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Our Favorite Fall Family-Friendly Outings in Dallas

October 15, 2018 by Mary McKinny
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The air is crisp, the leaves are crispier, and there’s practically always something to celebrate in the autumn. Why not do it as a family? Here are a few of our favorite family-friendly outings to check out this fall.

Dallas Arboretum (Courtesy of VisitDallas)

Autumn at the Arboretum
Dallas Arboretum
Through Nov. 21, kiddos can wander through a village constructed of thousands (as in, more than 90,000) pumpkins, squashes, and gourds at this celebrated annual event, which also showcases an abundance of chrysanthemums and stunning, fall-blooming plants. The theme this year is “The Adventures in Neverland,” and you’ll get to see everything from the Darling house in London to the Lost Boys’ hideout to Tinker Bell’s home — all made out of pumpkins.

Halloweekend (Photo courtesy of Dallas Zoo)

Halloweekend
Dallas Zoo
For two days, Oct. 27 and 28, the zoo gets a spooky makeover with a spider-themed hay maze, a scarecrow-filled pumpkin patch, and trick-or-treating stations all across the zoo (costumes are encouraged). Special activities, games, and animal encounters are planned at the Children’s Zoo, and it wouldn’t be Halloween without a visit from creepy-crawly critters like snakes, newts, and toads in the Herpetarium.

(Photo Courtesy of TITAS)

TITAS
AT&T Performing Arts Center, Moody Performance Hall
For 36 years, TITAS Presents has brought the coolest, most diverse, and most remarkable dance artists touring the world today to Dallas. Stephen Petronio comes from The Joyce Theater in New York Oct. 19-20 to bring his modern blend of new music, visual art, and provocative fashion. Aspen Santa Fe Ballet arrives with pianist Joyce Yang on Oct. 26-27, presenting Jiří Kylián’s poetic “Return to a Strange Land” (danced en pointe), Nicolo Fonte’s exhilarating “Where We Left Off,” and a brand-new commission by Boston Ballet’s choreographer-in-residence, Jorma Elo. Complexions is the final TITAS performance for 2018, bringing unity to the world one dance at a time through groundbreaking work from co-founders Dwight Thoden and Desmond Richardson.

“A Christmas Carol” (Photographed by Karen Almond)

A Christmas Carol
Dallas Theater Center
Artistic director Kevin Moriarty’s adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic incorporates live music, flying ghosts, and a few surprises. The concept and cast change each year, and audiences have learned to expect the unexpected when it comes to this holiday tradition, which begins on Nov. 21.

“The Nutcracker” (Courtesy of Texas Ballet Theater)

The Nutcracker
Texas Ballet Theatre
Step into this Christmas dream, playing first in Dallas at the Winspear Opera House Nov. 23-Dec. 2 and then next to Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth, Dec. 7-24. Join Clara and her prince as they battle the Mouse King and then visit a land of sweets, where the Sugarplum Fairy and her friends are waiting to entertain.

“A Christmas Story: The Musical” (Photographed by Gary Emord Netzley)

A Christmas Story: The Musical
AT&T Performing Arts Center
The 1983 film comes to life onstage at the Winspear Opera House Dec. 12-16, complete with a score from the composers behind “Dear Evan Hansen” and “The Greatest Showman,” Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Watch as little Ralphie pursues his Christmas wish of an official Red Ryder Carbine-Action 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle, and laugh as an infamous leg lamp, outrageous pink bunny pajamas, a maniacal department store Santa, and a triple-dog-dare to lick a freezing flagpole thwart his dream.