Feb. 25, 2011 – Go Texan Day

It’s been called a spirit. It’s even been referred to as a fever. Very few individuals – if any – can explain it. People in Houston just know that there’s something in the air, and they know that it arrives early in February and lasts about a month.

They smell pit-smoked barbecue for miles. They see their friends wearing jeans and boots. And while driving to work, they pass hundreds of men and women on horseback, some even in wagons.

Most Houstonians know exactly what’s going on – they’ve been around it for many years. But “foreigners” might not realize they’re being soaked in the Go Texan Spirit.

“Grow beards, wear big hats, boots and spurs. Let’s put a little touch of the Wild West into this thing.” Those were perhaps the first words spoken that informally established the unique Western flavor of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™.

It was in 1938 when the general manager of the Houston Chamber of Commerce initiated a motion to immerse the city in excitement for the Houston Fat Stock Show and Livestock Exposition. It wasn’t, however, until the mid 1950s that the Go Texan movement was officially launched, as a result of an advertising agency promotion.

In 1954, Archer Romero chaired the first Go Texan Committee, and members of the newly-established group encouraged everyone to wear Western clothes. They also distributed posters and other publicity material.

This Go Texan spirit has expanded throughout the last four decades, partly due to the efforts of the Show’s seven Go Texan committees and the Western Heritage Community Challenge Committee. These committees help publicize the Show through numerous promotional events and Go Texan contests.