‘Native Soil’ – Thursday, 6-8pm – An opening reception will be held for Shane Charles Smith’s latest exhibit at The Carrack. Smith is a conceptual artist who utilizes the natural fluid state of combined soft and hard substances like wax, oil and unfired clay along with the solid materials of copper, cement and glass to create works of terrestrial meditations. He builds his paintings with different types of earth from various states across the East Coast, from his current base in Manhattan to his alma mater, UNC. This exhibit, which focuses on his Penobscot heritage, reveals this world as a healing nomadic terrain that humanity ceaselessly encircles. It runs through August 6.
Stories Happen in Forests – Thursday, 6pm – Come out to Motorco Music Hall and join Asheville’s Dogwood Alliance for an evening of storytelling and community-building in the spirit of forest protection and community justice. Our nation’s standing forests are awe-inspiring and critical for our well-being and survival, and they also hold an untold number of tales. Listen to inspiring storytellers including Dr. Thomas Easley, Margaux Escutin, TC Muhammad, Carrboro’s Gary Phillips, Cole Rasenberger and others as they discuss forest protection, community action and human connection to wild places. For all you wanderers of the forests, stargazers, lovers of wild places, forest defenders and folks that speak up for your community, this night is for you.
Big Biscuit Showdown – Thursday, 6-9pm – Join Rise Biscuits & Donuts for their second annual biscuit showdown at The Rickhouse. This unique food competition features 10 teams matching their chefs with local breweries and beverage companies including Bean Traders, Fullsteam Brewery, Carrboro’s Steel String Brewery and Asheville’s Wicked Weed Brewery. Each chef will prepare a special biscuit and doughnut that will be paired with a beverage. You’re invited to taste and judge the best combo. All proceeds from this event will be donated to the Duke Cancer Institute through Give 1 For Dad, a local fundraising campaign whose goal is to launch a clinical trial to test a novel approach in treating advanced prostate cancer patients.
Harvey Dalton Arnold – Thursday, 7-9:30pm – This rock and blues legend, known for his work with the band The Outlaws as well as his collaborations with Robert John “Mutt” Lange and The Rolling Stones, returns to The Bullpen. The Rose Hill native performs a unique left-handed finger-picking style and slide, playing electric and acoustic guitars. Arnold will perform music from his latest release, “Outlaw.” A dollar from every draft pint sold will be donated to the Music Maker Relief Foundation.
Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company – Thursday and Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 7pm – Bill T. Jones and his company, along with associate artistic director, Janet Wong, have created three evening-length works titled “Analogy: A Trilogy,” and they will be performing them as a world premiere for American Dance Festival at DPAC. The complete trilogy brings to light the different types of war we fight and, in particular, the war within ourselves. The works are entitled “Analogy/Dora:Tramontane,” “Analogy/Lance: Pretty aka the Escape Artist” and the ADF-commissioned “Analogy/Ambros:The Emigrant.” Join Jones for a special book club event on Saturday from 1-2:30pm in the South Regional Library meeting room on South Alston Avenue. He will discuss the novel “The Emigrants” by W.G. Sebald, which served as the basis for his work.
Best Exotic Marigold Women’s Cocktail Party – Friday, 5-9pm – Hamilton Hill at Brightleaf Square introduces Sethi Couture, famous for their stacking rings. Designed by sisters Prerna and Pratima Sethi, the collection also includes bracelets, necklaces and earrings, which are great for stacking and layering, too. There will be delicious Indian food and exotic cocktails at this event. Treat yourself to some beautiful jewelry knowing that 10% of the sale will benefit Pennies for Change, which supports domestic violence and sexual assault services.
Jonathan Byrd and the Pickup Cowboy – Friday, 6-8pm – Week six of Durham Central Park‘s new concert series brings this duo to the stage. Chapel Hill’s Byrd is a preacher’s son, a Gulf War veteran and an award-winning songwriter, known for literary, outsider songs that have become campfire favorites. Multi-instrumentalist Johnny Waken cut his teeth on electric guitar in Pittsburgh, opening for The Blues Brothers Band on their Red, Hot & Blue tour in 1992. On stage and after hours, he jammed with members of Bon Jovi and the legendary Steve Cropper. Between heartbreaking ballads and gusty sing-a-longs, these cowboys entertain, and audiences can’t help but get involved in the show. Baguettaboutit, BullCity Burger & Brewery, Bull Durham Beer Co., Raleigh’s Jay’s Italian Ice and MacUrRoni will be on hand selling food and drinks during the show.
