Worth the Drive is NBCDFW's look at the best quick getaways around Texas

An Oasis in the Texas Heat

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Steven Chamblee
    Dragon Fountain, featuring Coke and 7-Up bottles, marbles and tiles.

    Is the Texas heat getting to you? You may not be able to beat the heat, but you can find an oasis (and some shade) in the Chandor Gardens in Weatherford.

    Featuring Chinese architecture and English garden elegance, the 3.5-acre estate is a feast for the senses.

    You can enjoy the serene sounds of the Dragon Fountain which features Coke and 7-Up bottles, colored marbles and handmade ceramic tiles, or the 30-foot man-made waterfall of Cox Mountain.

    As you leisurely stroll through the gardens you'll see the Moon Gate featuring roof tiles, gears, bottles and ceramic figurines and the Silver Garden which features gray foliage plants, a massive cedar elm tree is the centerpiece and it's surrounded by an Italian pergola covered with antique climbing roses.

    We're sure you'll find some peace and serenity in the middle of Weatherford's Historic District. If you can't you may want to consider taking one of the T'ai Chi classes in the garden on Saturdays at 10 a.m.

    Unfortunately we just missed A Night of Music in the Round, but Facility Coordinator Karen Nantz tells us it will return on Sept. 11 in honor the firefighters, police and victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

    History

    The oasis in Weatherford is the love child of Douglas Chandor of Surrey, England, and his bride, Weatherford native Ina Kuteman. You'll find it hard to believe the gardens were once rock-hard cow pasture. The couple spent 16 years developing the gardens, but Douglas died before it was complete. Ina opened the gardens three months later and charged the public $1 to visit the gardens named for her husband. When Ina died in 1978 the gardens died with them.

    In 1994, thanks to Weatherford residents Charles and Melody Bradford the gardens were brought back from years of deterioration. The City of Weatherford purchased Chandor Gardens in May 2002. It's open to the public and also available for weddings, private parties and retreats.

    Whether you go this summer or wait until it gets cooler this fall, Chandor Gardens 25 miles west of Fort Worth is worth the drive.

    Chandor Gardens
    Weatherford
    817-613-1700
    Public Hours:
    Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Saturday, 9am to 3 p.m.
    Sunday, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
    Admission:
    $5 for Adults and Teens
    Children 12 & Under are free but must be accompanied by an adult.
    On the Web: Chandor Gardens