The Presidential Museum and Leadership Library is located on the campus of the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, next door to the Ellen Noel Art Museum. Established in 1965, The Presidential Museum is dedicated to the history of the Office of the President, and to the men who have served as president of the United States.
The museum hosts traveling exhibits, and has an extensive permanent collection that includes campaign memorabilia such as campaign buttons, slogans, and posters; and political cartoons. Also included are the First Lady miniatures – small dolls representing each First Lady, with the hairstyles and inaugural gowns of each. The dresses on the dolls took 20 years of research to get right.
The newest addition to The Presidential Library is one of the family homes of Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, which was moved from its original location in Odessa to be part of The President Museum complex. Furthermore, The Leadership Library, also known as the “Library of the Presidents,” contains nearly 5,000 volumes including memoirs of presidents and documents from their years of service. The Presidential Museum and Leadership Library is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. An admission fee is charged.
Top things to do in Odessa, Texas
Apart from the Presidential Museum and Library Museum, Odessa is a city that a lot more to offer. It features several popular attractions and fun activities that will keep both you and your family entertained during the visit. Let’s take a look at some of the top things to do in Odessa, Texas.
Spend a day out with the kids at Floyd Gwin Park
The Floyd Gwin Park is a 52-acre area for kids and families that includes a kid’s playing area and equipment such as toys and swings. Furthermore, adults can also show their talent on the pitch by playing basketball, soccer, volleyball, and soccer, etc. In simple words, Floyd Gwin Park has something for everyone. While the kids are running around and doing what they do best, the adults can relax under the shade and picnic as well. Since the park is well-maintained, you will find the area to be thoroughly relaxing. Therefore, if you are in Odessa and want your kids to be entertained, you know where to go.
Visit the White Pool House
While in Odessa, you should definitely pay a visit and spend some time at the White Pool House. It happens to be one of the oldest structures in Odessa. The White Pool House features farm outbuildings, a wooden Eclipse windmill, and the barn replica. In addition to that, you will also come across some unique family items that have been restored at the house. Furthermore, the barn is used for certain events and ceremonies. Believe it or not, this place is photogenic as well. You will need to bring a camera along for capturing some pictures.
View artwork at Ellen Noel Art Museum of the Permian Basin
If you are a fan of books and art, then the 20,000 sq. ft Ellen Noel Art Museum of the Permian Basin has got everything for you. This is a world-class and state of the art museum that comprises three galleries featuring old paintings and modern artwork. And if you are someone who loves nature and wants to spend some relaxing time, then head to the sensory garden that features plants and flowers.
What’s great about this garden is that it also includes railings for wheelchairs. Therefore, disabled people can share the fun too. The library is a whole another world here. You think of any book and this museum will have it.
See a live performance at the Permian Playhouse
While artwork and books are one thing, live performance is another and Odessa does not hold back in that area. The Permian Playhouse features live theatrical performances, which is an art in itself. May it be a comedy show, plays, or musicals, this playhouse will keep you entertained one way or the other. Since it specializes in staging shows that are full of fun, you can take your kids for a show as well.
Checkout the meteorite crater at Odessa Meteor Crater
The Odessa Meteor Crater is home to a thousand-ton meteor that fell on earth once. The meteor and its impact was so huge that it created a 500 feet wide and 100 feet deep hole. However, today it is mostly filled with silt and dust. Moreover, a walking trail surrounds the hole, explaining the incident’s history. Once you have taken a closeup of the area, you can head to a museum nearby that explains more about the meteorite.
Have fun at the Altitude Trampoline Park
Odessa can become hot. For this reason alone, it has the Altitude Trampoline Park that features an indoor trampoline park for tonnes of fun. The area is designed to keep both kids and adults entertained and even includes an Olympic Trampoline. In addition to that, you can also entertain yourself by hopping on the trapeze swing and playing extreme dodgeball, etc.
Taste the donuts of Southern Maid
If you thought that was it, you were wrong. Odessa will give your taste buds a fair share of deliciousness and creamy doughnuts once you visit the Southern Maid. The yummy, fresh, and soft doughnuts are not only delicious but a treasure hunt as well. Not everyone gets a chance to taste these heavenly doughnuts. We would recommend trying the cherry doughnuts and you will not regret it. From vanilla to lemon, you will find almost every type of doughnut here. The best thing about these doughnuts is that they are extremely affordable. Try buying every flavor so that you get the ultimate doughnut experience.
Discover the stunning Stonehenge replica on the UTPB Campus
The University of Texas of the Permian Basin is home to the Permian Basin Stonehenge that you cannot miss. It is basically a replica of the original Stonehenge located in England. Although the replica happens to be comparatively shorter than the original structure, it is made of limestone slabs and is a treat to the eyes. It is said that the original structure took around 2000 years to complete. Whereas, the replica took only six weeks. The purpose of this structure was to attract some visitors and add a bit of charm to the city. Needless to say that the purpose was successfully achieved.
Attend a Show at the Globe Theater
Theater fans are well-familiar with the Globe Theater, which is associated with William Shakespeare and is located in London. However, you might be wondering what that has to do with Odessa, Texas?Well, Odessa happens to be the home of the Globe of the Great Southwest. It is a 410-seat replica theater from the wooden stage to the timber-framed façade. Its Elizabeth Stage hosts several modern and classical plays throughout the year, similar to the Globe Theater in London.
As this article reaches its conclusion, it needs to be mentioned that Odessa is a perfect combination of history and modern art. Although not many people are aware of what Odessa has to offer, those who have visited this place have never left disappointed. With so much to do and discover, this is perhaps the right time for you to pack your bags and jet to Odessa.