Free Weekend Fun in Houston June 26-28

Get ready for a weekend of free fun! Here is a snapshot of 14 Free Things to Do in Houston this weekend, June 26-28:

downtown houston

FRIDAY

Enjoy classical music – The Houston Symphony’s ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights continues Friday and Saturday nights, June 26-27, 8:30 pm. Check online for the performance schedule. Free tickets for covered seats are available at Miller Box Office on performance day, 10:30 am – 1 pm. Miller Outdoor Theatre is located at 6000 Hermann Park Drive.

Watch a movie under the moon — Don’t miss all the options for free outdoor movies this weekend. Two are Friday — 1) Chef at Whole Foods Market,  8 pm, Waugh and 2) Despicable Me 2 at GreenStreet, 9 pm, 1201 Fannin.

Love live musicHeat Advisory is on stage Friday for free live music at Willowfork Drainage District’s Central Green Park in Katy. The fun is 7 pm – 9 pm at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

Enjoy summer tunes in Pearland — Folks south of Houston can hit Summerfest, Pearland’s free weekly concert, 7 pm at Southdown Park, 2150 Countryplace Parkway. This week features Rat Ranch playing rock. This is the last week!

Learn to salsa dance — Enjoy free salsa dance lessons at Latin Beats every Friday night at Downtown Aquarium. Learn salsa dancing from professional dance instructors from 7 pm – 11 pm. The Aquarium is located at 410 Bagby at Memorial.

SATURDAY

Free yoga in the park — Enjoy a new summer series, Savasana into Summer, Saturdays at Hermann Park, thanks to Namitzi Yoga. The free weekly yoga class outdoors is open to all skill levels through September 1. Meditation is 8:15 am – 8:25 am with yoga from 8:30 am – 9:30 am. This is located near the Reflection Pond at Hermann Park.

basspro family campPlay at summer campFamily Summer Camp at Bass Pro Shops begins Saturday with free activities for kids Saturdays and Sundays (& Tuesday/Thursday) plus family workshops and more. Family Summer Camp lasts from noon to 5 pm through July 27. Engage in activities such as casting challenge, BB shooting range, weekly crafts, shooting arcade, free workshops, catch and release pond. Bass Pro Shops has two Houston-area locations in Katy (5000 Katy Mills Circle) and Pearland (1000 Basspro Drive).

Celebrate 35 years of Jazzercise — This weekend Bear Creek Copperfield Center Jazzercise celebrates 35 years! This franchise location has been ranked #1 out of 8,700 franchisees worldwide for the past 15 years. Saturday festivities include a Latin class, Burlesque class, Interval Fusion, Personal Touch (Jazzercise Personal Training), classic Dance Mixx – honoring amazing anniversaries, Stretch, Hip Hop class, prizes and more!  Located at 15544 Ridge Park.

Love a parade — The LGBT Pride Festival Celebration is Saturday, noon – 7 pm, featuring a variety of festival performances and exhibits. The Pride Parade kicks off at 8:30 pm at Milam at Walker heading to Smith with more than 100 floats. The festival is located downtown this year at Tranquility Park near City Hall as its new venue. Snag a free sample from Ben & Jerry’s Texas Truck Tour and vote for its new iconic Texas flavor: BBQ Peach or Bourbon Pecan Pie.

Enjoy classical music – The Houston Symphony’s ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights continues Saturday night, 8:30 pm. Free tickets for covered seats are available at the Miller Box Office on performance day, 10:30 am – 1 pm. Miller Outdoor Theatre is located at 6000 Hermann Park Drive.

Get in the NOLA spirit — Don’t miss Rouxpour at NOLA Nights, Saturday, 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm, at Sugar Land Town Square. The music follows an historical journey through the Crescent City brass band tradition.

Watch a movie under the moon — Don’t miss all the options for free outdoor movies this weekend. Two are Saturday: 1) Heavy Weights at Central Green Park, 2) Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible No Good Very Bad Day at Pearland Town Square.

