Day Trips & Beyond: August Events Roundup

Houston Restaurant Weeks, Perseid Meteor Shower, and more

August is heating up with lots of exciting things to do.

Blues singer Mance Lipscomb spent most of his life as a tenant farmer in Grimes County until he passed away in 1976. On weekends he would play the clubs around Houston when he was "discovered" in the Sixties. Navasota honored the legendary Texas bluesman with a statue in 2011 and an annual music festival since 1995. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

The Navasota Blues Fest brings established musicians and rising stars to “The Blues Capital of Texas.” This year’s two-day festival brings Rob Roy Parnell, Trudy Lynn, Bernie Pearl & Mike Barry, the Chris Beard Band, and a list of other performers to the Grimes County Expo Center. Along with great music there will be workshops and local food. Funds raised by the festival go to the Mance Lipscomb Scholarship Fund for local aspiring musicians and students.

Aug. 12-13, Navasota, www.navasotabluesfest.org

Travel Notes:

Houston Restaurant Weeks continues through the month of August as the largest fundraiser of the year for the Houston Food Bank. Select from the more than 200 participating restaurants, go to the restaurant’s website to confirm times, make a reservation, and ask for the “HRW Menu.” (Some restaurants will accept walk-ins.) A portion of your bill will go to provide almost 23 million meals to Houstonians who are food insecure.

Through Sept. 5, Houston, www.houstonrestaurantweeks.com

The Perseid Meteor Shower is predicted to be extremely active this year with the peak light show on the second weekend of August as the planet Earth crosses the path of the comet Swift-Tuttle. Watch for streaks across the sky especially right before dawn, but the best is expected on Saturday and Sunday mornings. There will be special late-night hikes at Enchanted Rock State Park, a Night Sky Party at Inks Lake State Park, and other events on the meteor shower weekend.

Aug. 11-14, everywhere, www.earthsky.org

Annual Meeting of the John Wesley Hardin “Secret Society” gathers at the gunfighter’s gravesite in El Paso’s Concordia Cemetery to reenact his last day. When sentenced to 25 years at Huntsville prison, Hardin claimed to have killed 42 men. On Aug. 19, 1895, Hardin was shot in the back by Constable John Selman in the Acme Saloon. Every year the El Paso group stages the reenactment along with ghost tours of the city’s oldest cemetery.

Aug. 20, El Paso, www.concordiacemetery.org

Free admission to all 412 national parks from Aug. 25-28 to celebrate the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary. www.nps.gov

Road closure on TX-6 north of Cisco has travelers looking for alternative routes to Albany. On June 2, high water from Lake Cisco washed out a 255-foot span of the bridge over Sandy Creek. The Texas Department of Transportation anticipates the new bridge will be completed by December 2016.

Other August Events:

Texas Outdoor Musical
Aug. 10-20, Palo Duro Canyon State Park, Canyon, www.texas-show.com

"Out of This World" UFO Festival
Aug. 12-13, Edinburg, www.edinburgarts.com

Big Bend Nature Fest
Aug. 25-27, Big Bend National Park, www.bigbendnaturefest.com

Hotter’N Hell 100 Bike Race
Aug. 26-28, Wichita Falls, www.hh100.org

Pearland Wine and Food Festival
Aug. 27, Pearland, www.visitpearland.com

Margarita and Salsa Festival
Aug. 27, Waco, www.extracoeventscenter.com

CAF High Sky Wing AIRSHO
Aug. 27-28, Midland, www.airsho.org


Gerald McLeod has been traveling around Texas and beyond for his "Day Trips" column for the past 24 years. Keep up to date with his journeys on his archive page. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 40312, South Austin, TX 78704.

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