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See & Do 

Thursday, August 24

If you're a Bob Inman fan -- or you just want to be convinced that Carolina communities can be galvanized behind professional theatre -- get away to the mountains where Blowing Rock Stage Company is restaging Crossroads. The Inman revival marks the opening of the breathtaking Hayes Performing Arts Center. Inside, the theater reminds you a little of Booth, a little of Halton, with a few rustic touches of its own. Outside there's a fine vista and copious parking, another Blowing Rock first! Nearly all of the cast is back from the original 2003 production, including Kim Cozort as the stylish Miss Lavinia, last seen here starring in The Goat at Actor's Theatre. What happens when Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show derails outside a sleepy burg in 1914? Find out through Sept. 10., Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 8pm with Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Tickets are $14-$28. Call 828-295-9627 or order online at www.blowingrockstage.com. (Tannenbaum)

Friday, August 25

If you've got a little one there's a good chance you know who the Wiggles are ... and if you're a parent whose house isn't littered with Wiggly CDs and DVDs then count your lucky stars! Actually the "Fab Four from Down Under," who are widely known for their super-popular TV show on the Disney Channel, can write a fun and catchy tune or 20 and at least two of them actually play an instrument during their concerts (ever seen Barney do that?). After all, they must be doing something right considering they beat both Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe last year as Australia's top grossing performer. And look at it this way, it could be worse. These guys are no where near as freaky looking as say, the Doodlebops. Regardless, Greg, Murray, Jeff and Anthony are heading to Bobcats Arena tonight for not one but two shows celebrating the group's 15th anniversary. Showtimes are 4pm and 7:30pm. Tickets cost $15.50-$32.50. Call 1-800-495-2295 or check out www.charlottebobcatsarena.com for more details. (Farris)

Check out a new musical, Climb My Mountain by Mike Reardon and Tommy Wrinn, at Pease Auditorium through Sunday -- and chime in with your opinions and critiques in post-performance talkbacks with the writers, director and cast. Reardon really does want your input in this workshop production so he can do touch-ups on script and score prior to the musical's 2007 premiere. Storyline: Tommy attempts to navigate the treacherous terrain of adolescence, braving breakups, schoolbooks and death. Yes, this Tommy can see! Featuring Hugh Loomis, John Price and Bogey Wingfield. Evenings at 8pm on Friday and Saturday with a 2:30 matinee on Sunday. Adult tickets are $15, students/seniors $10, CP students and faculty FREE. Call 704-330-6534. (Tannenbaum)

On the heels of its "Summer Retro Film Series" (which featured Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Breakfast Club, among others), Ballantyne Village Theatre now presents the Fall In Love Film Series. Each week, a popular love story will be screened at the venue, with matinees Saturday and Sunday and one evening show Friday. The series kicks off tonight with the 1990 romantic comedy Pretty Woman. Upcoming titles are Titanic (Sept. 1-3), Grease (Sept. 8-10), Gone With the Wind (Sept. 15-17) and, of course, Casablanca (Sept. 22-24). For times, tickets or other info, call 704-369-5101. (Brunson)

Saturday, August 26

Antigay fundies may rejoice that they kept gay pride out of Marshall Park this year, but they're not keeping Pride out of Charlotte. A week's worth of events culminates at Gateway Village with a festival to bring together gays, lesbians, transgender folks and their straight-but-not-narrow friends. All we can say is, better late than never. The free Pride Charlotte event is 11am to 6pm. For more information, visit www.pridecharlotte.com (Shugart)

Sunday, August 27

Charlotte's own rags-to-riches local heroes, the Avett Brothers, have seen audiences at their shows multiply from -- well, let's just say you could hardly call it an audience -- to drawing crowds in the high hundreds over the past few years. Don't look now, but they just got a spot on the shed sched., having booked a musical extravaganza at none other than Verizon Wireless Amphitheater. Along with the bluegrass-kicking Cowpunkers, An Avett Jubilee will also feature Donna the Buffalo, Avett favorite Langhorne Slim, Asheville's own Blue Rags and the Everybodyfields. For times and ticket information, go to www.ticketmaster.com, or call 704-522-6500. (Davis)

Despite reggae's rather one-dimensional treatment in North America, consider the genre's continued diversity: no less an American icon than Willie Nelson has recently guested on a Toots Hibbert release and released the controversial, all-roots Countryman. Brooklyn's Easy Star label is also making acclaimed waves with its Radiodread release. The Carolina Caribbean One Love Festival may not boast anything as cutting edge, but it'll certainly spotlight controversy via headliners Buju Banton and Capleton. These dancehall stars will be joined by legendary "Cool Ruler" Gregory Isaacs, Senegal's Waflash Band, up-and-coming Moroccan artist Elan and others. Sunday, Aug. 27, at Metrolina Expo, 2pm. Tickets: $50 VIP, $30 in advance, $10 kids 6--12 at the door, kids 1-- 5 free; available at www.theticketlounge.com or by phone 1-800-505-9849. (Crazy Horse)

Wednesday, August 30

During his decade-plus career, Todd Snider has careened off course (and into rehab) more than once and isn't shy when it comes to singing about it. Not surprisingly, having been to hell and back makes for pretty harrowing songwriting fodder. But there's more to Snider, an adept satirist who appears at the Visulite tonight. His records are bi-polar affairs that veer between humorous honky tonk vignettes with wry cultural/political commentary and country weepers custom-made to drive up your bar tab in short order. Snider's live gigs tend to rock more than the records, and he's touring behind the brand new one, The Devil You Know, which features a slew of Nashville heavy hitters old and new. With special guest Marshall Chapman, tickets are $15 in advance for the show, which gets underway at 9pm. For more information call 704-358-9200 or go to www.visulite.com. (Schacht)

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  • On Saturday, Oct. 21, hundreds gathered at Camp North End on Statesville Avenue for Charlotte's first black alternative music festival. We captured some of the bands in action on stage, but mostly we surveyed the grounds as fans, families, vendors and more lounged around the sprawling, colorful Camp North End site. It was a great day of music, food, fun, and sweet, autumn sunshine. (Photos by Mark Kemp)
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