Theater in Dallas is by no means insubstantial, but we’ve lived with gaps for years. One of the biggest- the absence of a reasonably sized theater appropriate for hosting touring companies -was filled last winter with the renovation of the Majestic Theatre. Now the Majestic is being filled, this month with the comedy Greater TUna, the special event opener of the brand-new Majestic Broadway Series presented by the Dallas Theater Center and PACE Theatrical Group.
“Tuna” is Tuna, Texas, the fictitious third-smallest town in the state, populated by bigots, wackos and some “just folks,” all 20 of whom are played by Joe Sears and Jaston Williams. Sears and Williams wrote this loony comedy, which first opened in Austin and then enjoyed a healthy off-Broadway run in New York. Most of the critics there liked the show; audiences loved it. Texans should love it even more.
The remaining offerings of the series include Pump Boys and Dinettes, a Tony-nominated musical set in a gas station and its adjoining diner; the very successful Broadway drama Agnes of God, which features Elizabeth Ashley and Mercedes McCambridge; Neil Simon’s warm comedy Brighton Beach Memoirs, a semi-autobiographical remembrance of two families living under one roof during the Depression; and Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream-coat, a cartoonlike musical rendition of the biblical story of Joseph and his coat of many colors.
Through Dec. 23 at the Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm. Tue-Fri at 8 p.m., Sat at 5 and 9 p.m., Sun at 2:30 and 7 p.m. Tickets $20-$14; available at Ticketron outlets or at Dallas Theater Center box office, 526-8857.
THE MANY FACES
OF OLD ENGLAND
Eighteenth-century English portraiture-with all those silk-swathed ladies and lords standing stiffly in front of some dim, ancestral oak-is hardly a subject calculated to quicken the pulse of the average museumgoer. But The Art of Thomas Gainsborough, the Kimbell Art Museum’s current exhibit, is an oddly stirring, even exciting show. The exhibit is a traveling display of 84 drawings chosen by Gainsborough authority John Hayes, director of the National Portrait Gallery in London.
Gainsborough drew compulsively, and he drew exceedingly well. The freshness and verve that characterizes many of his drawings comes from his direct observation of the English landscape. But he was not limited to observation, and in scenes created from his own imagination he fashioned a poetic English landscape that remains haunting.
For this exhibit, the drawings have been supplemented by a selection of the master’s paintings from the Kimbell’s own collection as well as from other sources. Of special importance are three large oils lent from the Paul Mellon Collection at Yale University, including the splendid group portrait, Mr. and Mrs. John Gravenor and Their Daughters Elizabeth and Dorothea.
Through Feb. 19 at the Kimbell Art Museum, 3333 Camp Bowie, Fort Worth. Tue-Sat 10-5, Sun 1-5. (817) 332-8451.
A HOUDAY SWEET
One of the most reliable traditions of the holiday season is the annual production of The Nutcracker, Tchaikovsky’s masterful score choreographed by Russian genius Marius Petipa. George Balanchine, originator of 20th-century dance classics, also created the Nutcracker tradition when he revived the forgotten classic for the New York City Ballet in 1940. Few adaptations approach the spectacular, transcendent magic of that company’s production, but Dallas and Fort Worth don’t do badly by their versions.
The Fort Worth Ballet’s production this year promises to be quite a switch from past seasons, because the Fort Worth troupe will be teaming up with another company, the Hartford Ballet. By adding Hartford Ballet dancers to the Fort Worth company, a previously thinly cast Nutcracker has been transformed into a production with 33 dancers that should present some first-rate footwork. The production is directed by the Hartford Ballet’s artistic director, Michael Uthoff.
The Dallas Ballet presents its version of The Nutcracker in the Music Hall at Fair Park after Christmas. Although the 10-year-old stage sets are more than a little shopworn, the Dallas Ballet’s dancers still bring a good deal of life to the old George Skibine production. New dancers, particularly John Wey Ling and Marjorie Hardwick, will sparkle in the pas de deux. The Dallas Ballet’s first production of the season, The Toreador, showed that artistic director Flem-ming Flindt has exerted some much-needed tightening in the troupe’s ensemble work. Even if you’ve seen Dallas’ Nutcracker a dozen times before (and certainly if you’ve never seen it), this may be a good year to check it out.
Fort Worth Ballet: Dec. 1 and 2 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 3 at 2 p.m. at Tarrant County Convention Center Theater, Fort Worth. Tickets $22.50-$6; available at Central Ticket Agency. (817) 335-9000 or metro 429-1181. Dallas Ballet: Dec. 26-30 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 27-29 at 2 p.m. at the Music Hall, Fair Park. Tickets $25-$5. 744-4430.
D’s Openers include this month’s theater, music, film, sports, art, dance, enlightenment and recreation events, as well as a list of the top nightlife establishments in Dallas. These listings are updated and supplemented each month. They have nothing whatsoever to do with paid advertising.
All events listings should be addressed to the Openers editor. They must be received at least seven weeks before publication.
Credit card notations: MC/MasterCard, V/Visa, AE/American Express, DC/Diners Club, CB/Carte Blanche. “All credit cards” indicates that all five cards are accepted.
Art Slnaabaugh. These large black-and-white panoramic landscape photos, seldom exhibited, are both an introduaion and a farewell to the artist, who died just as the exhibit was in preparation. Afterimage, 2800 Routh in the Quadrangle, Suite 151. Through Dec 10 Mon-Sat 10-5:30 748-2521.
Barbara Kasten. The artist, a New York photogapher, uses glass, mirrors and reflected light to create the geometric abstractions in these large, striking color photographs Carol Taylor, Art, 2508 Cedar Springs. Through Dec 23 Tue-Sat 10-5, Mon by appointment. 745-1923
David Bates’ large oil paintings aren’t nearly as naive as they appear to be. His “aw, shucks” approach to painting and drawing veils a very sophisticated talent, which was trained in SMU’s excellent painting program. His approach also makes for lively and appealing images-fresh, direct, colorful and full of the zesty flavor of the bayous and back yards in which Bates finds his characteristic subjects: fishermen, dogs, kids at play and folks going about their daily lives. Bates has been having quite a year: He has presented his first New York show, and his works have been exhibited at both the Corcoran Biennial and the New Orleans Triennial. Through Dec. 10 at DW Gallery, 3200 Main. Tue-Sat 11-5. 939-0045.
Christo The man who wrapped Australia’s coast, fenced California’s foothills and surrounded a group of Florida islands with acres of pink fabric has documented his projects with drawings, photographs and plans that are worKs of art in themselves Delahunty Gallery, 2701 Canton Through Dec 14. Tue-Sat 10-5 744-1346.
Dan Allison Quirky, bizarre but highly skillful, the aquatint etchings of this Houston artist have earned him a national reputation as one of the most talented young printmakers in the country Gallery One, 4935 Byers, Fort Worth. Dec 10-Jan 28. Mon-Fn 10-5, Sat 10-2. (817)737-9566.
Historical Prints. Earlier this year, the Amon Carter Museum quietly acquired a prime collection of etchings, lithographs and silk-screen prints. Now, in the second of two installments, it’s proudly putting its new acquisitions on display. Amon Carter Museum, 3501 Camp Bowie, Fort Worth Through Dec 31. Tue-Sat 10-5. Sun 1-5:30. (817) 738-1933.
Hot off the Press Readers and writers are not the only ones to benefit from the invention of printing; this show presents lithographs, etchings and even whole books that are printed by and under the direction of visual artists Mattingly Baker Gallery, 3000 McKinney. Through Jan 6. Tue-Fri 10-6, Sat 11-5. 526-0031.
Karl Struss A little-known member of Alfred Stieglitz’s famous Photo-Secession group, Struss made platinum prints of soft-focused, dreamlike beauty. Amon Carter Museum, 3501 Camp Bowie, Fort Worth. Through Dec 31. Tue-Sat 10-5, Sun 1-5:30. (817) 738-1933.
