help offset potential home care costs:

If your loved one qualifies, Medicaid may help reduce in-home care costs. Review your TX's Medicaid program laws and benefits, and make sure your senior's financial and medical needs meet Medicaid eligibility requirements.
Attendance and aid benefits through military service can cover a portion of the costs associated with in-home care for veterans and their spouses.
Many senior care services like in-home care are included in long-term care insurance options. Research different long-term care solutions to find a plan that provides coverage for senior care.
Home care can be included as part of a senior's private insurance plan. Read over your loved one's insurance policy carefully or speak with their insurance provider to determine if in-home care is covered.
Depending on the life insurance plan, you may be able to apply your policy toward long-term care. You may be able to use long-term-care coverage to help pay for in-home elderly care.
 Senior Care Bandera, TX

Compassionate Care. Trusted Caregivers.

When you or your senior loved one needs assistance managing daily tasks at home, finding a qualified caregiver can be challenging. It takes a special kind of person to provide reliable care for your senior loved one. However, a caregiver's role involves more than meal preparation and medication reminders. Many seniors rely on their caregivers for companionship, too.

Our companion care services give seniors the chance to socialize in a safe environment and engage in activities at home. These important efforts boost morale and provide much-needed relief from repetitive daily routines. A one-on-one, engaging conversation can sharpen seniors' minds and give them something in which to be excited.

At Always Best Care, we only hire care providers that we would trust to care for our own loved ones. Our senior caregivers in Bandera, TX understand how important it is to listen and communicate with their seniors. A seemingly small interaction, like a short hug goodbye, can make a major difference in a senior's day. Instead of battling against feelings of isolation, seniors begin to look forward to seeing their caregiver each week.

Understanding the nuances of senior care is just one of the reasons why our care providers are so great at their job.

Unlike some senior care companies, our caregivers must undergo extensive training before they work for Always Best Care. In addition, our caregivers receive ongoing training throughout the year. This training ensures that their standard of care matches up to the high standards we've come to expect. During this training, they will brush up on their communication skills, safety awareness, and symptom spotting. That way, your loved one receives the highest level of non-medical home care from day one.

Assisted Living Referral Services

While it's true that many seniors prefer to age at home, sometimes in-home care isn't the best fit. For those seniors and their families, choosing an assisted living facility makes more sense. Unfortunately, finding the optimal care facility is easier said than done in today's day and age. That's when Always Best Care's assisted living referral services begin to make a lot of sense.

Assisted living is a form of housing intended for seniors who require varying degrees of medical and personal attention. Accommodations may include single rooms, apartments, or shared living arrangements. Assisted living communities are typically designed to resemble a home-like environment and are physically constructed to encourage the independence of residents.

Respite Care Bandera, TX

At assisted living communities, seniors receive help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating. They may also benefit from coordination of services with outside healthcare providers, and monitoring of resident activities to ensure their health, safety, and well-being. Caregivers who work at assisted living communities can also provide medication administration and personal care services for older adults.

Other services offered within assisted living communities can include some or all of the following:

  • Housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Recreational Activities
  • Social Outings
  • Emergency Medical Response
  • Medication Monitoring
  • Family Visitation
  • Personal Care
 Caregivers Bandera, TX

At Always Best Care, our representatives can match your senior's emotional, physical, and financial needs with viable assisted living communities nearby. Results are based on comparative data, so you can select the best choice for you or your loved one.

Always Best Care works closely with local senior living communities to gain valuable knowledge that we then use to help seniors and their loved ones make informed decisions. This information can include basic care and rent, resident availability, and services provided. Because Always Best Care is compensated by these communities, we provide senior living referral services at no extra cost to you.

Some of the most popular assisted living communities to consider in our area include the following:

  • Cedar Creek Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
  • Bandera Nursing & Rehabilitation
  • River Hills Care Center
  • Silver Sage
  • Assisted living facilities dallas
Home Care Bandera, TX

For many seniors, moving into a senior living community revolves around how and when they want to make a transition to more involved care. Some seniors are more proactive about transitioning to independent living. Others choose to remain home until their care needs or other requirements are satisfied. Remember - our staff is here to help. Contact our office today to learn more about assisted living communities and how we can find a facility that exceeds your expectations.

