Fort Worth, Texas is a vibrant city with an impressive selection of things to see and do. Best things to do in Fort Worth, TX for couples include the Kimbell Art Museum, an Opera or Symphony Orchestra performance at Bass Hall, The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and Sundance Square. Fun family attractions in Fort Worth, TX include the Fort Worth Zoo and the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History.
We recommend that you call the attractions and restaurants ahead of your visit to confirm current opening times.
1. Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Fort Worth, Texas
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Established in 1934 and located on Botanic Garden Boulevard, the Fort Worth Botanic Garden is the oldest botanic garden in Texas and features over 2,500 species of native and exotic plants in 21 specialty gardens. Some of these beautifully manicured gardens include a “Back Yard Vegetable Garden,” a beautiful vegetable garden that hosts a variety of community-based educational programs, a 10,000-square-foot conservatory which houses tropical species such as orchids and bromeliads, and a unique Fragrance Garden that the visually-impaired can enjoy.
The Fort Worth Botanic Garden is one of the best things to do in Fort Worth for families and couples. Special gardens include the 7-acre Fort Worth Japanese Garden with koi ponds, bridges, waterfalls, pavilions, a Zen Garden, and a teahouse, as well as the Lower Rose Garden, which was inspired by an ancient villa in Italy. An admission fee is charged for the Conservatory and Japanese Garden; the other gardens are free.
3220 Botanic Garden Blvd., Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-392-5510
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2. Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District, Fort Worth, TX
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Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Fort Worth Stockyards is a historic district in the heart of Fort Worth as well as a testament to the livestock industry in Texas. Once the last major stop for rest and supplies for the cattle drovers heading the cattle up the Chisholm Trail to the railheads, Fort Worth served as a major center for the livestock industry with the Fort Worth Stockyards at its center.
Today, the 98-acre (40 ha) district celebrates this long and historical tradition with a variety of attractions focused on the cattle industry for the public to enjoy, from championship rodeo and Longhorn cattle drives to gunslinger shows and stagecoaches.
500 N.E. 23rd Street, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-626-7921
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3. Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas
© Kimbell Art Museum
The Kimbell Art Museum is a comprehensive art museum that houses a small, but superb collection of 350 works of art, as well as an extensive research library and various educational programs. Designed by renowned architect Louis I. Kahn, the building is recognized as a significant work of architecture, particularly for the natural, silvery light that flows across the vaulted gallery ceilings.
The museum’s collection consists of European works from the classical period, including Gainsborough, Fra Angelico, and Mantegna, as well as antiquities from Egypt, Greece, and Rome. An Asian collection features paintings, sculptures bronzes, and ceramics while famous works by Picasso, Monet, Matisse, and Mondrian make for a special treat. The museum boasts a substantial research library that consists of nearly 60,000 books, periodicals, and auction catalogs, resources that are readily available to faculty members, graduate students, and art historians.
3333 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-332-8451
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4. Fort Worth Zoo
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Established in 1909 with only a few animals to show, the Fort Worth Zoo has since transformed into a nationally ranked facility and is now home to over 7,000 native and exotic animals in a variety of habitats. Texas’ oldest zoo has more than 16 permanent exhibits, including Texas Wild! – An eight-acre complex that houses seven distinct exhibits related to the fauna and flora of Texas.
Other habitats and exhibits include Raptor Canyon, World of Primates, Meerkat Mounds, Parrot Paradise, the Great Barrier Reef, and the Museum of Living Art (MOLA). The zoo features state-of-the-art facilities, as well as pleasant walkways, shade structures, walkways, picnic areas, and some food outlets.
1989 Colonial Parkway, Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-759-7555
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5.Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall, Fort Worth, Texas
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The Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall provides a state-of-the-art location for the various major performing arts organizations of Fort Worth, as well as a premiere venue for other events, shows, and attractions for the public to enjoy.
