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3 Tips for the Texas Sales Tax Holiday

Is it almost August? That means Texas Sales Tax Holiday is coming up fast and furious. With more people venturing out, it’s sure to be busy from August 6 to 8. That’s because this is Texas Tax-Free weekend in 2021.

It’s easy to overspend during the tax holiday. These tips will help you ensure you buy what you need and avoid buying something you already have. The nice thing about the tax-free weekend is that it’s for everyone, not just families with kids going to school.

Here are a few important things to know:

  • Items $100 or more are taxable.
  • Does not apply to clothing subscription boxes.
  • Keep all your receipts.
  • Stores will not give out rainchecks.

Make the most of tax-free weekend and back-to-school shopping with these tips.

  1. Review the official list

You may have seen online articles talking about what’s taxable and what’s exempt. However, some of these aren’t accurate. The one list you want to refer to is the official Sales Tax Holiday list from the Comptroller of Texas. It’d be a good idea to print the list or save it to your phone.

Again, all items priced at $100 or more are not exempt from taxes. Yes, even if they’re on the list. For example, tennis shoes are exempt from taxes unless they cost $100 or more. Be aware that not all shoes qualify for the tax exemption.

The following types of footwear are not tax-free:

  • Cleats
  • Running shoes with cleats
  • Ballet slippers
  • Ski boots

And just because one item is taxable, others may not be. For example, tennis skirts and football jerseys are exempt, but football pads and baseball pants are taxable. The logic is that people wear tennis skirts and football jerseys as clothes outside of the sport. Whereas cleats and pads are specific to a sport.

Flip-flops, sandals, and cowboy boots are exempt. While belts are exempt, stand-alone belt buckles are not.

Would you categorize pajamas as school clothes or school supplies? No, they’re exempt. Here are tax-free items that may surprise you:

  • Swimsuits
  • Robes
  • Slippers
  • Hunting vests
  • Suspenders
  • Diapers: baby and adult
  • Graduation caps and gowns

So, use the list from the Comptroller of Texas as your only source. Double-check our work.

  1. Make a shopping list

When you don’t prepare for shopping, you risk buying a lot of things you already have. Before you go, create a list of what you need. Try on clothes to confirm current clothing and shoe sizes. Don’t use the dressing room as the place to figure it out.

While most people may fit in two or three different sizes, it helps to have a baseline. You want to minimize trying on clothes during a hectic shopping time.

  1. Note store hours

You won’t find Black Friday-like hours, but many stores will extend their hours for the Texas Sales Tax Holiday. If you want to avoid the crowds, go as soon as the store opens on Friday. Some people still have to work, so it’s most likely the least crowded time of the whole weekend.

These three tips will optimize your tax-free weekend and minimize the headaches.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

 

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Places in the Texas Hill Country Near Kyle Worth Exploring

For those not familiar with the term “Texas Hill Country”, it references the geographic area that covers 25 counties in West, Central, and South Texas. The most notable locations include Austin, Lockhart, New Braunfels, San Marcos, and Wimberley. And there are a few lesser-known towns you might want to check out.

People love coming to the Texas Hill Country because of its breathtaking views, photograph-worthy scenes, history, and adventurous spirit. The possibilities are many! Here are different places to help you find a match for your interests.

Austin

Kyle residents choose to live here because they can savor the country living while being close enough to Austin and all the fun stuff it has to offer. Especially the music fans because Austin is known as the Live Music Capital of the World. It’s no surprise considering Austin has many live music venues.

Sports fans love watching University of Texas teams and FC Austin play. SXSW is held here every year for the latest in music, interactive, and movies. And Austin Bergstrom International airport will take you where you want to go.

San Marcos

Among other things, but most people head to San Marcos for one thing: outlet shopping at Premium Outlets and the Tanger Outlets. It has two full-sized outlet centers side-by-side with more than 200 stores to explore. Be sure to stop by San Marcos Downtown Square filled with boutique, unique shops, and restaurants.

Wimberley

Located 18 miles from Kyle, Wimberley is a town that sits between Austin and San Antonio. It’s where Cypress Creek and Blanco River connect turning Wimberley into a refreshing summer destination. Check out Blue Hole Regional Park, Jacob’s Well Natural Area, and Wimberley Market Days.

Canyon Lake

If you love recreation, then head straight to Canyon Lake for swimming, boating, fishing, camping, sailing, kayaking, and more. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages eight parks, two marinas, a golf course, a yacht club, and the property surrounding the lake.

