10 Facts About Texas’ History in Playboy Magazine
In the long history of possibly the most recognizable magazine ever, Texas (and even Wichita Falls) has an interesting role in the world of Playboy.
For this list, we're looking at the role Texas played in the 60+ year history of Playboy. The magazine may not be the cultural icon it once was, but Texas plays a substantial role in its legacy.
Here, we're mainly going to be discussing women who were the featured Playmate of the Month. Trying to account for all of the Texas women who appeared in special editions, college issues, and so forth would have just too many possibilities to cover.
How in the hell did I live in Wichita Falls TWICE and not know a woman from there was a Playmate of the Month?!
Elaine Morton from Wichita Falls was Miss June 1970. Not only is "Wichita Falls' Only Playmate of the Month" a noteworthy title, she also holds the distinction of being half of the first cousins to be Playmates of the Month when her cousin Karen Elaine Morton from California became a PMOM less than two years later for the January 1972 issue.
Out of the near 800 Playmates of the Month (including the few that have the honor of being PMOM more than once), no state has produced as many as California with 165. However, the Lone Star State has squeaked by with a 2nd place holding, producing 42 Playmates of the Month, just one more than both Illinois and New York with 41 each.
Marian Stafford was the first lady from Texas to be PMOM when she graced the pages of Playboy in the March 1956 issue (Her pictorial holds another distinction we'll get to later). And the latest woman from Texas to be PMOM was over two years ago when Elizabeth Victoria Elam appeared in the March 2017 issue (another pictorial of distinction we'll cover in a bit).
Of the 42 women from Texas to be Playmate of the Month, 4 of them went on to be Playmate of the Year. The first in 1967 when Lisa Baker from Detroit, TX won the title. It was another 26 years until another Texas playmate won when the iconic, and infamous, Anna Nicole Smith from Houston was voted PMOY in 1993. Only 3 years later Stacy Sanches became the 3rd Texas-born PMOY, and 9 years ago Hope Dworaczyk became the 4th, and currently final, Texas PMOY.
Marian Stafford was not only the first Texan Playmate of the Month, her pictorial also marked where we got the term "Centerfold", featuring the first fold-out picture for a PMOM.
In the 60+ year history of the iconic magazine, the worst mistake made was in 2016 when the decision was made to change the magazine to a non-nude format and abandon several mainstays like the cartoons and interviews. It wasn't about the loss of nudity, but the loss of the recognizable Playboy style. That decision didn't last too long as the magazine admitted the error of its ways and switched back to its nude roots and brought back the ditched sections. During its non-nude stage, only one Playmate of the Month was from Texas: Ali Michael, Miss July 2016.
When Playboy rectified their mistake and went back on their decision to go non-nude, Elizabeth Elam from Dallas was not only chosen to be the first PMOM in their return to nude, she was also featured on the cover.
Celebrities posing for Playboy was once a pop culture event. That's definitely died off over the past two decades, with post-career decline Lindsay Lohan being the biggest celebrity to pose for the magazine since the new millennium. But when Celebs were regular fixtures of the magazine, some famous ladies from Texas ended up in the pages, like Farrah Fawcett showing up in the December 1995 and July 1997 issues, Shannon Elizabeth promoting the release of 'American Pie' with a pictorial in August 1999, and Olympian Amy Acuff appearing on the cover and in a pictorial for the September 2004 issue.
In 2013, Cristy Nicole Deweese was released from her job as a Dallas-area High School Spanish teacher after it was discovered that she posed for Playboy.com two years prior under the name "Cristy Nicole" as the site's Co-Ed of the Month.
CLICK HERE for our coverage of Cristy's termination.
Did you know that Texas Tech had their own version of Playboy for 20 years? The school's version of Playboy was featured as part of their yearbook, La Ventana, from 1961 to 1981, featuring the women of Texas Tech posing for non-nude pictures.
You can see more of Texas Tech's version of Playboy HERE.
The idea of a Playboy nightclub seems like a weird one today, but Hefner was all about the nightlife and seeing a Playboy club pop up in major cities across the country wasn't unheard of. In the late 70s, a Playboy Club opened in Dallas in the same building as the Dallas Cowboys headquarters. Though it was a popular destination for the Cowboys, the club didn't resonate well with conservative Texans, and shut down after only 4 years.