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Named after Sam Houston, general of Texas army that won independence from
Mexico, and ;president of Republic of Texas. The city, largest in Texas
and fourth largest in nation, has experienced ;phenomenal growth since
a small riverboat landing was established on Buffalo Bayou by Allen brothers
in August 1836. Today the metropolis is industrial and financial hub for
much of the state. it is one of the nation's largest seaports, and headquarters
of Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center.
Houston lies on I-10, a segment of the Ports to Plains Highway connecting
the state's heartland to coastal ports.
Institutions of higher learning include Baylor College of Medicine,
Houston Baptist University, Rice University, South Texas College of Law,
South Texas Junior College, Texas Southern University, University of Houston,
University of Houston Junior College, Texas Southern University, University
of Houston Downtown, University of St. Thomas and University of Texas Health
and Science Center.
Major annual events include the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo in
late Feb. and early Mar., largest livestock exposition in the state with
championship cowboys and popular entertainers.
Houston International Festival each April celebrates the performing
and visual arts with 20 day outdoor festival of multicultural music, dance,
arts and crafts, and food.
ALLEN'S LANDING; OLD MARKET SQUARE
ANHEUSER-BUSCH BREWERY TOUR
ASTRODOME CONVENTION CENTER
BAYOU BEND COLLECTION
CHRIST CHURCH CATHEDRAL
CONTEMPORARY ARTS MUSEUM
CYNTHIA WOOD MITCHELL PAVILION
FAME CITY WATERWORKS
FUNERAL SERVICE MUSEUM, AMERICAN
HOUSTON ARBORETUM AND NATURE CENTER
HOUSTON FIRE MUSEUM
HOUSTON GARDEN CENTER
HOUSTON MUSEUM OF NATURAL SCIENCE
HOUSTON ZOOLOGICAL GARDENS
MILLER OUTDOOR THEATRE
MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS
PORT OF HOUSTON
RAILROAD TRAIN MUSEUM
SAM HOUSTON HISTORICAL PARK
SAN JACINTO BATTLEGROUND STATE HISTORIC PARK
TEXAS MEDICAL CENTER
ALKEK VELODROME - Site of 1989 Texas Track Championships.
The 33,334 meter track is banked nine to 33 degrees. Bicyclists may ride
Mar. - Oct. Tues., Thurs. 5 to 9 p.m. Sat., Sun., from 4 to 8 p.m.; Nov.,
Feb. Mon., Wed., Fri. 5 to 9 p.m. Sat., Sun. 2 to 6 p.m. In Cullen Park
at 19008 Saums Road.
ALLEN'S LANDING; OLD MARKET SQUARE - Park on
Buffalo Bayou where Allen brothers arrived in 1836 to promote new real
estate venture; Houston, General area, now Old Market Square became the
center of the new city. Several important 29th Century buildings restored;
now devoted to dining and entertainment, including quaint bar in Houston's
oldest commercial building.
ANHEUSER-BUSCH BREWERY TOUR - Tour of one
of the largest breweries in the state and see the brewing process from
start to high-speed packaging lines. Tours are Mon. - Sat. 9 a.m. to 4
p.m. For additional information call 713-670-1695. From downtown, I-10
east to 775 Gellhorn.
BAYOU BEND COLLECTION - Operated as a branch
of the Houston Museum of Fine Arts; 28 room Latin Colonial structure was
the home of the late Miss Ima Hogg, daughter of James Stephen Hogg, first
native-born governor of Texas. The collection consists of more than 4,800
works form colonial period to early 19th Century, including furniture,
paintings, metals, ceramics, glass, and textiles. The gardens consist of
14 acres bounded on three sides by Buffalo Bayou. They are made up of natural
woodlands and eight cultivated formal gardens with imported and native
plants. The collection is open Tues. -` Fri. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (mornings
reserved for school and group tours); Sat. 10 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. Tours of
the house open to children 10 and above accompanied by an adult. Admission.
Gardens are open Tues. - Sat. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m.
Admission. 1 Westcoff Street. For more information call 713-520-2600.
CHILDREN'S MUSEUM - Variety of hands-on
exhibits for children 4 months to 14 years in areas of science, history,
culture, and the arts. Other features include outdoor discovery garden
and greenhouse. Open Tues. - sat. from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sun. noon to 5
p.m. 1500 Binz in the Museum District. Admission.
CHRIST CHURCH CATHEDRAL - Founded in
1839, is Houston's oldest church on the original site. Contains handcarved
woodwork and fine stained-glass windows including one designed by Tiffany.
