We're the Okerholms.
My husband, Erik, and I are often described as "having thought of everything" (because we truly have). We take pride in being discerning and efficiency experts, as well as storytellers and historians. Together, we put our heart, soul, brains, and muscle behind Legacy Ranch, making it a "great team" effort.
As empty nesters after raising our children in Austin, I work as an interior designer, while Erik is employed in data analytics in healthcare for a worldwide company. Together, we bring our guests what truly works well in a beautiful way.
Legacy Ranch is not only a tribute to our parents but also a steadfast family endeavor. You might spot our adult children at the ranch, helping out, unwinding, or staying while they're in town for their own business endeavors. As proud parents of an artist, graphic designer, college baseball player, a nursing student, and two giant schnauzers, our hearts and hands stay quite full.
This is our Legacy.
The word "Legacy" holds deep meaning for us. With parents who left a remarkable and positive impact on the world, we cherish and honor their memory by naming our houses after them. Each house embodies the essence of their humble roots, and their beautiful story finds a special place in every guest house.
Though our parents never lived in the Texas Hill Country, they cherished it deeply. When they visited, they often described it as "heaven on earth," and their love for this place has become a part of us.
We warmly invite you to experience our little slice of heaven, where you can enjoy an exclusive and unique getaway found nowhere else in Fredericksburg. By the time you leave, you'll already be planning your return, just like we did after every visit, knowing that this precious place holds a piece of our parents' legacy and love.
Legacy Ranch Property & Family History
1997 - 2009
2009 - 2018
February 14, 2018
April - May 2018
A log cabin is built in a little valley in Parsons, Tennessee. A two room dogtrot cabin, this cabin will someday honor Dr. Richard Okerholm (Erik's father) in Fredericksburg, TX.
A barn is built in Missouri. An expansive functioning barn with 8 animal pens and a hayloft, this barn would someday honor Nolan Kirbo Harper (April's father) in Fredericksburg, TX.
Lane & Laurice Heath purchase the land and build a German-style "Saltbox" farmhouse in 1998. They also find, dismantle & relocate the Tennessee log cabin. This becomes the Heath family farm where Laurice quilts, Lane builds the pole barn by hand and they raise goats.
The Smithers family purchases the farm as a second home from the Heath family. They add the barn from Missouri on the hill in 2010 to display taxidermy.
April & Erik marry. 6 months later, Dr. Richard A. Okerholm (Erik's father) passes away. Rita Okerholm (Erik's mother) comes to Texas for a visit from Florida for Christmas & is diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer on the one month anniversary of the passing of her husband of 52 years. Rita stays in Texas with April & Erik doting on her & treasuring their time with her.
After a year-long patient endurance of what will be, Rita joyfully joins Dr. Okerholm. Moments before doing so, she proudly requests she and her husband's cremains are laid to rest at "the ranch"...a place that was only an idea April & Erik shared with her for the future.
A real estate broker contacted April & Erik with a little slice of heaven that fit their vision perfectly. They jump on the chance without hesitation.
"LOVE" is born on this day.
April & Erik purchase & begin remodeling the houses and construct a new entrance. With houses being renamed to honor parents, the property is aptly named "Legacy Ranch" and guests first arrive May 26th.
After experiencing sweet messages in nature from Rita & Richard Okerholm via cardinals and monarch butterflies, April is inspired to build the essence of a chapel in a keyhole shaped grove of trees. The "chapel" is built to stand the test of time in steel and the structure is completed in summer.
Wedding inquiries begin streaming in due to the "open air" chapel concept. The need for facilities becomes apparent and a pretty dressing room for brides is a must. Covid shuts Legacy Ranch down. Erik & April utilize the shutdown for construction so as not to disturb guests that are no longer present. The Bridal building, complete with hill country boutique-style restrooms, is completed in early fall.
Legacy Ranch experiences the unprecedented Texas ice storm. 60% of trees are lost with at the surviving trees having lost at least 40% of their branches & tops. Miles of power poles & power lines leading to Legacy Ranch are downed by the massive and sudden ice storm. The driveway is impassable and fallen trees block access to the houses. For weeks, Erik commutes daily from Austin with chainsaws to clear the downed trees while April & their children haul limbs to 15 burn piles throughout Legacy Ranch.
Prioritizing clean-up in and around the chapel, a man makes a surprise proposal to his girlfriend in the Chapel a week into clean-up.
Power is finally restored after 3 weeks & 7 hours and busted pipes are found in every structure.
Legacy Ranch hosts its first wedding. Emily, Matt, their friends and family reiterate to April & Erik that creating spaces for love- and joy-filled days is their calling.
An unprecedented hail storm hits Legacy Ranch. All structures and vegetation suffered extensive damage by the golf ball to softball size hail. Hail broke through the windows and scattered the houses interiors. All of the Okerholm family's vehicles on property were totaled. In all, the 15 minute hail storm caused over $500,000 in property damage.
In May 2023, April & Erik's 3rd daughter is married in the Chapel surrounded by close friends & family.
The day after the wedding, the houses undergo remodeling and reconstruction from the hail storm.
A week later in Austin, April & Erik become empty-nesters, sell their house and relocate to Fredericksburg to live full-time at Legacy Ranch without ever looking back. 5 years of commuting two hours each way twice weekly is behind them.
Construction begins on "Legacy Oaks", a new Reception building which will offer a climate-controlled stunning structure with a vineyard hill country vibe.