Texas is the Only Place in the World That Has Moontowers
"Party at the moontower."
You may have heard that line when you watched 'Dazed and Confused' back in the day and it turns out, Texas is the only place in the world to still have these things. They used to be all over the country. New Orleans, Detroit, San Jose, and for some reason Wabash, Indiana all used to have moon towers. They were used to illuminate several blocks before street lighting become more common.
The last remaining moon towers are over in Austin, Texas. The city that loves to keep things weird, loves keeping their moontowers. They actually have seventeen spread throughout the city. Back in the 1970s, Texas actually declared them historical landmarks and the city pays a lot to keep them in working condition.
Since many are over 100 years old, it takes a lot to refurbish these things. Around $300,000 per tower. Austin has already upgraded five, but they still have another twelve to do. The current contract was authorized for nearly $4 million, which goes towards repairs and refurbishing the towers. Now the city is hoping to approve an additional $1.9 million.
I've never actually seen a moontower in person. Maybe on my next trip to Austin I'll have to go check one out. It looks like the most famous one in the city is in Zilker Park. They usually turn the tower into a giant Christmas tree during the holidays. Just need to grab a keg before I go hit it up.
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