Dixie Chicken - The Oldest Bar on Northgate

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That good ol’ Dixie feeling.

Chicken Stories

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Decades of good times

It may have started as just a bar, all those years ago, but it has been much more than that to many aggies. For over 40 years, we’ve been on Northgate, celebrating the big wins, knocking back a few after a tough test, reminiscing and reconnecting with friends. We’ve been there for the awkward first dates, the 20 year wedding anniversaries, the nights to remember and the nights to forget!

Thank you for your stories.

1994

I started drinking at the Dixie Chicken...

15th Reunion

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1994

15th Reunion

I started drinking at the Dixie Chicken in June 1979 during Freshman Orientation. I’m Class of 1983 and have attached a photo of my friends, Donald Drastata,Sheryl Barrett, and myself at our 15th Reunion in the fall of 1994. My husband, Paul Hons, and I became engaged here and return every year as we visit family and check on our retirement land. Our engagement story is already on your stories page. Gig’em!

– Cindy Dobbs Hons ’83

1976

40c Beer

Bonfire Fuel

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Bonfire Fuel

1974

Old Milwaukee longneck beers @ 40 cents a pop

Was there for the grand opening!

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1974

Was there for the grand opening!

Over the years, as a UT medical educator, I like to tell my Aggie students that I attended the grand opening of the Chicken in 1974. That year I stayed in College Station after spring semester ended, to attend the summer session and the Willie Nelson Picnic in College Station. You could have a good time on Saturday nights before 1 a.m. closing, with $3 in your pocket, drinking Old Milwaukee longneck beers @ 40 cents a pop, free crackers, and shooting pool!! It was our favorite hangout with my new (at the time) girlfriend I met that summer, now wife of 40+ years!

John & Patricia Fraser
Pictures of us at her apt. at Boyett Apts. on First Street down from the Chicken, sporting my Old Milwaukee cap; our first portrait at a photography studio close to the Chicken at Northgate.

2013

Sweet Home Alabama!?

2013 Alabama home game…

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alabama vs Texas A&M at Dixie Chicken

Pictured is my wife Diane and great friend Cary Bauer, Class of ’74.

2013

2013 Alabama home game…

The Alabama home game in 2013, a rematch against Johnny Football. This was Bama’s first visit to Kyle Field in an SEC tilt. I was unable to find tickets to the game that did not involve mortgaging my home. So we came to town anyway from Houston, arrived early at the Chicken and watched the game from the friendly confines of the Chicken. As you can imagine, the Chicken was packed that day with about 50/50 Tide versus good guys… About an hour before game time, the sound system all the sudden broke into Sweet Home Alabama to the surprised glee of the Bama contingent. They were cheering wildly, singing and high fiving… about 10 seconds into the song, the music abruptly stopped… after about a 5 second silent pause, Noble Men of Kyle came blasting through the sound system at full volume. Amazing moment. Actually best moment ever in the Chicken for me. The bewildered Bama fans all had that ‘what just happened?’ look on their faces.

Classic…

1974

An enjoyable down-home bar

Don Anz and Don Ganter who met one day…

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1974

Don Anz and Don Ganter who met one day…

“The Dixie Chicken is a creation of two local residents, Don Anz and Don Ganter, who met one day several months ago and decided to do something. That something is a unique blend of new ideas and old objects combined to create an enjoyable down-home bar, a place to meet friends over a cold beer or soft drink and a snack.

The ice cold beer doesn’t come out of a refrigerator. It’s literally iced down — each and every long neck bottle. Soft drinks come good and cold, too, and wine will soon be added to the menu.”

2009

College Choices

Straight to the Dixie Chicken…

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2009

Straight to the Dixie Chicken…

Every summer my dad and I would take a trip to Galveston together and after my sophomore year of high school we were heading back home to Dallas and my dad said “why don’t we go check out college station?” knowing that I wanted to attend A&M. So we jumped off 45 and headed to Aggieland. But instead of going straight to campus or on a campus tour we went straight to the Dixie Chicken. Had a burger and dad had a beer (of course) and we hung around talking with the bartenders on staff. When we finally walked out of the chicken, probably 3 hours later, we both were blown away at how friendly everyone was and how when asked about Aggieland and Texas A&M their faces would light up, you could just see how much they loved this place and how different the environment was. I knew right then and there I wanted to be a Fightin’ Texas Aggie. I didn’t need a campus tour, I just needed a visit to the Dixie Chicken! ????�

Today it is still my favorite place to go on a Friday night. My husband and I have played many games of dominoes in there and it will forever hold a place in my heart.

