SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — Holla for the weekend — and a long one at that! It’s time once again to raise your glasses, bottles and cans to Li’l Friday.
Li’l Friday isn’t for the fun police or naysayers — this little roundup is for folks to leave behind the negativity, let loose, have a little fun, and enjoy everything our corner of southeastern N.C offers. And in case you haven’t noticed: There are never a shortage of events.
In fact, this Memorial Day weekend, Li’l Friday is stacked with 13 happenings — and a bonus event for Tuesday (pinball league, anyone?). Just bookmark this page, and in between hours of soaking up the rays and swimming through the waves at the beach, your weekend is planned, easy-peasy.
The next four days offer live music in all genres, from jazz to reggae to Americana to garage rock. Plus, you’ll have an opportunity to dance it out with two local DJs, known for hosting retro dance parties, and who are doing a ’90s throwback Thursday, before continuing the fun Saturday.
The local arts council’s Fourth Friday Gallery Walk gets back into action this weekend since Covid shuttered it last March. Ten galleries will open after hours to showcase new exhibits featuring local artists. Then on Saturday a tap takeover will be underway at an Ogden neighborhood bottle shop, which also will feature more live music.
On Sunday, the Historic Wilmington Foundation will host its weekly Ten Tour. Guides introduce folks to structures imperative to Wilmington’s historic landscape and will talk about historic renovation.
Whatever you choose to do, may it bring plenty of cheer.
Have an event you want considered for inclusion in Port City Daily’s Li’l Friday Roundup? Email email@example.com by every Wednesday, noon.
THURSDAY, MAY 27
’90s Naughty Naughts Dance Party
Satellite Bar and Lounge • 814 Greenfield St. • Free
The blonde bombshells are back and ready to shake it naughty with you!
Known for their retro throwbacks on the needle and their party-starting fun all across town, Beehive Blondes throw dance parties that are themed and encourage attendees to dress to the nines while they let loose all their best moves.
Thursday night’s shindig at Satellite will center on all ’90s music, bump-n-grind classics included. The party takes place from 9:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., and it’s free to attend.
If you can’t make it, then you’ll have another chance to show off your best moves on Saturday, as the duo heads to Cloud 9 at downtown’s Embassy Suites — again, it’s free.
MORE THURSDAY HAPPENINGS:
Pack the Courts — Three of the lowercase leaders, Lily Nicole, Tim Joyner and Josh Zieseniss, will be in court today for allegedly vandalizing a “Trump for Wilmington” billboard last fall. Local activists are welcome to show up, masked, to city hall steps.
Jarrett Redmond — Live folk/Americana, rock, jazz and modern hits will be played by Jarrett Raymond at Rebellion, 15 S. Front St., from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
FRIDAY, MAY 28
Fourth Friday Gallery Walk
Across downtown Wilmington
The Arts Council of Wilmington/New Hanover County is officially relaunching the Fourth Friday Gallery Walk in downtown Wilmington. It will be its first month back since Covid-19 shuttered the after-hours gallery tours last March.
Participating galleries include the Wilma Daniels Gallery, ACES Gallery, Bryand Gallery, Burgwin-Wright House and Gardens, Century 21, Gallery Citrine, Port City Java, Port City Pottery and Fine Crafts, The Artworks, and Valhalla Gallery. Exhibits will be on display, and in some places, refreshments will be served and live music will be played.
Folks without a vaccine are asked to wear masks inside the galleries. It’s free to meander through the spaces from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
MORE FRIDAY HAPPENINGS:
Movie Night at the MLK Center — Need something fun to do with the family? A free movie night is offered at the MLK Center at 401 S. 8th Street. Screening will be “Mulan” (PG-13), appropriate for ages 7 to 12; crafts and snacks will be offered. Covid-19 protocols in place. Admission is free.
Tickets to Moon Taxi — The Nashville indie-rock band will be playing Greenfield Lake Amphitheater on Aug. 13. Tickets, $28-$33, will be on sale at 10 a.m. on Friday.
