The essential small town: downtown mountains & cliffs, a real cavalry fort, the actual Overland Trail, a historic hotel, the McDonald Observatory, dirt roads, assorted tall tales, and a drug store counter that still serves Sarssaparilla.
Where Mother Nature goes to get outta town: pre-primitive, canyons, mountains, deserts, lava-flows, fossils, wildlife, the Rio Grande, and an actual Pterodactyl. The Big Bend National Park & the Big Bend Ranch State Park are side by side along the Rio Grande.
Bigger small town: courthouse, galleries, motels, restaurants, stores, vistas, civic buildings, Victorian homes, the Chinati Foundation, the railroad, excellent grazing, an NPR radio station, a liquor store, and the Marfa Lights.
Not even a small town: just mountains, desert, scattered ruins, wacky homesites, a Ghost Town, outdoor recreation, a bank, a few places to eat, some motel type joints, a gas station, and that International Chili Cookoff thing.
Bigger small town: galleries, shopping, a historic hotel, civic buildings, a university, churches, parades, restaurants, rodeos, a downtown mountain, athletic fields, saloons, an Amtrak station, and an actual traffic light (blinking only).
Barely a small town: the Rio Grande, a cemetery, some rocks -- plus an actual high-end resort with dining, shopping, an international airport of sorts, and golf. Mexico adjacent. It's the last stop of the fabled road to Presidio.