The 18 Best Things to Do in Dallas This Week, Nov. 25 – Dec. 1

Run, you turkey.
Run, you turkey.
Chris Cast/Flickr
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Monday, November 25

Gaylord Texan: Lone Star Christmas
Why do we get the feeling that the Gaylord Texan counts down the days until Christmas, starting every Dec. 26? If you also can’t get enough of Christmas, then visit the Grapevine resort, which has more Christmas spirit than all of frickin’ Whoville. This year, they’re back with 2 million holiday lights in a 125-acre “Winter Wonderland,” with a Charlie Brown Christmas-themed ice sculpture display, an outdoor ice-skating rink, giant nutcrackers and miniature train sets. Lone Star Christmas' activities include snow tubing, holiday-themed escape rooms and gingerbread decorating stations. It runs through Jan. 5, at 1501 Gaylord Trail, Grapevine. Pricing varies among individual attractions and bundles. For more information, visit Gaylordtexan.com. Eva Raggio

Tuesday, November 26

Dear Evan Hansen
Dear Evan Hansen earned six Tony Awards and massive critical praise for “reinventing the musical” by examining heavy subjects related to mental health, like anxiety and teenage suicide, once again, in a … musical. The show tells the story of loner Evan Hansen, who struggles to make friends and who is mistaken and praised as the best friend of a boy who recently committed suicide. Yes, it all sounds like a real downer, but the show has become a big hit with teens — the generation that made Billie Eilish into an icon, so ... OK., it all makes sense. The show runs from Nov. 26 to Dec. 8, at Music Hall at Fair Park, 909 1st Ave. Tickets are $45 and up at ticketmaster.com. Eva Raggio

Wednesday, November 27

DSO: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Another week, another offshoot of the Harry Potter franchise, this time by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra at the Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St. The DSO is screening Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in high-definition accompanied by the orchestra playing composer John Williams' "unforgettable" score. (Oh, yeah? Hum a few bars, someone. Anyone?) We understand why, of course: Arts need all the support they can get; Potter puts asses in seats; and if John Williams' bombast is the price of keeping the Prokofiev et al coming, so be it. But between the Potter parodies, trivia nights, costume events, etc., let's hope that cash cow dries up before we get to Cooking With Harry Potter or Bass Fishing with Ron Weasley on basic cable or Potter-endorsed windshield wiper blade refills at your local gas station. The DSO event takes place at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and noon Sunday. All performances except Friday's were sold out at press time (try the magic of ticket brokers). Remaining tickets start at $93 at mydso.com. Patrick Williams

Thursday, November 28

Planes, Trains and Automobiles
It’s a bit ironic that so many families escape the Thanksgiving scene by heading to the movies, and yet there aren’t many quality Thanksgiving films. But Alamo Drafthouse Las Colinas, 320 W. Las Colinas Blvd. in Irving, solves two problems with one screening, or rather, one movie party. After the tryptophan nap and family political argument No. 2, escape to a 6 p.m. party screening of the 1987 John Hughes classic Planes, Trains and Automobiles. Have a cocktail or two (without breaking into John Candy and Steve Martin’s mini bar) and enjoy a break from the holiday and pre-Black Friday hustle while watching two men encounter obstacle after hilarious obstacle as they desperately try to get back home in time for turkey. It holds up two decades later and can still warm a few heartstrings after all that rib splitting. Tickets are $13.69 plus fees. Purchase online to reserve seats. Visit drafthouse.com. Oh, and shower ring accessories are encouraged. Merritt Martin

