Many travelers pass by Sulphur Springs, Texas, on their way from Arkansas to Dallas.
The Lone Star State is a big place with several massive cities that attract many visitors. So it’s understandable that not everyone will visit this historic city. While it may not have a massive population, it still has plenty to offer.
You can fill your schedule with fun activities worth a day trip. Today, we’ll share five things you should do when visiting Sulphur Springs, Texas.
Let’s go for a ride!
The History of Sulphur Springs, Texas
Sulphur Springs, Texas, started as a village back in the mid-1800s. People flocked to the area due to over 100 natural springs that were found in the area. Residents worked together to grow their town’s infrastructure and move it closer to establishing itself as a city.
In 1854, the village became a city after installing a post office. However, it was under the name “Bright Star.” It wasn’t until shortly after the town became the County Seat of Hopkins County that they changed the name from “Bright Star” to Sulphur Springs. The name change was to hopefully market the place as a health resort due to the healing spring waters.
They experienced a tremendous boom from 1882 to 1885. The population swelled to more than 2,500. The construction of a courthouse, multiple churches, schools, a flour mill, and several factors took place in this short time.
Agriculture has played a tremendous role in the area’s success over the last 80 years. It boasts more than 600 dairies in the county, and many refer to it as the “Dairy Capital of Texas.” This has caused an increase in interest from farmers and those in the horse industry from all over the country.
Pro Tip: Treat yourself and your partner to a visit to one of these 7 Romantic Getaways in Texas.
Why Is It Called Sulphur Springs?
It’s a struggle to figure out how some cities got their name. Luckily, Sulphur Springs, Texas, is not one of them. It’s no surprise the town received its name from the hot springs in the area.
The springs were a major attraction and brought people from all parts of eastern Texas to the city. However, the springs have dried up and have remained almost entirely inactive during the 20th century. If you’ve ever smelled water with increased levels of sulfur, you know that many residents likely aren’t disappointed that the smell is no longer lingering in the air.
Pro Tip: After exploring Sulphur Springs, head to these 7 Best Roadside Attractions in Texas You Absolutely Have to See.
What Is There to Do in Sulphur Springs Today?
If you’re considering a day trip to Sulphur Springs, Texas, there are several things that you should do during your visit. Here are the five best things to do while in this historic city.
#1 Glass Bathrooms
One of the essential features of a restroom is the amount of privacy it provides. However, the Glass Bathrooms in Sulphur Springs provide an incredibly less than private feeling for those who need to answer nature’s call.
The city installed all-glass public bathrooms with a clear and panoramic view of the outside. Luckily, the restrooms are private, as those driving or walking by on the outside cannot see through the glass from the outside.
This is one of the most amazing bathrooms we’ve ever seen. It’s an incredibly unique experience that plays tricks on your mind. You may have to plan your lavatory needs to ensure you can experience it in all its glory.
#2 World Champion Stew Contest
Texas is serious about its food, so it’s no surprise that Sulphur Springs hosts a food contest. If you happen to be visiting the area during the fourth Saturday in October, you’re in for a treat! The World Champion Hopkins County Stew Contest started in 1969 and has been hosted in Buford Park since 2009.
This stew contest involves over 150 four-person teams cooking their finest stews over an open fire. Spectators can pay $8 per person and walk from contestant to contestant, sampling as many entries as their stomachs can handle. Each team has its eyes on the prize that involves thousands of dollars.
#3 Outdoor Recreation
Sulfur Springs makes it easy to spend time outside. We’ve already mentioned Buford Park as the home to the stew contest, but the city also has Cooper Lake, Lake Fork, and Coleman.
Coleman Park is a favorite for its 2.5-mile walking trail. The trail circles the lake, and you cross multiple bridges, walk through a tunnel, and enjoy two waterfalls. You can see the various sports facilities, a fishing pier, and picnic areas. This is a great way to unwind at the end of the day and for little ones to burn off any remaining energy before retiring for the night.
#4 Southwest Dairy Museum
The cows have played a significant role in developing Sulphur Springs and the surrounding area. This museum is also the headquarters for Southwest and Southland Dairy Farmers and hosts many of its events and activities in its 10,000-square-foot facility.
The museum is typically open Monday through Friday, but you’ll want to call to confirm availability. Guided tours and experts can answer any questions about the milking process or the dairy industry. This is a great educational opportunity for all ages, so don’t miss it! If you experience the exhibits at this museum, you’ll appreciate that glass of milk a little bit more.
#5 Community Theatre
The community theatre in Sulphur Springs, Texas, has been doing productions for over 40 years. They aim to further a passion for the arts for anyone aspiring to act or work behind the scenes. Some of their previous productions include Lion King Jr., Jungle Book the Musical, and Treasure Island.
Check their website for upcoming shows if you appreciate the arts and want to support the local community theatre. They typically offer five to six productions each year with casts from local volunteers. If you’re in the area during one of their productions, buy a ticket and enjoy the show. It’s a win-win for everyone! You get entertainment and support the arts.
Is Sulphur Springs, Texas, Worth It for Day Trippers?
Should you plan an entire vacation to Sulphur Springs, Texas? Probably not. However, this is a beautiful small town with a rich history that you can easily spend a day exploring. If you time it right, you can enjoy a theatre production or eat yourself sick in delicious stews.
If neither takes place during your visit, you at least have to explore the parks or use the restroom in their famous bathrooms. Just enjoy the view and remember that no one can see you through the windows.
Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA
To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).
You should give it a try!
As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.
Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers who love to score the best site!
We’ll send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA (one per state). Access the list by submitting your email below: