13 Awesome Things to Do in Dallas this Weekend, July 25 to 28

Summer's dehydrated your excess funds, but do not panic: There are four great free movies this weekend, free theater and free art shows to carry you through. In this week's list you'll also find benefits, comedy, celebrity pop-bys and some dazzling burlesque performers.

As always, be a good scout and share this guide with your party planning committee, form a fun mission and click on the event titles for more information. I'll see you out there. (I'll be the one in the monocle, raking in all the free.)

Thursday 7.25 Filmage, the Story of Descendents/ALL (free screening) -- They were the anthemic soundtrack of your teens and beyond. Hell, you still wear that beat-to-shit Descendents hoodie anytime it cuts below 68 degrees. Tonight you'll revisit the crew that serenaded your truancy as Texas Theatre hosts a free Dallas premiere screening of the new documentary Filmage.

Intro to Performance Art (free) -- PerformanceSW is two humans on a mission to enrich your understanding of and engagement with performance art. The group holds PSWxEdu, a weekly series of panels and workshops at the Dallas Museum of Art on Thursdays, beginning tonight. This one's a panel and a primer to catch you up on the form's origins before you dive in. It's free and runs from 7 to 8:30 p.m. It's a part of Available Space, the all-local art show you should also check out.

Blood and Ice Cream Trilogy at the Alamo (free screenings, with Simon Pegg) -- The not-yet-opened Alamo Drafthouse holds a special, invite-only showing the not-released film The World's End. Getting in required stalking Alamo's social media, and those who won (you know who you are) will get to see Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and director Edgar White in the flesh. DRY YOUR EYES! On the outdoor screen Alamo's showing Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz for everyone else! Also free! Plus, beer to buy! Huzzah!

Friday 7.26

Hotter than Hell Burlesque -- A big La Divina Production takes over the Kessler Friday night with thermostat-blowing talent. (Warning: Cartoon steam might chug out of your ears.)

The Iron Giant at Pegasus Plaza (free screening) -- Downtown Dallas Inc. decided to overgift this month with a free Friday night outdoor film series during July. It's had a sci-fi lean and tonight is no exception. They're showing one of the most charming movies about a kind-hearted cartoon robot ever drawn, The Iron Giant. Soak up the pacifism in the moonlight.

Byzantium at the Modern -- The Fort Worth Modern is one-stop shopping: Come for the art, stay for the cinema. They're showing Byzantium this weekend, Neil Jordan's (Interview With a Vampire) newest neck-biter.

Much Ado About Nothing (free) -- The Junior Players tackle Ol' Shakes classic with a revamp, setting the thing in the early '60s. It's free and you can pack a picnic. Saturday 7.27 CD Release Party for Paul Varghese -- We love him. You love him. So let's celebrate our local comedian celeb's first CD release (it doesn't drop until July 30) in this party at House of Blues. It's a stacked bill, with Aaron Aryanpur, Dave Little, Steve Halasz, Jason James, Raj Sharma and Mark Agee opening.

Under the Chandelier (free, 2650 B. Main St.) -- To honor the loss of one of their dearest friends, those stylish scamps of Dallas art collective Caviar Club organized a glamorous night of art, music and do-gooding. There's a big ol' list of participating talent, it's free to get in and 20 percent of proceeds from art sales goes to Charity Water, a nonprofit that provides clean drinking water to developing regions. (Ignore the venue name on the link. It's being held at a nameless Deep Ellum address.)

MAC Members Exhibition (free) -- It's an annual show and a Dallas favorite. The MAC lets its members take over once a year to show off their best projects/collaborations. It's a fun one and certainly worth a visit; especially during the opening night party, which runs from 6 to 8 p.m.

Merlot for Mutts -- I like a benefit that doesn't mess around. One that sticks a booze reference right in the title so you know what you're face-planting into. This wine party and auction costs $30, runs from 3 to 5 p.m. and benefits Habitat 4 Paws, a humane society that provides care and shelter for local cats and dogs waiting for their forever homes.

Goonies (Free) -- While Downtown Dallas Inc. has your free Friday night cinema needs handled this month, the Alamo takes on Saturdays with throw-back jams you love. This week you'll sneak attack back to Astoria, Washington's finest pack of misfit adventure-seeking youth when the they screen Goonies, outdoors for free. (Do: Avoid the tap water. Don't: Say die.)

Sunday 7.28 Stand by Me -- Because secret missions, blood-brother friendships and cherry-flavor Pez are eternally perfect things, the Texas Theatre dusts off Stand by Me in 35-mm glory all weekend. Hunker down in their film cave and blissfully regress.

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