Presidential campaigns require a lot of energy. The candidates need energy to go out and promote themselves; the public needs it to deal with the onslaught of media telling them who to love and who to hate. It seems like with every campaign, mudslinging increases and the tactic moves from connecting with the people to simply undermining the other guy. Maybe we're naíve, but it seems that 40 years ago, it wasn't so bad--things were still about goodness, prosperity and shaking hands. Wait, who are we kidding? Politics have always been shady, right? We can see for ourselves what the John F. Kennedy presidential campaign of 1960 was like when the curator of The Sixth Floor Museum, Gary Mack, offers a lunchtime program at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, featuring "rarely seen films and sound recordings" of the senator kissing babies and generally dazzling the crowds. The program is free with museum admission ($9 to $10), and the museum is located at Dealey Plaza. Call 214-747-6660.
Friday, August 27
Labels have become too important. People actually pay for Prada tags to be put on knock-offs and tear out tags of budget-conscious lines. The 5 x 7 Dallas Art Splurge & Exhibition says, "Shame on that," and we're right there with them. The sale Friday, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.), features art measuring 5 inches by 7 inches. And the coolest thing is that it's all anonymous. Prospective buyers can see the art, not the signature of the artist, and judge it wholly on its personal appeal, not future value or popularity. All pieces are $100, and the artist of each piece is revealed when it is purchased. Not only is it an innovative idea, but all proceeds benefit Arthouse, an organization that encourages and aids the growth of contemporary Texas art and artists. The anonymous creations are displayed at Dunn and Brown Contemporary, 5020 Tracy St. Call 214-521-4322.
Saturday, August 28
On November 18, 2003, 75 statues of Mickey Mouse were unveiled at the Walt Disney World Resort. The event celebrated the 75th anniversary of Mickey Mouse, and the statues were designed or inspired by actors, athletes, artists and Disney legends. The 75 700-pound, 6-foot-tall Mickeys are touring the country in groups of 15 in a continuing celebration of the 75 years the mouse has made memories. The statues will come together again in 2005 before being auctioned at Sotheby's to raise money for the artists' individual charities. And yes, the Celebrate Mickey: 75 InspEARations tour stops in on Saturday. Through October 30, Mickeys designed by Ben Affleck, Black Entertainment Television, Jamie Lee Curtis, Annette Funicello, Shaq, Andy Garcia and others are on display at the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center, 1501 Gaylord Trail, Grapevine. Admission is free; parking is $7. Call 817-778-1000.
Sunday, August 29
As we pack to move yet again, we come across heirlooms collected from grandparents, long-lost relatives and flea markets. They mean so much to us, which is an odd feeling because, well, they're just things, after all. But the question we keep asking ourselves is: If a certain object didn't have our memories tied to it, would it be worth anything at all to someone else? For $25 in advance or $30 at the door of the Old Is Gold Appraisal Fair, patrons can find out the monetary value of decorative items, silver, clocks, Oriental rugs, paintings, collectibles and more (limit two items per person; tickets for additional items are $10). Or, for a mere $5, just watch the whole thing like a live Antiques Roadshow. We just wonder if any of our stuff is even worth the cost of admission. Appraisals are conducted from noon to 5 p.m. in the Zale Auditorium of the Jewish Community Center, 7900 Northaven Road. For reservations, call 214-739-2737 or register online at www.jccdallas.org.
Monday, August 30
A friend once said, as we questioned the merit of "Weird Al" Yankovic, "Dude, white kids in the suburbs listen to Weird Al more than Jesus." We never realized how right he was--what a god the polka 'n' parody man is--until we found that Yankovic has earned 25 gold and platinum records during his nearly 25-year career of unabashedly making fun of Top 40 hits. We remember, of course, "Eat It" and "Fat" (circa 1984 and 1988, respectively) but were unaware the curly-headed musician still had such a following. Monday gives us the opportunity to identify and define the true Weird Al fans as Yankovic plays Bass Performance Hall at 7:30 p.m. If the tracks on his latest Grammy-winning album Poodle Hat are a tell, he'll rip up songs by Avril Lavigne, Backstreet Boys and even piano man Billy Joel without apology. We can totally respect that. The hall is located at 525 Commerce St. in Fort Worth. Call 1-877-212-4280.
Tuesday, August 31
As nerve-wracking as it is to get on the flying petri dishes that are today's commercial airplanes, aircraft themselves are still amazing. The collection of aviation equipment, planes and associated memorabilia at the Frontiers of Flight Museum was already intriguing, having brought kids and history buffs like our World War II veteran grandfather together to "ooh" and "aah." Now the museum welcomes the addition of five new aircraft, upping the allure and gape-time of the already popular destination. Visitors can now see up-close the "MiG Killer" of the Korean War, the Air Force's "Fighting Falcon" and "White Rocket," the Piper PA-18 "Super Cub" of 1949 and the "Staggerwing" of the 1930s. The museum, at 8008 Cedar Springs Road, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays. Admission is $5 to $8. Call 214-350-3600.
Wednesday, September 1
In preschool and early elementary grades, collage was the art of the "everychild." One didn't need special skills or drawing ability to produce a pleasing collage, or at least one that would get a big, fat, red "A" on the upper right corner. At that age, no one realizes they could actually grow up and be a serious artist using the medium of collage. Granted, Dean Corbitt uses photography, paint and printed paper, and kindergartners usually use construction paper and the occasional leaf, but the point is the direction in which Corbitt took the art form. The Mesquite Arts Center, 1527 N. Galloway Ave., hosts Grids & Probabilities of Chance, an exhibition of Corbitt's work, presented by the Mesquite Arts Council. Corbitt describes his show as "controlled chaos within a structured environment, two things living in the same place at the same time and patterns interlaced in global cultures." Imagine the look on teach's face if a 6-year-old ever said that. The exhibit opens Wednesday and will remain on view daily through September 30. Call 972-216-8122.