Weekend Best Bets: Taste, Tour, Tails and Tiaras

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A headliner for the Art of Cool Festival, Anthony Hamilton performs at 8pm Saturday at the Durham Athletic Park.
A headliner for the Art of Cool Festival, Anthony Hamilton performs at 8pm Saturday at the Durham Athletic Park.

The Dawn of Peace: Surrender at Bennett Place, 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War – Through Sunday, 10am – Commemoration of one of the final major events of the American Civil War on the actual site of the Bennett Farm, where Major General William T. Sherman and General Joseph E. Johnston met on April 17, 18 and 26, 1865, to reach a peace agreement to end the war. Activities include: negotiation reenactment; military encampments and drill demonstrations; sutlers and artisans; musical entertainment; unity monument ceremony; noteworthy speakers, historians and authors; and more. Bennett Place State Historic Site, 4409 Bennett Memorial Rd.; 919-383-4345

VIP Reception Hosted by Andrea Reusing – Thursday, 5pm – Prior to the Grand Taste Experience, James Beard winner Andrea Reusing of Lantern offers a sneak peek of her new menu at The Durham Hotel, where she is opening a restaurant/rooftop bar this year. Andrea will sign copies of her cookbook, available for purchase at this event. Bar Lusconi, 117 E. Main St.; $50; 919-933-1551

Frequency Series Fundraiser – Thursday, 6-9:30pm – A screening of three seasons of the popular lesbian sci-fi original series Frequency, produced by KV Works, which features cast, crew and settings from the Triangle area. Fans will be treated to scenes and storylines from the first three seasons, including unreleased episodes from the current season (three) and exclusive content from the upcoming fourth season. The event will be emceed by Tracey and Matthew Coppedge of The Lowdown Show. The screening begins at 6:42; doors open at 6. There will be a Q-and-A, series trivia and merchandise will be available. Motorco, 723 Rigsbee Ave.; $5 suggested donation

Grand Taste Experience – Thursday, 6:30pm – Spend the evening savoring dishes created by more than 20 of the best chefs in the region. Meet local beverage makers producing your favorite beer, soda, coffee and spirits. The chefs’ favorite distributors will bring you wine from around the world. Oh, and there’ll be music by Mint Julep Jazz Band! (Purchase
 VIP tickets to get access to a reception hosted by Durham’s newest chef, Andrea Reusing, beforehand!) The Armory, 220 Foster St.; $95; 919-933-1551

Success Suits Her – Thursday, 7-10pm – An inaugural fundraiser to benefit Dress for Success Triangle, which lifts women out of poverty one job at a time. Live music, great food, and silent and live auctions! Enter a raffle to win a trip to Napa Valley, Wrigley Field or the Nashville Country Music Awards. Quintiles, 4820 Emperor Blvd.; $125; 919-286-2128

The Art of Cool Festival – Friday–Sunday, times vary – Nonprofit The Art of Cool Project, which showcases award-winning, world-class jazz/ roots musicians, hosts this event of jazz-filled musical entertainment. It features two outdoor stages, five indoor venues and more than 30 performances. Various outdoor and indoor music venues in downtown; $30+; 919-864-8161

Kind of Blue Art of Cool Welcome Reception – Friday, 4-6pm – Inspired by the milestone contemporary jazz album Kind of Blue by Miles Davis, this exhibit is a celebration of the ties between visual arts and jazz, and is in association with the Art of Cool Jazz Festival (April 24-26). In addition to works by eight Pleiades member artists, Kind of Blue also features work by Raleigh artist Eric McRay and Brooklyn-based artist Rachel Abrams (Soundpapered). The exhibit runs through May 9. Tonight’s event features live music by Kate McGarry and Keith Ganz. Pleiades Gallery, 109 E. Chapel Hill St.; Free admission; 919-797-2706

Friends of the Durham Library Spring Book Sale – Friday, 4-7pm, Saturday, 10am-4pm, and Sunday, 2-5pm – Features an evening preview sale for Friends members only. Thousands of fiction and nonfiction books are categorized for easy shopping. Prices start at 50 cents for paperbacks and $1 for hard covers. Everyone is encouraged to join the Friends – annual memberships may be purchased at the door. All are welcome Saturday and Sunday, which features a $7 bag sale. (Paper grocery bags will be supplied by the Friends.) Durham County Library, 300 N. Roxboro St.; 919-560-0190

Foggy Ridge Cider Dinner – Friday, 6:30pm – Chef Ricky Moore of Saltbox Seafood Joint and Chef John Eisensmith of Six Plates Wine Bar team up to present a four-course, seasonal dinner paired with The New York Times’ “America’s Favorite Cider Award Winner,” Foggy Ridge Cider from Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Diane Flynt of Foggy Ridge is also a 2015 James Beard semi-finalist for Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Professional! Cider maker Chuck Flynt personally pairs each course with one of his delectable ciders and educates diners along the way, taking them on a journey that started in 1997 when he and his wife, Diane, planted their orchard, proudly continuing an American tradition that began in 1623. Over 30 American, English and French apple varieties – hard to grow but full of the tannin, acid and aroma needed for fine cider – are blended to create traditional hard ciders crafted with modern techniques. Sarah P. Duke Gardens, 420 Anderson St.; $110; 919-933-1551

Chris Tucker – Friday, 8pm – International award-winning actor and comedian kicks off his 2015 U.S. comedy tour. DPAC, 123 Vivian St.; $35+; 919-680-2787

