weekend event planner
Top things to do in Houston this weekend: Queens of the Stone Age, Michael Bublé, and more
Houston rocks out this weekend with some big concerts: A.J. Croce, Akon, and Queens of the Stone Age all take the stage. Speaking of big shows, Jurassic Quest features more than 50 massive, animatronic dinosaurs at equally big NRG Center.
In a nod to our city's nation-leading diversity, the Islamic Arts Festival celebrates 10 years, while an astronaut-hosted screening of The Right Stuff pays homage to our Space City status. And for Sunday Funday, America's Got Talent fans can spend an evening with Howie Mandel.
Enjoy; here are your best bets for the weekend.
Thursday, December 7
Superstar and “sentient tuxedo of a man” Bublé will pass out whiskey here in Houston. Photo courtesy of Fraser & Thompson
Charming singer/actor/pitchman Michael Bublé will host a fan meet-and-greet and tasting event for his Fraser & Thompson Whiskey from 4 pm to 5 pm Thursday, December 7 at Spec’s - Fountain View (2020 Fountain View Dr.). Plan for a long line, arrive early, and be ready to sip the Canadian showman’s celebrity spirit at what’s dubbed the “Easy, Now” pop-up lounge within the store. Bublé is expected to pass out sips only — officially, he’s not slated to sign bottles or pose for photos. 4pm to 5 pm.
THIS WAY: A Houston Group Show showcases new work from 12 visionary, Houston-based Black artists, including Imhotep Blot by way of Amaechina Blot and Studio KER led by Michael Bennett, Colby Deal, Nahtan (Nate Edwards), Dom Elam, Amarie Gipson, Gem Hale, Charonda Johnson, Berlin Nicholas, Irene Antonia Diane Reece, and Jason Woods (Flash Gordon Parks). They all were invited to examine innovative ways of participating in the storytelling of Black legacy and heritage in Houston Freedmen’s Town. Through Sunday, March 24. 7 pm.
Senegalese-American singer/producer/entrepreneur Aliaune Damala Bouga Time Puru Nacka Lu Lu Lu Badara Akon Thiam – that’s AKON, to you and me – will be in Houston this weekend. He’ll be performing as part of The Superfan Tour, in support of his 2022 album, TT Freak. Watch him perform such hits as “Locked Up” and try to forget that he has a Wakanda-inspired city in Senegal that he hasn’t finished building yet. 7:30 pm.
Brett Goldstein is a breakthrough British creative force on and offscreen who has emerged as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after multi-hyphenates. He is the co-executive producer, writer, and star of Ted Lasso, playing the brash yet lovable Roy Kent. He is also the host of podcast, Films To Be Buried With, which finds him in candid conversation with special guests as they discuss the films that have shaped them. Now, he’s going around the country giving you some stand-up goodness. 8 pm.
Friday, December 8
If you’re a person who still prefers to check the time by looking at your wrist, join Zadok Jewelers for an extraordinary showcase of the world's rarest and most remarkable timepieces. Shop among many brands such as Bulgari, Cartier, Chopard, Grand Seiko, Hublot and IWC. And there will also be booze! On Friday only, guests can join in for a whiskey tasting from 4 to 6 pm with The Macklowe Whiskey. 10 am.
Meet a kind Triceratops. at Jurassic Quest. Photo courtesy of Jurassic Quest
Jurassic Quest is a dinosaur adventure for the whole family. The main dinosaur exhibit features over 50 ultra-realistic, life-size animatronic dinosaurs. Visitors can interact with these huge creatures, learn about them, and even ride a few. There are also huge T-Rex and Triceratops fossil digs where young paleontologists can uncover long, hidden dinosaur bones, the “Dino Bounce” area with several dinosaur-themed inflatable mazes, face painting, dino crafts, and more. Noon (9 am Saturday and Sunday).
The Midtown Mistletoe Market, with the theme of "Holiday Twinkle in Midtown," will feature artisans and specialty crafters showcasing their unique creations. 29 artists and makers will be participating, including Miriam O’Brien, Anna Naumenko, Charles Washington, and Samantha Peterson. There will be picture-twinkling lights, Santa Claus, holiday music, craft classes for both adults and children, holiday-themed public art installations, food options, and more. 5 pm (10 am Saturday).
