Best Podcast 2018 | The Miseducation of Dallas County | Best of Dallas® 2020 | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Dallas | Dallas Observer

Dallas has a tendency of re-inventing itself, and in the process, we forget what this city's people have endured. This podcast is a nagging reminder of Dallas' origins. Criss-crossing through Dallas ISD's struggle to integrate the schools to county officials' fear of taxes, the podcast dives into how people have been educated over the years in Dallas. It takes hard looks at the schools, providing historical commentaries on subjects that are relevant at school board meetings today. This podcast really shows the dangers of public officials misleading parents and students.

James Franco would have never made The Disaster Artist if theaters like the Inwood didn't keep alive cult sensation The Room. Every Friday and Saturday at midnight, the theater shows other cult classics, including "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" and "Donnie Darko." (Check the website for the schedule.) The Inwood screens the latest movies too, so you can catch those as well. Enjoy any of the films in the Inwood's living room-style auditorium, featuring couch seats. It's perfect for dates. There is also a martini lounge; $5 during happy hour. The theater has been around for over 70 years. It's a Dallas staple serving up the classics.

courtesy Ink Master
Deanna Smith

Denton's Deanna Smith has only been a tattoo artist for about four years, but she was one of the top five contestants out of 30 on the latest season of the Paramount Network's Ink Master. Smith, who works at Dark Age Tattoo Studio in Denton's Downtown Square, specializes in portrait tattoos, so it was a disappointment when she was eliminated during a portrait competition with only two episodes remaining. "I don't fully agree that what makes a tattoo perfect is how straight the line work is or how solid the saturation is," Smith told the Dallas Observer after she left the show. "I think it's about when you see a tattoo, does it look dope? If the answer is yes, then it's a good tattoo."

Ah, the smell of fresh crayon wax. There was nothing like opening a new big box of Crayolas, 64 colors untouched by some other kid's grubby little fingers. Enjoy some old-fashioned fun with your children at the Crayola Experience, which opened in March at the Shops at Willow Bend in Plano. Watch how crayons are made, stop at a coloring station that would put your 64-count box to shame, paint with watercolors or melted wax, explore the playground or visit the photo booth to create a coloring page of your family. Don't forget to tell your kids that you didn't get to do any of these activities back in the day.

Your favorite music, food trucks and flowers. Do you need to know anything more about KXT Sun Sets? Before the weather gets unbearably hot (OK, technically this is a late spring concert series), the signature series from KXT 91.7 FM lets you hear national and local musicians chosen by the radio station's staff members in an intimate setting at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Guests can bring food and drinks to set up picnics on the Camp Lawn overlooking White Rock Lake. Artists for 2018 included Patty Griffin and Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear.

Sure, you can check out the Perot Museum of Nature and Science during its regular hours, but it's just not socially acceptable to push kids out of the way so you can try the interactive exhibits. That's probably why the museum offers plenty of adult-only programs, or as its website calls them, "scientifically grown-up fun." Social Science events have fun themes and include experiments, performances, discussions and, of course, drinks. Hear from engaging explorers during a lecture from the speaker series National Geographic Live. Or check out Science Cafe at a local pub, where you can hear about scientific trends and research from experts and, of course, drink.

If you ever hear someone say nobody cares about art in Deep Ellum, this is where to send them. Since 2005, Kettle Art Gallery has been a springboard for up-and-coming artists in Dallas. In a city rife with stuffy, see-and-be-seen galleries, owner Frank Campagna (aka the "Godfather of Deep Ellum") and a dedicated band of volunteers are the DNA of this little gallery that could. His tireless dedication to the wellbeing of Dallas' underrepresented artists has been on clear display since the day he opened his Main Street doors. Their annual event For the Love of Kettle sees lines literally around the block of people clamoring to snag inspired works of art.

The Craft Guild's motto is learn, create, be inspired, and for the last 70 years, that's exactly what the Carrollton-based nonprofit has offered artisans in the Dallas area. If jewelry-making is your thing, the Guild's all-levels beading class is going to be your new happy place. Offered at various times throughout the year, the classes are interactive and include how-to demos, pro tips and techniques for beginning beaders as well as those who've mastered the art. From peyote to brick stitch, to weaving, loom work and all the latest methods and designs, there's no need to enroll in a fancy design school to be the next great jewelry designer. The Craft Guild's got you covered at a fraction of the cost.

If you've ever wondered if DIY pottery-making is as fun as it looks, it is. But don't take our word for it. Plan your next date, girls night out, kids party, or "me time" at Quigley's Clay House in Richardson. With an array of activities like pottery painting, glass fusion, adult wheel night and canvas night, to name a few, there's no risk of not having an amazing time. Warning: Throwing clay at Quigley's can be addictive. Govern yourself accordingly.

Dallas' rich history is part of what makes the city all that it is, with a culture fueled by business, sports, entertainment and diversity. A visit to Dallas means you better buckle up, because it's impossible to distill it all in one or two experiences. If you must, however, then we suggest starting with one of the few things that brings everyone together: food. In Dallas, Tex-Mex is where it's at. Options are abundant here, and they're arguably among the best in the world. Dallas' Taco and Margarita Tour will take you on a food-and-drink-sampling adventure. You'll hit many of the best Tex-Mex spots in a four-hour stretch that includes a motorcoach ride, food and drinks. You'll also get to indulge in what Bon Appétit magazine has named the "Best Taco in America." Be sure to plan in advance. No surprise, this tour sells out regularly. It's put together by Dallas Bites!, 972-814-5997.

Best Of Dallas®

Best Of