Rants, raves, reviews and resources for Dallas-Fort Worth parents

Friday Freebies: Fourth of July preview

06/22/2011 6:00 AM

06/16/2011 5:22 PM

Here's an early look at Independence Day festivities (a bigger list to come next week) for your planning pleasure, some indoor activities to keep you cool and a slew of ongoing summer fun in the Dallas/Fort Worth area:

1. Roanoke 3rd Rocks: Aside from the fabulous fireworks display, there will also be live music by The Party Crashers, bounce houses, a rock climbing wall and a children's train!
Good to know:  For $3, you can get a brisket sandwich or hot dog, chips and drink
Recommended ages: All
When: 6 p.m., Sunday, July 3
Where: Roanoke Community Park, 201 Park Drive, Roanoke, TX
Cost: FREE!

2. 29th Annual Fireworks Extravaganza: Be prepared to be astonished by the fireworks spectacular, which can be viewed from any lakeside location as well as several other spots throughout Grapevine.
Good to know: Admission is free at most viewing locations, but some parks along Lake Grapevine may charge a minimal admission fee. Fireworks will continue rain or shine.
Recommended ages: All
When: 9:30 p.m., Monday, July 4
Where: Lake Grapevine, Grapevine, Texas (NOTE: Beginning at 9:15 p.m., Fairway Drive between State Highway 26 East and Silveron Blvd. will be shut down through the duration of the fireworks show.)
Cost: FREE!

3. Parents Tour: Pack up the baby stroller and join the tour designed to introduce new parents (with babies in tow) to a variety of artworks at the Amon Carter Museum. Refreshments will be provided after the program. Tour begins at the Information Desk.
Good to know: Reservations are not required, but parents can call 817-989-5030 to receive helpful instructions
Recommended ages: 4 and younger
When: 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Friday, June 24
Where: Amon Carter Museum, 3501 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth
Info: 817-989-5030, ,
Cost: FREE!

4. Tommy Terrific's Wacky Passport Magic Show: Children will be screaming with laughter at Tommy Terrific's unique blend of laugh-out-loud comedy and magic.
Recommended ages: 11 and younger
When: 2 p.m., Saturday, June 25
Where: NorthCourt, between Nordstrom and Macy's beneath AMC NorthPark 15 theatres, at NorthPark Shopping Center, 8687 North Central Expressway, Dallas
Cost: FREE

5. Simon Kidgits Safe Summer: Learn summer safety tips from the Hurst Police and Fire Departments and take a tour of several safety vehicles including a Fire truck, police car, police Motorcycle and other first responder vehicles. McGruff the Crime Dog will also be on hand for visits and photos. Children cal participate in hands-on craft activities.
Recommended ages: All
When: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 25
Where: Center Court, North East Mall, 1101 Melbourne St. Ste 1000, Hurst, TX 76053
Info: 817-589-9603
Cost: FREE!

6. NOT FREE, BUT GOOD: Reebok 2011 Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game: Didn't go to the Victory Parade? Cheer on (and congratulate) your World Champion Dallas Mavericks at this event, which benefits the children’s charities of The Heroes Foundation and The Mike Modano Foundation. Two baseball teams will each be made up of 10 or more celebrities. Scheduled appearances include Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Dallas Cowboys linebacker Bradie James, Mavericks point guard Jason Kidd, NHL All-Star Mike Modano, Mavericks president Donnie Nelson, former NFL All-Pro Warren Sapp, former Dallas Cowboys player Everson Walls, Dallas Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware, Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten and more.
Good to know: Roster subject to change.
Recommended ages: All
When: 6 p.m., Saturday, July 9
Where: Dr Pepper Ballpark, 7300 RoughRiders Trail, Frisco, TX 75034
Cost: $5-$15 at Ticketmaster, 800-745-3000 or, or at the Dr Pepper Ballpark Box Office during office hours. Will call will open at 10 a.m. the day of the game. Tickets also will be sold at the door the day of the game.

