Retired Restaurateur Discovers New Talent

Painting of horned frog a stroke of luck

Deborah Ferguson

Horned Frog fever is growing with TCU ranked No. 3 in the BCS and the possibility of playing for a national title.

Naomi Burkhalter came down with a case of it, and it inspired her to paint the school's mascot, a horned frog.

"I have a lot of friends who work for and go to TCU, and I thought I'd try to paint one and didn't think it would turn out that good. And I still can't believe it turned out that well," Burkhalter told NBCDFW.

Burkhalter is very familiar to people in Fort Worth. She and her husband owned and ran Burdav's Cafe on West Vickery Boulevard for 30 years. She also painted a little on the side.

"I started dabbling at it back in 1991 and since I retired, I really took it up," she said.

Burkhalter usually paints flowers and dogs, but she thought she'd try a horned frog just for the fun it.  She used a replica and picture of one as models -- "You can't find the live ones," she explained -- and the finished product is as amazing as TCU's undefeated season.

"Everybody who saw it said I should do a print of it, and I did it. It's gone crazy," explained the amateur artist.

Burkhalter has access to a thousand prints.  She's selling them for $20 from home and from her former restaurant now called Vickery Boulevard Cafe.  The Coffee Urn at 5018 Trial Lake Drive has it, too. The print sells for $25 or $50 framed.

She's simply blown away by all the positive feedback and the demand for her prints.

"I can't believe it's happening to me," Burkhalter said. "It's awesome."

Contact Naomi at 817-300-1144 or for more information, or to purchase a print.

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