In Partnership with the Southern Weekend

Things To Do In East Texas This Weekend: July 12 – 15

If you’re looking for fun things to do in East Texas this weekend, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s our rundown of some fun things happening around the area from July 12th – 15th. This Weekend Preview is brought to you by the Texas State Railroad


Pay Your Age Day at Build-A-Bear

For the first time ever, Thursday July 12th you can walk into any Build-A-Bear and pay your age to build a furry friend. That’s right, if you’re 12 years old, you get to build a stuffed animal for just $12 dollars. You do have to be a Bonus Club Member but it’s free to sign up. For more details on the Pay Your Age day, click here.

Chemistry Day

  • When: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Where: Longview World of Wonders, Longview
  • Cost: $8

The Texas A&M University Chemistry Road Show will be performing shows from 10:30am-12:00pm and 3:30pm-5:00pm. The Longview World of Wonders will also have additional stations set up throughout the museum for families to enjoy when the shows are not going on. Children can create color-changing liquids and tasty, frozen treats at the Edible Chemistry Station, learn how to make SLIME at our Hands-On Chemistry Station, and attempt to beat the clock (or a partner!) in an unforgettable Giant Periodic Table Relay Race.

Barbershop Harmony Chorus

Head to Green Acres at 7 tonight to experience the rehearsal of Tyler’s barbershop harmony chorus. They meet in the choir room of Green Acres Baptist Church. Go visit and see what we they’re all about.

Pooches on the Patio

  • When:6 p.m.. – 8 p.m.
  • Where: Cork. Food & Drink, Tyler
  • Cost: Free (must pay for food though)

Head to the patio at Cork for delicious food, drinks and fun. Bring your furry friends and enjoy a great evening. A Portion of the proceeds benefit the SPCA of East TexasThe Northeast Public Health District requires that all attending dogs be current on vaccinations and wear a current rabies tag.  In addition, we ask that all puppies under one year of age in attendance be fully vaccinated.  In order for all pooches to be on their best behavior, please refrain from bringing your unaltered pets to this event.

Big Sam’s Funky Nation

When you think of New Orleans, the city’s foremost flambeaux-lit traditions of Mardi Gras, Bourbon Street, voodoo, Po’ boys, beads, gumbo, and second line undoubtedly come to mind. You can also count Big Sam’s Funky Nation amongst those NOLA treasures. Known for a boisterous blend of funk, jazz, rock, and hip-hop, nothing short of seismic live “experiences,” and a whole lot of Southern charm, Big Sam’s Funky Nation might very well be The Big Easy’s best-kept secret. $15 tickets on sale now! Show starts at 8:30 and Big Sam’s Funky Nation goes on at 10.


Free Climbing Day to Benefit PATH

  • When: 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
  • Where: Tyler Rock Gym, Tyler
  • Cost:  Free

This is your chance to come in for one free hour of climbing. During the free climbing time, they will be taking donations to help support PATH. They are in desperate need of box fan donations. If you would like to donate a fan, please bring one with you. We will also have a donation jar available if you aren’t able to acquire a fan in time. 100% of donations will be going to support PATH. The first free hour is from 10 – 11 a.m., and the second is from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.. Find more information about Path’s Summer Fan Drive here.

Painting Party

  • When:2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Where: Strada Caffe, Tyler
  • Cost: Free

Strada Caffe is hosting a painting party on Friday and it’s completely free. That’s right, there’s no cost for painting or materials. Just show up and have a wonderful time! No reservations are required, and all ages are welcome.

Myrtle Mae’s First Fish Fry 

Myrtle Mae’s is having their first fish fry of the season. Come down FM 315 from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm to get some fresh fried catfish. BYOB.

The Drowning Girls

Based on a true crime event from the early 1900s, THE DROWNING GIRLS tells the story of a man who targets vulnerable women and progressively moves from simply swindling them of their life savings, to drowning them in their bathtubs. The events in this fast-paced, one-hour show are described from the perspective of three dead brides, women who have finally found their voices and freed themselves from the bonds of both their killer and their repressive, patriarchal society. Purchase your tickets here. *There is also a show on Saturday July 14th.

Mineola Fire Department Rodeo

  • When: Friday – Saturday
  • Where: Mineola Fire Department Rodeo Grounds
  • Cost:$10 for adults, $8 for kids

It’s time for the 56th Annual Mineola Fire Department Rodeo. The Rodeo starts at 8 p.m. nightly and Saturday’s performance is by the Keith Mitchell Band And Mineola’s own Todd Brewer.


East Texas Farmers Markets

Books on the Boardwalk

  • When: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Where: Downtown Ben Wheeler
  • Cost:Free

Hundreds of books will be lined along the Ben Wheeler Historic District Boardwalk which stretches from Moore Store to BE’s Records. The books are free to take but they will have donation jars out if you would like to contribute to their Community Library. These contributions will help build programs, building renovations, etc. They have books for all ages and all genres.

Hit The Bricks – 2nd Saturday

  • When:11 a.m. – 11:45 p.m.
  • Where: Downtown Tyler
  •  Cost: Free

Hit The Bricks happens every second Saturday in Downtown Tyler. And this weekend there will be an Auto and Cycle Show, so from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. you can see a wide variety of classic cars, and even vote for your favorite. Outside of the car show there will be vendors, music and other offerings to enjoy on the square.

