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14 Awesome Things to Do in Dallas This Weekend, March 7 to 10

Preach on, Joan. Preach on. (

The Ed Sullivan Show

, 1967)

She's always been bold and brash, and she hasn't softened with age. See for yourself when Joan Rivers brings her stand-up to the Winspear on Sunday.

That's not all: Local street art crew Sour Grapes has an Open Studio session Saturday. Out of the Loop Fringe Festival flicks the gels on for 10 days of indie theater beginning Thursday. And I'm judging a Ms. Star Wars competition and pageant at All-Con on Saturday, so if your soul is as pure and clear as the sands of Tatooine, come on out. (Bring mind tricks.)

Here's The List: Share it with anyone you like enough to get drunk with, and click on the event titles for more information. I'll see you out there. (I'll be the one making out with a bounty hunter.)

Thursday 3.7 Harland Williams at Addison Improv -- Remember the scene in Half-Baked where Harland Williams kills that diabetic horse? Sorta? Great. Then you'll want to take your relationship to the next level and see his comedy set this weekend.

New Paintings by John Walker -- His work has been collected by the Guggenheim, the Tate Gallery, the MOMA and pretty much every other major institution worldwide, and yet we get a chance to see the work of Boston University professor John Walker in the Carillon Gallery of Tarrant County College South. (Don't overthink it, just consider yourself lucky.)

Out of the Loop Fringe Festival Opens -- Comedy! Opera! Dance! Drama! They're all in Addison for the next 10 days at this enterprising stage festival. It's a real gem of a thing and it showcases the best and most innovative works of independent theater happening today. State of the Arts: Art and Technology at the DMA -- While 20 years ago, science and art were rarely caught in bed together, in 2013 we see them as a sort of power couple, able to save one another (and in turn, the rest of us) from their own shortcomings. Tonight, you'll hear DMA's Big Brain, Deputy Director Robert Stein, and others chat about precisely that with KERA's Jeff Whittington.

Friday 3.8 All-Con Kicks Off -- The Imperial Forces have RSVP'd. No, really. There will be roughly 150 out-of-town Storm Troopers at the Con this weekend. There will also be celebrity sightings galore, workshops, burlesque, costume contests, a world premiere film screening of the just completed Pink Five Saga, and me, Jamie Laughlin, judging a Ms. Star Wars contest. Things are going to get really geeky.

Oz, the Great and Powerful -- Aren't you curious to see what Sam Raimi does with an Oz sized budget? Me too. This is an "everywhere" release, but I'll be watching it at Texas Theatre to keep the old-to-new balance in check. They're at least showing it through Monday, so check out the website for possible carry over.

Brahmas World Record Night -- I prefer a Central Hockey League game to a professional one.They don't get caught up in strikes, the ticket prices are low, and they give each game all of their aggression. That takes heart. On Friday, you can add "camaraderie" to the list of reasons to attend a Brahmas game, as they use the audience to break several World Records. (Last year they took Biggest Simultaneous Fist Bump.)  

Saturday 3.9 Sour Grapes Open Studio -- If you haven't been to check out Sour Grapes' work space, you're missing out. Our local street art Jedis don't believe in pretension. In fact, they realize just how boring and daunting gallery openings can be to normal people. So, they put out some chips, open the studio doors, let kids show up with skateboards and show off their work. Basically, it's perfect. Wax Addicts at Circuit 12 -- Sure, this leans more toward music, but this new monthly record party implodes at one of Dallas' most happening art galleries, Circuit 12. For Saturday's installation, you get tracks by DJ Amir (New York), DJ Sober, Luke Sardello, JT Donaldson and it's all hosted by Picnictyme (Cannabinoids / A.Dd+).

Flex-Us 2 at RO2 Art Downtown -- What's that? You don't have a SXSW Film laminate or a wristband for 35 Denton? You were starting to feel sad? Well hell, it turns out that you're actually the lucky one this Saturday night, thanks to a last-minute show by local weirdo collective In Cooperation With Muscle Nation. It's been a year since they put on their last Flex-Us event -- an experimental make-out session between styles and media, and now they're back, and ready to pump you up. The opening reception is on Saturday night: No badge required, kid.

Panic Cabaret -- Tired of the usual burlesque? Try this one out. A combination effort between Whiskey Tongue Burlesque and local dark electronic duo Frausun, this show draws inspiration from the German Weimar culture of the early '20s into the '30s -- think stern faces, exceptional advances in science and the birth of modern design. Don't think about all of that other really horrific stuff that is way less sexy. Dress in black-and-white.

Beauty Rocks at The Parks in Arlington -- All of the major makeup brands will be represented at The Parks in Arlington on Saturday, and they'll offer demos, tips and personal consultations to make you glow. So try them all out before you blow your wad.

Sunday 3.10 Joan Rivers -- She's equal parts icon and shero, mixed with a heavy dose of Tough Broad, but be warned: Rivers isn't for the faint of heart. At 79, she'll say words you've only heard your grandfather use after lots of scotch. And, she'll say a lot of them. She's got the Winspear to herself on Sunday night. It's a whole evening of Rivers' stand-up.

Phillips 66 Big 12 Women's Basketball Championships (Friday through Monday) -- Can't get enough basketball? Me neither. Fortunately for all of us the American Airlines Center shows nothing but net from Friday through Monday as the women of the Big 12 take over. Better make friends with the concession guy now; you'll be seeing a lot of each other.


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