YMCA Turkey Trot
If hanging out with your family for a few hours or helping prepare the big meal are things you’d rather do less than run, the Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot is the annual local tradition for you. Registration for the 5K or the 8-mile race is $43 for untimed, $48 for timed up through Nov. 27 and $44 and $49, respectively, the day of the race. Kids can participate in the 1K Junior Trot before the race for $25 or, if you really want to wear the little buggers out before the family dinner, both the Junior Trot and the Turkey Trot for $54. The Junior Trot starts at 8:45 a.m. Thursday and the main event follows at 9 at Dallas City Hall, 1500 Marilla St. Passes to the Roost, formerly known as the VIP area, include semiprivate restrooms, breakfast, post-race snacks, coffee and other beverages and a face painter for $25, or $35 to add two beers, wines or mimosas. Call 214-954-0500 or visit ymcadallas.org/turkeytrot to sign up or for more information. Jesse Hughey

Friday, November 29

Mocky Horror Picture Show Holiday Special
They call it Black Friday because it's the most dangerous time for American consumers to do any retail shopping. Today, you could either risk your life to buy a toaster that's 70% cheaper than usual or enjoy a good laugh and a movie at The Mocky Horror Picture Show's Holiday Special at Stomping Ground Comedy Theater, 1350 Manufacturing St. in the Design District. The live, movie-mocking comedy show that lets the audience make jokes and throw props at the screen will do a special holiday public mockery of the Vincent Price classic House on Haunted Hill ... because Christmas? There will also be plenty of other festive sketches, contests, prizes and surprises. Tickets are $10 if you buy them online at StompingGroundComedy.org and $12 if you buy them at the box office on the night of the show. Students can pick up tickets for $5 with a valid ID. Danny Gallagher

The Nutcracker
It’s the only Christmas ballet that really matters: The Nutcracker unleashes sugarplum fairies and antagonistic mice as the Texas Ballet Theater brings back their much-loved annual fever dream. Clara and Fritz throw in with a legion of animated dolls and toy soldiers in the beautiful, festive Tchaikovsky-scored classic at the Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St., beginning at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29. Choreographed by Ben Stevens, the TBT brings the Kingdom of Sweets straight to the Arts District; performances run through Sunday, Dec. 8 with shows Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m.; and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $25 to $125 at texasballettheater.org. Jennifer Davis-Lamm

BLACK TAFFY, one of the 2019 Dallas Observer Music Award nominees for Best Electronic Act, will take over the Limbo Room at Ruins this Friday night with support from fellow Dallas House act Raimi. BLACK TAFFY's Donovan Jones has been quite prolific since winning the DOMA for Best Experimental/Noise Act at the end of 2018. After the release of the Elder Mantis album in February, BLACK TAFFY went on a nationwide tour this past summer before returning home and releasing Half Light, a themed beat tape utilizing scores from original Twilight Zone episodes, earlier in November. Born into a family of Pentecostal music ministers, Jones grew up with a deep understanding of music's ability to entrance audiences and enliven their spirits. Composed with a vibraphone, cassette decks and other outmoded mediums, BLACK TAFFY's music occupies the space between peace and paranoia — a space where you'd like to sit down and chill, but there's just something calling you to get up and move. It starts at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 29, at Ruins, 2653 Commerce St. Tickets are $10 at eventbrite.com. David Fletcher

Le Cure
The news hit a few months ago that legendary post-punk band The Cure is finishing recording their first album in 10 years. To get acquainted with or refresh your memory of the band's extensive musical catalog before the album's release (which has so far been reported as "soon"), check out Le Cure, the Dallas-based Cure tribute band that's, like, really, really good. They're playing at The Foundry Bar in Dallas, so if you throw back a couple of beers, it's sort of impossible not to assume it's the real Robert Smith and the gang. The free show starts at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 29, at The Foundry Bar, 2303 Pittman St. Diamond Rodrigue

The DOMA nominees for Best Folk Act, Loyal Sally, are playing a free show this week for their loyal following.
The DOMA nominees for Best Folk Act, Loyal Sally, are playing a free show this week for their loyal following.
Roderick Pullum

