ATTRACTIONS
Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Visitors can enjoy cultivated gardens, more than 200.000 flowers, and spectacular views of White Rock Lake and downtown, as well as "A Woman’s Garden" and "The Crow Family Texas Wildlife Bronzes." Open daily; 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Mon-Fri; 10 a.m.-6 p.m.. Sat & Sun. 8525 Garland Rd. 214-327-8263. (L-8)
Dallas Aquarium. Experience the peaceful tranquility of watching the underwater world, with 375 marine and freshwater species. And for excitement, there are shark and piranha feedings every day except Monday at 2:30 p.m. Open daily; 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Fair Park. 214-670-8443. (L-8)
Dallas Zoo. Exhibits feature forest, mountain, and river habitats; walk-through aviaries and the Reptile Discovery Center. Monkey around in the new chimpanzee exhibit. Open daily; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 621 E. Clarendon Dr. (Ewing exit off 1-35 E). 214-670-5656. (K-9)
Dallas World Aquarium. This West End, privately owned aquarium of exotic marine life has twelve saltwater tanks and Texas’ largest South African black-footed penguin exhibit. It also happens to be a great place for lunch. Open daily; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 1801 N. Griffin St. 214-720-1801. (L-7)
Fort Worth Botanic Garden. The 110-acre, tree-shaded complex includes a rose garden, conservatory, Japanese gardens, and the Garden Restaurant. Open daily; 8 a.m.-dusk (9 a.m.-6 p.m.. Japanese gardens). 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd.. Fort Worth. 817-871 -7686. ( A-9)
Fort Worth Zoo. In one of the nation’s most acclaimed zoos, over 4,000 exotic and native animals can be seen in exhibits like Flamingo Bay, Raptor Canyon, and Asian Falls, where Sumatran tigers and Malayan bears play around a 40-foot waterfall. Don’t miss the zoo’s latest addition: the meerkat exhibit. Open daily; 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Mon-Fri; 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat & Sun. 1989 Colonial Pkwy,. Fort Worth. 817-871-7050. (A-9)
Movie Studios at Las Colinas. These studios, where scenes from "RoboCop," "Leap of Faith," and "JFK" were filmed, are open for tours and interactive fun, from the nostalgia of The National Museum of Communications to the technology of the Blue Screen F/X Show. Open daily; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 6301 N. O’Connor Blvd., Las Colinas. 972-869-FILM. (H-5)
Old City Park. The Historical Village of Dallas. This outdoor museum, a complete turn-of-the-century village, rests in the shadow of the Dallas skyline. Houses, a church, a school, and a variety of stores were moved from their original locations and restored, so a mosey through the streets offers a glimpse into the life of early North Texans. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Tue-Sat; noon-4p.m., Sun. 1717 Gano St. 214-421-5141. (L-8)
Southfork Ranch. Yes, it’s true: Everybody in Dallas knows J.R., and here’s where they go to meet him. Visit the Ewing Mansion, explore the ranch by tram, and walk through the "Dallas" Museum with memorabilia from the hit TV series and its stars. There’s also a Western-wear store and the Front Porch Cafe. Open daily; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 3700 Hogge Rd., half-mile south of Parker Rd., in Parker. 972-442-7800. (N-1)

DANCE
Lord of the Dance. Michael Flatley brings Irish dance to a new level in his energetic 40-per-son shows. Mocked by some but adored by others, come out and watch a jig or two and decide for yourself. Oct. 13-17, 8:00 p.m. Coca-Cola Starplex, Fair Park. 214-373-8000 or 972-647-5700. (L-8)
Fort Worth Dallas Ballet. Founded in 1961 as Fort Worth Ballet and reorganized as a fully professional ballet company in 1985, the company has gained world-class status for its high-caliber ballet. Oct. 17 & 18 are the season premieres; the program includes "’Prodigal Son," "Raymonds Variations," and "Brahms Waltzes." Productions take place at the JFK Theater in the Fort Worth Tarrant County Convention Center and at the Fair Park Music Hall in Dallas. 817-763-0207. (B-9); (L-8)

FAIRS & FIESTAS
State Fair The annual celebration of the best that Texas has to offer. It’s truly an event, if only for the people-watching. But there’s also livestock, car shows, exhibits, midway games and rides, Big Tex, saltwater taffy, and entertainment galore. Don’t forget a Fletcher’s corny dog. Through Oct. 19. Fair Park, 1300 Robert B. Cullum Blvd. at Grand Ave. 214-565-9931. (L-8)
Fright Fest. Arania, the Black Widow Bride, will preside over the biggest Halloween event around, including tributes to her 13 departed husbands. Thrills and terror at haunted houses will fill your wildest nightmare. Oct. 3-Nov. 2; 6-11 p.m., Fri; 10a.m.-ll p.m., Sat; 10 a.m.-10 p.m.. Sun. Six Flags Over Texas, Arlington. 817-640-8900. (B-5)
Oktoberfest ’97. Join the excitement at the German festival of Fort Worth, complete with bier, bratwurst, and native entertainment. Kids will be amused with the Kinderplatz. a large play area with rides and activities. Oct. 4 & 5; noon-midnight. Sat; noon-7 p.m.. Sun; Tarrant County Convention Center, 1111 Houston St., Fort Worth. 214-887-9878. (B-9)
Texas-OU Weekend. Depending on your love of crowds, be wary this weekend as the annual migration comes to town for the biggest football rivalry around between the Longhorns and the Sooners; too bad neither school is from Dallas. Celebration is citywide, but most of the party seems to find the West End. Oct. 11-13. Call the West End Association for details at 214-720-7107. (K-7)
Neiman Marcus Turns 90. Celebrate Neiman Marcus1 anniversary with "Texas Celebration," exhibits, entertainment, and, of course, exclusive anniversary items to buy, buy, buy. Neiman Marcus has been a Dallas cornerstone since 1907, accounting for more than just the way we look. Through Oct. 12; 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Mon-Wed, Fri & Sat: 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Thu; noon-5 p.m.. Sun. 1618 Main St. 214-573-5778. (L-7)
18th Annual Halloween Wax Museum Haunted House. Witness this unique haunted house, but beware of the finger tapping on your shoulder; it might not be a friend! Oct. 24-31; 10 a.m.-9p.m. Palace of Wax & Ripley’s Believe It or Not!. 1-30 and Beltline Road, Grand Prairie. 972-263-2391. (D-5)

KIDSTUFF
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Run away with Charlie and his grandfather as they take a magical tour through a very unique chocolate factory. Sept. 26-Oct. 1 ; 7:30 p.m., Fri: 1:30 p.m., Sat; 1:30 & 4 p.m.. Sun. El Centro College Theater. Main and Market Streets. 214-978-0110. (K-7)
The Hound of the Baskervilles. Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are sleuthing around to find the truth about a demonic dog. Based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s novel, this play makes mystery solving elementary, my dear. Oct. 17-Nov. 9; 7:30 p.m., Fri; 1:30 and 4:30 p.m., Sat & Sun. The Crescent Theater, 2215 Cedar Springs. 214-978-0110. (K-7)
Dr. I Wonder’s Science Circus. Dr. 1 Wonder is a loony in a lab coat who helps make learning fun. demystifing the complexities of learning in exploring science with a one-ring circus that teaches scientific theory. 5 p.m., Oct. 19. Jewish Community Center of Dallas, 7900 Northaven Rd. 214-739-2737. (K-5)

MUSEUMS & GALLERIES
African American Museum. The museum is hosting its biannual Southwest Black Art exhibition featuring artwork of emerging artists. The exhibition was created as an opportunity for artists to display their work while the Museum continues to build its permanent African American art collection. Through Oct. 31. Noon-5 p.m.,Tue-Fri; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.. Sat; 1 p.m.-5 p.m.. Sun. Fair Park, Grand Avenue entrance. 214-565-9026. (L-8)