Lockhart

One word describes Lockhart for a lot of people: Barbecue. After all, it’s the BBQ Capital of Texas. Many of the top BBQ joints can be found within 18 miles of Kyle. It’s also a favorite for day trips and weekend getaways. The city’s website lists all the places you may want to explore as well as lodging.

New Braunfels

You have so many options in New Braunfels including Gruene Historic District. This place is on the National Register of Historic Places with its many buildings that have been around since the 1800s. The Comal River is a spring-fed park that remains 72 degrees all year long.

Schlitterbahn Water Park, Natural Bridge Caverns, Animal World and Snake Farm Zoo, and McKenna Children’s Museum are all found there. It’s a great spot for a getaway weekend. Considering it’s around 30 minutes from Kyle, you can easily visit often.

What are your favorite Texas Hill Country destinations? Let us know on social media by connecting with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

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Area Attractions Events Family Fun

Kyle Market Days is Back

Local favorite Kyle Market Days is back! On the second Saturday of every month from May through September, you can browse local vendors and farm-to-market items, do arts and crafts, and sway to live music. The location has moved to Gregg Clarke Park (1180 W Center St, Kyle, TX 78640).

The event runs from 9 am to noon except for September’s event, which will be a special event called Squeeze Me on the Square on September 12. The market’s web page has a list of vendors and the months they’ll attend.

If you’d like to spend more time listening to the music, you can bring a lawn chair and a cooler. The next Kyle Market Days is this weekend on July 10.

Poco Loco Supermarket 

Want another market to visit? Poco Loco (1095 Windy Hill Rd., Kyle, Texas 78640) is a foodie’s paradise. You’ll find authentic Mexican food. If you love spicy salsa, the creamy jalapeño salsa is a must-try! The market makes flour tortillas and hot corn in-house! A Hispanic woman sells freshly-made churros outside of the store. But you never know when she’ll show up. So, stop by often!

Movies in Kyle

Want to get out of the house for a couple of hours? Check out Summer Movies in Kyle. The Kyle Parks and Recreation Department shows the latest blockbuster movies on the big screen. It’s free! The movies are held at the lake (700 Lehman Rd., Kyle, Texas 78640). Tomorrow, they’re showing Trolls World Tour.

You have another great movie option nearby. Doc’s Drive-In Theatre on 1540 Satterwhite Rd. in Buda has two large screens playing modern and classic movies from all genres. You can order traditional and non-traditional movie food from Doc’s Patio Dinner. They have house-made brisket and sauces as well as burgers, vegan wings, beer, wine, and more.

If you’re looking for new homes in Kyle, explore the master-planned community Crosswinds. Residents savor the natural beauty of the prairies while providing families with a place where they can connect

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

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Events Family Fun

Fourth of July Events Near Kyle

After many Fourth of July events were canceled in 2020, we are so excited for parades, fireworks, live music, and good food to return this year. Here’s a roundup of July 4th events happening in or near Kyle so you can celebrate!

Kyle’s Independence Day Fireworks Show and 2021 Stars and Stripes Classic at Plum Creek

Come celebrate Independence Day with fireworks bursting in the air at Kyle’s fireworks show. The festivities begin with the July 4th Stars and Stripes Classic at Plum Creek Golf Course (4301 Benner Rd, Kyle, TX 78640). 

As night falls, the fireworks show will launch from the golf course. Be sure to find a spot early at Kohlers Crossing and Kyle Parkway. You want to look for the tall water tower next to Hays CISD PAC. It’s one of the best places to watch the fireworks.

Annual Sertoma Independence Day and Frontier Days

Round Rock will celebrate America’s birthday on Saturday, July 3. It’s only a 45-minute drive from Dripping Springs. The day is filled with lots of patriotic activities including a festival, carnival, parade, and fireworks. They promise it will be bigger and better than ever. Check out the schedule and the latest information on the Round Rock government website.

Nutty Brown Theater Bob Schneider Independence Base and Fireworks

The Nutty Brown Amphitheater (12225 Hwy 290 West, Austin, TX 78737) brings back Bob Schneider to celebrate Independence Day on July 3. Visit the event page for ticket prices. 

San Marcos Summer in the Park

Start your celebration early on July 1 at San Marcos Summer in the Park in San Marcos Plaza Park. Located only 15 minutes from Dripping Springs, the concert runs from 7:30 to 9:30 PM. The musical artist is Los Aztex known for their traditional and urban sensibilities. 

H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert and Fireworks

The popular event is back! Deck out in red, white, and blue and head to Vic Mathias Shores (900 W Riverside Dr, Austin, TX 78704) for a firecrackin’ good time. H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert and Fireworks will display fireworks over the city’s skyline backed by patriotic symphonic classics performed by the Austin Symphony Orchestra. The fun begins at 8 PM.

