Festivals and Events
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Festivals and Events
Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Every February, generally toward the end of the month, ranchers and cowboys congregate for three days at Sul Ross State University to regale audiences with original poetry and washtub-bass tributes to singers like Bob Wills. The idea is to preserve the traditions of the West in words and song. More on-site information is available on the second floor of the University Center. Hwy. 90, Alpine, TX, 79831. 432/837–2326 or 800/561–3712. www.cowboy-poetry.org.
Big Bend Balloon Bash. Brightly colored hot-air balloons dot the Alpine skies each Labor Day weekend. When the sun goes down, the balloons light up, and the flames are choreographed to music. Alpine-Casparis Municipal Airport, North Hwy. 118, Alpine, TX, 79830. 432/837–7486. www.bigbendballoonbash.com.
Marfa Lights Festival. This Labor Day weekend event celebrates the nighttime, multicolor mystery lights that appear in the Chinati Mountains east of U.S. 67 and south of U.S. 90 from 10 to 20 times a year. Do they result from pockets of atmospheric gas? The spirits of dead Apaches? Overdriven imaginations? Whatever they are, they draw curious visitors to the center of Marfa for a parade, live music, and food. Presidio County Courthouse lawn, Marfa, TX, 79843. 800/650–9696; 432/729–4942 Marfa Chamber of Commerce. www.marfacc.com/todo/marfalights.php.
Alpine Gallery Night Artwalk. For two days each November, the peculiar mix of ranching and artist culture that inhabits Alpine overflows the galleries and seeps into the town's main drag, Holland Avenue. Musicians play at the train depot, barbecue vendors crowd the streets, and local artists display their works in many downtown businesses. Holland Ave., Alpine, TX, 79830. 800/561–3712 Alpine Chamber of Commerce; 432/837–2326 Alpine Chamber of Commerce. www.artwalkalpine.com.
Terlingua International Chili Championship. On the first Saturday of November, top chefs spice up cooling weather with four days of chili cooking, bragging, and partying at Rancho CASI, on the north side of Highway 170, 11 miles west of Study Butte. Some of the prize-winning cooks dole out samples. And this is Texas, pardner: no beans allowed. Hwy 170, Terlingua, TX, 79852. 210/887–8827. www.chili.org/terlingua.html.
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