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Your weekly guide to Houston: Five (plus) don't-miss events — bigger, better Bayou City Art Fest included

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Work by Daniel Ng featured artist bayou city art festival
The 43rd Annual Bayou City Art Festival is bigger than ever as it welcomes more than 400 fine artists, including featured artist Daniel Ng, whose work is picture here. Courtesy photo
Hermann Park Kite Festival
The Hermann Park Kite Festival includes such activities as kite-making, kite-flying competitions, student performances and play areas. Courtesy of Hermann Park Conservancy
Rice Design Alliance spring home tour March 2014 5503 Sturbridge
Rice Design Alliance 38th Annual Architecture Tour focuses on what architecture firms have dreamed up to increase size and livability in older residences. Photo by © Paul Hester
6 Women of Wardrobe event August 2013 Marcy de Luna, Roseann Rogers, Lauren Levicki
Women of Wardrobe's "Spring Fling" contributes to the efforts of Dress for Success Houston. Photo by © Michelle Watson/CultureMapSNAP.com
Apollo Chamber Players
Apollo Chamber Players illustrates that fine art doesn't exist in a vacuum. Composers always draw from their rich environments. Photo by Robert Seale
Work by Daniel Ng featured artist bayou city art festival
Hermann Park Kite Festival
Rice Design Alliance spring home tour March 2014 5503 Sturbridge
6 Women of Wardrobe event August 2013 Marcy de Luna, Roseann Rogers, Lauren Levicki
Apollo Chamber Players
Joel Luks, head shot, column mug, April 2013

On tap this weekend is an outdoors art festival, a family gathering filled with flying objects, a home tour that reveals local ingenuity, a folky concert, a bartending event suitable for a movie montage and a party in which young professional gals help disadvantaged women.

43rd Annual Bayou City Art Festival Memorial Park

The pop up settlement of white tents that's mushrooming right now at Memorial Park is in preparation for the three-day al fresco fest Houstonians await for every spring. The 43rd Annual Bayou City Art Festival is bigger than ever as it welcomes more than 400 fine artists and smiths to this year's curated event. That's in addition to music performances, a children's activity area and a food  truck zone. So think of the gathering as not just a shopping bonzanza, but also as a family outing with something for everyone.

Latin Jazz and R&B queen Margo Ray (Saturday, 4:15 p.m.) and blues legend Marcia Ball (Sunday, 2:45 p.m.) headline the tuneful entertainment. For the artsy socialites, the "Radiant Orchid Art Heist" (Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.) is where to see and be seen. Find parking information here.

The skinny: Friday through Sunday; Memorial Park; $15 general admission; $3 for children ages 3-12.

Hermann Park Kite Festival

There's something irresistibly poetic about kites, how the rise against the wind, how they hover in absolute freedom and how they rouse our eyes to look to the heavens. Let your imagination run wild in the Hermann Park Kite Festival, an affair that includes such activities as kite-making, kite-flying competitions, student performances and play areas.

That's in addition to demonstrations from the South Houston Area Recreational Kiters, a group that's known for executing fabulous tricks with the airborne objects.

The skinny: Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Hermann Park; free event.

Rice Design Alliance 38th Annual Architecture Tour "Additionally"

If your current living space is hindering you from living the life you really want, you have two choices: Move or improve. As the availability of real estate inventory continues to decline, more and more home owners are choosing to add on to their current dwellings.

Get inspired by what architecture firms have dreamed up to increase size and livability in older residences. Modern ingenuity and timeless charm meld in a collection of homes that will open their doors for design curious guests to gather ideas. Thus the theme of the tour, "Additionally" — get it?

The tour is for Rice Design Alliance members only. Memberships can be purchased starting at $45.

The skinny: Saturday and Sunday, 1-6 p.m.; various locations; tickets are $25 for RDA members and their guests.

Women of Wardrobe's Ninth Annual "Spring Fling"

You have to love the ladies behind the young professionals group Women of Wardrobe. The philanthropic gals know just how to have a good time while contributing to the efforts of Dress for Success Houston, a nonprofit that provides professional attire for disadvantaged women.

Presented by Audi Central Houston, this year's "Spring Fling" welcomes the support of Hay Merchant, Bonjour Creperie, Sprinkles Cupcakes and Blue Label Vodka in an afternoon of casual mixing and mingling. Single guys looking for a lovely lady — go.

The skinny: Saturday, 3-6 p.m.; Taps House of Beer; $20 in advance, $25 at the door, entry is free for Women of Wardrobe members.

Apollo Chamber Players presents "Folk Dances of the British Isles"

Having just released its debut recording titled European Folkscapes, the Apollo Chamber Players are in tip top musical shape to perform another concert that reveals connections between master composers and their local traditions. What Apollo does best is illustrate that fine art doesn't exist in a vacuum. Composers always draw from their rich environments. Tuning into these influences brings cultural history to life.

"Folk Dances of the British Isles" focuses on tunes from English, Scottish and Irish provenance.

The skinny: Sunday, 6 p.m.; Christ the King Lutheran Church; tickets are $25 general admission, $20 seniors and $10 students.

CultureMap's resident gourmand Eric Sandler's pick: Jojo Martinez's "Speed Rack Training Session"

Eric says: "Speed Rack is a competition in which female bartenders compete to make classic cocktails as quickly and accurately as possible. It's a national competition, with preliminary event in various cities ahead of the finals in New York. Houston bartender Jojo Martinez will be the city's only representative in the national finals, having won an online vote to earn a wildcard birth.

"In order to win, Martinez needs to practice, and Houston's chapter of the US Bartenders Guild is determined to put her through her paces. On Sunday, the guild has organized a trial run where former Speed Rack champion and native Houstonian Yael Vengroff will coach Martinez in front of a crowd of fans and judges. The goal is to replicate the chaotic atmosphere of the New York event so that Martinez is ready when it counts. Come downtown to cheer her on.

The skinny: Sunday, 8 p.m.; Goro & Gun; free event.

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