The Lubbock ‘Weird’ Businesses We Wish We Could Resurrect From the Grave
Businesses fail or end for many reasons. Perhaps its a lack or sales, poor management, or simply because the owner wishes to seek new opportunities or retire. A business can be a fantastic idea, but for whatever reason, it ultimately evaporates.
Lubbock has seen several really amazing and loved business come and go. Here are a few that we wish we could resurrect from the dead. These businesses all have one thing in common: they were the favorite haunts of the weird kids, the arty kids, and the cool kids. They were maven havens. They made Lubbock weird and I wish we had them back.
Buffalo Beanos was basically a stoner/ outdoorsy/ dorm decoration type of shop that existed in Lubbock for 26 years. It was one of the few counter-culture businesses open back when I was a kid here in Lubbock. Buffalo Beano closed after fighting to stay open in their original location during a rezoning dispute that reshaped the North Overton area.
Founded in Amarillo way back in the 1960s, Hastings may not have been truly local to Lubbock but it certainly was to West Texas. Hastings was a great place to just kill some time while looking through racks of movies, music and pop culture stuff. It employed most of my friends at some point in the life, if they grew up here. Hastings died a death of a thousand cuts- online streaming and online ordering eventually caused Hastings to fail in 2016.
Small, Independent Music/ Comedy Venues
Einstein's. Kitchen Club. 19th Street Warehouse. Tokyo Joes. Froggy Bottoms. Main Street Saloon. Liquid 2000. Whiskey Dix. Etc. Etc.
I saw countless bands at small, independent venues. Some of these places were also bars and/ or served food, but they were primarily known as places you could see a show and run into like minded individuals. Some of these pre-date my ability to see a show by myself, but I definitely saw some amazing shows at a few of these independent venues. Places like this are passion projects and generally run on razor thin margins, so it's no wonder so many have come and gone.
Oh, how I loved The Joker. I loved to look at the huge variety of costumes, some of which were straight up vintage. I would spend so much time gazing longingly into the makeup case. I went on to do SFX makeup for Nightmare on 19th Street for 13 years. That place planted a dream in my heart that I got to see become a reality. I'm not sure why it closed, but I'm sure online shopping didn't help.
Cheap movies, cheap pickles and a floor so sticky you'd better not wear sandals. Showplace 6 took risks no other theater would back in the day. I went to a few at-capacity showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show there. Showplace 6 closed in 2010. While I wish we still had a discount theater, Alamo Drafthouse and Premiere Cinemas both host epic showings of cult classics.
The Odyssey was a "new-age" shop with gifts and witchy stuff long before our current magic culture renaissance. It was more of a hold-over of hippie culture. It was a relaxing and nice place to be that smelled amazing. Lucky for us, we have an excellent business that took up this niche in Lubbock- Tumbleweed Botanicals (2610 Salem Ave #3), which carries a wide variety of crystals, tarot, candles, herbal medicines and more.