Dance, Theater, and Music

Sambuca

“One of the few places in Dallas where you can hear live music seven nights a week.”—Malcolm Mayhew, contributing columnist, Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Uptown supper club has an open courtyard; hosts local and national jazz, soft rock, and Latin musicians; past performers include Branford Marsalis and Norah Jones. 2120 McKinney Ave. tel. +1 214 744 0820. www.sambucarestaurant.com

Sons of Hermann Hall

A genuine old-fashioned dance hall, with hardwood floors, a big, sparkly ball over the dance floor and killer country/roots-rock bands. If you don't have a great time here, you may want to go to the doctor. 3414 Elm St. tel. +1 214 747 4422. www.sonsofhermann.com

House of Blues

“They get all the biggies—from Joe Ely to the Go-Go's to Interpol. Good nachos, too.”—Malcolm Mayhew. Huge live music venue; 60,000-square-foot (5,574-square-meter) space can hold 1,600 people. 2200 North Lamar St. tel. +1 214 978 2583. www.hob.com

Dallas Theater Center

“North Texas’ best-known regional theater presents classics, new works, and American standards in one of the few theaters that Frank Lloyd Wright designed.”—Mark Lowry, theater critic, Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The company is located in the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts. 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. tel. +1 214 522 8499. www.dallastheatercenter.org

Bath House Cultural Center

“The city-owned art center hosts interesting visual art exhibits and a number of fringe theater groups.”—Mark Lowry. Art deco building, built in 1930 as a bathhouse, sits on the banks of White Rock Lake; includes a theater, gallery spaces, and darkroom; site of the summer Festival of Independent Theatres. 521 East Lawther Dr. tel. +1 214 670 8749. www.bathhousecultural.com

WaterTower Theatre

“The most dynamic performing space in the Metroplex.”—Mark Lowry. Professional theater in the North Dallas suburb of Addison has a flexible performance space that adapts to fit any production. Season includes classic and contemporary works, plus the Out of the Loop Festival with dance, music, theater, and visual art. 15650 Addison Rd. in Addison; tel. +1 972 450 6232. www.watertowertheatre.org

Nightlife

Ivy Lounge

“For the ultimate Dallas Bar Experience—garish, over-the-top, blonde.”—Malcolm Mayhew, contributing columnist, Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Tri-level club on top of the Dallas Roof Gardens building has three different bars and views of the gardens. 1217 Main St. tel. + 1 214 760 9000.

The Old Monk

“Have a beer in a quiet, warm atmosphere, without some band blaring at you.”—Malcolm Mayhew. A European-style pub that’s famous for its beef stew. 2847 North Henderson Ave. tel. + 1 214 821 1880. www.oldmonkdallas.com

The Ghostbar

“It confirms every Dallas stereotype, and then some: Boobs, bottle service, and buffoonery.”—Eric Celeste, managing editor, D Magazine. Modern, metallic rooftop lounge on the 33rd floor of the W Hotel Victory Park; downtown views from the glass floor “ghostdeck.” 2440 Victory Park Ln. tel. + 1 214 720 9909. www.starwoodhotels.com

Meridian Room

“Fantastic vibe, across from Fair Park. You half-expect Sinatra to stroll in.”—Eric Celeste. Live music or DJ most nights; try the signature cocktail, The SCZA—a blend of vanilla vodka, coconut rum, and pineapple juice. 3611 Parry Ave. tel. +1 214 826 8383. www.themeridianroom.com

Lakewood Landing

“Best dive bar in East Dallas; the Dixie Chicks have been known to play pool there.”—Eric Celeste. Worth the trip for the jukebox, loaded with eclectic offerings, including plenty of Johnny Cash. 5818 Live Oak St. tel. +1 214 823 2410. www.lakewood-landing.com

Festivals

Savor Dallas

Early March. This ambitious food-and-drink festival takes place at venues across Dallas, with seminars in hotel meeting rooms. Tip: Buy tickets well in advance for best dinners and wine tastings. Tel. 866 277 7920. www.savordallas.com

Dallas Blooms

March and April. The Dallas Arboretum sparkles with hundreds of thousands of tulips, azaleas, and other colorful spring blossoms. Tel. +1 214 515 6500. www.dallasarboretum.org

State Fair of Texas

Late September-mid-October. Three weeks of Lone Star fun—rodeo, prize-winning horses, cattle and pigs, foods from around the state, midway rides, and carnival games; also dance programs, ice skating performances, country music concerts, and football games. Tel. +1 214 565 9931; fee. www.bigtex.com

White Rock Marathon

Early December. Two hundred thousand spectators gather to cheer on more than 12,000 runners in one of the nation’s largest foot races. Tel. +1 972 322 1835. www.runtherock.com

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