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Welcome to GISH PICKS: CURATED CULTURE FOR KIDS AND ADULTS! I’m Sarah Gish, an info-preneur and culture sleuth who finds the unusual and cool in Houston each and every week. Join me as I shine a light on special gems and unique Houston fun. I love this city and want to show you the people and the places and the events that make it great (see more about my wishes for that here). And I want to make it easy so I sort through the cornucopia of events offered each weekend and PICK only three for FAMILIES and three for ADULTS to recommend to you. That way you’ll be all set when Friday hits! If you’re new here, please read below for more about this blog and then check out my PICKS for this weekend, further below.

Have a great weekend and please love one another, please share this, and please – go IGNITE YOUR LIFE!


My heart goes out to ALL victims of gun violence – there were 2 more incidents this weekend, in El Paso and Dayton, and these were the 250th and 251st mass shootings this year in America (click here to see a full list in 2019). In comparison, there's been one mass shooting this year in Canada and three in Mexico. It’s terrifying and we all need to be very, very concerned…and my response will be to TAKE ACTION. I don’t believe the solution is to take everyone’s guns away, but in my opinion: assault rifles need to be used only by the military, we need stronger gun legislation, and the NRA's influence on gun control legislation needs to be addressed . If you are concerned about gun control legislation, please call your representatives in Congress on a daily basis (click here for a full list of who represents you). And get involved with or make donations to any of these groups advocating sensible gun control: Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun ViolenceEvery Town for Gun SafetyGiffords Courage to Fight Gun ActionMoms Demand ActionSandy Hook Promise, and Stop Handgun Violence. What’s going on in Houston regarding this issue? Mayor Sylvester Turner held a vigil last Sunday for the shootings, and he also has an active task force, the Mayor’s Commission Against Gun Violence. And over at Christ Church Cathedral, I hope you can join me at the final screening of their “Summer Documentary Film Series.” They are screening the very timely film “Newtown” on Wednesday, August 21, 6-8pm. The event features a delicious free dinner (donations encouraged!) and a discussion following the screening. All the details are below.

This week’s VIDEO PICK is a short film about the history of the beautiful Julia Ideson Library – named after Houston’s first librarian! I hope you’ll visit it sometime soon, we are so lucky that it’s so well-preserved. Here’s a great opportunity to see it next week: on Wednesday, August 14 Pop Shop America is hosting a DIY Origami 21+ event from 6:30-8:30pm. For $36, you can listen to music, enjoy complimentary beer and wine along with savory treats, and enjoy cool crafting.

Summer is winding down…but August is still on the calendar, my friends! If you’re looking for summer day camps for these last days before school starts – doncha worry! You can search my HUGE database of over 200 camps at and special this week, you can peruse my groovy list of August camps, below. I worked hard to round them up – please check them out and support those orgs that keep going all the way through the end of summer. God bless ‘em!


We are the most diverse city in the country, not only because of the over 150 languages spoken here every day, but also because of the diversity of events offered and places to hang our (cowboy) hats. Because of that, I decided back in 2004 to start sharing my adventures in Houston and my knowledge of it with others via GISH PICKS. And, since 2016, I have been bringing it to life with my PICKS-ON-WHEELS Facebook Live segments in which I travel around our city in my Phoenix Rising Art Car. Stay tuned here for more details! My adventures will sometimes be posted as my weekly VIDEO PICK in this blog.

A note about the social media for GISH PICKS: please LIKE our Facebook page for FAMILY PICKS and our Facebook page for ADULT PICKS. Click “See first” in the dropdown menu on the LIKE button so you won’t miss a post! And please follow me on Instagram and Twitter. You’ll get all my CULTURE PICKS and more that way. And there’s one last way to stay in touch with me: I organize many events, such as labyrinth walks and workshops, so if you’d like to be informed of those before everyone else, please subscribe to my Gish Creative list here.


Please be sure to tell your friends about GISH PICKS – the more people who know about these unique cultural events, the more unique cultural events the organizations will offer us. Please also tell the orgs that I sent you. My business grows by word of mouth so I thank you for your continued support.

And, last but not least: this blog is free to you, my dear reader, but it’s not free for me to produce. I pay my designer and I spend many hours researching, compiling, and writing GISH PICKS each week. If you have an event you’d like me to PICK, please email me and let’s see how I can help. With me on your team, you’ll reach thousands of Houstonians in a quick-and-easy way!

Have a great weekend and please love one another, please share this, and please – go IGNITE YOUR LIFE!

Picks for Kids the Weekend of August 9-11, 2019
Picks for Adults the Weekend of August 9-11, 2019

Aurora Picture Show


It’s time for the annual “World Premiere” presentation of films made in the Aurora Picture Show’s summer camps 2019, taking place this Saturday, August 10 at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston from 10:30am until noon. For more than a decade, Aurora Picture Show's popular one-week filmmaking camps have provided kids ages 7-15 years old with opportunities for hands-on, creative collaborations with professionals. Admission is free (as is the Museum admission) and no tickets are needed.

Alley Theatre


The Alley Theatre is getting mysterious with their annual ExxonMobil Summer Chills series – this year’s production is Agatha Christie’s “Murder on the Orient Express,” onstage through August 25. The show is a plot-twist masterpiece that has thrilled mystery lovers from television, radio, and film (and who doesn’t love Agatha?!). Playwright Ken Ludwig (who recently adapted “The Three Musketeers” for the Alley) adapts this classic thriller that features renowned detective Hercule Poirot and a cast of clever characters. Tickets start at $31.

