The urge to hop in a time machine and head back to our youth is universal. Obviously, science hasn't resulted in a Back To The Future-style time travel option just yet, but that doesn't mean that it isn't possible to take a nostalgic trip down memory lane.
There are still plenty of relics from decades past sprinkled throughout Dallas-Fort Worth, and you won't even have to look that hard to find them. Don't worry about your long gone curfew and head out for one of these ten totally tubular (or whatever slang best fits your era) throwback experiences.
Galaxy Drive-In Drive-In movies are almost as extinct as the woolly mammoth, but we've got a handful scattered throughout the metroplex. Our favorite is all the way out in Ennis, which is not a short drive. But load up the station wagon with Twizzlers and popcorn and hit the open road. There's something about watching a double-feature in the car with your best gal, some old-school movie popcorn, and a little heavy petting or necking to make yourself feel young again. At $7 for an adult double feature (no, not that kind), Galaxy Drive-In is also offering some pretty throwback prices.
White Rock Skate Center If you wasted away your youth with hallucinogenic drugs and the roller rink, squeeze on those old hot pants, feather your hair, and head to White Rock Skate Center. Built in 1973, this skating rink has the nostalgic look and feel that you crave at prices you'll recognize from years past. You probably won't get to hear your favorite Bay City Rollers records, but you can still hum the tunes in your head as you remember that falling off roller skates hurts a lot more now that you're old.
Forever Young Records Thanks to hipsters, vinyl has been making a solid comeback over the last several years. For music fans that aren't looking for indie music on wax, Forever Young Records is the perfect place to find albums that got crushed in your crappy milk crates during the '70s. There are old records of all genres to browse through, and the cases of music memorabilia that line the shop's walls are practically a museum. Get ready to shell out some cash, though - old Monkees metal lunchboxes don't come cheap.
Dairy-Ette Dallas has a few really great throwback burger joints, but none are better than Dairy-Ette. Ed and Andy Prikyl founded this Ferguson Road institution in 1956, and have been making the same flat-top burgers, hand-cut fries, and homemade root beer ever since. The car-hops are friendly, the food is good, and if you go inside instead of sitting in your car, you'll hear lots of good stories from the old timers that have been frequenting Dairy-Ette likely since it opened.
Barcadia The arcade is another institution that at-home gaming technology has sent the way of the dinosaur, but the folks at Barcadia have brought it back in a relentlessly fun way. When you were a kid, the arcade was awesome because there were games, pizza, and soda. Now, you're going to love playing Frogger and Pong alongside some of your favorite adult beverages. If you've already spent all your allowance this week, go on Tuesday for free play video games all night long.
USA Bowl Most of the bowling alleys that have popped up in recent years are much fancier than the nicotine-coated lanes most of us enjoyed in our youth. USA Bowl hasn't updated much in several decades of operating, but the bowling lanes are immaculately maintained and you won't have to worry about fighting a bunch of frat dudes off your space. Fortunately, there's no more smoking indoors, so you can breathe easy, order up a few White Russians, and get your Jeff Lebowski (I mean, The Dude) on.
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The Balcony Club The closest that most of us ever get to 1960s cool is watching Mad Men, but being at The Balcony Club will at least make you feel mid-century. Appearing nightly, the performers here range in genre from jazz and blues to Rogers and Hammerstein, and are generally more talented than you'd think you'd find in a club this small. Best of all, you can drink good martinis until that guy you've been chatting up all night finally looks like a less-wealthy version of Don Draper.
Highland Park Soda Fountain For whatever reason, it's damn near impossible to find a good egg cream or chocolate malt these days, and that's a real shame. This historic location has been around for more than 100 years, and the folks at Highland Park Soda Shop have been jerking their own housemade phosphates and hand-spun shakes ever since. If you can manage to pry your kid away from the video games and iPad, take them for a spin on one of the old-school counter stools while you wait for your grilled cheese or egg salad.
Bloom's Candy & Soda Pop Shop If it seems like many of the spots on this list are very food-focused, it's because eating is one of the best ways to transport yourself back in time. You'll have to drive all the way to Carrollton, but Bloom's Candy is totally worth the trip. You can shop by the decade here, and even find candies that predate the 1930s. Stock up on Abba-Zaba, clove-flavored gum, and C.Howard's violet mints to snack like Gatsby, or search out your favorites from your own decade of birth.
Pete's Dueling Piano Bar Dueling pianos have been around since at least the 1930s, but most of us remember places like Pete's Piano Bar from our bachelorette days or college. Pete's is still full of raunchy packs of bachelorettes and drunken housefraus, but there's something that always feels nostalgic about being there. Drunkenly request your favorite old songs, take jello shots from a syringe, and spend all night pretending that you're fresh out of college and not creeping up on 30 (or 40, eek!). That's what Pete's is best for.