Your health-conscious friend's favorite grocery store got its start in Austin, Texas, back in 1980. Four local grocers banded together and created one of the nation's first natural-food supermarkets. The company started expanding across Texas, then to neighboring states, and eventually across the country. Today, Whole Foods serves up organic produce and crazy bath products at more than 410 stores in 42 different U.S. states, Canada, and the U.K.
6.The Super Bowl
Like the margarita, the concept of a fried corn chip comes from Mexico — but the Frito is uniquely Texan. During The Depression, San Antonio confectioner Charles Elmer Doolin bought a bag of fried chips from a local gas station, and decided he could totally make his own. So, he perfected his own recipe and started selling the chips. They were a hit, and later spawned eponymous restaurants at Disneyland and in Dallas. Doolin partnered with Herman Lay in 1959, forming the Frito-Lay company, which makes all your favorite snacks and is now headquartered in Plano, Texas.
8.The Modern ATM
OK, so maybe just your '90s self who pretended Wite-Out was nail polish will be thanking Texas here, but still. While Bette Nesmith Graham was a secretary at Texas Bank and Trust in the 1950s, she started using tempera paint and a thin paintbrush to cover her typing mistakes. She started bottling her own paint concoction in 1956 as "Mistake Out," eventually patenting it and renaming it Liquid Paper. BIC's similar product, Wite-Out, wasn't trademarked until 1974.
If the baby back rib jingle has ever been stuck in your head, then, yes, you can thank (or curse?) Texas. The ubiquitous chain restaurant got its start in 1975, when Larry Lavine opened the first Chili's Grill & Bar in Dallas. What started as a pretty simple burger joint soon became a fast casual restaurant empire, which expanded to include Macaroni Grill, Maggiano’s Little Italy, and On the Border.
Fajitas are a staple on Mexican restaurant menus today, but they actually got their start in Texas' Rio Grande Valley. Ranch hands and vaqueros are said to have invented the cooking method in the 1930s, but it wasn't until 1969 that they became a commercial success. That's when Sonny Falcon opened up a fajita stand in Kyle, Texas — not too far from Austin. From there, fajitas expanded onto Tex-Mex menus across the state and, eventually, across the world.
Let's be real: Shopping is an American pastime, and the modern shopping center got its start in Dallas. Luxury retail center Highland Park Village opened in 1931, becoming the nation's first group of stores with a parking lot. Its also considered America's first planned shopping center — it wasn't just a bunch of stores built near each other. Highland Park Village was designed with a unified architectural style, "all built and managed under a single ownership."
God Bless Texas!
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