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Your weekly guide to Houston: Five (plus) don't-miss events — sexy ski bunny mingle included

Your weekly guide: 5 (plus) don't-miss events — with sexy ski bunnies

Urban Green's Hula in Hermann Park May 2013 crowd venue
Urban Green crowd at its preceding social affair at Hermann Park. Photo by Morris Malakoff
8, WHAM preview party, November 2012, Rachel Schipul, Jenni Rebecca Stephenson no photo id
Fresh Arts' Winter Holiday Art Market is stocked by 60 plus local merchants, artists and designers. Photo by © Roswitha Vogler/Photosbyrovo.com
Aurora Picture Show hosts BYOB "Bring Your Own Beamer"
The "Bring Your Own Beamer" affair invites artists of any discipline to bring their projectors and shine their work on the walls of a chosen venue. Courtesy of Aurora Picture Show
BooTown party
BooTown is growing up with this first annual fundraiser. Courtesy photo
Austin Photo Set: News_Adam Sparks_John Mueller BBQ_jan 2012_john2
Celebrated pitmaster John Mueller will be in Houston this Saturday for Q for a Cause II.  Photo by Adam Sparks
Urban Green's Hula in Hermann Park May 2013 crowd venue
8, WHAM preview party, November 2012, Rachel Schipul, Jenni Rebecca Stephenson no photo id
Aurora Picture Show hosts BYOB "Bring Your Own Beamer"
BooTown party
Austin Photo Set: News_Adam Sparks_John Mueller BBQ_jan 2012_john2

Where has this year gone? I suppose the adage "time flies by when you're having fun" is surely true for this year as Houston organizations have offered a record number of things to do around the city. With Thanksgiving around the corner, it won't be long before we are celebrating the arrival of 2014.

Let's concentrate on the present, shall we? On tap this week are a trio of art festivals, two lovely parties and a one-of-a-kind artsy gathering of moving images.

Planning for your outing is easier if you click on the links below each event suggestion. You'll find a feature that downloads the deets to your electronic calendar alongside information on where to eat, drink and shop nearby your final destination.

Urban Green's Fall Event "Ski the Green"

Let's pretend we live in the frigid north but without the freezing temps. Though we love Hermann Park because of its vibrant green mantle, it's seasonable to envision what the rolling berms may look like if they were covered in fresh snow. For the fall social gathering of the Urban Green young professionals, the Historic Clubhouse at Hermann Park will be decorated with the typical accouterments of a ski lodge as it welcomes snow bunnies to mingle around the fire.

Plenty of strong drinks, music, food and a silent auction add to the party chaired by Paula Whitten-Doolin and Oliver Doolin, Eve French and Courtney Carlson Siegmund and Brandon Siegmund.

The skinny: Thursday, 7 p.m.; Historic Clubhouse at Hermann Park; tickets start at $30.

Fresh Arts' Eighth Annual Winter Holiday Art Market

'Tis the season to shop till you drop, which is easier when Fresh Arts hosts this yearly seasonal market that's stocked by 60 plus local merchants, artists and designers. Expect the galleries of Winter Street Studios to turn into a vibrant display of one-of-a-kind paintings, jewelry, clothing, personal items, sculptures, clay and on and on — and on. If you can't find something here for those hard-to-shop-for loved ones, you aren't looking hard enough.

For best selection, attend the preview party on Friday, 6-10 p.m. Fresh Arts' WHAM continues through the weekend.

The skinny: Friday (6-10 p.m.), Saturday (11 a.m.-8 p.m.) and Sunday (11 a.m.-4 p.m.); Winter Street Studios; admission to the Friday preview party is $10, free on Saturday and Sunday.

Aurora Picture Show and Menil Collection host BYOB "Bring Your Own Beamer"

Just when you think you've seen everything, the Menil Collection and Aurora Picture Show burst your bubble with a first-of-a-kind artistic, crowdsourced event. The "Bring Your Own Beamer" affair, a trend that began in Berlin, invites artists of any discipline to bring their projectors and shine their work on the walls of a chosen venue. That would be the Menil Collection.

I guess you can say BYOB is a video bacchanal of sorts. Contributors have been asked to keep the content family friendly.

The skinny: Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Menil Collection; free event.

Note: Due to inclement weather predictions, the event has been rescheduled for April 25, 2014.

21st Annual Artcrawl Houston

The network of art organizations and art studios that dwell in the warehouses of downtown aren't always easy to identify, hiding in buildings that can be described as "having character." Artcrawl is your opportunity to discover what's happening in the lives of more than 150 urban pioneers who have brought creative activity to the Artist Warehouse District.

Use this map to get around. Or download the Falcon mobile app to help you navigate the scene. If you need more artsy inspiration, be sure to hit the Via Colori Street Painting Festival.

The skinny: Saturday, 10 a.m.- 9p.m.; all over downtown; free event.

First Annual BooTown Bash "An evening of all things weird and wonderful"

This group of nutsos has been entertaining, bewildering and confusing locals with its mix of hilarious readings, peculiar art presentations and benshi-style performances. How has BooTown survived? Through the small contributions of its loyal followers.

BooTown is growing up with this first annual fundraiser. It's a gala, but it isn't. The only things getting all dolled up for this interesting gathering are the puppets that will compete in the pageant. Adding to the bash are performances by Lucas Gorham of Grandfather Child, a silent auction, photo booth, food, drinks and a lineup of Vinyl Ranch DJs.

The skinny: Saturday, 8 p.m.; The Barn; tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door.

Staff writer and resident gourmand Eric Sandler's pick: Q for a Cause II

Eric says: "Hard core barbecue nerds already know the name John Mueller; the man's reputation for smoking great meat and hard-living earned him a cover story in Texas Monthly in February 2012. About a year ago, he had a well-publicized falling out with his sister LeAnn and set off on his own to launch John Mueller Meat Co. Whatever his flaws as a human being, the man is hands-down one of the best pitmasters in Texas.

"On Saturday, Houstonians can save themselves a drive to Austin thanks to Q for a Cause II, where Mueller will serve meat and proceeds will benefit Houston’s homeless veterans through event partners the Houston Housing Authority and the Houston Coalition for the Homeless.

"At last year's event, Mueller smoked 1,000 pounds of meat that sold out in two hours. This year, organizers have promised to double the output, but there's no way the meat lasts until the scheduled 6 p.m. closing time. Get there early, make friends with the people in line and enjoy some of the best brisket and beef ribs in Texas the world."

The skinny: Saturday, noon-6 p.m.; Cottonwoon; admission is free, food is a la carte.