We get it: Dads are hard to buy for. Even harder? Fathers-in-law, if you happen to be your household's designated gift-planner. Just a reminder, Father's Day is June 19, and it's sneaking up on us like your old man trying to catch you flipping through his mint-condition record collection.
Maybe it's time to ditch the material items and go for a good time together. Here are some of our favorite places and upcoming events that make it easy to celebrate dad in D-FW.
Take him to a classic car show
If pops is into chrome, custom paint jobs and rock-and-roll, introduce him to the Morning Maniacs, a local group of classic car enthusiasts, at their Father's Day Weekend car show on Saturday, June 18, at the Shops at Park Lane. The event is free and open to the public and features live music from The Rumble Kings, who play old-school hits made famous by Elvis, Johnny Cash, Stevie Ray Vaughan and the like. Spend the afternoon together, maybe ask about his first ride. Watch his wistful expression as he stoically runs a hand down the polished fin of a Bel Air.
Hear Texas music legends play with their sons
Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock have been playing together off-and-on for nearly 45 years. (They founded The Flatlanders with fellow West Texan Joe Ely in '72.) They'll return with their sons Rory Hancock and Colin Gilmore - rising stars in their own rights - for a Father's Day session at the Kessler on June 19. If dear old dad likes original songwriting with flavors of Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan, he'll appreciate this talented quartet. Tickets start at $20, and the show begins at 8 p.m.
Maybe he's more of a rocker? Here are other great gigs you could consider on or around Father's Day weekend.
Sit a spell, have a cold beer
Remember the first moment you realized your dad was a real person and not just some capital F father? Maybe you were 10 or 12 or so. Or, maybe you're still waiting for the chance to get to know the man behind the likely-shared last name. If you're reading this, chances are you're old enough to both purchase beer and think of him as a friend.
Beer editor Tiney Ricciardi suggests grabbing a growler from Nobel Rey Brewing Company in the Design District or The Collective Brewing Project in Fort Worth. If you're seeking a spot to spend a few hours, here are 10 beer bars in the Dallas-Fort Worth 'burbs and 5 local beer gardens recently named among the best in America.
Feel like making a day of it? Old Town Lewisville's Best Little Brewfest in Texas returns with samples from more than 90 craft breweries and 300-plus handcrafted beers on Saturday, June 18. Tickets start at $35, and it begins at 3 p.m. (21-up only). Further west in Keller, Shannon Brewing Co.'s Father's Day Celebration offers limited releases, live music and tacos and sliders from Rollin Stone Food Truck. There's also an Ugly Tie Contest to put those past presents to good use and vendors like Mystery Fishing Crate, North Texas Cigar Society and Golf Galaxy on site.
Geek out together
Once upon a time, dad's were known for liking things like smokeless tobacco and John Wayne movies -- that's certainly still true for some -- but, younger dudes reaching peak dad-dom often relate more to vintage arcade cabinets and pin-ball machines. Running June 18-19 at Plano Centre, the Let's Play Gaming Expo features 85-plus vendors, 90-plus arcade cabinets and retro gaming tournaments with games like Smash Bros and Tetris. One-day admission is $15 in advance or $20 at the door and children 12 and under are free with an adult ticket.
On a tight budget? Richardson's Free Play Arcade offers a wide variety of classic titles like Donkey Kong, Burger Time, Pac-Man and Joust for quarter-free play. Ten bucks at the door gets you all the games you want and adults can stay late for beer and bar food. Here are other places to play arcade games in D-FW.
See if he's still got it
The precise moment when offspring surpass their parents at physical challenges or certain sports can be both a cherished rite of passage and sort of traumatic for all involved. Once, he let you win. Now, we're gazing into the depths of an existential crisis...
But, maybe you've got one of those incredible dads who keeps fit. If he's hardcore about it, challenge him to the Spartan Race, an obstacle course sprint race at AT&T Stadium on June 18. "Runners will sprint across the field, through the stands and into otherwise restricted areas in this iconic stadium," organizers say. Coolest effect? Seeing yourselves broadcast live on the Jerry World big screen. Tickets are $139, and there are different start times throughout the day.
OK, that's pretty intense. If you're looking for something a little more low-key, consider the Must-Dash (yup, that's a mustache pun) 5K at Galatyn Park in Richardson. Runners get a sweet t-shirt, stick-on mustaches and finisher medals, and there's food at beer at the finish line. Registration is $39 for adults through June 13 or $44 June 14-race day. The 5K begins at 7:45 a.m. on Saturday, June 18.
Want other ideas? Consider TopGolf, boozy bowling and other bars with games for grown-ups in D-FW.
Freebies for fathers
Money doesn't grow on trees, and Dad might have taught you the value of a hard earned dollar. If he's frugal, he'll appreciate the Father's Day Taquiza at Traders Village on Sunday, June 19. They're giving away free Miller Lite samples and tacos for all "dads and company" 21-years-old and up. The event is from noon until 3 p.m. (or until samples run out) at 2602 Mayfield Road in Grand Prairie.
Send him something nice
Unfortunately, not everyone lives close enough to for a hometown hang-out with their dad. Here are a few mail-order options he might love.
The Bacon Bouquet: Chef's Cut Real Jerky will send him a selection of chef created, prime cuts of meat in a cool arrangement. The collection includes 6 bags of Applewood, Maple and Sriracha varieties for $49.95, with free shipping. Be sure to place your order before June 9 for a June 19 arrival.
Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit: If he likes tinkering around with spices, he can experiment by mixing cayenne, ancho, curry and chili with included peppers, vinegar and brown sugar in this kit from Uncommon Goods. It comes with six bottles and customizable labels for $34.95. That doesn't include shipping, but their are rush options for last-minute orders.
Cassette to MP3 Converter: Vinyl may rule forever, but many old-school music lovers have held on to that dusty, musty cassette collection, and the frugal gentleman knows there's no reason to purchase iTunes when you've got a perfectly good copy of Born in the U.S.A. in the basement. The Arrela USB Portable Cassette to MP3 Converter makes for a good middle ground. It's an Amazon best-seller, available for $22.99 and that sweet, sweet super-fast Amazon Prime shipping.