This weekend on a shoestring

Thursday, Dec. 9

Craggie Brewing Company (197 Hilliard Avenue, 254-0360) gets in the spirit of giving with a benefit for MANNA Food Bank featuring local brews, live music and pizza from Asheville Brewing Company. The Xpress will also be on hand to give away tickets to this year’s sold-out Christmas Jam. According to a release for the event, “This benefit highlights much of what Asheville is best known for:  the arts, craft beer and philanthropy.  Josh Stack, Manna’s Communications Director, says, ‘The folks at Craggie support MANNA by offering discounted beer to those who donate to the MANNA collection bin in their tasting room, they provide kegs for our fundraising events, and the owner, Bill Drew, also contributes financially.  Craggie’s attitude about giving and community involvement is exemplary.’” 5 p.m. $5 or five cans of non-perishable food items.

• If you’re dying to catch some holiday theater but the price tag’s got you down, here’s your chance. The Montford Park Players open a two-week run of A Christmas Carol at the Masonic Temple (80 Broadway Street) with “pay-what-we’re-worth night.” We’re not suggesting that they deserve any less than the usual $12 admission, but we’re pretty sure they’ll let you slide (just this once) with whatever you can afford. 7:30 p.m.

• You’ve probably noticed the frigid temperatures and painfully cold winds descending on Asheville, but have you stopped to consider what that means for the homeless? Help spread the warmth as Firestorm Cafe (48 Commerce Street, 255-8115) hosts a benefit for the Asheville Homeless Network, a “coalition of homeless people, formerly homeless people, and their allies in the Asheville Area coming together for the purpose of identifying and providing information on services in the areas of housing, food, and medical care, and other needs as identified,” according to its website. Music by The Lone Pilgrims, Nate Spencer, Joe Hallock and The Flat Creek Boys. 7 p.m. Warm clothing donations accepted for admission.

Friday, Dec. 10

• The Echo Gallery (8 Town Square Boulevard, Suite 160, 687-7761) proves that paper isn’t just for writing on with the opening of “12 Days of Christmas: Paper Sculptures by Leo Monahan.” Reads the website, “The exhibit includes a remarkable series depicting the ‘12 Days of Christmas.’  The Gallery is hosting a public reception on Friday, December 10, from 5 – 8 pm, and Leo will be giving an informal talk about his work on Wednesday, December 15, at 6 pm.”

• The One Bazar Holiday Music Festival — a month-long series of “mini-music festivals celebrating the holiday season” — continues at The Downtown Market (45 South French Broad Avenue, 255-8858) with a Friday performance by guitarist Woody Wood at 5:30 p.m. Saturday’s entertainment kicks off at 5 p.m. with folk singer Valorie Miller, followed by local bluegrass mainstay Sons of Ralph at 6 p.m. Free. 

• The Weaverville Downtown Business Association invites you to the 7th Annual Candlelight Stroll, “a charming small-town Christmas atmosphere” featuring carolers, chamber music, carriage rides, storytellers, warm drinks, appearances by the Montford Park Players and more. Santa will begin the festivities at 6 p.m. and remain onsite for photos. “A highlight of the evening,” adds a release for the event, “will be the official lighting of the Christmas tree at 7 p.m.” Free.

• Asheville’s Newsworthy Drawing Club is a collective of local artists who meet weekly to share and and illustrate unusual news events. Friday, they’ll celebrate the release of their third annual handbound retrospective, Newsworthy, with a reception at Harvest Records featuring music by Just Die!! frontman Matt Evans. 7 p.m. Free.


• “James Richards makes music to live but not for a living, balancing music alongside family, school and work,” reads the singers bio. “While Richards put musical roots in Asheville, NC in 2000 to live out his dream as a performing songwriter, he currently saves his voice and guitar mostly for campfire sing-a-longs, benefits, house parties, and places of worship. Richards also collaborates with local musicians, most notably on bass for Night’s Bright Colors. A classically trained singer steeped in self-described acousticfunkgrass, Richards looks to Lightnin’ Hopkins, Otis Redding, and Peter Gabriel among others for inspiration.” Catch him Friday at Luella’s Bar-B-Que (501 Merrimon Avenue, 505-7427). 8 p.m. Free.


Saturday, Dec. 11

• Scope out a variety of seasonal works as The Haen Gallery (52 Biltmore Avenue) presents an opening reception for “Wintertide,” a rotating exhibition showcasing the work of “an array of Haen Gallery artists.” 5:30-7:30 p.m. Free.

Blue Ridge Books (152 S Main Street, Waynesville, 456-6000) invites you to celebrate Christmas the old-fashioned, Appalachian way with “traditional mountain dulcimer music and song with Appalachian native Frances Smathers Cuttshaw. Hear stories of mountain Christmas customs, enjoy some homemade treats, and help us make simple old fashioned ornaments and decorate our tree. It will be a great event for adults and children to share!” 7-8:30 p.m. Free.


Sunday, Dec. 12

• “Lucy Tight & Wayne Waxing are Hymn for Her, a band that hails from anywhere they can park their trailer,” according to a press release. “Hymn For Her live, tour and record in their 16 foot, 1961 Bambi Airstream (comes with dog and baby). Their new release, LUCY & WAYNE and THE AMAIRICAN STREAM was entirely recorded in their classic trailer on a coast to coast U.S tour. They stopped at various campgrounds and friends’ driveways between shows, set up their gear in their Bambi/home recording studio, rolled tape and rocked out armed with 2 bullet mics, a three-stringed broom handle/cigar box, banjo, dobro, bass drum, hi-hat, and harp. This ‘lil duo causes massive earthquakes wherever they play!” They park the trailer in Asheville Sunday for a performance at Vanuatu Kava Bar (151 South Lexington Avenue, 505-8118). 8 p.m. Free.



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