Stuff to do this weekend

Gruffalo Still BSFF.jpg

The Gruffalo, one of 40 short films from around the world screening at the Ballston Spa Film Festival

Things could get a little bit soggy this weekend with some passing summer thunderstorms, but don't make that an excuse to stay in.

There's lots of stuff going on indoors -- and out -- this weekend. After the jump, you'll find some stuff we thought looked fun. Got other plans? Let us know about them.

And whatever you're up to, have a fantastic weekend.

1st Friday
Albany's weekend kicks off with the 1st Friday celebration tonight. A few highlights:
+ The Forgive Us Our Trespasses urban exploration photography show at the Albany Barn project's Stage One gallery on North Swan.
+ The "Then and Now" show at Albany Center Gallery features work by photographer and accomplished printmaker Thom O'Connor.
+ Jordan Betten's Color Outside the Lines show is at Marketplace Gallery.

After 1st Friday:
+ Iron Gate Cafe has its annual lobster bake
+ Reggie's Red Hot Feet Warmers headline the Capital Swing Dance at 25 South Allen
+ NYC jazz musician Gaetano Vaccaro is at the Grand Street Arts Center.

Here's the full schedule of 1st Friday activities.

Ballston Spa Film Festival
The annual Ballston Spa Film Festival is already underway. Between tonight and Saturday night it will be screening 40 short films from 6 countries -- and a few from right here in the Capital Region. There are screenings tonight and Saturday night at 9 in Wiswall Park in Ballston Spa and tomorrow afternoon at 1 pm in the Ballston Spa High School auditorium. If it rains, the evening screenings will also move to Ballston Spa High School. We went last year and really enjoyed it. The films were terrific, the atmosphere was fun -- and it's free!

Animation Festival
Proctors' animation festival starts today, with three films including an evening screening of the the Japanese film Parika (reportedly an inspiration for Inception). The 9-day event includes screenings of 20 animated films that range from kids stuff to adult fare. Tickets are $3 per screening, or you can buy a $15 pass that gets you into 10 screenings.

Saturday at MASS MoCA: a screening of the restored full length Metropolis with the score played live by Alloy Orchestra, which specializes in playing with silent films. 8:30 pm - $15 ahead / $19 day of. Go early and check out the galleries and grab a quick bite in the museum cafe -- surprisingly good food for a museum cafe.

Roller Derby
The Hellions of Troy are back in action this weekend against the Brick City Bruisers. The bout takes place at Rollarama in Schenectady. Doors open at 6, whistle at 7. $10 in advance, $12 at the door, $3 for kids under 12.

Galloping Grapes
Spend a day at the Saratoga Racecourse on Sunday and check out the Galloping Grapes New York Wine Event. You can sip and sample wines from around the state all afternoon on Sunday. $20 in advance, $25 at the door.


+ Steve Earle, Felice Brothers at Brewery Ommegang. It's a festival with a handful of other acts, too. $40

+ Lia Ices at Helsinki Hudson. Both the Fork and Brian Williams like the ethereal singer, so... that's something. 9 pm - $10

+ Three Day Threshold and Eastbound Jesus at Red Square. A night of "good country gone terribly terribly wrong." 8 pm - $7

+ Erin Harkes Band at Jillian's.

+ Aztec Two-Step holds its 40th anniversary Concert tonight at Caffe Lena. 6:30 pm - $30 advance / $32 door

+The Nancy Walker Trio perform tonight's UpBeat on the Roof concert on the roof of Skidmore's Tang Museum. 7 pm - free

+ Hudson River Coffee House hosts a whole night of indie folk for free tonight. Carl Daniels, Maksimilian, Fine Folk, Party Boat, Steve Layman and Saint Joseph. 8 pm - midnight

+ Railbird, Sgt Dunbar, Matthew Carefully at Putnam Den. 9 pm - $3

+ Olivia Quillio, Bryan Thomas, Tara Emelye, The Midnight Society at SwordPaw HQ. 9 7 pm - $5

+ Bon Iver at Mountain Park in Holyoke, Massachusetts. A bit of a drive. But: it's Bon Iver. His latest album is at the top of many year-so-far lists. 7 pm - $25 and $35

+ Fishtank Ensemble at Caffe Lena. "High-energy, cross-pollinated gypsy music" from California. 7 pm - $16 ahead / $18 at door

+ O.A.R. is at SPAC. 6 pm - $22-$36

Many of One Festival
Skeletons in the Piano, Eastbound Jesus, Cosmonauts and High Peaks Band are a few of the groups plaing the first Many of One Festival this weekend at Lee's Park on Saratoga Lake. Day passes start at $30 and weekend passes with camping are available.

