Established in the late 1800s as a water stop for the railroad, Odessa is nestled in the heart of West Texas, midway between Dallas and El Paso. It is part of the Texas Pecos Trails Region. Farming and ranching were the main sources of income until the discovery of oil in the 1920s, when Odessa became headquarters for the vast petroleum industry in the Permian Basin. Today, Odessa remains active in the oil and gas business, but manufacturing, educational and medical facilities are all important aspects of the local economy.
The Permian Playhouse offers high-quality, culturally diverse theatrical performances and educational programs. Dos Amigos Cantina is a former horse stable that is now a food and entertainment venue, hosting bull riding and concerts.
The SandHills Stock Show and Rodeo is held at the Ector County Coliseum. Other events include Fiesta West Texas, Firecracker Fandango, Permian Basin Fair & Exposition, and Starbright Village.