The Hall is home to resident companies, including the Fort Worth Opera and Symphony Orchestra, the Cliburn, and the Texas Ballet Theater, and it hosts a range of traveling performance throughout the year. If you are looking for romantic date night ideas in Fort Worth, watch a performance at the Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall. The owners of Bass Hall, Performing Arts Fort Worth, offer educational and community-based projects at no cost to children in grades one through twelve to inspire and encourage an interest in the arts.
4th and Calhoun Streets, Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-212-4325
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6. Cowtown Cycle Party, Fort Worth, Texas
© Cowtown Cycle Party
Cowtown Cycle Party offers a unique and fun way to experience Fort Worth. The Cowtown Cycle Party is a multi-seated bar on wheels that can be rented by groups of up to 16 people who can ride around town, check out all the best attractions, and make new friends at the same time.
There are no set routes on the two-hour tour, but it often covers popular areas of the city such as Sundance Square Plaza, Magnolia Avenue, and the Fort Worth Water Garden, where you can experience a variety of historical and cultural points of interest, beautiful architecture, and an array of restaurants, bars, and cafés.
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7.Sundance Square, Fort Worth, Texas
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Spanning 35 blocks in Downtown Fort Worth, Sundance Square is one of the finest entertainment and shopping districts in the Southwest. Made up of over 40 buildings both modern and historic that house an array of entertainment, retail, and dining venues, the Square offers myriad things to see and do, from enjoying casual coffee in a sunny courtyard to fine dining in an elegant restaurant.
Home to a range of museums and art galleries, the Square also allows visitors to enjoy live music, live theater, and other outdoor and indoor events that are held there throughout the year. Sundance Square also offers a range of business and hospitality services, including financial, health, and personal services.
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8. Things to Do in Fort Worth: Velvet Taco
© Velvet Taco
Velvet Taco is a forward-thinking taqueria with excellent food, sublime margaritas, and late night hours. Offering all-time Mexican favorites such as handmade tortillas and tacos made with real corn and packed with pulled, slow-roasted chicken, pure beef burgers, shrimp and grits and freshly-made salad accompanied by a range of handcrafted margaritas and sangrias using fresh fruit and sorbets, Velvet Taco is the go-to place for early diners and late-night revelers alike. Grab a whole rotisserie chicken with delicious sides of nachos, roasted potatoes or crisp tots for a night in with friends. Next read: TX beaches
2700 W. Seventh St., Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-887-9810
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9. Things to Do in Fort Worth: Amon Carter Museum of American of Art
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The Amon Carter Museum of American Art is dedicated to showcasing masterpieces of American art through a diverse array of exhibitions, displays, programs, and publications. Established by Amon G. Carter Sr. over 60 years ago to house his collection of paintings and sculptures by Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell, the museum has since become a tribute to the finest examples of American art.
The permanent collection is made up of paintings, sculptures, illustrated books, photographs, and works on paper, and the museum showcases a range of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. The Amon Carter Museum of American of Art is one of the best things to do in Fort Worth for art lovers. Complementing the museum’s excellent art collection is a research library that offers an extensive range of materials on American art, photography, and history from the early nineteenth century to the present.
3501 Camp Bowie Blvd, Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-738-1933
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10. The Modern, Fort Worth, Texas
© The Modern
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth is dedicated to the presentation of artworks from the post–World War II era until today and features over 3,000 objects, ranging from paintings, sculptures, and videos to photographs and prints. Consisting mainly of works collected between between 1945 and the present, the museum’s collection represents genres and international movements such as Abstract Expressionism, Minimalism and Post-Minimalism, Conceptualism, and American Pop, with a particular focus on Pop, Minimalism, and German Art.
The museum endeavors to promote understanding and interest in art and the artists behind the masterpieces through an array of outstanding exhibitions, displays, educational programs, classes, lectures, and workshops.
