Upon my first night in Wichita Falls I asked a friend to take me out and show me a good place to go. He did and that place doesn’t exist anymore. So, for those headed to the Falls any time soon for a visit or to go to school, here are the tree places you will want to keep your eye out for when you feel like partying.
For everyone who likes music in any form, The Iron Horse Pub is the place to hang out in Wichita Falls. A true green-blooded Irie owns the place that has connosuers of all ages (legal ages) stopping in for a round of there favorite stout, ale, pale ale, pilsner, or any other brew one might crave.
Tuesday nights are two-dollar pint nights at the Iron Horse all the way until 11pm. You can’t beat a deal like that for the atomosphere. On the weekends, Thursday through Saturday, there are always live bands gracing the stage at the Iron Horse. Local favorites such as Bigloo, Johnny Cooper, and The RP Band come in to bring the house down with an array of music. Legendary artists such as Gary P. Nunn, Keith Sikes, and Eric Sardinas have shown up to show what the biz is all about.
Every St. Patty’s day the owner brings in a group from across the pond to bring in the true musical spirit of Ireland who usually are ready stay and play unitl the sun comes up but, since the Iron Horse is in Texas, the law won’t allow it.
The Iron Horse is in the oldest part of Wichita Falls and has even been declared an historical marker for the City of Wichita Falls and the State of Texas. Nestled on 8th street, just off of Indiana, the great green facade boldly welcomes anyone looking to whet his whistle. A very old building, the “Horse” stands as tall as any early century building and just as sturdy. Upon entering one will be in awe of the great wrap-around wooden bar that takes the consumer to a time long ago on and Emerald Island.
Across from the beautiful bar is an old cask of peanuts there for the taking right next to the more American addition of the juke box. Through the doorway by the peanuts is the pool room. Three pool tables, many booths and tables, and plenty of authentic Irish and rugby paraphenalia. At the end of that room is the side door to the stage.
A hidden treasure lies behind the bar and the pool room and that is the big concert room. Seemingly impossible to hide behind the deceiving facade of the entire place, the concert room holds room for a few hundred people and a big stage for the band. Formally outdoors, the concert room was covered in recent years to permit the show to go on even if the wather didn’t. Truly a unique place full of vitality, the Iron Horse Pub is among the best places to go for a good time in Wichita Falls.
Just down the street a ways is the It’ll Do bar. It’s doesn’t have quite the girth that the Iron Horse does, but it has personality. Truly a different setting, the It’ll Do shares a parking lot with four other bars of about the same caliber. All sporting simple yellow signs that simply claim what that corner is called, each bar seems to be a suitable sister for or lover for any of the others. The heavy metal door to the parking lot is always open to anyone. Inside one will find a group of old-timers who have worn their own shape into their own bar stools.
With another impressive wooden bar, the It’ll do stands long and sturdy playing host to those who come to take a drink. Not an overly impressive collection of liquor or imported beers awaits the customer, but there is always plenty do drink at a good price. Nancy will wait on you hand and foot and just enjoy every minute you spend with her, so long as you tip.
The musical venue at the It’ll Do is a bit more modest. A corner with a permanent collection of amps, microphones and drums sits just waiting to be used at the weekly Sunday jam session or for the house band on Saturday nights. Whether you come late or come early to the It’ll Do bar, the name rings true.
And, as everyone does in Wichita Falls, we arrive at Toby’s. It’s more of a bar than a grill that seems to be the terminal degree in bars for most people on most nights in the Falls. After anyone goes anywhere for anything, the common place to meet is Toby’s for its nightly drink specials and its normally-fried food that soaks up an appetite. With two separate bar rooms, each sporting big screen TVs, Toby’s can hold plenty of people on any given night.
The main sporting event inside Toby’s is shuffleboard. On all holidays and special occasions the owner holds a big shuffleboard tournament, documented by the wall of fame. Faces of past and present champions are displayed together along with pictures of their trophies in the big shuffleboard “stadium.”
Just out the back door there is a huge wooden patio that can handle plenty of overflow from any of the bar rooms or just about any place in town. Of course, like every place in Wichita Falls, Toby’s has its stage. Weekly musical guests include local one-man acts, and seldom full bands. The patio is certainly the place to get out and get a fresh breath if you can get away from the huge TV at Toby’s.
If you ever get out to Wichita Falls and you’re looking for a good place to meet up with friends or just to simply drown your sorrows, these are three best places to go. Not one of these places will frown on a strange face.