Labor-free ways to spend your Labor Day weekend

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    With Labor Day weekend nearly here, many students already have their plans set in place. However, those who don’t can still find fun on short notice. By splitting a tank of gas and bunking up, there are plenty of destinations within range for a quick trip:

    Luckenbach

    If you like country music and have yet to make the pilgrimage to this central Texas mecca then you’re missing out.

    Luckenbach has hosted Willie and Waylon and is a good place to hear aspiring country stars. Luckenbach has great country charm and is surrounded by beautiful hill country scenery. If you don’t mind adding a bit more to a four and a half hour drive, taking the back roads and rural highways will give you an amazing view of Texas on your way down.

    If you decide against the beaten path you’ll also get a chance to stop through Glen Rose, a town known for its stellar barbecue and Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. The wildlife center offers a variety of tours that let you see deer, rhinos, giraffes and other wildlife in a natural element. You can even buy a bag of feed to get the giraffes right up to your windows. Admissions start at $22.95 according to fossilrim.org.

    Luckenbach’s free Labor Day celebration includes “picker circles” and live entertainment Saturday through Monday in the evening and afternoon, according to luckenbacktexas.com.

    Austin

    Sixth Street isn’t a hard sell for college kids. It is as advertised – live music, stiff drinks and a wild atmosphere – and the holiday weekend isn’t about to kill the buzz. The only drawback to spending your weekend in Austin is you’ll want a day off after a couple nights of going big.

    Nearby Krause Springs is a wonderful place to recover from debauchery of all kinds. The springs are about 30 miles outside of Austin so driving is a breeze. Admission to the campground, which is home to 32 freshwater springs, is only $5 for visitors. If you’d like a night away from bright lights, overnight camping is only $10 for adults according to krausesprings.net.

    More information on Sixth Street can be found online at 6street.com.

    Lake Texoma

    There are plenty of lakes around Fort Worth, but here’s one a little farther off the beaten path. It’s just over 100 miles to Lake Texoma, but for fishing to camping Texoma is the most complete lake in the area.

    The crowds on local lakes over holiday weekends are prohibitive enough keep most away, but the Red River staple is big enough to find an isolated spot if you want to be left alone.

    Texoma is legendary for its striper fishing and guides generally work through the holiday weekend. If you don’t want to pay for a guide, picking up a rod and reel and casting off is a great way to kill a lazy afternoon.

    Accommodations range from tents to resorts and everything in between. The only limits are what you want to spend and the experience you’re after. Many resorts also rent out pontoon boats or jet skis if you want to get out on the water.

    More information can be found at laketexomaonline.com.

    Staying Local

    If a road trip is out of the question there is still plenty to do around Fort Worth.

    While the Texas Rangers and Dallas Cowboys will be away from home this weekend, Arlington will be hosting the first football game that counts in Cowboys Stadium. Conference rival BYU will open their season against Oklahoma in one of the top matchups in college football Saturday.

    While the game has been declared a sellout, Jerry Jones is more than happy to help you spend. If you’d just like to go check out the new stadium, Spirit Passes are being sold for the game online. The $25 passes allow full access to the party platforms in the end zones as well as public concourses, concession areas, and seven acres of outdoor plaza space.

    Kickoff is at 6 p.m. and passes are available through ticketmaster.com.

    If football isn’t for you or you’re looking to kill time before the game, Six Flags Over Texas will host Labor Day picnics Saturday through Monday from 12-3 p.m. The cost to get in will be $14.99 in addition to regular admission.

    Even closer to campus, Billy Bob’s Texas will host the fourth annual Cross Canadian Ragweed Red Dirt Roundup on Sunday. The concert will begin at noon with The Bart Crow Band and continue all day with acts like Charlie Robison, The Gourds, the Randy Rogers Band and the Wallflowers, according to ccrreddirtroundup.com. To cap off the evening, Robert Earl Keen will take the north stage at 9p.m., followed by Cross Canadian Ragweed at 10 p.m. on the south stage.

    Tickets are $30 in advance and can be found on ticketmaster.com.

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