Day Trips & Beyond: October Events Roundup

The weather’s ideal to learn about Bob Dylan or see hot air balloons

Dylan wrote lyrics in notebooks, napkins, and used this Royal-brand typewriter in the early years. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

Is it rolling Bob? On May 10, 2022, the Bob Dylan Center in Tulsa, OK, opened. Fourteen days before his 81st birthday. Dylan wasn’t in attendance, yet he was everywhere.

The museum is a mix of videos, photographs, timelines, posters, and memorabilia that show another side of Dylan. Even long-time fans will come away inspired and informed. The uninitiated will discover a man who contributed six decades of creativity to the music world.

The young man at the front desk said they sell far more $10 seniors’ tickets than the $12 general admission tickets. I did hear one old-timer say as he read one of the museum boards, “I didn’t know Dylan wrote that song.”

In the main gallery of the two-story museum, a small, light green typewriter sits on a pedestal glowing under a spotlight in the dimly lit cavernous room filled with signs and video monitors telling the step-by-step progression of Dylan’s career. It’s like walking through a coffee table book. As a longtime fan, not much was new to me, but the videos scattered throughout were like bits of filmed memories.

Hero worship is not what the Dylan Center is about. When you see Dylan as the man he is instead of the pop star on stage, you come away with an appreciation for his talent and genius. Two of my favorite things in the museum were a video of a young Dylan in the studio recording “Girl From the North Country,” and a video of a grizzled Dylan as a lounge act with a three-piece band. Bookends of a career that has given us so much.

His music says it all and that should be enough. It was thrilling to walk through a biography of Dylan’s life and career. The real story is in his songs and what they meant to you.

Tulsa is about a 7-hour drive from Austin. The wonderful Woody Guthrie Center is next door to the Dylan Center. A few blocks away is the Greenwood District, site of the 1921 massacre of Black residents (try the fried chicken at Wanda J’s Next Generation Restaurant). Across town, Leon Russell’s Church Studio offers tours.

Bob Dylan Center, Wed.-Sun. 10am-6pm, 116 E. Reconciliation Way, Tulsa, OK, 918/392-3483,

This year’s 50th anniversary International Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque, NM, is expecting more than 500 balloons including over 100 special shape balloons. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

Up, up, and away. It’s time once again for the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, one of the largest and most spectacular displays of flying object in the world. What started as TV station promotion 50 years ago with 13 hot air balloons has grown to welcome more than 500 balloons from around the world.

During the first nine days of October the skies around central New Mexico are filled with the colorful and sometimes whimsically shaped balloons. The two prime times for balloon watching are the Mass Ascensions in the early morning and late evening Balloon Glows. In between are activities at the fairgrounds and time to explore the area.

Oct. 1-9, Albuquerque International Hot Balloon Fiesta, Albuquerque, NM,

Travel Notes

Queen of Tejano. Through Oct. 15, the Wittliff Collections at Texas State University in San Marcos will display a sort of afrenda to Selena Quintanilla during Hispanic Heritage Month. The exhibit includes never before seen photos of a teenage Selena in concert in early 1990 by photographer Al Rendon. Even at a young age as the opening act for comedian Paul Rodriguez, Selena exhibits the charisma that propelled her to stardom. Rendon went on to photograph the Corpus Christi native for multiple other projects. The Latina pop star was shot and killed on March 31, 1995, by her friend and former boutique manager.

Black Power. Two charismatic leaders of the Civil Rights movement during the 1960s come together in a new exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The exhibition Gordon Parks: Stokely Carmichael and Black Power will open at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, presenting the five images from Parks’ 1967 Life article, along with nearly 50 additional photographs and contact sheets that have never before been published or exhibited and footage of Carmichael’s speeches and interviews. On view exclusively at the MFAH, Gordon Parks: Stokely Carmichael and Black Power runs Oct. 16, 2022 to Jan. 16, 2023.

A record-high total of 282 loggerhead turtles appeared on the Texas coast between April 1 and August 19, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which is more than double the total strandings in any year from 2012 to 2021. There are five species of sea turtle found in the Gulf of Mexico. Loggerheads are the most abundant species to nest in the United States, although their population has declined, largely due to bycatch from fishing operations. Over the past decade, an average of 109 loggerhead sea turtles have stranded on Texas beaches each year, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Most of this year’s strandings have occurred in Texas’ Coastal Bend between the counties of Calhoun and Kleberg. Scientists think the explanation may lie with changes in the sea turtles’ habitat and access to prey. Stranded sea turtles can be found year-round in bays, passes, the Gulf of Mexico, or along the shoreline. If you find a stranded sea turtle, please report it by flagging down a passing turtle patroller (April through mid-July) or law enforcement officer or call 1-866-TURTLE5.

