Today, as you come into our park, you will see well-kept streets, cared-for lawns, mature palms, live oaks, citrus trees, flowering shrubs and blooming plants. Our hall is an impressive Southwestern design with plantings, a flower bed and a gazebo in it's yard. Many of the trees were placed in memory of former residents.
When, in 1980, Walter Piper and partners purchased the 50 acres that is now our park, it was a cabbage patch with a small recreation hall in the middle of it. The water, sewer and electric lines were laid out and installed. Roads were laid out and our smaller recreation hall, swimming pool, sauna, and jacuzzi were installed. A shuffle court was built and the park started to come together.
In 1982, there were 75 manufactured homes in the park. The big hall had not been started yet. There were orange trees between the swimming pool and the Village Circle homes. A few chip monks, wild rabbits, and an occasional jackrabbit were our wildlife. Green jays and ground wrens were present. We have always had cat birds, sparrows and occasionally parrots and chachalacas.
Park activities were arts & crafts, bingo, breakfasts & suppers, cards, exercise, golf, dancing, pool and shuffleboard. The big hall was finished in time for Christmas in 1983. The stage was use for the first time on New Year's Eve. Through the years, the stage has served as the setting for many musicians and other entertainment shows. The park activities have also increased to include dances, ceramics, church services, wood carving, jam sessions and many other things.
Another hall was built in the RV area which included laundry, bathrooms and showers. Our RV residents remain an important and most welcome part of all park functions and facilities. We look forward to the return of all our Winter Texans and friends as family!
Ranchero Village Circle Club was formed to promote social and recreational activities, promote the welfare of the members and promote friendly relations among the members, management and ownership of Ranchero Village. They meet semi-monthly during the season, to report to the members on all matters of concern or interest and address issues.
A non-denominational church was started in 1983, with Rev James Todd as pastor. It is now served by Chaplain Bob Ostermaier and continuing to grow under his leadership. Residents of other parks are welcome to join our services. As there is little expense for the church, much of the proceeds of the church go to help needy children in the area with pajamas and other gifts at Christmas time.
A favorite sport of our park is shuffling. Ranchero has hosted many shuffling tournaments on our 24 courts, including one of the largest which was the Carl's Tourney, with 900 participants from the Valley.
Our knitters & Quilters make hats and blankets for the newborns at the hospital and birthing center. There is a well attended flea market and craft show twice a year.
Golf has become a strong interest among the residents of Ranchero Village as the park has grown. Today men, women and mixed leagues play at several of the local golf courses. There are also Billiard tournaments with a very good showing here at Ranchero Village.
Today there are 401 home spaces and 149 RV spaces. The park sees around 90-95% occupancy during the busy season of mid October - mid April. There are some of the original residents from 1980-81 still residing in the park and we are pleased they find this such an enjoyable place to live. If you are 55+ years old and are looking for a friendly, active home environment to put down roots or just be Winter Texans, Ranchero Village still has some room for you!!!