(Also worked at Chicken Oil for about a year in 2010-2011)

Brittany Coker ‘14

1976

Recent Discovery

Painting Uncovered

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Found this behind the Dixie Chicken keg cooler

1976

Painting Uncovered

Upgraded the keg cooler and in the process of switching them out, we found this gem. On the wall behind where the cooler was there’s a painting on the wall from the bar that was there before it was the Chicken. Back in the days of 65 cent Lone Stars…

1998 and 2015

18 years apart

Random table turns into trip down memory lane

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1998 and 2015

Random table turns into trip down memory lane

Our family sat down for lunch on November 8, 2015. My husband looked up on the wall beside our (randomly picked) table and found our names – signed November 8, 1997. We were in the exact same spot on the same day 18 years apart.

– Dana Chancellor

2015

Celebrated with Tijuana fries

Married at the Chicken…

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Wedding at the Dixie Chicken

2015

Married at the Chicken…

Of the numerous Chicken stories that we have, our favorite, by far was the day we eloped at the Chicken.
On December 12th, 2015 my fiancé Shell and I had planned to elope under the Century Tree with a few of our closest friends. Mother Nature had other plans. It rained over 7 inches that day.
Since our plan was to head to the Chicken for the reception anyway, we decided to call the manager and ask if we could do the ceremony there also. Because there was only 6 of us they said that wasn’t a problem. The staff cheered as we walked in. We ordered a couple of pitchers and proceeded to the back of the room where we were blissfully wed. After that we celebrated with burgers, Tijuana fries, and pitchers of Shiner. It was the best day in our absolute favorite bar. Whoop! Thanks and gig ’em!

1991

I love going back and seeing how little it’s changed...

Fish Camp 1991: First Chicken Experience

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1991

Fish Camp 1991: First Chicken Experience

My first Chicken experience was on the night we came back from Fish Camp entertaining the Fall 91 semester. Let’s just say our counselors gave us a warm welcome into one of the best Aggie traditions—a cold beer at the Chicken (quite a few). From that night I was hooked. I lived just across the street at Walton so I applied for a job soon after. My “interview” with owner Don Gantner consisted of “Where’d you grow up, boy?” And “What’s your daddy do for a living?” I guess he liked my answers because is soon found myself working in the kitchen. I can say I learned to cook making Freddy burgers and Tijuana fries. It was a fun job. I eventually was promoted to work the back bar (long brass one where pitchers are served) and as a “swamper” (the guys who make their way through the crowds collecting empty bottles and pitchers). They were some late nights—I’ve seen the Chicken with all the overhead lights on and it wasn’t pretty. But it was fun and I left each night with a plastic cup full of cash and quarters from my cut of the tip pitchers. Upsides: half price on food and beer (when not on the clock) and flirting with drunk girls. Downside: missed a few football games and being completely sober at closing. I can tap a keg and pour a perfect beer with minimal foam. I love going back and seeing how little it’s changed though pushing a stroller through it once was pretty surreal. It was a key part of Aggieland education and my favorite bar ever. Attached is a pic of the night I christened my ring (I’m holding the pitcher) and a more recent picture of my initials still carved on the wall in the front entry between the glass door and swinging doors. I etched them into the wall one night with my dorm key while checking ID’s.

Russell Kolb

2019

1st official beer at the Chicken

Born and Raised

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2019

Born and Raised

Got a little story for you Ags…This kid was born and raised an Aggie!! This is my nephew Anthony Schimmenti, class of 2020! WHOOP! With the help of his Dad, Mark “Scoop” Schimmenti, Class of ’83, he has always bled maroon! Only fitting to have his 1st official beer at the Chicken for his 21st birthday! Here’s to many more family gatherings at the Dixie Chicken!

1989

16 years later

Met while working in 1989…

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1989

Met while working in 1989…

I worked at The Chicken in 1989…. my last semester in Aggieland. Started as the daytime front bar man and worked my way to Manager.

At the time, I noticed a pretty little sophomore working in the kitchen with Janelle and Freddie, named Maria. Smiles turned into flirts, turned into dates and we spent a few months dating.

I graduated, we broke up, and I moved away but I never forgot that pretty girl I dated while working at The Chicken.

16 years later (2005), I get an email, “Remember Me?” and six months later we were married!! We now have 2 kids (Class of ’26 & ’28).

Ben Denison ’88
Maria Theologos Denison ’94