 In-Home Care Bandera, TX

Taking the First Step with Always Best Care

The first step in getting quality in-home care starts with a personal consultation with an experienced Always Best Care Care Coordinator. This initial consultation is crucial for our team to learn more about you or your elderly loved one to discover the level of care required. Topics of this consultation typically include:

A discussion of your needs and how our trained caregivers can offer assistance in the most effective way


A draft of your care plan, which includes highly detailed notes and a framework for the care that you or your senior will receive


Discuss payment options and help coordinate billing with your insurance provider


Our caregivers are trained to spot changes that clients exhibit, like mental and physical decline. As your trusted senior care company, we will constantly assess and update your Care Plan to meet any new emotional, intellectual, physical, and emotional needs.

If you have never considered in-home care before, we understand that you and your family may have concerns about your Care Plan and its Care Coordinator. To help give you peace of mind, know that every team member and caregiver must undergo comprehensive training before being assigned to a Care Plan.

At the end of the day, we only hire the best of the best at Always Best Care. Whether you need home care in Bandera, TX 24-hours a day or only need a respite for a couple of hours, we are here to serve you.

When you're ready, we encourage you to contact your local Always Best Care representative to set up a Care Consultation. Our Care Coordinators would be happy to meet with you in person to get to know you better, discuss your needs, and help put together a personalized Care Plan specific to your needs.

 Elderly Care Bandera, TX

Latest News in Bandera, TX

Navy veteran pleads for Bandera community's help to locate service dogs that he suspects someone stole

John Meaney says Beau and Malley have been vital in improving his mental well-being and assisting him with everyday tasks.More VideosBANDERA, Texas — A U.S. Navy veteran in Bandera is calling on the community to be on the lookout for his two dogs. He says he suspects they were sto...

John Meaney says Beau and Malley have been vital in improving his mental well-being and assisting him with everyday tasks.

More Videos

BANDERA, Texas — A U.S. Navy veteran in Bandera is calling on the community to be on the lookout for his two dogs. He says he suspects they were stolen last month.

John Meaney depends on the help he gets from his furry companions, Beau and Malley. Beau, a German Shepherd, is a certified service dog, while Malley, a Belgian Malinois, is a pure ball of comfort.

“Beau helps me out, or he did. Carrying groceries and stuff, he’d open the door for me and turn around and close it. Malley, she’s a trip. She was just a lover,” Meaney said.

But now, this Bandera man is on a desperate mission to bring them home. He suspects Beau and Malley escaped through a hole in the fence that lines his property off the 700 block of Optimist Way in Bandera.

“Saturday morning, March 2, and every day is a normal day, and I let them outside to go do their business and they never came back,” Meaney said.

With the help of friends and community members, he’s spread the word in person and online about his dogs’ disappearance. Meaney has followed up on numerous apparent sightings but with no success of getting any closer to locating Beau and Malley.

“I got great friends out there that were calling me and tipping me every chance they got, everything they heard of saw,” Meaney said.

While he’s waiting for answers, Meaney’s hanging out with his newest buddy Frank, whom he adopted after Beau and Malley disappeared.

“Come here, puppy. Franko, he’s a good boy. Frank, Frank really helps.”

Meaney is offering a $500 reward for information leading to finding and returning his dogs.

“You just gotta have something to take care of, you gotta have something to love. That’s why we’re here, I think, and for somebody to take that, it’s just evil.”

The Saltiest Cowboys In All of Bandera

So many rodeo champions hail from Bandera County that the monument on the courthouse lawn has no more room for names on its bronze plaque. A small town about an hour’s drive northwest of San Antonio, Bandera beckons folks with other sorts of cowboy dreams too. It inspired ...

So many rodeo champions hail from Bandera County that the monument on the courthouse lawn has no more room for names on its bronze plaque. A small town about an hour’s drive northwest of San Antonio, Bandera beckons folks with other sorts of cowboy dreams too. It inspired Robert Earl Keen, who moved here in the late eighties after a disappointing stint in Nashville, to start writing songs again. Tourists come for the staged gunfights behind the visitors center on Saturday afternoons. And just down Main Street from the legendary Arkey Blue’s Silver Dollar honky-tonk, a couple has built a business by giving the cowboy treatment to a simple ingredient.

