HOUSTON (AP) — Summer is nearly year-round in Southeast Texas so it should be no surprise that the free stuff to see and do in the sprawling metropolitan area of the nation's fourth-biggest city focuses on the outdoors.
But that doesn't mean you have to surrender to the area's infamous heat and humidity, particularly brutal in August, to enjoy attractions that will only cost the time and gasoline to get there.
THE MENIL COLLECTION: Banker John de Menil and his wife Dominique, heiress to the Schlumberger oilfield company fortune, over decades amassed a collection of nearly 16,000 art objects that since 1987 have been on display at the Houston museum that bears their name. The collection features pieces by European and American masters plus ancient and modern works from around the world. The museum's companion Rothko Chapel provides visitors with a tranquil meditative environment that welcomes 60,000 visitors a year.
MILLER THEATRE: The Houston Symphony, Houston Grand Opera and Houston Ballet headline an extensive performing arts lineup that's been using the Miller Theatre stage since the 1920s and now draws nearly a half-million spectators annually to the 7.5-acre site in Hermann Park, just east of the world famous Texas Medical Center. Tickets for the recently-renovated covered seating area are available early in the day for that evening's performance and concert-goers also can bring a blanket and sit on the grass hill immediately behind the seats.
THE WATER WALL: A couple blocks south of the Galleria, Houston's largest shopping experience, and in the shadow of the 902-foot Williams Tower, the city's most visible skyscraper outside downtown, this 64-foot-high semi-circular fountain arguably is Houston most photographed site. Visitors can stand inside the wall that re-circulates 11,000 gallons of water each minute. Besides providing cooling mist, the visual effect is surreal. A night visit inside the lit fountain gives it an entirely different look and experience.
PORT OF HOUSTON BOAT TOUR: Since 1958, the 95-foot-long Motor Vessel Sam Houston has been taking visitors on a 90-minute cruise of the Houston Ship Channel, home to one of the world's busiest ports and among the world's largest petrochemical complexes. The boat holds up to 100 people who can sit in its air-conditioned seating area or stand on the deck to take full advantage of the port's sounds and smells. There's no charge but reservations are required.
GALVESTON: Houston's getaway to the Gulf of Mexico. OK, it's not the glistening white Gulf beaches of the Florida Panhandle but it's only an hour's drive south on Interstate 45. Park on the Galveston Seawall and you're there. And as a bonus, one of the best free trips in all of Texas is just off the east end of the seawall, where the Bolivar Ferry 24 hours a day carries vehicles and passengers the couple of miles back and forth across Galveston Bay. Watch for dolphins and feed the sea gulls.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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