Mother Nature can be unpredictable in the Great Northeast. And sometimes, there are weekends like this one -- where a shower or thunderstorm could show up at your barbecue, do its thing, and go away.
With that in mind, we've put together a list of stuff to do -- both indoors and outdoors. Just bring your umbrella along and you'll be fine.
Got something else planned? Share with the crowd. Stay dry and have a great weekend.
Troy Night Out
It's the last Friday in July, so it's Troy Night Out. Collar Works Gallery's Percolate! exhibit showcases the work of six UAlbany MFA candidates and "provides a moment's glimpse of the diffusive nature of evolving ideas and the metamorphoses they fuel." Niki Haynes' "Playland" exhibit opens tonight at The Arts Center of the Capital Region. This year's Fence Select show is also opening there, as is "Guess Who's coming to Dinner" opens tonight (a ceramics exhibit in dining room settings), and Ira Marcks will be performing "Tales From St. Forget," a multimedia storytelling event based on his graphic novel Witch Knots (6 pm and 7 pm). Here's the full Troy Night Out Schedule. The TNO after party gets underway at Daisy Baker's at 9 pm.
We're into week number two of the season at the Saratoga Race Course. Here are a few tips on how to get the most out of your day at the track. Stuff to keep in mind this weekend:
+ Today is Family Fun Day in the backyard with a bounce inflatable plus arts and crafts and other activities for kids. It's also College Day -- college students get free grandstand admission (usually $3) with a valid college ID. There will also be college-related prizes and giveaways. Racing starts late on Friday -- gates open at noon, first race at 2:30 pm.
+ The first gate giveaway of the season is Sunday -- a Saratoga Race Course baseball cap. As with all the gate giveaways, they're free with paid admission while supplies last. (Yep, some people will pay to enter multiple times in order to get multiple giveaways. It's called "spinning." To each their own.)
Pick a patio in Saratoga and watch the world go by. Or have a cocktail at The Adelph and slip into a world gone by.
Capital Region Craft Brewers Festival
More than 25 brewers from the Northeast to Michigan will be offering samples of their beers at Joe Bruno Stadium on Saturday at the 3rd Annual Capital Region Craft Brewers Festival. 2:30-6:30. $25-$47.
Blues, Brews, and BBQ
Friday night the National Museum of Dance in Saratoga hosts a Blues, Brews and BBQ festival. Food from PJ's Bar-B-QSA, blues music, and craft beer tastings from Saratoga Brewery. $55 advance, $65 at the door.
The packed summer theater festival season continues. A few highlights for this week:
+ The Berkshire Theater Festival is doing A Chorus Line, which you've heard of. They're also doing a small musical you may not have heard of -- A Class Act. The show is made up of wonderful songs written by A Chorus Line lyricist Edward Kleban. The piece was pulled together by a gropu of Kleban's friends. The show was nominated for five Tony Awards in 2001 and is rarely performed. This production at the Unicorn Theater in Stockbridge is very well done. Friday at 8 pm, Saturday at 2 pm and 8 pm - $45
+ Bare: A Pop Opera -- This musical about a group of high school seniors at a Catholic boarding school facing issues of sexuality and personal identity is headed Off-Broadway in the fall. This weekend you can see the final production before the Off-Broadway run at Steamer 10, as part of its Eclectic Performance Series. Heads-up: mature language and themes, so you may want to leave the kids home. $20
+ The Williamstown Theatre Festival's production of The Elephant Man -- starring Patricia Clarkson, Bradley Cooper and a few other actors you might recognize continues this weekend (be sure to check about tickets -- it looks like it's down to a lottery situation for available spots). The adaptation of Far From Heaven closes Sunday.
+ The Park Playhouse's great production of Cabaret at Albany's Washington Park Lakehouse closes Sunday. Friday through Sunday 8 pm - free
+ The Classic Theater Guild opens its production of The Durang Hour,an evening of one act comedies by Christopher Durang at Indian Ladder Farms,
Helderberg Theater Festival. Durang's plays have pretty mature themes, so you probably don't want to bring kids to this one. Tonight at 8PM and Sunday at 6PM. Free.