Open by request. Noon Eucharist in Golding Chapel. 1117 Texas Avenue.
CIVIC CENTER - Centerpiece is Tranquillity
Park, bounded by Smith, Rusk, Bagby and Walker Streets. Commemorates Apollo
flights with two-block long 32 level fountain and towers resembling rockets.
Bronze plaques in 15 languages tell the Apollo story. Restful oasis; occasional
Jesse H. Jones Hall for Performing Arts - Louisiana and Capitol Streets.
Houses both offices and performances of Houston Symphony Orchestra. Dramatic
grand lobby features Richard Lippold's "Gemini II" sculpture floating in
gleaming curve toward 66 foot ceiling. open only during scheduled events.
Nina Vance Alley Theater, 615 Texas St., is ultramodern facility called
"one of the most striking theaters in the world: by the New York Times.
Tours by appointment (713-228-9341). Fee.
Sam Houston Coliseum and Music Hall host Broadway shows, concerts, performances
and sporting events; 810 Bagby Street.
Wortham Center, contains two theaters, home to the Houston Grand Opera
and Houston Ballet, also hosts productions of the Society for the Performing
Arts, the Gilbert & Sullivan Society, Texas Chamber Society, and others.
The Grand Foyer, a 12,000 square foot public space is actually built above
Prairie Street. The 3.2 acre site is bounded by Texas, Smith and Preston
Streets and Buffalo Bayou. A 2,000 car under-ground parking garage is welcome
feature of Civic Center.
Sesquicentennial Park, on Buffalo Bayou is adjacent to the Wortham Theater,
Three story pavilions surrounded by cascading waterfall to pool at monument's
base. hike and bike trails switch back from lower bayou waterfront bat
landing to street level promenade. Gardens of azaleas and crape myrtle
trees accent magnificent view of Houston's striking skyline.
CONTEMPORARY ARTS MUSEUM - A non-collecting
museum dedicated to bringing the cutting edge of contemporary art to the
city through its nine exhibitions yearly. Open Tues. to Fri. from 10 a.m.
to 5 p.m. Sat. - Sun.; noon to 5 p.m. 5216 Montrose Bld. 713-526-0773
CYNTHIA WOOD MITCHELL PAVILION - a 1,000
seat outdoor performing arts center surrounded by lush, green forest. Located
in The Woodlands, performances held Apr. - Oct. From Houston, I-45 north,
exit either on Woodlands Pkwy. or Lake Woodlands Drive. Follow signs to
pavilion parking. For performance information. 713-363-3300.
FAME CITY WATERWORKS - 10 acres of water
highlighted by Big Mo, a twisting, turning rapids that drops six stories.
There are also speed slides, a wave pool, a lazy river for drifting, and
children's area. Open weekends in may and daily June through Labor Day.
For waterpark information. 713-530-3263. 13700 Beechnut.
FUNERAL SERVICE MUSEUM, AMERICAN - Nation's
largest collection of funeral service memorabilia, including two dozen
vehicles; horse drawn hearses, a funeral sleigh, 1941 hearse/ambulance,
and of special interest, a 1915 Packard "mourning bus" that carried the
casket, pallbearers, and 20 mourners at a top speed of 15 mph. Also displayed
are Civil War cast iron caskets, and turn-of-the-century embalming artifacts,
lush video presentations. Open Mon. - Sat. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sun. noon
to 4 p.m. 415 Barren Springs Drive. Admission.
FUNPLEX - Indoor complex includes a roller
rink, bowling, miniature golf, arcade areas, rides, three movie screens,
and food in air conditioned comfort. Hours vary; call for information 713-530-9957.
HOUSTON ARBORETUM AND NATURE CENTER - Environmental
education center with classes for children and adults. A preserve for native
Harris County plants and animals. Botanical hall contains discovery room
and gift shop. Over five miles of nature trails wind through 155 acres
of woodlands, ponds, and prairie. Trails open from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Building open Mon. - Sat. from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sun from 1 to 5:30 p.m.
HOUSTON FIRE MUSEUM - Visitors see evolution
of firefighting, from :bucket brigade: to modern firefighting vehicles.
Collection includes late 19th Century hand-drawn and operated pumper and
hose reel, 1892 steam fire engine, early 20th Century motorized pumper,
and other memorabilia. Open Tues. - Sat. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. In former Houston
Fire Dept. Station No. 7 at Milam and McIlhenny Streets. Admission is charged.
