Two sturdy oak trees wrapped in green lights flank the entrance to Green Oaks Tavern: a two-story brick building in downtown Humble that pumps with blues beats and soulful melodies or improvised guitar riffs most nights.
The historic building’s original 1928 jailhouse bars and brick walls frame a hub for fans of both local singer-songwriters and world-traveled, award-winning musicians from Austin and Fort Worth to Louisiana and Idaho. Owner Debbie Bixby said musicians range from singer Diunna Greenleaf to Latin blues group Sancho & The Lovetones.
Before Debbie and her husband, Steve, opened Green Oaks Tavern, Steve worked as the bar manager at The Club at Carlton Woods in The Woodlands for almost 14 years.
“My husband has been in this business his entire life,” she said. “And I just love the music.”
The Bixbys turned the building, which operated as a combination firehouse, jailhouse, courthouse and county library, into a tavern and live-music performance space in 2016. The remodeling focused on rerouting access to the exit and the restrooms to make the musicians the center of attention, Debbie said.
Green Oaks Tavern has a $5-$10 cover charge on weekends, whether patrons would like to talk at the bar or listen in the music room, but there is no cover charge during the week. Beer and signature mixed drinks are served nightly, but food is limited to complimentary pretzels.
Debbie, a Humble native, was a teacher at Humble High School in the 70s, while Steve lived in Indianapolis before moving to Humble in 2001, Debbie said. Living in historic Humble and showcasing the local musical talent is the perfect combination for the duo.
“This is such a unique building with a unique history; it was special to me,” Debbie said. “So when we had the chance, we decided to take the leap and do it.”
Green Oaks Tavern
211 E. Main St., Ste. 4, Humble
Hours: Tue.-Thu. 4 p.m.-midnight, Fri.-Sat. 4 p.m.-2 a.m., Sun. 4-10 p.m., closed Mon.
Live music: Sun. 5-8 p.m., Tue.-Thu. 8-11 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 9 p.m.-midnight
Correction: The original version of this article incorrectly stated that Debbie Bixby worked at Cactus Moon.
From jailhouse to “Jailhouse Rock”
A historic building in downtown Humble went from a jailhouse, firehouse, courthouse and library to being a staple for nightly live music.
- 1928—The building at 211 E. Main St. is built as a combination firehouse, jailhouse, courthouse and county library.
- 1960s—Sara Raines and her husband buy the building from the city and create a laundromat.
- 1990s—The Raineses lease out the building, and Main Street Pub and Cigar Bar is built. The Raineses’ daughter, Becky, takes over and changes the name to Twin Oaks Tavern.
- April 2016—Debbie and Steve Bixby take ownership of the building, change the name to Green Oaks Tavern and remodel it.
- May 2016—The Bixbys debut Green Oaks Tavern to the public
- December 2017—The Bixbys purchase the building and renovate its lofts to house visiting musicians.