Many Austin events remain to be announced. Watch Visit Austin’s page for the latest 4th of July news.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team. 

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Area Attractions Events Family Fun

Here’s Where You Can Enjoy Summer Movies in Kyle

This is the 19th year the Kyle Parks and Recreation Department presents Movies in the Park, Typically, it’s held on the square in downtown. However, due to anticipated construction, the movies have moved to the lake at 700 Lehman Rd., Kyle, Texas 78640.

About Summer Movies in Kyle

Every summer, the Kyle Parks and Recreation Department shows the latest blockbuster movies on the big screen. It’s free for all ages. All movies are rated G or PG except when noted and they start at sundown.

One thing has changed this year is that registration is required. The city wants to ensure it keeps attendance under control. Visit the Summer Movies page for information and to enroll.

What do you need to know before you go? Bring something to sit on like blankets and chairs. Parking at Lake Kyle is limited, so arrive early. Because the lake is a Nature Preserve, pets aren’t allowed. You can bring food and coolers. There are trash and recycle bins on site.

What’s Playing at Movies at the Lake?

Here’s the remaining schedule for this summer’s movies:

  • June 25: Spiderman into the Spiderverse
  • July 9: Trolls World Tour
  • July 23: (Dive-in at the Pool) Minions
  • August 13: The Croods: A new age

Be aware registration dates close two days before the movie plays.

The Silver Screen: Senior Movie Night

Every month from June to December on the last Friday of the month at 5 pm, Kyle Parks and Recreation Department holds a Senior Movie Night. Movies are shown in the Krug Building, Mary Kyle Harston City Square Park is also known as Old City Hall. The next movie is Instant Family on June 25. Visit the City of Kyle Website to find out what movie will be showing next.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

 

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Check out the Dining Scene in Buda

Kyle is filled with many delicious dining options. But sometimes folks like to venture outside of city limits to expand their experiences to other places. Only 13 minutes from Crosswinds in Kyle, Buda has much to offer by way of dining. The Buda dining scene is hopping as several notable restaurants have chosen to call Buda home.

Here are some places popping up in Buda that are worth checking out.

Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ

One place has been making the news and that’s Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ (11500 Menchaca Road Austin, Texas 78748). The restaurant has appeared on Season 29 of “Dinners, Drive-Ins, and Dives” with Guy Fieri.

TexasMonthly Magazine also features their Texas pitmaster who is the youngest female pitmaster in Texas barbecue. Eliana Gutierrez is a 21-year-old and learned out how to barbecue from Valentina’s owner Miguel Vidal. And CNN Travel has also featured Valetina’s. The restaurant is in the process of moving to a new location with a full bar. Watch their website for updates.

Shugabees

Another BBQ restaurant and trailer in Buda worth tasting is Sugabees (1750 Farm to Market 1626, Buda, TX 78610) inside of Bucks Backyard. They serve BBQ on homemade tortillas, jalapeño potato salad, smoked chicken salad, spiced beans, mustard potato salad, and Beenana or chocolate Shugapudding.

You can pick up a favorite beverage at Bucks and enjoy your Shugabees in its new indoor / outdoor bar or relax on the back deck that overlooks Onion Creek. They have live music on Fridays and Saturdays. Visit Buck’s website for upcoming live performances.

Willie’s Joint and Bandit Taco

Budaful foods is the catering company behind the stove at Willie’s Joint (824 Main St., Buda, Texas 78610) and in the Bandit Taco food truck. Willie’s Joint serves up burgers and sandwiches as well as adult drinks. While they’re a family-friendly restaurant, only 21 and older can dine in the 1940s ranch-style house after 10 PM.

If you’re at Willie’s Joint, you can order food online from Bandit Tacos and they’ll let you know when it’s ready. And like its name, you’ll find a menu filled with all kinds of taco options including breakfast tacos. So, you get two-for-one when you go to Willie’s Joint: Burgers ‘n’ tacos!

Mud Bugs

Love seafood? You won’t have to drive to Louisiana for Cajun food. Just head to Mudbugs (306 S. Main St Suite 107 Buda, Texas 78610) for Cajun cookin’ at this old soul restaurant serving shrimp, crab, crawfish, scallops, as well as non-seafood items.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. Do a search for Buda restaurants for more choices. But these should get you off to a great start!

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Experience the Country Life Near Kyle

Kyle residents can go from riding in a car to riding on a horse in just 20 minutes. Texas Trail Rides at Lone Star Ranch aims to “Keep Austin country.” They love to say the best way to experience Austin is on horseback.

About Texas Trail Rides

There are few places in Texas where you can go on ranch trail rides on 600+ acres of land in the Austin Hill Country. Texas Trail Rides provides riders with safety gear and lead ’em across the scenic creek into beautiful nature within Austin city limits.

This is a working ranch and they request you arrive 30 minutes before your ride for an orientation. They’ll get you fitted for helmets and introduce you to your horse. Wear close-toed shoes (tennis shoes and boots) and long pants. They also recommend bringing sunglasses and water.

Just browse Texas Trail Ride on Instagram or Texas Trail Ride’s Facebook and you’ll want to be transported there. Horseback riding is their main service, but there is more to be had at Lone Star Ranch for the full Texas experience.

About Lone Star Ranch

Lone Star Ranch has miles of trails, creeks, and fields for a memorable day. Besides horseback riding, they offer archery, fishing, and tomahawk and ax throwing. If you want more firepower, they have experienced marksmen and adventure guides who can create a custom trap shoot.

Want to take horseback riding to the next level? They offer private lessons and an after-school riding program where students can learn barrel racing and dressage. Applying an approach based on an organization called Pony Club, they teach you how to be horse people not just riders.

ATV guided tours take you on an adventure around the ranch. An ATV experience includes safety instruction, ATV instructors, helmets, and fuel. Those opting for a fishing excursion can try fly fishing, bass fishing, or creek fishing. Want to explore the crystal-clear creeks and wildlife up close? Kayaks and SUP (stand-up paddle boarding) are just the ticket.

Their cow-folk can also show you a real-life, private rodeo complete with steers and trick roping! And if you have a larger group, they’ll rustle up some big fun such as Armadillo Racing. For the buckaroos, they have a farm animal petting zoo and pony rides.

Explore the photos on Lone Star Ranch Texas on Instagram to see what waits for you.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Keep It Kyle Pie Series: Aviator Pizza and Drafthouse

It’s time for another edition of the Keep It Kyle Pie Series that proves how Kyle earned its nickname as the Pie Capital of Texas. You’ll find food establishments and restaurants all over Kyle pushing out delicious pizza and dessert pies.

Next up is Aviator Pizza. You’ll find it at 856 Kohlers Crossing Suite 305 Kyle, TX 78640.

About Aviator Pizza

First opened in 2014, the pizza place is locally owned and operated that offers sourced craft pizza and a Texas craft beer bar. The Kyle location is Aviator Pizza’s third. The restaurant also has locations in Elgin, Austin’s South Congress neighborhood, and Parmer Lane in Austin.

Check out Aviator’s Yelp page with the mouthwatering photos. Looks like a party for the taste buds waiting to happen!

What’s on the Menu at Aviator Pizza?

You’ll find a menu full of specialty pizza options. Aviator Pizza makes all the sauces and uses fresh-made dough and ingredients. Gluten-free options are available in the 12-inch. Check out the South Austin pizza with its red sauce base, prosciutto, goat cheese, wild arugula tossed in their homemade honey balsamic wine vinaigrette.

You’ll find the traditional favorites including vegetarian, Margherita, meat lovers known as Meat Almighty, and Hawaiian. They also have Major Tom with a red sauce base, pepperoni, sage sausage, red onions, green peppers, and fresh portabella mushrooms. Buffalo chicken, BBQ grilled chicken, spinach, and chicken fajita are available.

Another original is Ground Control with many of the same ingredients as Major Tom and adds pit-smoked ham, ground beef, and black olives. Garlic lovers, check out the Flying Garlic with its garlic butter base and grilled chicken.

What do you get when pizza and nachos get together? El Nacho pizza with a red sauce, ground beef, olives, jalapenos, cheddar, and tortilla strips. It’s nacho your ordinary pizza! The menu contains vegan and vegetarian options like sriracha Brussel sprouts and goat cheese. They have vegan cheese for substitutions.

Non-pizza options consist of focaccia, calzones, and salads. The grinder sandwiches are a simple sourdough hoagie. And dessert? Bowl us over with their cinnamon dessert selections. These use Aviator’s crust topped with a cinnamon sauce base and homemade cream cheese icing. OK, we’re done here as we need to run out and get some for ourselves!

More Kyle pies:

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Best Hiking Trails Near Kyle

May is a great time to go hiking. Not one bit of winter cold remains and yet it’s not hot as Texas can be in July and August. Here are some of the great places to go for a hike near the Crosswinds Community in Kyle. Many of these are just a 30-minute drive from Kyle.

