Wednesday, June 15
Kick your midweek blues with some island jams and happy hour drink prices during REGGAE WEDNESDAYS at Fountain Square. Wind down with a cold beverage and listen to the DJ until the laid-back reggae crews take to the stage for the ultimate hump day pick-me-up. Free. 7-10 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 31. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Enjoy beautiful weather, flowing drinks and lots and lots of cover songs at Q102-FM & BUD SELECT PARTY ON THE RIVER. Tonight The Websters play. 5:30-10 p.m. Free. Yeatman’s Cove, 805 Pete Rose Way, Downtown, 513-699-5102.
Thursday, June 16
Pop your Country concert cherry and see how to really get down Southern style with BRAD PAISLEY FEATURING BLAKE SHELTON AND JERROD NIEMANN. Whether you’re on the lawn or in the pavilion, you’ll get drunk with pretty girls in cutoff shorts and hot guys in cowboy hats. $30-$75. Doors open at 4 p.m. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellog Ave., Anderson, www.riverbend.org.
Too hot for the outdoors? Cool off as you check out THE ART OF ALAN GRIZZELL: OVER-THE-RHINE. This exhibit captures the unusual beauty of neighborhoods in transition. His work sheds light on often ignored corners of the city as they appear today, capturing the unique atmosphere of decay on the cusp of renewal. $2. Through June 30. The Betts House, 416 Clark St., Over-the-Rhine, www.bettshouse.org.
Always wanted to see one of the Bard’s classic plays, but never can decide? Cincinnati Shakespeare Company makes it easy for you with THE COMPLETE WORKS OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (ABRIDGED). Follow along as actors careen wildly through all the comedies, histories and tragedies using a trunk full of props, wigs and ridiculous costumes. $22-$32. Through June 26. 719 Race St., Downtown, 513-381-BARD, www.cincyshakes.com.
Friday, June 17
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Maps and Atlases, Soapland and Wild Talents peform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Enjoy the region’s favorite meat product at MainStrasse’s ORIGINAL GOETTAFEST. There will be goetta in any form your mind can imagine, goetta burgers, goetta balls, goetta chili, goetta chili and pretty much anything else you can put goetta in front of that won’t make you vomit if you dare to try it. Hot food, cold drinks, live music and fun for everyone in the family. Free. 5-11:30 p.m. June 17, noon-11:30 p.m. June 18, noon-9 p.m. June 19. Mainstrasse Village, Covington, www.mainstrasse.org.
Fountain Square is hosting another CONEY EATING CONEST just to prove how much we love it. Twelve contestants will get three minutes to devour as many conies as possible before their competitors, or their stomachs, beat them. Come join in the vulture-like madness, or just watch. Free. Noon-1 p.m. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Saturday, June 18
The annual JUNETEENTH FESTIVAL celebrates the end of slavery with music on two stages and almost two dozen Gospel, Blues, R&B and Pop bands. A children’s area features games, crafts and a petting zoo. There will be food, exhibits and much more. Free. Noon-9 p.m. Eden Park, Eden Park Drive, www.juneteenthcincinnati.org.
Cincinnati’s nationally ranked flat track roller derby team, CINCINNATI ROLLERGIRLS, take on the Detroit Derby Girls. Bad ass chicks with names like “Ouchocinco,” mouthpieces and roller skates sound like trouble, so count us in. $10-$17. 7-10 p.m. Cincinnati Gardens, 2250 Seymour Ave., Norwood, www.cincinnatirollergirls.com.
Watch the CINCINNATI REDS battle it out against the Blue Jays at Great American Ballpark for the “W” in the second game of this series. Catch a fly ball and cheer as Arroyo strikes ‘em out. $5-$235. 7:10 p.m. 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Downtown, www.cincinnatireds.com.
Saturday nights on Fountain Square will be a destination for poets, singers, rappers and writers. Come down to enjoy SATURDAY SLAM as local, regional and national artists showcase their talents. Artists such as Chip the Ripper, Machine Gun Kelly, Exodus, Zoo Krew and many, many more will be here in the Queen City live. Free. 7 p.m. Saturdays through Aug. 27. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Sunday, June 19
Enjoy a day out with the kids or your main squeeze and appreciate the beauty nature has to offer us during the BUTTERFLIES OF BRAZIL at the Krohn Conservatory. Discover the sight, smell, and soul of Brazil through the luscious fauna and vibrant butterflies. $4-$6. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily through June 26. 950 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams, 513-421-5707, www.butterflyshow.com.
Fountain Square hosts their popular, weekly film night all summer long with TOYOTA’S MOVIE NIGHT. This Sunday check out Despicable Me, a tribute for Father’s Day. Bring your own blankets, chairs and pillows then kick back and relax. Adult beverages, soft drinks and movie snacks are available for purchase. Free. 7-9 p.m. Sundays through Aug. 28. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/movies.
Monday, June 20
Mondays are the start of a long week, be lazy and enjoy the sounds of uplifting Jazz music at the FOUNTAIN SQUARE LOUNGE. Small Jazz combo Chris Comer Trio and a special guest will be performing live on Fountain Square, this week with Sandy Suskind. Don’t worry about the rain — in case weather is inclement, performances will be moved to the Cricket Lounge inside the Cincinnatian Hotel. Free. 7-9 p.m. Mondays through Aug. 29. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Cheer on the Redlegs as they take on the Yankees at Great American Ballpark. After the game, head over to ARNIE’S and show them your ticket stub for free admission. Don’t plan on going to the game tonight? Head over Arnie’s anyway for the official pre- and post-game parties. Enjoying 50 cent wings and $10 buckets while surrounded by HD TVs is a perfect cure to the Monday night blues. Cover charge. 120 E. Third St., Newport, www.arniesonthelevee.com.
Tuesday, June 21
The square saddles-up for SOUTHERN SOUNDS. Even those of us in the city love good ol’ Country, Bluegrass, and Blues music. Get ready for some two-steppin’ and boot scootin’ in the heart of Cincinnati. The Comet Bluegrass Allstars perform this week. 7-9 p.m. Tuesdays through Aug. 30. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Wednesday, June 22
For all of us adrenaline junkies, wakeboarding is one thing that finally gets our blood pumpin’. WAKE NATION allows wake boarders, water skiers, knee skaters or wake skaters, beginners and experts alike, the opportunity to ride without a boat, and all equipment can be rented on sight. Even if you aren’t into water sports, there’s a huge observation deck to lounge on, catch some rays, buy a cold drink and maybe get splashed a couple times. $35-$100. Joyce Park, 201 Joe Nuxhall Way, Fairfield, www.wakenation.com.
Getting people drunk after work on Wednesdays for more than 30 years, PARTY IN THE PARK presents a mix of live music, new friends and sweet happy hour deals. This week, the party starts early, 4-10:30 p.m. featuring Cover Model. Free. Yeatman’s Cove at Sawyer Point, Downtown, www.party-in-the-park.com.
Thursday, June 23
Ready to start your weekend early? Stop by the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden for WILD ABOUT WINE to taste different wines, hear live music and experience up-close animal encounters. Guests also receive light appetizers and a souvenir wine glass. Even if you don’t drink, it’s a nice way to begin the evening with family and friends. $20-$35. 3400 Vine St., Avondale, www.cincinnatizoo.org.
Kick off the 10th annual midwest PADDLEFEST. We live on the beautiful Ohio River, so why not celebrate this forgotten treasure right in our own backyard? Bring the whole family to enjoy music, paddling, food, activities and lots of fun for everyone. Registration fee. 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. June 23, 10 a.m.-midnight June 24, 7:30 a.m.-3 p.m. June 25. Coney Island, 6201 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.ohioriverway.org.
Friday, June 24
Fire up those sewing needles, THE ORIGINAL CREATIVE FESTIVAL is back featuring sewing, knitting, needle art and crafts, along with a few guest speakers and thousands of dollars worth of door prizes to be given away. $5-$12, children under 16 free. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 23-25 Sharonville Convention Center, 11355 Chester Road, Sharonville, 800-473-9464.
Get ready for a big, fat PANEGYRI GREEK FESTIVAL. Join tons of others in grubbin’ on some homemade baklava, gyros and dolmas. Enjoy folk dance, live music, rides for the kids and Greek jewelry and paintings for sale. $2. 5-11 p.m. June 24, 3-11 p.m. June 25, 1-8 p.m. June 26. Holy Trinity-St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, 7000 Winton Road, Finneytown, www.holytrinity.oh.goarch.org/92.html.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Viva Voce, Prussia and The Kickaways will be performing. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, June 25
Start the day off at the Contemporary Arts Center during FAMILY SATURDAYS. The fourth Saturday of each month an artist joins families in creating art projects together. This weekend brothers Ben, Will and Nick Carcieri will be showing you how to create an installation from popular stretchy bracelets and other ways to create art with them. $5-$8. 1-4 p.m. 44 East Sixth St., Downtown, www.contemporaryartscenter.org.
