Somehow we’re half way through August—where, dear reader, does the time go? Let’s not dwell on the unanswerable. Instead, let’s dive directly into all the cool stuff to do this weekend!

Bonus Todd

It’s not unusual for Todd Wright, Leesburg/Loudoun’s own multi-talented singer/songwriter/performer/hit maker/nurturer of raw talent, to disappear from the public eye for months at a time. Wright is a mover, a shaker. He’s a world traveler. He’s got two adorable dachshunds who are constantly taking Instagram by storm—the man is busy and in demand! That’s why it’s so damn exciting that he’ll appear on stage Friday night at Smokehouse Live! Folks, this is your chance to see Wright in his most essential state, shredding the crap out of the stage with originals, covers and tall tales to beat the band. The following is pure speculation, but this writer wouldn’t be surprised if Wright has a few aces up his sleeve for this show—there’s no telling who else might appear on stage or what crazy antics could happen. Best to just go see for yourself, starting at 9 p.m., especially since there’s no cover! Learn more here.

Rockin’ and Rollin’ Meadows

Only three dates remain in the 2017 Acoustic on the Green summer concert series—all are not-to-be-missed, but Saturday’s performance featuring Mike Meadows really does demand your attention. You may recall reading of Meadows’ incredible talent and fame back at the beginning of this year—if you missed his Hamilton Station show, this is your chance for redemption! Yes, he’s Taylor Swift’s guitarist, but he’s also a super chill, humble guy who, every now and again, enjoys knocking the socks off small, intimate crowds of revelers. Cool your heels at the Town Green starting at 7 p.m. Saturday, first to the tunes of Nicholas Potthoff before Meadows takes the stage. As always, admission is free, while pets, smoking and alcohol are prohibited.

Japanese woodblock print of Tanabata festivities in Edo (Tokyo), 1852, by Hiroshige: http://www.hiroshige.org.uk/hiroshige/36_views_fuji_1852/images/tanabata_festival.jpg

Pretty Lights

Franklin Park Arts Center is the place to be Sunday night for its artist reception and Tanabata celebration. This is no ordinary gallery opening—guests will not only enjoy the fine art on display as part of FPAC’s “Fish and the Sea” exhibit, but will also be delighted by colorful streamers, traditional Japanese garb and other appropriate trappings for Tanabata fun. The celebration is typically held between July and August, and honors the deities Orihime and Hikoboshi. The lovers are represented celestially by the stars Vega and Altair, respectively, and during this time are allowed to traverse the Milky Way galaxy that otherwise separates their union for a brief period of sweet embrace. In traditional fashion, participants Sunday will write poems on colorful paper to decorate a bamboo tree and, after dark, will release illuminated floating lanterns on the Franklin Park pond. FPAC organizers also will set up a gyotaku fish print station, inviting guests to make their own Fish and the Sea-inspired art! Tickets are $8 per person at the door—details are available at franklinparkartscenter.org.

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