Log Cabin Village’s authentic historical houses and cabins give visitors an interactive look at life in 19th-century Texas. Through tours, artifact collections, and story hours led by Log Cabin Village’s four resident cats, visitors are transported back to a simpler time. Grab your family, friends, or trio of wind-up toy ducks and meander through the six cabins, the smokehouse, school, blacksmith shop, water-powered gristmill, and herb garden to see, smell, and hear about the frontier days of yore. Both the one-room schoolhouse and Seela cabin can be entered and explored in their entirety, and the other historical properties can be viewed behind a barrier. Various demonstrations, from embroidering to blacksmithing to stylish bonnet accessorizing, happen daily, and staff historical interpreters are always available to talk and answer questions.
Unlike many of its brethren, the Arlington Museum of Art does not maintain a permanent collection. Instead, it celebrates the ever-changing nature of art by featuring local artists in traveling exhibitions and curated shows. Also, since opening in 1952, the museum has been a headquarters for promoting artistic expression throughout the community. Gallery talks and artist lectures give visitors the chance to interactively learn, and summer art camps get kids motivated to create masterpieces.
The National Cowgirl Museum honors the tough-as-nails cow-lasses of the American West with a comprehensive collection of more than 6,000 photographs and 5,000 artifacts, as well as both traveling and permanent exhibits. A Hall of Fame gallery shares the stories of 200 honorees, including Annie Oakley, Patsy Cline, and Sandra Day O'Connor, while artifacts such as costumes, boots, saddles, letters, and jackalope lassos span 150 years of cowgirl history. Exhibits are organized to display different aspects of the lives of women in the West. Into the Arena honors women riders with rodeo memorabilia and a life-sized bronco model, allowing mounters to simulate the thrill of the rodeo. Claiming the Spotlight takes a look at the entertainers, actors, and country-western musicians whose tales of rootin' and shootin' injected the American consciousness with nostalgia for the open prairie and dangerously full tobacco spittoons.
In the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, the Omni Theater’s domed, 120-foot-wide IMAX screen towers over moviegoers, projecting myriad tales of human, beast, and machine alike across eight stories. The screen has born documentaries on topics such as the Serengeti desert, the Grand Canyon, and the aquatic ecosystems that distinguish the ocean from well-maintained dunk tanks. Originally limited by its scale to films that lasted an hour or less, the theater can now show feature-length films thanks to digital remastering technology, and its new IMAX IDO projection lens has increased films’ brightness and sharpness. These developments mark yet another addition to its pioneering history, which includes being among the first IMAX screens in the region when it opened in 1983.
With more than 90 artifacts on display, Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea offers new, exciting interpretations of the Mesoamerican civilization. Head to the Kimbell Art Museum's architecturally renowned building and browse the Mayans' fascinating carved stone monuments, artifacts crafted from jade and gold, and sculpted figurines. From the shell-and-quartz carving of a frog to an intricately painted plate with the Mayan maize god, the Fiery Pool exhibit explores the Mesoamerican's spiritual relationship with the sea, intriguing both anthropologic buffs and those who believe other cultures only exist in their ancient-society-on-the-bottom yogurt cups. Designed by American architect Louis I. Kahn, the museum's subtle use of space and materials, along with its inventive use of natural light enhances the enjoyment of the art.