Thursday, May 23
• Start your weekend off with some color as local author Peter Loewer (The Wild Gardener) visits the Swannanoa Library for a presentation on the wildflowers of WNC. 101 W. Charleston St. 6:30 p.m. Free. Info: 250-6486.
Friday, May 24
• RiverMUSIC, RiverLink and New Belgium Brewing‘s summer concert series at the RiverLink Sculpture and Performance Plaza, 117 Riverside Drive, presents stephaniesid (indie pop), Mary Frances and the Dirty Classics (soul) and DJ Molly Parti. New Belgium beer and cuisine from food trucks will be available. 5-10 p.m. Free.
• The annual Mountain Sports Festival will offer three days of hiking, biking, paddling, running, cyclocross, races, local beer, exhibitors, workshops and live jazz, blues, bluegrass, rock, funk and more. Held Friday, May 24 through Sunday, May 26 at Carrier Park in West Asheville. Free. See website for complete schedule.
• “Featuring two full days of great live music, the White Squirrel Festival, in Downtown Brevard, N.C., is the perfect way to experience everything this charming mountain community has to offer,” explains the festival’s website. “Best of all it’s FREE! Created to enhance and develop the business district of downtown, the event has evolved into one of the premier music festivals in the southeast, featuring national and regional artists including Edwin McCain, Steep Canyon Rangers, Jupiter Coyote and others. But, it’s also earned a reputation for showcasing many undiscovered artists and utilizing the abundant talent in the region. Whether it is jazz, bluegrass, singer-songwriter or rock and roll, the eclectic music in this beautiful setting provides something for everyone.” Festival also includes a Squirrel Box Derby, 5k and 10k races, vendors, merchants, artists, craftsmen, potters, painters, games, kid’s activities and more. Free to attend. Friday, May 24 through Sunday, May 26 in downtown Brevard. See website for complete schedule.
• Fans of live local music have surely seen Joshua Carpenter on stage at some point or another. The local multi-instrumenatlist performs with a host of local rock bands (Floating Action, Kovacs and the Polar Bear, The Hellsayers, Tyler Ramsey), but his solo shows are few and far between. This weekend, Carpenter reminds the local scene that he’s more than a hired gun as he steps into the role of frontman for a night of hooky, lo-fi retro-pop at Broadway’s. Impossible Vacation and Private Idaho open. 10 p.m. $5.
Saturday, May 25
• “Ooh La La Curiosity Market is a new artist’s market in Pritchard Park, located in the center of beautiful downtown Asheville, and will showcase the work of more than a dozen local artists,” according to its Facebook page. “Taking place over six Saturdays in the summer, beginning May 25, Ooh La La will feature works by local painters, leather smiths, jewelry makers, potters, up-cycled crafters and other curious delights, all beneath the colored canopies of large market umbrellas. In addition to the artists, the market will also feature live local music with three acts performing each Saturday, including everything from a solo saxophonist to folk, blues, acoustic and jazz acts. Other entertainment surprises are also in the works.” 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free.
• Looking to green up your home and add some life to indoor environments? B.B. Barnes, 36 Rosscraggon Road, hosts a class on container gardening with succulents, focusing on planting techniques, water needs and fertilization. 10:30 a.m. Free.
• “The annual Garden Jubilee Festival celebrates its 20th year in historic Downtown Hendersonville,” begins a website for this year’s event. “Garden Jubilee is historic Hendersonville’s premier lawn and garden show and one of the largest gardening shows in Western North Carolina. The Garden Jubilee is a spectacular two-day festival, held on Saturday, May 25 and Sunday, May 26. The Garden Jubilee Festival showcases more than 150 vendors lining Main Street, with the centerpiece of the festival at the Lowe’s Expo, located at the Visitors Information Center, 201 S. Main St. Southern Living garden expert, Bill Slack, and national lawn and garden representatives will present a series of free lectures throughout the two-day show. Local and regional nurseries will sell thousands of annuals, perennials, vegetables, herbs and hard-to-find plants on every block of the festival. … There will be handmade lawn furniture, jewelry, garden tools, yard art, planters, wind chimes, birdhouses, soaps and pottery.” 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Free.
• From a Clubland feature in this week’s Xpress, “If you live in Asheville and aren’t familiar with Floating Action, nothing we can say will rectify this grave oversight. Suffice it to say that the lo-fi/surf/soul/rock/everything-awesome outfit is a local treasure that never disappoints. And that’s not just coming from us. Earlier this year, My Morning Jacket‘s Jim James (an enthusiastic convert to the band) called Floating Action’s 2011 release, Desert Etiquette, ‘a relatively unknown masterwork of our times.’ The band returns to The Grey Eagle on Saturday, May 25 for its first Asheville performance of 2013.” C. Dalton (comedy) opens. 9 p.m. $10 in advance.
Sunday, May 26
• The seventh annual Americana Burlesque and Sideshow Festival kicks off Friday, but budget weary fans may want to wait until Sunday for its low-cost burlesque brunch. From the event’s website, “Come-to-Tatas: Sunday Burlesque Brunch, hosted by New Orleans’ very own Reverend Pastor Father Brother Ben Wisdom. … This relaxed event offers an idyllic cure for the end-of-ABSfest blues; great hangover food, affordable drinks, networking opportunities galore and more wickedly delightful entertainment. Last year the venue was filled to capacity with folks wanting a little more time for ABSfest!” Held at The LAB, 39 N. Lexington Ave. 12:30-1:30 p.m. $7. See website for full weekend schedule.
• Altamont Brewing Company, 1042 Haywood Road, hosts a young musician’s showcase to benefit Asheville Youth Mission, featuring rock, blues and soul music by The Company, Kontained, My Back Pocket, Outside Suburbia and more. $5.