Billy Bob’s renovation completed — roof raised, poles removed improving sight lines, acoustics

·3 min read

Billy Bob’s Texas has a habit of raising the roof on Friday and Saturday nights, but this time around they’ve done it in the literal sense.

The concert hall in the historic Fort Worth Stockyards that bills itself as the “World’s Largest Honky-Tonk” recently completed renovations that included raising the roof and removing a few pesky poles to improve sight lines to the stage and enhancing acoustics.

“We just try to take the Billy Bob’s experiences from the last 41 years and slowly try to continue to change this to make it a better guest experience,” said Marty Travis, general manager of Billy Bob’s Texas, giving a gaggle of media a look at the completed work.

Travis proudly pointed to the stage where two poles were removed and replaced by a support beam, and the roof raised opening up the view. The left side of the stage was expanded by at least 450 square feet. Sight lines were further improved by the removal of air conditioning units. New carpets were also installed in the front of the room.

Work inside the concert hall kicked off in early July and was projected to last roughly three weeks. The renovation was prompted by an “overwhelming” number of guests who complained about the poles blocking their view of the stage.

Marty Travis, general manager of Billy Bob’s Texas, announcing the completion of the renovations.
Marty Travis, general manager of Billy Bob’s Texas, announcing the completion of the renovations.

According to Travis some of the work was long overdue.

“Pre-pandemic Billy Bob’s was busy and things were moving, and then the pandemic hit causing a major slow down,” he said. “During the pandemic, the staff started to look at the venue and made a plan for changes or things to clean-up and these changes are a part of that.

“Now, we’ll just continue to move forward and see what’s next,” he added.

In early July, frequent Billy Bob’s guest and country music star — Randy Rogers — took his own swing at one of the pesky poles. The pole prevailed.

Billy Bob’s Texas has been in Fort Worth for over a century, first opening as an open-air barn for cattle in 1910. Over the years, the building was used for livestock events, a department store and even as an airplane factory during World War II.

The 100,000-square-foot space was converted into an entertainment hall in 1981. Billy Bob’s has hosted some of the biggest names in music — from country music stars like George Strait, Garth Brooks and Willie Nelson to The Beatles’ Ringo Starr.

Music fans can see for themselves the improvements at Billy Bob’s Texas when the honky-tonk’s main stage opens back up this weekend.

Billy Bob’s Texas is open Monday-Tuesday from 11 a.m.- 6 p.m., Wednesday from 11 a.m.- 10 p.m., Thursday from 11 a.m.- midnight, Friday-Saturday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and 6 p.m.- 2 a.m. and Sunday from noon- 6 p.m. at 2520 Rodeo Plaza.