Soup's Up

And so are other foods, bands and events

7/8

A question for our times: What is the taste of Dallas? Is it asphalt and burned rubber? Sunblock and hairspray? We could spend ages pondering this question, but for our purposes here, the Taste of Dallas is one thing--an annual community event. Held July 8 through July 10 in the West End, Taste of Dallas combines some of this city's pleasures into one experience. For the foodie, there are exhibitions from top-notch chefs, including Kent Rathbun, whose Abacus reigns as one of the most exquisite New American restaurants in town. Also on tap will be Dunia & Espartaco Borga, the couple behind La Duni, whose Latin American cuisine extols not only the best of that vast area's culinary traditions but also its elegance. Music lovers can enjoy a lineup that includes locals such as the foot-stompin', beer-swillin' Boys Named Sue and talented jazz crooner Martha Burks as well as national acts such as El-Ay rock en Español greats Ozomatli and the enormously likable Robert Randolph and the Family Band. For the nostalgists in the house, The Knack and The Fixx double-team on Sunday night. Of course, a festival couldn't be held in Dallas without a nod to our city's sports obsession--thus we have the NBA Rhythm 'N Rims, which includes a staged slam-dunk area and a video arcade. For the younger kiddies, there will be a magician and puppeteer, a children's musician and a giant slide. There will also be shopping--lots and lots of shopping. So load up on the sunblock and the hairspray and hit the scorched asphalt--time to burn rubber to the West End to enjoy the spoils of this here town. Admission is free. See www.tasteofdallas.org. --Sarah Hepola

Fun on the Range

7/10

Go west! West to Fort Worth, that is, and have a blast at the upcoming Family Funday at the Amon Carter Museum. The museum, 3501 Camp Bowie Blvd., offers visitors a number of activities with an old-fashioned Western feel. The singer of the family will enjoy belting out Western tunes, and the quiet types will enjoy listening to stories about the Old West. Other activities include playing games and dabbling a bit in making art. This free event will be held 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday and is open to all ages. And, if you enjoy going west for Family Funday, there's also a new Summer Storytime Tours program that takes place 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays through August. Call 817-738-1933 or visit www.cartermuseum.org. --Kelsey GuyLords of the Rings

7/7

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus ain't what it used to be. In the early-20th-century heyday of such shows, daily life would come to a standstill as elephants, lions, clowns and acrobats emerged from brightly painted boxcars and paraded through the center of town. Lest we get too misty-eyed for the good old days, however, recall the unfortunate "freaks" whose birth defects were huge moneymakers. Animal training was also a cruder science. These days, Ringling Bros. works for elephant conservation and, instead of freaks, an American Idol castoff sings. A change for the better? Judge for yourself at American Airlines Center, July 7 through July 17. Tickets are $12 to $75 at Ticketmaster. Call 214-373-8000. --Rick KennedyDays for Dazed

7/8

The huge cast in Dazed and Confused is probably the best and worst thing about the Richard Linklater film. With so many characters covering every high school stereotype, viewers are bound to connect with at least one of the guys or girls. This is probably nice if you're a tradition-bucking Randall Floyd or a triumphant Mitch Kramer, but we happen to identify with Mike Newhouse, the dude whose revenge plot is blown by a blatant ass-whupping. For that reason, we probably won't go to the Inwood Theatre, 5458 W. Lovers Lane, on Friday and Saturday for midnight showings of the 1993 movie. But the Mitches and Randalls of Dallas probably should. Call 214-764-9106. --Sam Machkovech

 
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