Western Days Festival
Downtown Lewisville, 150 W Church St, LewisvilleWesternDays.com,
On Fri-Sat, Sep 22-23, Lewisville’s annual Western Days Festival will take place in the heart of the historic old town area. The festivities include children’s activities, a car show, cooking demonstrations, live music, vendors, and more. On Fri, the festival is open 5pm-11:30pm with everyone’s favorite local-gone-national alt-country band Old 97’s playing the main stage at 10pm. Then on Sat, come out from 10am to 11:30pm and watch Dwight Yoakam do his thing at 10pm. The best part? This event is free if you arrive before 7pm each day. To err on the safe side, you can buy advance tickets for $15 at LewisvilleWesternDays.com.
Oktoberfest Fort Worth
Panther Island Pavilion, 395 Purcey St, OktoberFestFW.com, 817-699-0700
There’s no need to head to Germany this season, as Fort Worth is having Oktoberfest right in our own backyard. On Thu-Sat, Sep 23-25, head to Panther Island Pavilion for authentic German food, biergartens, dancing, games, music, and shopping. The Dachshund Dash alone is worth the price of admission. Tickets are $5-15 at OktoberFestFW.com, and kids under 12 are free with a paying adult.
State Fair of Texas
Fair Park Dallas, 3921 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, BigTex.com, 214-565-9931
After a year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the State Fair of Texas is back. In the words of Big Tex himself, this year’s theme is a resounding, “Howdy, Folks!” The commemorative theme art represents a diverse variety of folks enjoying all things Texan, found on the fairgrounds. From Fri, Sep 24, thru Sun, Oct 17, check out the new (fried) foods and the (shiny) new trucks and a who’s-who of artists playing for free at the Chevrolet Main Stage every weekend of the 24-day event, including the Black Pumas, Dru Hill, La Energia Nortena, and Clay Walker during opening weekend. Admission tickets are $10-24 at BigTex.com.
Ramblin’ Roads Music Festival
Downtown Arlington, various venues, RamblinRoadsFest.com, 817-303-2800
The first weekend of October, travel the roads to discover Downtown Arlington at the Ramblin’ Roads Music Festival. This unique event Fri-Sun, Oct 1-3, features blues, country, gospel, jazz, rock, and more over three days at 18 venues, including Arlington Music Hall (224 N Center St, 817-226-4400), Levitt Pavilion (100 W Abram St, 817-543-4308), and Texas Live (1650 E Randol Mill Rd, 817-852-6688). Big Ass Brass Band, Chromeo, Dan Cavanaugh Quartet, William Clark Green, Grupo Control, April Hutchins, Jamestown Revival, Tatiana Ladymay, La Sonora Dinamita, Shaker Hymns, Bobby Pulido, Mike Ryan, Monica Salvidar, Jesse Stration, Gene Watson, and Wynn Williams are a few of the big-name acts tapped to headline the shows. Tickets are $45-250 at RamblinRoadsFest.com.
Screams Halloween Park
Scarborough Fairground, I-35 at FM 66, Waxahachie, ScreamsPark.com, 972-938-3247
For a totally immersive Halloween experience, head to Screams. Located on the grounds of Scarborough Renaissance Festival, each of the five haunted houses has a different theme, including two new ones this season — Klownz in 3D and Times Up Maze. There’s also a haunted cemetery, games of skill, and live entertainment throughout the park. Plus, you can drink beer and sing Scary-Oke at the pub. Screams is open 7:30pm-1am every Fri-Sat from Oct 1 thru 30. Tickets are $42 at ScreamsPark.com.
Bell Fort Worth Alliance Air Show
Alliance Airport, 2221 Alliance Blvd, AllianceAirShow.com, 817-890-1000
The Bell Fort Worth Alliance Air Show is one of the largest, longest-running, and most successful civilian air shows in the nation — voted No. 1 by USA Today readers, in fact. This year’s BFWAA show takes flight on Fri-Sun, Oct 22-24, and includes a beer garden, exhibitors, food concessions, flight simulators, kids’ activities, and more in the all-new Landing Zone. (Note: While the event is 11am-4pm each day, arrivals to the parking lot area are only permitted from 10am to 1pm.) With a theme of Flight & Freedom, the featured performers will be the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, plus an all-veteran parachute team, the Air National Guard Band of the Southwest, and more. Ticket pricing at AllianceAirShow.com is complicated — from $0 to $1,000 plus parking — but well worth the research.
OTEP & Texas Hippie Coalition
Rail Club Live, 3101 Joyce Dr, RailClubLive.com, 817-386-4309
From protecting other businesses from the COVID-19 virus through his Masters of Disasters decontamination outfit to delivering Easter eggs to local families as part of his Stand for Something efforts/mindset, Chris Palone has had a busy pandemic. Besides doing good and fighting the tyranny of the TABC, the governor’s office, and our (former) mayor, Palone still manages to find the time to book some stellar shows at his beloved Rail Club Live. Two upcoming events that have our attention are national act OTEP on Sat, Oct 23, and regional darlings Texas Hippie Coalition on Fri, Oct 29. (Chris, while OTEP is in town, please order take-out for her from the Best Vegan and Best Vegetarian winners in this issue’s Good Grub section. You can thank us later.)
Four Day Weekend Improv Shows
Sundance Square, 312 Houston St, Ste 7404, FourDayWeekend.com, 817-226-4329
Did you know that Four Day Weekend — the critically acclaimed comedy troupe — is the longest-running show in the Southwest? For the past 25 years, just like the Weekly, they’ve homed in on being the best. Every Fri-Sat at 7:30pm and 10pm, the group performs an hour-45-minute comedy shows based solely on audience suggestions and participation. (Now that’s what I call improv!) While the troupe does have its own 212-seat theater space in Sundance Square, they are glad to bring the party to your venue of choice. Along with scheduling their roster of comedians to emcee your corporate events, awards banquets, and such, Four Day Weekend will also make team-building fun for you corporate types. Tickets to the weekly improv shows are $25 at FourDayWeekend.com.