Saturday, February 28, 2015

South Texas Music Walk of Fame - 2/27/15

When visiting the Texas Surf Museum, we noticed the stars in the courtyard of the Water Street Market. Lo and behold, this is also the location of the South Texas Music Walk of Fame, only a block from Corpus Christi Bay.

The stars are made of ceramic tile and fill the courtyard of the Market.

The Walk of Fame was created as a tribute to the diversity and abundance of music from artists in South Texas, past and present. When the Walk of Fame opened in 2004, 6 stars were initially installed. Since then 6 stars are added each year on the first Friday of June, kicking off the Annual Water Street Market Music and Art Fest.

Here is a random sampling of the 60 stars that can be found here.

Check out their website for a full listing of the artists who are honored here and for information about the annual event honoring 6 more artists.


Texas Surf Museum - 2/27/15

Today we visited the tiny Texas Surf Museum here in Corpus Christi, TX. It is located at the Water Street Market and is not easily seen from the road (Water Street). Park your car and look for the Woody station wagon in the front of the entrance.

The museum occupies the old surf shop of Pat Magee, a former surfing champion. It opened in 2005 and tells of the surfer culture in South Texas along the Gulf of Mexico.

A full-size 1948 Woody station wagon replica made of foam core (the same material used to make modern surfboards) can be seen near the entrance.

There is a gift store when you enter the museum. The museum is towards the rear of the building.

The museum features vintage surfboards, photos and information about the manufacturers, and numerous surfing champions.

Replica of a surfboard manufacturing garage.

Many photos of surfing legends are displayed.

A wall-sized mural map of all of the surfing locations along the Texas Gulf Coast.

John and I enjoyed learning more about the surfing culture here in Texas. The carefree, surfer lifestyle has always held romantic allure for us both!

If you want to grab a bite to eat of enjoy some cocktails, the Surf Club is located next door.

The museum is free, "just like the waves."


Thursday, February 26, 2015

Padre Balli Park - 2/15/15

Today we packed a picnic lunch and headed for the beach. While it was breezy and longly about 60 degrees, it was wonderful to be in the sun and sand. We headed south from the RV park where we are staying to Padre Balli Park on Padre Island (about 8 miles).

Padre Balli Park is a beachfront park that provides access to the Gulf, beachfront activities, recreational vehicle and camping access.

There are 54 RV sites with electricity (30 amp) and water with a dump station nearby. Tent camping sites (35) are also available. We used Access Road 5 to get to the beach where we drove our car a short distance and parked near the sand dunes.

Sadie, the frisbee dog, had a blast!

Sandy feet and paws.

Check out the oil rigs in the Gulf.

Once we started eating our picnic lunch, the birds became very interested in us.

We met this lovely family as we walked the beach to the Bob Hall Pier. This dad, Sean, and two of his three kids, Sophie and Reid, were enjoying the beach. We enjoyed meeting them and Sadie loved the attention from the kids. Sophie kept crawling after Sadie and Reid had a toy shark. What fun!

The Bob Hall Pier extends 1,240' into the Gulf of Mexico. Fishing, bait and tackle can be purchased or rented here. There is also a restaurant as you can see by the photo below. The pier also helps generate favorable surfing conditions year round.

Under the pier...

Picnic shelters near the pier.

It was a gloriously beautiful day, and we all enjoyed it immensely.

For more information about this park or other Nueces County Parks, please see their website.


The Art Museum of South Texas - 2/24/15

With the overcast weather here in Corpus Christi today, we decided to visit The Art Museum. Located on Shoreline Drive, the building was designed by world-renowned architect, Philip Johnson, and opened in 1972. The Art Museum is affiliated with Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and has 1,500 pieces of art in their permanent collection.

Since our last name is Hester, we had to check out the Cafe! Here is there menu. In addition to indoor seating, there is a balcony area to enjoy the beautiful views of the bay.

Unfortunately, no photography is permitted in the galleries. I understand no flash photography, but I hate not being able to take pictures in a museum. Every great art museum I have visited (Philadelphia Museum of Art, Modern Museum of Art [NYC], Metropolitan Museum of Art [NYC], The Guggenheim [NYC], The British Museum [London], The Tate [London], the Prada [Madrid], The Uffizi Gallery [Florence], etc.) permits no-flash photography, so I do not understand the logic in not permitting it. Regardless, we enjoyed our visit.

I did take a photo of this amazing chandelier by Dale Chihuly, the master of the medium of glass. It was spectacular!

The galleries are large and bright with lots of light streaming in through the windows. There are also great views of Corpus Christi Bay from the building. Here's a shot of the USS Lexington from the deck of the museum.

The mission of the museum (in part) is "to operate educational advance the awareness, knowledge, appreciation, and enjoyment of the visual arts." Art classes are offered along with lectures and other opportunities for the community to participate in programs offered. There is an area set aside to help inspire children that visit the museum.

There are multiple outdoor sculptures shown below. The first one is Laps and Layers, 2004, by Danny O'Dowdy. It is made of limestone and mosaic tile. The second is a fountain; and, the third is Running Bison, 2008, by Kent Ullberg.

Additionally, there is an outdoor water feature that we really enjoyed.

The current exhibits in addition to some permanent exhibits are:

  • Bayou City Chic: Progressive Stream for Modern Art in Houston; providing insight into the creative output between the 1950 and 1980, 1/31/15 - 4/27/15.
  • Visionaries 2015: Renew, Reuse, Restart, a juried competition for young people. 2/15/15 - 3/22/15. 

Admission is $8/adult or $6/seniors. Visit their website for additional information on hours of operation and educational programs for adults and children.