3200 Darnell Street, Fort Worth, Texas, Phone: 817-738-9215
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11.SeaQuest Fort Worth
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SeaQuest Fort Worth is an interactive aquarium in Fort Worth’s Ridgmar Mall and takes visitors on a journey through the “depths of the seas,” deserts, and rainforests. SeaQuest is filled with exciting and interesting activities and exhibits for kids of all ages and families, such as taking pictures with snakes, marveling at sharks, encountering caimans, feeding toucans, and touching stingrays. Exhibits take guests through the Amazon River, the Great Wall of China, a fishing village in Iceland, and beyond. SeaQuest also includes a 36,000-gallon aquarium exhibit with tropical fish, stingrays, and reef sharks, as well as walk-in aviaries.
1974 Green Oaks Rd, Fort Worth, TX 76116, 817-731-5357
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12.Sid Richardson Museum, Fort Worth, TX
© Sid Richardson Museum
Located in the historic Sundance Square, the Sid Richardson Museum features a collection of permanent and special exhibitions of paintings from the American West, including works by premier Western artists such as Charles M. Russell and Frederic Remington. Opened in 1982 to celebrate the extensive collection of Sid Richardson, the museum aims to inspire, educate, and engage audiences through exceptional works that reflect both the romance and reality of the American West.
Other featured artists of the collection include Edwin W. Deming, Peter Hurd, Frank Tenney Johnson, and Peter Moran. The museum welcomes over 40,000, visitors annually, and admission to the museum is free.
309 Main St., Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-332-6554
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13. Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Clay Pigeon
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Clay Pigeon is a casual restaurant that serves a seasonal, locally sourced menu of delightful made-from-scratch cuisine for lunch and dinner. The expert team of Chef Marcus Paslay and his wife manage the restaurant, and they strive to make everything in-house, from the freshly baked bread to the house-made charcuterie and ice cream.
Menus include small plate dishes such as fire-roasted bone marrow and foie gras torchon, while lamb chops, grilled duck breast, and prime cut steaks serve as some of the delectable main dishes. Enjoy your meal with a handcrafted cocktail or a specially chosen local wine from the comprehensive wine list.
2731 White Settlement Rd, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-882-8065
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14.Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge (FWNC&R), Fort Worth, Texas
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The Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge (FWNC&R) is a beautifully preserved wilderness comprised of forests, prairies, and wetlands that offer the public a relaxing environment in which to appreciate nature and the great outdoors. One of the largest city-owned nature centers in the United States, the center spans over 3,600 acres and features over 20 miles of hiking trails for walking, jogging, hiking, and mountain biking.
Bursting with natural fauna and flora, the FWNC&R offers a variety of educational programs for the whole family, including lectures on the natural history of North Central Texas, nature photography classes, guided hikes and canoe trips through the wilderness, and exhilarating evening walks.
9601 Fossil Ridge Road, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-392-7410
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15.Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Doc B’s
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What started in 2013 in Chicago as a counter-service grill grew quickly into a mini-chain of elegant table-service modern restaurants, with two in Chicago, three in Florida, and three in Texas. The Fort Worth spot is one of the newest, a lively, bright place with clean lines, a long line of banquettes, and a lovely oval bar topped with stone. The kitchen is visible through the glass. The tables are topped with a butcher block that adds warmth. The walls are decorated with stunning black and white photos of old Chicago. The eclectic menu includes everything from large, complex salads and interesting sandwiches to meatballs and wok bowls. Leave some space for the house Key lime pie.
5253 Marathon Avenue, Fort Worth, TX 76107
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16.Log Cabin Village, Fort Worth, TX
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The Log Cabin Village is a living history museum devoted to the preservation of Texas heritage. The Village consists of six beautifully restored log cabins that date back to the mid-1800s and offer an inside look at life on the nineteenth-century North Texas frontier.
Log cabins are furnished with authentic artifacts to display different aspects of pioneer life, and exhibition structures include a quaint schoolhouse, a water-powered gristmill, a blacksmith shop, and several log home settings surrounding a herb garden. Aiming to encourage an interest in history and build a connection between the present and past through the collection and preservation of artifacts, the Log Cabin Village provides a fantastic sensory experience that should not be missed.
