Home of the tacos and land of the salsa. It's Tacolandia and it's back this year with a lineup that plans to give last year's a run for its money. Pick from delicious knockouts like Fadi's Mediterranean Gerardo's and Luna y Sol, and no judgment if you go back for seconds. Just remember to submit your vote for tastiest taco before the end of the night. Keep reading for more of this weekend's best bets.
Calaveras Rendezvous at MECA
Friday, 7 p.m.
Mexican printmaker and cartoonist José Guadalupe Posada probably had no idea his satirical La Calavera Catrina, a well-dressed lady skeleton etched in the early 1900s, would one day become a staple of Dia de los Muertos iconography – or that it would inspire fashion shows. This celebratory, 21-and-up-only fundraiser will feature music from DJ Boricua Soul; dance performances from Stacey Allen and MECA Ballet Folklórico; and art from Luis Gavito, Bobby Ramos and Michael Martin. It will also benefit MECA (which suffered damages during Hurricane Harvey) and their arts and social service programs. For information, call 713-802-9370 or visit meca-houston.org. $20.
The Love for Three Oranges Opera at Moores Opera House
Friday, 7:30 p.m.
I-45 at Cullen
Once upon a time there lived a prince, cursed to walk the earth in search of three oranges, each containing a princess. Though warned not to open the oranges unless near water — of course — the prince finds them in a desert. Buck Ross, director of the Moores Opera Center at the University of Houston main campus, says Sergei Prokofiev’s The Love for Three Oranges, based on a Carlo Gozzi commedia dell’arte piece, is one of the center’s most popular shows for good reason. “If you think about a big Cirque du Soleil show, it’s more like that — just no acrobats,” says Ross. “It’s just really big and splashy and colorful, [but] I think we’ll give away too many surprises if we tell you much more than that!” For information, call 713-743-3388 or visit uh.edu/cota/music/opera. $12 to $20.
Sender at Rec Room
Friday, 8 p.m.
Your friend hasn’t tweeted, liked or updated his status in a year; that means he’s dead, right? Or so goes the plot of Ike Holter’s ecroomarts.org. $15 to $35., making its regional premiere at Rec Room. Director Josh Morrison describes Holter’s language as phenomenal. “One of the friends disappeared under unknown circumstances. The idea is he had passed away, died, but there was no confirmation, no finding of his body. All of a sudden he pops back up.” Morrison is quick to point out that, in spite of its ethereal heaviness, it’s still a comedy, still plenty of fun to be seen. Expect a bit of nudity, some profanity, and plenty to think about on the way home. For information, call 713-344-1291 or visit r
OktoberPest at Houston Museum of Natural Science
Saturday, 11 a.m.
5555 Hermann Park
No, this isn’t some disgusting challenge where if you don’t eat the bugs you’ll be voted off the island. Better than reality TV, OktoberPest returns to the Houston Museum of Natural Science with a monarch butterfly release and a bug-petting zoo, but we’re all aflutter over the gourmet insect cooking demo. According to Food & Wine, queen-ant eggs make for a great tostada, crickets and mealworms go well with both ramen noodles and a hearty grasshopper burger, and — right here in Houston — Xochi has been known to serve ant mole and gusano (worm) salt. Come dressed as an insect, beekeeper or bug-related character for free tix to the Cockrell Butterfly Center on your next visit. For information, call 713-639-4629 or visit hmns.org. Free to $25.
Tacolandia at The Water Works - Buffalo Bayou Park
Saturday, 4 p.m.
Yankees might not get it, but here in Texas it seems natural to spend an afternoon in celebration of taco joy. This Saturday we’re doing just that when the Houston Press presents tacolandiahouston.com $25 to $65., where we careen from booth to booth in search of the perfect taco while luchadores, mariachi and a gigantic Tabasco inflatable keep the theme going. VIP ticket-holders get in at 3 p.m., which means an extra hour of taco love. For information, call 877-987-6487 or visit
La traviata at Houston Grand Opera
Sunday, 2 p.m.
Resilience Hall, George R. Brown Convention Center
1001 Avenida De Las Americas
It was a complete failure when it first opened in Venice in 1853. By several accounts, audience members didn’t think the lead singer was suited for the role of the consumptive Violetta and weren’t too fond of some of the other singers’ performances. It was revised and taken to other cities, and the fortunes of houstongrandopera.org. $18 to $269.50.(“The Fallen Woman”) did a complete 180, although some still questioned its morality. Verdi’s now-classic story of the courtesan Violetta, who falls in love with Alfredo but gives him up when his father demands it, has it all: love, devotion and bad choices galore. Reminder: HGO has moved to the GRB because of Hurricane Harvey damage to the Wortham. For information, call 713-228-6737 or visit
Amberfest at Under the Radar Brewery
Amber alerts normally carry with them the negative connotation that someone somewhere has gone missing and needs our help being found. This Sunday though a different sort of amber is being celebrated. It's the color of the beer with a purpose served up by Under the Radar Brewery. All proceeds of the event will go directly to the Texas Center for the Missing to help them carry on with their mission. A family friendly event as well, bring the kids and children under 12 get in free. For information, call 832-512-0237 or visit facebook.com/events/343387185997428. Free to $30.
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Annual Dog Costume Contest at Axelrad
What's more fun than putting your dog in a costume he or she can't wait to chew? We'll wait. Add to that the patio of Axelrad and the pizza from Luigi's? Can't quite top that can you? The Annual Dog Costume Contest at Axelrad is here and we're sure it's the event your pooch has been looking forward to since last year's crowd pleasing turnout. Register online and expect the competition to be wild. For information, call 713-597-8800 or visit the event's facebook page. Free.
Margaret Downing, Natalie de la Garza and Susie Tommaney contributed to this post.