Sunday, June 26, 2022

Li’l Friday Roundup: Carolina Beach Music Festival, Shakespeare on the Green, Dierks Bentley

“SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical” is taking place at The Wilson Center Thursday night. (Courtesy photo)

Thursday, June 2

‘SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical’
The Wilson Center, 702 S. Third St. • Tickets start at $25

Rescheduled from Jan. 21 and 22, “SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical” is taking place at the Wilson Center at 7:30 p.m.

The disco era’s icon started out as a gospel choir girl from Boston who took to the stage for the first time at age 10. By the ’70s, she had become a worldwide diva, breaking records and barriers with hits like “Love to Love You Baby,” “Bad Girls,” and “Hot Stuff.”

“SUMMER” debuted in 2017, with book by Colman Domingo, Robert Cary, and Des McAnuff. The musical traverses Summer’s life, all of its trials and tribulations, and features 20 of her greatest hits.

OTHER THURSDAY HAPPENINGS
Boardwalk Blast with Carl Newton’s Review — Carolina Beach’s Boardwalk Blast will welcome the dance band sounds of Carl Newton’s Review on the stage at the gazebo. The seven-piece act will perform from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thereafter, fireworks will be on display over the boardwalk. The event is free to attend.

Live at the Park with The Tonez — Leland also is hosting free music at 6:30 p.m. with party band The Tonez. ​​Blankets, chairs and picnics are welcome. It’s a free show, but cash will be needed to order food from Cheesesteak Hustle. The event takes place at Founders Park at 113 Town Hall Dr.

The Phantom Playboys — Riverlights’ Smoke on the Water at 3704 Watercraft Ferry Ave. will host the five-piece Rockabilly swingers known to bring the party every time they take the stage. The show is free and starts at 6:30 p.m.

Port City Salsa Splash takes place all weekend, from June 3-5 at various locations, featuring workshops, social dancing and demonstrations from nationwide talent. (Courtesy Port City Salsa Splash)

Friday, June 3

Port City Salsa Splash
Various locations • Tickets/weekend pass: $10-$135

Things are heating up in  Wilmington this weekend  as Port City Salsa Splash gets underway. There will be plenty of dance workshops and lectures, as well as social dancing opportunities, exhibitions and demonstrations. 

The event is celebrating 10 years and bringing in nationwide guest artists, including Salsa Synergy (Orlando, FL), Tina Cavicchio (Boston, MA), Dakhota Romero (Dallas, TX), Betto Herrera (Raleigh, NC), Eduardo Diaz (Charlotte, NC) and Rachel Lewis (Atlanta, GA). Music will be provided by DJ Renzo (Washington, DC) and DJ Julio “Sabroso” Marrero (Raleigh, NC).

The event officially kicks off Friday at the Studio Collective (5629 Oleander Dr., #106) with a 2 p.m. workshop and lecture. The party continues with a night workshop, performances and social dance from 8 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. 

Saturday’s workshops, performances and parties take place at UNCW’s Burney Center, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Alcohol is not served or sold onsite.

Sunday will wind down the weekend with yoga and Tai Chi at Wrightsville Beach from 11 a.m. to noon. Then dancers will convene for more workshops at The Studio Collective and a “wine’d down social” at 3:30 p.m.

More information can be found here.

OTHER FRIDAY HAPPENINGS
Dierks Bentley — Country star Dierks Bentley kicks off the summer leg of his “Beers on Me” Tour in Wilmington, featuring openers Ashley McBryde and Travis Denning. The country artist is known for hits like “Somewhere on a Beach” and “What Was I Thinkin'” and received a star on the Music City Walk of Fame in April. Tickets start at $50.  

First Friday Bluegrass Series — Watermans Brewing (1610 Pavilion Pl.) will be pickin’ and a grinnin’ each first Friday of the month, as Tideline String Band takes the stage from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The show is free, but donations will be accepted for Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard, a reliable resource for food insecurity in Wilmington since 1985.