Love outdoor music and fireworks — Folks in north Houston can enjoy Waterway Nights each Saturday in June with live music, strolling entertainers, and fireworks over The Woodlands!  Fireworks begin at approximately 9:20 pm. Located at Waterway Square in The Woodlands.

SUNDAY

Celebrate family — Create family memories and family fun at Heritage Family Day Sunday, 1 pm – 4 pm, thanks to special programming offered by The Heritage Society. The free fun features children’s crafts, outdoor games for all, and information about family history research, thanks to folks from Clayton Genealogical Center. Kids will be able to complete a simple family tree documenting three generations. Located at 1100 Bagby. 

Enjoy the flash of BollywoodKarma: The Wheel of Life is a rescheduled event held Sunday, 8:30 pm, at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  This colorful Bollywood show is produced by India House and Naach Houston. Tickets for reserved covered seats from the original May 30 date will not be accepted. New tickets will be available performance day at the Miller Box office, 10:30 am – 1 pm. Or just bring your blanket and snacks for seating on the hillside.

Free Frozen Treats at Frost Bank this Summer

snowconeEnjoy free frozen treats this summer, thanks to Frost Bank locations throughout Houston. Here is the schedule:

Westchase Financial Center
3304 W. Sam Houston Parkway S (77042)

June 26: 1 pm – 3 pm {Smoosh}
July 31: 1 pm – 3 pm {Kona Ice}
August 21: 1 pm – 3 pm {Sweetride!}

Harrisburg Financial Center
1001 Broadway (77012)

June 27: 12 pm – 2 pm {Berry Ices}
July 25: 12 pm – 2 pm {Kona Ice}
August 22: 12 pm – 2 pm {Smoosh}

Northgate Financial Center
2715 FM 1960 W (77068)

July 3: 2 pm – 5 pm {Kona Ice}
August 7: 2 pm – 5 pm {Berry Ices}

Curious what these local frozen food trucks are all about?

  • Smoosh serves one-of-a kind ice cream cookie sandwiches.
  • Berry Ices offers visitors a non-dairy option.
  • Kona Ice offers a create-your-own snow cone experience with a rainbow of options. Houston’s gourmet ice cream truck, SweetRide!, offers homemade ice cream and snow cones.

Frost Bank has 29 Houston-area locations and has been serving Texans since 1868.

photo: flickr/SeanLoyless

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12 Fun Outdoor Activities in Houston

Buffalo Bayou bike trailHouston has no shortage of green space! In fact, it has the most park space of the 10 largest U.S. cities. Head over to read my latest article, 12 Fun Outdoor Activities in Houston, on CubeSmart’s site for places to enjoy by water, by foot, and by bike. I look forward to sharing new Houston-related articles there each month!

I am proud to be CubeSmart’s City Guide Expert for its online Houston Moving Guide. I will be sharing monthly insight for folks moving to Houston looking for local perspective.

CubeSmart city guide

 

 

 

 

photo: Buffalo Bayou Partnership

Disclosure: I’ve partnered with CubeSmart as their local expert. Articles are written by me and my own opinion.

Date Night on the Cheap: Peel Me a Grape

Date Night on the Cheap shares inexpensive outings in Houston that will impress your date without breaking the bank, thanks to our partnership with Trip Chandler. Their service creates customized guides to Houston for visitors and residents.

“What wine goes with Captain Crunch?” — George Carlin

Taste Some Wine

Houston has many wine tastings to expand your food pairings beyond the cereal aisle.

French Country Wines

French Country Wines hosts wine tastings Wednesday evenings, 5 pm – 7 pm, and Saturdays, noon - 6 pm, in its shop near Rice Village. The owners, Phyllis & Tim, are usually present if they aren’t scouting new selections in France. With summer’s arrival, an affordable bottle of rose is a good choice for spending the rest of your date al fresco in the backyard while listening to a little night music. Tune into the Wednesday night blues show on KTRU HD or Jazz in All its Colors on KTSU.

