With Thanksgiving just around the bend, holiday events are kicking into high gear all around Fort Worth. Four of the 10 events this week are themed around the season, with other events including a Tony-winning musical, extra chances to see a great movie and family opera, the return of a music legend, airplane racing, and a festival focusing on tacos.
Below are the best ways to spend your free time this weekend. Want more options? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, November 15
Avant Chamber Ballet presents Nutcracker: Short and Suite
Avant Chamber Ballet presents the one-act Nutcracker: Short and Suite, as well as the world premiere of Katie Cooper’s Winter from Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons. The production is a family-friendly one-hour performance with the professional cast of dancers from ACB, Cezanne String Quartet, plus new costumes and choreography. The performance will be at White's Chapel United Methodist Church in Southlake.
Broadway at the Bass: Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella
Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella is the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical that puts a contemporary take on the classic tale. This lush production features an incredible orchestra, jaw-dropping transformations, and all the moments you love — the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball, and more — plus some surprising new twists. It will play six times through Sunday at Bass Performance Hall.
Friday, November 16
Trinity River Vision Authority presents Panther Island Ice
This holiday season, the return of Panther Island Ice will up the cool factor in Fort Worth. Located at Coyote Drive-In, Fort Worth's only outdoor skating rink brings a winter wonderland of fun and excitement beginning on Friday. You'll have plenty of time to get some skating in, as the ice rink will operate seven days a week, including all holidays, through January 14.
Magnolia at the Modern presents Colette
This is the rare second weekend of showings for Colette at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. A successful Parisian writer, Willy (Dominic West), convinces Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette (Keira Knightley) to ghostwrite for him. Colette's fight over creative ownership defies gender roles and drives her to overcome societal constraints, revolutionizing literature, fashion, and sexual expression. The film will screen seven more times through Sunday.
Fort Worth Opera presents Hansel and Gretel
Also moving into a second weekend is Fort Worth Opera's production of Engelbert Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel. The fully staged, 60-minute, pop-up production of the enchanting fairytale opera explores the perils of growing up and reminds children of all ages to beware the witchy woods and never judge a book by its candy-coated cover. The performance on Friday will be at Arlington Music Hall, and the performance on Saturday will be at Fort Worth Botanic Garden.
Willie Nelson & Family in concert
At 85 years old, Willie Nelson maintains a schedule of someone half his age. Not only does he have dates set for all over the country in the coming months, but he's also released two new albums — Last Man Standing and My Way — in 2018 alone. You can't keep this country music legend down, and he'll show why in two shows — one Friday and one Saturday — at Billy Bob's Texas.
Saturday, November 17
Red Bull Air Race World Championship
The Red Bull Air Race will have its 2018 season finale and crown a world champion at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. It is the final stop of an international series of air races in which pilots navigate race planes through a low-level slalom track competing for the fastest time. There will be two full days of competition on Saturday and Sunday.
Texas Taco Festival
The first-ever Texas Taco Festival will take place at Texas Live in Arlington. The festival will feature some of the area's best restaurants, food purveyors, food trucks, and bars dishing out a variety of delicious Mexican food and drink. The festival, taking place on Saturday and Sunday, will also include a Chili Pepper Eating Contest, a Best Dressed Contest, carnival games, kids zone, mechanical bull riding, live entertainment with DJs and mariachi bands and a Giant Nacho Bar.
Sundance Square Christmas Tree Lighting
Sundance Square will present its annual Christmas Tree Lighting, with activities including Santa Claus meeting families from 11 am-9 pm, stores open for holiday shopping, and restaurants offering holiday menus. Visitors can enter a virtual line while waiting to see Santa Claus. Upon arriving in Sundance Square, guests can simply send a text to check in at Santa’s Sleigh, allowing them to shop, eat, and relax until it’s time to meet Santa Claus. Proceeds from photos with Santa Claus benefit the Fort Worth Sister Cities’ Youth Program.
Sunday, November 18
GM Financial Parade of Lights
The theme for this year's Parade of Lights, “Through the Eyes of a Child!,” pays tribute to Cook Children’s Medical Center’s 100th birthday celebration, and special families and children from Cook Children’s will be the 2018 parade grand marshals. The parade features more than 100 floats, antique cars, marching bands, horse-drawn carriages, carolers, and Santa and Mrs. Claus traveling through downtown Fort Worth.