The 806 Explorer: Tahoka

Alice Briggs

Love to travel and experience new things? Has the economy and inflation put a crimp in your budget? There are fun and interesting things to do and see outside of Lubbock, but close enough that a hotel stay is not required. Welcome to The 806 Explorer, where we find the fabulous things to do a short distance from Lubbock.

Tahoka is a town south of Lubbock that at one time was one of the largest cattle shipping cities in the nation. It is the county seat of Lynn County, which is often one of the top cotton producing counties in the nation.

If you head south out of Lubbock on I-27, you’ll find yourself on US 87 just south of the Loop. In about 30 minutes, depending on traffic, construction, and how fast you drive, you’ll see 3 exits for Tahoka. Take the first one, and you’ll see the welcome sign and, if your eyes are really good, the courthouse in the distance.

Follow the Y to the right, and if you’re here Tuesday – Saturday between 8:00 am and 2:00 pm, you’ll see the Big Dog food truck on your left. If you’re hungry, locals recommend The Mary Special. At the time of writing, it includes a burrito, chalupa, taco, enchilada, rice, beans, chips, and salsa for $9.

A few blocks closer to downtown, you’ll see Crushers 40 Weight and George’s also on your left. Both have inside dining as well as a drive through.

Crushers is a coffee shop par excellence with coffee, teas, pastries and more. Grab a quick bite from the drive through, or, if one of your party needs to do some work while the rest of you explore, come inside and grab a table and sit down. They’ve brilliantly planned the seating so recharging your devices is easy and free Wi-Fi makes this the perfect place for a bit of remote work. Crushers 40 Weight gets its name from the owner’s father, who owned the property as a gas and tire station. Steve Braddock’s nickname was Crusher and he always asked for a cup of 40 weight coffee with 1 sugar cube at his brother’s mechanic shop in Post. Strong black coffee is their family tradition, but they also have fabulous tea. I can recommend their chai latte. On pleasant evenings, they also have live music out back, check with them for their schedule.

Next door is George’s, a long-standing local favorite diner. Call ahead for to-go orders, swing by for a coke and a smile at the drive-through, or go inside and sit a spell over your meal. Their burgers, chicken fried steak, and enchiladas are favorites with the locals. And, they have specials during happy hour from 2 to 5 if you need an afternoon snack. They don’t take credit or debit cards, so bring some cash or use their ATM inside.

As you continue South on Main street, you’ll want to stop in at The Home Place. The Home Place is owned by a local family and opened in 2016. They have a wide range of items from clothing, home decor, as well as other TX and small business made items. They love to work with other small businesses just like them, especially if they have fabulous creations their customers love. They host ladies’ nights and other events occasionally, check out their social media for details. They are open Wednesday-Friday 11-5:30 and every third Saturday 10-noon. If you’ll need a quick dinner the day after your visit, check out the selection of P.D.Q meal mixes produced here in Texas!

Next door is Tahoka Drug, and while it is a good place to get a prescription filled, or purchase necessary items, what you’ll want to check out is the Pharmstead Boutique. The front half or so of the building has a great selection of trending items that they keep updated so there’s always something new to see and find. They also sell some locally produced items such as Wizard coffee roasted in Post. You can pick up a copy of “Lynn County News” here or across the street at their offices and get the info on anything happening in the area you might want to know about and take advantage of during your visit.

At the end of the block, you’ll have seen the courthouse. It was built in 1916 and replaced a smaller wood structure. The jail was on the 4th floor and it has beautiful marble staircases and marble slab wainscoting through the building. On the northwest corner of the property is a veterans’ memorial the city is justifiably proud of.

Around the square to the west, you’ll find Designs & Daisies. Many people come from the surrounding areas for their screen printing and embroidery services as they do a fabulous job. They are also a full service florist, produce promotional items, create gift baskets and have some of their sport shirt designs and some unique decor items for sale at the front of the shop.

On the south side of the courthouse is Planted Roots. It’s open during the summers Wednesday-Friday 9-5:30 and Saturday 9-1. They always have a great selection of summer bedding plants and yard decor. There’s always something new, so be sure and stop by every time you come.

If you’re interested in history, head back out to Lockwood, and visit the Tahoka Pioneer Museum. It has a well-curated history of the area. Did you know it was bigger than Lubbock once upon a time? And that there’s a Tahoka Daisy? If the kids need some playtime, there’s a cute park just behind the museum with a picnic area under a gazebo for the adults to relax in the shade while the kids play.

Across the street from the museum, you’ll find the old hotel. The first Saturday of every month, Tahoka Trade Days are hosted there. See what fabulous things you can find!

Next, head west, and you’ll find Maxtique’s. Stop in if you’re an antiques fan and see what she has found for you lately. Or what fresh flowers she has in stock.

Further down Lockwood to the West, you’ll find Tio’s Mexican Restaurant and More, a new restaurant locals are excited about. And, if some in your party aren’t fans of the spicier side of life, not to worry, there are many American food options to choose from. Locals love their tacos, catfish, and be sure and try their carne guisada smothered burrito. They are open Tuesday-Saturday 11 to 9 and Sunday from 11 to 4. Dine in, or pick up an order to go at the drive through window on the East side of the building. We’re sure you’ll find something you’ll love in Tahoka, when the wanderlust hits, head South and enjoy an adventure in this historic town.