Trip Chandler Tip: Be sure to grab a bag of Phyllis’s chocolate chili cookies for dessert.

 

Sampling and BYOB

Go global in your goblet and take your bottle to BYOB and budget-friendly Himalaya for Indian-Pakistani cuisine or Cafe Pita for hearty Bosnian fare.

Houston Dairymaids usually has a bottle open for sampling as you taste their selected cheeses of the day anytime before 6 pm closing. Plan for a night at the movies at the nearby neighborhood micro-cinema, 14 Pews, which allows patrons to bring in a bottle and snacks.

Houston Dairymaid

photo courtesy Houston Dairymaids

Trip Chandler Tip: Pack a corkscrew, to-go cups, along with a plastic bag for easy disposal. Wine and dine BYOB options in the area include fried chicken mecca, BBQ Inn, or newcomer, Chicken Ranch.

Spec’s Superstore in Midtown frequently has wines open for sampling, along with cheese and gourmet food finds. Check their weekly newsletter for special events like bubbly tastings and cocktail classes. The location also provides easy access for taking your vino for Vietnamese cuisine at Huynh or Cafe TH, where friendly owner/chef Minh offers a special 3-course menu on Thursday and Friday nights.

Trip Chandler Tip: Minh’s meals are popular so be sure to make a reservation.

Pair your red or white with a night of comedy at the Station Theater, on the edge of downtown, where the $6 shows Thursday-Saturday evenings are BYOB.

Leibman’s Wine and Fine Foods features wines from around the world with open bottles for tasting while you browse. Nearby BYOB restaurants in the Memorial area include Pizaro’s Pizza and LA Crawfish.

Trip Chandler Tip: Most BYOB restaurants charge a modest corkage fee so be sure to check in advance.

Smart Shopping: Houston Wine Merchant offers “best value” cases for stocking up on wine in time for binge watching your favorite Netflix series.

Your Trip Chandlers,

Joni & Dana

Trip ChandlersJoni is a Houston transplant via Kansas, North Carolina, Scotland and New Orleans. Dana is a native Texan who grew up in Houston but considers New Orleans a second home. They have joined forces as Trip Chandler to personalize the city whether you’re here for a short stay or a permanent move.

7 Free Things to Do in Houston June 22-26

There’s never a dull moment in Houston. Here are 7 options for free fun in Houston June 22-26 before planning your free and cheap weekend!

We Love Houston sign

Tuesday (6/23) — Summer Neighborhood Concert series continues Tuesday, 11 am, at Miller Outdoor Theatre. Enjoy the free Houston Symphony concert with Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man, Lincoln Portrait as well as works by John Williams, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and more. Arrive early for the Symphony’s Instrument Petting Zoo. Miller Outdoor Theatre is located at 6000 Hermann Park.

Tuesday (6/23) — Circus Arts continues at Discovery Green each Tuesday evening for summer fun, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm. It’s a combination of ground arts and ground acrobatics. For ages 13 and up. Recommended to bring a yoga mat. No pre-registration required.

Wednesday (6/24) — TxRxLabs is proud to share free workshops for kids courtesy of the Houston Public Library Summer Reading Program. The hands-on science and technology workshop at 10 am will share the basics of electricity and magnetism. This is located in East Houston at Lakewood Library,  8815 Feland St, 77028 — east of Hwy 59 near N. Wayside and Tidwell.

Wednesday (6/24) –Learn the basics of kayaking at a free weekly kayak class at Discovery Green. This is offered Wednesdays in June, July and August, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm. Participants must be 18 years or older.

Thursday (6/25) — Houston Ballet will offer a free, hour-long Ballet Talk at Henington-Alief Regional Library on Thursday at 2 pm. The audience will learn the art form of dance through the story of Peter Pan, using props, pointe shoes, music and video highlights of past productions. This is appropriate for children of all ages.

