Hemisfair’s Yanaguana Garden Goes Back to the ’80s for 3rd Anniversary

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Thousands of visitors flocked to Yanaguana Garden for the day-long celebration of Texas culture. Photo by Kathryn Boyd-Batstone

Kathryn Boyd-Batstone / Rivard Report

A child is spun at Yanaguana Park at Hemisfair.

Revelers at Yanaguana Garden can bask in the neon glow of the 1980s as Hemisfair celebrates the four-acre downtown garden's third birthday with an '80s-themed bash on Saturday night.

“Dress up in your favorite '80s gear!” assistant director of events Traci Lewand said. “We’ll have plenty of 'glow' everything — beach balls, splash pad, a robot out and all lit up. We’re having art installation, balloon pop-ups, and birthday cake, obviously.”

Party attendees have a slew of brightly lit activities from which to choose. There will be glow yoga, where people are encouraged to decorate themselves with glow-in-the-dark necklaces and bracelets provided by Hemisfair before hitting the yoga mat. A dance floor illuminated with LED lights will provide a colorful place to groove to '80s cover band Sound Stone, which will be playing all the hits of the decade. Even the cotton candy will glow.

“There’s something for everyone,” Lewand said. “It’s all inclusive, multigenerational.”

Lewand urged partygoers to get to Yanaguana Garden early on Saturday and promised light-up sunglasses to the first 100 people who check in at the Hemisfair tent. The party starts at 7 p.m. and runs until 10 p.m. Rain or shine, Hemisfair will be celebrating Yanaguana Garden’s third birthday, Lewand said.

The party was originally planned to end a month-long series of '80s movies screenings, but September’s heavy rain postponed most of those, Lewand said.

Hemisfair will be screening two of the rescheduled movies later in October: Better Off Dead on Oct. 19 and John Hughes’ classic The Breakfast Club on Oct. 27. The park screened Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure last Saturday.

The anniversary weekend is jam-packed with activities at Hemisfair, Lewand said. Like all first Saturdays of the month, Hemisfair will be hosting a “Super Fun Saturday,” from 1 to 3 p.m. October's Super Fun Saturday will be focused on butterflies and pollinators.

“It’s geared toward elementary-aged students,” Lewand said. “However, everyone is welcome. There will be crafts, pollinator plantings with Gardopia Gardens, activity stations with the life cycle of the butterfly, interactive story time – eight different stations and live music.”

Hemisfair will also be screening Marvel superhero movie Black Panther Friday night starting at dusk, around 8:15 p.m. Movie watchers can start gathering in the park for other activities at 6:30 p.m.

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