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The 2016 Summer Guide

Where to go and what to do between now and Labor Day.

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DAY 39: Garbage at the National.
  • DAY 39: Garbage at the National.

DAY 39: Monday, July 25
Go back in time for your alt rock. The ’90s hit-makers of Garbage play at the National. 8 p.m. $34.50.

DAY 40: Tuesday, July 26
Visit Hollywood while you’re above ground. Learn things about Hollywood Cemetery that you never knew. It’s part of Richmond History Tours, presented by the Valentine. 10-11:30 a.m. $5-$15.

DAY 41: Wednesday, July 27
Revel in melodic angst. Post-everything curmudgeons the Swans return to Richmond for a night at the Broadberry. Noise merchant Okkyung Lee opens. Buy your tickets soon. The group’s show last year sold out in a matter of hours. 8 p.m. $25-$30.

DAY 42: Thursday, July 28
Up your ocean understanding. The 2013 documentary film, “Ocean Frontiers II: a New England Story for Sustaining the Sea,” hits the big screen at the Virginia Historical Society. Panel discussion follows. 5:30 p.m. Free.

Electric Football World Championships and Convention, July 29-31.
  • Electric Football World Championships and Convention, July 29-31.

DAY 43: Friday, July 29
Shrink your football, not your obsession. Electric Football enthusiasts gather in Richmond for the Electric Football World Championships and Convention from July 29-31 at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel. Sponsored by Tudor Games and the Miniature Football Coaches Association, this is the only place on earth where this many people will be playing what arguably was the most disappointing game of the 20th century. You’ll be amazed by how far it’s come. See the documentary of last year’s convention filmed by Richmond’s Porter Street Films at

DAY 44: Saturday, July 30
Reflect on days gone by. Watch Neil Simon’s semi-autobiographical comedy of the 1930s era, “Brighton Beach Memoirs,” at Hanover Tavern (July 15-Aug. 28). Direction by Steve Perigard.

DAY 45: Sunday, July 31
Watch creativity under pressure. The 48 Hour Film Project challenges small teams with minimal, but mandatory elements to include in a short film, which must be created and shot in 48 hours. All that work’s done. But now you can watch the competition’s best-of screening at the Byrd Theatre.

DAY 46: Butterflies Live at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.
  • DAY 46: Butterflies Live at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.

DAY 46: Monday, Aug. 1
Commune with the butterflies. Did we forget to mention that June 20-26 was National Pollinator Week? No matter, you can visit Butterflies Live at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden from April 15-Oct. 9. The exhibit’s open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

DAY 47: Tuesday, Aug. 2
Meet your neighbor. National Night Out is “an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, better places to live.” Come on out and keep the porch lights on.

DAY 48: Wednesday, Aug. 3
Let art start a conversation. If you haven’t seen the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ big summer exhibit, “Kehinde Wiley: a New Republic,” what are you waiting for? The young artist’s work, some 60 paintings and sculptures, portray black men and women through the lens of the masters.

DAY 48: “Kehinde Wiley: a New Republic” at VMFA.
  • DAY 48: “Kehinde Wiley: a New Republic” at VMFA.

DAY 49: Thursday, Aug. 4
Do some browsing. “Loosely Loaded,” works by Philadelphia-based textile painter Emily E. Erb, are on display at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond. Through Aug. 28.

DAY 50: Friday, Aug. 5
Get a musical head start. The folk festival comes early to Richmond with two shows at Balliceaux. Internationally acclaimed booty-shakers Meschiya Lake and the Little Big Horns hit the back-room stage at 10 p.m. About 24 hours later, Mamadou Kelly, Malian calabash player and original member of Ali Farka Toure’s group, ignites the classic Sahelian dance party on the same stage. $10 per show. 355-3008.

DAY 51: Saturday, Aug. 6
Join the bicycle squad. The Anthem Moonlight Ride gets family and friends together on a 15- or 8-mile course. The summer evening community ride starts and finishes at Sports Backers Stadium, where the night ends with pizza, ice cream, beer and live music.

