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See & Do Picks 

Wednesday, August 17

Writer, international flight attendant, translator, NPR commentator and foul-mouthed CL columnist Hollis Gillespie was named Writer's Digest Breakout Author of the Year for her debut collection of essays, Bleachy-Haired Honky Bitch (HarperCollins). Her new book, Confessions of a Recovering Slut, is another collection of edgy, insightful and hilarious essays and vignettes, mainly gathered from her CL column, "Moodswing." Hollis will discuss and sign copies of Confessions at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in SouthPark at 4345 Barclay Downs Dr., beginning at 7pm. For more info, call 704-602-9820. (Grooms)

Thursday, August 18

Demonstrating again that a fledgling filmmaker has no better friend within the Charlotte city limits, The Light Factory renews its support of area artists tonight by presenting the Fifth Annual Carolina Filmmakers Showcase. A collection of short works (narrative, documentary, animation and experimental) by various North and South Carolina talents, the event will be held in The Light Factory's Knight Gallery at Spirit Square. Among the works being screened are Blindsided by Will Clegg (whose feature-length film The Rest of Your Life enjoyed a successful showing this past June at the Visulite Theatre) and Alien God by Jenn Jacobson and Little Shiva (CL's Hot Linx columnist). Doors open at 6pm, films start at 7pm, and a Q&A session with some of the contributing filmmakers will be held after the screening. Admission is $7 at the door; for details, call 704-333-9755. (Brunson)

Friday, August 19

Sights of War: A Collection of Perspectives is a new exhibit that examines recent global conflicts from several different vantage points. Various artists and photographers use their particular media to examine conflicts in Rwanda, Croatia, Haiti, Jerusalem, India, Afghanistan and Iraq. The exhibits include a video installation that explores the passive observer, photos examining the chaos of war, as well as photo-based sculptural pieces that offer a perspective of home life during wartime and shifting media coverage. The exhibit will take place at The Light Factory's Knight Gallery in Spirit Square. It will be on display until October 3. For more information go to: lightfactory.org. (Boykin)

Neosoul crooners Mint Condition weave lush ballads with just the right amount of funk, while brushing aside needless overproduction. The group is back after a six-year hiatus with Livin' The Luxury Brown, a new set of tunes featuring solid writing, harmonizing and funky music. The Minneapolis/St. Paul posse performs tonight at Amos' Southend. Tickets are $30. René of 80s soul duo René & Angela will open. For more details call 704-377-6874 or visit amossouthend.com. (Shukla)

The Charlotte rock en español festival Carlotan' Rock returns for its second year, with dates this time in both Charlotte and Asheville. Carlotan' Rock is the first and only Latin Rock festival in the Carolinas. Five local bands -- La Rúa, La Marea, Bakalao Stars, Mentes Dementes and One more Time -- will share the stage with Miami's Sóniko and Atlanta's DiaZero in what organizers La Rúa promise to be an even bigger and louder event than last year. Doors open at 7pm at Skándalo's on Independence Blvd. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door. Go to www.carlotanrock.com or call 704-458-8072 for more info. (Lauren MacLeod)

Saturday, August 20

Local lovers of acoustic and electric guitars will flock to the Oasis Shrine Auditorium this weekend for Bee-3 Vintage's Carolina Guitar Show. Aug. 20, 10am-6pm; Aug. 21, 10am-4pm. Admission is $8 ($1 off if you bring an instrument). Children 12 and under are free with an adult. For more info, go to www.bee3vintage.com or call 828-298-2197. (Lauren MacLeod)

Some sports impart to young people the wisdom of playing fair, some can rally a nation together, and others provide metaphors for life. Then there are those sports wherein stuff is pounded real good. Tonight, the Circle K Back-to-School Monster Truck Bash returns to the Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway, with the gargantuan Bigfoot headlining this ongoing saga of Man's triumph of the seemingly uncrushable. The night is also a showcase for CRASHCars, a new division featuring stock cars with cartoon-style themes. Don't miss the Circle K Pre-Race Pit Party, where you can have your picture snapped alongside your favorite trucks. Spectator gates open at 5pm; on-track action takes off at 7:30. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. For more info and to purchase tickets, go to www.lowesmotorspeedway.com. (William Fonvielle)

Don your flapper finery or your gangster get-up and head to the Great Gatsby Gala at the Hyatt Hotel near SouthPark tonight. This annual event benefits the National MS Society and features a swing band, a costume contest, a dance competition and a silent auction. Food and beverages are provided by some of Charlotte's finest restaurants. The Roaring 20s come back to life at 8pm. Tickets are $35 in advance and $40 at the door. For more details, go to www.nationalmssociety.org/ncp or call 704-525-2955. (Vespa)

Sunday, August 21

The Charlotte Museum of History presents a farewell event for its bilingual photographic exhibition Vecinos/Neighbors today from 1-4pm. CL contributor Catalina Kulczar's collection depicts Charlotte-area Latinos in all walks of life, from day laborers to community leaders. The afternoon consists of hands-on activities for all as well as refreshments. Admission is free. For more details, call 704-568-1774 or go to charlottemuseum.org. (Shukla)

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