Fall is finally here, as evidenced the by the joyful chill in the air. That means myriad outdoor events and some early Halloween-themed offerings. Also look for the the return of the beloved RenFest, where you can party like an era before COVID and wacky presidential debates.
Scare up some fun this weekend with these best bets for a good time in Houston.
Thursday, October 1
Bayou Preservation Association presents 17th Annual Symposium
The Bayou Preservation Association will present its 17th Annual Symposium as a virtual event with the theme Bayou-Diversity: Celebrate, Protect & Restore. The symposium, taking place over two days, will address the expanding importance of diversity in all its forms — physical, geomorphological, biological, socioeconomic, and conceptual. For this year’s conference, the Bayou Preservation Association has invited presenters from Asakura Robinson, City of Houston, Houston Audubon and so much more. 8 am.
11th Annual Keels & Wheels Uncorked at Lone Flight Star Museum
The evening will feature luxury items and experiences in the form of a live and silent auction curated by Auction Chair Jennifer Gerdes, including lavish packages of fine wines, spa getaways, hotel and resort stays, dinner certificates, autographed collectibles, and much more. Proceeds from the event benefit Lighthouse Charity Team and Today’s Harbor for Children. 6 pm.
Friday, October 2
Zoo Boo at Houston Zoo
Well, this looks cute: All little ghouls and goblins are welcome to take part in the Houston Zoo's month-long, scary/spooky event. Costumes are strongly encouraged, and guests will have plenty to experience, including the Spooky Train Village, the Friendly Dragon, where guests can hear a kid-friendly short story, and the Wildlife Carousel, which has been transformed into a spooktacular Scary-Go-Round. More than 10 different Instagram-able photo options spread all over the zoo. 9 am.
Kemah Boardwalk presents Boo on the Boardwalk
It's time to head over to Kemah and get scared with this month-long freakfest. The Boardwalk will come alive with Freaky Fridays, Scary Saturdays, and Spooky Sundays, each night featuring free activities, live musi,c and ghostly entertainment. Guests of all ages can enjoy a variety of festive and spooky thrills, including the Little Boo Haunted Fun House, Halloween-themed crafts, balloon artists, vampire stilt walkers, creepy creatures, and live concerts.
Saturday, October 3
The Texas Renaissance Festival
Now in its 46th year, the long-running festival where you can act like you're in medieval times and gorge on turkey legs ain't gonna let a pesky pandemic put a kibosh on their festivities. Expect nine fun-filled themed weekends from now until the end of November. This weekend, it's gonna be a full-fledged Oktoberfest, where everybody will be slamming down ale and saying the most inappropriate things — because, that's how things were back then. 9 am.
Hocus Pocus at the Drive-In at Sawyer Yards
Halloween is officially upon us, which means that a lot more screenings of this bit of 1993 nonsense, with Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy as a trio of sisters who wreak witchy havoc on the town of Salem, Massachusetts, will be popping off from now until Halloween. (Multiplexes will be playing the film this weekend.) 7:30 pm.
Sunday, October 4
Breast Cancer Can Stick It! presents Drummathon
Drummers, musicians and friends come together from all over the world to raise funds through their own online fundraising page to fight against breast cancer. The Virtual Live Stream Drummathon will commence with live music, auctions, celebrity guest appearances, breast cancer survivors, drum solos by top fundraisers, and the top three fundraiser interviews. 1 pm.
The Gumbo Jam at Shoeshine Charley's Big Top Lounge
Sometimes, you just need some gumbo in your life — and this weekly event is here to give it to you. This Louisiana-inspired jam session is home of all things funky and groovy. Singers, rappers, poets, musicians and of course horn players from all over come party in the loose, laid-back vibe of #TeamHornSection and The Gumbo Band. If you like to dance and hear great music (and get the best gumbo in Houston), this is the place. 8:30 pm.