Earth Day was last week, but we couldn't stop thinking about the one of the best campaigns about keeping the Texas and Earth clean. Arguably, it is one of the most successful public awareness campaigns of all time.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, the "Don't Mess with Texas" campaign was born in 1985. The first TV spot dropped the next year during the Cotton Bowl and featured famous Texan blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan. Other Texas legends to grace a commercial include: Willie Nelson, Matthew McConaughey, George Foreman, Eva Longoria, Warren Moon and Ernest Givins of the Houston Oilers, Jerry Jeff Walker, George Strait, Lyle Lovett, LeAnne Rimes, Sunny Sauceda, and Mark Cuban.
Back in the early 1990s, a sea monster also starred in an ad. See above. The sea monster emerged from the sea, but it was scared away by litter and other trash on the beach. Thus, even if a sea monster can't stand litter, then Texans and visitors wouldn't like it as well. Not that we want to beckon sea monsters to our shores, but that's not an excuse to litter. Fun fact: Apparently, the actor in the sea monster suit almost drown while filming! That's how much people are willing to sacrifice to keep their beloved state nice and clean.
This campaign has partnered with all sorts of Texas institutions to spread the good word.
For instance, Texas Highways magazine reports that Buc-ee's partnered with the Don't Mess with Texas campaign in 2019, and it has featured many themed products like a Don't Mess with Texas hat, a shirt stating "This Critter Does Not Litter," a plush Buc-ee wearing a Don't Mess with Texas shirt. "We want Texas' roads to be as clean as Buc-ee's restrooms," Buc-ee's co-founder and co-owner Arch Aplin told Texas Highways.
Not to be outdone, H-E-B has also participated in the campaign. Beyond selling themed items in its stores, H-E-B has assisted with the art contests by helping with judging and providing prizes.
Unsurprisingly, this slogan has morphed into more than just promoting beautification of the Lone Star State. It is also used widely to defend Texas and all things Texas.
We here at Texas Snax are committed to keeping Texas clean and beautiful. Keep an eye on our product catalog, as Buc-ee's and H-E-B roll out related merchandise, we'll likely carry some. If y'all are aware of some items that y'all don't see on the site, just give us a holler, and we'll see what we can do.