What is there to do in Charlotte this weekend? Here’s our experts’ picks on everything from entertainment – movies to music to theater – to food and wine, beer and restaurants. And shopping, of course...
▪ Original UB40 members vocalist/guitarist Ali Campbell, multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Astro, and keyboardist Mickey Virtue, who had all left the band by 2013, have regrouped as a trio called UB40 Legends Ali, Astro and Mickey. The trio brings the string of reggae, lover’s rock, and hit classic pop covers that it helped make famous to Knight Theater. $25-$50. www.blumethalarts.org
▪ The National Hot Rod Association takes over Z-Max Dragway this weekend with the first of six races in NHRA’s Countdown to the Championship featuring the top 10 drivers in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock and Pro-Motorcycle Stock. While the main event is Sunday, there will be qualifying races, a parade to honor first responders, jet fuel cars, vintage military vehicles, vendors, and food Friday-Sunday. Single day pass $27-$54, three-day $99. All tickets includes pit pass. Children 13 and under free. www.ticketmaster.com
▪ Christopher Clamp opens his first solo exhibition since 2013 at Jerald Melberg Gallery, 6-8 p.m. Clamp paints portraits of objects with personal and universal nostalgia from his 1980s Southern childhood (think LEGOs, X-ray glasses, and brightly hued medicine bottles).
▪ Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famers Professor Griff and Terminator X of legendary rap group Public Enemy take fans to school with a musical lecture, slide presentation, and DJ set on the History of Hip-Hop at Petra’s in Plaza-Midwood. It’s a chance to see the music veterans in an intimate setting, share in Griff’s intellectual take on the genre and its cultural ramifications, and enjoy Terminator X’s nostalgic set afterward. $20-$25. 7 p.m. www.petraspianobar.com
▪ The world’s largest cornhole tournament, Pitchin’ for Wishes, celebrates its 10th anniversary with general contractor Andrew Roby’s annual fundraising tourney for Make A Wish of Central and Western North Carolina. Team registration has passed, but viewing is free and there’s plenty for the kids to do with bouncy houses, face painting, a balloon artists, and appearances by mascots from the Panthers, Checkers, and Knights, as well as raffles for the adults and a chance to test your own tossing skills. 11 a.m. -4 p.m.; www.pitchinforwishes.com.
▪ The Tosco Music Party’s family-friendly variety show and music showcase returns to Knight Theater for the second of its tri-annual concerts with a mix of singalongs and original music and local and national touring acts. This time, guest performers include John Dungan, Bless These Sounds Under the City, Justin Fedor & Frank Bronson, A Deeper Shade of Blue, Gaelynn Lea, Emily Cope, and more. $14-$24. 7:30 p.m. www.blumenthalarts.org
▪ John Prine’s a legendary songwriter whose fans include other legendary songwriters Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson and Roger Waters, and whose influence extends to a newer generation of writers from Jason Isbell to the Avett Brothers. Belk Theater; $25-$79.50. www.blumenthalarts.org.
▪ Local musicians unite for the Hearts & Bands benefit at The Tipsy Burro (2711 Monroe Road) to raise money for the Matthews Free Medical Clinic, a volunteer-run healthcare facility. The Mannish Boys, Temperance League, Randy Franklin and the Sardines, house band the Loose Lugnuts (whose Wilson brothers own the restaurant) and more perform starting at 4 p.m. with no cover charge ... but donations are encouraged. https://www.facebook.com/Tipsyburro
▪ Actor Eric Braeden, who has starred on CBS’ “Young & the Restless” for nearly four decades, will sign copies of his autobiography “I’ll Be Damned,” at Park Road Books between 2 and 4 p.m. Released earlier this year, the book chronicles his youth in Germany during World War II, his immigration to the US, and his career in film and TV.
▪ The Midwood Market Block Party takes place 1-5 p.m. along Commonwealth Avenue between the Plaza and Pecan. Local merchants, live music, arts and crafts, and vendors line the street. If you’ve never ducked into locally owned shops like Stash Pad or CLTCH or venues like Snug Harbor or Petra’s, this is your chance to check out the whole ‘hood in one afternoon. https://www.facebook.com/events/116613055632437.
▪ Heirloom Restaurant and chef Clark Barlowe celebrate the health department’s recent approval of restaurants preparing meals with foraged mushrooms with a five-course tasting menu featuring the fungi as well as Barlowe’s mushroom farming and foraging friends. $60 per person, $25 for drink pairings.
▪ A week after making its Americana Festival debut and releasing two new albums, folk-rock favorite Deer Tick kicks off its Twice Is Nice Tour at Visulite Theatre. Charlotte is only the third date on the schedule, so the South can revel in the band’s amped live show and new songs before the rest of the country.
▪ Summer came and went without WEND 106.5 The End’s semi-annual Weenie Roast. Instead, the new rock station celebrates the coming autumn with a little less fanfare and a little more intimacy at the Fall Fiesta, featuring moody alt-rockers Joywave and Charlotte rock band Junior Astronomers, fresh from the Afro-Punk Festival in NYC. The Underground in the AvidXchange Music Factory.