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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.


Even though the Houston Astros didn't pull off another big win this year, we still love our team! This week’s VIDEO PICK features images of the team when they won last year in a song by Max Flinn, the speaker at this year’s Archway Academy fundraising luncheon (see more about that below.) Watch it and I swear you’ll shed a tear or many. I decided to find a fun way for kiddos to get baseball fever, so one of my KID PICKS this week is tours of the ballpark. Check it out below!

There are three fundraisers coming up the week of October 29 for organizations that I love – you can read about them below in our OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST section. Let’s eat lunch and celebrate all of these groups: Archway Academy, Asia Society Texas Center, Council on Recovery, Houston History Alliance, Pantheon of Women, and SWAMP (Southwest Alternate Media Project). I’ll be at the fundraisers and I hope to see YOU there!


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 October 19-21, 2018
Picks for Adults the Weekend of October 19-21, 2018

Astros Ballpark Tours


It was another exciting year for the Houston Astros and a great way for kids to learn more about them is to take a tour of Minute Maid Park – all the info is here. Tours take place daily, except Sundays, at 10am and noon, and tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for kids. Fun fact: Minute Maid Park was built to reflect Houston's historical relationship with the railroads and features a vintage, full-sized locomotive that runs along 800 feet of track on the left-field wall.

Gallery Construction


This Friday (October 19) and Saturday (October 20) at 7pm and 9pm, Karen Stokes Dance will premiere a hybrid film, dance, and installation performance titled "Gallery Construction." This multi-media performance features seven short films inspired by installations in Houston area galleries from 2011-2017. Galleries include the former Peel Gallery, Art League of Houston, and the former Rice University Art Gallery and artists that inspired the films are Gabriel Dawe, Tanya Aguiniga, Roberta Stokes, Yasuaki Onishi, Soo Sunny Park, Anila Quaayyum Agha, and Thornsten Brinkmann.



Kick off the Halloween season at the Houston Arboretum this Saturday, October 20 from 10am-4pm with their annual ArBOOretum.” Featured will be fun fall activities for all ages including live animals, pumpkin decorating, and Houston’s only “Trick-or-Treat Nature Trail.” It’s a great way to get the kids outside and to kick off the fall. Note: tickets start at $15 for non-members (it’s free for members) and there is no onsite parking. All guest must enter from the 610 entrance.


Mercury Chamber Orchestra’s “Neighborhood Series


Bach’s “Brandenburg 5” is the focus of the Mercury Chamber Orchestra’s Neighborhood Series that will be traveling around this weekend (Saturday and Sunday) and next Thursday (October 25). Period-flute expert David Ross and noted harpsichordist Mario Aschauer join concertmaster Jonathan Godfrey and Mercury Chamber Orchestra for J.S. Bach’s sublime fifth Brandenburg Concerto as well as flute favorites by Telemann and Bach’s son, Carl Philipp Emanuel. Locations include the Dosey Doe, the MATCH, Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church, and The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Energy Day Houston


Last week I had a STEM-related KID PICK – and now here’s another one for you! It’s Energy Day Houston this Saturday, October 20 from 11am-4pm at Sam Houston Park. This event is an annual free family festival showcasing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. There will be almost 70 interactive demonstrations and exhibits that teach students and their families about the various forms of energy, along with efficiency and conservation. Energy Day was founded in Houston in 2011 and is now also in Denver.

Shizen: On the Art of Looking at Nature


Mexico City artist Agustín Estrada is featured in an exhibition titled Shizen: On the Art of Looking at Nature,” which is on view through October 25 at the VADA Main Gallery. The artist drew his inspiration from the Japanese word for “nature” (shizen) and the Japanese art of looking at nature while enjoying the color of the leaves in autumn (“momiji”) and the blooming of cherry blossoms in the spring (“hanami”). The gallery is open weekdays from 10am-5pm and there is no fee. Parking is available in nearby paid lots.


This year’s luncheon fundraisers for Archway Academy and the Council on Recovery are both featuring musicians telling their story of recovery. On Tuesday, October 30, Max Flinn will tell his story of going from a Texas country music-loving middle schooler to a struggling addict who found recovery, quit his job in the oil & gas industry, and became a full-time successful and sober musician. His single “As Big as the Storm” (this week’s VIDEO PICK) was dedicated to the resiliency of Houstonians in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and helped raise money for flood victims. Flinn has said he is greatly influenced by classic country legends such as Merle Haggard, George Jones, Jonny Paycheck, Ernest Tubb, and others. All the details about the luncheon with Max are here.

Rocker Alice Cooper will tell his sobriety story at this year’s fall luncheon fundraiser for The Council on Recovery on Thursday, November 1; all the details about the luncheon with Alice are here. The “Godfather of Shock Rock” is taking a break from the tour for his new album, A Paranormal Evening with Alice Cooper at the Olympia Paris,” because sharing the story of his recovery is that important to him. Cooper is an American singer, songwriter, and actor whose career spans over fifty years – he came to fame in the 1970’s with record-breaking albums such as “Billion Dollar Babies” and “Welcome to My Nightmare” and hit songs such as “School’s Out” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy.” Born as Vincent Damon Furnier, he eventually adopted the stage persona of Alice Cooper as part of his sensational performance style. Cooper is credited with helping to transform the sound and look of heavy metal, and in 2011, the original Alice Cooper band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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.

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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

© 2018 Sarah Gish

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Council on Recovery with Alice Cooper (November 1) Archway Academy with Max Flinn (October 30) Pioneering Women in Media (October 30) Video: Check out Max Flinn’s song As Big as the Storm featuring the Houston Astros Nature Photographs at Rice University Mercury Chamber Orchestra Plays Bach Gallery Construction with Karen Stokes Energy Day Family Festival Houston Astros Ballpark Tours ArBOOretum Celebrates Halloween Max Flinn A Paranormal Evening with Alice Cooper at the Olympia Paris