Amon Carter Museum. Currently on exhibit is "Charles Sheeler in Doylestown," a study of vernacular Pennsylvania architecture and artifacts in photographs, paintings, and drawings. Through Nov. 2. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Tue-Sat; noon-5 p.m., Sun. 3501 Camp Bowie Blvd. 817-738-1933- (A-9)
Carlyn Galerie. The "Fete Set" is a collection of artistic works for breakfast, lunch, and dinner tables, including glassware, dishes, utensils, napkins, and other accessories. Sept. I2-Oct. 5: 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Mon-Sat; 10a.m.-8 p.m.. Thu; noon-5 p.m., Sun. Preston Center, 6137 Luther Ln. 214-368-2828, (K-6)
The Conspiracy Museum. This museum exposes alleged coverups of the assassinations of presidents Kennedy, Lincoln, and Garfield, Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, as well as the crash of Korean Flight 007. Open daily. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. 110 South Market St. 214-741-3040.(K-8)
Dallas Historical Society. "DHS 75, Our History, Your History" celebrates the 75th anniversary of file society with an exhibit reflecting the history and interests of the Dallas community. The impact of World War II and the Texas Sesquicentennial are two of the topics examined. Through October: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Tue-Sat; 1 -5 p.m.. Sun. Hall of State at Fair Park, First Avenue at Parry. 214-421-4500. (L-8)
Dallas Museum of Art "Searching for Ancient Egypt" is an exhibit focusing on a civilization that has attracted many for hundreds of years, so explore for yourself this fascinating exhibit. Memorable highlights are presented that emphasize and detail this spiritual society, such as a 4,300-year-old funerary chapel and a mummy mask. Through Feb. 1.11 a.m.-4 p.m.. Tue, Wed & Fri; 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Thu; 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat & Sun. 1717 N. Harwood St. 214-922-1200 or 214-922-1355. (K-7)
Edith Baker Gallery. "Absurd Realities," new work by Tom Pribyl and Frank Brown. Through Oct. 17. 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Tue-Sat. 2404 Cedar Springs Rd. 214-855-5101. (K-7)
Florence Art Gallery. Still lifes by Colorado artist Douglas Arneson will be on display with original oils by Henrietta Milan, Claudio Simonetti, and Simbari. bronze sculptures by Harry Marinsky and new serigraphs by various other artists. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Mon-Fri; 11 a.m.-4 p.m.. Sat; and by appointment- 2500 Cedar Springs Rd. at Fairmont Street. 214-754-7070. (K-7)
Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. "ASlave Ship Speaks: The Wreck of the Henrietta Marie" is an interactive exhibition of artifacts, replicas, and reproductions chronicling life on a 18th-cemury transport ship. Oct. 4-Jan. 4; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Mon; 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Tue-Thu, 9 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri & Sat; noon-8 p.m., Sun. 1501 Montgomery St., Fort Worth. 817-732-1631. (A-9)
Ivanffy & Uhler Gallery. Contemporary and 20th-century European paintings, drawings, and sculpture. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.. Tue-Sat; 1-6 p.m., Sun. 4623 Lovers Ln. 214-350-3500. (K-6)
Kimbell Art Museum. "Impressionist and Modern Masterpieces: The Rudolf Staechelin Family Foundation Collection of Basel. Switzerland." Opens Oct. 5. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Tue-Thu & Sal. noon-8 p.m., Fri; noon-5 p.m.. Sun. 3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth. 817-332-8451. (B-9)
5th Annual Jewelry Invitational. This show will feature contemporary glass art and jewelry. Oct. 17-Nov.l2; 5:30-8:30 p.m.. Fri. Oct. 17; 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Mon-Wed, Fri & Sat: 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Thu. Kittrell/Riffkind Art Glass. 5100 Belt Line Rd., Ste. 820. 972-239-7957. (K-4)