Smallers Market at Biggers — An early summer outlet sale and celebration is taking place at Biggers Market, 6250 Market St., all weekend. There will be beer and live music from John Lewis (Friday, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.), Nimara and Breet (Saturday, noon to 3 p.m.) and $100 Monkey (Saturday, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.), and Emily Burdette (Sunday, noon to 3 p.m.). The market’s fresh goodies will be for sale as part of a “Beach & Barn Popup Outlet.”

Airlie Gardens Concert Series — Surrounded by the 400-plus-year-old live oak, the Airlie Gardens concert series will debut with reSoul, an R&B outfit performing hits by  Gloria Gaynor, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, Bruno Mars, Alicia Keys and others from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Picnics, blankets and chairs are welcome; vendors will not be onsite selling food. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased here

Sunset Cruise with Live Music — From 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wilmington Water Tours is hosting its live music sunset cruise with music by Ron Wilson and Cary Benjamin.  A full bar is onboard to enjoy beverages while cruising the Cape Fear River. Boarding begins at 212 S. Water St. and tickets are $35.

Annually, hundreds of beach music lovers convene surfside for the Carolina Beach Music Festival, which takes place Saturday, featuring Jim Quick and Coastline, The Band of Oz and North Tower. (Courtesy Pleasure Island Chamber)

Saturday, June 4

Carolina Beach Music Festival
3 Cape Fear Boulevard, Carolina Beach • Tickets: $40

Kick off those loafers and prepare to feel the sand beneath your feet! Crowds will flock to Carolina Beach for the 36th annual beach music festival taking place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Performing their brand of R&B, soul, oldies, Top 40, and of course Southern beach music will be Jim Quick and Coastline, The Band of Oz and North Tower.

Hosted by the Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce, the annual event welcomes hundreds to the beach to enjoy the sounds under the sun, and enjoy shagging on the surf. Tickets are $40 and beverages and food is allowed. No glass or pets are allowed. The music begins at 11 a.m. and gates open at 10 a.m. Entry can be accessed through the Carolina Beach Boardwalk.

More information and tickets can be found here.

OTHER SATURDAY HAPPENINGS
Summer Job Fair Taking place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Pender County Library (103 S. Cowan St.), a summer job fair will introduce teens and newly graduated students, ages 15 to 25, to local opportunities. Area employers will be on site and library computers can be used to fill out applications and apply for workers permits as needed. Representatives from NC Works will also be available to help with career services and advise on résumé questions.

Beauty and the Beast Ballet At the Wilson Center (703 N. 3rd St.) on both June 4 (6 p.m.) and 5 (3 p.m.), the famed love story of Belle and the Beast will come to life on stage, hosted by the Wilmington Conservatory of Fine Arts and nonprofit Turning Pointe Dance Company. The fairytale includes performances by local students and professional dancers. Tickets are $28.

Venus flytraps, found only in this part of North Carolina. This photo was taken by Will Stuart, photographer for the 'Weird Native Plants' book and a guest speaker at the third annual Native Plant Festival this weekend.
The Flytrap Frolic will feature guided tours, games and activities for folks to learn about the carnivorous plants indigenous to the area. (Port City Daily/File)

Flytrap Frolic — The Coastal Land Trust is bringing back a popular event after a two-year hiatus. The Flytrap Frolic takes place at the Stanley Rehder Carnivorous Plant Garden located behind Alderman Elementary, 3800 Canterbury Rd. The event takes place 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and is family-friendly, showing off the indigenous Venus flytrap as well as pitcher plants and sundews. There will be guided tours to learn about the various carnivorous plants, how they trap prey and pollinate, and survive amid a changing environment. Kids will be able to make flytrap puppets and flame crowns, plus there will be games and booths feature local conservancy and nature groups. Registration is required: www.coastallandtrust.org/frolic.