DAY 52: Sunday, Aug. 7
Take a break from the election season. And go back to when patriotism was truly rowdy. St. John’s Church offers its popular re-enactment of Patrick Henry’s infamous Give Me Liberty or Death speech on Church Hill, 1:15 p.m. $5.

DAY 53: Monday, Aug. 8
Get your head in the game. You can join chess battles at all levels of play at the Richmond Public Library. 6 p.m. Free.

DAY 54: Tuesday, Aug. 9
Fire up your synapses. The Camel is host to a showcase of Richmond electronic sound manipulators with Rec Room: Live Local Beats. 8 p.m. Free.

DAY 55: Wednesday, Aug. 10
Travel back in recent melodic time. There are two ways today: The MY2K Tour, featuring 98 Degrees with O-Town, Dream and Ryan Cabrera, playing Innsbrook After Hours, 6 p.m. And at the National, it’s the resurrection of ’90s grunge rockers Bush.

DAY 56: Thursday, Aug. 11
Multiply your music. Richmond gallery owner, musician and all-round good guy B.J. Kocen celebrates the release of his double album, “Searching for Signal / Old Lake.” 8 p.m.

The 11th Filipino Festival is Aug. 12.
  • The 11th Filipino Festival is Aug. 12.

DAY 57: Friday, Aug. 12
Expand your cultural boundaries. The 11th Filipino Festival takes over Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church for two days of food, entertainment, shopping and activities. Free.

DAY 58: Saturday, Aug. 13
Jazz it up. The Richmond Jazz Festival is underway (Aug. 11-14), featuring the Roots, Herbie Hancock and Morris Day among many artists.

DAY 59: Sunday, Aug. 14
Keep your seeds to yourself. A summer tradition, the Carytown Watermelon Festival has everything you need to spend a day eating, drinking, listening, exploring and shopping — and yes, eating watermelon. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

DAY 60: Monday, Aug. 15
Keep a poker face. If you’ve been practicing, this may be the time to test your skills. Baja Bean Co. is host to a Texas Hold’em poker tournament every Monday, 6 and 8 p.m. Free.

DAY 61: Tuesday, Aug. 16
Rock out. The National hosts the modern rock offerings of O.A.R. 8 p.m.

DAY 62: Junior Brown at the Tin Pan.
  • DAY 62: Junior Brown at the Tin Pan.

DAY 62: Wednesday, Aug. 17
Have dinner with your show. Consummate showman Junior Brown shreds his Roy Clark-meets-Devo six-string at the Tin Pan. 8 p.m.

DAY 63: Thursday, Aug. 18
Power down and have a pint. The local solo acoustic music showcase unfolds at Garden Grove. 7 p.m. Free.

DAY 64: Friday, Aug. 19
Listen while you shop. It’s the last night of the Short Pump Town Center Summer Concert Series (also June 14 with Charlie Puth; July 22 with the Willis Family). Tonight’s artist hadn’t been announced at press time, but it’s bound to be solid. Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant is on hand with wine tastings, to benefit the Rotary Club of Innsbrook. The concert is free.

DAY 65: Saturday, Aug. 20
Add some sizzle to your summer. The Latin Jazz and Salsa Festival at Dogwood Dell — organized by WCLM-AM 1450 radio show host Luis Hidalgo — features performances by Luisito Rosario, Melina “La Muñeca de La Salsa,” Izis “La Enfermera de La Salsa,” Frankely Fernandez, Allen Hidalgo, Edwin Zoa’s Zabor Dance group, Orquesta Curare and DJ Eddy Mayorga. 3-8 p.m. Free.

DAY 66: Gwar-B-Q runs Aug. 19-21.
  • DAY 66: Gwar-B-Q runs Aug. 19-21.

