Saturday, July 18, 2009

Let's Go To Luckenbach, Texas

For anyone who doesn't recognized "Luckenbach," it was made famous to many in a song recorded by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings in 1977. While I was looking for information on Fredericksburg prior to our trip, I found that Luckenbach is just a few miles away so we decided to check it out. A brochure we picked up said that you shouldn't count on signs to get you there as they're stolen as quickly as they're put up. Luckenbach wasn't in the GPS, so we relied on a simple map on the brochure. As we neared Luckenbach, we saw a sign on the opposite side of the road for "Uptown Luckenbach." The crude signs for a gift shop were compelling and we found ourselves pulling off the road. Below is what we found.

We hesitantly made our way up a walk toward the building that appeared to be the gift shop. It looked like we'd just walked onto someone's farm - which we had - and were a bit apprehensive. Until the old farmer himself headed to the gift shop from the barn. In Texas style, he waved big and smiled at us. We joined a couple from Colorado in the tiny shop. There were t-shirts and hats, stickers, magnets. All a little on the hokey side. The farmer was chatty and explained that so many people stopped at his farm to ask directions to "downtown" Luckenbach that he decided to sell them something while they were here. He asked if we'd like to see a fast armadillo. I personally detest armadillos, so I wasn't really sure that I wanted to see one, but before we could answer, he pulled a Shiner Bock bottle from behind him. Dremel tool in hand, he began to engrave an armadillo in the bottle.In less than a minute, he added "Luckenbach, Texas", our names, and the date and handed it over. Now that is a fast armadillo! He said he gives them away for fun. We put a dollar in the tip jar - of course, but the experience was certainly worth more! I wish I'd had the nerve to ask for his picture with the bottle, but I didn't. Maybe next time. He said that usually no one is in the store, and you just leave cash in a jar if you find something you want. It was just priceless. We also bought a patch and a magnet - handpainted by the farmer. Four dollars well spent!We headed on down the road to the real Luckenbach, which boasts a population of 3. Luckenbach's main draw now is the former post office turned gift shop. There's also a dance hall that can be rented out. Wedding reception in Luckenbach? If only we'd known! There's a bar and live music, a snack bar, and an ATM machine cleverly disguised as an outhouse. Not a lot there, but if you ever make your way to Fredericksburg, you should go. Don't forget to stop at Uptown Luckenbach though - you've got to see that fast armadillo!


Keetha said...

Seriously? That's about the most awesome thing I've ever heard! Luckenbach is real, how about that?

What a great story. Thanks for sharing!

Jocelyn said...

I adore that places like this still exist--and people like that guy.

Take THAT, Wal-Mart! Things with personality and zest still rule!

Dawn said...

You ALWAYS find the neatest places!!

Can't believe he announced that normally no one was in the store... guess with a town of 3 though, the thief wouldn't be hard to find .

Anonymous said...

Its a great little two building town, go in the spring when the weather is nice and you can sit in the shade and enjoy a few shiners!