Things To Do

Best Things To Do in Dallas This Weekend

See Florence + The Machine this weekend.
See Florence + The Machine this weekend. David Le


“Our state fair is a great state fair; don’t miss it, don’t even be late.” While that incredible show tune wasn’t technically sung about the State Fair of Texas, we know it could be applied to us. Sept. 28 marks the beginning of the State Fair of Texas and you're simply not a Texan if you don't partake in at least one afternoon of fried food, carnival rides and a selfie in front of Big Tex. Each weekend, there is a free concert, and this year’s lineup includes Ludacris, Hunter Hayes and more. The State Fair is at Fair Park, 1121 1st Ave., and it runs through Oct. 21. Visit for more information. Paige Skinner

Former Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry is coming to town to promote his memoir, Every Day is Extra, about his life in politics. The book is his personal story in which he explores serving in the Vietnam War, working as a senator and then becoming the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee. You’ll get a chance to hear him speak at noon, Sept. 28 at Belo Mansion & Pavilion, 2101 Ross Ave. Tickets start at $75 and are $125 for a photo opportunity. For more information, visit Paige Skinner

Good magic is hard to come by. Either the jokes are too cheesy or the illusion is too noticeable. But at Trigg Watson’s Wine and Magic show at Checkered Past Winery, 1409 S. Lamar St. Ste. 008, the humor and magic are impeccable. One minute you’re watching an iPad turn into a mirror and the next, an Amazon package of an audience member’s choice is getting delivered within seconds. We’re not sure how Watson does it, but he does it well. See him 7 p.m. Sept. 28. Tickets are $20. For more information, visit Paige Skinner

Lord Huron hits the sweet spot between country and indie rock — think Fleet Foxes-style melodies and songwriting with Southern-tinged vocals. The LA-based foursome debuted in 2012 with the album Lonesome Dreams, followed by 2015's Strange Tails. The band is now touring in support of April's release of Vide Noir. 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 28, at The Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., $35.50. Diamond Victoria


Here in North Texas, we celebrate cottonwoods with arts festivals and live oaks with titular, wide boulevards. But the crape myrtle, a majestic Southern mainstay that’s full of color, just doesn’t get its due 'round these parts. However, McKinney, which deems itself “America’s Crape Myrtle City,” is here to put the delightful Asian import in the spotlight during the 2018 Crape Myrtle Run and Festival on Saturday, Sept. 29 beginning at 7 a.m. Gather in the north parking lot of McKinney Boyd High School, 600 North Lake Forest Drive, for your choice of 5K run/walk; 10K run/walk; or a 1-mile jaunt through the Crape Myrtle Trails of McKinney, followed by a fun family festival and petting zoo. Register now for this lush run celebrating the beloved Lagerstroemia; online sign-up is available for between $15 and $40 at Jennifer Davis-Lamm

Sure, sure, that 60-inch TV is just not cutting it anymore when it’s time for college football every Saturday. There are yards to stalk and plays to obsess over and coach’s lips to read and so many sideline expressions to decipher. But it’s fine, because Texas Live, 1650 E. Randol Mill Road in Arlington, has a 100-foot LED HD screen primed and ready to rock every Saturday at 11 a.m. for its College Game Day Watch Party. The Texas A&M Aggies will want to suit up in maroon and show up for the game against the Arkansas Razorbacks on Sept. 29 (it is Texas Live, after all), but fans of other schools can check out other, smaller screens throughout the venue for other rivalries. Buckets of Coors Light and Miller Lite are $30 and table reservations can be made by emailing [email protected] before the day of the event. Free parking is available on non-stadium event days. Visit Merritt Martin

For a little over a decade now, Florence Welch has belted out grandly orchestral tunes as the frontwoman for Florence + The Machine. The Welsh singer's powerful voice serves as the signature component of the band's lushly arranged pieces, making the intimate confessionals often contained in the songwriting epic and thunderous in their presentations. While the lyrical content is akin to things you may overhear in a hushed coffeehouse, Welch's voice and her band's sound ensure that folks within earshot of whatever venue they're playing in, will be able to bob along with the music. This summer and fall find Welch + The Machine touring behind their latest album High as Hope, a collection of songs that finds the band members dialing things back a bit, with a more minimalist production and an even deeper dive into self-introspection within Welch's songwriting. As a cool bonus this Saturday, jazz maestro Kamasi Washington, who also played on High as Hope, serves as the opening act. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29 at The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, 300 W. Colinas Blvd., Irving, $39 and up at Jeff Strowe


Stonebriar Country Club is here to save the day. You like watching the football game. Your kids do not because they don’t understand why the big boys on TV get to tackle one another, but they can’t tackle their little sister. Stonebriar Country Club has the perfect solution and it’s called Sunday Family Fun Day. At noon, Sept. 30, you and your family can head out to Stonebriar Country Club, 5050 Country Club Dr., Frisco, where your kids can enjoy a bounce house, some face painting, games and food, while you watch the Dallas Cowboys vs. Detroit Lions game on TV. Everyone wins and best of all, it’s free. For more information, head to Paige Skinner

It’s hard to believe it’s already been two decades since the release of The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, a record that quite simply rerouted the course of hip-hop forever. A nexus of gospel, reggae, rap, soul and R&B, Ms. Hill’s lone LP struck a singularly plangent chord amid the braggadocio and gold of mid- to late-‘90s hip-hop. Ms. Hill’s bars and bravura here made evident she was not only one of the best MCs of her era, but of all time. Miseducation’s trenchant narratives, girded with warm bass and boom-bap beats replete with Caribbean colors, speak on the strength and perseverance required of women of color — and what a beautiful and sad reality that can be. Seeing Ms. Lauryn Hill live is a bucket-list item of every die-hard rap head; seeing her tour in celebration of her magnum opus and easily one of the finest artifacts in hip-hop history is the chance of a lifetime. Shabazz Palaces’ celestial future-rap is only the cherry on top. With Shabazz Palaces, 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 30 at The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, 316 W. Las Colinas Blvd., Irving, tickets start at $22 at Jonathan Patrick
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Paige Skinner has written for the Dallas Observer since 2014.
Contact: Paige Skinner