Buff Dillard – Friday, 7pm and 9pm – This Charlotte-based smooth jazz recording artist performs two shows, including music from his latest release, “Feel My Passion,” at Beyú Caffé. He is an entertainer who excites his audiences with his charming personality and the melodic melody of his trombone, and he has spent years developing his signature sound, “Bonejazz,” which patterns the human voice. His single, “Queen City Vibe,” hit No. 27 on the Indie Smooth Jazz charts, and he has shared the stage with Walter Beasley, Boney James, Pieces of A Dream and many other artists. His goal is to spread peace, love and therapeutic melodies throughout the world.
‘Honour’ – Friday, 7:30pm; Saturday, 2pm and 7:30pm; Sunday, 2pm – The Ward Theatre Company’s summer production continues this weekend and will run through August 12. For this production, the Company has added Saturday matinees to its customary Friday-Sunday performance run at its theater space in the Five Oaks neighborhood of Durham. This is the story of a woman named Honor who has navigated the ups and downs of marriage with her husband Gus for 32 years. Despite a promising career as a poet, she set aside her ambitions to support Gus and their daughter, Sophie. When Gus betrays her and moves in with a woman half his age, Honor is left to reinvent herself. Raleigh’s Katie Sheffield and Cary’s Alexandra Petkus star in this drama, and there will be a Q&A with the cast following Sunday’s matinee.
Patty Griffin and Lee Ann Womack – Friday, 8pm – Two incredible American singer-songwriters have banded together for an acoustic tour, performing at The Carolina Theatre. Folk sensation Patty Griffin and country queen Lee Ann Womack collaborate, converse and share songs from their incredible catalogs, side by side. Griffin is a Grammy Award-winning artist who has achieved great acclaim for her songwriting as well as for her powerful voice. Her first two albums, “Living With Ghosts” and “Flaming Red,” are considered seminal albums in the singer-songwriter genre. Womack’s first album in seven years, “The Way I’m Livin,” won the 2015 Country Album of the Year as well as 2016’s Best Solo Country Vocal Performance and Country Song for “Chances Are.” She has built a career seeking songs that slice life wide open to let the pain, the emptiness, the rage and the desire pour out.
‘Deception’ – Friday, 8-10pm – The Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University hosts a brand new production of Audio Under the Stars. Join them for an evening of stories about things that aren’t quite what they seem. From little white lies to scandals and skullduggery, they will explore all manner of deception and deceit. Make sure to bring a blanket, a picnic and a friend to this outdoor event.
Che Apalache – Friday, 8:30-11pm – Che Apalache, which means “my Appalachian homeboy,” is a four-man string band based in Buenos Aires with members from Argentina, Mexico and the U.S. The group is led by North Carolina native Joe Troop, who immigrated to Argentina in 2010. While making a name for himself in the local music scene, Joe made a living teaching bluegrass and, over a period of time, he and his students became picking buddies. As a band, they have concocted a unique blend of Latin American and Appalachian music. Their debut album, “Latingrass,” is a testament to how cultural exchange can yield authentic fusion. As always, $1 from every draft pint sold goes to Music Maker Relief Foundation.
Katie Basden – Friday, 9:30-midnight – Venture out to Aloft Durham Downtown to see this Durham native perform tunes from her latest CD, “Release the Sound.” Her music is a melting pot of different genres, combining country, soul, rock and blues into an enticing blend of Southern American music. She grew up in a home full of musical influences and started her solo career at the tender age of 15, moving to Nashville to write songs and perform. Katie most recently placed as a finalist on Blake Shelton’s team on NBC’s “The Voice,” and her single, “Gypsy Prophet,” was chosen “Best Country Video Performance” by singer-songwriters Chris Stapleton and Charlie Worsham.
National Cheesecake Day Celebration – Saturday, 11am-5pm; Sunday, 2-5pm – It’s National Cheesecake Day and Royal Cheesecake & Varieties is celebrating all weekend. Come out and have a slice of their delicious cheesecakes. They have several varieties including blueberry, dark chocolate drizzle, mocha coffee chocolate and white chocolate raspberry. Chef Ken will be introducing a new flavor, and you can also buy a raffle ticket to qualify for some great prizes.
Student U’s 10-Year Celebration and Block Party – Saturday, 11am-1pm – Join Student U in celebrating their decade of success at the Hayti Heritage Center. They will be showcasing student work, recognizing partners from their first decade and creating the vision for their future at the new W.G. Pearson Center. The fun continues at Pelican’s SnoBalls, where Student U hosts a community block party with snow cones, food trucks and yard games. Grab some lunch from Chirba Chirba Dumpling, Chapel Hill’s El Molcajete and Will & Pops.
