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Culture / Entertainment

The Weekend Guru

5 Surprising Things to do in Houston — Hometown Hip-Hop Party Included

BY // 03.25.17

Editor’s Note: Houston’s weekends are packed full of events, but how many of them are truly worthy of your time? After taking last week off for spring break, PaperCity’s Matthew Ramirez returns to cut through the clutter to give you the best options in this weekly series.

Issa Fair
Everywhere you turn in Houston another neighborhood is popping up, another old neighborhood is being “updated” (to put it mildly), or there’s a new stretch of land devoted to one industry or another (oil, medical, banking, museums, etc). The “new” energy corridor off I-10 has just landed its first major cultural event, however: Sarah Lowe of The Art Cellar of Houston in collaboration with Guerra Studios founder Marco Guerra are proudly presenting the inaugural Art-Is-An Outdoor Market fair, which curates dozens of artists, artisans, purveyors, and pop ups, from Houston and the greater region

Artists of all media – acrylics, alcohol inks, watercolor, giclee prints, crochet, candles, jewelry, soaps, and so on, will take over Republic Square, a repurposed 35-acre office site that’s been converted into an event and recreational space, complete with trails and a lake. Participants include: A Patton Fine Art, Sweet Olive Studios, CultGrrrl Creations, The Paper Carousel, and many more.

The market kicks off Saturday, 11 am to 6 pm, rain or shine, and is 100 percent free. Republic Square is located at 13501 Katy Freeway.

Another Round for Project Row House
Round 46 of the profound Project Row Houses arts initiative opens Saturday at 4 pm, and as always the art galleries double as community space for dialogue. This round takes the seven houses and turns them into spaces examining black art and black life in America, led by Black Women Artists for Black Lives Matter.

The opening event will bring remarks from executive director Eureka Gilkey and an intro to the round by public art director Ryan Dennis and acclaimed artist Simone Leigh leads to a procession through the neighborhood. The construction of a living altar on Holman as an offering to the Third Ward and a performance on the themes that affect black and brown lives the most — home, displacement, access to clean water, and police violence — are also on tap. The round begins Saturday and is on view through June 4.

Underground Kings
The fourth installment of the monthly Bounce and Turn party temporarily changes venues from Wonky Power Records off Navigation to a warehouse located just off Washington. Bounce and Turn (named in honor of Houston rap legend Lil Keke) is a homegrown monthly party celebrating all things local in hip-hop, with free drinks to boot. (After you pay $5 at the door — did we mention it’s also BYOB?)

This month features TAME, aka The Aspiring Me, son of Houston legend Big Mello (R.I.P.) as headliner, performing fresh off his dope recent record 98 Briargate & 11 Almeda. By changing venues, Bounce and Turn can start to unravel its tentacles across the city and become as much of a staple in the scene as Avant Garden Wednesdays or Waxaholics night at Alley Kat.

Tickets are $5; doors open at 8 pm; the warehouse space is located at 2122 Center Street.

You the Real MVP
As we enter the home stretch of the regular NBA season, one thing remains up in the air: Who will win the league MVP award? The Oklahoma City Thunder’s acrobatic point guard Russell Westbrook puts up gaudy numbers every night, and is a lock to be the first player since Oscar Robertson to average a triple double for a season. But Rockets star James Harden gets my vote, by leading a team most thought would hover around .500 to the third seed in the deadly Western Conference, while posting better, more efficient numbers, and leading the league in assists, producing more total points per game than Westbrook.

It’s a fun, sports nerdy conversation to have, but Harden’s almost undeniably the better player; the question is, does Westbrook’s flashy statistical season mean anything beyond the numbers? Find out for yourself as the Rockets take on the Thunder, Sunday, 2:30 pm, at the Toyota Center, in a nationally televised game (where both stars will hopefully play).

Expect Westbrook to get a triple double; expect Harden to get the Rockets a win, and more fuel for his MVP campaign. Ticket prices vary.

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