The Best Dance Halls In Texas Where You Can Still Go Two-Stepping
Put on your dancing boots.
Grab your dancing shoes—er, cowboy boots—because Texas’ old-fashioned dance halls are still the most fun place to be on a Saturday night. Dance halls have dotted Central Texas and Texas Hill Country for over 150 years, built by German and Czech pioneers who settled the region. Originally, the structures served as centers of social life where weddings, funerals, holidays, and town meetings were held, as well as weekend dances. As time passed and Texas grew, dance halls became popular gathering places for two-stepping to live music, which included many genres such as polka, western swing, Tejano, blues, and honky-tonk.
On our South’s Best list of Texas’ most beloved dance halls, many have been around for over 100 years, and most have hosted country legends like Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, George Strait, and countless others. Some even offer weekly dance classes for those who want to get out on the floor. Here are the 8 best dance halls in Texas, as voted by our readers.
8. Kendalia Halle
Established in 1903 in a small town around 25 miles from Boerne in Texas Hill Country, this dance hall is a living example of the dance halls established in the area over a century ago. It remains simple in its original construction, keeps the live music on schedule each week, and fondly remembers a time when the revelers arrived in covered wagons. kendaliahalle.com
7. Anhalt Dance Hall
This Texas dancehall is still owned and operated by the Germania Farmer Verein, which is an organization started by German settlers in Central Texas back in 1875 with the goal of helping protect their livestock. It was also used as a stopping point for early settlers traveling between New Braunfels and Boerne. Nowadays, you can still enjoy live music and hit the floor for the weekend dances. anhalthall.com
6. Albert Ice House and Dance Hall
Another close in the running for Texas' oldest dance hall, this old-school spot has been around since 1892. Boot-scooting became popular here under 500-year-old oak trees, and Albert is still known endearingly as a 13-acre town. Plus, it's less than thirty minutes from Fredericksburg (one of our South's Best Small Towns), so you can easily head out for a night of dancing along on your trip to the Hill Country. alberttexas.com
5. The Old Coupland Inn and Dance Hall
As if being a live music venue wasn't enough, this dance hall is also part restaurant and part bed-and-breakfast. Located in the teeny-tiny town of Coupland—that boasts a population less than 300—it brings in people from all over Central Texas during its open nights, Thursday through Saturday. The building has served many functions, including a hardware store, pharmacy, and newspaper office. couplanddancehall.com
4. Mercer Street Dance Hall
A comparative newcomer amongst the many multigenerational spots on the list, Mercer Street Dance Hall didn't take long to capture the hearts of those yearning for a dance hall in the Drippings Springs area when it opened a decade ago. Be prepared for a packed house during the weekend—it's open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday only—and you can even rent a cabin on the property to stay for an overnight trip. mercerdancehall.com
3. John T. Floore's Country Store
Anyone looking for an authentic Texas honky-tonk experience can find it at this traditional dance hall. Since 1942, John T. Floore's has been known for being a popular place of gathering on Fridays and Saturdays, and as much for its live music and dancing as its "world-famous" tamales. Head there from San Antonio, which is less than an hour's drive away. liveatfloores.com
2. Broken Spoke
Opened in 1964, Broken Spoke can be visited Tuesday through Saturday with live music every evening and dance lessons every day except Tuesday for those who want an introduction to two-step and swing. The list of music legends who have played at the club includes Willie Nelson, George Strait, Dolly Parton, George Strait, Kitty Wells, and more; and in 2023, the dance hall was named a designated Texas Historical Marker. brokenspokeaustintx.net
1. Gruene Dance Hall
Texas' oldest continually operating dance hall is still the place to be, even 145 years later. In the late-1970s and 1980s, musicians flocked to white-clapboard venue, and folks could enjoy the musings of Lyle Lovett, Jerry Jeff Walker, Robert Earl King, Willie Nelson, and other country icons. Part of the fun is admiring the many worn, black-and-white newspaper clippings and photographs that adorn the walls from the beginning of its golden era. To no surprise, the Hill Country dance hall was voted the best in Texas by Southern Living readers this year. gruenehall.com
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