October 2019

Keeping the Groove With Texas Bass Players, From Conjunto to Country and Polka to Punk

September 30, 2019 | By Jesse Sublett

Bass is the heartbeat of Texas music, from the hard-rocking roadhouse blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan to the conjunto-revival sounds of Los Texmaniacs. Whenever you go out dancing to live music, the underlying tones of the upright bass fiddle or electric bass guitar drive your every move across the floor—and that’s true whether you notice the person playing the instrument or not.

5 of the Most Haunted Locations in Texas

September 30, 2019 | By MM Pack, Asher Elbein, E. Dan Klepper

For every person now alive, science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke once wrote, there stand 30 ghosts, “for that is the ratio by which the dead outnumber the living.” So it stands to reason that wandering spirits abound in a vast state like Texas. From the barren deserts of the west to the thick woodlands of the east, specters have been reported to haunt defunct hospitals, active schools, lonely highways, and thriving hotels.

Red Steagall, Country Hit-Maker and Cowboy Poet, Talks Texas Spirit and Overcoming Polio

September 30, 2019 | By Matt Joyce

Driving the backroads northwest of Fort Worth, you’d never know that one of the luminaries of Texas country and western music lives just around the bend. Down a gravel road, a pickup marked with Red Steagall’s “RS” brand signals that Steagall is around today. Inside his office, framed records and photos signed by the likes of Ronald Reagan line the wall, hinting at Steagall’s influential career.

Find Rock Art, Relaxation, and Rare Wildflowers at Twistflower Ranch

September 30, 2019 | By Clayton Maxwell

O ften the most exceptional things are found by accident.
That’s what happened at Twistflower Ranch, 5,800 acres of West Texas mesas and canyons, named for the rare bracted twistflower that bathes the arid landscape with delicate purple blossoms in the spring.

Scholz Garten Endures Through Continuous Change

September 30, 2019 | By Kimya Kavehkar

The beer garden and restaurant, erected in 1866 by German immigrant and bookbinder August Scholz, is the place where college professors and state legislators often meet over pints. Nearly every Texas governor has patronized the bar, and it’s famous for game-day crowds during Longhorn football season.

My Hometown: Rooted In the Railroad and Blues Music, Navasota Chugs With Cultural Vibrancy

September 30, 2019 | By Heather Brand

Navasota has long stoked history buffs’ imaginations. It was, after all, the area where historians believe French explorer Sieur de La Salle was murdered in 1687. Then, as a 19th-century railhead on the Navasota River, the town bustled with both commerce and unsavory characters with little regard for the law.

Photo: A Snowy Autumn Day in the Chisos Mountain of Big Bend

September 30, 2019 | By

While fall in much of the state brings only slightly cooler temperatures, pockets like the higher elevations of the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park feature a seasonal display of trees dressed in oranges and yellows. Photographer Darren Huski was fortunate to encounter a rare fall-winter combination when, he recalls, he “arrived in the park in
a blizzard and awoke to find the Chisos a mixture of vivid color and fresh snow.”

Vintage: High School Homecoming Heritage in Fort Worth

September 30, 2019 | By

Fort Worth photographer Calvin Littlejohn (1909-93) captured this Friday night scene, complete with traditional homecoming mums, at I.M. Terrell High School. The school opened in 1882 as Fort Worth’s first black school under segregation and operates today as the I.M. Terrell Academy.

Fall Getaway: Follow the Butterfly Trail in the Valley

September 30, 2019 | By Daniel Blue Tyx

The Texas Butterfly Festival promises visitors “the best butterflying in America.” It might seem like hyperbole were the claim not backed up by the fact that the Rio Grande Valley contains a greater diversity of butterflies than anywhere else in the country—more than 300 species and counting, or roughly 40 percent of the butterflies in North America. You can see a great deal of them at the festival, which takes place the first week of November at the National Butterfly Center in Mission. All of those butterflies—condensed within a region that’s easy to traverse over a weekend—make a fall tour of the Valley a must-do on any Texas bucket list