2100 Log Cabin Village Ln., Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-392-5881
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17. Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: C.R. Smith Museum
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Named after aviation pioneer and former president of American Airlines Cyrus Rowlett Smith, the C.R. Smith Museum was built to honor his accomplishments in the field of aviation. Opened in 1993, the museum’s collection consists of a variety of artifacts on permanent display, the centerpiece of which is the beautifully restored 1940 Douglas DC-3, Flagship Knoxville. The museum also features the Flightlab, and the History Wall, among other exhibits.
The museum hosts special exhibits throughout the year, some of which have included LEGO Travel Adventure, Super Kids Save the World, and Zulu Patrol. In the new theater, visitors can enjoy a screening of the original film An American Journey, which documents the lives of American Airlines/American Eagle personnel and their contributions to the airline industry.
4601 Texas HWY 360 at FAA Rd, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-967-1560
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18.Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Pho District
© Pho District
Located on 7th Street, Pho District pays homage Vietnamese food by creating a unique culinary fusion which bursts with flavors and regional influences from France, China, India, and South East Asian. The menu features a range of Vietnamese specialties, including Banh Mi, Pho, vermicelli, rice plates, spring rolls, and a special vegan menu. Desserts are sweet and sticky while the happy hour menu offers a variety of small plates and an extensive list of cocktails, wine, and craft beer.
2401 W 7th Street, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-862-9988
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19. Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
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The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is an outstanding science and history museum that aims to provide the community with an extraordinary learning environment in which visitors can appreciate an array of outstanding geological, biological, and zoological collections.
Designed by famed architects Legoretta + Legoretta of Mexico City, the museum plays host to a range of exhibits such as DinoLabs and DinoDig, Innovation Studios, the Children’s Museum, Energy Blast, and the CattleRaiser’s Museum, as well as interactive, hands-on exhibits like DinoDig, ExploraZone, and KIDSPACE. Visitors can also take in a show at the state-of-the-art IMAX theater and find extensive material for research purposes in the William Green Memorial Library. If you are looking for fun things to do in Fort Worth, Texas with kids, the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is a great place to visit.
1600 Gendy Street, Fort Worth, TX
20.Grace, Fort Worth, Texas
Grace offers its patrons an unrivaled dining experience in the heart of Fort Worth. Managed by Adam Jones, the city’s renowned hospitality and service host, the restaurant serves a menu of classic modern American fare. Award-winning Chef Blaine Staniford creates sophisticated dishes with seasonal flavors that emphasize purity and simplicity – think chilled carrot soup or fresh scallops with caviar butter sauce – which are complemented by an outstanding wine list. Relax on the lovely outdoor terrace as you sip handcrafted cocktails and enjoy something from the simple snack menu, or enjoy a bottle of Old and New World wine from the temperature controlled wine cellar.
777 Main Street, Fort Worth, TX, Phone: 817-877-3388
21.Four Day Weekend, Fort Worth, Texas
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Based in Sundance Square, Four Day Weekend is the longest-running show in the Southwest. This critically-acclaimed, award-winning comedy show runs every Friday and Saturday night at a theater on Houston Street in downtown Fort Worth. It is astoundingly popular and has been voted as one of “Fort Worth’s Greatest Ambassadors.”
The show is linked to a training center, which was founded to nurture and develop a growing interest in the art of improvisation and aims to develop the improvisation skills of all its participants. The show runs for about an hour and 45 minutes with a 15-minute intermission, and the theater has a full bar service; drinks can be enjoyed during the show (Phone: 817-226-4329).
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© JFK Tribute
The JFK Tribute in Fort Worth, Texas is located at General Worth Square and marks the occasion and place of President John F. Kennedy’s historic visit to the city. The president gave an impromptu speech on November 22 of 1963 at the historic Hotel Texas’ front steps. Situated within an elegant plaza, the JFK Tribute features a bronze statue of President John F. Kennedy of heroic scale, which was created by Lawrence Ludtke. The granite plaza also includes quotes from several of his historic speeches and photographic displays. Visitors can use the guided audio tour to enhance their visit.