Sid Richardson Collection of Western Art This prime collection of Remingtons and Russells, all full of rip-roaring action, are exhibited in a prime location amid the restored 19th-century splendor of Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth. Sid Richardson Collection, 309 Main, Fort Worth Through Dec 31 Tue-Fri 10-5, Sat 11-6, Sun 1-5. (817)332-6554.
20th-century Drawings Selected from private collections and the museum’s own holdings, this exhibit coincides with drawing exhibits at the Amon Carter and Kimbell museums. Fort Worth Art Museum, 1309 Montgomery. Through Jan 15. Tue 10-9, Wed-Sat 10-5, Sun 1-5.(817)738-9215.
Annie. Perennial but pleasing, this overdone musical about the orphan, the dog, the billionaire and you know the rest includes some of the most memorable songs in recent musical comedy history, which is no small success. And don’t let anyone tell you that seeing the film beats seeing “Annie” live. It’s fun for kids and big people, too Through Dec 18 at Dallas Repertory Theatre. NorthPark Center. Wed-Sat at 8:15 pm, Sun at 3 pm. Tickets $10 Fri & Sat, $8 Wed & Thur, $9 Sun ($1.50 discount for students or persons over 65) 369-8966.
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof The New Arts Theatre is going strong again after a fallow season. This month, Christopher Nichols directs one of Tennessee Williams’ most popular plays, a steamy, languorous tale of Southern decorum and the wiles of Maggie the Cat. Through Dec 10 at New Arts Theatre, 702 Ross at Market. Wed & Thur at 8 pm, Fri & Sat at 8:30 pm, Sun at 2:30 & 7:30 pm. Tickets $10.50 Fri & Sat; $7.50 Wed, Thur & Sun. 761-9064.
Crimes of the Heart SMU graduate Beth Henley has a love of lunacy and an ear for the vernacular of her native Mississippi. Both blend well in “Crimes of the Heart,” a comedy about three sisters and their peculiar mutual admiration society. Dale Rose directs this Pulitzer Prize-winning play, which is making its first appearance in Dallas as the second show of the new Plaza Theatre’s inaugural season. Through Dec 4 at the Plaza Theatre, 6719 Snider Plaza Tue-Sun at 8:15 pm, Sun matinee at 2:30 pm. Tickets $16-$14 Fri & Sat; S13-$11 Tue-Thur & Sun; $10 & $9 Sun matinee. 363-7000
Greater Tuna. Tuna, Texas, the fictitious third-smallest town in the state, is populated by bigots, wackos and some “just folks.” all 20 of whom are played by Joe Sears and Jaston Williams. Sears and Williams wrote this loony comedy, which opened in Austin and then enjoyed a healthy off-Broadway success in New York. ’Greater Tuna’ is the special event forerunner to the new Majestic Broadway Series, presented by the Dallas Theater Center and PACE Theatrical Group, which promises to bring great touring shows-finally-to Dallas. Through Dec 23 at the Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm. Tue-Fri at 8 pm, Sat at 5 & 9 pm. Sun at 2:30 & 7 pm Tickets $20-$14, available at Ticketron outlets or at the DTC box office, 526-8857.
Quitters The life of American frontier women was Spartan and diligent, but it certainly wasn’t one-dimensional. Quilting was a chore, a record of history and an art. In this innovative musical by Molly Newman and Barbara Damashek, it is also the poetic device that lends color, form and voice to these women’s hopes and sorrows The adroit Jenna Worthen directs. Through Jan 8 at Stage #1. Greenville Avenue Theatre, 2914 Greenville Wed-Fri at 8:15 pm. Sat at 5:30 & 9 pm, Sun at 7 pm Tickets $10 Fri & Sat; $8.50 Wed, Thur & Sun 824-2552
Same Time Next Year Can a love affair survive for 30 years when the lovers meet only once a year for a secret rendezvous in the country? Playwright Bernard Slade answers this unlikely question with two very likable characters in a bittersweet comedy that is, in places, delicious Frank Gorshin and Jo Ann Pflug star Through Dec 31 at Granny’s Dinner Playhouse. 12205 Coit Tue-Sat dinner served at 6:30 pm. curtain at 8:15; Sun matinee lunch served at 12:30 pm, curtain at 2. Tickets $21 95 Fri & Sat: $18 95 Wed. Thur & Sun; $15.95 Tue 239-0153
Mira, Mira on the Wall
Victor Mira is barely known in this country, but his paintings are shown frequently in his native Spain and, with recent success, in northern Europe. The simple, linear figures on his canvases can be traced back more than 14,000 years to the famous cave paintings of Altamira. Unlike those “primitive” images, however, Mira’s works reflect a refined sensibility. These are works of raw energy and dark poetry. A number of the artist’s paintings, including still lifes influenced by 17th-century Spanish art, are featured in Victor Mira. Through Jan. 22 at Meadows Gallery, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Mon-Sat 10-5, Sun 1-5. 692-2516.
School for WIves Moliere’s delightful, very funny play is about a bachelor who is terrified of marrying an unfaithful wife To prevent this, he plans to marry his 17-year-old ward, who has been kept in a convent under strict instructions to be told nothing about men. Laurence O’Dwyer. who played the role at Theatre Three in 1973 and is very well-suited to it, is back again Dec 6-18 at Theatre Three, 2800 Routh in the Quadrangle Tue-Sat at 8:15 pm, Sun at 2:30 & 7 pm Tickets $1350 Fri & Sat; $11 Tue-Thur & Sun, 871-3300.
Side by Side by Sondhelm This show is an artfully arranged selection of early Stephen Sondheim compo-sitions-tunes from Broadway hits and flops that launched his career and established him as the American musical theater’s wittiest lyricist and most clever composer Through Dec 10 at Stage West, 821 W Vickery, Fort Worth. Wed & Thur at 8 pm, Fri & Sat at 8:30 pm Tickets $8 50 Sat; $8 Fri. $7 Wed & Thur. Dinner available starting 90 minutes before curtain. (817) 332-6238
BL Lacerta Dallas’ improvisatory chamber ensemble presents its Christmas concert Dec 16 at 8 pm at Bathhouse Cultural Center, 521 E Lawther Tickets $6.50. 328-8428
Brookhaven College Violinist Stephanie Chase appears in the Performing Arts Series Dec 6 at 8 pm at the Performance Hall, Brookhaven College. 3939 Valley View Lane Tickets $10 & $9. 620-4118.
Celebration for Carter
Distinguished American composer Elliott Carter celebrates his 75th birthday this month. In honor of the event, the contemporary music specialists of Voices of Change perform Carter’s Triple Duo in a subscription series concert that also features the work that inspired it: Schubert’s Octet in F for wind and strings. Dec. 5 at 8:15 p.m. at Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Tickets $8. 692-3189. Two weeks later, pianist Claudia Stevens repeats a Carnegie Hall recital featuring Carter’s Piano Sonata as well as music written in Carter’s honor by various composers, including Dallasite Robert Xavier Rodriguez. Dec. 19 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium of the Central Dallas Public Library, 1515 Young. Free. 749-4235.
Dallas Bach Society. The sixth annual New Year’s Eve concert will include JS. Bach’s Cantata 51 (*Jauchzet Gott”) and Brandenburg Concerto No. IV, as well as other music by Bach and Handel, with soprano Ruth Sieber, trumpeter Richard Giangiulio. violinist J Patrick Rafferty and flautists Jenifer McKenzie and Lee Ann Slavic joining the Dallas Bach Orchestra under artistic director Paul Riedo Dec 31 at 10 pm at St. Thomas Aquinas Church, 6306 Kenwood Tickets $7 50-$5 821-3086.
Dallas Chamber Orchestra. “A Baroque Christmas” will feature Corelli’s Christmas Concerto and the Viola Concerto attributed to Handel with soloist Ellen Rose. Dec 11 at 7 pm at Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Tickets $8. 826-6974.