19th Annual Old Durham Home Tour – Saturday and Sunday, noon-4pm – This year’s tour focuses on the architecture of prolific, local, early 20th century architect George Watts Carr, who was the principal architect for both Forest Hills and Hope Valley. The self-directed tour features seven homes designed by Carr in these neighborhoods. Carr is best known in residential architecture for his Colonial Revival homes, but the tour also showcases his range of design in other popular early 20th century architectural styles, including Spanish Eclectic and Tudor Revival. On the tour are the William Muirhead House, William Branson House, George Watts Carr, Sr. House, D. T. Smith House, Gordon K. Ogburn House, Hubert O. Teer House and Allan. H. Gilbert House. All proceeds support Preservation Durham’s programs. Durham Alumnae Delta House, 1000 E. Forest Hills Blvd.; $20 in advance, $25 day of dour; 919-682-3036

Burger Smashdown
 – Saturday, 12:30pm – Join burger chefs from Mattie B’s Public House, Tyler’s Taproom, Al’s Burger Shack, Buns and Only Burger as they create one of their favorite burger and side duos for you to eat and vote on. Sean Lilly Wilson of Fullsteam personally pairs his flavorful beers with each burger/ side combo. Enjoy Rise Donuts for dessert, plus live music by Tea Cup Gin and darts, ping pong and games that you always love at Fullsteam. Fullsteam, 726 Rigsbee Ave.; $50 for adults, $15 for children younger than 12; 919-933-1551

Pie Social – Saturday, 1-5pm – Activities including multiple Pie Walks, face painting and other games to play while you are in between pie slices. This annual event offers the opportunity to try different locally concocted pies, get to know SEEDS, meet the DIG Youth Crew and hang out in the garden. The Pie Social was started by the DIG Youth Crew to help raise funds for summer salaries. SEEDS, 706 Gilbert St.; Suggested Donation: $10 for four tickets. One ticket is needed for a pie slice, and can also be used to participate in activities at the event; 919-683-1197

Piedmont Farm Tour – Saturday and Sunday, 2pm-6pm – The Piedmont Farm Tour offers the opportunity for locals to meet with area farmers and explore various farms. The self-guided tour is made up of over 40 farms across the Triangle, and allows for guest to choose which farms to visit and the order. Each farm will provide activities such as wagon tours, how-to planting advice and opportunities to purchase products. Follow the Google Interactive Map to plan your trip. The cost to visit all farms on both days is $30 per car in advance and $35 on the day of, with registration available online.

Meet the Author: Scott Ellsworth – Saturday, 3-4:30pm – The author reads from his book, The Secret Game: a Basketball Story in Black and White, the story of the 1944 game between Coach John McLendon’s Eagles from North Carolina College for Negroes and Duke University’s best basketball team at the time, a military team from the medical school. A book signing will follow the reading. Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Old Fayetteville St.; Free; 919-560-0100

Wine and Design of Durham Grand Opening – Saturday, 4-9:30pm – From 4-6pm, enjoy appetizers, door prizes, tours and a collaborative mural of the Durham skyline, painted by Wine and Design instructors. A Durham skyline painting class will follow the celebration from 6:30-9:30pm. The Durham location offers 1,847 square feet of studio space and a special events room. Wine and Design of Durham, 4810 Hope Valley Road; Grand opening is free, class is $35; 919-391-8359

“Tails and Tiaras” Beaver Queen Pageant Kick-off Party – Saturday, 6-8pm – Meet this year’s contestants and judges, and come shake your tails with the Bulltown Strutters! The event will be emceed by Ellen Ciompi and 50% of all food and drink sales and 20% of all other store sales at Parker & Otis will go to the Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association during the event hours. Parker & Otis, 112 S. Duke St.; Free admission; 919-698-9729

Artisan Cocktail Dinner
 – Saturday, 7pm – Five of Durham’s best craft cocktail makers bring you original curated drinks paired with delicious bites from the kitchens of Revolution and Piedmont! Tim Neill of Bar Lusconi and Peccadillo, Olivia Gray of West End Wine Bar & Billiards, Crawford Leavoy of Piedmont, Brad Weddington of NanaSteak and Shannon Healy of Alley Twenty Six serve up their most interesting cocktails. Plus, talented local DJ Dae Emerson! The Cookery, 101 W. Chapel Hill St.; $110; 919-933-1551

“Insightful Sound” – Saturday, 7:30pm and Sunday, 3:30pm – The North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble hosts an end-of-season performance with non-stop percussive dance, featuring cutting-edge contemporary choreography along with traditional rhythm tap. The music ranges from classical to hip-hop to jazz, featuring a live jazz trio and special guests Danny Nielsen and Nico Rubio. The Carolina Theatre, 309 W. Morgan St.; $10-$15

Bob Dylan – Saturday, 8pm – The singer-songwriter and one of the best- selling artists of all time performs live in concert with his band. DPAC, 123 Vivian St.; $62.50+; 919-680-2787

Roots of North Carolina Dinner
 – Sunday, 6pm – Chef Amy Tornquist hosts an intimate dinner at her restaurant Watts Grocery, well known for its focus on local agriculture and Southern flavors. Amy’s menu is based upon dishes that have been created, cultivated and perfected in our state over the past two centuries. Marcie Cohen Ferris – the author of The Edible South: The Power of Food and the Making of an American Region, published by UNC Press in September – will give a narrative of the history of North Carolina cuisine at this three-course meal with wine pairings by Piedmont Wine Imports and live music by the Haw River Hocketts. Watts Grocery, 1116 Broad St.; $85; 919-933-1551

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Amanda MacLaren

Amanda MacLaren is the executive editor of Durham Magazine. Born in Mesa, Arizona, she grew up in Charlotte and attended UNC-Chapel Hill, majoring in journalism. She’s lived in Durham for eight years. When she’s not at work, you can usually find her with a beer in hand at Fullsteam, Dain’s Place or Bull City Burger or getting takeout from Guasaca.
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