DAY 66: Sunday, Aug. 21
On the third day, rest. The seventh annual Gwar-B-Q (Aug. 19-21) started Friday at the National and moved to Hadad’s Lake on Saturday with a musical lineup including Gwar. And on Sunday, there’s the Morning After Chill, a showcase at GwarBar for Richmond bands from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Featuring what’s being billed as a Brutal Brunch from Chef BälSäc.

DAY 67: Monday, Aug. 22
Don’t bag your lunch. RVA Sandwich Week kicks off today, with $5 deals on specialty sandwiches by a variety of participating Richmond restaurants.

Five Days of Outdoor Exploration

DAY 68: Tuesday, Aug. 23
Explore the James River with a rafting guide.

DAY 69: Wednesday, Aug. 24
Try your hand at the Mortar the Merrier, Bolts from Heaven and Proctologist rock-climbing routes, among others, under the Manchester Bridge. You may need professional guidance on this, but you can get started at

DAY 70: Thursday, Aug. 25
Kayak to a post-Fall Line island downtown and set up shop for the day. Find trip-planning guides at

DAY 71: A new kind of yoga from Riverside Outfitters. - RIVERSIDE OUTFITTERS
  • Riverside Outfitters
  • DAY 71: A new kind of yoga from Riverside Outfitters.

DAY 71: Friday, Aug. 26
Take a class in yoga on the water.

DAY 72: Saturday, Aug. 27
Play a round of disc golf at Gillies Creek Park, 4425 Williamsburg Ave., then head across the way to Stone Brewing, 4300 Williamsburg Ave.

DAY 73: Sunday, Aug. 28
Be chauffeured to your next glass. The Richmond brewery bus tours take you to three local breweries, include a tour of one, flights at all and snacks along the way.

DAY 74: Monday, Aug. 29
Share a scare. It’s movie night at Fallout in Shockoe Bottom, where they’re showing a double feature of horror movies and cult classics. Take a friend — it’s free.

DAY 75: Tuesday, Aug. 30
Get medieval. The Society for Creative Anachronism, Fighter Practice and Arts and Sciences Night is happening at Battery Park Christian Church, 4201 Brook Road. 7 p.m. Check out the scene of medieval armored combat, fencing, dance and more.

DAY 76: Wednesday, Aug. 31
Escape — if you can. Take a group or join one there, but bring a sharp mind. Because Richmond’s first escape room will require lots of clever riddle-solving and keen observations before you’ll be able to get out. OK, they may give you some hints along the way. But that’s for wimps.

DAY 77: Thursday, Sept. 1
Play pickleball. A few years ago, Linda Scott and her husband, Dave, were roaming the country looking for potential retirement spots. They were curious that Florida center had 160 courts of pickleball, a fast-growing racquet sport favored by middle-aged people and retirees but attracting younger people. The game has features of tennis, badminton and ping pong — “It’s sort of like playing ping pong while standing on a table,” Scott says. The couple convinced Chesterfield County to start pickleball at Rockwood Park, and there are now more than 2,000 players throughout the area.

DAY 78: First Fridays Art Walk.
  • DAY 78: First Fridays Art Walk.

DAY 78: Friday, Sept. 2
Take a mind-expanding stroll. First Fridays Art Walk runs 5-9 p.m. downtown. Adams and Broad streets, 5-9 p.m.

DAY 79: Saturday, Sept. 3
Have a picnic with some bluegrass. The Blue Bee Cider Summer Concert Series wraps up tonight with Scattered, Smothered, and Covered. The outdoor concerts run 3-6 p.m. at the Manchester site.

DAY 80: Sunday, Sept. 4
Root for the home team. It’s the next to last day for the Richmond Flying Squirrels, playing Altoona and featuring In Your Face Fireworks and Breakfast for Dinner promotions. Gates open at 5 p.m.

DAY 80: The Richmond Flying Squirrels start to wrap up their season.
  • DAY 80: The Richmond Flying Squirrels start to wrap up their season.


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