15 Awesome Things to Do in Dallas This Weekend, November 8 to 11

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ArtCon8Final from Kyle Kondas on Vimeo.

Hey Dallas, I hope you've been doing your power lunges because this Saturday requires a full-court sprint. There's a pop-up video game art arcade at CentralTrak, then that giant philanthropic art-a-palooza bash, Art Con 8, over on Dragon Street, ending off at the Dallas Observer Music Awards for an all night showcase of your absolute favorite local bands. Start eye-dropping 5 Hour Energy drinks; you're about to enter the fourth party dimension.

Be a good friend and share this list with your favorite gang of rebel rousers, then click on the event titles for more information. I'll see you out there. (I'll be the one parallel parking a unicorn.)

Thursday November 8 Fair Park Deco -- As it was revealed in 1936, the Fair Park area was a futuristic wonderland. But now, most of that cool deco stuff is gone. We have artifacts, vestige buildings that are filled with interesting stories and folklore, and until now that had to be sufficient. Two authors from Houston set out to fix that by writing a rad new book focusing on Fair Park in its heyday, during the reveal of the Texas Centennial Exposition. They're speaking tonight in the Hall of State and will present their book, filled with more than 300 photographs, and old newsreel footage from 1936. It's free.

Impressionable: Printmaking Techniques and Innovations -- University of Tennessee professor and printmaking wizard Beauvais Lyons joins a local panel of smartypants on Thursday night to discuss the rapidly-changing world of printmaking. Lyons' own work boarders on anti-scholar; he monster mashes together critters that just don't belong and gives the artworks highly academic seeming names, like Female North American Raccoon Crow. Hear their thoughts on the artform and its future tonight, but first you better RSVP. It caps off at 100. Lone Star Film Festival -- Billy Bob Thornton, John Hawkes and other famouses are in town today for this four-day film festival taking over Fort Worth. The showcase list looks pretty great, so slip away and check it out.

Friday, November 8 Cabaret Ooh La la -- This Denton-based burlesque showcase is BYOB, so you don't have to rely solely on the ladies' intoxicating beauty.

Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert -- This chat session over at the Bass Hall is titled "Good vs. Evil," but it really doesn't matter which chef represents the brighter side or the damned, we're all there to drool over Bourdain. Terminal Compositions -- Gary Farrelly is a man you'd like to travel with. He's able to put enough space between himself and the gritty grumbles of airport life to see the beauty inherent to the action. From airline blueprints to bureaucratic red tape, the runways and terminals create patterns, which look lovely once filtered through Farrelly's artful eyes. It's at RO2, downtown.

Saturday, November 10 Dallas Observer Music Awards -- Have you bought your ticket for this yet? It's huge. Like, way mega, super, giant-athon, BIG. It's a massive festival for very little money, and all of the bars are within vomiting distance of one another. Here's the line-up. We'll all be there, getting rowdy.

Skyfall, with Dance Party -- Leave it to Texas Theatre to snatch up a 35mm copy of the newest, wildest, most bikini-briefed Bond flick yet. They're screening it now, but on Saturday night they celebrate the thing with an eyepatch-worthy dance party -- a themed affair called The World Is Not Enough II.

PolaWalk at the Zoo -- There's a group of photographers who reject the new digital this and that. Who see the beauty of a tangible artifact. Who, I don't know, really like fanning Polaroid film and waiting for it to develop. Occasionally they meet up at a venue, then go exploring with their cameras, searching for awesome photo opportunities. This Saturday, they're doing it at the zoo. If you've got a Polaroid and some film, you should check it out.

Switching Gears "Grander Opening" -- Sure, they had a little party when they first opened, but this Expo Park bike shop has again upgraded its space which translates to: another excuse to party. There's an alleycat race and gold sprints, for energetic types.

Art Mission, in three parts: If done properly, you can check out the next three great art events and STILL make it to the second half of the DOMAs. 1.) Generations at the Power Station -- Oil and Cotton, The Writer's Garrett and the Powerstation have created a mighty triforce in honor of family education. This free afternoon event culminates in a complimentary barbeque at 6 p.m., and features an iPhone photography class at 3, a poetry workshop at 4 and cool interactive family activities all afternoon. Check it, dig?

2.) Tiny Thumbs at CentralTrak -- This is the very first reveal of this new Dallas group, which focuses on the artistic merits of indie and art video games. They're taking over the Expo Park gallery and artist residency for a full-scale installation: A one-night pop-up arcade of art games. They'll project the things, hang monitors on walls like canvases and even have one, designed by local UT Dallas students, lighting up the interior of a tent. That last one is called "Constellations" and it lets you navigate through the universe, creating star patterns as you go.

3.) Art Con 8 -- Those conspirators are bringing the party back with the eighth installment of Art Con, which kicks cash to Girls' Rock Camp Dallas and the ceramics program over at W.T. White Academy of Visual and Performing Arts. There's music by the Blackstone Rangers, Burning Hotels and Daniel Hart and of course, that giant art auction that you'll want everything from. You better support, then head it over to the DOMAs for MEGA DALLAS PARTY NIGHT.

Sunday, November 11 Dr. Sketchy's Art Class -- If you think still life drawing is your calling, you should pick a more interesting muse than a fruit bowl. At Dr. Sketchy's monthly still life class at La Grange, you get to draw a beautiful burlesque model while you guzzle alcohol. Don't tell too many people or EVERYONE will want to be an artist.

Travel and Adventure Show -- Normally I don't recommend expos, because they sound lame. This one is a little different: You can zipline, get inside one of those inflatable hamster balls that floats on water and other cool stuff. It ain't your daddy's pamphlet party.

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