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Driving to Texas - looking for fun things to see

Driving to Texas - looking for fun things to see

Old Jan 28th, 2007, 05:20 PM
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Driving to Texas - looking for fun things to see

Hi all!
I've been lurking around here for a while and finally decided to post my question.

I am going to be going to Texas this Thursday (leaving from Phoenix, AZ) and will be gone for a few days. Thursday we are getting up very early and will take I-10 to I-20. We are spending the first night in Abilene. Then on Friday we will head to McKinney (just north of Dallas) and stay for 2 nights and then on Sunday evening we will take I-40 and be in Weatherford, OK before heading back to Phoenix.
We already have our hotels planned so that's not an issue. We are just looking for fun things to see along the way. We are planning on stopping at a sand dune place in Texas (not sure of the name or how much it costs). And we are thinking about stopping at the Continental divide if it's anything spectacular. My friend has never been to Texas before so I want to make sure she sees some interesting sites. Is there anything to see around McKinney, or do in Weatherford, or on the way to Weatherford? Maybe in OKC? We will have all day Sunday to see sites in Oklahoma and all day Friday and a few hours on Saturday to see sites in the Dallas area (and of course driving into Dallas we would love to see somethings).

I'm a little hesitant to do a lot in Dallas as that is the only city I've ever got lost in almost every time I visit.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 05:29 PM
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I forgot to add, we like to do lots of things. Outdoorsy stuff, cool buildings. We're up for a lot, we're just not the "going clubbing" type or anything with huge crowds and loud music (unless it's a concert or something along those lines)
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 06:30 PM
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Have you considered taking a different route for your return back to Phoenix? You said you are taking I10 to I20 to get there but on your way back how about taking Rt 287 to I40 in Amarillo then stopping by Santa Fe in New Mexico on your way back. You would drive through a really beautiful stretch of the road around the Arizona/New Mexico border and could stop off at the Petrified Forest and Meteor Crater as you continue back toward Flagstaff where you could take I17 back to Phoenix.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 07:31 PM
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Sounds like quite a road trip!

On the way from Abilene on 1-20, be prepared for some road construction. It's not bad but some of the exits have been blocked, so make sure you have plenty of gas and take advantage of restrooms just in case you get "stuck" on the freeway for a while.

An interesting stop on 1-20 ia a "ghost" mining town called Thurber. Your landmark is a big smoke stack, with the Smoke Stack restaurant behind it. The food is pretty good and the menus detail the town's history. If you ask, the owners will give you a key and you can have a look at the old Thurber cemetery down a small road behind the restaurant. There's also a new museum across the freeway, but I haven't been there.

McKinney has a neat old downtown and some antique places. You might get some good ideas on things to do by stopping in some of the shops.

There are so many choices in Dallas that your best bet is probably to pick up a copy of the Friday Dallas Morning News, which includes a decent weekend entertainment section and listings for lots of area attractions. The website guidelive.com might be helpful, too.

Have fun!

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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 04:33 AM
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The sand hills is the Monahans Sand Hills State Park, about 30 miles west of Odessa on I20.

Odessa itself is not one of my favorite cities, but you might check out the President's museum and the replica of Shakespeare's Globe Theater. Midland, about 20 miles east of Odessa, has the excellent Permian Basin geology museum and a good aircraft museum, the CAF.

When you are driving down I20, you will begin to believe the earth is flat, but the town of Big Spring will give you some relief. The hills are barely visible from the highway, but if you go into Big Spring itself, to the Big Spring State Park, you will gradually climb up a steep hill about 200-300 feet ablve the surrounding terrain. The view is, to say the least, spectacular.

Abilene is more interesting than its reputation. Just east of the downtown area is a large museum devoted to the regional history of West Texas. We're not talking about spurs in glass cases, but many audio-visual performances, many of them holographic characters describing the lives they led on the frontier. No kidding, this museum is a must-see... it's something you'd expect to see in Disneyland.

Downtown Abilene itself is surprisingly quaint... there is an old hotel made into a quite nice art and history museum, and a building on the next block that houses an artists' cooperative. The downtown even has a luxury chocolate shop near the railroad depot.

McKinney is now just another subdivision of Dallas, but its downtown is particularly alive, with a lot of browsing opportunities. It's on US75, which is a straight shot to downtown Dallas, about 30 miles away. The Dallas-Fort Worth area has 6 million people, and that high of a population generates many things to see and do. The less-than-good news for you is that most of them are in central Dallas or in Fort Worth.

Enjoy your trip.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 07:40 AM
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Balmorhea and Ft. Davis State Parks; the Gage Hotel in Marathin and Big Bend National Park along the way.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 11:34 AM
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Lo siento, the Gage Hot is in Marathon.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 12:18 PM
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The memorial to the victims of the Oklahoma City bombing is quite moving. The museum seems very nicely done, but I admit that we didn't go in. It was hard enough seeing the little chairs representing the day care center kids who were killed; I just couldn't stand to see pictures and read about them, too.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 12:30 PM
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mp,
Kind of like the concentration camps in Europe and the Holocaust Museum in DC.
Never forget history.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 01:36 PM
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I knew that seeing the little chairs was enough for me. (I am a person who has never seen Schindler's List, because I was haunted for days just by 30 second clips that I would see.)Anyway, my point to the OP is that the memorial is very nicely done.
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Old Jan 29th, 2007, 01:59 PM
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Just a note to keep an eye on the weather. We drove to TX from So Cal in December. We ended up going I- 10 both ways, instead of returning via I- 40 because of snow. FYI, we like Las Cruces off of I- 10. It's close to El Paso, but IMO a much better place then EP to get a bite to eat or stay over.
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 06:18 AM
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I'm a big fan of the sign that says "Now Leaving Texas"
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 06:59 AM
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"...I'm a big fan of the sign that says "Now Leaving Texas"



"...I'm a big fan of the sign that says "Now Leaving Texas..."

So am I. It tells the rifraff how to get out of the state.





..."
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