Awesome Things to Do in Dallas This Weekend, Aug. 27 - 30: Parties, Rock Musicals, Shopping

This beauty turns 2.
This beauty turns 2.

Remember when you used to love summer? It meant freedom: no homework, a later curfew and plenty of warm nights by the pool with your friends. Well, that's what it was supposed to mean. I was always grounded. Some things about growing up aren't so bad. But I do miss loving summer. As it draws to an end, we encourage you to take at least one night this week and stay up late. Go do something fun. Party under the stars, shop until you drop, see a show. Get out there, because you're only as young as you are right now. Oh, wait, you just got a minute older. 

Thursday, Aug. 27

FIG Finale
Savvy Dallas shoppers know to pass up the crowds at the mall during the back-to-school rush and save all their anti-anxiety meds for the FIG Finale, a giant discount extravaganza where the prices are cheap and the competition’s a touch steep. That’s OK, you’ve got all those flying elbows and determined bargain hunters on lock, girl — just gird yourself, set your eye on the designer prize and go for it. The takeaway? Women’s, men’s and kid’s togs, shoes and accessories for up to 75 percent off retail during the event from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Fashion Industry Gallery, 1807 Ross Ave. Tickets are $50 for Thursday night’s VIP-only event, while Friday and Saturday shoppers get entry to this shopping Mecca for only $5 at -Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Fannie Brito: Surrender
Artist Fannie Brito blends color, text and imagery in her paintings to magnificent effect. In her newest body of work, titled Surrender, she's interested in stopping the noise, and exploring the avoidance of power and control struggles. In a world filled with distractions, Brito is interested in finding a moment that allows both the artist and the viewer to be present. See the work in opening reception in the upstairs bar at Magnolia Theater in West Village (3699 McKinney Ave., No. 100) from 6-8 p.m. Thursday. 

Author Talk: Anna Bahdken
The Wild Detectives is rapidly becoming one of the best spots in town for an excellent cultural experience on the cheap, and their series of author’s talks only further makes that case. Described by The Wild Detectives as an “overall fascinating human being,” Anna Badkhen is a storied war reporter who has covered conflicts on four continents for publications like The New York Times. This week, Badkhen will discuss her book Walking With Abel, a critically acclaimed chronicle of her time spent in Mali with a tribe of nomadic cowboys. -Amy McCarthy

Creating Our Future Dallas with Carolyn King
You can't have art without politics. That's something the people behind Creating Our Future know well. That's why they're giving young creatives every opportunity to learn what's happening in local government. This week they're encouraging you to show up at the budget town hall meeting to have a voice in what happens with the budget of the Office of Cultural Affairs. Key issues as Creating Our Future sees it will be who they hire for the Director of the OCA, and making sure there is support for some kind of cultural equity grants. Show up at 6 p.m. Thursday at John W. Carpenter Elementary School (2121 Tosca Lane). 

Friday, Aug. 28 

Hedwig & The Angry Inch
Hedwig and the Angry Inch isn’t just a dumb old musical, it’s a dumb old rock musical and, also, not dumb! It was named Best Revival of a Musical in 2014, originally appeared Off Broadway in 1998 and lists David Bowie as a co-producer of the Los Angeles show. The music, not surprisingly, was inspired by the glam-rocking 1970s. Ziggy Stardust, much? In the play, Hedwig, the charismatic lead singer of a German band, used to be Hansel, but had a sex change operation to marry an American and escape East Germany. Though the operation is botched, Hansel assumes a female persona anyway and we get to witness the majesty. Author John Cameron Mitchell based the character on a babysitter he had growing up as an Army brat, who moonlighted as a prostitute in a Junction City, Kansas, trailer park. What are the freaking odds? See the Uptown Players’ performance beginning 8 p.m. Friday through September 13 at Kalita Humphreys Theater (3636 Turtle Creek Blvd). Tickets start at $10 at Lott

