The Nacogdoches County Historical Foundation is throwing Nacogdoches’ first Beefsteak Dinner on Friday, October 21st at Mast Hall.

Beefsteak dinners originated in the early 1900’s in New Jersey and New York and were a time honored tradition around election time.  A friend of a politician would throw their friend a Beefsteak dinner – a dinner full of meat, beer and bread – and raise money for the campaign. These dinners were rowdy and unsophisticated; there are no plates, no napkins and no forks or knives. Men were encouraged to wear their “second best suit because of the inevitably of grease spots” and the events took place on the weekend so the attendees would have time to recover before the work week.

Our Beefsteak event will start at 7 pm; tickets are $75 each and are available at the Nacogdoches Convention & Visitors Bureau, M & S Pharmacy and from any Nacogdoches County Historical Foundation Board member. Attendees will get hearty portions of meat, beer and will be given a commemorative apron to wear during the event and take home with them.  The Nacogdoches Beefsteak dinner directly benefits the restoration of the historic Zion Hill Baptist Church.

What better way to spend a Friday night in Downtown Nacogdoches than to attend a dinner where all the courses are meat, bread and beer? Not only does the Nacogdoches Beefsteak have the best menu around, there will also be great entertainment by Sam Shupak. Our five course dinner is being supplied by several great restaurants and organizations; Auntie Pastas, Clear Springs, CC’s Smokehouse, Butcher Boys, Nacogdoches Medical Center, Pilgrim’s Pride, Ralph & Kacoo’s, SFASU Hospitality Administration, R & K Distributors and the Nacogdoches Jaycees.

The Zion Hill Baptist Church was built in 1914 by Diedrich Rulfs and has stood as a pillar of the community for 102 years. The exterior was restored by the Nacogdoches County Historical Foundation and the church was later turned over to the City of Nacogdoches. Once funds are raised and the interior is restored, the church will be opened to the public as a multipurpose building that houses exhibits on the history of the African American Community, the congregation of Zion Hill Church, the architect Diedrich Rulfs and the history of the Zion Hill Historic District. It will also be available for events, meetings and community gatherings.

This inaugural Beefsteak is sure to be an evening to remember benefiting a building that cannot be forgotten.

For more information, contact the Historic Sites Department at 936-560-4441 or by email at