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A Guide to Fort Worth During the PBR World Finals

Bull riding’s most prestigious event, the PBR World Finals, has finally—and rightfully—made the move to Cowtown. Here’s how to make the most of the show and the host city.
By Sarah Bennett, and |
Hotel Drover
Elizabeth Lavin

Historically hosted in Las Vegas, the PBR World Finals tried on AT&T Stadium for size in 2020. But after a final round in Vegas in 2021, it has decided that the Dickies Arena in Fort Worth is just the right fit for its new, permanent home. Don’t want to miss a thing? Haul your Airstream to the Ridn Rank RV Park, where you can count on a space with a full hookup, hosted barbecues, meet-and-greet access with the riders, and daily drink tickets. Outside the arena, you’ll find live talk shows, ultimate freestyle bullfighting, and Bulls Gone Wild (think late-night comedy, game show challenges, and bulls).

The Will Rogers Auditorium will host ticketed concerts for Travis Tritt, LeAnn Rimes, Charley Crockett, and Robert Earl Keen. Or make your way to Mule Alley Thursday through Saturday for the nightly street parties. May 13–22.

Where to Stay

Jonathan Morris and Allen Mederos turned a former dry ice warehouse just down the street from Dickies Arena into Hotel Dryce in 2018. Fort Worth-based designer Sarah Pederson of Mana Collected keeps things funky in the 21 guest rooms with a mix of modern furniture, ethically sourced Oaxacan textiles, and photos of multicultural cowboys. Grab a Dryce Margarita from the bar to enjoy on the lively patio. The hotel is just a short walk from Dickies Arena. (Keep an eye peeled for Leon Bridges.)

3621 Byers Ave. 817-330-9886

All Booked? Try Hotel Drover in the Stockyards or Hotel Otto, which is about a 10 minute drive to the arena.

Where to Eat

Chef Juan Ramón Cárdenas first opened his celebrated Don Artemio restaurant in Saltillo, Mexico, naming it after Mexican writer, lawyer, and diplomat Artemio de Valle Arizpe. Now he and owner Adrian Burciaga have opened a second location in Fort Worth. The architecture and design reflect the homes of the city (incorporating 20,387 clay bricks made by Saltillo’s brickmakers), and the space is filled with pieces from Saltillo artists. Order the Cabrito al Horno Lento en Salsa de Tomate, which is a kid goat slow-roasted and bathed in tomato sauce, paired with a fresh cabbage salad with pickled red onion. The tender cabrito is served in a large bowl-shaped plate, designed to model the mountains in Saltillo. Finish with the Tres Leches del Desierto. For this deconstructed version of the classic, evaporated milk is poured over a crumbly sponge cake, which is topped with vanilla ice cream shaped like the ammonite shells found in the Coahuila desert.

3268 W. 7th St. 817-470-1439

Can’t get a table? Grab a beer here: Second Rodeo Brewing and Sidesaddle Saloon

Where to Shop

A new mixed-use development is drawing a decidedly hipper contingent to the historic Stockyards district. Dubbed Mule Alley (a nod to the converted horse and mule barns that now house shops, restaurants, and live entertainment venues), the development has revitalized the once touristy area. Anchoring the development is Hotel Drover, an Autograph Collection luxury hotel that opened in March 2021 but was designed by HKS to look like it’s always been there.

200 Mule Alley 817-755-5557

Since SMU grad Lizzy Chesnut launched City Boots in 2016, her vibrant, sophisticated designs have given modern cowgirls the opportunity to create statements of their own. Schedule an appointment or stop in to choose or customize a pair. The current trend is height, Lizzy says, “as tall as they can go.” City Boots recently launched the knee-high Rainbow Lightning boots ($1,450), which sold out upon their release but can now be preordered. For an added touch, customize your pulls with a name, phrase, or date.

3612 W. Vickery Blvd. 817-688-9691

Hat tip this hat bar: Flea Style.

Where to Relax

Tim Love’s empire now includes more than a dozen venues, ranging from Mule Alley newcomers Ático and Paloma Suerte to Stockyards staple White Elephant Saloon. His latest side hustle? A riverside micro resort made of shipping containers called Hotel Otto. Love initially launched Gemelle, an Italian restaurant named for his twin daughters, along the west fork of the Trinity River in 2019. Excess riverfront land provided the space for eight containers (otto means eight in Italian). Opened in July 2021, it features an Aperol bar, a pool made from yet another shipping container, and a 10,000-square-foot garden, where many of Gemelle’s ingredients and cocktail garnishes are grown. But don’t expect everything on-site to be au naturel. Each room is decked out with Hermès linens, a full bath, and its own bar.

4400 White Settlement Rd. 833-468-8639

Where to Drink

Though Sidesaddle Saloon celebrates cowboys and cowgirls alike, there’s definitely an emphasis on the ladies; cocktails are named after famous cowgirls, and a weekend visitor might bump into a bachelorette party or two.

122 E. Exchange Ave. 817-862-7952

Fans of Truck Yard will love Jason Boso’s newest concept, Second Rodeo Brewing. Stop in for a cold one crafted by brewmaster Dennis Wehrmann of Franconia Brewing fame. You can also grab a bite to eat, then pick a spot on the upper balcony or covered “bar garden” to take in some live music in the “outlaw country” vein. Boso books local talent as well as touring musicians from Austin, Oklahoma, and Louisiana.

122 E. Exchange Ave. 817-240-4959

Where to Find a Hat

Just as with its locations in Deep Ellum and The Star in Frisco, Flea Style’s Fort Worth outpost—and its little sister, Wide Brim, tucked inside Hotel Drover—is stocked with owner Brittany Cobb’s signature mix of jewelry, apparel, home decor, and locally made goods. But perhaps the biggest draw is the in-store hat bars, where you can custom design a Stetson with scarves, feathers, and charms.

Flea Style: 128 E. Exchange Ave.; Wide Brim: 200 Mule Alley

Authors

Sarah Bennett

Sarah Bennett

Aileen Jimenez

Aileen Jimenez

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Aileen is the research editor for D Magazine and D Home. A proud Dallas native, she is happily getting the…
Kelsey Vanderschoot

Kelsey Vanderschoot

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Kelsey J. Vanderschoot came to Dallas by way of Napa, Los Angeles, and Madrid, Spain. A former teacher, she joined…

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