Thursday (6/25) — Get ready for Queensbury Voice Thursday at CityCentre, 1 pm. It’s all part of Theatrical Thursdays presented by Queensbury Theatre and the Tribble School for the Performing Arts. This week includes a mini concert featuring numbers from a variety of genres including country, pop, classical, folk, rock, and broadway. Theatrical Thursdays continues on select Thursdays this summer.

Thursday (6/25) — Enjoy seven museums for free each Thursday in Houston’s Museum District. {The Weather Museum is relocating and temporarily closed, but is usually an 8th free museum on Thursdays.}

  • Houston Museum of Natural Science: 3 pm – 6 pm
  • Children’s Museum of Houston: 5 pm – 8 pm
  • The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston: 10 am – 9 pm
  • The Health Museum: 2 pm – 5 pm
  • Holocaust Museum Houston: 2 pm – 5 pm
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture: 6 pm – 8 pm
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum: 1 pm – 5 pm

$4.99 AMC Summer Night Movies Benefit Charity

See your favorite movies on the big screen again — and help support charities, to boot. AMC Theatres is hosting $4.99 movies each week all summer. Ticket sales benefit Will Rogers Institute and AMC Cares.

amc cares

Here is the summer schedule:

June 19-25: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
June 26-July 2: The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
July 3-9: Fifty Shades of Grey
July 17-23: Get Hard
July 24-30: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
July 31 – August 6: Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2
August 7-13: Furious 7

Movie times are Monday-Thursday at noon and 10pm and Friday-Sunday at noon. Tickets can be purchased online in advance with a $1 convenience fee. Houston AMC theaters are located at Willowbrook, Dunvale, Deerbrook, Katy Mills, Loews Fountains (Stafford), Spring, First Colony, and Gulf Pointe.

Free Admission to 7 Houston Museums Thursdays

Did you know Thursday is the magic day for FREE admission to many of Houston’s museums?

Browsing a museum is a great indoor activity to learn new things and stay out of the weather. The Children’s Museum of Houston, for example, sponsors Free Family Nights each Thursday from 5 pm – 8 pm. Here is the skinny on free admissions every Thursday:

  • Houston Museum of Natural Science — free Thursday 3 pm – 6 pm
  • Children’s Museum of Houston — free Thursday 5 pm – 8 pm
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — free Thursday 10 am – 9 pm
  • The Health Museum — free Thursday 2 pm – 5 pm
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture — 6 pm – 8 pm
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum — 1 pm – 5 pm
  • Holocaust Museum Houston — 2 pm – 5 pm
  • John C. Freeman Weather Museum — temporary closed

Browse the Houston Museum District Web site for location and hours of Houston museums. Check out the list of Always Free museums and other free museum days.

Father’s Day Freebies and Deals in Houston

Don’t forget to spoil dad this weekend for Father’s Day! Here is a round-up of Houston-area Father’s Day Freebies and Deals for food and fun:

FOOD

crave cupcakeCRAVE Cupcakes: Buy 6 cupcakes for dad, and get 2 free for yourself at CRAVE Cupcakes. This freebie is available Friday – Sunday. The retailer also is hosting “Breakfast with Dad” event Saturday and Sunday, 9 am – noon, with Dad-centric activities over breakfast. Houston area has three locations: Uptown Park, Kirby, and The Woodlands.

Firehouse Subs: Dad gets a free medium sub with purchase of a sub, medium drink and chips June 21. Get coupon here. One coupon per person.

Grub Burger Bar: Dads can take advantage of a free burger June 21 at Grub Burger Bar. Grub is located at 800 Town and Country at CityCentre.

Pollo Tropical: Take dad to Pollo Tropical Sunday for its Buy One Get One Free deal: free 1/4 chicken meal with two sides with purchase of another. Customers who text DAD to 52198 will get a code to show at the register for this special deal.