Pop into City Cellars for a peek at show cars young and old at WINE & WHEELS, the wine shop’s 5th annual downtown car show. The event will feature live music, a wood-fired cookout, adult beverages and prizes. For those interested in showing a car, go to www.citycellars.biz to register ahead of time. City Cellars, 980 Race St., Downtown, 513-621-WINE.
ROEBLINGFEST is a celebration of art, architecture, history and engineering along the Covington riverbanks. This year the Covington Cincinnati Suspension Bridge Committee and the Roebling Point Business Association have joined together to expand RoeblingFest for a day of games, food, beer, entertainment and fireworks. The festival events include a petting zoo, tricycle and Segway races for adults, a moon-bounce, a corn-hole tourney, a dunking booth, face painting and a farmers’ market. Free. 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Park Place between Scott and Greenup streets, Covington, www.roeblingbridge.org.
Sunday, June 26
Join one of the most iconic rock bands in the U.S. as MTLEY CRE AND POISON hit the stage with NEW YORK DOLLS. Get your hangover medicine ready and your air-guitar tuned, it’s going to be a wild night. $27.50-$125. 5:30-11 p.m. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellog Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
MAINSTRASSE ANTIQUES, ETC. turns Mainstrasse into a vintage streetfair with more than 50 antique dealers selling quality pieces and collectibles. Rain or shine. Free. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Mainstrasse Village, Covington, 859-491-0458.
Monday, June 27
Although we don’t support drinking followed by machinery operation, summer isn’t really complete without a little cabrewing. The LITTLE MIAMI CANOE RENTAL opens daily at 8 a.m. to provide you with an aluminum canoe, life vests and paddles. Rates vary on group size and ages. Little Miami Canoe Rental, 219 Mill St., Morrow, 513-899-3616.
The fellas who brought you the Newport Gangster Tour have exposed more of the Cincinnati underground in their QUEEN CITY UNDERGROUND: BREWERIES, BOSSES AND BURIALS WALKING TOUR. Enjoy a stroll through the Gateway District, home to America’s largest intact set of historical landmarks. Hear tales of Cincinnati’s “Murder College,” and learn why Music Hall is one of the most haunted places in the US. $10-$20. Tours available Monday, Thursday, Saturday-Sunday. Twelfth and Vine streets, Over-the-Rhine, 859-951-8560, www.queencityunderground.com.
Tuesday, June 28
Boat, hunt, fish, swim, lay out, camp, picnic, hike and do anything else you can possibly think of in between. EAST FORK LAKE is a Florida-like getaway without the expense. Bring your friends, family and favorite furry animals down for a day on the lake. 3294 Elklick Road, Bethel, 513-734-4323.
Wednesday, June 29
Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati knows everyone loves Christmas in July. That’s why they’re presenting WINTER WONDERETTES, a sequel to ETC’s biggest box office hit starring the original four Marvelous Wonderettes
Enjoy beautiful weather, flowing drinks and lots and lots of cover songs at Q102-FM & BUD SELECT PARTY ON THE RIVER. Naked Karate Girls play tonight. 5:30-10 p.m. Free. Yeatman’s Cove, 805 Pete Rose Way, Downtown, 513-699-5102.
Thursday, June 30
The Cincinnati Opera’s 2011 summer festival has got to be one of the most important must-see events during the summer months. Four fully mounted works in the span of six weeks, with seriously excellent vocal and podium talent. This week A FLOWERING TREE will be performed. $48-$165. 7:30 p.m. June 30 and July 2. Music Hall, 1241 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-241-2742, www.cincinnatiopera.org
Enjoy “Summertime” with KENNY CHESNEY, UNCLE KRACKER and BILLY CURRINGTON. A country combo you can’t miss. 7 p.m. $40-$80. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellog Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Friday, July 1
Get your motor runnin’! It’s the 8th annual NEWPORT MOTORCYCLE RALLY, where awards are given to the best-looking bikes. Festival also includes food, fireworks, live music and games. Free. 5 p.m.-midnight July 1, noon-midnight July 2-3, noon-10 p.m. July 4. Newport Festival Park, Newport, 859-292-3686, www.newportmotorcyclerally.com.