916 Main St, Fort Worth, TX 76102, 817-870-1692
23.National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame
© National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth is dedicated to celebrating and honoring women of both the past and present who have exemplified the independence, resilience, and courage that helped in shaping the western United States, as well as to create an appreciation for the spirit and ideals of self-reliance those women inspire. This unique museum is the only one of its kind in the world and features a number of interactive exhibit galleries consisting of artifacts from its permanent collection, archives and research library, a gift shop, two theaters, a traveling exhibit gallery, and more.
1720 Gendy St, Fort Worth, TX 76107, 817-336-4475
24.Fort Worth Aviation Museum
© Fort Worth Aviation Museum
The Fort Worth Aviation Museum in Fort Worth, Texas shares the stories of the aviation accomplishments and heritage of North Texas since the year 1911. This museum collection consists of over twenty warbirds dating back to 1943 through present day, including a United States Navy Blue Angel F/A-18 Hornet, displayed outdoors. Among the indoor displays in the Fort Worth Aviation Museum are computer flight simulators, a T-38 cockpit simulator, the Forward Air Controllers Museum, and the B-36 Peacemaker Museum. Friendly guides are available to give visitors personalized tours, and all active duty military, along with their families, get free admission.
3300 Ross Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76106, 855-733-8627
25 Best Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas
- Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Courtesy of Michael Longoria - Fotolia.com
- Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District, Fort Worth, TX, Photo: Courtesy of Melastmohican - Fotolia.com
- Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Kimbell Art Museum
- Fort Worth Zoo, Photo: Courtesy of balloon dude - Fotolia.com
- Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Courtesy of Empath - Fotolia.com
- Cowtown Cycle Party, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Cowtown Cycle Party
- Sundance Square, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Courtesy of George Wada - Fotolia.com
- Things to Do in Fort Worth: Velvet Taco, Photo: Velvet Taco
- Things to Do in Fort Worth: Amon Carter Museum of American of Art, Photo: Courtesy of George Wada - Fotolia.com
- The Modern, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: The Modern
- SeaQuest Fort Worth, Photo: Andrey Armyagov/stock.adobe.com
- Sid Richardson Museum, Fort Worth, TX, Photo: Sid Richardson Museum
- Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Clay Pigeon, Photo: Clay Pigeon
- Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge (FWNC&R), Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Courtesy of eajacques - Fotolia.com
- Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Doc B’s, Photo: Doc B’s
- Log Cabin Village, Fort Worth, TX, Photo: Courtesy of krosbona - Fotolia.com
- Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: C.R. Smith Museum, Photo: Courtesy of h368k742 - Fotolia.com
- Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Pho District, Photo: Pho District
- Things to Do in Fort Worth, Texas: Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, Photo: Courtesy of goro20 - Fotolia.com
- Grace, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Grace
- Four Day Weekend, Fort Worth, Texas, Photo: Courtesy of Denis Topal - Fotolia.com
- JFK Tribute, Photo: JFK Tribute
- National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame, Photo: National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame
- Fort Worth Aviation Museum, Photo: Fort Worth Aviation Museum
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of leekris - Fotolia.com
Attraction Spotlight: National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas is a one of a kind experience. The museum is the only one in the world that honors the women of the American West and preserves their history through interactive exhibits and galleries.
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame began with a visionary group dedicated to preserving the history and accomplishments of the women of the American West in 1975. The first space was in the Deaf Smith County Library and by 1982, with the collection growing, the museum was moved into a private home. The search for a new permanent home began in earnest in 1993. Lead by Margaret Formby, the museum Director, the mission of the museum became one of sharing history, not just preserving it.
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame had its grand opening on June 9, 2002 in the Fort Worth Cultural District on the museum of Science and History Campus. This permanent facility was designed by David. M. Schwarz with wild rose finials and sculptural architecture. The building was also designed to be expanded easily in the future. Renovations were done in 2015 with more renovations planned.
There are fees for both parking and admission at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. Parking is free for museum members and based on availability. The museum has varying hours depending on the season with hours and prices listed online.
The Collections in the National Cowgirl Museum holdings document and preserve the history of the women who impacted the American West. The women honored in the collection exemplified the pioneering spirit of the time and made significant accomplishments in history. Artists, ranchers, photographers, athletes, and many other groups of women are part of the artifacts and documents in the collection. The women honored in the Hall of Fame can be viewed online as well.
Artifacts- There are more than 5,000 objects in this collection that is on display to the public through curated exhibitions. Most of the artifacts in the museum belonged to the women honored in the Hall of Fame. This collection documents the history of the early pioneering days and westward expansion of the United States and cowgirl’s effect on pop culture today. Annie Oakley’s wedding ring, clothing designed by Nudie Cohn and weapons owned by infamous cowgirls are a few highlights of the artifacts collection.
Photographs- National Cowgirl Hall of Fame members, historic cowgirls, and other images make up the historic and modern 6,000-piece photography collection. Noted as one of the most comprehensive collections of photographs of American west woman, visitors can see photographs of Annie Oakley, Rodeo photographs and much more.
Library and Archives- The contributions of the women of the American west are documents and collected in the archives collection at the research library. These documents are noncirculating and are available by appointment to qualified researchers, scholars, educators, and students. There are more than 2,000 books both by and honoring the Hall of Fame members, the history of women pioneers, and the ranching and performance industries. Sound recordings and videos are available through the archival collection and previously unpublished works, scrapbooks oral histories, and other mementos from the 200 hall of fame members.
The collection is divided into exhibit galleries:
· Kinship with the Land
· Hall of Fame Gallery and Honorees
· Hitting the Mark: Cowgirl and Wild West Shows
· Grand Rotunda
· Annie W. Marion Gallery
· Claiming the Spotlight Gallery
· Into the Arena
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame provides many educational resources to the community on the history of women in the American West in addition to the exhibitions that are curated by museum staff.
School Tours- Students are welcomed to the museum and hall of fame for field trips. Tours can be scheduled at least 5 days in advance.
Community Groups- Community groups such as Girl Scouts can book tours or participate in patch programs at the museum. There is an official National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame patch for Girl Scouts.
Outreach- The National Cowgirl Museum can come to the community through video conferences that engage in distance learning, and the travelling trunk—available for rent to educator use in classrooms. The museum also has staff available for speaking or lecture events.
Camps- Summer camps are offered at the museum with different themes. Camps are held on Fridays. Registration is required and camps are geared towards ages 6-10 although younger or older siblings have opportunities to join as well. Details on camps can be found on the museum website.
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame gift shop is available online through the museum website. Visitors will find merchandise and gifts relating to the southwest and cowgirl history including art, jewelry, books, and clothing.
1720 Gendy Street, Fort Worth, Texas, 76107, Phone: 817-336-4475
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Attraction Spotlight: Kimbell Art Museum
Kimbell Art Museum in ort Worth, Texas began as the private collection of Kay and Velma Kimbell as well as Dr. and Mrs. Coleman Carter, Kay’s sister. The four friends established The Kimbell Art Foundation in 1936 and collected mostly French and British portraits of the 18th and 19th centuries.
At the time of Mr. Kimbell’s death in 1964, the foundation had amassed 260 paintings and 86 other pieces of art. The Kimbell estate was willed to the foundation with the clear instruction to start a museum to bring art to Fort. Worth and the State of Texas. Velma donated her half of the estate to the foundation as well a week after Kay’s death.
The foundation named an executive director in 1966 and together with the nine members of the board of directors, they began to plan and blueprint what would become Kimbell Art Museum. The museum would be first class and only accept the most aesthetically pleasing and highest quality art to the collection. The Kimbell collection is now around 350 pieces representing a wide variety of time periods and historical importance.