Oysterfest – Saturday, 6pm – Paul Greenberg, author of “American Catch and Four Fish,” stops by The Durham to throw an oyster bash at the restaurant with Travis Croxton and his team from Rappahannock Oyster Company. Early Saturday morning, Travis will pull bushels of oysters from the water and drive them straight to the restaurant. Over cocktails on the patio, his team of shuckers will share their secrets before a three-course feast of raw, roasted, stewed and fried oysters. Gin spritzes, sparkling wine and pitchers of beer will be available, and Paul and Travis will lead a blind taste challenge and freewheeling discussion of oysters and the state of American seafood. Paul’s book will be available for purchase courtesy of The Regulator Bookshop.
Future Prospect – Saturday, 7 and 9pm – Come out to Beyú Caffé and enjoy this septet, the newest addition to the Richmond music scene. Their music, rooted in the jazz tradition, is fused and intertwined with funk, R&B, gospel and also integrates hip-hop, with a balanced blend of flavor, high energy and soulfulness that all complement each individual musician.
Bull Moon Ride and Run – Saturday, 7:30pm – This one-of-a-kind, after-dark athletic event is dedicated to supporting the mission of Habitat for Humanity of Durham. Participants can choose either a 12-mile bike ride or a 5K run, and both events will begin and end at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Help build a safe community for families in need of affordable housing, wear your best costume and join in a super block-party smash afterwards. Local vendors will provide a great potluck with delicious food and refreshing beer, and you can dance the night away with music by DJ Highrise. Make sure to also head over to The Bullpen and see Zoocrü perform. Advanced check-in for the race will be held on Friday from 4-7pm at Omega Sports in New Hope Commons.
Eric Roberson – Saturday, 8pm – Erro, as he is affectionately known by fans and friends alike, performs music from his latest release, a socially conscious compilation called “Earth: The Push,” at Motorco Music Hall. This Grammy Award nominee continues to break boundaries as an independent artist in an industry dominated by major labels, manufactured sounds and mainstream radio. He has written songs and produced music for artists such as Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild and Dwele, and he has released nine albums under his own label. Durham’s own Zoocrü opens the show.
‘What’s So Funny? Peace, Love and Understanding?’ – Saturday, 9-11pm – Durham Cinematheque is proud to present this film, part of its Movies in the Park 2017 series, at Durham Central Park. In this unique movie, social consciousness is paired with laughs. Comic interludes spice up a serious program, which includes “The Language of Faces,” a 1961 documentary about peacefully demonstrating against war. Also featured is “An Interview with Bruce Gordon,” an extraordinary portrait of this Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee field secretary speaking his mind about racism that was recorded in 1963 in Selma, Alabama. Come early, bring a picnic and a chair or blanket, and enjoy the twilight. Admission is free but donations are appreciated. The event is sponsored by Vaguely Reminiscent.
‘Where’s Waldo?’ Prize Party – Sunday, 3pm – Sustain-A-Bull and The Regulator Bookshop partnered for the annual “Where’s Waldo?” scavenger hunt. The famous children’s book character in the striped shirt and black-rimmed specs has visited different local business in the Durham community this July, and those who spotted him can win prizes, including buttons, book coupons, gift certificates and more. There will be snacks, prizes, family-friendly activities and more at this party. Come in costume and join the fun!
Paint Your Pet – Sunday, 7:30-9:30pm – By popular demand, Wine and Design brings this popular event downtown to Ponysaurus Brewing Company. Paint your own pet portrait at your favorite brewery at sunset. Beloved fur babies plus awesome local beer equals some serious fun!
Gangstagrass – Sunday, 8pm – Blending bluegrass and hip-hop may seem like an unlikely recipe for success, but don’t tell that to Rench, the mastermind behind this Emmy-nominated bluegrass/hip-hop group. Come out to Motorco Music Hall and hear what this genre-busting band sounds like. Back when he was still in grade school, recess was a time for breakdancing on cardboard to RUN-DMC. But at home, his parents were playing Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash records on the stereo. That musical mash up made a lasting impression on Rench, which he finally put to good use on the band’s single “Long Hard Times to Come.” This song was featured during the opening credits of the hit TV show “Justified.” They will be playing tunes from their latest release, “American Music.” Durham’s Kamara Thomas opens the show.