Daniel and Andrew Almand launched Texas Salt Co. three years ago after creating a briny blend to give to friends and family at the holidays, continuing a tradition of homemade presents the two men, who married in 2013, began early in their relationship. They cold-smoked sea salt flakes for a week over pecan wood in a smoker they built themselves and then infused them with garlic and fresh rosemary. They called their creation Cowboy Salt because it adds a campfire-esque finish to beef, chicken, and other meats. Experiments with new flavor combinations soon followed.

Rarely seen these days without their boots and hats, the Almands opened their first storefront in November 2022 after moving to Bandera from Belton, south of Waco. They now sell more than fifty kinds of sea salts—including their Bourbon Barrel blend and flakes seasoned with ingredientssuch as saffron, scorpion pepper, and white truffle—as well as about two dozen varieties of peppercorns. The Cowboy Salt by far remains their best-seller, so they work to keep pace with the demand. “If I produced two tons of it, I could sell two tons of it,” Andrew says.

The store draws both locals and tourists, who can sample and smell the different salts and peppers. Some shoppers come looking for gifts for the men in their lives—“Guys love to smoke things,” Daniel says. But the Almands also have tapped into a wider trend, with more home cooks reaching for boutique “finishing” salts to enhance the flavor of a dish.

In the next few years, they plan to open more pop-and-pop shops around Texas. For now, they’ll continue to make their salts and peppers in their adopted hometown. This month they’re moving their manufacturing and retail operations into a 2,100-square-foot building across from another beloved Bandera watering hole—the 11th Street Cowboy Bar, where horses are often parked next to motorcycles. It’s a town for all seasonings.

Finishing School

Beer Salt

Order a beer at a bar in Bandera, and you might be asked if you’d like it “dressed.” In other words: Do you want salt on the rim? Texas Salt Co.’s beer salts, which come in flavors including plain, jalapeño, and sriracha, zest up even the most common ales. They also give life to micheladas and Mexican martinis. Simply run a lime around the edge of a glass and mash the rim onto a plate scattered with the salt of your choice. Andrew and Daniel Almand also sell cocktail salts, including Triple Heat, a “careful blend” of ground ghost peppers, habaneros, and jalapeños.

Cowboy Bread Dip

Inspired by the dipping oil at the Carrabba’s Italian Grill chain, the Cowboy Bread Dip is a blend of pecan-smoked salt and seasonings including basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, sun-dried tomatoes, and thyme. Add a tablespoon to a quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil, let sit for thirty minutes, then serve with warm bread.

Cowboy Salt

Give steaks that smoked flavor by drizzling the meat with olive oil, seasoning generously with the Cowboy Salt and Cowboy Peppercorn blends, and letting it reach room temperature for thirty minutes. For medium-rare steaks, the Almands recommend cooking cuts that are an inch thick or more in a medium-hot skillet or on the grill for four and a half minutes on one side and four on the other. Cover with foil and let rest for five minutes.

This article originally appeared in the March 2024 issue of Texas Monthly. Subscribe today.

Bandera landowners sue developer over proposed construction of solar farm

A group of Bandera County landowners are suing a major solar power and battery developer over its plan to build a solar farm, saying they are concerned it could cause environmental harm and reduce their property values.Pine Gate Renewables wants to build the 123-megawatt solar farm on privately owned land near Montague Lake on both sides of FM 3240, and the company says it could power 22,800 homes. But roughly a dozen neighbors are worried...

A group of Bandera County landowners are suing a major solar power and battery developer over its plan to build a solar farm, saying they are concerned it could cause environmental harm and reduce their property values.

Pine Gate Renewables wants to build the 123-megawatt solar farm on privately owned land near Montague Lake on both sides of FM 3240, and the company says it could power 22,800 homes. But roughly a dozen neighbors are worried it could create “enormously detrimental environmental issues,” according to the lawsuit filed in late December.

“We don’t want them to break ground until we know that they’re protecting the environment,” said Jennifer Rosenblatt, the attorney representing the landowners. “We’re not telling you you can’t build. We’re just telling you you’ve got to do it right.”

