What the State of Texas Is Known For

Texas is a state that stands out in many ways.  A phrase that often comes to mind when someone thinks of Texas is "Everything's bigger in Texas."  This is a fairly accurate statement.  The King Ranch is larger than the state of Rhode Island and the capitol building in Austin is taller than the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

"Let 'er Ride" by Dan Ballard

Cowboys (originally vaqueros) are an iconic symbol of southwestern culture and an image that stands out when thinking of Texans.  Many that are not employed cattle herders have a penchant for the requisite western wear - 10 gallon hats, boots and big belt buckles.  This is commonly worn all over the state carrying on the cowboy image.  You can get an extra big dose of this in the rodeo circuits that thrive in Texas culture.  Akin to the cowboys/ranch hands are their bosses the rich ranchers such as the ones portrayed in television's "Dallas" or the film "Giant."  These are the well-dressed cowboys.

Texas is known for having one of the healthiest economies in the U.S.  Of the top 10 largest cities in the country 3 belong to Texas.  The energy industry, a.k.a Big Oil, plays a leading role in pumping money into and providing jobs in the state.  After all it is no coincidence that petroleum is also referred to as "Texas Tea."

"Houston we have a problem"... one can't help but associate that phrase with the largest city in Texas.  NASA's Johnson Space Center has been and continues to be home to mission control, astronaut training, and monitoring of space exploration.  Even though the shuttle program was retired in 2010 Houston, TX is still a hub of the space program and aeronautic research of today.

Music of the Lone Star State stands out when representing its culture.  Names such as Stevie Ray Vaughn, Willie Nelson, ZZ Top, George Strait and Pantera are just a few representative of Texas music.  Honky Tonk, a rhythm-heavy style of country music was developed in Texas.  The capital city Austin is also dubbed the Live Music Capital of the World and hosts internationally renowned annual concert events and festivals.

If you have ever been to Texas or heard talk from someone who has you might find yourself hungry for the cuisine.  Predominately that is BBQ, Chili, and Tex Mex.  The Czech influence in central Texas is present in the popular sweet kolache pastries.  These also have a savory version with the sausage kolache, usually with smoked sausage and optional jalapenos and cheese.  These are a staple item found all over the state as are the breakfast tacos.

Aside from the people and culture of Texas there are also the natural features, like the wide open spaces, which is only one descriptor as the lay of the land varies as does the weather which is known for extremes.  Texas is the only U.S. state that has every type of regional climate zone - coastal, plains, forest, mountains and desert. On the extremes note, Texas has the highest incidence of tornadoes annually and is equally prone to drought and flooding.

The great state of Texas has so many identifiable traits a shelf of articles could be dedicated to going over them all.  This is simply a list of what tends to be foremost in the mind of people having a moment to reflect on what they know about it.  Sometimes it seems like a country within a country with its strong cultural identity.  Whatever one's predisposition is, there is certainly something for everyone in Texas.

© Becca Knight


Rebecca has lived in Texas for over 20 years. Her location informs much of what she knows and is why she decided to create this blog.
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