+ The Heldeberg Theater Festival is also doing The Merry Wives of Windsor on Saturday night at 8 pm at Indian Ladder and Cinderella on Sunday afternoon at 2 pm. Free.
+ Shakespeare's Twelfth Night continues in Saratoga's Congress Park. Tonight and Saturday, 6 pm - free
Comedy... with music
Something different after Troy Night Out this Friday: The J/K Follies --"an evening of comedy and music with Kevin Marshall and Jed Davis" -- at the Daily Grind in Troy. Says Kevin: "The idea is to provide an all-around entertaining evening of crisp, quick entertainment that keeps the audience engaged, amused, and enthralled. What I envision is essentially a live, 21st Century version of the Merv Griffin Show." 8:30 pm - $5 suggested donation
Mop and Bucket Company is back underground at Proctors on Friday night. A new show every week based on audience suggestions. Friday 8PM. $14, $6 students and seniors.
Bang on a Can Marathon
Saturday at MASS MoCA: the Bang on a Can festival concludes with a six hour concert -- featuring more than 50 musicians -- from composer Steve Reich (you're can come and go as you please during the concert). The museum's galleries will be open until 8 pm that day, too. 4 pm - $24 / $35 day pass (includes gallery admission) / $15 students
Schoharie County Sunshine Fair
The Schoharie County Sunshine Fair gets underway today and runs through August 4th, with a midway, circus, rides, shows, music, fair food and more. Tickets start at around $8. Gates open 9AM to 10PM.
Writers in Saratoga
The NYS Writers Institute summer series of public readings wraps up tonight with a panel discussion -- "Writers on the Presidential Election" -- featuring Katha Pollit, James Miller, and Robert Boyers. 8 pm in Skidmore's Palamountain Hall - free
Maple Ski Ridge is holding a 5K mud run to support the Albany Vet Center on Saturday. The course is designed by local military mud runners, so be ready to get dirty. There's also a 2K family mud run. You can run, walk, or just watch. Registration starts at 9:30 am, race starts at 11 am ($45 entry fee). Family run starts at noon ($20 entry fee). Bring a towel and an extra set of clothes for the post party.
A summer skateboard jam at Saratoga's East Side Recreation Field on Lake Avenue with music, skateboarding and contests. Saturday from 4 pm-7 pm
Troy Flea, a new TightKnit Saturday market that includes "handmade, vintage and antique art and goods," is open for the season. It's on the block of River Street in Troy south of the farmers' market. Saturday 9 am-2 pm.
MASS MoCA's annual Bang on a Can festival continues with the six-hour performance Saturday night (mentioned above). And Oh, Canada, a show that highlights art from our neighbors to the north, opened recently. Museum admission $15, $10 for students, $5 for children.
2012 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region
Sixty-five works of art by 30 artists from the Hudson Mohawk Region are part of an exhibit at the University at Albany Art Museum. Saturday 11 am-4 pm - free
A exhibit of work from Adirondack photographer Seneca Ray Stoddard continues at the State Museum. free
The new Sculpture in the Streets exhibit is made up of giant wooden shoes. Take a walk around downtown Albany and check them out.
A lot of people have extra days off this weekend, which is always a good excuse for a little road trip. A ride out to Columbia County to check out the field sculptures at Art Omi or a shopping trip to Northampton could be fun. Or maybe a visit to a brewery or cheese farm.
Take a trip out to Western Mass and stop in at the Berkshire Botanical Garden.
Sunday looks like the best day for swimming. Pick a pool or a beach, grab a towel and a good book, and you're good to go.
Celebrate them at the Austerlitz Historical Society Blueberry Festival. Blueberry pancake breakfast, lots of blueberry treats, vendors, music, antiques and crafts. Sunday 9AM - 4PM. Adults $6, kids under 12 Free.
SPAC advertises on AOA.
MopCo is also an AOA advertiser
Capital Rep has advertised on AOA in the past
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