The term "stampede" will have a slightly different meaning on Thursday as the Unique Performance Shelby Continuation Facility, 13950 Senlac Drive in Farmers Branch, welcomes The Great American Pony Drive II, when a caravan of Mustangs traveling across the nation in celebration of the 40th anniversary of Ford's famous sports car comes to town. Discovery Channel will film the scene for its show Rides, and the event will also include a Mustang show, factory tours, prizes and an appearance by Gotham City Racing's Mike Ashley as he demonstrates the Shelby G.T.500E Pro Mod NDRA drag car that placed fourth at the 2004 NHRA Mac Tools Gatornationals. According to Unique Performance's president, Douglas Hasty (appropriate name for a quick carmaker), "The Ford Mustang is the most important car of our generation." So what better way to honor "the original 'ponycar'"? The arrival is expected at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free. See www.uniqueperformance.com.
Friday, April 23
Seriously, how cool was Roy Orbison? The man perfected wearing shades inside, had a healthy mop of jet black hair and crooned like no other, especially during "In Dreams." Blue Velvet would have been an entirely different movie without that song. Mercy! Glen Agritelley, the owner of Mercy wine bar (named after that exclamation in "Oh, Pretty Woman"), is an avid Orbison fan and is celebrating the birthday of the famed purrer on Friday from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. at his bar. The party will showcase the world's largest collection of Roy Orbison memorabilia, which is owned by Agritelley and includes the 1985 black Porsche owned by Orbison, nearly 100 original vinyl releases, two autographed Gibson 335 guitars and much more related to the man Elvis Presley referred to as "the greatest singer in the world." Orbison's former lead guitar player, Bucky Barrett, will perform at the celebration, entertaining revelers of Orbison amid videos and music. Mercy, located at 5100 Belt Line Road, will also be giving 200 pairs of Orbison signature glasses to partygoers. Call 972-702-9463.
Saturday, April 24
It won't hurt at all. Just turn it until you hear that click and everything goes black. Or, if you're all technologically advanced, just push on it until you hear that static-y noise and the darkness sets in. It can be a good thing. Just give in to it. Turn the dials and push the buttons. Give in to TV Turnoff Week. Local schools and libraries are celebrating the national event through Tuesday, but Saturday offers a special event at White Rock Lake's Flag Pole Hill, 8100 Duran Circle. Half Price Books is throwing prizes to participants, and outdoor festivities include hula hooping, storytelling and the clencher: one of the city's biggest kite shows. Let's hope those talking heads will get a little less play this weekend and people of all ages can head outside and promote action, literacy and television-free fun for kids. The 2 p.m. event is free. Call 214-824-3789.
Sunday, April 25
Given the bleak status of modern rock music, the option of time travel would be divine. One could hop into a portable, expandable chamber and hit a button to go back to choice performances of the past. Drop in on a Patsy Cline show, check out the Sex Pistols in their prime or happen upon Robert Johnson plucking his six-string. Since technology hasn't achieved the level of Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventures, the North Texas Singers are giving oldies lovers a break with Malt Shop Memories--A Musical Review. On Sunday at 3 p.m., the Singers pull out "Unchained Melody," "All I Have to Do is Dream," "Mr. Sandman" and more to transport our weary ears to a more languid and harmonious time. A silent auction benefiting the Grapevine Heritage Foundation precedes the show at 2 p.m. Grapevine's Palace Theatre is located at 308 S. Main St. Tickets are $8 to $12. Call 817-740-5742.
Monday, April 26
In all the old western flicks, cowboys eat beans warmed on the campfire from a tin can or hunker down to a slim steak and taters when served a home-cooked meal by a right fine li'l lady. Peter O'Brien, executive chef of Lajitas Resort, has a different idea of "cowboy cuisine," and he's dedicated a class to converting foodies to Rustic Elegance. Straight from his resort in West Texas, O'Brien demonstrates the preparations of Big Bend BBQ shrimp, smoked-chicken jicama slaw with pear cactus dressing, espresso-rubbed O-2 venison tenderloin with mole mashers and more posh cowpoke cuisine at Central Market, Lovers Lane at Greenville Avenue. Tuition is $55 per person. Call 214-361-5754.
Tuesday, April 27
True or false: Nothing is more balls-out, devil horns-throwing rock and roll than flowers. Rumor has it that it's true since Jeff Leatham, the floral designer for the Four Seasons Paris, Gwyneth Paltrow, Cher and others, is better known as Rock 'n' Roll Floral Designer. Seeing as how the designs we've seen contain no machine-generated fog, guitar strings, drumsticks or leather, we have no idea what this moniker could possibly mean. Sure, he is a former model, and that's fairly hip, but what makes this sculptor o' the flora so rocking? With eyeliner and leather cuff donned (those are the rock fashion necessities, yes?), we plan on finding out at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday as Leatham signs and discusses his book Flowers by Design at Barnes & Noble, 7700 W. Northwest Highway. Then we can all see in person if he's as innovative as Bowie, as fantastical as Dio or if he's a bit more adult contemporary...like, say, Diamond. Call 214-739-1124.
Wednesday, April 28
Lately we've discovered that we actually like ice cream. Usually we'd quickly shake our head in disapproval when offered the frozen treat, thinking it really unappealing. And maybe it's just the weather, but we have been scoping out the parlors. Pistachio, rocky road and even the soft-serve stuff seem increasingly appealing as our neighborhood becomes flooded with the sounds of whirring lawn mowers and tinkling treat trucks. Something about a tiny pink spoon moves us, and it kinda excites us to have to decide between sugar and waffle cones. Having determined this is not a side effect of any of our current medications, it must be a side effect of spring. The crafty Baskin-Robbins knows of this phenomenon and urges us to give in to the cream demon on Free Scoop Night from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The shops estimate 3 million free scoops on Wednesday as well as a hefty contribution from Baskin-Robbins to First Book, a nonprofit that gives new books to children from low-income families. So it's a win-win for parents and kids as well as, we hope, an end to our random desire to lick something. Check out www.baskinrobbins.com for store locations.