Houston Rodeo Guide: Something for Everyone at the Big Show

Categories: Festivals

Photo by Nicholas Zalud
The Big Show is here again.
The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has been an enduring success since it started as the "Fat Stock Show" way back in 1932. It has grown into an enormous collection of shows, auctions, exhibits and activities that has something for everyone. Whether you're a cattle rancher, horse rider, child, parent, wine enthusiast, live-music fan, foodie, thrill seeker, gardener or dog lover, there's something geared specifically to your interests. Here's just a small sampling of what's going on this year.

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Come & Take It Comedy Takeover Takes Over

Categories: Comedy, Festivals

Photos by Jesse Sendejas Jr.
Maria Bamford

The moment the Come & Take It Comedy Takeover proved it was serious business came near the end of local legend Andy Huggins' set.

"You've been hall of fame quality," he said to the wall-to-wall audience in Warehouse Live's Studio.

That sentiment was echoed by many of the 50-plus comics that shared the bill with him over the weekend at the first-time event. Some younger talents with national gigs and lots of upside were just as impressed as Huggins by the turnout. But hearing it come from one of the original Texas Outlaw Comics, someone who's ridden the waves of Houston comedy for decades and a man revered by many of our city's newest comics, gave the endorsement a little more heft.

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The 2014 Houston Press New Year's Eve Guide: Where to Party in the Bayou City

Each holiday season has its schedule. We eat turkey and stuffing, then we decorate a tree and open presents to the tune of constant Christmas music. But those are just the opening acts. The main event is New Year's Eve, where you count down the seconds until a new year, make a champagne toast, and dance and laugh while reflecting on the past year's ups and unavoidable downs. As always, we've provided you with a list of the best events of Houston to ring in the new year. From masquerades to comedy shows, four-course meals to kids' parties, there's something for everyone.

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Being Horny at the Texas Renaissance Festival

Categories: Festivals

Jef With One F
This year, as I do most years, I took the Wife With One F to the Texas Renaissance Festival for her birthday. Both of us have been going since we were teenagers, and it's very rare for us to miss the season entirely. However, this year something got on my nerves more so than ever before.

My wife almost always wears a pair of satyr horns when she attends. She bought them there, and it's pretty much the only time she ever gets to wear them. What no one tells you when you purchase the horns, though, is that a single joke is going to be hurled at you over and over and over again until finally you either take them off or just stop going.

"Hey horny lady!"

It literally never ends, and every single barker and shopkeeper that throws out the line seems to believe it's the first time it's ever been done. You can't walk past any section of the festival without at least one person using it as a bawdy attention grabber, and it happens year after year after year.

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[Video] As RenFest Comes to a Close, We Ask the Workers What's Next

Categories: Festivals

After a glorious few weeks, the 2014 Texas Renaissance Festival comes to a close this weekend after celebrating a Celtic Christmas. With what looks to be nice weather this weekend, it looks like the crowds will be out in full force, giving merchants and performers plenty of chances to make an impression.

But what happens next?

It's easy to forget that RenFest lasts for only eight weekends, which means there are still 44 weekends left in the year where the people working RenFest are off doing other things. This got us to wondering: What is the RenFest offseason like?

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[Video] We Watched a Taser Scramble at Fun Fun Fun Fest

Categories: Festivals

"If you've got a stomach for Jackass then Punk Rock Circus is an all you can eat buffet of pure stupidity."

Reading those words, I knew exactly where I would be Fun Fun Fun Fest Sunday afternoon at 2:25 p.m. If I'm somewhere and there's a sideshow or a stunt show or simply just human beings doing awful things to their bodies for my amusement, I'll pretty much stop whatever else I might be doing to watch.

I do not watch because I enjoy the simple suffering of others. That helps, sure, but there's a difference between doing stunts and performing them. I would go as far as to argue that there's an art to causing pain, one that's being rapidly lost in our world of viral videos.

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[Video] Meeting the People of the 2014 Halloween Montrose Crawl

Costumes have been packed away. Leftover candy is being consumed. Thoughts are turning toward Thanksgiving. After weeks of anticipation, Halloween has come and gone. Sure, between now and then there will be other costumes parties and cosplay conventions and other excuses to dress up, but Halloween is the big day, the one that we look forward to the most.

This Halloween was even more exciting because it was on a Friday, which basically meant that the entire weekend was going to be one long, costumed party. Saturday Halloweens are cool too, and we expect 2015 to be pretty wild, but there's something about getting dressed and knowing the entire weekend is ahead of you that just makes a Friday Halloween a bit more special.

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Bayou City Haunts: The 2014 Houston Halloween Guide

Categories: Festivals


There's nothing quite like All Hallows' Eve falling on a weekend night, and this year, the costumed chaos will be especially rowdy, since that lucky Friday date will give party-goers plenty of time to recover from the revelry. And with Halloween falling on prime calendar pickings, there's quite a bit of trouble to be had. From the naughty parties to the nerdy museum celebrations and the family-friendly festivals, this year's holiday will have it all. There's even a horror convention thrown in for good measure.

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10 Artsy/Cultural Houston-Only Summer To-Dos

Photo by sozavac
Summer in Houston is, well let's just say the obvious, really freaking hot. Unlike our coasts to the east and the west, the Gulf Coast dampness makes a person want to hibernate indoors from May through September. But even at 99 degrees and 100 percent humidity, we Houstonians persevere. It could always be worse and we are used to it.

In terms of art and culture, Houston's summer months may slow down a bit, but there is still plenty going on - outdoors and indoors - and being a Houstonian means taking it all in.

10. Take a picture at Soto's Houston Penetrable at MFAH

Jesús Rafael Soto, Houston Penetrable, 2004-14, lacquered aluminum structure, PVC tubes, and water-based silkscreen ink, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Museum purchase funded by the Caroline Wiess Law Accessions Endowment Fund. © Estate of Jesús Rafael Soto. Used by permission. Photograph © The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Thomas R. DuBrock, photographer.
There are plenty of places to take selfies in Houston; why we could even compile a list of them if we so desired. However, only in the Houston summer can you swim through the newly constructed Houston Penetrable at the MFAH, which is a part of Jesús Rafael Soto's signature Penetrables series. On view through September in the mezzanine of the Caroline Weiss Law Building, the Soto piece is a dangling, "kinetic" experience of clear and yellow plastic tentacles hanging from the ceiling. The museum hopes this will be an annual summer exhibit, but for now, you only have until September 1 to immerse yourself.

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[Video] Houston Celebrates a Very Exciting Pride 2014

Categories: Festivals

Pride is more than just a parade and it's more than a festival. It's a celebration to be sure, a technicolor party that often features Houston at its wildest, but it's more than that too.

Pride is a statement, this year maybe more than ever. After all the controversy about bathrooms trying to distract from the HERO ordinance, the city council did finally pass it, the latest in a long line of moments in Houston history that shows while we may live in a very red Texas, we're not a city of close-minded hillbillies who wish it 1914 rather than 2014.

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