Things to Do

5 ‘Truly Texas’ Things To Do in Brownwood This Year

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Brownwood, the country seat of Brown County, sits in the center of Texas. This quaint city is often overlooked, yet it is one of the most beautiful in the northern foothills of the Hill Country. The city is named for Henry Brown Stevenson, a native Kentuckian. Stevenson came to Texas as a trader and later became an Indian fighter. Curious, isn’t it? The town chose the Kentuckian’s middle name rather than his last name. The lush, green, rolling hills attracted farmers and ranchers, but later, the city boasted major oil production. The popular Lake Brownwood was completed in 1933. Camp Bowie, a large military training center, was added in 1940. You’ll find history, beauty, and lots of fun in Brownwood.

1. Lake Brownwood

lake
Photo courtesy of Ray Tipton, Executive Director of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce

Do you enjoy water activities? Who doesn’t! Lake Brownwood is the place to find them! Go camping for a week, or spend a day picnicking. You’ll discover long and short trails. Boats, skiing, fishing, it’s all here, along with so much more.

2. Brown County Museum of History

Photo courtesy of Ray Tipton, Executive Director of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce

How about history? You’ll find plenty of antiquity, enough of it to hold your attention at the Brown Country Museum of History. Don’t miss this museum. It has over 150 historical displays. Are you familiar with the Penateka Tribe of Comanches? Or how about the Camp Bowie military collection? You’ll find a miniature Birdsong Circus, and don’t forget to take a tour of the old jail. It’s across the street.  The Lyric Theater is next on the list of fun things to do in Brownwood.

3. Lyric Theater

SONY DSC
Photo courtesy of Ray Tipton, Executive Director of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce

The Lyric is located in historic downtown Brownwood. A dinner and a show make a lovely evening out, and the Lyric offers live performances.  Local participation is encouraged. The notable building is completely renovated and is a study in architecture.

4. Howard Payne University

HPUPhoto courtesy of Ray Tipton, Executive Director of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce

Howard Payne University, founded in 1889 by Baptists, is a liberal arts university with over one hundred majors, minors and various programs.  The Brownwood campus is filled with the old and new. In 1984, the Old Main building burned an it was a devastating loss to faculty and students. Today HPU has over 1200 students and is known for its Christian Studies program. The campus is impressive.

5. The Old Harvey HouseOld Harvey HousePhoto courtesy of Ray Tipton, Executive Director of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce

Once upon a time, there was a chain of Harvey Houses to feed and sleep passengers along the railways, and Brownwood had one. The Harvey House girls lived on site, and you can see their dorm rooms. It is now another beautiful, one-hundred year old restored building. Take a tour.  It houses the Brownwood Visitors Center and a store where you’ll find one-of-a-kind Texas gift items. Stop in and the Chamber of Commerce will give you info to the sites of the city. Go upstairs and visit the Gordon Wood Hall of Champions. This exhibition is worth the trip alone.