New Braunfels’ founders took a decidedly European approach to laying out their new settlement. Unlike many Texas towns, the courthouse faces the marktplatz rather than standing in the middle – the open plaza with a bandstand gazebo celebrates the German-Texan spirit of independence. Twice Comal County commissioners tried to move the courthouse to the platz, and twice the city refused. Similarly, none of the town’s churches are located on the plaza as they often are in other towns. Since it was erected in 1905, the bandstand has played host to numerous performances in a community for whom music has always been vital.
And German-Texan heritage is almost always on display in downtown New Braunfels through its regular festivals: Kindermasken Parade in April; Saengerfest in May; Wurstfest in November; and Wassailfest in December.