Dallas Civic Chorus. Lloyd Pfautsch conducts the annual choral orchestral Christmas concert, including Vivaldi’s “Magnificat,” J.S. Bach’s Cantata 191 and Parker’s “Gaudete.” Dec 13 at 8:15 pm at Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Tickets $5. 738-8360
Dallas Opera. Reynald Giovaninetti conducts Stravinsky’s “The Rake’s Progress” with soprano Sheri Green-awald, tenor Neil Rosenstein, baritone Michael Devlin, mezzo-soprano Patricia Johnson, mezzo-soprano Jane Shaulis, tenor Richard Brunner and bass David Cumberland, with stage director Julian Hope. Dec 1, 7 & 10 at 8 pm and Dec 4 at 2 pm. The season closes with Verdi’s “La Forza del Destino,” conducted by Nicola Rescigno and featuring soprano Linda Esther Gray, baritone Matteo Manuguerra, tenor Giuseppe Gia-comini, mezzo-soprano Katherine Ciesinski, bass Franco Ventriglia, bass Dimitri Kavrakos, bass Sesto Bruscantini and tenor Piero De Palma, with stage director Nicola Maestnni. Dec 15,21 & 23 at 8 pm and Dec 18 at 2 pm. All performances at the Music Hall, Fair Park. Tickets$90$6 528-3200.
Dallas Public Library. Pianist Claudia Stevens presents a tribute for Elliott Carter’s 75th birthday, including Ran’s Sonata Waltzer, Imbne’s “Short Story,” Rodriguez’s “Reflections on Sensual Indulgence,” Shearer’s “Medallion,” Fine’s Double Variations for piano solo, Carter’s Piano Sonata and a “Musical Bouquet” by various composers Dec 19 at 7 pm in the Dallas Central Public Library auditorium, 1515 Young. Free. 749-4235.
Dallas Symphony Orchestra. James Rives-Jones conducts Handel’s “Messiah” as arranged and orchestrated by Mozart, with the DSO Chorus, soprano Lila Deis, mezzo-soprano Martha Felix, tenor Forbes Wood and bass George Massey. Dec 17 & 18 at 8:15 pm at McFarlin Auditorium, SMU. Tickets $14-$7. 692-0203.
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra Maxim Shostakovich conducts Wagner’s Prelude to “Die Meister-singer,” Tchaikovsky’s “Romeo and Juliet” and Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 10. Dec 10 at 8 pm and Dec 11 at 3 pm at Tarrant County Convention Center Theatre, 1111 Houston, Fort Worth. Tickets $15-$5. (817)926-8831.
Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra. The annual Christmas concert by the 90-piece Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra will include works by Saint Saens, Beethoven, Frescobaldi and Vivaldi. Also featured in the concert will be organist Larry Palmer and the combined choruses of Arts Magnet High School Dec 18 at 7:30 pm in Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Free. 368-8500.
Meadows School of the Arts The SMU Choirs appear under the baton of Lloyd Pfautsch, Dec 4 at 4 pm. Resident chamber ensemble Voices of Change performs Carter’s Triple Duo and Schubert’s Octet, Dec 5 at 8:15 pm. Tickets $8 Tim Geller leads the SMU Percussion Ensemble concert, Dec 6 at 8:15 pm. The SMU Symphony performs under conductor Anshel Brusilow, presenting Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 in C and Piano Concerto in D minor (with soloist Gary Okeson) and Stravinsky’s “Le Sacre du Printemps,” Dec 7 at 8:15 pm. Simon Sargon conducts the SMU Opera Workshop in scenes from Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” and Puccini’s “Suor Angelica.” Dec 10 & 11 at 8:15 pm at Margo Jones Theatre. Owen Arts Center. SMU. Unless otherwise indicated, all events are in Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Free. 692-2628.
Dallas Metropolitan Ballet. This dance school/company annually features its students and graduates in “The Night Before Christmas,” choreographed by Ann Etgen and Bill Atkinson to the music of Burgmuller and Adam. Dec 10 & 11 at 2:30 pm in McFarlin Auditorium, SMU. Tickets $8-$4; available at Rainbow-Ticketmaster outlets and Sears stores 373-8000.
Meadows School of the Arts. The Meadows Repertory Dance Ensemble begins its second season by presenting choreography by faculty member Bob Beard and Meadows Distinguished Visiting Professors Edward Burgess and Robert Dunn. The program consists of contemporary and jazz dance and musical theater works, and it will be performed by students in the Dance Division. Dec 2 & 3 at 8:15 pm and Dec 4 at 2:15 pm in Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Tickets $5; $3.50 for students. 692-3146.
Dimensions in Dance
Dallas Black Dance Theatre, a stylish and accomplished company of 13 dancers that is now in its seventh season, is taking on increasingly ambitious productions as it matures. The highlight of its fall season is a new work, Suite Jesus, choreographed by Jac-quelyn Muckleroy Houston. The music, a religious suite arranged by Nedra James, will be sung by the Maurine F. Bailey Choir, a much-lauded group from Lincoln High School that competed in Vienna this year. The program also includes Ode to Donny Hathaway and Where Are You Now (an abstract male solo for dancer Derrick Brown), both choreographed by El Centra dance instructor Mel Purnell. Dance Forever, contributed by Professor Darwin Prioleau of SMU’s dance department, and On the Road to Rio, choreographed by Cristyne Lawson, complete the program. Dec. 15 and 16 at 10 a.m. (children’s matinee), Dec. 16 and 17 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 18 at 2:30 p.m. at Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center, SMU. Tickets $10-$8; available at Rainbow-Ticketmaster outlets and Sears stores. 373-8000 or 371-1170.
Texas Woman’s University. TWU’s lively and prolific dance department presents “Dance by the Dozen: 12 Choreographers in Concert,” Dec 2 & 3. This is a chance to see a program of original dances choreographed by graduating seniors in the dance division. Dec 2 & 3 at 8 pm in Dance Building Ballroom, TWU, Denton. Free. (817) 383-1573.
Dallas Public Library. ’The Season of Loving and Giving” is the theme of December’s Wednesday matinee film series. Dec 7: “The Shopping Bag Lady” and “The Hands.” Dec 14: “The Happy Prince” and “is it Always Right to Be Right?” Dec 21: “Martin the Cobbler” and “The Giving Tree.” Dec 28: “Blind Sunday” and “John Brown, Rose and the Midnight Cat.” Showings at 12:10 pm at the Central Public Library auditorium, 1515 Young. Free. 749-4478. Walt Disney’s “Peter Pan” will be presented Dec 16-30 at all Dallas Public Library locations. Free. Call 749-4402 for locations and times.
Granada Theatre. This month, the Louis Bufiuel festival honors the famous Spanish filmmaker by presenting a Burluel film every Thursday night. Dec 1: “Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” and “Phantom of Liberte” Dec 2 & 3: “Lolita” and “A Clockwork Orange.”
Dec 4 & 5: “You Can’t Take It With You” and “It’s a Wonderful Life” double feature. Dec 6 & 7: “Dracula” (1979) and “Nosferatu. the Vampire.” Dec 8: “Exterminating Angel” and “Viridiana.” Dec 9& 10: “Bananas,” “Love and Death” and “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex.” Dec 11 & 12: “On the Waterfront” and “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Dec 13 & 14: “Heartland” and “We of the Never Never.” Dec 15: “Death in the Garden” and “Diary of a Chambermaid.” Dec 16 & 17: Three Stooges festival. Dec 18 & 19: “Bringing Up Baby” and “The Women.” Dec 20 & 21: “Giant” and “The Lusty Men.” Dec 22: “Un Chien An-dalou.” “Los Olvidados” and “Nazarin.” Dec 23 & 24: “Some Like It Hot” and Tootsie.” Dec 25 & 26: The Man Who Would Be King” and “The Wind and the Lion.” Dec 27 & 28: “The Hunger” and “Cat People” (1982). Dec29: “The Criminal Life of Archbaldo De La Cruz” and “El.” Dec 30 &31: “Nudo Di Donna.” Granada Theatre. 3524 Greenville. Tickets $3.50; $2 for children and senior citizens; $4 for premieres and special engagements. Call 823-9610 for times.
