weekend event planner

Here are the top 9 things to do in Houston this weekend

Here are the top 9 things to do in Houston this weekend

Julep Derby Day Kentucky Derby Houston
Don your your best hat and head to Julep for Derby Day. Photo by Emily Jaschke

Even though this is the weekend of wall-to-wall Cinco de Mayo and Kentucky Derby parties, let us remind you that you can still go to museums — for free.

On Saturday and Sunday, Bank of America will offer free entry to museums in Houston for cardholders through its Museums on Us program. If you have a BOA card, you can visit the Children's Museum of Houston, or the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, where the Vincent Van Gogh exhibit is still in progress. 

Here are some other fun ways to spend your weekend:

Thursday, May 2

Barnes & Noble River Oaks presents Gary Sinise
Actor Gary Sinise has done a lot of things in his time: he co-founded the legendary Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago, was nominated for an Oscar for his role in Forrest Gump, starred in spinoffs from both CSI and Criminal Minds and, apparently, can also slap da bass big time. You can now add author to his list of accomplishments. He has recently dropped his memoir, Grateful American: A Journey from Self to Service, which he'll be signing copies of over at the Barnes & Noble in River Oaks — real early in the morning. 10 am.

Latin Wave at Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
The Latin Wave is once again upon us. For the 14th year in a row, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston is bringing in films and filmmakers from Latin America with this four-day fest. Cristina Gallego will be here with her film Birds of Passage, while Margarita Hernandez will show up with Che, Memories of a Secret Year and Federico Veiroj will come with Belmonte. You can also get a couple of chances to see Alfonso Cuaron's Oscar-winning film Roma on the big screen. (Hopefully, it'll be shown with its straight-up engulfing, Dolby Atmos mix intact.) 5 pm (11 am Saturday; 1 pm Sunday).

Friday, May 3

Insomnia Gallery 8th Anniversary Weekend
Though the gallery will technically turn eight next month, the folks at Insomnia will basically spend Friday through Sunday having an action-packed party. It starts on Friday with an art show paying tribute to "queen of color" Lisa Frank. On Saturday, there will be Mortal Kombat 11 and Super Smash Bros ultimate tournaments. And things will wind down on Sunday with a live music showcase, featuring performances from Tee Vee, Pitter Patter, Future Ghost, Heavenly Stars, and Colin. 7-11 pm (4-11 pm Saturday). 

My Favorite Murder Live at Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land
When My Favorite Murder hit the podcast scene in 2016, it tapped into an audience that doesn't get a lot of ink: female true-crime geeks. Hosts Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark found they had a bond in the history of sensational, homicidal crimes and turned it into one of the most popular comedy podcasts out there. They even have a spinoff book, Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide, dropping in May. Before that happens, they're hitting the road, doing a live show right here on Friday. 8 pm.

Saturday, May 4

Camp Bow Wow Greater Houston Heights Grand Opening & Adoption Event
There will be several Star Wars-themed "May the 4th Be With You" events popping off all over the place on Saturday. By far, the most adorable one is this grand opening/adoption party for the newest, doggy day-care facility. This event will come correct with live music, complementary beer (from Eureka Heights!), a professional selfie station, a dog biscuit bar and other cute stuff. And you can get Padawan (puppy) and/or Jedi (dog) adoptions from Animal Justice League and Pup Squad Animal Rescue. Noon to 4 pm.

Generation Park Block Party at Redemption Square
Come for a day filled with live music, delicious food and drinks and plenty of activities for the whole family at this free, second-annual block party. Headlining music acts include Sundance Head, winner of The Voice's 11th season, and contemporary country artist Bri Bagwell. And if you wanna get your grub on, you can check out Redemption Square’s newest restaurants, Wholesome Kitchen and Wholesome Pies, or take in Food Truck Row and their many options. And, of course, there will be a Kids Zone with face painters, glitter artists, caricaturists, and more. 3-10 pm.

Fifth Annual Julep Derby Day
Alba Huerta's nationally acclaimed cocktail bar on Washington Avenue typically draws more than 1,000 guests for its annual Derby Day party. Expect two screens for the race, lawn games, a spritz bar, mint julep bars, three cocktail bars, a DJ, live music, live auctions for whiskey tastings, and more. Eats come courtesy of El Topo Truck and chef Ryan Lachaine of Riel, who will provide hot dogs. Huerta has apparently procured some 5,000 flowers from local farms and local businesses to commemorate the party's five-year anniversary. Tickets are $15, with discount packages for four and up. Noon.

Sunday, May 5

Three Amigos Quote-Along at Alamo Drafthouse LaCenterra
Since Cinco de Mayo will most likely have people running around drunk off tequila and wearing big-ass sombreros, you might wanna commemorate the day by being in an indoor setting and watching Steve Martin, Chevy Chase, and Martin Short play clueless silent-screen stars going up on against villainous bandito in Three Amigos. It was not favorably reviewed when it came out in 1986 (in his Texas Monthly review, James Wolcott called it "abysmal"), but it's still an effectively silly time at the movies. 6 pm.

NCT 127 at Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land
You know, when it comes K-pop, BTS has been getting all the love lately. But there are many other groups kicking out the Korean jams. Truly the most massive group is NCT, a South Korean boy band that consists of 18 members. This group is actually made up of several subunits (our favorite is the surprisingly soulful NCT U, who gave us the sexy "The 7th Sense"), including NCT 127, hailing from Seoul. Embarking on their first world tour, they will make a Houston appearance this weekend. 8 pm.