There’s so much to spork this week, you better start shovelin’. We got big news and it might take an extra tine or two to get it all in.

Photographer George Masa’s early 20th-century photos of the Great Smoky Mountains must be seen at the Asheville Art Museum before July 5. Filmmaker Paul Bonesteel, who made an excellent documentary about Masa and his mysteries, has some big news of his own involving his project on Carl Sandburg.

For starters, Lexington Avenue just got more bazaar. Starting Saturday, May 23, the courtyard off N. Lexington Avenue (next to Minx, and where Vincent’s Ear used to be, sigh) will host the twice-a-month Lexington Avenue Bazaar. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., browse eclectic arts and crafts made by local designers, and this Saturday listen to the fun and folk of Now You See Them. Oh yes, and Bouchon will have a food stand with crepes and pommes frites (French fries, y’all). Info at www.lexingtonbazaar.blogspot.com.

If that’s not bazaar enough for you, Rosetta Star (proprietess of crave-tastic and good-for-you eatery Rosetta’s Kitchen) announces the upcoming Asheville People’s Market, a flea-market style shindig in the parking lot across from Rosetta’s (93 N. Lexington Ave.). The market will be 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays from June to October. Vendor space is $10. Interested? E-mail rosettastarshine@gmail.com.

While we’re talking bargains, you can feel good about this show in more ways than one: The Bombs Away Cabaret, a brand-new cabaret/burlesque collective, presents Risque Business at the Asheville Arts Center on Friday and Saturday, May 22 and 23. Featuring performers from the wildly talented Runaway Circus, belly dancing, comedy and the Bombs Away Band (lead by local music mogul Aaron Price), Risque Business has it all: Singing, dancing, clowning, merry fun. Friday’s show is $12, Saturday’s show is $15 and includes an afterparty with gypsy collective Sirius.B. Plus 100 percent of the proceeds go to fighting breast cancer.

Still talking money, but first—if you haven’t gone to see the drably- named but wholly-inspiring exhibit Mapping the Mountains: The Photographs of George Masa at the Asheville Art Museum, run, don’t walk. Seriously. It’s up until July 5. We were watching PBS the other night and caught the new one-hour version of The Mystery of George Masa. This guy was bloody intrepid—a rail-thin Japanese immigrant who lived in the thick of the Great Smoky Mountains in the early part of the last century, which must have been some intense business. So Masa and his ol’ pal Horace Kephart tromped all around the Smokies before there were even navigable trails. Masa lugged his old-school equipment up the steepest slopes and took some most amazing shots. The documentary is riveting; Masa’s photos, a blessing.

Local filmmaker Paul Bonesteel made Mystery, and he has some big news about a different project. Bonesteel Films and the Friends of Carl Sandburg at Connemara just earned a $25,000 grant for further work on The Day Carl Sandburg Died, a documentary that looks at the life and work of the great American master. Info at www.bonesteelfilms.com.

Bob Dylan should be happy about that, since he’s a Sandburg fan, which he disclosed recently in Rolling Stone (a story well worth reading and a sly cover photo). He’s also a fan of kids playing outside and Billy Joe Shaver, bravo.

The fun at the Bombs Away Cabaret and burlesque performance goes to benefit breast cancer charities.

Also on the films front, there’s a triple bill of low-fi music and film at The Grey Eagle on Thursday, May 21. It’s all for the DVD release of the existential drama Neutral, a movie that local filmmaker Joe Chang shot in Asheville with a cast of mostly Asheville folks. On Thursday, Night’s Bright Colors, Kovacs & the Polar Bear and Chang’s own project will play, and they’ll show clips from Neutral. Cool things about Neutral: It was shot with actual film (!), Chang lived in his truck for six months to pay for it and XpressKen Hanke gave it a three-and-a-half-star review.

Getting ‘round to music, there are a couple of shows to note, and do note ‘em or you’ll be sorry. That’s not a threat—it’s just the truth. Psych-rock purveyors Hopewell (featuring ex-Mercury Rev members) join forces with Asheville’s renowned lyrical shamans of noise, Wayne Robbins & The Hellsayers. Those two are confirmed for Broadway’s on Saturday, May 23. Also on the bill is the recently-profiled Electric Owls. Hopewell just released Good Good Desperation, which is more good good than desperate. Info at www.hopewell.tv.

Also noteworthy: Brevard’s White Squirrel Festival happens this weekend. Don’t be confused by the name—the May 23 and 24 festival has quite the rockin’ lineup. Also, white squirrels are supercool. Check out rising star Shannon Whitworth, jam-rock pioneers Jupiter Coyote, steel pan wunderkind Jonathan Scales, cornpone-humorist-with-heart Michael Reno Harrell and bluegrass sensations Steep Canyon Rangers. And Galen Kipar. Here’s what we’ll tell you about Galen Kipar: He played in Pritchard Park every week last summer as part of Arts2People’s music series, and we never got tired of hearing his songs out the window (which is more than we can say for the accordion buskers). The guy’s got mad talent. Info at www.whitesquirrelfestival.com.

If you can’t make it to the festival, catch the Galen Kipar Project at the Emerald Lounge on Friday, May 22. That show will bring a bit of Brevard to Asheville: drummer and former Aquarium Rescue Unit-er Jeff Sipe‘s new band, the Odd Meters.


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