University of Texas at Dallas. Dec 2: “Gallipoli” at 7:30 & 9:30 pm. Dec 7: “From Mao to Mozart” at 7:30 & 9 pm. Dec 9: “Barry Lyndon” at 7:30 pm. Dec 14: “The Chosen” at 7:30 & 9:30 pm. Dec 16: “The Mikado” at 7:30 & 9:40 pm. Dec 17: “Bambi” at 1 pm. Showings at Polykarp Kusch Auditorium, Founders North Building, UTD, Richardson. Tickets $2; $1 for persons under 18 or 65 and older. 690-2945.
The Isthmus Institute. This month, the institute begins its ’83-84 dialogue series, which focuses on human values Robert H. Waterman Jr., co-author of the best seller ’In Search of Excellence: Lessons From America’s Best-Run Companies,” will present “The Human Element of Enterprise,” Dec 3 at 9 am. Henry Margenau, Ph.D., brings a new perspective from modern physics on the world of human aspirations and values in his lecture, “The Miracle of Existence,” Dec 9 at 7:30 pm. Attorney Elmer W. Johnson, vice president and general counsel of General Motors Corp., presents “The Moral Purpose of Law,” Dec 10 at 9 am. All discussions are at Gooch Auditorium, University of Texas Health Science Center at Dallas, 5323 Harry Hines. Tickets $50 per session. 698-8824
The Dallas Institute. In the final installment of “The Crisis of Public Education,” a six-part lecture series examining American public schooling, The Dallas Institute presents literary critic Dr Louise Cowan in a lecture entitled “The Joy of Learning,” Dec 14 at 7:30 pm. The Dallas Institute, 2719 Routh. Free. 698 9090.
Fitness Festival Weekend As one of six US cities selected to host the national Presidential Sports/Fitness Festival, Dallas celebrates a weekend of health and fitness when it hosts the Presidential Sports/Fitness Festival and the 14th annual Dallas White Rock Marathon Dec 3 & 4. The festival begins Dec 3 with a fitness expo from 10 am-6 pm featuring health tests, exhibits, clinics, films, sporting events and demonstrations. In addition, a three-hour seminar at 1 pm will feature speakers such as Dr Kenneth Cooper, the nation’s foremost authority on aerobics exercise; Jim Fixx, author of several best-selling books on running; and Dr Richard Stein, a cardiovascular conditioning expert with the American Heart Association. Both the seminar and the expo will be at Dallas Convention Center. Free; reservations required for seminar sessions Call (800) 525-4444 for reservations and information The White Rock marathon begins at City Hall Dec 4 at 9 am The 262-mile course circles White Rock Lake and ends at City Hall. Entrance fee is $25 after Nov 27; all entrants must have a TAC number Registration forms available at Phidippides, The Jogger, Luke’s Locker or any Dallas running store. 361-6493.
Dallas Cowboys. Texas Stadium, Irving. Individual home game tickets $15 at the Dallas Cowboys Ticket Office. 6116 N Central Expwy 369-3211. Dec 11 at 3 pm vs Washington
Dallas Mavericks. Reunion Arena, Dallas. Home game tickets $8, $6 & $4; available at Rainbow-Ticketmaster outlets, Sears stores or Reunion Arena box office All games start at 7:35 pm 9880117.
Dec 3 vs Chicago
7 vs Washington
14 vs Indiana
28 vs San Diego
30 vs Boston
SMU. Moody Coliseum, SMU campus. Individual home game tickets $6; available at SMU ticket office. Moody Coliseum 692-2902.
Dec 6 at 7:30 pm vs Pennsylvania
10 at 2 pm vs Georgia State
16 & 17 The Dallas Morning News Classic tournament (SMU. University of New Orleans. Arizona State& Centenary). Dec 16 at 7 & 9 pm and Dec 17 at 6 & 8pm at Reunion Arena.
TCU. Daniel-Meyer Coliseum, TCU, Fort Worth Individual home game tickets $6; $3 for students; available at Rainbow-Ticketmaster outlets or at the TCU ticket office (817) 921-7967
Dec 1 vs East Texas State
3 vs UT-San Antonio
17 vs Long Beach State
20 vs California Baptist
23 vs Texas Lutheran
Belle Starr. If Levi’s originated in the Old West, then designer jeans may have originated at Belle Starr- the New West But Belle Starr isnt too slick: The semi-urban cowboys and cowgirls who polka and two-step on Belle’s large dance floor sure know Hank Williams when they hear him. (7724 N Central Expwy near Southwestern. 750-4787 Mon, Tue&Sat 7 pm-2 am. Wed-Fn 6 pm-2 am. Sun 4 pm-2 am. All credit cards.)
Boardwalk Beach Club. This place is a pleasant, if fast-paced, mixture of opposites. The club’s drawing card is Fifties and Sixties music, but patrons here are mostly under-30 singles Next to the South Seas mural on one wall, space has been cleared for a dance floor.
but strangely enough, hardly anyone dances (We say “strangely enough” because the club’s sound system is so loud that speaking or listening appear to be impossible ) Drinks are pretty solid here, but the snail-like service may hamper your enjoyment of them. (6332 La Vista. 833-5340 Daily 10am-2am. MC, V, AE)
Café Dalta. Newly remodeled Cafe Dallas sports ceiling fans, slick art posters, obligatory potted plants and smiling waitresses bedecked in slinky red dresses. The club’s circular, casinolike layout seems conducive to just about any sort of bar behavior, from frenzied dancing on the split-level dance floor to intimate whispering on the cushioned couches that line the walls. But all you beautiful people partial to sweatsuit chic beware: Sneakers – however expensive they might be – are not allowed (5500Greenville. 9870066 Mon-Fri4pm-2 am, Sal & Sun 8 pm-2 am Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-9 pm. MC, V, AE.)
Calm Eddy’s. If the fun goes out of routine bar hopping, hop on over to Calm Eddy’s, located in the rebud-ding Deep Ellum district near downtown This innovative comedy club features a comedy show a la “Saturday Night Live” performed by the house troupe, the Pezz, and live jazz performed by Palladium every Friday and Saturday night. Call for information about other weekly performers. (2612 Commerce. 747-1131. Sun. Wed & Thur8-11 pm. Fri& Sat 9 pm-1 am. Closed Mon & Tue. No credit cards.)
Comedy Comer. This isn’t such a bad place to catch semi-big name comedy acts. Comedians in their own rights fill the audience, while comedy performers of varying quality take the stage for short sets of stand-up humor. (8202 Park Lane at Greenville. 361-7461 Sets begin Mon- Thur & Sun at 8:30 pm. Fri & Sat at 8:30 & 10 pm. Reservations recommended on weekends MC. V. AE)
Confetti. One man’s eclecticism is another man’s clutter, and this may be the most eclectic bar in Dallas Dangling bicycles, zigzag neon and poster-plastered walls reveal a theme bar that couldn’t decide on a theme. If you can dig your way through the crowd, you’ll discover two flashy dance floors, several well-manned bars-maybe even Mr. or Ms. Right Music ranges from Fifties doo-wa to Eighties do-whatever (5201 Matilda oft Lovers Lane. 369-6969 Mon-Thur 4:30 pm-2 am. Fri 430 pm-4 am. Sat 7 pm-4 am. Sun 7 pm-2 am Weekend cover S3. All credit cards)
Diamond Jim’s. What a great place to get picked up! It’s not too pretentious, it’s not overdone and it has the essential country/Western elements to offer its patrons: pseudo-Western surroundings, lots of floor space for two-stepping or swing dancing and oodles of available singles. We especially like the windowsills that line one wall; they’re perfect perches for people-watching. (5601 Greenville. 691-2411. Mon-Fn 5 pm-2 am. Sat & Sun 7 pm-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 5-8 pm. MC. V, AE.)