RELATED: Bandera — the Hill Country town that showed true grit and said no to corporate welfare

Removing native vegetation and soil erosion resulting from regrading properties could increase runoff and cause chemicals to flow into nearby wells, creeks and aquifers, polluting the water and flooding their properties, the suit states. The plaintiffs also are concerned about the risk of fire in the rural county and construction interfering with some of their businesses, which include a livestock operation, a exotic animal farm and a bed-and-breakfast.

Pine Gate Renewables is based in Asheville, N.C. Its solar farm has been in the works for over a year, at least.

Preconstruction work is underway, and little information has been shared with the landowners, which is what prompted them to sue, Rosenblatt said. They want Pine Gate to outline plans for managing water and vegetation, hazardous waste and chemicals, erosion control and fire response, and to commission a geotechnical engineering report on the karst terrain in the area.

“Just show us that you’re doing what you’re supposed to do,” Rosenblatt said.

The landowners are seeking more than $1 million in damages. A judge signed a temporary restraining order, and a hearing on a temporary injunction is scheduled this week.

“Pine Gate Renewables is aware of the complaint related to Rio Lago Solar and remains committed to the project’s development and construction. However, the company does not discuss ongoing legal matters,” a spokesperson said.

The company was founded in 2016 and operates more than 100 solar facilities nationwide, according to its website. It has more than 30 gigawatts of projects in development, including 40 projects in Texas representing 8,260 megawatts.

Pine Gate says on its website that the Bandera solar farm represents a $150 million investment, with construction expected to begin this year and be completed next year.

RELATED: Texas adds record amount of battery storage to grid — and more is on the way

In 2022, an affiliate of the company sought property tax breaks from Bandera Independent School District through a state program known as Chapter 313. The school board rejected its application.

It’s unclear exactly how many acres the solar farm would occupy. The suit says it would comprise about 1,825 acres across multiple properties, while it’s previously been described in news reports as encompassing 1,000 acres. A portion will be leased from a pair of property owners, who are named as defendants in the suit. Pine Gate is also under contract to buy land on which it plans to build a substation, according to the complaint.

The solar panels will be surrounded by a wildlife-friendly fence and vegetative buffer, with a 50-foot setback from the property line. Pine Gate says on its website that it “works with landowners and local groups to preserve and protect the land, while maintaining the natural look and feel of the area.” The solar farm will not produce harmful emissions, and the panels won’t emit noise.

The company also states that it “believes, and numerous studies indicate, that solar farms do not have a direct negative impact on the values of adjacent homes or properties.”

The solar farm would be in the service area of Bandera Electric Cooperative Inc., a distribution service and transmission service provider.

Under Texas law, the cooperative must interconnect facilities with new power sources, said John Padalino, its general counsel and chief administrative officer. Pine Gate requested that its proposed facility be connected with the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, region, Padalino said. He directed questions about the project to Pine Gate.

As demand for power in Texas rises, more solar projects are being built. Solar power and battery storage facilities make up the largest percentage of power projects in ERCOT’s queue awaiting approval to be added to the grid.

Viral TikTok brings national attention to 'Cowboy Capital of the World'

Actors playing a frustrated landowner and the town sheriff are seen in the video having a heated and hilarious exchange.More VideosSAN ANTONIO — A hilarious TikTok video being shared widely is bringing national attention to the Cowboy Capital of the World, Bandera, Texas.Actors playing a frustrated landowner and the town sheriff are seen in the video having a heated an...

Actors playing a frustrated landowner and the town sheriff are seen in the video having a heated and hilarious exchange.

More Videos

SAN ANTONIO — A hilarious TikTok video being shared widely is bringing national attention to the Cowboy Capital of the World, Bandera, Texas.

Actors playing a frustrated landowner and the town sheriff are seen in the video having a heated and humorous exchange in the middle of the busy Old Spanish Trail Restaurant (or O.S.T). They seem to be arguing over cattle being moved onto the landowner's property.

Things get even more tense when the waitress tells them to take their dispute outside. She uses a whip to chase them out of the restaurant, while the patrons errupt in applause.

The actors did such a realistic job acting out the skit that TikTok users were stumped as to whether this was a real argument or not. Others famliar with the town jumped in to clarify that it was definitely a skit.