Loyal Sally
The Dallas native folk-rock outfit Loyal Sally is set to headline at Three Links at this year's Dallas Observer Music Awards Showcase on Dec. 7. The band is up for Best Folk Act. If you haven't seen Loyal Sally live before, and you want to familiarize yourself ahead of the DOMAs, you can catch the band's 10 p.m. set at The Free Man Cajun Cafe & Lounge this Friday. In March, the band released the music video for their song "Postcards." The band told the Observer the track was produced by Jaret Reddick of Bowling for Soup and recorded at the Dallas studio Valley of the Kings Music with help from owner Billy Syn. The music video was later filmed and produced by Dallas-based production company Ludisian Legion Entertainment. The free show starts at 10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29, at The Free Man Cajun Cafe & Lounge, 2626-2630, Commerce St. Jacob Vaughn

Mitchell Ferguson Band
With a full head of hair, a rich beard and a whole lot of swagger, singer-songwriter Mitchell Ferguson certainly has the troubadour look down. He's a Dallas native, you might have encountered him around town as both the former frontman of The Louisiana Purchase and as a solo act who has consistently logged close to 200 shows a year. Discerning eyes also may have noticed his auditions for The Voice a few years ago. Friday night, he'll take the comfortable stage of The Rustic, where his spooky blues tunes and creaky confessionals should sound right at home in the venue's dark, cozy environment. The free show starts at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 29, at The Rustic, 3656 Howell St. Jeff Strowe

Saturday, November 30

Pop singer Larry g(EE) will be performing a g(REAT) set this Saturday at a free show.
Pop singer Larry g(EE) will be performing a g(REAT) set this Saturday at a free show.
Will von Bolton

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Christmas Show
Need a Christmas activity for the whole family that’s light on crowds, ice princesses and jingle bells? The Very Hungry Caterpillar has munched his way all the way back to Dallas for a special show at the Dallas Children’s Theater, 5938 Skillman St., that’s sweet, timeless but just Christmas-y enough to keep things merry. Featuring four classic Eric Carle stories, including “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” “10 Little Rubber Ducks,” “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and the holiday-themed “Dream Snow,” the all-ages show is perfect for kids and parents who savor some sweet quiet time this festive season. Performances begin at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 30, running Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 29. Tickets are $15 to $40 at dct.org. Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Christmas Lights, Chocolate and Sips Tours 2019
One benefit of living in the Northern Hemisphere is that we at least have some ridiculously festive times to look forward to during the most miserable months of the year. The shorter winter days always seem longer and warmer as the nights begin to light up with cheery holiday lights. And sure, there’s the small matter of all the light pollution that scientists warn us about, but let it be some other generation’s problem. We can't think of a better reason to leave the coziness of our homes to go look at a bunch of rich homeowners’ wasteful displays of environmentally unfriendly lights than with the Christmas Lights, Chocolate and Sips Tours. The 3½-hour motorcoach tour, which takes holiday light enthusiasts through downtown Dallas and the Park Cities, makes stops at dessert venues and provides dessert samples, as well as hot chocolate and soft drinks (and is also BYOB). If none of that sounds appetizing, other dates pair the Christmas lights tour with tacos and margaritas, or with pizza and jazz. It starts at 5.30 p.m. at a location to be determined, and costs $47 for adults, $43 for children under 11. For more information, visit dallasbychocolate.com/christmas-tours.html. Eva Raggio

Larry g(EE)
Back in 2010, the Observer reported on the demise of Odis, a local pop-rock band that seemed to be somewhat of a cult favorite in town but didn’t quite live up to the potential they’d once shown. For the band’s frontman, Larry Gayao, aka Larry g(EE), the loss of one project simply became the compost he’d need to see his true dream grow into a reality. Eschewing the firm (but not quite hard) rock elements of his former group, g(EE) has made a full 90 degree turn into being the soul-funk singer he was truly born to be. His latest track, “Sleeping in my Car,” was recently showcased on Mark Schectman’s ALT 103.7 radio show Locals Only and will possibly be soon followed up on with a new EP tentatively titled First Love. If nothing else, g(EE) is a slice of nostalgia for fans of local music but with a whole new coat of paint to match these ever-changing times. The free show starts at 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30, at Twilite Lounge, 2640 Elm St. Nicholas Bostick

