Thirty miles northeast of Austin, down a state highway and a few country roads, you'll find one of the last thriving dance halls in Central Texas, the Old Coupland Inn.
Part dance hall, part restaurant, part bed and breakfast, the Old Coupland Inn is a cherished venue where you can experience the charm and vibrancy of small town Texas culture first hand.
Built in 1904, the building has served many functions, including a pharmacy, a hardware store, a newspaper headquarters and a lively tavern. It wasn't until 1992 when current owners Tim and Barbara Worthy transformed the dilapidated interior into a dance hall, that the site became a popular country music venue.
From Thursday through Saturday night every week, hundreds of Central Texans and tourists alike make the drive to the small town of Coupland (pop. 298) to enjoy dancing, live music, good Southern food and country hospitality.
Top Texas and national artists perform here all the time. Their framed headshots hang in a quasi hall-of-fame on the walls of the dance hall's dusty back hallway. Walk to the restrooms and you'll spot the faces several country stars from past and present, some which launched their careers at Coupland.
Attached to the dance hall is a country kitchen that serves up owner Barbara Worthy's Louisiana-inspired take on Texas BBQ and country dishes. It sure ain't diet food, but it damn sure is tasty. You'll work it off on the dance floor. "You put a Texan with good music, good food and cold beer, he's gonna dance," says co-owner Tim Worthy.
Above the dance hall rests the Old-West style bed and breakfast. Each room has cowboy decor and a unique theme. In the morning, a guest chef whips up a country breakfast in the communal kitchen. Guests often book the rooms out a year in advance for the big shows like New Year's Eve.
While the amenities are unique, what's truly special about the Old Coupland Inn is the generations of guests who frequent the establishment.
"You'll have people in here of all ages," says Tim Worthy. "They're teaching their kids, and their kids are teaching their grandkids. It's a tradition that's been passed on and passed down. That's what's special to me about this place"
The Old Coupland Inn and Dance Hall is open Thurs 5:30-10 PM, Fri. 5:30-12PM and Sat. 5:30-1 PM. 101 Hoxie St, Coupland, TX 78615