HOUSTON GARDEN CENTER - Garden trails, rose
garden and center headquarters. Building is open Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. to
5 p.. ; tails and gardens open Mon. to Fri. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ( 8 a.m. to
8 p.m. summer) North edge of Hermann Park, 1500 Hermann Drive.
HOUSTON MUSEUM OF NATURAL SCIENCE -
Exhibits feature space science plus geology, archaeology, and natural history.
In Hermann Park. Open Mon. - Sat. from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun. noon - 6
p.m. 1 Hermann Circle Drive. Admission. Of special interest are:
Burke Baker Planetarium - Called most sophisticated science teaching
device in the world. 232 seat planetarium can reproduce celestial pastures
as they would be seen from any point on earth or in space. Fly into a black
hold! Zoom through constellations faster than the speed of light! Celestial
shows (fee) Mon. - Fri. 1,2, and 3 p.m.; Sat., Sun., every half-hour 1
to 3:30 p.m. Weekend evenings feature entertaining rock and roll laser
shows (fee). Planetarium also houses an array of scientific exhibits. For
ticket and show information, 713-639-4629.
Lillie and Roy Cullen Gallery of Earth Science - Displays the Sams Collection
of more than 600 rare mineral specimens and hundreds of gemstones which
are among the fines specimens in the world. Also the Cockerel Hall of Minerals
with some of the worlds best examples of gems and minerals from around
the globe. There's a Hall of fluorescent Minerals, and a Hall of Gems an
Wortham IMAX THEATRE - Features exciting films projected onto six-story
tall screen. Shows are hourly Mo. - Thur. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Fri. to Sat.,
10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Sun noon to 8 p.m. Information, 713-639-4629.
Butterfly House, a tropical rainforest center, features some 2,000 live
butterflies flying inside among tropical plants, flowers, and a cascading
40 foot waterfall.
Hall of Health - transparent anatomical mannequin displays various organs;
lungs, heart, teeth, et.; hands-on exhibits, audio explanations.
HOUSTON UNDERGROUND - A 4 mile system
of underground pedestrian tunnels that includes a variety of shops and
restaurants. Maps available in banks along route and at Visitor Information
Houston Zoo. Set in a lush 55-acre landscape in Hermann Park, the Zoo is home to
more than 3,100 exotic animals representing more than 500 species including
elephants, lions, tigers, orangutans, and bears. Known for its diverse reptile
and bird collection. Tropical Bird House features a free-flight rain forest
aviary. The Houston Zoo is open 365 days of the year from 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
March through September and from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Admission.
Houston Zoo. Set in a lush 55-acre landscape in
Hermann Park, the Zoo is home to more than 3,100 exotic animals representing
more than 500 species including elephants, lions, tigers, orangutans, and bears.
Known for its diverse reptile and bird collection. Tropical Bird House features
a free-flight rain forest aviary. The Houston Zoo is open 365 days of the year
from 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. March through September and from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00
JAPANESE GARDEN - Designed by Ken Nakajima,
world-renowned Japanese landscape architect who designed gardens in Moscow,
Montreal, and Rome. Features Yukimi Stone Lantern, Azumaya (Tea House),
and waterfalls amid winding paths and lush exotic plants. Open daily from
10 a.m. to 6 p.m. In Hermann Park. Admission
MENIL MUSEUM - Collection of John and Dominique
de Menil includes contemporary, surrealistic and 20th Century art, antiquities,
Byzantine and medieval art, and tribal art. Housed in architecturally significant
100,000 square foot building designed by renowned architect Renzo Piano
of Italy. Open Wed. - Sun 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. 1515 Sul Ross.
MILLER OUTDOOR THEATRE - Performances feature
a variety of entertainment from grand opera to jazz, ballet to Shakespeare,
musical comedy to symphonic concerts. Outdoor theatre in Hermann Park seats
1,750 under unusual polygon roof; additional seating on grass hillside.
MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS - The city's finest collection
of art objects, paintings and sculpture, visited by more than a half-million
people each year. Accredited by American Association of Museums. Among
superb displays is Finnigan collection of ancient art from Egypt, Greece,
and Rome. Straus collection feature.
OIL RANCH - Day ranch activities include
pony rides, hayrides, petting zoo, picnicking, swimming, and much more.
Take U.S. 290 30 miles northwest. Open Mon. to Fri. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ;
Sat. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sun. hours seasonal. Reservations recommended.