élan. Ever since Dallas’ original beautiful-people bar underwent a bit of cosmetic surgery and reopened in early March, its mood has changed a bit-and the word is smooth. Although elan still glitters-only now it’s a tad more hi-tech – it’s quieter, more sophisticated and generally less showy for the sake of being showy. (5111 Greenville. 692-9855. Tue-Fri 4:30 pm-2 am. Sat 7 pm-2 am Closed Sun & Mon. Happy hour: Tue-Fri 4:30-8 pm All credit cards.)
Four Seasons Ballroom. This place offers big-band music for ballroom dancing A strict dress code is enforced: dresses for the ladies and coats and ties for the gentlemen Only setups, beer and soft drinks are served, except on Fridays, when food is available Cover varies; free dance lessons are offered (4930 Military Pkwy. 349-0390 Wed 8:45 pm-12:15 am, Fri 9 pm-1230 am. No credit cards.)
Ground Zaro. Welcome to Sixties go-go gone New Wave gaga “Dallas’ first nuclear bar” features live bands nightly, plenty of parquet and. . .oh, yeah . a dancing girl in a cage (6844 Twin Hills, one block south of Park Lane 3630167 Tue-Sun 8 pm-2 am Closed Mon Cover varies. MC. V, AE.)
Longhorn Ballroom. So what il it’s crowded and smoky, the cover’s too high and the tourists are too many? This is Bob Wills’ Longhorn Ballroom, the place for kicker dancin’, beer dnnkin’ and hell raisin’ You’ll fit in whether you can dance or not, but you may as well plan on coming home with bruised toenails (those rhinestone cowboys can be real oafs). No one should live in Dallas without going to the Longhorn at least once: I’ts a Texas tradition. (216 Corinth at Industrial 4283128 Wed-Sun 7pm-2am. All credit cards)
Nick’s Uptown. Behind the shaded windows at Nick’s you’ll find what is perhaps the finest musical club in Texas The musicians (usually big-name jazz or rock ’n’ roll) come from near and far. But beware: Buying a ticket doesn’t necessarily guarantee you a seat-it’s sometimes standing room only. Yet the fans just keep coming back (3606Greenville 827-0561; ticketinfor-mation 827-4802. Daily: 8 pm-2am. MC, V, AE.)
Packard’s. This Old Town dance club gave Confetti-goers a place to go when the line at Confetti grew too long. Now the Packard’s line is just as long, so take your pick-both bars are flashy, large and swingles-soaked Packard’s features a wide, open dance floor, lots of fluorescent colors and pop music mixed with Fifties and Sixties tunes. (5500 Greenville in Old Town, Suite403. 361-9517. Mon-Thur 4:30 pm-2 am. Fri4:30 pm-3 am. Sat 7 pm-3 am. Sun noon-2 am. Weekend cover: S3 MC. V, AE.)
Poor Davkfs Pub. After considerable deliberation. Poor David moved his hole-in-the-wall folk music establishment from its longtime McKinney Avenue location to the lights of lower Greenville. But he didn’t leave behind his commitment to solid live music Kerrville Folk Festival regulars, including legendary folk singers Odetta and Tom Paxton, appear often, as do Steve Fromholz. Shake Russell and John Vandiver We miss the coffeehouse look of mismatched tables and dinette chairs, but the new version still retains much of Poor Davids old flair. (1924 Greenville 821-9891 Mon i Wed-Sat 4 pm-2 am, Tue & Sun 7 pm-2 am. Cover varies. No credit cards.)
Popslcle Tom. Go here to listen to the live and lively jazz, funk and rock ’n’ roll, not just to hear it Granted, youll have trouble hearing anything else, but that’s okay because the music is great. Don’t be disappointed – Popsicle Toes isn’t a place to be “seen,” though this jazz-oriented club attracts a spirited, sincere-looking dance crowd (5627Dyer 361-0477. Tue-Sun 8 pm-2 am. Closed Mon. Happy hour: Fn4-7 pm. MC, V, AE.)
Ttw Rallhaad. Quality pop music and comedy with no cover charge is the drawing card here. It’s a rarity that almost overcomes the club’s major irritations: You cant run a cash tab during happy hour, the drinks are only so-so and the waiters and waitresses sometimes wait too long between visits to your table (6919 Twin Hills. 369-8700 Sun & Mon 5 pm-1 am. Tue-Sat 5 pm-2 am Happy hour: Mon-Fn 5-7 pm MC, V, AE, DC.)
Ravel’s. This cavernous singles bar may remind you ot a bad 1967 sci-fi movie version of The Future” Track lights cut through the smoky blackness, beaming down like searchlights from a spaceship Music video screens are everywhere The well drinks are expensive, and the service can be slow, even when the room is mostly empty. But if you dance up an appetite, you can satisfy it under the same roof (Ravel’s is also part restaurant, offering a limited but pricey menu.) (Registry Hotel. 1520 Dallas Pkwy Mon-Fn 5 pm-2 am, Sat & Sun 6 pm-2 am. Happy hour: Mon- Thur 5-fl pm, Fri 5-6 pm. All credit cards’)
The Sock Hop. What’s new at The Sock Hop? Better to ask what’s old, since the theme here is late Fifties/early Sixties Inside the Sock Hop are the front end of a ’57 Chevy, beboppmg waitresses in cheerleader garb and other ’Happy Days” regalia. Best of all, the house band. Dash, plays some of the finest nostalgic rock in town. This is a great place in which to forget the Eighties (2946 WNorthwest Hwy. 352 6856 Tue-Sun 3 pm-2 am Closed Mon Happy hour: 3-7 pm MC. V. AE.)
Strictly TaBu. A recent return to TaBu confirms our faith in one of Dallas’ best jazz bars, not just for the jazz (which is frequently excellent) but for the easy, unpretentious atmosphere. We like the dining area in the back, where very good pizza and pasta are dished up. This is the perfect place for a late-night rendezvous with an intimate admirer or an old friend. (4111 Lomo Alto 522-8101 Live music nightly. Mon-Thur 5 pm-midnight, Fri 5 pm-1 am, Sat 6 pm-1 am. Sun 6 pm-midnight. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 5-8 pm. All credit cards.)
Studebaker’s. This latest offering in nostalgic dance bars with car themes gets its name from the bright red Studebaker at one end of the dance floor Studebaker’s disc jockey favors hits from the fabulous Fifties and Sixties (the club doesn’t play any music recorded after 1969), and the waitresses wear poodle skirts and saddle oxfords. It all makes for a boppin’ good time. (8788 N Central Expwy in NorthPark East. 696-2475 Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am, Sun 4 pm-2 am. Dress code after 4 pm. MC, V, AE.)
Tango. If you can’t SUAD, don’t Tango. SUAD is Tango-lingo for Shut Up And Dance, and SUAD is what Tango is all about. Tango was a bank building before Shannon Wynne converted it into a labyrinthian shrine to dancing. Now it’s a two-story New Wave hodgepodge hangout swarming with every imaginable variation on the word “punk.” Don’t go here on weekends unless you’re very fond of crowds. But with careful planning you can catch good live bands here. (1827 Greenville, 821-5800; box office 824-1101. Sun, Tue & Wed 7 pm-2 am, Thur-Sat 7 pm-4 am. Happy hour: Tue-Fri 5-8 pm (no cover). Closed Mon. MC, V, AE.)
Texas Tea House. While looking for a good place to go dancing, we were tempted to pass up this historical establishment simply because of its appearance. But the Tea House is a friendly, trendless country/Western spot in which to drink beer and enjoy the disharmonious but good-natured Will Barnes Band. The beer (longnecks only) is cold, the crowd is always rowdy and the outdoor bleachers (this is strictly a beer garden) aren’t too bad, unless the night is chilly. Dress is very casual. (3400 Kings Road. 526-9171. Wed-Sat 8 pm-2 am. No credit cards.)