Dayton’s CITYFOLK FESTIVAL is a three-day multi-cultural celebration featuring the best in traditional and ethnic music, dance and arts from across the United States and around the world. Free. 6-11 p.m. July 1, 1-11 p.m. July 2, 1-10:30 p.m. July 3. RiverScape MetroPark, Dayton, www.cityfolk.org.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Pomegranates, The Harlequins and Okay Lindon perform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, July 2
COVINGTON FARMERS MARKET is a relaxing way to start the day off with lettuce, zucchini, herbs, corn, blackberries, salsas, jams, jellies and other fresh fruit and veggies. 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays through Oct. 29. Goebel Park, MainStrasse Village, www.facebook.com/covingtonfarmersmarket.
Learn about the Newport underground with the NEWPORT GANGSTER TOUR, a historical walking tour. Walk the streets where gangsters made their millions, gamblers lost their lives and ladies of the night earned their living. $15. 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 5 p.m. Saturdays. 18 E. Fifth St., Newport, www.newportgangsters.com.
Sunday, July 3
Fireworks aren’t the only things that can light up the sky. Head to Coney Island for the 12th annual LAROSA’S BALLOON GLOW, where 20 hot air balloons of every color will be illuminated and “glowing” for all to see. The event will also feature live music, family entertainment, Coney’s classic rides and a fireworks display by Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks. Free. 5-11 p.m. Coney Island, 6201 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.coneyislandpark.com.
Monday, July 4
The Northside ROCK ‘N ROLL CARNIVAL is kickin’ all weekend long, featuring music, fire breathers, drag shows and a carnival side show featuring sword swallowers and a bed of nails. Begin celebrating America’s birthday at the NORTHSIDE FOURTH OF JULY PARADE. The parade stretches a mile long with 600-800 participants and more than 4,000 attendees. Following the parade will be the Independence Day Festival where the celebration will continue. Free. 6 p.m.-1 a.m. July 1-3, noon-5 p.m. July 4. Northern boundary of Northside, 4101 Hamilton Ave. www.northsiderocks.com.
Join CINCINNATI POPS ORCHESTRA: RED, WHITE, AND BOOM to celebrate Independence day. Incoming Pops conductor JMR leads the the Pops in some of our favorite American songs and anthems. Come early for free Coney Island admission and stay late for Rozzi’s famous fireworks display. $13-$20. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellog Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Tuesday, July 5
Want a chance to win up to $40 doing what you love? Tuesday night is WRITERS NIGHT at MOTR Pub. All creative performers are welcome such as songwriters, poets, storytellers, spoken word, dancers, comedians and anything else. 8:45 p.m.-12:45 a.m. 1345 Main St., Over-the-Rhine. www.motrpub.com.
Cool down this summer with a creamy treat next to man’s — or woman’s — best friend during DOG’S NIGHT OUT at participating Graeter’s locations. Mingle with other dog lovers, buy yourself a tangy watermelon sorbet or stick with a classic like an original vanilla ice-cream, while your dog enjoys complimentary Frosty Paws. Participating locations include Cherry Grove, Clifton, Deerfield, Finneytown, Hyde Park, Mariemont, Northgate, Springdale, West Chester and Western Hills. 6-9 p.m. First Tuesdays through Sept. 6.
Wednesday, July 6
When was the last time you went bowling? WEDNESDAY HAVOC is the perfect place to get some friends together, throw some gutter balls, take advantage of drink specials and enjoy something you haven’t done in forever. $5. All you can bowl from 9:30 p.m.-midnight. Northwest Lanes, 1763 Happy Valley Drive, Fairfield, 513-829-4444.
Offering after work fun on Wednesdays for more than 30 years, PARTY IN THE PARK presents a mix of live music, new friends and sweet happy hour deals. This week features music from Lt. Dan’s New Legs. Free. Yeatman’s Cove at Sawyer Point, Downtown, www.party-in-the-park.com.
Thursday, July 7
The Showboat Majestic opens 42ND STREET, a musical based on the novel by Bradford Ropes. Where else can you see a theater production on a classic boat? $16-$17. July 6-24. Showboat Majestic, 435 E. Mehring Way, Downtown, 513-241-6550.
