San Benito is the home of Conjunto (accordion-style, Latin-based) music and has a rich heritage with legends including Narciso Martinez. the father of conjunto music. The legendary Freddie Fender is San Benito's Grammy award-winning native son.
The San Benito community has embarked upon the development of the Cultural Heritage Museum Project to publicly feature the works of the area's musical talents, combined with local traditions. The project will incorporate existing music festivals, art exhibits, educational ventures and recognition ceremonies for public benefit. In 2012, the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration awarded the City a $1,000,000.00 grant for the project. Substantial completion was accomplished the fall of 2017.
The Cultural Heritage Museum Project will create a cultural district to showcase the various aspects of the history of San Benito. The hub of the cultural district will evolve around the San Benito Plaza (also known as Plaza de San Benito), which includes the newly completed San Benito Cultural Heritage Museum, the historic old public library, and the community building. This cultural district will also incorporate the Azteca building, which will be renovated to ultimately re-open the rooftop patio for intimate musical performances overlooking the resaca.
The community hosts several events to attend throughout the year:
Texas Independence Day Celebration - This annual event is coordinated by THICA (Texas Heritage & Independence Celebration Association). The event held in March, and showcases the battles that were fought to achieve independence from Mexico. (www.happybirthdaytexas.com)
Cinco de Mayo Festival - This annual event is held in May to celebrate Mexico's victory over France in 1862.
Hog Waddle Country Concert & Cook-off - This annual event is held in May and was established to pay homage to a whimsical part of the City's pioneering history. The City sponsored event includes music, a sanctioned barbecue cook-off featuring pork dishes, arts and crafts vendors, and activities for the whole family.
ResacaFest - Celebrate the 4th of July along the Resaca at Heavin Memorial Park. The annual celebration is sponsored by the City and offers food, entertainment, fireworks, and free admission.
National Night Out - San Benito Police Department hosts the annual National Night Out the first Tuesday in October. Dozens of law enforcement organizations and businesses support the event with games, dancing, kid friendly carnival rides and bounce houses, and tons of give-a-ways.
South Texas Music Festival (formerly known as Resaca City Music Festival) - This annual music event is held in October and was established to honor and promote the evolution of Conjunto music and the various genres that have enhanced its identity, or in turn, have been inspired by Conjunto's traditional sounds. The City sponsored event features music, food, arts and crafts, and activities for the whole family.
Tent or Treat - This fun family event is hosted by the City and offers a safe environment for trick or treating at Heavin Memorial Park and Resaca Trail. Kid friendly costumes are encouraged, while participating tents are decorated in the spirit of Halloween.
Community Christmas - The annual event held in December showcases the talents of the San Benito elementary, middle school, and high school students. This City sponsored event is held at the Amphitheater at Heavin Memorial Park and is free of charge for the public.
Lighted Christmas parade - The annual event sponsored by the City of San Benito is held in December and celebrates the Christmas season.
For more information regarding any of the events listed above, please call 956-361-3800.
City of San Benito Parks & Recreation coordinates many events throughout the year for children and adults to participate in. Previous events include:
Summer movies in the park
Youth NFL flag football
Youth NFL cheerleading
Adult flag football
City maintained destinations include:
2.75 mile walking trail around the Resaca at Heavin Memorial Park
Wetlands bird watching and nature area located on Line 20 Road
Veterans Memorial located at S. Sam Houston Blvd & E Rowson St on the site of the old train depot
Numerous public parks that are open from 5:00 am - 11:00 pm
Service and Social Organizations located in San Benito include:
The Rio Grande Valley, as a whole, offers family friendly activities for all seasons.
Gladys Porter Zoo (Brownsville)
RGV Premium Outlets, featuring more than 140 designer outlet stores (Mercedes)
Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show & Rodeo (Mercedes)
WesMer Drive-In, a restored single screen drive-in theater offering double features including new releases (Mercedes)
Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle, designated a National Shrine in 1998 and a minor Basilica in 1999 (San Juan)
Nature centers and preserves
Hike and bike trails
Miles of beaches
30+ golf courses
13 museums, including the International Museum of Arts and Science (IMAS) in McAllen, Children's Museum of Brownsville, and the recently completed San Benito Cultural Heritage Museum that will house the San Benito Historical Society, the Texas Conunto Hall of Fame & Museum, and an exhibit honoring Freddy Fender.