50 Years to the Day
A fiftieth-anniversary observance of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination was never supposed to happen in Dallas. The Kennedy family made clear that they wanted the date to receive no official recognition by the city. But the more than $3 million raised for “The 50th: Honoring the Memory of President John F. Kennedy” came from private financing, making the affair essentially something the people insisted on.
On a recent weekday morning, while reading on the lawn of Market Square Park (301 Milam, 713-223-2003)—a micro-oasis of red-brick paths and art installations on the northern end of downtown Houston—I took an informal tally of my fellow park dwellers: one 6-year-old ballerina-in-training led by her parents, two retirees with matching pedometers on their waistbands, two dog owners, three dogs, one bench sitter, a dozen office workers in line for breakfast gyr
Houston's original city center is benefiting from a renewed liveliness thanks to a rolling influx of bars and restaurants near Market Square Park, a community-minded micro-oasis that got its own face-lift in 2010. Though hardly the first, the current revival—which I've written about for the December 2013 issue—seems poised to stick.
How the West Was Won
It's officially leaf-peeping season. Thanks to the biological wonder that is chlorophyll degredation, the Texas landscape is aflame with color. Since these autumnal displays are nature's warning that it's about to get real cold ("cold" being a relative term here in Texas), now's the time to go exploring.
Lost Maples State Natural Area, near Vanderpool, and Guadalupe Mountains National Park, in far West Texas, are two of the season's star destinations, but don't overlook the Panhandle's cottonwoods (Caprock Canyon State Park's a good spot) or East Texas's oaks and sweetgums (try Athens' 55-mile fall foliage driving trail or Daingerfield State Park).
Here, a few good-looking Instagram photos from around the state to inspire your next Texas road trip.
Martin Dies Jr. State Park, in Jasper:
Knowing something about automobiles is part of Bun B’s job description. “Houston’s hip-hop culture is largely defined by the car culture,” he said. But while Houston’s car scene is based on heavily customized automobiles called “slabs” (originally an acronym for “slow, loud and bangin’”), his latest passion focuses on a different, faster sort of car.
Love and Hate
The maze is part of Barton Hills Farms' annual Fall Festival & Corn Maze. Each year's maze is Texas-themed (last year's gave participants the chance to get lost in the outline of the state itself), but the folks at Barton Hills outdid themselves with the Willie Nelson corn maze, which features a guitar adorned with a bandana and Willie's iconic braids, along with the words "Always On My Mind" carved into the stalks, which stand over 7' high in parts.