It’s July 4th: What Are We Doing?


I thought with the weekend officially starting a day early, we might want to look at a few of the bigger events happening downtown this weekend. I’ve run across a few that didn’t get included on my “what to do downtown” list last Sunday and I want to mention those, as well. Please remember, the best way to make sure I include your event in my Sunday list is to create an event on Facebook and invite me. I can only include downtown events, though, so while I may appreciate your invitations to happenings outside the center city, I just can’t include them in my listings.

So, what’s happening this weekend? For starters, of course, there are the usual great things like the Blue Plate Special at the Visitor Center at noon. Today’s featured artist is Voodoo Pharmacology and Saturday (not on my weekly list) is The Caring Committee and Matt A. Foster. The Market Square Farmers’ Market will also be doing its usual thing from 9:00 – 2:00 on Saturday – just don’t get the bacon burgers, those have my name on them. And Union Avenue Books continues Storytime at 11:00 with Miss Anna.

Of course there is music all weekend. One act I didn’t mention in the earlier list is Left Foot Dave and the Magic Hats who are creating a bit of a blues buzz. They will play Scruffy City Hall at 10:00 PM tonight, just in time for your post-fireworks let-down. Tomorrow night it’s a battle of the souls with Soulfinger playing Pres. Pub and Soul Mechanic playing Scruffy City Hall. I also have to give a special shout out to Hudson K playing the Pilot Light Saturday night. It’s the start of their summer tour and promises to be a great show. The musical stars of the weekend will have to be the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra giving their free concert on the World’s Fair Park, followed by fireworks at 9:30.

But “wait,” you say, I love July the Fourth, but what about First Friday? Fret not, it is happening right there on the same day as the birthday celebration. I mentioned a couple of events on my upcoming events list (linked above), such as the monthly Gallery Nuance party and Carrie Hamilton’s exhibition at Union Avenue Books. Sapphire is featuring the art of Sally Govan along with a special drink by Amie. Additionally, the Art Market will have new work by Kathy Holland (landscapes), Gordon Fowler (sculpting), Stan Fronczak (artisan furniture), Janis Proffitt (woodworking) and Nelson Ziegler (woodworking). The Emporium will have an exhibit honoring the tenth anniversary of the renovation of the building entitled “Then and Now,” which features twenty-four artists showing a work from at least ten years ago and a current work. For all the best, most up-to-date information about First Friday always go to my friend Steve’s excellent site Knoxville First Friday.

So there’s plenty going on to keep you busy in between throwing down massive quantities of barbecue. And while you are at it, tell your children why we have fireworks and barbecue on the fourth of July. I’ve had the opportunity to ask literally hundreds of twelve-year-olds over the years what year and date was our country born and I’ve gotten almost universal blank stares. Teach your children well. And have a safe, happy holiday.

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