THE TO-DOUX LIST is lifestyle editor Abby Ledoux’s weekly roundup of pop-ups, markets, and whatever else she feels like doing around Houston each Friday–Sunday (generally). To submit an event for consideration, email details to email@example.com.
Welcome to a special (extended!) holiday-themed edition of the To-Doux List. Let the merriment commence!
Turkey Burn Rev Ride
When: Thursday, Nov. 28; 8:30–9:30 a.m. (Memorial Green), 9–10 a.m. (Heights), and 9:45–10:45 a.m. (River Oaks)
Where: Define Memorial Green, Heights, and River Oaks
What: We will say this one time and one time only: There is no room for guilt on Thanksgiving. Are you going to consume at least double your recommended daily caloric intake? Likely. Are you going to enjoy every single second of it, even when you're bloated and swaying in and out of consciousness during the football game? You bet. If you're the type of person who needs to preemptively do something to counter the excess, Define has you covered—start the day with an hour-long spin class (thighs before pies, baby) at all Houston-area locations to boost energy and kickstart metabolism. Trust us, you're going to need it later. Book your spot at your preferred studio online.
32nd Annual Uptown Holiday Lighting
When: Thursday, Nov. 28; 4–7 p.m.
Where: Post Oak Blvd.
What: Bring the whole family along to this holiday extravaganza while the turkey digests, beginning with holiday music and concessions at 4, live entertainment at 5, and an all-new light show featuring 300 20-foot-tall, obelisk-shaped holiday trees made with cutting-edge technology, each containing 249 individually controllable LED light units. The new show requires coordination of nearly a million LEDs up to 40 times per second. The result? Nearly 17 million color possibilities across 1.7 miles of Post Oak Blvd. There's free public parking throughout the more pedestrian-friendly Uptown area, and the (also free) event will culminate in a dazzling fireworks display that's sure to jolt you out of your tryptophan-induced haze.
Black Friday Holiday Flea
When: Friday, Nov. 28—Sun., Dec. 1; 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Where: Silver Street Studios, 2000 Edwards St.
What: If you're angling for door-busters on big-ticket items at the box stores this Black Friday, godspeed. If you're looking to escape the commercial madness and want to support local makers, artists, and small businesses from Houston and beyond, this weekend-long holiday edition of the curated Flea at Silver Street might be more your speed. Peruse perfectly giftable artisan goods, handmade jewelry, home decor, original art, and more from more than 100 Texas-based vendors in the 20,000-square-foot venue, which will also include food trucks and a full bar. Plus, you can meet adoptable animals on-site from partnering org Jamie's Animal Rescue. General admission is $5 (kids 12 and under free); tickets can be purchased at the door with cash or credit.
Merry Mansions Gingerbread Display
When: Friday, Nov. 29; 11 a.m.–1 p.m.
Where: The Houstonian Hotel lobby
What: This cherished Houstonian tradition brings history to life, albeit in edible form. Pastry "elves" work tirelessly to meld hundreds of pounds of gingerbread, gumdrops, and candies into a massive holiday display that celebrates the Bayou Bend Collection and estates found along North Post Oak Lane, their halls fully decked. The intricately decorated masterpieces are on regal display in the Great Room Lobby (for free, plus complimentary valet), and guests can take in the sights while sampling the Merry Mansions holiday cocktail menu, roasted chestnut truffles, and First Lady Barbara Bush's cookies and milk.
When: Friday, Nov. 29; 7 p.m.–midnight
Where: Downtown Houston Historic District, Main St. (between Commerce and Rusk)
What: We're fully on-board with the Downtown District's efforts to make this a new holiday tradition: The city is shutting down Main Street to vehicular traffic for this 21+ block party filled with all things jolly—that includes a Black Friday Gift Market, Christmas Carol-oke, an appearance by Hipster Santa (obviously he'll take selfies with you), a pop-up holiday photo booth #forthegram, and free cotton candy from Lush Puff. Local bars and restaurants in the area will join in the fun with food and drink specials and live music, too.
When: Saturday, Nov. 30; 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Where: Quattro at the Four Seasons
What: Children can decorate their own gingerbread houses in the cozy, festive warmth of "Houston's living room" at the Four Seasons—which means you don't have to clean up the mess. A special holiday tea service will follow with a selection of teas, treas, and prosecco for the grown-ups. There are two seatings, and more Gingerbread Teas will take place on December 7, 14, and 21. Tickets are $75/adults, $50/children; limit one gingerbread house per child, and adults can purchase an extra house to decorate for $25. Call 713-650-1300.
Julep Holiday Decorating Party
When: Sunday, Dec. 1; 4 p.m.
Where: Julep, 1919 Washington Ave.
What: The beloved local bar is getting ready for the holidays, and they need some elves. Alba Huerta and the Julep team are enlisting Houstonians to help deck the halls at this decorating party that doubles as a charitable benefit—a portion of proceeds from the entire event will go to No Kid Hungry. Besides getting in the holiday spirit, guests who lend a hand will also be the first to try Julep's new Christmas menu—and have Happy Hour all. Day. Long. Cheers!