Benny Hill Quintet — Local sax player Benny Hill teaches jazz for the music department at Cape Fear Community College, and annually hosts a concert to help fundraise for the program. Friday at 7:30 p.m. Hill will take the stage with Jerald Shynett on trombone, Brad Merritt on piano, Doug Irving on bass and Jon Hill on drums. Joining them will be music student Marc Fatum.Though free to attend, audience members must have tickets for entry and remain socially distanced. The show will also be livestreamed; click here to find out more. Wilson Center, 703 N 3rd St. Donations welcome.
SATURDAY, MAY 29
An Evening with Resident Culture Brewing
Fermental • 7250 Market St. • Free
Fermental bottle shop in Wilmington will be hosting a tap takeover with Resident Culture Brewing on Saturday, featuring lagers, sour ales, hoppy beers, and more. The family-owned Charlotte brewery has a new taproom planned and will expand wholesale distribution by the end of the year, but first will bring some limited releases and standard faves for Wilmington beer lovers to try.
The celebration will last all day, with Delia Stanley taking over the mic with her blues-rock sounds at 2 p.m. and Starlight Speedway playing their brand of retro garage rock-and-soul at 7 p.m.
There will be tastings and giveaways, as well as a local food trucks Tasty Tees and Made in Venezuela on site. Fermental has an outdoor beer garden to soak up the vibes.
MORE SATURDAY HAPPENINGS:
Spread Love Reggae Festival — A night of reggae will be on deck at Burnt Mill Creek this evening. Taking the stage will be SunDub (5 p.m. – 6 p.m.), Edge Michael (6 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.), and Etana (7:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.). Doors open at 3 p.m. and tickets are $27.50.
Brilliant Beautiful Women presents: Pop Up and Pop Out! — A gathering of women who are independent business owners will take place at Maides Park from 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. The goal is to show support and solidarity among makes and creators, offering a chance to mix and mingle. Free!
EmergeOrtho 5k — Youth in grades 3rd through 8th are welcome to join the EmergeOrtho 5k at 8 a.m. at Mayfaire Town Center Saturday. The race is for Girls on the Run, Heart & Sole, and STRIDE participants, and is $25-$30 to participate. A virtual option is also available to run at one’s own time and place through May 29. Learn more here.
SUNDAY, MAY 30
Historic Wilmington Foundation • 211 Orange St. • Free
On Sundays the Historic Wilmington Foundation leads small groups of 10 through downtown on its Ten Tour. Led by guest speakers and even executive director Travis Gilbert, tourists learn stories and the background on structural impacts in the community, not to mention they’re referential points in history. There are two tours each week at 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
The May 30 tour will focus on “Adaptive Reuse: Salvaging History and Saving Environment” and will be hosted by guest guide Andy McGlinn, chair of Cape Fear Sierra Club. McGlinn will speak to the renovation of St. Thomas Church, Burgwin-Wright House, Edward Teach Brewing, and the Chestnut Street branch of the New Hanover County library, the former Belk-Beery department store, which could be demolished if Project Grace plans proceed.
The tours are free and folks are required to be masked and remain socially distanced. Tourists will meet at HWF headquarters, 211 Orange St.
MORE SUNDAY HAPPENINGS:
Zaraoke: A DIY Bad Singing Experience — Barzarre is bringing the worst vocalists together in one room as part of its “bad-decision-Sunday programming.” Zaraoke will start up at 8 p.m. for all who wish to show off their chops. Plus, there will be an arts market for the “creative fringe” makers of Wilmington. “Summertime and the Livin’s Steezy Pop-Up Creators’ Market” will feature arts, clothes, jewelry and more for sale.
BONUS EVENT: OK, so it’s not a weekend event, but it’s easily going to provide endless weekends of entertainment as you practice your pinball skills. Yep, that’s right: Pinball season has arrived. Cape Fear Wine and Beer is accepting team members on its Cape Fear Flipper Club 2021 Summer Pinball league — sanctioned by the International Flipper and Pinball Association (IFPA) — starting Tuesday, Jun. 1. It’s limited to the first 16 people, with registration beginning at 6:30 p.m. and group play lasting from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. The official start date for the co-ed summer league kicks off Jun. 8. and lasts for 10 weeks. All experience and skill levels are welcome, but must be over 21. More info can be directed to Lector Bennet at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have events you want considered for Li’l Friday? Email email@example.com