Movies in the Park: Don't forget your blankets and lawn chairs to this family-friendly movie night in Weatherford. The last movie in the series is Justin Bieber, Never Say Never, June 25. Along with the Never Say Never showing, the Weatherford Swim Team will be hosting a Justin Bieber look-a-like contest to win two 2011 season passes to the Cherry Park Pool.
Good to know: Concessions will be open and restroom facilities will be available.
Recommended ages: All
When: At dusk, around 9 p.m. on Saturdays through June 25.
Where: Balls Fields at Holland Lake Park, 1419 Holland Lake Road, Weatherford, TX 76086-5862
Cost: FREE!

Stars Under the Stars: Free movies will be shown each Thursday night through June 30 in Sundance Square. Beverages, popcorn and sweets are available at a snack-bar area. Guests are allowed to bring "to-go" food from area restaurants, as well as chairs or blankets to sit on. If you get there early (8 p.m.), kids can climb a rock wall.
Good to know: No pets or outside coolers. Folding chairs will also be available for a $2 rental fee. Parking is free after 5 p.m. at all Sundance Square parking lots. The last two movies in the series are The Bucket List, June 23 and Seabiscuit, June 30.
Recommended ages: All
When: Seating begins at 7 p.m.; movie begins at dusk, around 9 p.m., June 2
Where: Chisholm Trail parking lot, Fourth and Main Streets, Fort Worth
Info:  817-255-5700, Read more
Cost: FREE!

Family Film Festival: Watch a G- or PG-rated film with your kids for free every Tuesday and Wednesday morning. Here's the movie schedule: Live Large, June 28 and 29; Ramona and Beezus, July 5 and 6; The Lighting Thief, July 12 and 13; Chronicles of Narnia, July 19 and 20; and Gulliver's Travels, July 26 and 27.
Good to know: Attendees can save $1 on the purchase of a Rave Movie Meal deal.
Recommended ages: All
When: Doors open at 9:30 a.m. Movies begin at 10 a.m., Tuesday and Wednesdays through July 27
Where: Rave Motion Pictures at NorthEast Mall, 1101 Melbourne Road, Hurst, TX 76053
Info: 817-591-8540,
Cost: FREE!

Storytime at the Amon Carter: The program brings the museum’s artworks to life through engaging children’s stories and related art activities. A drawing will be held at the conclusion of the eight-week series. Perfect attendance throughout the summer makes your child eligible to win all the titles – 24 free books – read during Storytime.For information on books, go to
Good to know: Reservations are not required, but parents can call 817-989-5030 to receive helpful instructions.
Recommended ages: 5 and younger
When: 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 22, June 29, July 6, July 13, July 20 and July 27
Where: Amon Carter Museum, 3501 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth
Info: 817-989-5030, ,For
Cost: FREE!

2-for-1 Exhibit Tuesdays: The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is offering a great deal during the summer months. Every Tuesday through August 30 is 2-for-1 admission. Bring the whole family to experience the new aviation exhibit, "Ascent…When Dreams Defy Gravity, and Champions."
Good to know: The second admission must be of equal or lesser value. Cannot be combined with any other offer. Does not apply to Omni Theater or Noble Planetarium tickets.
Recommended ages: All
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesdays through August 30.
Where: Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, 1600 Gendy St., Fort Worth, TX 76107
Info: 817-255-9540,
Cost: $14, adults; $10, children (ages 2-12) and seniors (age 60+). Museum members are free.

Friday Fireworks: Every Friday night throughout the summer, you can feast your eyes on a 12-minute fireworks display that can be seen from any Lake Grapevine Park.
Good to know: Best viewing locations are your favorite lake parks or on top of the parking garage at the Gaylord Texan Resort for the Garage Rock Out Party.
Recommended ages: All
When: 9:30 p.m. Fridays through Labor Day.
Where: Lake Grapevine, Grapevine, Texas
Cost: FREE!

Check Maricar's Friday Freebies blog every week for a list of free things to do in the Dallas/Fort Worth area! To submit your own Friday Freebie, add a comment to her blog or send your submissions at least one week before the date of the event to with the subject line: "Friday Freebies"

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