Established in 1882 and the seat of Brewster County, Alpine is located between the Davis and Glass mountains and is near Big Bend National Park. It is a retail center and shipping point for a huge ranching area, headquarters for mining companies, and home of Sul Ross State University. A Texas Main Street City, Alpine has a historic downtown shopping district with several antique stores and art galleries.
Several theater groups put on seasonal productions. Theatre of the Big Bend offers musicals and dramas under the stars during the summer. Big Bend Players present four to six shows each year. The theater department at Sul Ross State University highlights student talent from September through May.
The climate and location make the town a popular vacation area. Visitors enjoy golfing, mountain climbing, rock and mineral collecting, swimming and camping amid spectacular vistas. Special events include the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in February, Big Bend Balloon Bash during Labor Day weekend, and local and collegiate rodeo events. Bed-and-breakfast accommodations are offered in historic buildings.