Free Activities in Dallas, TX
Fire Station No. 1 in Fort Worth was in continuous use as a fire station for more than a century. It’s now the site of one of the most historical museums of Fort Worth. Now home to the “150 Years of Fort Worth” display, the station is a popular free tourist attraction for history buffs. The museum is home to an interactive bunkhouse model, which features a video about well-known Texas cowboy Charlie Bell, a scale model of the original city of Fort Worth (as established in 1849), the uniform and writing desk of Major General William Jenkins Worth, and more. Come alone or bring the kids from 9 am to 8 pm daily.
The Bureau of Engraving & Printing gives free 45-minute guided tours on weekdays (it’s one of only two in the U.S. that offer them). During your tour, you’ll be guided down an elevated walkway, where you can see money being printed below. There are also other displays, demo exhibits and historic artifacts, like a turn-of-the-century spider press and engraver’s bench. It’s important to remember that the bureau is a secure government facility, so all guests (including children) will be screened before entering. But for a slight inconvenience when you enter, you’ll get to see one of the most important processes in the U.S.
The Dallas Symphony Orchestra hosts a series of free outdoor performances at Dallas-area parks and other venues throughout the spring and summer. The series, which attracts up to 30,000 DFW-ites yearly, includes two annual events that have become Dallas traditions: the Easter Concert at Lee Park and the Memorial Day Concert at Flagpole Hill. These concerts are made possible by generous donations from individuals, foundations and corporations in the Dallas area.
This year’s concerts, all of which last about an hour, include African-American and Latino concerts and concerts featuring pieces and medleys with a patriotic theme.
The Goss-Michael Foundation, located in Dallas, Texas, provides a place for British Contemporary artists to show exhibitions and provides resources to educate youth and adults. Founded by recording artist George Michael and his partner Kenny Goss in 2007, the Goss-Michael collection is comprised of approximately 500 works by British artists, each hand-picked by Goss and Michael. It's a combination of often provocative themes like sexuality, personal identity, beauty, death and societal and political issues. Students are welcome by appointment to access the establishment’s archive, intended to provide a resource for those studying contemporary art. Teacher previews are also available to give educators the chance to discover the educational opportunities available there.
The assassination of President John F. Kennedy changed our nation forever. Visit the Kennedy Memorial in downtown Dallas for a glimpse into one of the most important tragedies in the city’s history. The memorial, designed by famed American architect Philip Johnson to mimic an open tomb, symbolizes Kennedy’s freedom of spirit. Visitors walk up a slight concrete incline into the 50-foot square room to view the only writing on the memorial carved in stunning gold to reflect the light: “John Fitzgerald Kennedy.” This aesthetically simple monument is a “thoughtful piece of art intended for reflection and remembrance.” (Photo courtesy of The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza)