Kickin' it Lowbrow and Low-Key at FOE

Where: Fraternal Order of Eagles, 8500 Arturo Drive When: 5-7 p.m. Monday through Friday, What: $2.50-$4 liquor, $2.25-$3 beer Why: Because we like helping handicapped kids. And if that involves knocking back a few beers after work, consider us dedicated philanthropists. A fully nonprofit organization, FOE has funded medical research, supported local fire and police and pumped money into communities for more than 100 years.

Tucked away behind a quiet neighborhood, for a long while it was a word-of-mouth kind of place with a bit of the hidden-gem quality, though it's turned into a major draw in the last few years, especially when the summer heat starts to peak. Inside, portraits of chapter presidents through the years watch over the bar, where during happy hour, every liquor in the house is $2.50 to $4, and beers run $2.25 to $3.00 from 5 p.m. to 7 pm.

The main attractions are outside, where an Olympic-size pool and sand volleyball courts bring summer fun and booze together in one wonderful place. Here you won't find the social elite hanging out. It's more down and dirty than prim and proper, where cheap wood paneling and tacky furniture conjure that small town charm, hard to find in the big city.

Happy hours slow it down a bit, most often featuring the usual suspects, the same few older folks whiling away their afternoons with a beer in one hand and a cigarette burning in the other. The bartenders greet new faces with a smile, but until you've earned a little rapport, it's obvious who the regulars are and who's just passing through. One of the quieter spots to get a few drinks on the cheap, if you want the breeze through the trees and the pool to yourself, it's worth the trip for a break from the Dallas grind.

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Jareb Parker