The best party of the year is happening now. The 12-day Ohio State Fair fair exhibits much of the best Ohio has to offer: youngsters with livestock, vegetable carvers, butter sculptures, rides and probably a few places to eat unhealthy - but tasty - food. Music acts this weekend include the Ohio State University Marching Band paired with the Columbus Symphony; Lady Antebellum; Dr. John; Bachman & Turner; Blue Oyster Cult; Foghat; Michael Buble; and Scotty McCreery. A Serbian festival offers something different, as do events where you wade in creeks. Here are the best bets for the weekend.
The best party of the year is happening now. The 12-day Ohio State Fair fair exhibits much of the best Ohio has to offer: youngsters with livestock, vegetable carvers, butter sculptures, rides and probably a few places to eat unhealthy - but tasty - food. Music acts this weekend include the Ohio State University Marching Band paired with the Columbus Symphony; Lady Antebellum; Dr. John; Bachman & Turner; Blue Oyster Cult; Foghat; Michael Buble; and Scotty McCreery. A Serbian festival offers something different, as do events where you wade in creeks.
Here are the best bets for the weekend.
Our state fair
The best party of the year is happening now. The 12-day Ohio State Fair exhibits much of the best Ohio has to offer — youngsters showing livestock they’ve raised, beekeepers, the youth band and choir. And stuff that’s quirky: artistic vegetable carvers, butter sculptures, camel rides, pig races and a caloric blitzkrieg of any food that can be stuck on a stick or fried — preferably both. The Ohio State Fair will continue through Aug. 3 at the Ohio Expo Center, I-71 and E. 17th Avenue. Gate hours: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.; until 8 p.m. Aug. 3. Admission: $10, or $8 for ages 5 to 12 or 60 and older, or free for age 4 or younger; $6 tickets available at Kroger stores through Aug. 3. Rides: $1 to $3, or $23 for all-day ride wristbands. Parking: $5. www.ohiostatefair.com
Check out the videos, stories and photos from the Ohio State Fair
Keep track of the musical acts
The Ohio State University Marching Band and the Columbus Symphony will take turns performing, in a concert of both classical masterworks and game-day favorites. Among the works to be performed by the groups together are The Stars and Stripes Forever and selections from The Firebird. Location: Columbus Commons. Showtime: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets: $23, or $25 at the gate; $8 for children age 3 to 14; free for children younger than 2. Contact: 614-228-8600, www.picnicwiththepops.com, www.ticketmaster.com
Up the creek
For the young and young at heart, creeking programs are taking place all weekend. You can learn about — and in some cases, touch — crawfish, water scorpions, caddisflies and water boatmen. Although small fish sometimes are caught, crawfish tend to be the stars of the show.
Preschoolers: Creek Adventures - Battelle Darby Creek Ranger Station. Times: 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Friday
Fish Printing and Creeking - Battelle Darby Creek Nature Center. Details: Bring a blank white T-shirt for printing using rubber fish and fabric paint. Time: 2 p.m. Saturday
River Exploration - Highbanks Big Meadows Picnic Area. Time: 11:30 a.m. Sunday
Family Wading - Prairie Oaks Sycamore Plains Trail. Time: 2 p.m. Sunday
Ditsy dames and goofy guys overcome last-minute obstacles to put on a show in Otterbein Summer Theatre production of Dames at Sea, a musical spoof of 1930s movie musicals. Details: 614-823-1109, www.otterbein.edu/drama
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The country-pop trio Lady Antebellum, whose 2009 chart-topping Need You Now crossover ballad spawned a perfect soundtrack for those teary, tipsy nights, is hotter than ever. You can catch them at the Ohio State Fair. Major concerts will take place in the Celeste Center at the Ohio Expo Center, I-71 and E. 17th Avenue. Call 614-644-3247 or 1-888-646-3976, or visit www.ohiostatefair.com. 7 p.m. Friday; $45.
North Market has been the site of plenty of big bites, but nothing like what will be shown at its Downtown Drive-In on Friday. Jaws, the 1975 shark-infested thriller that had people staying afraid to enter the water, will be shown in the parking lot of the market, 59 Spruce St. Admission will be $18 a car (so pack the Buick full), or free to non-motorists such as pedestrians and bicyclists. The movie starts at dusk, with parking beginning at 7:45 p.m. Call 614-463-9664 or visit www.northmarket.com
What child doesn’t like pretending to be a firefighter or police officer? Here’s a chance to climb into various vehicles — including construction equipment. Location: Westerville Sports Complex. Time: 10 a.m. to noon Friday. Admission: free. Contact: 614-901-6500, www.westerville.org
The Doctor is in
Legendary New Orleans musician Dr. John (aka Malcolm John Rebennack Jr.) will conduct office hours with his new band, the Night Trippers, on Friday in Park Street Saloon. Details: 614-220-9151, www.woodlandsproductions.com
In its inaugural show, the New Vision Dance Company will perform “Fresh Cut,” a program of eight dances — including a dance choreographed specifically for the Otterbein alums by artistic director Melissa Gould. The company, which set up shop in Columbus last year, is tailored to dancers with day jobs. Garden Theater, 1187 N. High St. Contact: www.nvdcohio.com Showtime: 8 p.m. Friday (7-25); 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday (7-26). Tickets: $15.