Bride of Frankenstein: The Musical
Every legendary film eventually gets a sequel, then a play, then a remake and then a high school production of all of the above. You’ve seen it all a million times and when someone mentions Frankenstein, you’re not sure if you should roll your eyes or roll over dead. So if you enjoy satire and generally making fun of things, Pocket Sandwich Theatre (5400 E. Mockingbird Lane, No. 119) presents Bride of Frankenstein: The Musical beginning 8 p.m. Friday and running through September 26. It will be cute and campy and poke fun at all things Frankenstein. However, some historical content will be included and it will begin and end with the real story of Lord Byron. Tickets are $12-$25. Call 214-821-1860 for more info.. -Paige Skinner

Kevin Smith
See Kevin Smith as you have never seen him before (the guy recently lost 85 pounds). Smith is a man of many hats: He’s directed films such as Clerks and Mallrats; written screenplays; authored books that appeared on The New York Times Best Sellers List; and he acts. A longtime fan of comics, he also owns a comic book shop and has a reality series about it. Smith has toured extensively, telling stories and doing Q&A sessions, and he’s even released a handful of DVDs documenting some of these performances. He will perform twice on Friday at the Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd. The Q&A session starts at 8 p.m. and has been sold out for quite some time. But another show was added with Jason Mewes, who appears in several of Smith’s films. The live recording of the Jay & Silent Bob Get Old podcast starts at 10:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 at -Jeremy Hallock

Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra
In the first leg of a new three-year cycle, Miguel Harth-Bedoya will lead the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra in music by three of the repertoire’s most beloved figures: Beethoven, Haydn and Mozart. The first concert, on Friday, features Cliburn competitor Steven Lin performing Beethoven’s spirited Piano Concerto No. 1.; Mozart’s Overture to The Magic Flute and Haydn’s melodically sly “Oxford” Symphony complete the bill (come early for a pre-concert solo performance by Gustavo Miranda-Bernales at 6:30 p.m.). Violinist David Coucheron makes his FWSO debut in the second concert on Saturday, performing Mozart’s luminous and stirring “Turkish” Violin Concerto. Beethoven’s seminal and dense Symphony No. 2 and Haydn’s Overture to L’isola disabitata also appear (again, arrive early for a pre-concert solo performance by Steven Lin at 6:30 p.m.). The final concert takes place Sunday and features Haydn’s Piano Concerto No. 11, Beethoven’s crowd-pleasing Leonore Overture No. 3 and Mozart’s expressively plush “Jupiter” Symphony; Coucheron will perform pre-concert at 1 p.m. All three performances take place at 7:30 p.m., Friday through Sunday. Tickets start at $20. More info at - Jonathan Patrick

Saturday, Aug. 29
Design District Market

To the geniuses who came up with the brilliant idea to put the latest edition of the Design District Market inside a brewery, we salute you. There was clearly a moment of great clarity at the outset of planning this event, which will be held from 2 until 7 p.m. Saturday; a moment when someone pointed out that plentiful brews and a marketplace populated by local artists, designers, crafters, vintage shops, artisans and other small businesses would probably be a very harmonious combination. And, indeed, it is. The event is (mostly) indoors, which means beer imbibers/shoppers can linger in the cool air, sampling frothy beverages and local wares alike. If you need a break from the chilly climes inside Community Beer Company, 1530 Inspiration Drive, you can step out for kiddie pools, water guns and other games, plus an assemblage of food trucks dispensing their mobile morsels. Otherwise, keep it cool inside with live music by Fox and the Bird, and Danny Rush & the Designated Drivers. See for details. -JDL

Photowagon's 2nd Birthday Bash
If you're looking for all the cool cats Saturday night, you're likely to find them at Hari Mari's flip flop outpost in East Dallas (208 S. Haskell Ave.). In honor of everyone's favorite photo booth, er wagon, which celebrates its second anniversary, there will be a big shindig complete with booze (including Anheuser Busch, Deep Ellum Brewing, Tito's Vodka, TX Whiskey), snacks (including Emporium Pies and Pop Star Popsicles), and you guessed it, a photo booth! Er, wagon. If that's not enough, admission is free, but gifts are suggested: Bring an unwrapped children's toy/gift to donate to The Birthday Party Project, everyone's favorite charity. See? That's a lot of cool stuff at one party. The party kicks off at 8 p.m. Saturday. 