Barton Creek Greenbelt

Starting at Austin’s Zilker Park, Barton Creek Greenbelt (3755-B S Capital of Texas Hwy, Austin, TX 78704) offers some of the best hiking trails in Texas with seven miles of trails. Hiking on its trail, you’ll see limestone cliffs, dense foliage, and bodies of water. Visit the website for its access points and additional information. Kyle residents can go from their doorsteps to hiking within 30 minutes.

Lady Bird Lake

Ten miles of trail awaits you at the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail located at Lady Bird Lake (1820 S Lakeshore Blvd, Austin, TX 78741). People rave about the park’s view of Austin, waterside scenery, and granite pathways.

McKinney Falls State Park

Less than half an hour’s drive from Kyle, McKinney Falls State Park (5808 McKinney Falls Pkwy., Austin, TX 78744) is a sight to see with Onion Creek flowing over limestone ledges. You’ll explore a whopping nine miles of trails. If you’d like to push a stroller, there are almost 3 miles of hard surface trail.

After you finish your hike, you might have an urge to take a dip in the water. There’s nothing like a refreshing swim after an energizing hike.

Jacob’s Well Natural Area

Open year-round, Jacob’s Well Natural Area (1699 Mt. Sharp Rd., Wimberley, Texas 78676) features more than 81 acres surrounding the spring. Fans laud its ecological splendor, limestone cliffs, and native vegetation. Every hiking trail has something different to see.

You can finish off your hike with a swim in the Trinity aquifer. Its temperature remains at 68 degrees Fahrenheit year-round. Swimming is available between May and October.

Future: Great Spring Trail

While this trail is in the works, it’s worth knowing about as it opens sometime in 2022. This trail is part of one continuous trail that runs from San Antonio to Austin. In Kyle, it will go from the Blanco River and meet up with Plum Creek.

The City of Kyle has already received a grant award for the trail from The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Stay tuned as we’ll post updates when it makes progress.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Explore the inventory of new homes in Kyle or contact our Crosswinds team.

 

 

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Area Attractions Family Fun

Check Out These Awesome Parks Near Kyle

Beautiful weather has finally arrived and we’re all raring to enjoy the great outdoors. Probably more so this year than any other because of all that’s been going on. Here are Crosswinds in Kyle residents’ favorite parks closest to home.

Mary Kyle Hartson City Square Park

In 1880, two acres of City Square Park (101 S. Burleson Rd., Kyle, Texas 78640) made up the town center. Today, it’s a park that includes the grounds around City Hall and the Kyle Train Depot. The City renamed the park Mark Kyle Hartson City Square Park in 2011. The park holds marquee events.

Steeplechase Dog Park

Dog lovers can head to Steeplechase Dog Park (135 Hallie Dr, Kyle, TX 78640) with their fur babies. This park features 31 acres of open space and Plum Creek flowing through it. There, you’ll have access to a covered pavilion, playscapes, trails, baseball and football fields, disc golf, and basketball and sand volleyball courts.

Jacob’s Well Natural Area

For ecological splendor just 30 minutes from Kyle, go to Jacob’s Well Natural Area (1699 Mt. Sharp Rd., Wimberley, Texas 78676). The preserve is filled with more than 81 acres surrounding the spring where you’ll find limestone cliffs and native vegetation thriving. Open year-round for exploring, hikers can explore a variety of trails with things to see at each one.

It’s the home of the second-largest full submerged cave in Texas. The water comes from the Trinity Aquifer that flows its way from the underground cave system. The deepest part of the cave is 140 feet deep. Except for swimming, no reservations are needed to visit JWNA

McKinney Falls State Park

Located fewer than 30 minutes from Kyle, McKinney Falls State Park (5808 McKinney Falls Pkwy., Austin, TX 78744) is an oasis where you’ll find the waters of Onion Creek streaming over limestone ledges. This park contains almost nine miles of trails for a memorable hike or bike ride. It also has a 2.8-mile hard surface trail for those who want to push strollers or go on an easy bike ride.

You can also go fishing and swimming. No license is required to fish from shore in any Texas state park. Fans of camping have a choice of more than 80 campsites with water and electric hookups.

Gregg-Clarke Park

The Gregg and Clarke families ensured the community had a large park for recreation and special events. The result is Gregg-Clarke Park (1231-1301 W Center St, Kyle, TX 78640), a multi-use park that includes Kyle Pool, lit softball and baseball fields, tennis courts, a covered pavilion, walking trails, wide-open spaces, and shaded playscapes. It anchors Kyle Pool. Kyle residents can reserve Ash Pavilion for private events.

To stay on top of great resources from Kyle and nearby, connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Looking to move? Contact our Crosswinds team.