Texas Travel

September Events: Long-Weekend Road Trips

By Abi Grise 8.29.18

Come on, you can squeeze in one last weekend trip before saying goodbye to this summer forever. Here’s where to start.

North Texas

Texas-Oklahoma Fair, Sept. 11–15, Wichita Falls

Come together with Texas’ northern neighbors. The Texas-Oklahoma Fair boasts livestock shows each evening and all day Saturday, crafts and home skills competitions, and thrilling carnival games and rides. Tap your foot and do-si-do to music on the Midway Stage outdoors and the Exhibit Hall indoors.

Adult admission is $7. Children’s admission (under 12) is $3.

Trinity River Kite Festival, Sept. 22, Dallas

Prepare to be blown away by this outdoor festival. It promises an “extravaganza of wind, wings, and action!” Find a spot to relax in the grass alongside the Trinity River to watch kites of all varieties soar. Get wild with sponsors like the Dallas Zoo Outreach, Trinity River Audubon Center, Dallas Discovery Gardens, and The Great Seed Bomb.

Central Texas

World Championship BBQ Goat Cook-Off, Aug. 31–Sept. 2, Brady

Bring the kids to the self-proclaimed “Heart of Texas” for the one and only 45th annual World Championship BBQ Goat Cook-Off. Held annually on Labor Day weekend in Richards Park, the event features 206 competitive cooking teams, live music, kids games (human kids, not goat kids), and plenty of crafts and food vendors.

Pro tip: Purchase tickets in advance for only $5.

Texas Arts and Crafts Fair, Sept. 29–30, Ingram

Feed your creative spirit with the sights and sounds of Texas’ favorite homegrown visual and music artists. Browse the treasures of more than 150 Lone Star artists and get a taste of gourmet food and craft brews. There will be live demonstrations and activities for artists of all ages and disciplines. Proceeds go to the Hill Country Arts Foundation.

Adult tickets are $8. Student tickets are $5. Children under 12 are free.

East Texas

Arts in the Park Featuring Shakespeare in the Park, Sept. 22, The Woodlands

Bring a blanket, friends, and family to Rob Fleming Park for a delightful evening of classical music played by The Woodlands Symphony Orchestra, followed by a live Shakespeare play at dusk. Grab a snack at the food trucks, browse local artists’ booths, and let the kids explore fun, hands-on activities. The greatest part? Like the best things in life, it’s free.

Galveston Island Shrimp Festival, Sept. 28–29, Galveston

Put your shrimp cooking (or tasting) skills to the test at the Galveston Island Shrimp Festival. Start your day scuttling through the 5K run. Cheer on your favorite crustaceans during the Galveston Shrimp Company’s Lil’ Shrimps Parade. Last but not least, taste-test shrimp from amateur and professional vendors, or judge Texas’ finest Creole fare in the Gumbo Stroll for only $12.

South Texas

30th Anniversary HummerBird Celebration, Sept. 13–16, Rockport-Fulton

If birding makes your heart flutter, this is the event for you. Join wildlife experts for an educational celebration of the ruby-throated hummingbird’s annual fall migration to Rockport-Fulton. Ruby-throated hummingbirds have been the focus of many South Texas bird watchers since Connie Hagar’s documentation of the species in 1938.

Jazz’SALive, Sept. 21–22, San Antonio

Get jazzed for a night of performances from award-winning national, regional, and local musicians at the historic, newly renovated Travis Park. Enjoy a diverse range of jazz styles, sample bites and sips from local vendors, and take in the fresh air from your lawn chair or blanket on the grass.

West Texas

Marfa Lights Festival, Aug. 31–Sept. 2, Marfa

You haven’t fully experienced West Texas until you’ve seen the mystical Marfa lights. Some say the flares along the horizon are will-o’-the-wisps. Some say they’re atmospheric reflections. This Labor Day, why not see for yourself? Also enjoy a parade, live music and street dances, food and crafts vendors, and the kind of desert magic only Marfa can make.

Tri-State Fair & Rodeo, Sept. 14–22, Amarillo

The Panhandle sees more than 130,000 visitors every year who come for this monolithic event celebrating Texas’ agricultural industry. More than 600 local volunteers organize the livestock and entertainment. We suggest rolling into the pumpkin patch for gourd-eous selfies, then moo-ving over to the milking demonstrations, and, of course, the Texas Farm Bureau educational exhibits.

Pro tip: Adult tickets are $10 at the door, but only $5 at area Walgreens mid-August to opening day. Tickets for children ages 6 to 12 are $5.

When you’re finally ready to leave summer behind, make sure you’re on top of these home maintenance tune-ups for fall.

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