David Everett & Jim Woodson
Tucked into a residential North Dallas neighborhood sits one of the city’s oldest and finest art galleries. Surrounded by acres of lush greenery and a small babbling brook, Valley House Gallery feels like an escape from the expansive swathes of concrete that comprise the rest of the city. This weekend, the gallery opens two exhibitions by Texas-based artists, one by sculptor David Everett and another by painter Jim Woodson. Both promise a unique perspective on Texas’ landscape. See them in an opening reception from 6-8:30 p.m. Saturday at Valley House Gallery, 6616 Spring Valley Road. Admission is free. More information at

Reunion Lawn Party
Hosting your own backyard party is tough. You are the one salving over the grill, you are responsible for providing the entertainment, and then you have to worry about people over-staying their welcome. But hanging out outdoors is fun, even if the weather is in the triple digits. So on the last Saturday of every month, Reunion Tower hosts Reunion Lawn Party at 6 p.m. Saturday at Reunion Park (302 Reunion Blvd.). It has everything a good outdoor party needs — live music, food trucks, lawn games and a beer garden. And best of all, you aren’t the host, so you don’t have to worry about kicking people out once your bedtime rolls around. -Paige Skinner

Luc Fuller & Nicholas Guttlund
Luc Fuller is a Denmark-based painter; Nicholas Gottlund is a Los Angeles-based photographer. This weekend they are having a collaborative exhibition at OFG.XXX (formerly known as Oliver Francis Gallery), 209 S. Peak St.  Swing through the opening reception from 7-10 p.m. Saturday. BYOB. 

Sunday, Aug. 30
Hunter Creates
Your contribution to Dallas should be more than graffiti about Ayn Rand scrawled on the bathroom wall of your favorite dive bar. It should be enjoyed by everyone — not just drunk dudes at a urinal — and it should be something that can’t just be painted over in a couple of years. Make a more lasting mark with Dallas-based muralist Hunter Creates as he assembles a glass mosaic in Lakewood Brewing Company’s taproom (2302 Executive Drive, Garland). If you’re game for this exercise in (relative) permanence, you’ll work with a group over a series of four weeks starting at 12 p.m. Sunday. Begin by learning the basics of the art form, and then once you know your mosaics from your frescos, you’ll be given a 10 by 10 plastic square with part of the design template so you can leave your legacy on the taproom wall. Register today to reserve your spot for the Taproom Mosaic Project — it’s limited to 18 participants and costs $100. Visit for more. -JDL

Deep Ellum Water Balloon Wars
Getting nailed over and over again with water balloons until the backs of your legs were red and your clothes were soaked ranks as one of the very best childhood memories. It was a blast, even though it kinda hurt and it took forever to come down off the adrenaline you worked up trying to dodge that sweet sting of summer. Figuring out the amount of force necessary to soak your opponents without maiming them was also the ultimate science experiment, and by the end of August, you could let one loose that would shatter at the mere suggestion of skin. Water balloons are the perfect balance of pain in the ass and blissful fun, and if it’s been a while since you engaged in the rather delicate art of hurling latex-encased liquid, it’s high time you start shielding your face and readying that throwing arm: the Deep Ellum Water Balloon Wars will launch in the gated area behind July Alley at 275 N. Crowdus St. at noon until 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $12-$20, and proceeds will benefit the 45 Fund, which aids in suicide prevention and awareness. Get your tickets at -JDL

Professior R. Mutt and his Duchampaphones
It's impossible to pinpoint where an idea comes from. What compels one person to creatively rethink something that's come before? Why would a guy masquerading as" Professor R. Mutt" look at the bicycle wheel sculpture by Duchamp – the artist to whom his name is an homage –and think, "By golly, wouldn't it be great if these were instruments?" Who knows! But he did and the results are strange to say the least. He'll be performing on his Duchampaphones amidst Chaos, Ro2 Art's massive, annual group show (110 N. Akard St.). See the performance and the artwork at 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Demonstrations will continue through 5 p.m. More at 

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