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Oldies but goodies
Bachman & Turner, Blue Oyster Cult, Foghat, at the Ohio State Fair, 7 p.m. Saturday, $28. Yes, it’s fine to make a “takin’ care of business” or “more cowbell!” pun. The throwback rockers aren’t likely to tread new turf. Major Ohio State Fair concerts will take place in the Celeste Center at the Ohio Expo Center, I-71 and E. 17th Avenue. Call 614-644-3247 or 1-888-646-3976, or visit www.ohiostatefair.com
The smell of roasted lamb and other Serbian delicacies will be floating through the air of the Serbian Festival, which will offer live folk music (wait for the tamburitza solo) and traditional food and drink at noon to 10 p.m. Saturday at St. Stevan of Dechani Serbian Orthodox Church, 1840 N. Cassidy Ave. Admission costs $4, or free for children 12 and younger. Call 614-348-1475 or visit www.ststevanofdechani.org
Let’s Move, Columbus!
In recognition of National Dance Day, dancers 8 and older can participate in a cacophony of classes that encompass everything from ballet to Broadway. The dancing will get underway with a class at the Topiary Park before moving indoors to BalletMet. Contact: 614-229-4860, www.balletmet.org. Showtime: 10 a.m. Saturday. Admission: free .
A ladies’ night of reliable standards and modern pop balladry are on tap for the Canadian crooner, who’s touring to promote the 2013 album To Be Loved — which featured 10 covers of classic romance tunes.
Showtime: 8 p.m. Saturday, Value City Arena. Contact: 1-800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com. Tickets: $54.50 to $99.50.
Food-truck chefs Catie Randazzo (Challah!) and Matthew Heaggans (Swoop!) will have one hour to prepare two dishes using a mystery ingredient at the first Columbus Knife Fight. Spectators can enjoy food-truck fare and Seventh Son brews at 10 p.m. Saturday at ECDI Food Fort, 737 Parkwood Ave.; admission: $5. Details: www.facebook.com
Miles for Smiles 5K
The inaugural 5-kilometer run/walk will raise money for Free to Smile, an organization that provides dental and surgical services to children throughout the world. The event is hosted by North Orange Family Dentistry. Time: 8 a.m. Saturday, with registration beginning at 7. Location: Adventure Park, 60 Village Park Dr., Powell. Contact: www.premierraces.org Registration: $30, or $35 day of race.
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All-Ohio State Fair Band & Youth Choir will perform at the Ohio State Fair, 1 p.m., Sunday for free. See the hard work pay off for the young musicians — who live in dormitories at the fair and perform multiple times each day on the grounds.Keep track of the musical acts
And more fair music
Scotty McCreery takes the stage at the Ohio State Fair, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, $20. Could a tinier man have a deeper baritone? Who’s to say, but the 2011 American Idol winner will certainly balance that booming voice with boyish charm. Keep track of the musical acts
Enjoy a bit of old Germany when Columbus Maennerchor and Damenchor perform selections from the 1924 operetta The Student Prince by Sigmund Romberg. Tenor Otoniel Gonzaga will perform with the choruses, which will also sing works by Charles Gounod and Franz Schubert. Showtime is 4 p.m. Sunday at Trinity Lutheran Church, 404 S. 3rd St. Admission is $10, or $5 for students and free for age 12 and younger and will benefit the “German Heritage Haus” of the Maennerchor. Cal 614-332-7170 or visit www.maennerchor.com
The Columbus Polo Club will conduct its weekly matches every Sunday afternoon through September on the Great Lawn at Bryn Du Mansion in Granville. Events are free; take a lawn chair or a blanket for seating while catching the action. Details: www.bryndu.com
After a 2007 split, the alternative Los Angeles hip-hop group settled its differences for a 2013 showing at the Coachella festival. This summer, naturally, they’re going full throttle with a reunion tour. Catch them at Lifestyle Communities Pavilion. Contact: 614-461-5483, www.promowestlive.com Doors open: 6 p.m. Sunday. Tickets: $25.
In the midst of its namesake event, the All-Ohio State Fair Band will be sounding off in a different venue on Sunday at the Whetstone Park of Roses, where it will perform a concert of patriotic, popular and traditional fare. Details: www.aosfb.com