2022 sizzled. It is official, NOAA announced that the United States sweltered through its third hottest summer on record this year. The hottest summer – in 128 years of record-keeping – was last year, 2021. And the second hottest was the Dust Bowl year of 1936.

Other October Events

Haunted Hues
Oct. 1-Nov. 1, Houston,

Come and Taste It
Oct. 6, Gruene,

Gruene Music & Wine Festival
Oct. 6-9, Gruene,

Big Bend Bluegrass
Oct. 7-8, Alpine,

Texas Mesquite Arts Festival
Oct. 7-8, Fredericksburg,

Oct. 7-9, Cuero,

Port A Live Music Weekend
Oct. 7-9, Port Aransas,

Oct. 7-9, Rockport,

Welcome Home Festival
Oct. 7-16, Kerrville,

Living History Days at Fort Griffin
Oct. 8, Albany,

Remember Goliad Paddling Race and Festival
Oct. 8, Goliad,

Fall Fest
Oct. 8, Lampasas,

Scarecrow Festival
Oct. 8-9, Chappell Hill,

Bayou City Art Festival
Oct. 8-9, Houston,

Garden Tours
Oct. 8, 22, Hempstead,

Love Creek Orchards Pumpkin Patch
Oct. 8-30, Medina,

Texas Renaissance Festival
Oct. 8-Nov. 27, Todd Mission,

Indigenous Peoples Day
Oct. 10, Oklahoma City, OK,

Fall Bird Hikes
Oct. 10, 15, Round Mountain,

Burger Showdown 3.0
Oct. 14, San Antonio,

Utopiafest Down in the Oaks
Oct. 14-15, Burnet,

Bridge City Gumbo Festival
Oct. 14-16, Bridge City, La.,

Fossil Day
Oct. 15, Ladonia,

Star Parties
Oct. 15, Nov. 12, Dec. 17, Round Mountain,

Oct. 15, El Paso,

Grape Day Celebration
Oct. 15, Lubbock,

Historic Ghost Walk
Oct. 15, Orange,

Oct. 15-16, Galveston,

Chalk Festival
Oct. 15-16, Kerrville,

Parker Brothers, Guitar Duo, In Concert
Oct. 16, Fredericksburg,

Come and Taste It
Oct. 20, Gruene,

Hogeye Festival
Oct. 20-22, Elgin,

Fredericksburg Food and Wine Fest
Oct. 20-22, Fredericksburg,

Southern Smoke Festival
Oct. 21-23, Houston,

Island Oktoberfest
Oct. 21-22, Galveston,

Tombstone Trail at Washington-on-the-Brazos
Oct. 21-22, Washington,

Southern Smoke Festival
Oct. 21-23, Houston,

Wooden Boat Festival
Oct. 21-23, Port Aransas,

Night Hikes
Oct. 21, 27, Round Mountain,

Pie Fest
Oct. 22, Cisco,

Water Lantern Festival
Oct. 22, Fort Worth,

Hill Country Indian Artifact Show
Oct. 22, Fredericksburg,

Legends of the Falls
Oct. 22-23, Cottonwood Shores,

Texas Clay Festival
Oct. 22-23, Gruene,

Mountain Bike Festival
Oct. 22-23, Kerrville,

Oct. 22, 23, 29, 30, San Antonio,

Brews n’ Broomsticks Adult Night
Oct. 27, San Antonio,

Texas Fleece and Fiber Festival
Oct. 27-30, Kerrville,

Tasting Texas, Wine + Food Festival
Oct. 27-30, San Antonio,

Fossilmania XL
Oct. 28-30, Glen Rose,

Bison Field Harvest
Oct. 29, Fredericksburg,

Elissa Seaport Social
Oct. 29, Galveston,

Squared Silly
Oct. 29, Lampasas,

Llano River Pumpkin Float
Oct. 29, Llano,

Barktober Fest
Oct. 29, Salado,

Texas Country Reporter
Oct. 29, Waxahachie,

Tablerock Fright Trail
Oct. 29-30, Salado,

Dia de los Muertos
Oct. 29-30, San Antonio,

Texas Butterfly Festival
Oct. 29-Nov. 1, Mission,

Terry Allen’s Tribute to His Friend, Guy Clark
Oct. 30, San Marcos,

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