Great American Arts Fair

The Tyler Parks and Rec Department will host their ninth annual summer event at the Harvey Convention Center. This annual event was formally known as the Christmas in July Art Fair but has been renamed to the Great American Arts Fair to include new activities. Shoppers can purchase handmade items from vendors, including pottery, unique jewelry, body products, wood craft and art, dips, sauces, fine art, photography, mixed media, meet authors of books, glass creations, leather crafts, knives and much more! More than 100 booths to shop in! Special class demonstrations both days. Enjoy live entertainment food court and even an activity area for the kids!

Plastic Bag Sleeping Mat Workshop 

You can help make sleeping mats for the homeless by re-purposing used plastic bags. The workshops are free and you don’t have to be a member to help. These mats help serve as a moisture and temperature from the cold, hard ground. They are portable, durable, easy to clean, and help prevent life-threatening bedsores. There is no shortage of plastic bag need, but a great shortage of helping hands. For more information visit their website here.

Southside Fish Fry

Head to this annual fish fry to fill up on fried fish, hush puppies, fries and slaw. You will also see Air 1 will also be landing their helicopter! All ages welcome and donations will be accepted. There’s going to be raffle, door prizes and a dunking booth (so go dunk a firefighter!)  This is a donation based event so there is no set price on a meal.

Musicals in the Library

Musicals at the Library are the 2nd and 4th Fridays of June and July. Come down to the library to watch the classic musical An American In Paris for the third week!

12×12 SFA FVA Art Party & Fundraiser

Get your wallet ready to support students at Stephen F. Austin.  This major fundraiser for Friends of the Visual Arts benefit’s SFASU Art student scholarships! The event is open to the public and the $100 minimum bids begin at 6 p.m. There is also a raffle to follow.

Card 53 Improv Comedy

  • When: 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Where: Liberty Hall, Tyler
  • Cost:  $15

This Second Saturday, Hit the Bricks with Card 53 Comedy! They bring their unique style of improv “makemups” back to the stage of Liberty Hall and are excited to create for you an experience like no other in Tyler, made up entirely on the spot based off your suggestions. Get tickets here.  Disclaimer: Card 53 strives each show to be what they consider “clean-ish” however due to the unpredictable nature of improv they risk embarrassing their wives, girlfriends, dogs, employers, and total strangers with their unique style of improv makem-ups.

The Palestine Blues Fest 

Doors open @ 7 PM Show @ 8 PM, $20.00 BYOB Setups & Food Available for Purchase. For More Information 469 245 8828.

John York Solo Exhibit Opening Night

Gallery Main Street’s fine art exhibit, “Song of the House Where We Live” solo show by John York. A free opening reception for the public will be held on Saturday, July 14th from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Gallery.  John Randall York was born in Tyler and has lived here most of his life. His grandfather, Henry York, was a photographer in Smith County in the early 1900s, travelling by horse and buggy. York was educated in Tyler public schools, attended TJC and received a BFA from The University of Texas at Tyler.

Ally Venable Band

A powerhouse from the Lone Star State, the Ally Venable Band has ignited excitement on the Modern Blues Scene. Doors open at 8. Jenny Ford will play at 8:30 and the Ally Venable Band will take the stage at 10 p.m. This event is 18+ and up. Get your tickets here.


Beginners Meditation

  • When: 8:55 a.m. – 9:25 a.m.
  • Where: BeFree Yoga, Tyler
  • Cost:  Free

This 20 minute session will give the practitioner a true introduction to meditation – without the scariness sometimes associated with that word. Pleasant, gentle stimuli like incense, music, and pranyama (breath work) will be used to help find and maintain a soft and gentle focus. This session purposefully follows an asana practice, so that you may experience the true purpose of asana – to calm the body and mind in preparation for meditation. However, you are more than welcome to attend this class whether you have ever practiced yoga or not. All are welcome, the meditation classes are always free, and the room will be unheated.

“I’ll Be Gone In The Dark” Book Discussion

  • When: 2 p.m.
  • Where: The Foundry Coffeehouse, Tyler
  • Cost:  Free

Sunday you can talk about I’LL BE GONE IN THE DARK: ONE WOMAN’S OBSESSIVE SEARCH FOR THE GOLDEN STATE KILLER by Michelle McNamara, come join us! It’s the haunting true story of the elusive serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California for over a decade—and of the gifted journalist who died tragically while investigating the case.

Shotgun Rider w/ Bradley Banning

Get tickets here.

Charlotte’s Web 

  • When: 2:30 p.m.
  • Where: Henderson Civic Theatre, Henderson
  • Cost: Reservation for tickets are available ONLY BY CALLING THE BOX OFFICE 903-657-2968

Discover the true meaning of friendship and life’s everyday miracles as Henderson Civic Theatre presents Charlotte’s Web. Get caught in Charlotte’s Web to save Wilbur, the adorable and “radiant” pig. You’ll make friends all over again with Fern and Avery and all the charming barnyard characters that you remember in E.B. White’s beloved tale. This is a must see show for the entire family from the youngest to oldest member.

*All dates and information are subject to change. Contact us if there are changes to the schedule or if we left anything out.

Stay Connected

Stay up to date on all things The East Texas Weekend!

Like us on Facebook | Contact us | Download our App