Dallas Ambient Music Nights XXXVI
Saturday night's 36th installment of Dallas Ambient Music Nights is not limited to the hyper-focused Dallas efforts of DAMN’s past. Instead, it's offering attendees of the monthly gathering of curated experimental forays into sound and vision a cool, remarkable lineup that’s a full-on Texas affair with noteworthy audio and visual performers from Austin, Houston and Dallas. Dallas’ own internationally renowned electro producer Gerard Hanson, Convextionaka E.R.P.  and Holodeck Records’ Dylan Cameron (from Austin) are headliners. Cameron is Holodeck’s longtime in-house producer and engineer, and his contribution to Austin's electronic and experimental scene is both highly regarded and far-reaching. Folks won’t want to miss the rare out-of-Houston performance and visual wizardry from Neil Ebblfo, or the now Austin-based James Washington (a former Dentonite) on the big screen at the Texas Theatre. DAMN XXXVI also includes other performances by Heavy Stars, Glymmur and Kalpa4.32, and other visuals by Evan Henry, Sean Miller, Kent Evans and Brian Tomerlin. The show starts at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30, at Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd. Tickets are $10 at prekindle.com. Daniel Rodrigue

A Hard Night's Day
Almost exactly 50 years to the day since the Beatles' iconic Abbey Road was released, Dallas' favorite Beatles tribute band, Hard Night's Day, plays a celebratory concert at the Granada Theater. Unless you're one of those who consider themselves too cool to like such a popular and quintessential band of 20th-century rock 'n' roll, you'll remember the album's hits like "Here Comes the Sun," "Something" and "Come Together." We may not be able to see the Beatles play live, but we can get close. Catch what is sure to be a nostalgic night of infectious music by John, Paul, George and Ringo, this Saturday night with one of the best acts around. It starts at 8 p.m. at Granada Theater, 3524 Greenville Ave. Tickets are $19-$29 at granadatheater.com. Diamond Rodrigue

Lorelei K will share the stage with the jazzy Polly Anna at Top Ten Records this Saturday.EXPAND
Lorelei K will share the stage with the jazzy Polly Anna at Top Ten Records this Saturday.
Armand Kohandani

Lorelei K
The artist/musician/poet mashup from Denton, Dahlia Knowles, who performs under the name Lorelei K, will take the stage at Top Ten Records in Dallas this Saturday. Knowles just put out her second full-length album, Lightbender, this October and is up for a Best Pop Act in the Dallas Observer Music Awards. The album is darker than her 2017 release Be the Doll. She told the Observer that Lightbender was a project that was two years in the making. But following her birthday, she finally stepped into the studio with the Denton sound engineer Michael Briggs to record her sophomore full-length, which is now up on streaming platforms for the world to hear. Lorelei K will share the stage with the San Antonio electronic jazz-pop act Polly Anna. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30, at Top Ten Records, 338 W. Jefferson Blvd. Tickets are $10 at the door. Jacob Vaughn

Vitruvian LightsEXPAND
Vitruvian Lights
Brian Maschino

Sunday, December 1

Vitruvian Lights
You have plenty of options when it comes to viewing holiday lights, but don't overlook Vitruvian Lights in Addison. First, it's not far from The Galleria and other North Dallas shopping locales. Second, it's not usually as crowded as some of the traffic-jammed suburban streets; and best of all, it looks a bit like something from a sci-fi Christmas future. The 19-acre park includes fountains and a pond and a collection of bright, solid-colored, lighted trees that's festive, modern and missing clichéd schmaltz. The park is lighted daily from 5 to 11 p.m. through Jan. 1, and it will offer music performances by Phat Strad on Dec. 7 and Sonny’s Holliday on Dec. 14. The park is south of Spring Valley Road, between Marsh and Midway roads. Visit udr.com/vitruvian-park. Patrick Williams

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