SMALL TOWN IN A BIG CITY
Today Helotes finds itself surrounded by the ever-expanding reach of big city San Antonio. But thanks to surviving places like the Gugger Homestead, built by Arnold Gugger and one of Helotes’ founding fathers, and the renowned Texas honky-tonk John T. Floore Country Store, Helotes has managed to keep its small town character intact. Gugger built a home in 1881 along the east bank of Helotes Creek, establishing the location of the original townsite and also providing a mercantile store, blacksmith shop, saloon and post office where Gugger served as postmaster. In 1908 he sold land to Bert Hielman who would establish Helotes’ first dance hall. But it was the opening of the John T. Floore Country Store in 1942 that managed to shine the spotlight on Helotes and make it a routine stop for musicians on the nation’s country and western circuit. Floore’s enterprise serves as a bar, café, grocery store, and dance hall where country acts like Bob Wills, Patsy Cline, Hank Williams, and legend Elvis Presley performed. Today, Floore Country Store continues to host musical events and draw crowds from around the country. Visitors to Helotes will also find a variety of other activities as well, including events and festivals like the annual Cornyval Parade and Festival, the summertime Movie Night at the Park, and the CASI Chili Cook-off in October.