Ten Things to Do in Houston for $10 or Less (Six Free), May 11-17

Known for turning Nikki Sinamon of Revolve Pole Studio into a Stormtrooper, Houston body painter Rudy Campos (Rcc Creations) will demonstrate the "camouflage effect" Tuesday at Discovery Green.
Known for turning Nikki Sinamon of Revolve Pole Studio into a Stormtrooper, Houston body painter Rudy Campos (Rcc Creations) will demonstrate the "camouflage effect" Tuesday at Discovery Green.
Photo by July St. Juniper

It's an eclectic week in Houston, with the emotions ranging from cute and colorful (costumed pups at Historic Market Square Park and amazing body painting by Rudy Campos) to dark and grim (the sobering stats of the refugee crisis and a new flick about serial killers). It's also a time for milestones, with Booker•Lowe Gallery celebrating 15 years in our community and the 30th anny for the General Sam Houston fest (go Texas). None of these offerings will break the bank, including three performances of Stanton Welch's signature piece, Madame Butterfly. Keep reading for ten of our favorite events that won't cost you more than $10 — and six of them are free! Check out the Houston Press calendar for even more things to do.

FotoFest's "REFUGEE" installation features this father's celebration of his family's safe passage to Lesbos, Greece, among many other images.
FotoFest's "REFUGEE" installation features this father's celebration of his family's safe passage to Lesbos, Greece, among many other images.
© Photo by Tom Stoddart

Annenberg Space for Photography's "REFUGEE"
Silver Street Studios
6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, free

As countries around the world grapple with the "problem" of refugees, it's time to dig deeper and look at the who and why of this global phenomenon. Every day, tens of thousands of people make the decision to flee their homes to escape violence or prosecution, risking harm, capture or even death. The global crisis is far-reaching; one out of every 122 people is a refugee, and the numbers of those displaced now exceed 65 million. FotoFest International plays host to a new exhibit by The Annenberg Space for Photography, with dramatic images from acclaimed photographers Linsey Addario, Omar Victor Diop, Graciela Iturbide, Martin Schoeller and Tom Stoddart, with additional images from international contributors. For those who can't make the opening reception, the exhibit can be viewed Wednesdays through Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., through July 15.

CAMH's series presents works by ambient-, drone- and noise-based musicians.
CAMH's series presents works by ambient-, drone- and noise-based musicians.
Photo by Amber Pozo

Performance: Texas Noise and Ambience
Contemporary Arts Museum Houston
6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, free

Anything and everything ends up in the compositions by Illicit Relationship (Carol Sandin Cooley and Austin Cooley). She's spent years in the local experimental and underground music scene (Poor Dumb Bastards, Glass Snake Lizards), while he has hosted Genetic Memory, KTRU's sound-oddity showcase, for the past 24 years. The first 50 visitors get swag: a CD with a song from Illicit Relationship, as well as featured headliners Lily Taylor (The Ride), James Templeton (aka LIMB), Raceway's Bryan Porter and Carlos Pozo, Splendid Emblem's Collin Hedrick and Jason Fields, and experimentalist Tanner Garza.

Stanton Welch's signature production, Madame Butterfly, comes to the hill.
Stanton Welch's signature production, Madame Butterfly, comes to the hill.
Photo by Amitava Sarkar

Madame Butterfly
Miller Outdoor Theatre
8 p.m. Friday, Saturday, Sunday, free

Choreographer (and artistic director of the Houston Ballet) Stanton Welch's signature piece, Madame Butterfly, has been performed around the world since its 1995 premiere, and now it's coming to the hill courtesy of Houston Ballet and Miller Outdoor Theatre. View this timeless love story, set in mysterious 19th-century Japan, about the beautiful geisha Cio-Cio San, who gives up everything to marry the handsome American naval officer. Don't miss the ravishing wedding night pas de deux at the end of the first act. The evening also includes a performance of Welch's Son of Chamber Symphony.

Cain Island volunteers will demonstrate rifles of the 1800s.
Cain Island volunteers will demonstrate rifles of the 1800s.
Photo by Casey Roon

30th Annual General Sam Houston Folk Festival
Sam Houston Memorial Museum and Homestead, Huntsville
9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, free to $5
10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, free to $5
Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, free to $5

It's a tip of the Texian's hat to Sam Houston; were it not for the general's incredible victory at the Battle of San Jacinto, Texas independence might not have been secured. So let's celebrate the Lone Star State's historic past with re-enactors in full costume and regalia (look for famous scout Deaf Smith), cultural exhibits, Sahawe Indian dancers and retro demonstrations about rustic life on the frontier: cannon and rifle fire, blacksmithing, glass-blowing and woodworking. Be sure to step out of the way during the 18th Texas State Knife & Tomahawk Champion; you never know when a thrower might miss his mark. That's hosted on Saturday and Sunday by world champion Chris Miller and his wife, Sarah; plus there's a knife and whip show over on the main stage.

Puppies for Breakfast is one of the largest outdoor dog festivals in the country.EXPAND
Puppies for Breakfast is one of the largest outdoor dog festivals in the country.
Photo by Ray Kuglar

Puppies for Breakfast
Historic Market Square Park
10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, free

We can assure you, no animals are harmed during the making of this outdoor dog festival. Organizer Hector Garcia, along with Neue Creative and Modular Dog, celebrates man's best friend with adoptable pups, rescue groups, vendors and doggy costume contests. Plus, the smallest dog competition is cuteness on crack; everybody will break a smile when Garcia holds up the itty-bitty victor. Try your chance at the piñata (it's Duke, from The Secret Life of Pets), jam to live music and nosh on yummies from Niko Niko's and local food trucks.



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