In Dallas, the end of September is dominated by one thing — the State Fair of Texas. But even though the goings-on at Fair Park lead the way as far as things to do this weekend, there are plenty other great chances for entertainment out there.
Below are the best options for your precious free time Thursday through Sunday. Don't like what you see? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, September 26
Fall Out Boy in concert with Panic! At the Disco and Twenty One Pilots
The early 2000s were full of emo bands like Fall Out Boy and Panic! At the Disco. The popularity of such bands has waned a bit in recent years, but Fall Out Boy is making a comeback with this tour and their grandly-named new album, Save Rock and Roll. The two bands will be joined by the relatively new duo Twenty One Pilots at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie.
Leon Redbone in concert with Logan Daffron
If you don't know the name of Leon Redbone, you most certainly are familiar with his work. In addition to his 15 albums, the singer/guitarist/Vaudevillian performer has provided the voice and/or music to multiple pop cultural artifacts, including the theme songs for Mr. Belvedere and Harry and the Hendersons, as well as several commercials. He'll play at The Kessler with Logan Daffron as opening act.
Friday, September 27
2013 State Fair of Texas
The annual fried food/pig-racing/butter sculpture/Midway ride extravaganza is back to dominate the landscape for the next three weeks. With this year's version comes a brand new Big Tex after his fiery demise in 2012, and the return of the Chinese Lantern Festival, which will run concurrently with the fair and then stay on through January 5, 2014. The fair itself lasts through October 20 at Fair Park, so go out and live it up with the thousands of other fair-goers.
Imagine Dragons in concert
There are few things more exciting in the world of entertainment than a band on the cusp of superstardom. That's exactly where Imagine Dragons is right now, as they've captured the imaginations of many thanks to the 2012 debut album and its inescapable hit, "Radioactive." They'll play at South Side Ballroom on both Friday and Saturday night, but enjoy the small venue while you can; next time they come to town, they'll probably be in the big time.
Saturday, September 28
Gilt City Warehouse Sale
Anyone who loves the deals they can get on fashion and spa treatments online at Gilt City will love this live and in-person event at Dallas Contemporary, where you can peruse clothes from a variety of different stores. The event will also feature custom Infiniti Q50s available for test drives and mini spa treatments to keep your stamina up throughout the day.
Aimee Mann in concert with Ted Leo
Aimee Mann has one of those distinctive voices that always makes you want to come back for more. That and more explains why she's had such a long and distinctive career, first as lead singer for the '80s band 'Til Tuesday and later as a solo artist. She comes to the Granada Theater in support of her eighth solo album, Charmer, with Ted Leo as opening act.
2013 Dallas Symphony Orchestra AT&T Gala featuring Renee Fleming
To celebrate the opening of the 2013-2014 Dallas Symphony Orchestra season, which kicks off with a concert titled Mahler 4, the DSO will hold will this gala event featuring renowned soprano Renee Fleming. The gala at Meyerson Symphony Center includes a pre-show dinner, the concert with Fleming and an after-party featuring DJ Lucy Wrubel.
Sunday, September 29
Breaking Bad Series Finale Watching Party
Any fan of Breaking Bad knows that you'll likely need a few hugs after the classic series comes to an end on Sunday, so what better place to watch than in the company of few hundred other people at the Granada Theater? And after Walter White meets his likely demise, you can also drown your sorrows next door at Sundown at Granada.
Lewis Black: The Rant is Due!
Lewis Black has made a career out of being an angry comedian, a shtick he's worked to perfection in a recurring spot on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart called "Back in Black." Given that a recent appearance had him taking dead aim at Texas, and Governor Rick Perry in particular, you can expect this appearance at Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth to have him more riled up than usual.