La Galerie Royale. French Royale Exhibition moves through French history by examining the art and everyday items used in daily life. Step back in time and live like a king. Call for exact times. Dallas Royal European Art Museum. 3509 Oak Lawn Ave. 214-536-3400. (K-7)
The Science Place. A hands-on children’s discovery center that’s fun for parents too, especially because the museum helps answer all of those "Why?" questions kids seem to interminably come up with. Also home to the IMAX theater and its 79-foot dome screen. Open daily. 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. 1318 Second Ave., Fair Park. 214-428-5555. (L-8)
Sixth Floor Museum. This thorough, intelligent and moving exhibit in the former Texas School Book Depositor)’ explores the life and death of President John F. Kennedy. Particularly haunting is the recreated corner sniper’s nest. Audio tours available. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., daily. Dallas County Administration Building, 411 Elm St, downtown Dallas. 214-653-6666. (K-7)

MUSIC
Farm Aid. The benefit concert lineup includes Willie Nelson. Neil Young, John Mellencamp. Dave Matthews Band, Allman Brothers, and John Fogerty. Oct. 4. Texas Stadium, 2401 Airport Frwy. 214-373-8000 or metro 214-647-5700. (J-6)
Fine Arts Chamber Players. The Fourth Saturday Series will begin a new season featuring Susan Pejovich, harpist with the Dallas Symphony; Mary Karen Clardy, Professor of Flute at the University of North Texas; and Barbara Hustis, a violist with the Dallas Symphony. 3 p.m., Oct. 25, Horchow Auditorium, Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood St. 214-520-2219. (K-8)
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. I : le Fori Worth Symphony Orchestra presents Emanuel Ax in concert as an acclaimed classical guest performing an array of repertoire with the orchestra. Ax will perform by piano against the sounds of the magnificent orchestra. Oct. 25 & 26. 8 p.m., Sat; 2 p.m., Sun. Tarrant County Convention Center, 111] Houston St. 817-926-8831.(B-9)
Dallas Symphony Orchestra. The Dallas Symphony Association presents Johnny Math is in concert. 8 p.m., Oct. 21. Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center. 2301 Flora St. 214-670-36O0.(L-7)
The Virtuoso Series. This series celebrates the twentieth year of the Dallas Classic Guitar Society. In October, the society will present Robert Guthrie. As head of the Guitar Department at SMU, Guthrie has established himself as one of the world’s premier guitarists, traveling and performing in such places as Canada. Mexico. Venezuela. Italy, and Spain. 8 p.m., Oct. 7. Caruth Auditorium at SMU. 214-528-3733. (L-6)
The Mystic and the Macabre. Internationally celebrated pianist Jeffrey Siegal will perform another season of his popular Keyboard Conversations. This performance features works by Scriabin. Ravel, and Liszt. 8 p.m.. Oct. 20. Caruth Auditorium at SMU. 214-768-3510. (L-6)
Verdi: Aida. A new production of one of the world’s most beloved operas. 7:30 p.m.. Oct. 31 & Nov. 5 & 8; 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m., Nov. 2. Music Hall at Fair Park. 214-443-1000. (L-8)

SPORTS
Legends of the Game Baseball Museum. Special displays focus on the game in America: many items are on loan from the National Baseball Hall of Fame (including a Babe Ruth bat and gear belonging to Lou Gehrig). Last tickets are sold one hour before closing. 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Tue-Sat; noon-4 p.m.. Sun. The Ballpark in Arlington. 1000 Ballpark Way, Arlington. Information: 817-273-5098. (B-5)
