Dallas: White Rock Lake, North Texas Irish Festival, and more

Time continues to flow quickly by in Dallas! With upcoming family visits and a couple area trips planned, we've added a week to our stay. Here is some of what we've found to enjoy over the last couple week.

White Rock Lake (above): Not the largest lake near Dallas, but it's centrally located and sizable enough for jogging and biking. Nine miles of trails surround the lake and pedestrian bridges, boardwalks, and a variety of birds make jogging a scenic experience. A large dog park sits on the north side and nearby kayak trucks rent boats out in hourly increments. Once I recover from a jog I took earlier this week, I'm hoping to head back for another and some picture taking. Wouldn't might getting back in a kayak either since I left mine in Tennessee. A 4 million dollar boathouse was recently approved for the middle of the lake.

Dallas Farmer's Market: In my first post on Dallas, I mentioned how many of the city's best attractions are recently completed or works in progress. The Farmer's Market is no different. It was built in 1941 but will soon be in the middle of some serious upgrades. The buildings at the market are broken up into "local" and "produce resellers" so you know where your food is coming from and who you're supporting. It's the closest produce seller to our apartment so we've been multiple times.

Fair Park and North Texas Irish Festival: -- When I think of fairgrounds I think of a field or a parking lot, maybe a few barn-like buildings. This is the site of the Dallas Fair, but it's nothing like this. Year round it's the site of multiple museums like the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, the Children's Aquarium,  and Texas Discovery Gardens. There are
music venues at the park the host larger events like the Warped Tour, Dave Matthews, and others.


We went to Fair Park for the North Irish Texas Festival-- it was huge! Eight large stages in buildings filled with vendors and games.

Lindsay with beer at Sundown at Grenada and its parking lot since (I was asked to remove the photo of the building by the photographer)
Greenville Street: If uptown is pretentious and Deep Ellum is grunge, Greenville Avenue is somewhere in between. Clusters of bars are broken up on the street by large stretches of houses. You drive from cluster to cluster or just pick one and stay. Greenville Ave is the site of the Dallas Irish Parade and music venue, Sundown at Grenada where we went to have a snack and check out the area.

Nasher Sculpture Center: Having recently been to the Grounds for Sculpture in NJ, this was a letdown, but it's hardly their fault. Neat little sculpture center in the middle of the arts district. Amusing point of interest was the piece "tending blue" by James Turrell which was closed by the artist because of a recent highrise that obstructed the view from the inside of the sculpture. The center also holds midnight community events like movies among the sculptures-- so we may head back.

10 Years/Trees: Apparently named for the tree-like beams that run inside of the venue, Trees in Deep Ellum has a number of great rock shows and seems more reasonably priced than House of Blues. 

The Magnolia Theater:  Magnolia theaters exist in big cities all over the country, but this was our first experience with them. This theater in uptown combines the eat-in feel with indie films. We went to see "A Place at the Table", a new food film by the makers of Food Inc. The theater also hosts fun events like Rocky Horror, late-night showings of indie films, and movies played during the upcoming Dallas International Film Festival.

Austin: So, obviously Austin isn't a geographic part of Dallas, but for us, it's related. We wanted to live in Austin, but because it wasn't available, we chose nearby Dallas. We recently took an overnight trip to the city shortly before it was overrun by SXSW Music Festival. We had a great time listening to free music on 6th St, watching the bats stream out from under the Congress Avenue Bridge, and hiking on Mount Bonnell. We're planning to go back soon, so more on this later.