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Labor Day 2020 Roundup

Haley Kurisky
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House of Cards

House of Cards at Discovery Green is a public-art piece by Israel-based design studio OGE Group consisting of 126 oversized playing cards, each of which features a unique piece of artwork. (Photo: OGE Group)

Despite the pandemic, you and your family can still make Labor Day weekend special. I’ve put together a list of activities and specials occurring during Labor Day weekend along with some destinations and suggestions if you’re trying to plan out your time. 

Arts & entertainment @ Discovery Green
The new Flip the Switch exhibit at Discovery Green features 70 LED light fixtures suspended from a tree canopy, above the northwest corner of the park. The feature is meant to evoke memories of playing pick-up sticks as a child. And it’s free to see! In addition, the new House of Cards installation, a public-art piece consisting of 126 oversized playing cards, each of which features a unique piece of artwork, is now open to the public too.

Adventures @ Memorial Park Conservancy
If you want a change of scenery (literally), head over to the new section of Memorial Park - the Clay Family Eastern Glades. This new section of the park is 100 acres large, and consists of reclaimed parkland, previously inaccessible to the public. There are wetlands, trails, boardwalks, plaques/signs with historical and ecological information, and so much more. There are picnic areas and pavilions too if you’d like to stay a spell. Plus (all the native Houstonians will be most excited about this), the park has free public parking and restrooms! Learn more about the area here.  

Dragons exhibit

The Dragons exhibit at the Houston Zoo walks guests through folklore and pop culture as it recreates “famous” reptilian creatures on a mega scale. Pictured is Haley Kurisky, masked-up in front of a “water dragon.” 

Explore @ Houston Zoo
The Zoo is open over Labor Day weekend! The Zoo is currently promoting their “Dragons” exhibit, presented by TXU Energy. The exhibit ends on Sept. 27. You may not think dragons would be interesting, but I went to the Zoo a few months ago and was pleasantly surprised - the Dragons exhibit is really cool and engaging! Purchase your Zoo tickets online (there are max tickets sold every hour). Masks are required. Also, be sure to say hello to the new baby elephant and giraffe! 

Browse @ Urban Harvest Farmers Market 
Every Saturday, Urban Harvest hosts a farmers market in the parking lot across from St. John’s, and Saturday of Labor Day weekend is no exception! Chris Shepherd and Underbelly Hospitality have been showing up recently to deliver famous Chris Shepherd meals in packable, to-go portions. 

Drive-in Movie @ Sawyer Yards
Brought to you by Rooftop Cinema Club, movie fans can see a drive-in movie at nearby Sawyer Yards. Movies are being shown all Labor Day weekend, and include films Jumanji, 10 Things I Hate About You, and The Sandlot. See the schedule and buy your tickets here.

Soak in nature @ the Arboretum 
Hit the trails to soak in some beauty and experience an escape from city life while staying safely socially distanced. The Arboretum grounds and trails are open daily from 7 a.m. to dusk. See more about the trails here. Or choose to enjoy a virtual event from home. The Arboretum is offering Sustainability & South American Wines, a virtual wine tasting, Sept. 2, 6-7:30 pm. Supplies (including three bottles of wine, two Arboretum wine classes, a charcuterie starter kit, and educational resources for the class) cost $95 for non-members, and can be picked up Saturday-Wednesday before the class. Such a steal! Ages 21+. Or consider a virtual cooking class on Sept. 5, 1-3 p.m. Learn how to make honey and blue cheese fruit crostini and salted almond honey no-churn ice cream. Supplies can be picked up on Thursday or Friday prior to the event, and cost $45 for non-members.  

Beach escape in Galveston 
Galveston is open, including for Labor Day weekend! Masks are being enforced around the city, and many of the attractions, including Moody Gardens, Pleasure Pier, and Schlitterbahn are open, with limitations. Check out more information about the island’s safety precautions here. Pleasure Pier in Galveston is offering a special for Labor Day. All weekend, the “Three Parks, One Pass” option is available: For $39.99, guests can enjoy unlimited visits all weekend to Pleasure Pier, Kemah Boardwalk, and the Houston Aquarium.

Plan a getaway @ Summer Lagoonfest 
In La Marque, outside of Houston on the way to Galveston, Lago Mar recently opened its 12-acre Crystal Lagoons to the public. Tickets are $10 for children and $15 for adults over 13. Covid guidelines are being enforced (including social distancing and enhanced sanitization) and capacity is limited!  


Hiking and/or camping is a socially distanced activity perfect for close friends or family. Here, Haley is pictured on a recent camping trip near Austin. 

Camping @ Brazos Bend State Park
Nearby Brazos Bend State Park, located less than an hour outside of the city, is a wonderful place to relax in the presence of wildlife. It’s great for hiking, biking, and exploring, too! Cabins and campsites can be rented depending on your level of outdoorsy-ness. It’s so close, you can even go for a day trip. Spot the alligators, and if you are staying for the night, view the stars with the on-site telescope. Buy your day passes or rentals early, as space at the park fills up. Check it out here. 

Editor’s note: For more fun, socially-distanced ideas, check out the Houston-inspired Huestone exhibit, this listing of new murals around Houston and see our events calendar for more upcoming happenings. 

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