Tim Ballard’s. North Dallasites are missing out on a good thing if they pass up this jazz bar on the Lemmon Avenue strip. Here you can have it both ways: It’s perfect for a late-afternoon chat over drinks. Perfect, that is, until the band starts heating up around 9 o’clock. Then it’s time to sit back, cut the chatter and enjoy the jazz that is the club’s drawing card. On the minus side, though, service is haphazard, and the drinks are expensive for what you get. (3524 Inwood at Lemmon. Daily 4 pm-2 am. 559-3050 MC, V, AE.)
Zebo’s. This is a pop-music dance bar that’s wide-open and unpretentious, with a low cover charge-an increasingly rare find. Zebo’s real forte, however, is its Rockabilly Wednesday, which features live bands and pumped-in rock ’n’ roll. (5915 E Northwest Hwy. 361-4272. Tue-Fri6pm-2am, Sat& Sun 7 pm-2 am. Happy hour: Tue-Fri 6-8 pm, Sat 7-9 pm. MC, V, AE.)
Andrew’s. The decor here is Scottish pub with lots of brick; the service is efficient. The drink menu is larger than the food menu (great for liquid diets), with specialties ranging from hot coffee drinks to tutti-frutti tropical knockouts. (3301 McKinney, 521-6535; 14930 Midway, 385-1613. Daily 11:15 am-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 2-7 pm, daily 11 pm-2 am. All credit cards.)
Balboa Caté. This dark, relaxing fern bar offers good drinks, expeditious service and moderate crowds. The menu consists of reasonably priced and filling sandwiches, burgers, salads and smooth guacamole and chips. (3604 Oak Lawn. 521-1068 Daily: 11 am-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm. All credit cards.)
Biff’s. When you look out Biffs windows at the lush greenery of Old Vickery Park, even the traffic on Greenville Avenue somehow seems peaceful. The combination nachos here are a civic treasure, but the drinks are only average (7402 Greenville. 696-1952 Daily: 11 am-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm. MC, V, AE.)
Cardinal Puff’s. Mostly we love the atmosphere here: open rooms filled with gentle breezes, plants, garden furniture and an occasional wandering cat. The large beer garden is great for conversation and relaxation over cold pitchers of beer and loaded nachos. (4615 Greenville. 369-1969 Mon-Sat 11:30 am-2 am, Sun noon-2am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 11:30am-7pm. MC, V, AE, DC.)
Chelsea Corner. Almost hidden at the intersection of Monticello and McKinney, Chelsea Corner offers the “fun” food and drinks of upper Greenville Avenue in a casual atmosphere more akin to lower Greenville Avenue without being either. The well drinks are potent and reasonably priced, and the special drinks (such as the frozen Tumbleweed and the Scarlet Fever) are luscious. (4830 McKinney. 522-3501. Mon-Fri 11:30 am-2 am, Sat & Sun noon-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 2-7 pm, daily 11 pm-2am. MC, V, AE. DC.)
Dave & Buster’s. “There’s nothing quite like it” is Dave & Buster’s slogan, and they’re not kidding. The place is enormous, but the brass and dark wood decor adds a degree of sophistication. Head for the umpteen pool tables lining the walls; try shuffleboard, darts, Pente or backgammon; or just sip a cool one at the large bar on the main floor. (2710 Electronic, near Walnut Hill at StemmonsFrwy. 3530620 Mon-Fri 11 am-2am, Sat 11:30am-2am, Sun 11:30 am-midnight. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4:30-7 pm All credit cards.)
The Den. Located in the Stoneleigh Hotel, this is the essence of what a bar used to be: very small, very dark and very red. with very strong drinks, (2927 Maple. 742-7111. Mon-Sat 11 am-midnight. Sun noon-midnight. All credit cards.)
Elght-O. This still gets our vote for the most original bar in town The sanitarium-green walls don’t seem quite as shocking now as when the Eight-0 first opened its New Wave doors more than two years ago, but the atmosphere is still spirited, the clientele, fascinating; and the jukebox, bitchin’. (2800 Routh in the Quadrangle. Suite 247 871-1180 Mon-Sat 11:30 am-2 am. Sun 7 pm-2 am. Live jazz at lunch Wed-Sat. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7pm.MC. V.AE)
Greenville Avenue Country Club. Take one step inside the door of this low-key, easygoing place, and the name “country club” takes on a new meaning Drinks are served inside the “clubhouse,” where the surroundings are warm and comfortable But the only big shots at this country club are the ones poured into your glass. (3619 Greenville 826-5650. Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am. Sun noon-2 am MC. V.AE.)
Greenville Bar & Grill. Dallas’ oldest bar (or so its owners claim) now has a quieter adjoining room that somewhat alleviates the overcrowding. You may be more comfortable in the annex, especially if you want to carry on a conversation, but the rea/GB&G is still out in the boisterous main room The drinks are straight-up and strong, and the entertainment is eccentric and erratic. (2821 Greenville 823-6691 Mon-Sat 11 30am-2 am, Sun noon-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm AE.)
Hippopotamus. Far from the bright lights of Greenville Avenue, tucked inside the beautifully renovated Bradford Hotel, Hippopotamus offers a dark, soothing atmosphere and a New York-style piano bar. The large picture window looks out on the shimmering Hyatt Regency and the occasional passing strollers who-by Hippopotamus standards-are moving too fast. (302 S Houston at Jackson 761-9090 Daily 11 am-2 am Pianist: Tue-Sat 6-8 pm Happy hour: Mon-Fri4-7 pm. All credit cards.)
Joe Miller’s. This is a perfect late-afternoon bar for friendly conversation: It’s easy on the background music, soft on the lights and hard on the sledgehammer drinks that, along with the media crowd, have helped build Joe’s substantial reputation. But watch that third drink (3531 McKinney. 521-2261 Mon-Fri noon-2 am. Sat 6 pm-2 am MC. V, AE.)
Knox Street Pub. Over the years, this neighborhood bar has worn very, very well. It’s a slice of the Sixties (popular with Woodstock veterans and the work shirt-and-ieans set), but it attracts other folks as well Knox Street has its cadre of regulars, but there’s no cliquish spirit here. The menu is limited, but the fare is reasonably priced and substantial. (3230 Knox 526 9476 Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am, Sun 4 pm-midnight. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm. No credit cards)
La Cave. Ah. a place for lovers, for discussions and for good wine. This small, chic wine shop/bar has a walk-in cellar with a fine collection of foreign and domestic wines. A few dinner entrees are offered, but we suggest sticking to the cheese and the nut and fruit trays. (2926 N Henderson. 826-2190. Wine shop: Mon-Thur 10 am-11 pm. Fri 10 am-11:30 pm, Sat noon-11:30 pm. Bistro: Mon-Thur 11:30 am-2 pm & 5:30-11 pm, Fri 11.30 am-2pm & 5:30-11 30 pm, Sat noon- 11:30 pm. Closed Sun. All credit cards.)
Le Louvre. Dark and dimly lit, Le Louvre is a picture-perfect setting for a discreet rendezvous The heavy curtains shield the prying rays of the Texas sun, and martinis and strong highballs take the place of tutti-frutti drinks. An added bonus. The happy hour buffet is always spread with hors d’oeuvres. (9840 N Central Expressway 691-1177 Sun-Fri 11:30 am-2 am; Sat 6 pm-2 am. All credit cards)
The Lounge. This semi-art deco, semi-hi-tech retreat in the lobby of the Inwood Theatre is separated from the movies and the moviegoers by a wall of water and its own outside door. But the Lounge is sans ceiling, which allows patrons to share the view of the ocean-motif mural that floats high above the theater lobby. This is a wonderful place to discuss films-or just about anything-at great length. (5460 W Lovers Lane. 350-7834. Sun-Wed 5 pm-1 am, Thur-Sat 5pm-2am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri5-7pm. AE.)
Mariano’s. If nachos and frozen margaritas are your passion, Mariano’s is the place for you. Mariano’s remodeled bar is a bright, airy place to enjoy some of the best Tex-Mex munchies in town. The margaritas are so good that the mix is available for sale. Need we say more? (5500 Greenville. 691-3888. Mon-Thur 11:30 am-midnight, Fri & Sat 11:30 am-2 am. Sun 11 am-midnight. Happy hour: Mon-Sat 11:30 am-7 pm, Sun noon-7pm. MC, V.AE.)
Nostromo. Before venturing to Nostromo, it is advisable to have one or all of the following: (1) the looks of a New York model, (2) the clothes of a New York designer, (3) the blase countenance of a New York socialite or (4) an entourage. If the above applies, welcome to Nostromo. If not, good luck getting in without a wait, especially on Thursdays and weekends Nostromo offers the jet set and the would-be jet set strong drinks, good service and a stark, well-lit place to spread their feathers. (4515 Travis. 528-8880. Mon-Fri 11:30 am-2 am. Sat 6 pm-2 am. Sun 7 am-2 am. Reservations recommended. Jackets required after 6 pm. MC, V, AE.)
On the Air. Video addicts, rejoice! Death to conversationalists! Here you can sip your favorite drink and gawk at both the New Wave videos and the back of your companion (who has twisted around in his seat to see the big screen, too). The late-night Thai snacks – namely, the egg rolls and the stuffed chicken wings-are a giant step above bland bar eats, but don’t order the rubbery spicy noodles. (2114 Greenville. 827-6800. Mon-Thur 5 pm-2 am, Fri&Sat 7pm-3am, Sun 7 pm-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 5-7 pm. AE.)
The Palm Bar. This is a beautiful place for downtown workers to have an extended series of drinks. As hotel bars go. it is the most upscale in Dallas. Although you can’t reach the bar through the hotel, a walk through the Adolphus is worth the excursion. Or, if you prefer open spaces, have a drink in the lobby. (Adolphus Hotel, 1321 Commerce. 742-8200. Mon-Fri 11 am-7 pm. All credit cards.)
Peabody’s. Big bars, we’ve come to realize, are usually loud and impersonal. And institutional drinking can leave a patron feeling like little more than another Miller Lite along the wall or a faceless Seven and Seven at table 33. Peabody’s, while fairly roomy, is not of that genre. We spent a lengthy lunch chatting to our hearts content at a corner table, but our friendly waitress never faltered in bringing our ice-cold beers. We suspect that the comfortable couches and tables yield a relaxing ambiance in the evening as well. (4216 Oak Lawn. 559-3160. Mon- Thur 11 am-midnight, Fri & Sat 11 am-2 am. Sun noon-midnight. MC, V, AE)
The Quiet Man. This is the quintessential neighborhood bar, defined as one of those places you frequent only if you’re meeting some buddies to quaff some brews and swap some stories. A lone stranger here sticks out like a Ralph Lauren shirt. The Quiet Man lost some of its beer garden out front when Knox Street was widened a few years ago, but that just means that the regulars have to squeeze a bit closer together. (3120Knox. 526-6180. Tue-Sat noon-2am,Sun&Mon 4 pm-midnight. No credit cards.)
San Francisco Rose. When you’re relaxing at San Francisco Rose, it’s easy to feel as if you’re in someone’s living room rather than in a lower Greenville Avenue bar. Seating consists of cozy groupings of easy chairs and overstuffed Victorian sofas. Whether you’re alone or with a group, this arrangement lends itself to the cause. If, however, you’re looking for a place for an intimate conversation for two, you may be out of luck. (3024 Greenville. 826-2020. Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am, Sun noon-2 am. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm. All credit cards.)
SRO. We keep no secrets here SRO stands for “standing room only,” which is likely to become the case at this ever-so-black, ever-so-chichi nightclub trimmed in – did you guess?-pink neon. There is a wide variety of drinks, a peculiar assortment of food and the standard assortment of 30ish “trendies” who are doing more following than setting (2900 McKinney 748-5014 Daily 11 am-2am. MC, V. AE. DC.)
St. Martin’s. St. Martin’s has been among our favorite romantic nightspots for a long time. We don’t know of another place in town with such unassuming class, good service, pleasant classical music and an intelligent selection of wines (3020 Greenville- 826-0940 Lunch: Mon-Fri 11-3. Sat 11-5; dinner: Mon-Thur5-11. Fri & Sat 5 pm-1 am. Sun 5-11 pm. All credit cards.)
Stonelelgh P. This is an artist’s bar. And a businessman’s bar. And a construction worker’s bar. And a housewife’s night-out-on-the-town bar. And just about anyone’s bar. There are no pretenses here, just a lot of open space with room to “do your own thing.” There’s a great jukebox, a varied selection of magazines and always an interesting assortment of people. (2926 Maple. 741-0824. Mon-Sat 11 am-2am, Sun noon-midnight. Happy hour: Mon-Fri 4-7 pm. AE.)
Victory Feed Store. This deli/bar has an odd but appealing mixture of country and class. Wooden walls, a wooden floor and a hometown atmosphere are combined with burgundy vinyl booths and slick black table-tnns in what turns out to be a very pleasant watering hole. Vickery has good drinks, great den/snacK toou and some of the friendliest service in town. (6918 Greenville. 363-9198 Mon 6 am-midnight, Tue-Fri 6 am-2 am, Sat 8 am-2 am, Sun 8 am-midnight. Happy hour Mon-Sat 3-7pm, Sun noon-7pm. MC. V, AE.)
The Wine Press. This is the perfect place to go on a chilly, damp winter night-or any time when you’re looking for romance, intimacy and spirits. The Wine Press is decorated with wine bottles from floor to ceiling on almost every wall. The atmosphere is low-key and elegantly casual; the service, friendly but not hovering; the wine selection, extensive – to say the least. (4217 Oak Lawn. 522-8720 Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am. Sun 11:30 am-2 am. All credit cards.)
Zanzibar Dell. A fresh face on the burger-spattered strip of lower Greenville Avenue, Zanzibar offers drinks and good deli food in a colorful cafe setting. The decor- neon, glass bricks and pink-and-green walls-is odd enough to work. (2912 Greenville. 828-2250. Sun 11 am-midnight. Mon-Thur 11:30 am-2 am. Fri & Sat 11:30 am-3:30am. Happy hour: Daily 4-7 pm MC AE.)
PORT WORTH NIGHTLIFE
Billy Bob’s Texas. Bigger does not always mean best, and that’s quite evident at the world’s largest honky-tonk. 01 course, this novelty club has a lot going for it; two restaurants, 42 bar stations, a real bull-riding arena on, Billy Bob’s is the last place you’d want to be – unless. of course, you’re partial to being trampled by thousands of people (the club can hold 6,000) and you don’t mind paying a two-digit admission charge that affords you a view of the rafters. (2520 N Commerce in the stockyards. Metro 429-5979. Mon-Sat 9:30 am-2 am, Sun noon-2 am. Reduced cover charge Mon-Sat 4-8 pm. MC. V, AE.)
Blossoms Downstairs. This live music club is the downstairs half of the restaurant of the same name. The likes of hometown hero Delbert McClinton and Roomful of Blues, an East Coast swing-jazz band, can be found here, along with an assortment of regulars. The dance floor is large enough to move around on, but watch out for the low ceiling. The restaurant upstairs offers a generous happy hour buffet, and on most nights, a soft-rock trio performs. (5201 Camp Bowie. (817) 732-2082. Sun- Thur 8 pm-2 am, Fri & Sat 9 pm-2 am. Happy hour: daily 8-9 pm. MC, V, AE.)
