Residents of Jersey Village enjoy the best of both worlds – the small–town, family-friendly Texas charm located within 30 minutes of all the big-city amenities of Houston.
The city, known for its active community and year-round events that draw locals and folks nearby, has a population of less than 8,000 spread over 3.5 miles at the northwest corner where Beltway 8 and U.S. 290 intersect.
Niche.com calls Jersey Village “one of the best places to live in Texas” with its urban-suburban mix of young professionals and seniors. "In Jersey Village, we understand that the quality of life is crucial for the productivity and happiness of the workforce," said City Manager Austin Bleess.
It’s an area that has signature events such as Founders Day, July 4th, Fall Frolic, and Holiday in the Village, along with a wide range of recreational activities, beautiful parks, a community pool, and a well-regarded 18-hole public golf course.
Jersey Village 1950s: From Cows to Cul-de-sacs
The area was Harris County farmland for the first half of the 20th century with Clark W. Henry owning 1,236 acres of dairy land that would one day become Jersey Village.
“The ranch was stocked with Jersey dairy cattle and at one time the dairy had one of the largest and best herds of Jersey cattle in the world,” says the village’s history.
Henry operated the F&M Dairy, a well-known spot for those coming out from Houston.
“Henry also had an interesting showplace on the land that is now a public right-of-way between the east and westbound lanes of U.S. Highway 290. At this place the public was allowed to watch the milking of cows from behind glass doors; and a short distance away ice cream, made from the milk of those cows was sold,” says the history.
Free pony rides and live country western music entertainment drew throngs to the dairy, but Henry ceased operations because of poor health.
Henry and Leroy Kennedy, friends with each other from the Garden Oaks Baptist Church, became business partners and drew up plans for Jersey Village in February of 1954, named for the Jersey cattle that had roamed the vast land.
The first homes were built along Jersey Drive with the first family moving in October 1954.
Less than two years later, on April 16, 1956, residents voted unanimously (58-0) to incorporate Jersey Village into a city.
Jersey Village grew slowly with just 765 residents in 1970 but the 1980s saw explosive growth and that prompted local votes to approve a Home Rule Charter for the city in 1986, creating today’s council-manager form of government.
Founders Day to Fall Frolic: Plenty to do in Jersey Village
Jersey Village’s annual events are so popular that they can draw an attendance bigger than the city’s population.
Popular events include:
- Founders Day: Celebrates the city’s founding each April with carnival rides and games, live entertainment, a chili cookoff, a cake walk, bingo, fireworks, and more.
- July 4th: Put on your patriot best for a parade, concert in the park, food trucks, BBQ competitions, lemonade stand competitions, kids fun, and fireworks.
- Fall Frolic: Halloween event with trunk-or-treat (trick-or-treating out of the back of decorated cars and trucks!), DJ, kids entertainment, and food trucks.
- Holiday in the Village: Christmas in chilly Jersey Village, literally, as the city brings in 30,000 pounds of snow to celebrate. The celebration also includes the Parade of Lights, holiday markets, food trucks, a business fair, and, naturally, a visit from Santa!
That’s enough events to fill up your social card, but Jersey Village has weekly and monthly fun from movie nights to farmers markets, to art classes to family bingo nights to summer reading programs to concerts in the park where family and friends pack a blanket and lawn chair to enjoy the shows.
Fore! Teeing Off for Fun in Jersey Village
Golf and Jersey Village have been linked from just about the get-go as in the late 1950s a parcel of land was sold and earmarked as an employee-only course for Cameron Iron Works.
Bob Simmons did the architectural design work on the original course layout and excavation started on what, one day, would become Jersey Meadow Golf Course.
In the late 1980s well-known golf course architect Carlton Gipson redesigned the course and helped make it the course it is today, nestled among mature live oak groves.
Now municipally owned by the City of Jersey Village, Jersey Meadow Golf Club has one of the most popular Senior Golf Association memberships in the Houston area at 250 strong.
There’s a Men’s Golf Association that holds two events per month in a variety of formats, and a Ladies Golf Association that is very active.
The 18-hole golf course features a challenging yet enjoyable layout, suitable for golfers of all skill levels. The facility also includes a driving range, chipping and putting greens, a fully stocked pro shop, and a restaurant and bar.
Local Parks Offer Residents Outdoor Activities
Jersey Village may not encompass a large area, but the small city has a nice offering of local parks for residents to enjoy outdoor activities.
The Parks & Recreation Department is responsible for the city’s parks and open spaces, trails, boulevards, community pool and splash pad, events and programs, the Jersey Meadow Golf Course, and management of city facilities.
Local parks to check out include:
- Clark Henry Park: Features splash pad, playground, walking trail, basketball hoops, soccer goals, and a pavilion with bathrooms and a kitchen.
- Jersey Meadow Nature Trail and Dog Park: Features a 2-acre dog park with areas for big and small dogs. There’s also a walking trail and a pond for fishing and kayaking.
- Carol Fox Park: Features a playground, sandbox, sand volleyball court, lending library, and a gazebo.
- Philippine Park: Features a walking trail, bat house, and open space.
- Welwyn Park: Features a playground, sandbox, and gazebo.
There’s also the Jersey Village Civic Center which has an auditorium and conference rooms for the community.
Eat Like a Local: Jersey Village
Nestled in the Houston suburbs, Jersey Village has a plethora of dining options an easy drive away, but when locals want a meal close to home, they try:
- Adriatic Café: This cozy neighborhood Italian restaurant is famous for its inviting warm bread freshly baked on the premises. The family-owned eatery offers hand-made specials daily cooked in special olive oil.
- Good Eatz: This veteran-owned restaurant evolved from a popular food truck and offers comfort food such as chicken and waffles, mouth-watering patty melts, and brisket grilled cheese.
Senate Avenue Brewing: With a focus on beer, but also perfect for diverse tastes, this brewery also offers a fine selection of wines by the glass and bottle, spiked seltzers, sodas, juice boxes, and water to pair with delicious full-service kitchen fare.