1701 Canyon Lake Drive Lubbock, Texas 79403
Phone (806) 747-8734 Fax (806) 740–0668
My husband and I have recently resolved to explore the wonders of our own backyard by making day trips from our home in Amarillo to different parts of the High Plains. I’ve been wanting to do this for awhile; it’s something I loved doing with my dad when I was a kid (thanks, dad), and I want my kids to learn to appreciate what’s around them. It’s these small little curiosities that might pique an interest one of my children will value for the rest of their lives. A few weeks ago, I discovered the website http://www.texasescapes.com, and we had a host of new destinations to try . If you get a chance, visit this site. It’s another one that will suck up a good 3 hours, though, so be prepared. While perusing TexasEscapes, I began reading about the history of windmills in Texas. I was fascinated. Did you know that windmills allowed Texas to be settled? Did you know that windmills and their towers were so important that they became mailboxes on the ranches they sustained, with addresses listed as tower numbers rather than streets or cities? Plus they’re absolutely beautiful. When you’re riding along I-40 around Amarillo it’s hard to look in any direction without seeing an old windmill connecting the sky to the Earth, both figuratively and literally. As I’m riding along I think about who built the windmill and the role it played in their lives. That’s why our completely un-planned trip to the American Wind Power Center in Lubbock was so fascinating to me. We spotted the museum and its huge modern wind turbine while en route to another event, and when the rain spoiled our apple-picking, we headed back to explore what we thought was a small windmill park. Our small park turned out to be a very large collection of restored antique windmills both inside and outside of the center. If you get a chance, go here; it’s a fabulous chance to take pictures and learn about the history of this High Plains icon. The museum has a suggested donation of $5 per person or $10 per family. Well worth it, in my opinion.