A.D. Players


The A.D. Players Academy Productions is a program in which students learn all aspects of a professional production; this year’s presentation by the group is “Stuart Little: The Musical.” The show will only be onstage this weekend (August 9-11) so catch it while you can. The cast explored a story they know well: the mouse who is part of an ordinary New York Family. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased here. (by the way, if you haven’t been to their new theatre, it’s GORGEOUS!)

Houston Playback Theatre


Spend an evening with Houston Playback Theatre in a unique show at the Jung Center this Friday, August 9 from 7-9pm. They’ll bring the lives of audience members to life through interactive theatre by drawing out stories, thoughts, or even just a feeling from the volunteers. In touching, outrageous, and funny ways, HPT performances make audience members aware of the many connections we share but often forget. All tickets are $10.

Children's Museum of Houston


The Children’s Museum has a satellite spot in Fort Bend: their Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center, and through September 14, they are celebrating nearby neighborhoods. Each week, their “Fort Bend Neighborhood Days” will feature a different neighborhood by offering $2 off admission to encourage neighbors to meet each other and to celebrate their community. This week, through August 10, they are celebrating Firethorne, New Territory, Old Orchard, Orchard Lakes Estates, Pecan Grove, and Waterside Estates.

Texas Folklife


Accordion Kings & Queens” is a Texas Folklife visual showcase of their annual concert at Miller Outdoor Theatre that celebrates the amazing musical diversity of Texas accordion styles of "the national instrument of Texas," including conjunto, polka, country western, zydeco, Cajun and more. The show is up through this Friday, August 9 at HCC Central Campus.

August Day Camps


Hey parents – summer ain’t over so if you’re fretting over August plans for your children, worry no more. I rounded up a list of my favorite camps, below, that are still welcoming kiddos this month. Check ‘em out and sign ‘em up (click on the highlighted organization to head straight to their camp info)! Be sure to tell them I sent you – thanks!

J&P Summer Documentary Nights


Christ Church Cathedral hosts an interesting and thought-provoking program each summer -- "J&P Summer Documentary Nights" -- which is a curated film series by the church’s Justice and Peace Council on select Wednesday nights each summer month. This month, on Wednesday, August 21, the doc will be “Newtown,” the story of the horrific mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut that changed history and revolutionized discussions on gun control. The screening is especially timely given the two gun sprees this past weekend. It’s an extremely sad and difficult issue, and this film attempts to bring it closer to home so that we can begin to understand what is really happening and discuss solutions to this ongoing crisis.

The screenings are free and a delicious dinner is provided; there will be a short discussion afterwards. They take place from 6-8pm in the Cathedral's Reynolds Hall. Park across the street at 511 San Jacinto in the garage and bring in your ticket to get it validated for free parking.

GISH PICKS: CURATED CULTURE FOR KIDS AND ADULTS is a free weekly email in which I cull through the HUNDREDS of events offered in our city each week and PICK just three for adults and three for kids to recommend. It’s #GishPicks #CuratedCulture to help you plan your weekend! I know many of you go to events based on GISH PICKS recommendations; PLEASE remember to tell the organization that you are there because of us. Word-of-mouth like yours helps our business to grow. In the same spirit, please also feel free to share GISH PICKS with friends and families.

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The purpose of GISH PICKS is to help Houstonians become aware of all the interesting and unique things they can do in Houston and the surrounding area. Exploring your city is a great way to #IgniteYourOwnLife and we are so happy to help you do that. Please do give me feedback and ideas, as you are out there in the trenches also looking for interesting things and I want to hear what you find.

If you are having trouble getting to a website listed here, try hitting the "Ctrl" button and left-clicking on the web address, which should make it "live".

For more about my personal, family, and business enrichment company, Gish Creative, and the services we offer, please click here. You are on this list because I thought this e-newsletter would be helpful to you or because you signed up for it. Please feel free to tell your friends to subscribe by clicking here. My goal is to serve as an information resource for Houston kids and adults through my various endeavors, including:

  • GISH PICKS: CURATED CULTURE FOR KIDS AND ADULTS, which is online and emailed out to thousands of Houstonians who love to explore our city;

  • THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE, a searchable database of over 200 Houston day camps and classes for kids and teens;

  • IGNITE YOUR LIFE!, my art project and community campaign whose goal is to inspire people around the world to light a fire to their own passions and to create connections among people;

  • INTUITIVE GUIDANCE SESSIONS, which are one-on-one consultations with me at Body Mind & Soul on Mondays. Sessions are one hour or thirty minutes and I can help you with personal and/or work questions;

  • Quarterly “WHAT’S YOUR PURPOSE?” workshops at Body Mind & Soul, check the store’s online calendar for dates and more information; and

  • OTHER SERVICES including SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS, INTERACTIVE WORKSHOPS, MARKETING, PRIVATE CONSULTATIONS, GUIDANCE SESSIONS FOR FINDING YOUR PURPOSE, and ART PROGRAMS. Talks and workshops cover topics such as summertime fun, passion-finding (for adults, children and families), marketing, historic preservation, art classes, activism, and more. All of these services can be tailored for any audience and budget.

Sarah Gish
Sarah Gish
(Photo: Two Birds Photography)

Sarah Gish
1940-A Fountainview, PMB 116
Houston, Texas 77057
phone: 713.492.1173

© 2019 Sarah Gish

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"Newtown" Movie on Gun Violence in Schools (August 21)August Summer Day Camps for Children (through the end of August)Video: Learn about the history of the Julia Ideson Library (plus DIY America August 14)Texas Folklife's "Accordion Kings & Queens" ExhibitHouston Playback Theatre at the Jung Center "Murder on the Orient Express" at Alley Theatre Fort Bend Neighborhood Days at Discovery Center "Stuart Little: The Musical" at A.D. Players Aurora Picture Show's Summer Camp Films