The museum broke ground in 1966, being designed by Louis Kahn. After opening in fall of 1972, the building was mused as one of the finest Art Museums to ever be built and is considered the masterpiece of Kahn’s career. The museum went against popular trend and allowed the galleries to be flooded with natural light and garden elements. This became quite a unique and admired design because the museum was seen differently depending upon time of day and season.
The museum has three levels. The subfloor basement is not accessible by visitors. The lower lever has the entry way gallery, conservation labs, shipping and receiving areas and offices. The upper level is the main attraction and is comprised of the two main galleries, café, gift shop, library, two garden courtyards, and auditorium.
The Piano Pavilion
In November, 2013, another museum building was added to the property so that the Kimbell could expand in everything it could offer the community. The permanent collection at The Kimbell had large parts of it stored away whenever the museum would host an exhibit. The Piano Pavilion was built to allow the Kimbell to be the permanent collection’s home while seasonal exhibits would be set up in the Pavilion. This new building also had classrooms that are part of their full scale education program, a considerably large auditorium, a library and underground parking.
Comprised of only around 350 pieces, the Kimbell Collection is smaller than most art museums. The mission of The Kimbell was always to provide quality over quantity and this collection has been deemed one of the highest quality collections on display.
The Kimbell Foundation have been very selective about the works displayed in the museum. Taking into account the collections at other museums, The Kimbell does not have anything that is from beyond the mid-20th century out of respect to the modern art museum and no American art as that is the focus of another art museum in the area. The Kimbell has some of the world’s most ancient antique art pieces dating back to the third millennium B.C. in Egypt as well as from ancient Assyria, Greece and Rome.
European Art is a compilation of 17th and 18th century works from the Italian renaissance in the 1800’s and painting and sculpture from Britain, France, Italy, Spain, The Netherlands, and Finland.
Asian Art has a wide assortment of different mediums of artistic works. There are bronze statues, ceramics and pottery, paintings, and more from Thailand, China, Cambodia, Tibet, Nepal, India, Japan and Korea. Many different cultures are featured in this collection.
Pre-Columbian Art shows pieces from Ancient South American and Mexican cultures such as the Mayans, Olmec, and Aztecs. Many of the pieces are stone, jade, bronze and ceramic. There are also a few pieces by the Conte and Wari ancient civilizations.
African and Oceanic Art focuses on the art of West and Central Africa. Most pieces are made out of wood while some are bronze and terracotta as well. The Oceanic Art is a few pieces from the Maori people.
All of the Collections are located in the Kimbell Art Museum and can also be viewed online. The Kimbell Foundation has taken great strides to provide the most accurate provenance possible for each art work in their collection. Some of these pieces can be traced all the way back to the first buyer and some are particularly interesting because of the change of ownership during World War II Nazi era.
The Kimbell Art Museum is dedicated to enriching the Fort Worth community through art and hosts several educational opportunities for adult and child learners.
The Buffet Restaurant is located at The Kimbell and serves lunch, desserts, and Friday evening dinner. There is also a café in The Pavilion that serves sandwiches, light snacks, desserts, and beverages. The cafe’s hours extend past the restaurant’s so grabbing a snack is always easy when visiting The Kimbell.
When visiting the Kimbell, there will be public guided tours scheduled throughout the day. These tours require no additional tickets or fees. Tours will be either the Permanent Collection, Special Exhibitions, or a tour specifically to educate on the architecture and history of the two buildings with tours of both.
Conservation and Research at The Kimbell
Louis Kahn designed a room in the museum to be specifically used for treating and examining paintings. The room is filled with bright natural light and visitors in the East Gallery can watch the happenings in the Conservation Room through a large window. Kimbell staff uses this space to restore and preserve important art works.
The Research department at The Kimbell frequently uses the conservation room as well, however, their primary focus is finding the provenance behind each art work at the museum, dating and authenticating various works.
3333 Camp Bowie Blvd, Fort Worth, TX 76107, Phone: 817-332-8451
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