Event organizers must figure that a lot of people are heading out of town for Labor Day weekend, as this slate of new events is one of the lightest of the year. But there are still fun things to do, including a mini movie festival at the Modern, a music and food festival in Bedford, and a great start to the college football season.
Below are the best options for your precious free time Thursday through Sunday. Don't like what you see? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, September 1
The Modern presents the Art of Espionage
There's nothing quite like a good spy movie, and this weekend the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth is showcasing a bunch of them. Among the films being screened are Hitchcock's Foreign Correspondent, The Ipcress File with Michael Caine, Academy Award-winner The Lives of Others, and Munich from Steven Spielberg. The series is comprised of eight films showing Thursday through Sunday.
Amphibian Stage Productions presents Baron Vaughn
The breakout star of the popular Netflix series Grace and Frankie, Baron Vaughn brings his absurdist take on such subjects as race, relationships, Cocoa Puffs, and credit scores to Amphibian Stage Productions for a one-week residency to work on new material. You can help Vaughn craft his next comedy special at his performances through Saturday.
Friday, September 2
First Fridays at the Modern
Since it's the first Friday of the month, that means it's time for another First Fridays at the Modern. The George McCullough Jazz Trio puts on a live performance, and guests can partake in a special cocktail called, appropriately for this weekend, Touchdown. A docent-led, 20-minute tour of the galleries is available at 6:30 pm.
Bedford Blues & BBQ Festival
The Bedford Blues & BBQ Festival, taking place through Monday at the Bedford City Hall Complex, features headliners Dr. John, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, and others playing on two stages. Amateur chefs from around the area are also showing off their best recipes for chicken and ribs, competing for cash and the King of the Backyard trophy.
Saturday, September 3
Advocare Classic: USC vs. Alabama
Even though TCU has been a threat to make the National Championship game for many years, the first big local college football game of the season is between the defending national champion Alabama Crimson Tide and perennial power USC Trojans. Both teams are ranked in the preseason top 20, so prepare for a gridiron battle at AT&T Stadium.
Lee Brice in concert
Before Lee Brice started putting out No. 1 albums like 2014's I Don't Dance, he made his name writing hit songs for other stars like Jason Aldean, Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, and Blake Shelton. He's doing just fine writing for himself now, scoring with hits like "Hard to Love," "I Don't Dance," and "Drinking Class." He's playing at Billy Bob's Texas.
Sunday, September 4
Texas Rangers Labor Day Weekend Race
The Texas Rangers are in first place in the American League West, and you can bask in their feel-good season by participating in the Texas Rangers Labor Day Weekend Race. The 5K race takes a scenic route through Arlington's entertainment district and finishes on the field at Globe Life Park. There's also be a family-friendly 1K for anyone looking for a shorter run. As a bonus, all participants get a ticket and parking for the Rangers/Astros game later that day.
Panther Island Pavilion presents Sunday Funday
Well, this is it: The final Sunday Funday of the summer. Labor Day weekend means it's finally time to admit that summer is over, but you can have one last hurrah at this event, which, as always, features tubes, tunes, watersports, food, and brews on hopefully a spectacularly sunny Sunday afternoon at Panther Island Pavilion.