The Philadelphia Orchestra continues its run at SPAC. Tonight and Saturday it's "Cirque de la Symphonie".

We're in the thick of summer theater festival season. Here's a quick guide to what's going on at local festivals this season.

A few highlights for this weekend:
+ The Producers continues this weekend at Park Playhouse. Curtain is at 8 pm. Tickets are free, but reserve ahead tickets are available for purchase.

+ She Stoops to Conquer,, a "raucous 18th- century comedy of big costumes, big sets, big hair, and even bigger laughs" continues at WTF in Williamstown. Also at WTF, Touch(ed), a "tender comedy [that] explores the scope, limits, and sometimes dangerous side effects of familial love."

+ The comedy In the Mood premieres Saturday at Berkshire Theater Festival.

+ Classic Theater Guild presents Shakespeare's The Tempest, The Actor's Nightmare, Desire, Desire, Desire, Antigone Rising, and Alice in Wonderland this weekend at The Helderberg Theater Festival. Bring a chair.

There should be some good pool time between the rainstorms. Here's the list of all the pools, beaches and sprinklers in the region.

Wait out the thunderstorms in a museum. Here's some of what you can see this weekend:

+ Union College has a new exhibit of pulp fiction paintings at the Mandeville Gallery in the Nott Memorial.

+ The Albany Institute of History and Art has started up its free Fridays and half-price Saturday admissions for the summer. You could chill with the mummies or check out new work by artists of the Hudson-Mohawk region.

+ Pissarro's People, portraits by impressionist Camille Pissarro, is the big exhibit this summer at The Clark, but while you're there, be sure and check out Spaces: Photographs by Candida Hofer and Thomas Struth. The large scale photographs kind of bent our minds recently. The photos examine how people interact with spaces, history and the passage of time.

+ The Hyde Collection's big summer exhibit, New York New York: The 20th Century, includes over 60 works of art that depict New York City and human interaction with it.

Exotic cars
Saturday at the Saratoga Auto Museum the folks at Hemmings present their Sports & Exotic Car Show. 10-3. Free.

The Tri City Valley Cats are at home tonight and Saturday night at 7. Tickets range from $5-$11.

The Whitney Cup Polo Exhibition is this weekend at Saratoga Polo Association. There are matches tonight and Sunday at 5:30 Clubhouse $25.00 per person, General Admission $25.00 per car load. Reserved seats are $40.00 per person

Learn to be a beekeeper
The folks at Betterbee in Greenwich are hosting their 10th annual Beekeeping Field Day on Saturday from 9-4. They'll hold lectures in the morning and beekeeping workshops in their apiaries in the afternoon. Free.

Crafts on the Farm
Lakeside Farm, home of your moment of autumn zen, is hosting an Art and Craft Show on the farm on Saturday and Sunday

German Biergarten
Tonight the German-American Club of Albany's Schuetzenpark Biergarten -- the "last original biergarten in the Capital District" -- is open to the public starting at 5 pm. German music, food and, of course, bier.

Ice cream
We hate to be the ones to break it to you, but there's less than a month until those seasonal ice cream stands start to close up for the year. You don't want to have any regrets in September. Before you go, you may want to check out Daniel's Tour de Soft Serve or the AOA ice cream tour.

Spend a lazy morning/afternoon lingering over brunch and a Bloody Mary or enjoy a great diner breakfast.

SPAC advertises on AOA. And AOA is a media sponsor of the Ballston Spa Film Festival.


The Swordpaw show on Saturday nite starts at 7pm., not 9pm. You'll miss half the fun if you arrive at 9!

1st Friday Gallery Bicycle Ride. Meet at the Soldiers and Sailors monument in Washinton Park. We leave around 6pm, ride to various galleries. VERY casual. (I'm hoping to get to Stage 1.)

Wow, I read this post over 3 times, thinking that you couldn't possibly have omitted African American Family Day, but you did. It's one of the most popular events of the summer in Albany, and a big showcase of local music and young performers. But polo? Guess we know what your target audience is.

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