Fitz and the Tantrums and St. Paul and the Broken Bones — LA-based Fitz and the Tantrums is bringing their indie pop energy to Live Oak Bank Pavilion. They will be joined by the Alabamian soul band St. Paul and the Broken Bones, which just released “The Alien Coast” in January. Tickets start at $20.

Sunday, June 5

Cape Fear Shakespeare on the Green
Greenfield Lake Amphitheater, 1920 Amphitheatre Dr. • Free

It’s year 29 that the Cape Fear Shakespeare, Ltd., in association with the City of Wilmington, is bringing free outdoor plays featuring the Bard’s famed works to Greenfield Lake Amphitheater.

William Shakespeare’s “The Winter’s Tale” was written in 1623 and takes place across 16 years. It follows the story of a king whose pregnant wife — accused of infidelity — dies and the baby is exiled, to be reared by shepherds. The story follows a tale of vengeance, estranged family, friendships restored, and star-crossed lovers beating the odds to be together. Directed by Cherri McKay, the tale is one of “remorse, forgiveness and second chances.”

It’s free to attend and picnics are welcome. The play is being presented June 3-5, 10-12, 17-19, and 22-23, at 8 p.m. each day, rain or shine. Gates open early at 6:30 p.m. and concessions are sold onsite too.

OTHER SUNDAY HAPPENINGS
Plant Sale Fundraiser — A group of volunteers make up Plants for Progress and host plant sales that act as fundraisers for local causes. They’ll have a variety of plants for sale at Cape Fear Wine and Beer downtown at 139 N Front St. from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Proceeds will be donated to Fresh Start Rescue Inc., an animal rescue located in coastal North Carolina. Houseplants, succulents, cacti, herbs, annuals, and perennials will be available.

Here and Queer Festival — It’s PRIDE month, which means celebrations abound throughout town for the LGBTQIA community and allies. At Hi-Wire Brewing (1020 Princess St.) from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. there will be a market featuring over 20 local LGBTQ+ vendors, live music, and a free drag show. 

Goat Yoga — Start off your Sunday with a good stretch and some cuddles. Flytrap Brewing is offering a goat yoga class, hosted by Movement Works and Lazy Day Farm and Petting Zoo from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. at 319 Walnut St. Tickets are $30 and include a freshly brewed craft beer from Flytrap.

Chatham Rabbits Album Release Show — A North Carolina Americana duo, Chatham Rabbits, is hosting two shows in honor of their third album, “If You See Me Riding By,” dropping June 3. There will be an intimate release show Sunday at 3:30 p.m., featuring just the husband-and-wife team, Austin and Sarah McCombie. That night at 7 p.m., a full band will perform, with openers The Local Honeys. Chatham Rabbits are known for their storytelling style, which highlights the Tar Heel State’s cultural, historical and musical traditions. Tickets are $25 in advance and $28 day of the show ($5 surcharge for under-21 attendees) at Bourgie Nights (123 Princess St.).

Port City Comedy Jam — Nine comics and poets have signed up for Port City Comedy Jam’s “Comics and Poets” series taking place at Thalian Hall’s Ruth and Bucky Stein Theater at 3 p.m. Tickets are $22.50 and the show is hosted by Tru Spit, with performances by Poessence Spokenword, Hunter Sutton, Travis Stewart, Addell From Kingstree, Dallas Brown Jr., Mary Curry, Vernetta Bentley-Davis and music by DJ Motiv. Show starts at 3 p.m.


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Shea Carver
Shea Carver is the editor in chief at Port City Daily. A UNCW alumna, Shea worked in the print media business in Wilmington for 22 years before joining the PCD team in October 2020. She specializes in arts coverage — music, film, literature, theatre — the dining scene, and can often be tapped on where to go, what to do and who to see in Wilmington. When she isn’t hanging with her pup, Shadow Wolf, tending the garden or spinning vinyl, she’s attending concerts and live theater.

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