Lone Star Park. Post Time Pavillion airs simulcast races and features a sports bar and casual dining area. Grandstand features dining area, clubhouse, Jockey Club, bar, private suites and outdoor apron seals. Paddock open to all. Family Fun Park for the kids (track still visible). Live racing is in the summer and fall; simulcast races are year-round, Post Time Pavillion; 10:30 a.m.-ll p.m., Wed-Mon; Grandstand: 4:35-10 p.m.. Wed-Fri; 11:35 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat & Sun. 1000 Lone Star Pkwy.. Grand Prairie, between S,H. 183 and I-30. 972-263-RACE. (D-5)
Mesquite Rodeo. This year is the 40th season of broncs, bull riders, and clowns. Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association-sanctioned competition Friday and Saturday nights April through October. Also, partake of the BBQ Pavillion, pony rides, and petting zoo. Visitors last year included Mick Jagger, Wilford Brimley, and folks from around the world. "Championship Rodeo From Mesquite" is one of the most popular programs on The Nashville Network. 1818 Rodeo Dr. off LBJ Freeway. 972-285-8777. (N-8)
Texas Motor Speedway. The area’s first NASCAR and Indy-car race facility. Road course in the infield and 23-acre lake promise future stock-car and boating exhibitions. Grandstand seats 120,000. Times will vary with races. 3601 Intersection of Hwy 114 and I-35W. 817-215-8500. (B-2)
Virginia Slims Legends Tour. Tennis Superstars Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova headline a cluster of ten superstars in two days of world-class tennis action. October 18 & 19. Four Seasons Resort and Club, Irving. 800-998-1166. (H-5)

THEATER
Intimate Exchanges. Two middle-aged couples face the struggle of relationships and respectability. This comedy features two actors who play the roles of eight characters. Through Oct. 5. 7:30 p.m., Tue-Thu; 8 p.m., Fri; 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.. Sat & Sun. Dallas Theater Center, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. 214-522-8499. (K-7>
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Stephen Sondheim’s comical Broadway farce hits Dallas with a giggle. Sept. 18-Oct. 18; 7:30 p.m., Thu: 8 p.m., Fri & Sat; 2 p.m.. Sun. Theatre Arlington, 305 W. Main St., Arlington. 817-275-7661. (E-9)
Racing Demon. This drama examines British clergymen uncertain of their mission, bedeviled by sexual tensions, and baffled by raw church politics. Oct. 4-Nov, 2. Call for times. Theatre Three, 2800 Routh St., in the Quadrangle. 214-871 -3300. (K-7)
To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday. A romantic play about a young widower’s grieving, mourning, and learning to move on. Oct. 9-25; 8 p.m., Tue-Sat; 2 p.m.. Sun. WaterTower Theatre, Addison Conference and Theatre Centre, 15650 Addison Rd. 972-450-6220. (K-3)
Still Life. This compelling docu-drama is about Vietnam, its tragic period and its cruel aftermath. A Marine veteran of Vietnam, his wife, and his mistress tell their stories, and as they reveal their internal fears and tragedies, they become a metaphor for the nation as a whole. Oct. 9-11, 16-18,8 p.m.; with matinees on Oct. 12, 18, 19at 2:15 p.m.; Oct. 15, 10a.m. Quad C Theatre at Collin County Community College. 972-881-5809. (M-1)
The Last Flapper. Based on "The Writings of Mrs. F. Scott Fitzgerald" by William Luce, this one-woman piece is about the life of schizophrenic Zelda Fitzgerald who tried to balance a tragic life with wit and talent. Oct. 16-Nov. I; 8p.m..Thu-Sat. Bath House Cultural Arts Center, White Rock Lake, 521 E. Lawther Dr. 972-504-6218. (M-6)
The Collected Works of Billy the Kid. From the author of the Academy Award-winning "The English Patient" comes this modern western on the Billy the Kid Legend. This tale tells of the last night of Kid’s life and what he will confront: the enemies, his past, his gang, and the women he has loved. Oct. 22-Nov. 16; 7:30 p.m., Tue-Thu; 8 p.m., Fri & Sat; 7:30 p.m.. Sun; 2 p.m.. Sat & Sun. Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. 972-2631709. (K-7)