Spaghetti Warehouse: Dads eat free at Spaghetti Warehouse June 21 by choosing from Incredible 15-Layer Lasagne, World Famous Spaghetti & Meatballs or any of the restaurant’s Original Recipe Spaghetti entrees. No coupon required! Spaghetti Warehouse is located at 901 Commerce downtown.

FUN

Alamo Drafthouse — Catch a free screening of Who Framed Roger Rabbit Sunday at Alamo Drafthouse Mason Park in Katy. The movie (rated PG) begins at 6:30 pm. An exclusive clip of Maron Season Three will be shown before the movie, which is rated PG-13. Children under 6 are not admitted.

Bayou Bend Collections and Gardens: Dads, grandfathers and children 9 and under get free admission this weekend (June 20-21) to Bayou Bend Collections and Gardens to celebrate Father’s Day. Additional adults pay reduced price of $10 or $5 for kids age 10-17. Bayou Bend is located at 6003 Memorial.

Studio Movie Grill: Don’t miss the $3 Family Rewind movie, The Neverending Story. The $3 screening is Sunday, June 21, at 2 pm. This is located at Copperfield and CityCentre Studio Movie Grill.

Free Weekend Fun in Houston June 19-21

Get ready for a weekend of free fun! Here is a snapshot of 17 Free Things to Do in Houston this weekend, June 19-21:

Houston love mural

FRIDAY

Celebrate JuneteenthCelebrate the 150th anniversary of Juneteenth in Houston with traditional Gulf Coast music beginning at 7 pm The line up includes Jewel Brown, Trudy Lynn & Steve Krase, and The Peterson Brothers. Free reserved covered seats are available on performance day at Miller Box office, 10:30 am – 1 pm.

Enjoy classical music — It’s a night of classical music at Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival (TMF) in The Woodlands. The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artist Competition winner is violinist Yuan Tian, who will be the featured soloist with the orchestra performing Shostakovich Violin Concerto. The 8 pm concert will be held at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion.

Watch the batsFamily Bat Chat returns Friday at the platform at Waugh Drive and Allen Parkway. Arrive 30 minutes before sunset to hear a brief presentation on Waugh Bridge Bat Colony. Free public parking at Spotts Park, 401 S. Heights Blvd. at Memorial. This is held the 1st and 3rd Fridays.

Watch a movie under the moon — Head downtown for a free outdoor screening, The Philadelphia Story, at Market Square Park, 8:30 pm. Located at 301 Milam.

Enjoy summer tunes in Pearland — Folks south of Houston can hit Summerfest each Friday night in June. Pearland’s free weekly concert begins at 7 pm at Southdown Park, 2150 Countryplace Parkway. This week features Step Rideau and the Zydeco Outlaws.

SATURDAY

train ride dayRide the train — It’s a Free Public Run Day at Zube Park, Saturday, 9 am – 1 pm, thanks to Houston Area Live Steamers. Families can enjoy riding model trains large enough to ride the 3rd Saturday each month, March – November. Zube Park is located at 17802 Roberts Rd. near Hockley.  photo: Rick White

Free yoga in the park — Enjoy a new summer series, Savasana into Summer, Saturdays at Hermann Park, thanks to Namitzi Yoga. The free weekly yoga class outdoors is open to all skill levels through September 1. Meditation is 8:15 am – 8:25 am with yoga from 8:30 am – 9:30 am. This is located near the Reflection Pond at Hermann Park.

See WWII planes and museumTour the WWII Museum and visit the hangar of the Houston Wing of the Commemorative Air Force 10 am – 3 pm. It’s a great chance to get up close to the Wing’s five flyable WWII military aircraft: climb into a cockpit of a WWII trainer or go inside a WWII Paratroop aircraft. Located at West Houston Airport, 2 miles north of I-10 east off Barker Cypress on Groschke Rd.

