French Broad River Festival
It's officially festival season: The 14th annual French Broad River Festival takes over Hot Springs with a weekend’s worth of the great outdoors, water, sports and music. Headliners include BoomBox, The Bottle Rockets, Great American Taxi and Snake Oil Medicine Show. Tickets ($75) include camping, bands, registration fees for whitewater and biking events (if you B.Y.O. boat or bike) and a raffle ticket. Friday, April 29-Sunday, May 1. frenchbroadriverfestival.com.
Mount Moriah is not (as Google would have us believe) a Baptist church. Instead, it's a Durham-based indie/folk rock band. But they do list "secular gospel" in their description and the haunting-soft voice of vocalist Heather McEntire can certainly move the spirit. The band's self-titled debut LP was called, by Indyweek.com, "a dark country record in the classic confessional sense." It's accompanied by a moody/arty DVD of videos that take both the dark and the country to the next level. Mount Moriah plays the LAB's backstage on Friday, April 29 with Kovacs & the Polar Bear and The Tender Fruit. 10 p.m. lexavebrew.com.
Dining Out For Life after-party
First you get to raise funds for the Western North Carolina AIDS Project by dining out at any of 100 local restaurants (all of whom donate 20-percent of their sales on Thursday, April 28, to the local organization). Then you can celebrate with the Dining Out For Life Appreciation After Party at the Grove House complex. DOFL participants get in for free ($8 otherwise), entertainment includes Russ Wilson & his Nouveau-Passé Orchestra, Kat Williams, Asheville comedians, acts from the Runaway Circus and many more. And 20-percent of sales will go to WNCAP. 7 p.m.-3 a.m. thegrovehouse.com.
Young Couples formed in Asheville three years ago, when they were even younger. And known as Pavane and Galliard. Fronted by songwriting team Jared Hooker and Lauren Habenicht, the band blends classical training with a heady mix of pop, Caribbean, jazz and rock influences for a sound that’s chic, fun and all their own. They release their debut CD at the Grey Eagle on Thursday, April 28. 8:30 p.m. $8. (Millie Palmer and Will Beasley, and Common Foundation also perform; Young Couples plays the middle set.) thegreyeagle.com.
World Peace and Other 4th-Grade Achievements
This documentary "depicts the transformation that happens as a class of students at a neighborhood public school work to solve all of the earth’s crisis with a balanced budget." (Hint: The fourth-grade didn't face a shut down.) It premiered at South by Southwest in 2010, and now the film is on tour. It makes a stop at Diana Wortham Theatre on Wednesday, May 4 at 6:45 p.m. The documentary's star, John Hunter, and director, Chris Farina, will host a Q&A after the screening. A panel discussion with local education leaders follows. $16 non-teachers/free for K-12 teachers. All proceeds benefit the World Peace Game Foundation. worldpeaceavl.com.
Rites of Spring
Bountiful Cities and French Broad Food Coop team up for Rites of Spring, an outdoor celebration featuring food, beer and wine, live music, kids’ activities and a Maypole dance. The fun starts at 4 p.m. with a May Day ceremony, and music (from Jason Daniello, Shane Perlowin and Silver Machine) kicks off at 5 p.m. Say organizers, “May Day began as an ancient celebration of fertility and new growth, and, more recently, is known as International Worker’s Day, celebrating organized labor movements all over the world. The communities that make up Bountiful Cities and French Broad Food Coop think that it’s the perfect holiday to celebrate 35 years of our community-owned grocery store and 10 years of community-based urban agriculture in Asheville!” $10 for food, $2 wristband to drink, drinks by donation. More details at bountifulcitiesproject.org.