At last check, the video, posted by TikTok user @roughstockmom had more than 1.3 million views, 46,000 comments and 1,500 shares.

See the full TikTok below:


#banderatexas #ostrestaurant #texas #bandera

? original sound - Mindi Hauck

The actors are part of the group Western Heritage Gunfighters, who perform regularly in different places in Bandera. The performance adds even more charm to the town known as the Cowboy Capital of the World for its Old West culture and dude ranches.

The restaurant featured in the video, O.S.T, has been serving customers since 1921 and is the oldest continuously operated restaurant in Bandera County. It's been featured in several national and state publications for its chicken-fried steak and Tex-Mex food. It also has a John Wayne Room and see many pictures of “Duke” and other cowboys and celebrities.

Landowners claim solar company is breaking court order to halt construction of Bandera solar farm

On Feb. 7, a Bandera judge signed a temporary injunction preventing construction from moving forward without regulatory plans in placeBANDERA COUNTY, Texas – UPDATE 4/3/24: Almost a month after a Bandera judge signed a temporary injunction preventing construction on a large solar project, he’s now ruling that order must be followed.According to court records, on March 27, 2024, Judge Pat Maguire heard a motion from the landowners’ council for contempt and a request for emergency relie...

On Feb. 7, a Bandera judge signed a temporary injunction preventing construction from moving forward without regulatory plans in place

BANDERA COUNTY, TexasUPDATE 4/3/24: Almost a month after a Bandera judge signed a temporary injunction preventing construction on a large solar project, he’s now ruling that order must be followed.

According to court records, on March 27, 2024, Judge Pat Maguire heard a motion from the landowners’ council for contempt and a request for emergency relief.

In his ruling, Maguire ordered Pine Gate Renewables, LLC and Rio Lago Solar, LLC to be sanctioned $10,000. However, that payment will not be required if a list of conditions is met.

If those conditions aren’t met, the defendants listed in the lawsuit will be required to pay the $10,000 sanctions immediately to the plaintiffs.

The court found that we had not fully complied with our stormwater management plan for the project. These incidents were inadvertent and, as reflected in the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s report on its inspection of the site, limited and inconsequential. As envisioned by our stormwater management plan, these types of incidents can occur in the course of any large development project, which is why we have best management practices in place to protect water quality. We take compliance seriously and will adhere with the court’s directive that we redouble our efforts to ensure that such incidents do not occur in the future. We welcome oversight of our work on the site by Plaintiff’s engineer, as required by the court’s order.

Kristen McKenzie, Pine Gate Renewables

A fight is continuing in Bandera County over the construction of a solar farm.

Pine Gate Renewables, a North Carolina-based company, is leasing thousands of acres to build over a million solar panels.

According to its website, the project will be called Rio Lago Solar.

Court battle

In January, the landowners surrounding the Rio Lago Solar Project site met before 198th District Court Judge Pat Maguire with their lawyers to argue why the proposed project would harm their properties.

The prosecution reiterated that their clients did not want the project stopped. However, they wanted assurance that proper protocols would be followed so the community wouldn’t suffer.

The defense argued a temporary injunction and the existing temporary restraining order were unnecessary because the proposed project was legal.

Each side brought in its own set of experts.

On Feb. 7, Judge Maguire signed a temporary injunction, halting the construction of the solar farm until certain parameters are met by Pine Gate Renewables.

The following are those parameters:

Both parties will need to meet for mediation before May 1, 2024, and a jury trial is currently set for October 22, 2024, at 9 a.m., according to court records.

Landowners vs solar company

“Day one, we had trespassing, we had property damage. And now we’re building a secondary road against a court order, in my opinion. And so, we’re starting off on the wrong foot,” said Andrew Boger, a landowner named in the court records.

Despite the temporary injunction explicitly preventing Pine Gate Renewables from preparing land for its proposed solar project, our KSAT drone caught movement on the property.

“There’s a road being built this morning,” Boger said.

Kristen McKenzie, the director of government and external affairs for Pine Gate Renewables, sent a statement in response to work happening on the land they’re leasing.

