A Local’s Guide to Lubbock

A Local’s Guide

“If you were going to take a trip to Lubbock, Texas, wouldn’t you want to know where the locals go? Where do they go to listen to up-and-coming musicians, and what are their favorite places to take family and friends?”

In the monthly Live Love Lubbock video series, Lubbock locals dish on their favorite things to see, eat and do in Lubbock. Here’s a rundown of some of their favorites.

Where to Eat

Lubbock is a city known for authentic barbecue and Tex-Mex cuisine. Local gallery owner Larry Simmons prefers Taqueria Jalisco, while arts promoter Tonja Hagy prefers El Paisano, where she orders a queso-smothered smoked brisket burrito. Other local faves include burger joints like Christakis Burgers (try a burger topped with pastrami, Swiss cheese and jalapenos), Lite Bite Mediterranean with tasty gyros and an owner who’s there daily and the Craft House Gastropub with creative food choices like the kobe beef corndog. Paul Hunton, a filmmaker and production director of Lubbock’s public broadcasting station, recommends 50 Yard-Line Steakhouse. “It almost feels like you’re in a sports bar, but it’s an elegant and classy place to go,” he says. He likes the chicken fried steak and raves about the basket of blueberry muffins served when you first sit down.

What Events to Attend

Bo Garza, a local Lubbock musician and DJ, says the can’t-miss event every year is Grape Day, which takes place at Llano Estacado Winery every October. It features food vendors anda variety of wines to taste, as well as live music and entertainment. Hagy recommends the Summer Showcase Concert Series, which takes place on Thursdays from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Buddy Holly Center during the summer months. The weekly concerts feature local musicians, and the event is free to the public. Other events loved by locals are the Downtown Farmers Market, Texas Tech University football games, wine classes at Funky Door Wine & Bistro and the 4th on Broadway celebration on Independence Day every year.

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Buddy Holly Summer Showcase

What to Do with the Kids

Amy Punchard, a Lubbock local with two young kids, recommends the Science Spectrum & OMNI Theater for a day to explore the dinosaur exhibits, area where the kids can play with bubbles and an Imax theater. She also likes the Stars and Strips Drive-in Theater with an on-site 50s cafe. The kids order popcorn and candy, but Punchard likes the cafe’s Chihuahua sandwich stacked with chili, pimento cheese, cabbage and jalapeno poppers. Other family favorites include the National Ranching Heritage Center, which features historic ranch houses from all over the country. “Ranching is so rooted in our culture and who we are in West Texas,” says local Taylor Perio. Two other fun options are the Silent Wings Museum with displays of military gliders, and The Range, a family-friendly golf driving range with pizza, washers tournaments, cold beer and places for the kids to run.

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Stars & Stripes Drive-In Theater

Where to Go for a Drink

One of Lubbock’s famous favorites is Chimy’s Cerveceria, a laidback Mexican restaurant that serves a slew of margaritas in schooners named after car makes such as the Lexus, Cadillac, Benz and Porsche. They pair perfectly with a plate of nachos. Andy Wilkinson, a notable singer and writer in Lubbock, likes Triple J Chophouse & Brew Co. for beer that’s brewed on-site. He prefers the porter. He also likes Harrigan’s, which feels like a throwback to the 1970s. “You expect people to come in in leisure suits and pointy collars,” he says. Perio likes La Diosa Cellars’ sangria, which can be ordered in pitchers that are “really affordable and a little dangerous,” she jokes. Other drink recommendations: order the Texas tea at Local Bar and Grill, a Moscow Mule or glass of wine at Manna Bread & Wine, or a Chemex coffee at Gatsby’s coffeehouse while listening to live music.

What to Do With Friends

“This is wine country,” says Terri Duncan, a longtime Lubbock resident. Lubbock has five area wineries, including Llano Estacado Winery, CapRock Winery and McPherson Cellars. If you’re looking for a day out shopping with friends, put shops like TC Elli’s and Chrome on your list. Chrome is “very fashion forward,” says Perio. “Everything that they sell is very right now.” And if it’s a day of playing outdoors that you’re looking for, go where local Texas Tech graduate Keith Patrick goes: The Rawls Course, which Golfweek named the No. 2 Best Course in Texas in 2013.

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Llano Estacado Winery

Where to Appreciate the Music and Arts

“One of the most underutilized things to see is the public art collection at Texas Tech,” says Larry Simmons. The collection has 25 pieces of world-renowned artistry, including bronze figures, kinetic sculptures and other pieces made from stone, metal and glass. Another spot that certainly has earned its worthy reputation is the Buddy Holly Center that features collections of the Lubbock musician’s music and promotes his legacy. Lubbock’s First Friday Art Trail takes place on the first Friday of each month 12 months a year, sending visitors on a self-guided tour through area galleries to enjoy live music and art. They can also jump on free trolleys that circulate through downtown Lubbock. The trail features as many as 20 venues.