ORANGE SHOW - Virtually impossible to describe,
the construction of a Houston eccentric over 26 years. A labyrinth of outdoor
and indoor passages, colored tiles, folk antiques, junk, and native art
embellished with odd mottoes and parables. Colorfully bizarre!! Open mar.
to Dec. from non to 5 p.m. Sat. & Sun.; memorial Day to labor Day Mon.
to Fri. from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 2402 Munger Street Admission. 713-926-6368.
PORT OF HOUSTON - Among the top three seaports
in the United States, sixth largest in the world in total tonnage. The
port is connected to Gulf of Mexico by a 50 mile long ship channel nearly
5,00 ships and 40,000 barges transit the channel yearly,. World Trade Center
Building is hub of Houston's international commerce, and location of many
foreign consuls assigned here. Visitors may view famous Houston Turning
Basin from observation deck reached through Gate 8 at 7300 Clinton Drive.
Observation deck open daily form 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
RAILROAD TRAIN MUSEUM - Antique railroad
cars and equipment. Open mar. to Dec., 1st and 3rd Sunday from 11:30 a.m.
to 4:30 p.m. 7390 Mesa Road
ROTHKO CHAPEL - Interfaith chapel houses canvasses
of the late Mark Rothko. Open daily 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 3900 Yupon.
SAM HOUSTON HISTORICAL PARK - Project of
Harris County Heritage Society, a monument to early history of Houston;
19 acre park features seven restored historic buildings ranging from oil
field pioneer Henry T,. Staitis's 17 room house built in 1905 to the 1826
Old Place, depicting early life in Harris County. Open Mon. - Sat. 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m. ( last tour at 3 ) Sun. 1 to 5 p.m. ( last tour at 4 ).
Museum of Texas History is sampler of Heritage Society's collection,
covering Lone Star history since 1519. Frequently changing exhibits range
from Spanish treasure to space exploration.
Housed n the adjacent building is the Long Row, a reconstruction of
a shopping strip built in 1837 that houses gift shop and tearoom that's
open for lunch Mon., Fri. Across from Texaco Heritage Plaza at 1100 Bagby.
SAN JACINTO BATTLEGROUND STATE HISTORIC PARK
Site is adjacent to city's northeast city limits. Four historical markers
on Battleground Road (Texas 34) within city attest to city's claim as "Birthplace
TEXAS LIMITED - Relive unhurried luxury rail
travel aboard the Teas Limited as it travels from Houston, America's fourth
largest city to romantic Galveston Island. Restored cars from the ' 30s,
;40s, and '50s. Trains run Fri. to Sun with night run 3rd Sat. of month.
Passengers from Houston may ride to League City to attend races at Gulf
Greyhound Park or to visit Space Center Houston and catch returning train
from Galveston. Departs Houston from 567 T.C. Jester; in Galveston, the
Railroad Museum a 25th and Strand. For ticket information call 713-228-7246.
TEXAS MEDICAL CENTER - Organized in 1945,
an immense complex of hospitals, medical and nursing schools, and research
institutions whose purpose is total coordination of health education, patient
care and research. More than 100 buildings occupy 650 acres in southwest
Houston south of Herman Park. Major units now operating at Texas Medical
Center include Albert B. Alkek Institute of Biosciences and Technology
of Texas A&M University, Baylor College of Medicine, City of Houston
health and Human Service, Gulf coast Regional Blood Center, Ben Taub General
Hospital, Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital, Hermann Hospital, Harris
County Psychiatric Center, The hospice at Texas Medical Center, Houston
Academy of Medicine-Texas Medical Center Library, Houston Community College
System's Health Services, Houston ISD' High School for Health Professions,
Institute for Rehabilitation and Research, Institute of Religion, Harris
County Medical Examiner's Office, LifeGift Organ Donation Center, Methodist
Hospital, Prairie View A&M College of Nursing, Ronald McDonald House,
St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Shriners Hospitals, Texas Heart Institute,
Texas Women's University, Houston Center, University of Houston College
of Pharmacy, University of Texas Health Science Center (which includes
Dental Branch, Division of Continuing Education, Graduate School of Biomedical
Sciences, Medical School, School of Allied Health Sciences, School of Nursing,
School of Public health, and Speech and Hearing Institute), University
of Texas M>D> Anderson Cancer center, Veterans Affairs Medical Center in
Houston, and the YMCA Child Care Center in the Teas Medical Center.
Free tours, for information and reservations call 713-790-1136. Assistance
Center in Texas Medical Center is at 1155 Holcombe, just east of Fanin.
J. Frank Dobie High School in Houston,
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