Will Rogers Memorial Center
The Will Rogers Memorial Center (3401 W. Lancaster Ave., 817/392-7469, www.fortworthgov.org, open to the public weekdays and for equestrian events on weekends, free admission) presides over the Cultural District with its colossal art deco tower. Named by Fort Worth civic pioneer Amon Carter for his friend Will Rogers (the famous cowboy performer), the stately art deco buildings remain significant attractions in the district. The coliseum and auditorium appropriately represent Cowtown culture with livestock shows and theatrical events.
Be sure to note the magnificent architectural elements throughout the complex, including the coliseum’s innovative girder support system allowing unobstructed views, and the nearly 200-foot-tall decorative tower. A bronze bust of Will Rogers in the facility’s lobby is the subject of a popular local legend that claims rodeo cowboys have rubbed a dent into the statue’s nose while attempting to bestow Rogers’s good fortune on their performance. Although the nose bears a notable impression, it’s really there from the statue being accidentally dropped during installation.
© Andy Rhodes from Moon Texas, 6th Edition