Lubbock is the largest city in the Great Plains region of Texas and serves as the area's agricultural and economic hub. Lubbock, commonly known as the Hub City, is in the center of the South Plains, an expansive cotton-growing region. Lubbock has experienced steady growth for several decades and today occupies approximately 125 mi² (324 km²). The city is home to approximately 230,000 residents and students. Lubbock is the seat of Lubbock County, the site of state and national parks, two major medical systems, three universities, and is unique among other growing Texas cities in that its sustained economic development and growth are not supported by heavy industry.
Buddy Holly Charles Hardin Holley (1936-1959), better known by his stage name of Buddy Holly, was born in Lubbock. Together with Elvis Presley, he is considered to be one of the founding fathers of rock-n-roll. (In fact, it was watching Presley in concert in Lubbock that led Holly, originally a country and folk singer, to turn towards rock music.) Tragically, Holly's life was cut short at the age of 22 when he died in a plane crash in Iowa, together with Ritchie Valens and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson. Nevertheless, today Holly still lives on in his hometown by way of the Buddy Holly Center.