Things To Do

5 Totally Free Culture Events For The Hopelessly Broke

Being broke is the actual worst. Not only are you worrying endlessly about paying the bills and having enough cash to support your booze habit, you also can’t afford to get out and do anything to distract you from all that fretting. Fortunately, this week there is plenty of interesting and cool stuff to do that will only cost you a couple bucks in gas or a DART pass.

You might not be able to afford tickets to fancy events or even not-so-fancy events, but that doesn’t mean you have to deprive yourself of culture. This week, you can check out these five art, music, history and literature events without spending a single dollar. Now you have no excuse to continue sitting around rotting your brain with countless hours of basic cable TV. (Assuming it hasn’t already been shut off yet.)

Classical Open Mic
Tuesday, October 29

If you don’t have the cash to throw down for tickets to a fancy symphony or opera, you can check out the next best thing for free at Buzzbrews. At Classical Open Mic, professional and amateur musicians of all kinds gather to play classical music in a setting where you can order coffee and nachos, making it infinitely better than a stuffy concert hall. If you think you’re a dope flautist or have vocal chops, you can sign up for a two-song slot to show off your skills.

Tram 83 Book Release Party
Thursday, October 1
The Wild Detectives

Deep Vellum Publishing is doing some really exciting things, and publishing Congolese poet Fiston Mwanza Mujila’s first work of fiction might just be among the coolest. Presented in conjunction with the French Consulate, this event will feature a reading from the author in both English and French, followed by a Q&A session. Also following the reading and discussion will be live jazz, performed by Jim Sangrey and SUMMUSIC. If you want to feel really, really cultured when you’re really, really broke, this is exactly where you need to be on Thursday night.

B.Y.O.B. Art History
Thursday, October 1
Kettle Art

Arts educator Justin Clumpner has the right idea — pairing anything with booze, especially art history, makes it infinitely better. Round up those stray cans of beer in the fridge or scrape together quarters for a sixer of something cheap, and bring it up to Kettle Art on Thursday. Clumpner will present a lightning-fast, “speed-reading” version of art history, from cave drawings to 2015, after which the gallery will screen award-winning short films from Salvador Dali and Marcel Duchamp in keeping with Kettle’s current surrealist exhibition.

Naked Stage: Big Tex
Friday, October 2

Texas loves its tall tales, especially those inspired by the newly restored creeper who towers over the State Fair of Texas. In keeping with this love, five of Dallas’ best storytellers, including the Observer’s own Lauren Smart, and Best of Dallas winner Rawlins Gilliland, will share some of their best stories about our great state. It’ll be up to you to separate truth from fiction, but these stories will likely be so compelling you won’t even care.

Half Price Books Clearance Sale
Saturday, October 3
Dallas Market Hall

The admission and parking for this massive sale at Dallas Market Hall are both free, and you could possibly score an incredible find for just $2. Every year, Half Price Books liquidates their inventory at ridiculously low prices, which means that you can spend an entire day browsing through the zillions of books, vinyl records, magazines and other random shit. Even if you’ve just got $10, you could come away with 5 new books that will keep you from sounding like a total idiot at your next dinner party.

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Amy McCarthy