The beginning of a new year usually means a slight hangover in the events department. This somewhat slower weekend will feature the final days of various holiday events, a country singer whose success has been two decades in the making, a singer who wowed on a recent reality competition show, and a discussion of the biggest movie of 2017.
Below are the best ways to spend your free time this weekend. Want more options? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, January 4
Last call for holiday events
The holiday season may officially be over, but you still have a few more days to check out some of its fun events. Holiday at the Arboretum at Dallas Arboretum, The Trains at NorthPark, Magical Winter Lights at Lone Star Park, and Holiday Wonder at Fair Park will all be open through Sunday, offering a last chance to see great lights and other displays.
Friday, January 5
Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit in concert with James McMurty
Country singer Jason Isbell is an old-school musician in that he's taken the long road to success. He's been paying his dues for the past 17 years, slowly but surely building a fan base. Each of his albums has landed farther up the Billboard Country charts, culminating with has latest, 2017's The Nashville Sound, at No. 4. He and his band, The 400 Unit, will play at the Bomb Factory alongside opening act James McMurtry.
Saturday, January 6
Cry Havoc Theater Company presents A History of Everything
If you were to write your own history of everything, what would you include? The election of Barack Obama or the 2016 rise of the alt-right? The discovery of penicillin or the detonation of the first atomic bomb? In A History of Everything, playing at Margo Jones Theatre at Magnolia Lounge through January 13, the teens of Cry Havoc tell the story of humanity as they see it, highlighting the cyclical nature of the world and the ongoing human struggle to find meaning in life.
Eisemann Center presents An Evening with Mandy Harvey
Mandy Harvey is an award-winning singer, songwriter and motivational speaker who appeared on the 2017 edition of America's Got Talent, finishing in the top five. Despite losing her hearing at age 18, she has forged ahead with her musical career, relying on perfect timing and pitch. She'll perform a one-night-only show at Eisemann Center for the Performing Arts in Richardson.
Sunday, January 7
Nerd Fight Strikes Back - A Star Wars Panel Discussion
Star Wars: The Last Jedi was the biggest movie of 2017, having made over $550 million in just three weeks. But it's also been criticized heavily by a segment of hardcore fans who suggested that writer/director Rian Johnson has betrayed some of the series' biggest beliefs. This panel discussion at Texas Theatre will feature a variety of Star Wars experts breaking down the film and its place in the Star Wars canon. The Last Jedi will screen both before and after the discussion for anyone who wants to see it again or for the first time.