The original building was constructed in 1910 by C.D. Hill, and served as Fair Park first coliseum building. It was used for livestock auctions by day and musical theater performances by night. In 1936 this building was renovated and used as an administrative building for the Texas Centennial Expectations. The building was then used to complement the Art Deco facilities and they even added new art deco facade on the south face of the building.
The Women's Museum
“The Spirit of the Centennial” is a 15-foot-tall statue that depicts a young woman rising from a cactus. This symbol refers to the Texas Centennial Exposition.
During the 1950's the busiling was used as a workshop and storage for the Music Hall and it was there that the father of John Wolfe, our long time stage builder had his theatrical workshop and where John learned his woodworking skills. John recalls "hiding out" in some of the upstairs nooks & crannies behind the front wall.
By the early 1990s, the building was in total disrepair and unsafe.
However, it wasn’t until the founder, Cathy Bonner, came to Dallas in 1996 where friends at Fair Park introduced her to the building. The women coming out of the cactus at the front was all it took to know that this would be the home of the Women’s Museum. The mission of the Women's Museum was to inspire, educate, and stimulate their audience through the exploration of the successes, experiences, contributions and potential of women. However, sadly the museum was forced to close in October 2011 due to lack of funds
However, the building, with it's long and varied history, wurvived in its restored state and is an integral part of the Fair Park Landscape and the North Texas Irish Festival. It is now home to the Irish Culinary Experience, a showcase of culinary arts featuring some of the top Dallas chefs and a number of top local producers and retailers of fine food products.
Also in the Women's Museum is the Durty Nelly's bar, named after that famous bar in Bunratty Ireland. Durty Nelly’s is one of Ireland’s landmark pubs nestlied in the shadow of the magnificent Bunratty Castle and the adjoining Folk Park, it is often the first stopping off point for generations of visitors to Ireland arriving at nearby Shannon Airport.
In our Durty Nelly's we will be selling the usual Guinnes and Smithwicks fare, along with a number of premium brews and a Texas Hill Country Mead.
The chefs are listed on our Culinary Performers page, and below is a small selection of our food samplers.
Goufrais is a UNIQUE cocoa dusted "cool" chocolate confection. Imported from Germany, Goufrais blends the traditional shape of a bundt cake with high quality German chocolate. First you will notice the bitter cocoa, then a pleasant cooling sensation, followed by silky smooth high quality chocolate. Something truly exceptional. Enjoy Goufrais for exceptional moments and to enhance your everyday pleasures.
Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar
Round Rock Honey owners Konrad and Elizabeth Bouffard take the greatest pride in producing only the purest Texas wildflower honey, emphasizing quality over quantity in every step of the harvest. Our hives are located across Central Texas, which gives our honey a rich taste unique to the state. We don't gauge our success by the quantity of honey produced, or even by how much we sell. Our focus is always on the quality our processes, our packaging, our customer's experiences, and of course, our honey.
We believe in our honey so much that if you ever have a question, just look on the back of our bottle. You’ll find our names and phone number. We love to talk about honey, and are available to answer any questions you may have.
In Texas, there are just as many opinions about beef jerky as there are beer and BBQ. Our family started making beef jerky the old fashioned way and this tradition continue unchanged even today. Stop by South Texas Beef Jerky booth and try a free taste of Old Fashioned Beef Jerky (original, habanero & teriyaki) and Sausage (regular & hot); smoked in our Smokehouse using premium South Texas mesquite wood. You can also taste our mesquite smoked Sharp Cheddar Cheese (regular and habanero).
Texas Toffee make a variety of toffees including Almond, Pecan, Walnut, Peanut and Macadamia, topped with milk, dark or white chocolate. These award-winning toffees are unique and flavorful. You can order Texas Toffee on line at TexasToffee.com
Texas Toffee Queen specializes in handmade English Toffee of premium quality using REAL butter, sugar, and roasted Blue Diamond Almonds from California. We craft artisan toffee with the dream of bringing pure bliss and sophistication to every occasion.
I come from a big Sicilian Family so, of course, it's all about great food consisting of the FRESHEST and FINEST ingredients. My father, JoJo LaBarba, showed me how to express love through cooking. His philosophy of using quality, wholesome ingredients is where I find my true inspiration and passion for creating our signature toffee.
I have always LOVED English Toffee and started out making it for friends and family. Due to its popularity, my sister-in-law suggested I bring a few batches to her handmade ravioli shop, "RAVIOLISMO", to sell as Christmas Gifts. Before I knew it, I received my first large order from Dallas Independent School District (DISD).
Matilda (Tilly) Payne always enjoyed making people happy through her cooking. In the early 90’s she learned to make candy; she enjoyed experimenting and sharing her new recipes with her co-workers. Tilly's co-workers loved her candy so much that they convinced her to sell it to them. Her co-workers shared it with their family and friends they also ordered candy. This was only the beginning. Tilly's Old Fasion Candies officially opened for business in 1995. Now with the help of her children you too can experience the pleasure of eating good old fashion candy.
WHH Ranch Company is the oldest family run cannery in the state of Texas. We are famous for our Cowboy Candy, which is candied jalapeños. The products are jalapeños, relishes, chili, salsas, jellys, and sauces.
Along with numerous other chocolate, confectionery and wineries, we debuted our line of handmade liqueur chocolates at the 2016 Grapevine Chocolate & Wine Festival with an emphasis on our spring collection. With some 600 guests and local celebrities attending, our unique chocolates were received with tremendous praise and acclaim.
Everyone had their own favorite and we were asked many times which was our best flavor, to which we would reply that depends on your taste “just remember these were made with alcohol” . Then people have to make their most difficult decision : What do I really want?
We had a great time at this event, met with many great people and enjoyed the party like atmosphere as well as the music, food and wine!
Jams, Jellies and Salsas