“Pine Gate has yet to remove any trees on the property. Pre-construction work has begun on the project in compliance with the court order – this work includes staging equipment and surveying for the installation of silt fencing. Project-specific timbering is expected to begin within the week after best management practices (BMPs) are installed as part of the overall timbering plan. The road-grading and associated timbering activity that has been reported is unrelated to the Rio Lago Solar Project and is not being performed by or on behalf of Pine Gate or the Rio Lago Solar Project.”

Kristen McKenzie, Pine Gate Renewables

Boger and other neighbors have been following the movement on the property closely, often taking videos of equipment on the move and calling local law enforcement to respond to what they allege is a blatant disregard for a court order.

Boger believes the solar company is not being honest or transparent about what its plans are for the thousands of acres of land its leasing and for the construction of over a million solar panels.

“I think a solid set of engineering plans just presented to the agencies would have made this all go away,” he said.

Sandra Nevels’ property is surrounded by the land destined to be used for the solar project on three sides. She’s also one of the plaintiffs listed in the suit alongside Boger.

The day the temporary injunction was signed by the judge, Nevels recorded a video of the company bringing heavy machinery onto the property.

“Felt like they weren’t, you know, abiding by the law. So what makes me think that they’re going to do it right?” Nevels questioned.

The Bandera County Sheriff’s Office was called to the property that day.

According to law enforcement records, landowner Jeff Nanos did not want the company using his gate or his easement road for access to the property.

Nanos filed a report for trespassing. In it, he states the use of the easement road is exclusively permitted outside of his use for a nearby landowner, and the solar company did not have permission to access it.

McKenzie sent a statement regarding the report.

“The company has not accessed public or private land without permission. The use of the road was done with the easement holder’s approval.”

Kristen McKenzie, Pine Gate Renewables

Nevels says she believes the equipment was brought to the land because the company is doing work that it is not allowed to do yet, per the court’s latest ruling.

“That equipment costs money to have it just sitting there. It was crazy,” Nevels said.

KSAT 12 News stopped by the Bandera County Engineer, Permits, and Inspections Department. It confirmed a development permit was issued to Pine Gate Renewables for the Rio Lago Solar Project site.

County engineer Dieter Warner didn’t want to go on camera but sat down to speak about the permitting process.

Warner gave us a copy of what the permit application looks like. He explained not much can be done on his end to stop the issuance if the company meets the permitting requirements.

KSAT Investigates reporter Leigh Waldman asked Warner if he had been presented with any construction or water runoff prevention plans to apply for the permits.

“No, but I’ve been asking for it for almost a year,” Warner said. He went on to explain that he’s seen a preliminary plan, but not a final plan.

Warner also explained that the company will need to follow state and federal requirements throughout the building process in order to ensure it is done properly.

When asked about the permit, McKenzie sent a statement.

“The permit was obtained to comply with local requirements. The company has fulfilled the District Court of Bandera County’s requirements, and pre-construction of the Rio Lago Solar Project has begun in compliance with the Court Order.”

Kristen McKenzie, Pine Gate Renewables

“I’m worried for our community that they’re just going to walk over us,” Nevels said.

“I believe now this (is) becoming a much larger issue than just the solar field in Bandera. I think it’s becoming a county issue for the counties of Texas,” Boger said.

Requests by KSAT for an interview with Pine Gate Renewables have been ignored.

As our crew was leaving the property next to the Rio Lago Solar site, the Bandera County Sheriff’s Office was called out because the people on the Pine Gate property were upset about our drone flying overhead.

“Good job there, lady,” one man said as we recorded video driving away.

Flying drones over property is not illegal or prohibited per the Federal Aviation Administration regulations.

The lawyer representing the landowners filed a motion for Pine Gate Renewables and its attorneys to be held in contempt of court for failure to comply with the temporary injunction. They’re asking the court to step in and issue additional orders.

At this point, the judge has called for an emergency hearing in March.

The lawyer also filed an emergency motion to enforce the temporary injunction with the court on Feb. 22.

Court records allege the defense, Pine Gate Renewables, “blatantly failed and refused to comply” with the temporary injunction and is asking the court to issue an emergency order enjoining the defendants from any further construction or activities on the property.

The motion continues asking that a third-party compliance officer be appointed and for the defense to allow the plaintiff’s expert, a civil engineer, to have access to the leased property.

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