Check out School of Rock — Don’t miss the Grand Opening celebration of School of Rock–Sugar Land Saturday, 1 pm – 4 pm It’s a free community celebration! Enjoy free refreshments, small bites, music, tours of the new school, clinics, workshops, activities & more! Located at 1935 Lakeside Plaza Dr. in Sugar Land.

Watch free outdoor movies — Two free outdoor movies will be held in Houston Saturday. 1) Discovery Green: Jaws: 40th Anniversary, 9 pm 2) Central Green Park: Maleficent, dusk at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd. in Katy.

Enjoy the Houston Symphony – The Houston Symphony’s free community concerts continue Saturday at Miller Outdoor Theatre, 8:30 pm. Free reserved seat tickets are available on performance day from 10:30 am – 1 pm at Miller Outdoor Theater box office.

Browse  Flea by Night — Houston’s outdoor flea market, Discovery Green Flea, hits the evening hours during the summer as Discovery Green Flea by Night, Saturday, 6 pm – 10 pm. Browse artful kitsch, vintage items, recycled and repurposed items, and collectibles. Adults can get creative at a Make It/Take It craft with The Tinderbox + live music. Located at 1500 McKinney on the West end of Jones Lawn.

fireworksLove outdoor music and fireworks — Folks north of Houston can enjoy Waterway Nights each Saturday in June for live music, strolling entertainers, and fireworks over The Woodlands! This Saturday features Grant Harrison, 7 pm – 9:30 pm. Fireworks begin at approximately 9:20 pm. Located at Waterway Square in The Woodlands.

Attend one-year partyBoyert Shooting Center’s Houston location is turning one this weekend with free festivities Saturday and Sunday. Tour Boyert Shooting Center, test your skills on the carnival-themed simulator, participate in carnival games, enter to win door prizes and firearms, and enjoy food from two of Houston’s popular food trucks. The event is free and open to the public. Located at 9099 Westheimer.

SUNDAY

Participate in yoga International Day of Yoga debuts in Houston Sunday, 8:30 am – 4 pm, thanks to the Consulate General of India. Folks can enjoy a number of free interactive yoga sessions, demonstrations by experts, and a yoga fair. Register online here if you plan to attend. Photo IDs are required and attendees should bring a yoga mat and flexible clothing. Located at George R. Brown downtown.

Celebrate summer solstice — Rothko Chapel is presenting a complete day to Summer Solstice. The day begins with a 6:20 am sunrise Tibetan yoga practice led by Alejandro Chaoul of the Ligmincha Texas Center for the Meditative and Healing Arts. The solstice celebration at the Chapel ends at sunset with a performance by Kaminari Taiko of Houston, the premier Japanese drumming group in the Gulf Coast region.  Located at 3900 Yupon.

Watch Roger Rabbit — Catch a free screening of Who Framed Roger Rabbit Sunday at Alamo Drafthouse Mason Park in Katy. The movie (rated PG) begins at 6:30 pm. An exclusive clip of Maron Season Three will be shown before the movie, which is rated PG-13. Children under 6 are not admitted.

Attend one-year partyBoyert Shooting Center’s Houston location is turning one this weekend with free festivities Saturday and Sunday. Tour Boyert Shooting Center, test your skills on the carnival-themed simulator, participate in carnival games, enter to win door prizes and firearms, and enjoy food from two of Houston’s popular food trucks. The event is free and open to the public. Located at 9099 Westheimer.

Free Admission for Fathers at Bayou Bend June 20-21

fathers day bayou bendFather’s Day weekend is special at Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, thanks to this deal! Fathers and grandfathers get free admission Saturday and Sunday, June 20-21,      1 pm-5 pm.

Visitors can see American art and antiques in the historic mansion, walk the 14-acre Southern gardens, and listen to live music. Complimentary lemonade will be served, too.

Kids age 10 – 17 are $5 with those under nine free. Additional adults pay a reduced fee of $10.

Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens is the house museum for American decorative arts of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. It’s located at 6003 Memorial.

This is a sponsored post by Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens.