One small step for man, one new art exhibit for mankind
Even though it's our celestial next-door neighbor, the moon has been overlooked since the days of Buzz Aldrin, Tang mania and the race for space. Sexier projects, such as the Mars Rover and the International Space Station, have eclipsed our fair satellite and left it orbiting without much fanfare--until last month, that is, when NASA officials announced $108 billion earmarked for a manned space mission to the moon by 2018. Never mind the "Why?" or "How are we going to pay for this?" questions. The moon is cool again; bring on the cosmonauts! It's excellent timing, then, that this weekend the Frontiers of Flight Museum opens its Space Exploration Gallery, an area modeled after the moon's surface with gray rock-like walls and lunar exhibits. On Thursday night, NASA astronaut Walter Cunningham will speak on "Apollo and the Golden Age of Spaceflight" at 7 p.m. He recently received a piece of moon rock and will donate it to the museum, making it the only one in North Texas. The gallery opens at 11 a.m. Friday and will include the Apollo 7 Command Module, an original spacesuit, videos about the missions and other artifacts related to the history of space exploration. Saturday, the museum will offer a new twist on its family days programs with hands-on Alka-Seltzer-fueled rockets, propelled by the fizzy antacids. Sounds like a weekend of lunar love and rocket science. The Frontiers of Flight Museum is located at 6911 Lemmon Ave. and is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for senior citizens and $5 for children ages 3-17. Call 214-350-3600. --Leah Shafer
Space Exploration Gallery
They may wear flannel instead of leather, but in the world of home improvement, the guys from This Old House are rock stars. Having them show up at Home Depot is a little like Metallica dropping by your local Guitar Center, but this Thursday, TV contractors Tom Silva and Roger Cook will do just that, meeting fans and answering their "toughest home improvement questions." Design consultant Karen Walden will also be on hand to offer advice, and maybe, just maybe, she'll even show you the best way to display all the free goodies you'll get in your Meet This Old House tour gift bag. It all happens Thursday from noon to 8 p.m. at the Home Depot, 6000 Skillman St. Call 214-750-5927. --Noah W. Bailey
Admit it. You used to make mud pies. We all did. There was something really great about goo oozing through your fingers. Get your adult mud fix at the Fourth Annual Pottery in the Park Festival on Saturday and Sunday, sponsored by the Potters' Studio of Lockheed-Martin Recreational Association. Browse the clay curiosities of 35 local artists, see what's available for purchase or learn how to fire up your own pottery from Krysia Stronski, who will be giving a hands-on Raku demonstration. No need for patience, grasshopper: Buy a vase, brush it with a white-crackled or copper glaze and have it fired in about an hour using the Japanese technique of Raku. Kids can have fun, too, with face painting, abundant sugary eats, live music and rides. The LMRA grounds are located at 3400 Bryant-Irvin Road in Fort Worth. Admission is free. Call 817-732-7731 or visit ww.lmrapotterystudio.com. --Emily Jacobs
Don't Mind Your Manners
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Doing rude stuff in public is way fun. Like when we totally broke wind during a showing of The Notebook, and it was super hilarious because farting and Ryan Gosling just do not, like, go together. And, sure, it wasn't the most couth thing ever for us to do some much-needed booger-diving during Pastor Bob's sermon last Sunday, but at least this week we wiped our treasures on the underside of the pew. Yet sometimes, we like to be rewarded for our discourtesy, like at the Second Annual North Texas Stare Off at the Double Wide, 3510 Commerce St., benefiting the Sports Extravaganza, which is like Olympics for blind kids. For every time our grandma told us it was boorish to stare in public, we'll resist the urge to blink just a little bit longer. You, too, can sign up for $5 to face off with others at 2 p.m. Sunday. Visit www.stareoff.com. --Andrea Grimes
It is often said that the winners write the history books. That certainly holds true for David McCullough: The famed historian has won two Pulitzer Prizes. His new book 1776, published in May, will likely garner him a third. In other words, McCullough is among the world's greatest living nonfiction authors--reason enough to see him in person. But those in the audience will instantly realize they've heard McCullough before. He has narrated innumerable PBS documentaries, most unforgettably The Civil War. In fact, McCullough's gravelly, earnest voice is second only to David Attenborough's breathy Oxford prose for making you feel smarter whether you learn anything or not. McCullough joins SMU's Tate Lecture Series at 8 p.m. Tuesday at McFarlin Auditorium, 6400 Hillcrest Ave. Tickets are $40 to $60 by calling 214-768-8283. --Rick Kennedy