The Blue Blrd. Even when the band’s not playing, you’ll feel like dancing at The Blue Bird: The jukebox is the best in Fort Worth. But then, the patrons of this near-Southside club dont want that to get around; they know a good thing when they find it. The club is packed nearly every weekend, with regulars dancing to the infectious rhythm of Robert Ealey and the Bluesblasters. This is rhythm and blues at its finest, but sssshhh! (5636 Wellesley. (817) 732-6243 Fri & Sat 7 pm-2 am. No credit cards.)
Cheers. Don’t expect Ted Danson or Shelley Long to be among this club’s crowd: This Confettilike dancery is a far cry from the sophisticated wit of TVs Boston bar. Female bartenders wear flesh-colored Danskin tights, skimpy leotards and baseball hats, and there’s enough paper confetti around to make you want to save a tree. By the looks of the crowd on the Tuesday night we visited, this is a good place for single women: The ratio of guys to gals was about 10 to 1. (6773 Camp Bowie, Fort Worth. (817) 735-8814. Daily 11 am-2am. All credit cards.)
The Hop. The Hop, a longtime Fort Worth institution, has pizza, spaghetti and all kinds of music, from rock to jazz to the country/folk sound of songwriters B.W. Stevenson and Steve Fromholz. The atmosphere is casual and comfortable. (2905 W Berry. (817) 923-7281 Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am, Sun 4 pm-2 am. Happy hour: Mon, Tue& Thur-Sat 2-7pm, all day Wed. MC, V, AE, DC.)
The Plckln’ Parlour. Just up the road from the popular White Elephant Saloon is a club that is unusually devoid of the hordes of Yankees who invade this touristy area each weekend. The reason? They take their beer drinkin’ and two-steppin’ seriously here, folks. Those who cant get their feet to move to the one-two, one-two-three beat get lost in the shuffle. There’s no room on the dance floor for lessons, either. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll never go back to rock ’n’ roll. (103 W Exchange in the stockyards. (817) 624-2592. Tue-Sat 5 pm-1.30 am. Closed Sun & Mon. No credit cards.)
Spencer’s Beverly Hills. If you’ve been missing disco, don’t worry: Saturday night fever is alive and well and living in Fort Worth. The disco-crazed crowd gathers here most every night to shake their stuff and to watch widescreen movies such as Fast Times at Ridgemont High. The drinks are heavy-handed – as are some of the regulars-but most patrons don’t seem to mind. (1724 South University. (817) 332-5651. Daily 4 pm-2 am. No credit cards.)
The White Elephant Saloon. In 1887. Luke Short,then the owner of the White Elephant, shot it out with aformer U.S. marshal. Today, the Elephant has country/Western music six nights a week and lots of touriststrying desperately to learn the two-step on a smalldance floor. (106 E Exchange. (817) 624-8273 Mon-Sat 11 am-2 am. Closed Sun. MC. V, AE.)
Carols by Candlelight. TCU’s traditional carol sing-along, “Carols by Candlelight,” is Dec 12 at 10:30 pm in Robert Carr Chapel on the TCU campus. Free. (817) 921-7810.
Celebration of Lights. SMU’s seventh annual Celebration of Lights will feature performances by the Christmas story by the university’s president and. of course, the traditional lighting of Dallas Hall, SMU’s Christmas tree and the main quadrangle. Following the ceremony will be a reception in the rotunda of Dallas Hall. Dec 4 at 7:30 pm in the main quadrangle in front of Dallas Hall, SMU. 692-2079.
Christmas Dinner with Charles Dickens. A holiday evening out of a Victorian novel is offered by North Texas State University when it hosts a “Christmas Dinner with Charles Dickens and His Friends,” Dec 8 at 7 pm. Dickens’ Pub will be open before dinner, and the meal itself will feature roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. Highlighting the evening will be Victorian music and dramatized scenes and readings from Dickens’ work. Tickets $12. (817) 565-2656.
Dallas Tree Lighting. The annual lighting of Dallas’ holiday tree will be Dec 1 at 7 pm at City Hall. Following the lighting will be a musical performance and a children’s parade to Old City Park, where festivities will continue. 670-3957.
DeGolyer Estate. This historical Dallas manor is open during the holiday season for walking tours. This year, tours will be conducted Dec 10-18 from 1-4 pm, with evening tours Dec 15 & 16 from 6-9 pm. DeGolyer Estate, 8525 Garland Rd. Tickets $2; $1 for senior citizens and children under 2. 324-1401.
Fort Worth Tree Lighting. The city Christmas tree, a 50-foot Douglas fir decorated with 3,000 lights, will be lit Nov 25 at 6 pm on Main Street between 8th and 9th streets. In addition, a parade through downtown Fort Worth to the lighting site will be at 5:30 pm, and musical performances and other festivities will follow the tree lighting. Tree lighting information: (817) 870-7004; parade information: (817) 827-1692.
Holiday Lights Tour. Citran bus tours to view the holiday lights of Fort Worth will be Dec 17 & 18. Tickets $2; children under 5 free. Call (817) 870-6200 for tour times and information.
Jefferson Christmas Candlelight Tour. Four of Jefferson’s historic buildings will be open for this holiday tour on Dec 1-3 from 6-9:30 pm. In addition, the “Victorian Christmas Play” will be presented by the Presbyterian Church. Tour tickets $5; $1 for children 12 and under; available at McGaritys Saloon, No. 61 Dallas St., Jefferson. Play tickets $4; $1 for children 12 and under. 1-665-8390
Kappa Kappa Gamma Homes Tour. Four Park Cities houses will be open for the annual Christmas tour sponsored by Kappa Kappa Gamma, Dec 7 & 8 from 10 am-4 pm. The tour’s proceeds will benefit Dallas Services for the Visually Impaired and Sequoia Inc., a nonprofit organization that helps retarded citizens. Tickets $5; available in advance from any KKG alumna or at the Kappa Christmas Store in the University Park Methodist Church, Preston at Greenbrier, on tour days 368-0116 or 692-0205.
McKlnney Christmas Tour of Homes. The 12th annual tour sponsored by the Heritage Guild of Collin County will be Dec 3 & 4. Featured on the tour will be four historic homes in the Chestnut Square Historical District and a selection of privately owned homes. Tickets $5; $1 for children 5-12; children under 5 free. 1-542-0163.
Million-Dollar Pecan Tree. Each holiday season, three large trees on Armstrong Parkway in Highland Park are decorated with lights. One of these, the “Million-Dollar Pecan Tree,” will be ablaze with 2,000 lights. This year’s tree lighting is Dec 13 at 7:30 pm, and caroling will follow the lighting ceremony. 521-4161.
Old City Park. A winter festival highlighting the years 1840 to 1910 will be celebrated in Old City Park Dec 1-4. Opening ceremonies Dec 1 at City Hall will be followed by a candlelight ceremony at 7:45 pm. In addition, candlelight tours of the park will be conducted Dec 1 & 2 from 6-9 pm and Dec 3 & 4 from 3-9 pm. Tour tickets $5; $2 for persons under 12 or 65 and older; children under 3 free. Dallas Surrey Services will offer short rides originating in the park each day of the festival. Surrey tickets $2: $1.50 for children under 10. 946-9911.
Piano Holiday Tour of Homes. Five Piano homes willbe decorated in festive glory during Piano’s sixth annualHoliday Tour of Homes. The tour, sponsored by thePiano branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) is Dec 3 & 4 from 11 am-5 pm.Tickets $4 in advance, available from any AAUWmember or from participating florists; $5 on tour days,available at each tour home. 424-3212 or 596-1592.
Richardson Christmas Parade. The 12th annualChristmas parade sponsored by the RichardsonChamber of Commerce will begin at 9 am on Dec 3.The parade, which will start at Richardson High School,Belt Line at Coit in Richardson, will feature about 250float entries. 234-4141.