Qualify for Boston at This Marathon in Marathon

September 30, 2019 | By John T. Davis

At fun runs across the country, it’s not uncommon to see participants goofily dressed in animal costumes for effect, but at Marathon 2 Marathon, a race occurring each October in West Texas, it’s the spectators who assume the role of the beast. In this case, though, the antelopes, rattlesnakes, javelinas, roadrunners, coyotes, and jackrabbits are real.
Exotic wildlife, a big sky, and an expanse of high-desert landscape are integral components of M2M, the Boston Marathon-qualifying run held in Marathon, named after the city in Greece that inspired the modern-day race. Last year’s event, the 16th annual, more than tripled the size of the town, considered an entry point for Big Bend National Park. The community of around 420 souls welcomed nearly 540 registrants, along with family and friends. Part Trans-Pecos Mardi Gras, part fundraiser and community-builder, M2M steers runners through the beautiful, windswept prairie along US 385 and into downtown Marathon.
“It is the biggest event that Marathon has, and everyone is touched in some way by M2M,” says Marci Roberts, the race director and a Marathon resident. “Since 2011, the race has given $60,000 to local organizations, including the school, the volunteer fire department, the library, and the clinic. That may not sound like much for a big city, but for us it is huge.”

Historical Treasures Await on This Rarely Traveled Stretch of Big Bend’s River Road

September 30, 2019 | By E. Dan Klepper

Drive west along Farm-to-Market Road 170 from the border town of Presidio, leaving all convenience stores and gas stations behind, and you’ll travel two slim lanes of humped, serpentine blacktop, its edges collapsing like desert crust. The road’s convolutions mirror the Rio Grande to the left but after just a few miles, the river’s water diminishes, occasionally disappearing altogether. In its place, dense mesquite thickets and catclaw thrive along its dry bed, a thorny border wall of its own making.

This Fredericksburg Restaurant Features a Rare All-Texas Wine List

September 30, 2019 | By John Lumpkin

Asign above the door to Cabernet Grill in Fredericksburg tells patrons what they need to know about the restaurant: “Texas Wine Spoken Here.” Fluently, in fact. Cabernet Grill has landed on Wine Enthusiast’s “America’s 100 Best Wine Restaurants” two years in a row with an all-Texas wine list—a feat even the most Texas-centric restaurants haven’t achieved.

An LBJ Enthusiast Retraces the Route of Her School Field Trips in Search of History—and Herself

September 30, 2019 | By Robyn Ross

Every May, after the bluebonnets had faded from the hills around Marble Falls, my classmates and I would pack sack lunches, board a diesel-powered school bus, and hit the road. The annual field trip was the last major educational event before the school year ended. Or was it?

The Daytripper’s Top 5 in Brownsville

September 30, 2019 | By Chet Garner

Down at the Southern tip of our state, Tex-Mex is more than just a food group—it’s an entire way of life. And here in one of our most vibrant border cities, the cultures of two countries blend together into one incredible day trip. (And yes, I’m considering Texas a country.) This town started with a “bang” and continues to excite everyone who visits.

Texas Highways’ New Managing Editor and Writers-At-Large Share Their Favorite Travel Discoveries

September 26, 2019 | By Emily Roberts Stone, Executive Editor

Often, the most gratifying parts of travel are the places or moments that take us by surprise. In honor of recent staff promotions, I asked our newly minted managing editor and writers-at-large to share a rewarding discovery they’ve made in their nearly 70 combined years of writing about Texas. I hope their revelations inspire one of your own.

In Defense of J. Frank Dobie—the Father of Texas Literature

September 24, 2019 | By Steven L. Davis

5 Mouthwatering Chef-Inspired Eats at Texas Stadiums

September 24, 2019 | By Phil West

Root, root, rooting for the home team works up a mighty hunger. At some stadiums around the state, the snacks have become bigger, bolder, and more ridiculous—take for example the Texas Rangers’ Globe Life Park in Arlington, which debuted a 2-pound chicken tender on its 2019 menu. But some arenas attempt to make their offerings ambitious in a different way, even scoring notable Texas chefs to create menu items.

Fall Really Does Happen in Texas – You Just Have to Know Where to Look

September 23, 2019 | By

Mother Nature’s autumnal coloration of leaves before she applies her cruel winter grip is a visual gift typically associated with areas of the country that actually experience four distinct seasons. In Texas, where for the most part it’s oppressively hot and dry in September and October, green can abruptly give way to brown, without displaying even a hint of the kaleidoscope of oranges, reds, and yellows typical of a postcard New England fall. There are hidden pockets of the state, however, where the trees, beneficiaries of just the right weather conditions, offer one final, dramatic blush. Follow our photographers to these special places for some of the best foliage in the state—from the Nolan River in North Texas and Garner State Park in the Hill Country, to the Canadian River in the Panhandle and Guadalupe Mountains
National Park in West Texas.

All About that Bass Playlist

September 10, 2019 | By

Listen to a playlist of songs mentioned in the October 2019 feature “All About that Bass”

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