Circle the dates

The second half of Arlington on Tap, the downtown happy-hour-with-a-talk series, returns in January, kicking off a hot-mix of topics for the next five months.

“One month we’ll be talking about chasing tornadoes across the Texas plains just for the thrill of it,” notes Maggie Campbell, president of Downtown Arlington Management, host of Arlington on Tap. “Then we’ll be given a look at the world of booking and hosting musical entertainers. The mayor will be telling Tap attendees about his take on Arlington into the 2020s, we’ll get an insider’s look at what the office of justice of the peace is all about, and we’ll wrap the season with an expert look at the evolving world of Arlington restaurants and dining.”

Arlington on Tap is also sponsored by the Arlington Historical Society and Arlington Today Magazine. Here’s the 2020 schedule:


STORMY WEATHER (Jan 14): Tornado chasers Martin Lisius and Kim George (Arlington-based Tempest Tours) not only chase storms, they bring along weather aficionados for a look-see, in the process creating some of the most fabulous tornado videos and photos ever taken. In fact, Lisius is also a film producer, including the award-winning documentary “The Chasers of Tornado Alley.”

6 p.m., Legal Draft (500 E. Front St.)


“ANYTHING, JUST GET ON STAGE” (Feb. 11): Through season after season at the Levitt Pavilion, Director Patti Diou somehow managed to bring in nationally and regionally famed musical performing acts to the Levitt. Stars-to-be, stars-that-used-to-be. Are some of them eccentric, maybe even weird? “Oh, heck yes,” Diou says.  Do some of them have peculiar requirements? “All the time,” Diou says. And yet the show goes on. For the first time, Diou tells almost all in what promises to be an enlightening talk.

6 p.m., Urban Alchemy, (403. E. Main St.)


ARLINGTON IN THE 2020s (March 2): Mayor Jeff Williams’ appearance will feature a short version of his annual state of the city address, during which he will put a wrap on the past few years and talk about what’s pending (events, economic development, etc.) that could unfold in near future.

6 p.m., J. Gilligan’s Bar and Grill (400 E. Abram St.)


COURT IS IN SESSION (April 14): Because we live in Texas, we’re accustomed to the whole idea of the institution of justice of peace – a stronger tradition in this state than in most others. Arlington Justice of the Peace Mary Tom Curnutt mixes a bit of J.P. history tradition with her own experiences in what has turned out to be the busiest J.P. court in Tarrant County, dealing with everything from small claims suits and highway patrol tickets to school truancy. And more.

6 p.m., Division Brewing (506 E. Main St.)


THE BUDSTER KNOWS (May 12): Star-Telegram Columnist Bud Kennedy may have the most varied newspaper columnist role in the country. He’s the official restaurant dining guru, plus his other column dances with a mix of politics, economics, eccentric people and all-around strange events. And, he’s on the S-T Editorial Board, which means he sits in and chimes in on all those editorials the paper cranks out, making him a key influential media type. In short, he knows things, some of which he’ll share at this season-ending Arlington on Tap.

6 p.m., Maverick’s Bar and Grill (601 E. Main St.)