This weekend on a shoestring

Thursday, July 5

• The Mountain Horticultural Crops Research Station, 455 Research Drive, Mills River, invites the public to “see the 10 varieties of hops being studied to help the growing local hops industry” during an open house event. More from the organization’s website, “The objective of our program is to help farmers improve the sustainability and profitability of their farms. We do this by conducting research and providing education on new crops, such as hops, truffles and medicinal herbs … This is not a full-fledged field day but an opportunity to view the 10 varieties in their second year of growth before we start harvesting them. The differences between varieties is pretty dramatic this year. We have experienced Downy Mildew, spider mites and now Japanese beetles, and how the varieties have reacted has been quite different. Jeanine Davis and Kelly Gaskill will be present to answer your questions.” 5-7 p.m. Free.

The Hop, 640 Merrimon Ave., invites pet owners to a doggie social, featuring a “special doggie performance” and a chance to contribute to the Animal Compassion Network while satisfying your sweet tooth. 50 percent of ice cream sales will benefit the organization. Free to attend. 6-8:30 p.m. Info: 254-2224.

The American Gonzos is, according to the band’s website, “a power trio with rock and roll attitude, louder than The Who, but with the ability to make the crowd get up and dance. Catchy melodies and bitchin’ riffs round out these North Carolina sons.” Catch the band at One Stop Deli and Bar, 55 College St., with Pleasures of the Ultraviolent. 10 p.m. $5.

Friday, July 6

• Enjoy the beauty of lush summer forests during an easy-to-moderate 3-mile hike to the ruins of Rattlesnake Lodge. Trip departs from Ox Creek Road, near MP 375.6 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Bring water and wear hiking shoes. Free. Info: 298-5330.

• “Music On Main Street showcases a diverse lineup of musical talents, from pop, oldies and rock to contemporary music,” according to a website for the weekly Hendersonville series. “Put on your dancing shoes and head to Music On Main Street for some good toe-tapping music, where there is a dance area in front of the stage. … The Hendersonville Antique Car Club hosts six classic car shows in conjunction with Music On Main Street during the concert season. The classic car shows are sponsored and coordinated by the Hendersonville Antique Car Club.” This week’s performance features music by Sound Investment (hits of the ‘60s and ‘70s) and a classic car cruise-in.” 7-9 p.m. Free.

• From an Xpress review last year, “On one hand, The Anam Cara Theatre Company‘s third installment of Naked Girls Reading was exactly what one would expect: naked women reading from an unadorned stage. But within the first five minutes it was clear that the production’s entertainment value had little to do with nudity, beyond the novelty of witnessing three performers casually disrobe and take their seats. The concept began three years ago in Chicago, and performances have been hosted by local companies across the country. … All and all, the night was playful, fun and laid back from start to finish, and the performers were relaxed, charismatic and engaging throughout. Of course nudity was always a part of the performance, and it was always supposed to be. But by the end of the night, it was an afterthought and something that seemed completely reasonable, proof that the performance’s mission had been fulfilled. From the program: ‘When naked or nearly-naked female bodies are displayed publicly, this typically occurs in a hypersexualized and objectifying manner. Furthermore, only certain, idealized versions of the female body are made visible … By contrast, Naked Girls Reading Ashevile has created a space in which real women are empowered to be naked publicly in a creative and autonomous manner.’” Catch the series’ seventh installment, selections about taboos, this weekend at 203 Haywood Road. 18 and over. 8 p.m. $10 in advance. Performances run through Saturday, July 7. Info: 545-3861.

Saturday, July 7

• Join RiverLink for a day of “capturing creatures, identifying and placing each species and discussing morphology and life history for each” during an educational program titled “Insight on Invertebrates.” Dress appropriately, according to a press release, “we will wrangle on land and in water.” Meets in Bent Creek parking area off of Wesley Branch Road. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Free. Info: 252-8474.

• Browse local art, jewelry and a variety of crafts at the Ooh La La Curiosity Market in downtown Asheville’s Pritchard Park. The monthly event also includes live music and a raffle to benefit Animal Haven, a local no-kill shelter. Free to attend. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Ween fans take note, Pepper Pulp, a local Ween tribute featuring members of Hello Hugo, John Wilkes Boothe and the Black Toothe, Baby Cowboy and more, pays homage to the alt-rock quintet with a decades-spanning set of Ween covers at The LAB, 39 N. Lexington Ave. 10 p.m. $5.

Sunday, July 8

• ”The Big Crafty revives the tradition of the community bazaar, a lively celebration of handmade commerce, featuring local food, beer, toe-tapping tunes and the fine wares of select indie artists and crafters,” according to a website for the biannual event. “… Our guiding principle is that buying handmade is good for the community, and our aim is to make doing so fun. … We extend a warm welcome to Asheville’s rich pageant of basement and backyard artists, its juried prize winners and those who delight in them.” Hosted by the Asheville Art Museum, 2 S. Pack Square. Free to attend. Noon-6 p.m. 


Thanks for reading through to the end…

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