With a long Memorial Day weekend coming up, it’s a good time to consider your plans for the next few days, especially if you’re on a budget. This week, chili and country music await you in Tomball, comedy dominates in the East End and Midtown, and a couple of authors swing by our local bookstores to convince you it’s their book you’ll be toting to the beach this summer. 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.
Conversations @ The Center: Adela Andea and Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola
Galveston Arts Center
6:30 p.m. Thursday, free
GAC’s “Intersections: Art, Science and Technology” season comes to an end with conversations with two Houston-based artists, Adela Andea and Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola. Andea will discuss the juxtaposition of nature and technology in her large-scale light installations in her presentation, Within the medium light, and Gimenez-Zapiola will explore the relationship viewers have with time and space as seen through his interdisciplinary work, which utilizes photography, video projections, text and computers in My Way Of Seeing + Merging the Analog With the Digital. Come ready to ask questions; the informal lectures will include slideshows and a question-and-answer portion to follow.
The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir book signing
Murder By The Book
6:30 p.m. Thursday, free
Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich’s debut is part true crime, part memoir, a recounting of the visceral reaction her 25-year-old law student self had to confessed murderer Ricky Langley. The book follows her ten-year deep dive into not only the 1992 case – 30,000 pages of court transcripts and newspaper coverage, multiple trips to Louisiana, and hours of footage – but also her past, to reveal why this staunchly anti-death-penalty intern so desperately wanted Langley to die. Already drawing comparisons to Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood, the book has made must-read lists in Entertainment Weekly, Buzzfeed and the Huffington Post for good reason.
14 Pews Film Academy: A Collection of Art Films
7 p.m. Friday, $10
The three Cressandra Thibodeaux-directed films on the program exemplify the 14 Pews Film Academy mission: to make films about Houston artists, particularly those underrepresented. Art & Activism centers on the relationship between artivists William Loyd and his transgender wife, Nikki Araguz-Loyd, as he attempts to create art while together they struggle for the right to be married. Thibodeaux takes a look at the influence of an iconic local artist in Nestor Topchy: Houston’s Phoenix, and follows art advocate Victoria Lightman in Houston Art Collectors, while also profiling artists like Dixie Friend Gay, Patrick Turk and Neva Mikulicz.
Kiss Alike – A Tribute to Kiss
9 p.m. Friday, $10
Why shell out a hundred bucks to see Kiss when you can go down to Scout Bar to see Kiss Alike, Houston’s premier Kiss tribute band – also chosen one of our top ten tribute bands in 2016 – for a fraction of the cost? Overrated or not, the contagious joy that spreads through a room when everyone’s collectively lifted in song, shouting at the top of their lungs that they want to “Rock and Roll All Nite” – and party ev-er-y day – cannot be denied. Joining the band will be Tame Fury and Let It Rock – A Bon Jovi Tribute to fulfill all your “Livin’ On a Prayer” needs.
Honky Tonk Chili Challenge
Tomball Railroad Depot
11 a.m. Saturday, free
Fresh off the Rails & Tails Mudbug Festival, get ready to make the drive back to Tomball for the Honky Tonk Chili Challenge. Tony Booth, Doug Boggs, Liz Talley and Amber Digby & Midnight Flyer will supply the tunes, while chili masters from across southeast Texas compete for a spot at the Chili Appreciation Society International Championship in November. K-Star Country 99.7 will be on hand to host a Texas two-step contest (winners receive a weekend at Moody Gardens on Galveston Island), and there will also be a margarita “pour-off,” food and merchandise vendors, and a kids’ zone.
The Probably a Show, Show!
10 p.m. Saturday, $10
The Probably a Show, Show! returns to Rec Room for another late-night, Saturday Night Live-style installment. The monthly sketch comedy show, created by Britt Vasicek, features a team of funny people – Radu Bondar, Katie McGee and Mairead Dickenson – and special guests dedicated to making you laugh through a combination of pre-written sketches, musical comedy and stand-up. Even better, if you’re funny and you like what you see, you can go home and submit some of your own ideas to Vasicek. You just might get picked to participate in next month’s show.
Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
5 p.m. Sunday, $9
In reflecting on the six-decade marriage and creative partnership between Harold and Lillian Michelson, it might be easier to list the movies they didn’t have a hand in. Between the two of them, the storyboard artist and the film researcher have credits on Spartacus, The Birds, The Graduate, Fiddler on the Roof, Rosemary’s Baby, Scarface and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? – to name a few. Director Daniel Raim’s documentary, Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story, is a gentle portrait of the Michelsons perfect for a Sunday (but if you can’t make it, it also screens on May 26 and May 27 too).
Trash Flavored Trash: Trashed Stand Up For Trash People
The Secret Group
10 p.m. Tuesday, free
The newest addition to The Secret Group’s weekly calendar, Trash Flavored Trash: Trashed Stand Up For Trash People, hosted by Andrew Youngblood and Zahid Dewji, will showcase Houston’s best stand-up comics, with special guests along the way. Every show will be different, but Dewji promises it will be even crazier than when Ocean Spray combined cranberries and raisins to create craisins. If the craisin analogy doesn’t get you, well drinks are only $1 starting at 10 p.m., with drink and ticket giveaways scattered throughout the night. Needless to say, this one is 21 and up only.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Avenida Party on the Plaza: Nick Gaitan with Nico Diaz
5 p.m. Wednesday, free
The Gulf Coast sound is alive and well and rockin’ the Avenida Plaza on Wednesday when Nick Gaitan and his four-man ensemble, The Umbrella Man, take the stage. Their Houston-centric musical gumbo of country, zydeco, Tejano and rockabilly will cap an evening that starts at 5 p.m. with $4 craft beers and games and giveaways from KRBE 104.1 personalities until 6 p.m. when DJ Baby Roo (a 2017 Houston Press MasterMind winner) takes over. At 7 p.m. Nico Diaz shows off his jazz-rock nueva trova – a progressive, folksy style – before Gaitan closes the show at 8 p.m.
Touch book signing
7 p.m. Wednesday, free
Sloane Jacobsen, the protagonist of Courtney Maum’s new book Touch, the follow-up to her critically acclaimed 2014 novel I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You, is a trend forecaster with a problem – her latest prediction is a return to “in-personism,” which puts her at odds with not only her tech giant bosses but her life partner. Maum, herself a former trend forecaster, will stop by Brazos for a conversation with Alyson Ward, books editor at the Houston Chronicle, about the book that Library Journal says “perfectly captures the zeitgeist of our era as technology battles with humanity.”