The Music Box Theater will celebrate Christmas and The Beatles in one memorable, festive holiday concert, A Beatles Holiday Cabaret. Song selections include some of the group’s original Christmas/Beatles mash-ups, such as “O Darlin”/”Please Come Home for Christmas,” “The First Noel”/”Here Comes the Sun,” “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”/”Marshmallow World” and “Help”/”O Come Emmanuel.” There will also be lots of other holiday and The Beatles musical surprises. Through Sunday, December 23. 7;30 pm (2 pm Sunday).
Saturday, December 9
This year, the Islamic Arts Society will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Islamic Arts Festival, the oldest festival of Islamic arts in the country. During the two-day festival, visitors will have the opportunity to see the work of renowned artists who will be available in person. They will be able to browse through the festival hall and purchase magnificent pieces of art for their homes. We’re talking hundreds of pieces of art under one roof, live paintings, Ebru, henna, bazaar, food, and more. 10:30 am.
Based on the bestseller by Tom Wolfe, this Oscar-winning, 1983 epic is about the race to put the first man on the moon. Four U.S. Air Force test pilots (Scott Glenn, Ed Harris, Dennis Quaid, Sam Shepard) are chosen as the bravest, the best, and the most daring—the men with “the right stuff.” Retired Astronaut Colonel Terry Virts, who will introduce this “Movies Houstonians Love” presentation, says this film inspired him to become an astronaut. 5 pm.
Sawyer Yards presents "Hands Talk," a solo exhibition of new works by Houston artist Debbie Gibbs. The mixed media artworks in this exhibit, composed of paper and acrylic on stretched canvas, highlight the role of hands in communicating and connecting. From the most literal interpretation, sign language, to symbolic gestures, hands can say a lot. The racially diverse hands visible in the works represent the beauty that diversity brings to the world as well as the complexity it brings to communication and connection. Through Friday, December 29. 5 pm.
When we heard Queens of the Stone Age is coming to Houston this weekend (in support of their new album In Times New Roman…), we immediately thought of the time Will Ferrell pulled out his trusty cowbell and performed with the band of Saturday Night Live. (If you’ve never seen it, here you go.) While it would be a dream to see them team up for a live performance here in H-Town, we’re still looking forward to Josh Homme and his crew performing the hard-driving numbers that make them one of the best rock bands working today. 7 pm.
Sunday, December 10
Cigna Sunday in the Park does its final outdoor get-together of the year this weekend. Of course, Sunday in the Park spotlights Houston’s most unique neighborhoods around the city with a focus on promoting healthy living, supporting neighborhood economies and a sense of community. Since it’s December, we have a holiday-themed celebration at Tuffly Park. The free, family-friendly event will include activities for the entire family including bounce houses, live music, dancing, free food, games and photos with Santa. Noon.
Spend Sunday Funday with Howie Mandel. Photo courtesy of Howie Mandel
Howie Mandel has remained a constant force in show business for more than 30 years. He can currently be seen on NBC’s flagship series America’s Got Talent, where he has served as a judge for 11 seasons. He recently finished production on his new documentary, Howie Mandel: But Enough About Me. But let’s keep it real here: Bobby’s World was the greatest thing dude has ever done. If you have kids and haven’t introduced them to one of the best cartoons of the ‘90s, go on YouTube and watch the little ones fall in love with Lil’ Bobby. 7:30 pm.
After more than 25 years making his own musical mark, A.J. Croce began performing some of the songs of his dad, Jim Croce, live and forming a special show out of it. This concert will celebrate two of his father's legendary albums, 1973’s Life and Times and his final release I Got A Name, in addition to songs from You Don’t Mess Around With Jim. You know he’ll be doing such classics as “Time in a Bottle” and “Operator (That’s Not the Way It Feels).” But let’s hope he also hits us with a rendition of our favorite Croce song, “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown.” 8 pm.