Deep Ellum’s 150th Anniversary Rolls On with Mural Walking Tour, Arts Fair, Juneteenth Block Party, and More

Known as the “birthplace of the blues in Texas,” the district just east of downtown Dallas regularly buzzes with live music, street art, galleries, restaurants, clubs, and culturally creative retail. But all this year, Deep Ellum is kicking it up a notch. Here's what's in store over the next several weeks.

Deep Ellum, one of Dallas’ most iconic neighborhoods, continues to celebrate its 150th anniversary with a year-long slate of events showcasing the rich cultural heritage that makes it a true gem of Dallas. From art shows and live music performances to food festivals and block parties, Deep Ellum is offering something for everyone.

Known as the “birthplace of the blues in Texas,” the district just east of downtown Dallas regularly buzzes with live music, street art, galleries, restaurants, clubs, and culturally creative retail.

Deep Ellum’s history of helping to shape and influence the Dallas community goes back to 1873. But this year’s birthday celebration is bringing something new to the district, the opening of the Deep Ellum Community Cultural Center.

The year-long celebration, which we previewed last November, continues with a just-announced signature event, a Juneteenth celebration that pays tribute to the African American community’s vital role in shaping the neighborhood and the nation.

Since the beginning of the year, the neighborhood, local organizations, businesses, and residents have joined forces to offer a fun-filled schedule of events and openings. Here’s what’s on tap for April and May—and beyond. 

Art in the City Walking Tour on April 20

Photo: Deep Ellum Foundation

Deep Ellum is celebrating the arts in April for Arts Month by putting artists in the spotlight. Art has a special place in Deep Ellum’s history and culture which will be highlighted through a mural walking tour with the “godfather of Deep Ellum murals,” Frank Campagna.

Deep Ellum is home to more than 150 murals and the walking tour offers an opportunity to showcase local artists’ talent.

The Deep Ellum Foundation and Discover Deep Ellum are preparing for the walking tour of a selection of Deep Ellum’s colorful murals. The tour is scheduled for Thursday, April 20, and will be led by Campagna.

Organizers said the tour celebrates the visual art so distinctive to Deep Ellum. A special partnership event with the Deep Ellum Wine Walk, the murals tour also will feature more than 15 local businesses and offer a signature glass of wine.

Deep Ellum Community Arts Fair May 27-29

Deep Ellum Cool Streets

Art is an important element of Deep Ellum [Photo: Courtesy Deep Ellum Foundation]

On May 27-29, Deep Ellum will wrap up the Memorial Day weekend with the inaugural Deep Ellum Community Arts Fair (DECAF). It’s a community-run three-day event. The fair will offer attendees a chance to explore the vibrant and eclectic culture of Deep Ellum while supporting a variety of local artists, artisans, musicians, performers, and neighborhood businesses.

The event will be on Crowdus Street between two main stages, a venue that will allow attendees to navigate streets filled with art, music, poetry, and more.

Juneteenth Block Party

The Deep Ellum Foundation will host a Juneteenth Block Party from noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 18 (Father’s Day) on Main Street between Good-Latimer and Crowdus.

The lineup for the Juneteenth Block Party is set, and Deep Ellum will bring together local, regional, and national artists to celebrate Juneteenth.

The district said that Jess Garland, Cure for Paranoia, and Dezi 5 will be joined by Jada Arnell, Ei8th Notes Band, and Jayson Lyric, with DJ Lex in the Box providing the sounds.

R&B group Dru Hill, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary, will headline the district’s inaugural Juneteenth concert that will spotlight black music and culture. Sisqo and all six former members of the group will reunite to perform their greatest hits on Main Street.

“Talent in Deep Ellum is even more remarkable than people might realize,” Dezi 5 said.

The free and family-friendly event that will also feature more than 25 black-owned business vendors as well as a special Black History exhibit that will be open to the public.

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R E A D   N E X T

  • From a black-tie kickoff on January 19 to a parade, a music festival, a storytelling summit, and more, the Deep Ellum neighborhood just east of downtown Dallas is gearing up for a 2023 to remember. Known as the "birthplace of the blues in Texas," the district buzzes with live music, street art, galleries, restaurants, clubs, and culturally creative retail. The sesquicentennial will bring something new: the opening of the Deep Ellum Community Cultural Center. It's just one way 2023 will "shape the neighborhood’s future as a continued mecca for creatives, entrepreneurs, and all comers," says a Deep Ellum Foundation leader.

  • You may have seen her mural on the wall of Pecan Lodge in Deep Ellum. But that's just for starters. Marshall has made her mark across Dallas-Fort Worth and beyond as an art curator and consultant for her firm Articulation Art. Tapping the talents of multiple artists, her company has curated art works on exterior and interior walls for the Virgin Hotel, the Design District Playground, the Renaissance Hotel, Cushman & Wakefield, the Case Building, Tom Thumb, 7-11, Deep Ellum Brewing Company, and many more businesses.

  • Like all the others, the Deep Ellum location offers interactive, digital games played by groups in "fun smart rooms." As you can see from the goggle-less players above, it's not about AR or virtual reality. Instead, the "gameboxes" feature a range of tech including projection mapping, touch screens using the company's patented Lidar, 3D motion tracking, and surround sound. 

  • Stelmarksi has been the design director of Perkins&Will's Dallas office since 2011. According to Dallas Morning News architecture critic Mark Lamster, "nobody has done more to shape the city’s built environment this century."

  • Dallas-based global semiconductor company Texas Instruments is expanding its lineup of space-grade analog semiconductor products in plastic packages that can used for a variety of missions—from new space to deep space. TI has more than 60 years in the space market, and it continues to develop radiation-hardened and radiation-tolerant products and packaging that helps engineers meet mission-critical requirements with increased power density, performance capabilities, and reliability. The new products can help lower the cost required to launch an application into orbit, the company said. TI said in a statement that it developed a new device screening specification called space high-grade…