[Amanda Mayo is our Contributing Editor Marfa. Click here to visit her blog.]
Most people start their day with coffee, while there are a couple of options in town my personal favorite is FRAMA. It is located in the Tumbleweed Laundromat on the corner of Texas and Austin Street. Featuring blue bell ice cream, and Food Shark scones start the day lazing around outside the coffee shop, and head down the road about a mile to the Chinati Foundation for the 10am tour.
Chinati is a contemporary art museum started by artist Donald Judd featuring permanent installation by him and his contemporaries. Admission is $10 for both morning and afternoon tours, or free if you live in the tri-county area. On the morning tour you will see Judd’s 100 mill-aluminum boxes, Kabakov’s School No. 6, Richard Long, the Arena, and John Chamberlain work. Ending in town at The Chamberlain building is prime Food Shark time.
Walk to the shaded plot across the street and order a Marfalafal or one of Krista and Adam’s daily specials at the Food Shark. Be sure and get a Mexican coke to go with your truck food, you’ll need the boost for the several flights of stairs to the top of the courthouse!
The Marfa courthouse is the site center of town and features early Spanish/ranch architecture. Once inside take the stairs all the way up, keep going until you get to a room that houses historic photographs of Marfa from it’s cavalry days. One more flight of stairs and you are in the cupola surrounded by windows; a popular wedding spot, but also a great view of Marfa, the surrounding landscape, and the mountains behind the town. Be sure to be out by 5, or you’ll get locked in for the evening!
With your back to the courthouse just past food shark is the Marfa Book Co. and Marfa Public Radio, two wonderful stops in our Marfa afternoon. Marfa Book Co. is a design based bookstore, but also has a wonderful selection of literature, poetry, and non-fiction. Owned and operated by Tim Johnson, he’ll get you anything you need all you have to do is ask! Be sure and spend some time in the gallery in the back of the Book Co. it often features local or regional artists. Next-door is Marfa Public Radio, home to KRTS 93.5 fm. Stop in and buy a t-shirt or get a tour of the station, it’s listener supported and locally programmed with NPR news coverage.
Wander around the block to JM Drygoods, if you are in the mood for some great West Texas finds. Mexican vintage, ranch wear, and home, its fun to peruse and even more fun when you walk out with a great Mexican dress, vintage cowboy boots, or straw hats from Panama.
In sight of JM is Ballroom Marfa, a center for Contemporary Art. They always have interesting, and thought provoking artists in their showroom.
If a four star restaurant is what you are in the mood for, do not miss out on Cochineal. Menus change daily, but the date pudding is always in season and always worth a trip. Located on San Antonio St, look for the nopales adorning the sidewalk out front. Since you’ll end up at Padre’s for some beer, whiskey, or a margarita anyway you can always eat some great dinner there too. I’m usually spotted with a bacon cheeseburger and red beans and rice, but the menu boasts in general Cajun specialties; boudain sausage, gumbo, bratwurst and pickled creole eggs.
Check my blog for lots more to do in Marfa.