“I don’t make a pretty bit. I don’t make a high shiny show bit. I make a working bit. Some say a bit is a bit. No, it’s not. It’s like any other working tool. You got to have different things for different horses,” Kirby said.
Working and selling out of their tackle shop-hobby shop factory in Whitesboro, Chad and Michele Rigsby carry the mantle for Renner, and still make a 100 percent Made In America product, only now the world comes to their doorstep via the Internet to buy a better fish-getter.
“I grew up with a fascination for collecting toys. When you look around, you find a lot of toy objects. I got to thinking about them as alive, and they were animate and they could talk and tell stories. I began to paint collections of them as toyscapes and gave them unworldly backgrounds.”
“It’s more than just a person sitting there. It’s a personality. I like to paint beyond what you’re seeing visually and to perceive an inner quality. Painting figures to me is just like painting anything else. It’s part of nature. It’s full of life. People are full of life, and they tell a story in the way they talk, the way they sit, what they look like, and I love to paint the story.”
And then there were the eggs. “For a long time I was drawing and painting eggs because eggs are so fragile, but they hold life, you know. Things like that really fascinate me, things that are delicate, but strong.”
When the engineers closed the flood gates on Denison Dam in February 1944 and the waters of Lake Texoma began to spread out behind what was then the world’s largest rolled earth-filled dam. Soon, people were drawn to the lake for recreation as family attractions popped up around along the shores.
Near the Tulip Bend of the Red River in northwest Fannin County lies another reminder of how early Twentieth Century Texans sought relief from the blistering temperatures of the long, hot days of summer.
Halfway between Denison and Sherman was Tanyard Springs, an area heavily wooded with elms, oaks and hickories and containing a flowing spring. It became a recreational destination to lure paying customers onto his interurban railway, the first in the state of Texas.
Grayson County’s Shangri-La, a special place to escape the terrible heat of a Texas summer, may have been—at least for the privileged—a private paradise known as Chapman Park.
While much of the wildlife of North Texas is slowing the pace of their activities in anticipation of the onset of winter, at Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge along Lake Texoma and Big Mineral Creek, the waterfowl are about to reach the peak of their seasonal cycle.