Enjoy some of Rock music’s most legendary performers, DEF LEPPARD and HEART. Selling more than 65 million albums, Def Leppard has been named one of the greatest artists of all time. Collaborating with Heart, it is sure to be one hell of a concert. Prepare to headbang and rock out all night. $29-$125. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellog Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Friday, July 8
The 95th annual ST. RITA FEST, one of the Tristate’s largest summer festivals, kicks off with more than 100 booths and games for people of all ages. Try the famous turtle soup — a secret recipe only the family knows, join the Texas Hold ’Em tournament on Sunday, and enjoy all of the rides. $2. 7 p.m.-midnight July 8, 4 p.m.-midnight July 9, 1-10 p.m. July 10. St. Rita School for the Deaf, 1720 Glendale Milford Road, Evendale, 513-772-7005.
Join other locals and tourists for a reason to laugh when funnyman Chris Tucker hits the stage at the Aronoff for the CHRIS TUCKER LIVE TOUR. He has been deemed one of the funniest comics in the industry and has performed in movies such as Friday, Rush Hour and Dead Presidents. $36-$66. Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut St., Downtown, www.cincinnatiarts.org.
They say the best things in life are free. That includes FREE FRIDAYS at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Saunter through the Cincinnati History Museum, Duke Energy Children’s Museum and the Museum of Natural History & Science (special exhibits, OMNIMAX and parking are extra). Ages 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Free. 4-8 p.m. Cincinnati Museum Center, 1301 Western Ave, West End, www.cincymuseum.org.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Big Freedia, The Cincy Brass and Shadowraptr perform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, July 9
Taking note from urban neighborhoods across the country, THE CITY FLEA has several goals in mind. It’s a place for the city’s creative minds and skilled hands to share what they are working on or collecting and a venue for social interaction amongst the already burgeoning local community of entrepreneurs, artists and enthusiasts. Peruse goods and goodies from local vendors like Chicken Lays an Egg, Uniquely Upcycled, Turophilia Quesadillas, Coffee Emporium and much more. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. The City Flea, Central Parkway and Vine Street at the Cincinnatus Mural, Over-the-Rhine, www.thecityflea.com.
Learn about Cincinnati and some of its historical secrets at PROHIBITION RESISTANCE: THE LAGER TOUR. Participants see historic pre-Prohibition breweries like the original Christian Moerlein complex, Clyffside Brewery, and — for the first time since 2006 — enter deep underground lagering cellars of Jackson Brewery in the Clifton hillside. $15. Findlay Market’s Over-the-Rhine Biergarten, 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine, www.brewerytours.com.
Sunday, July 10
SECOND SUNDAY ON MAIN is an open-air festival with musicians, craftspeople, food and drink celebrating the health of Over-the-Rhine and the Gateway Quarter. This month’s theme is “Dog Days of Summer” featuring plenty of music, shopping, galleries and vendors. Free. Noon-5 p.m. Main and Vine streets, Over-the-Rhine, secondsundayonmain.org.
Get decked out in rainbows and show your support for equality during CINCINNATI PRIDE 2011. Events include a downtown parade, street festival and events all over the Tri-state. July 8-10. www.cincyglbt.com.
Relax and cool off with a day of family-friendly fun at THE BEACH WATERPARK, the largest in Ohio (2.5 million gallons over more than 35 acres). With real sand, a wave pool and palm trees, who needs to trek to the coast to go to a beach? Enjoy live Reggae music on Sundays from 2-5 p.m. at the Miller Lite Reggae Festival. $10.50-$27.99. The Beach Waterpark, 2590 Waterpark Drive, Mason, 513-398-SWIM.
Monday, July 11
Argh! Visit SCALLYWAG TAG for laser tagging, putt-putting, arcade games or flipping in the giant inflatables. Whether you’re young or old, tall or short, everyone has a chance to be the champion at something here. $7-$20. 5055 Glencrossing Way, Price Hill, 513-922-4999.
Carl Solway Gallery, where locals go to get their Modern Art fix, presents CARL FUDGE AND JOHN COPLANS. The exhibit features paintings and prints by Fudge and photographs by Coplans. Gallery Hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, noon-5 p.m. Saturday. Through Aug. 13. 424 Findlay St., Over-the-Rhine. www.solwaygallery.com.
Tuesday, July 12
More than 250 pianists from around the world have been selected to show in the WORLD PIANO COMPETITION, one of the most prestigious in the world. Performances open to the public. Through July 17. Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut St., Downtown, 513-421-5342, www.cincinnatiwpc.org.
Wednesday, July 13
Nothing says summer like a walk down memory lane. Relive your freshman year mixer as GOO GOO DOLLS AND MICHELLE BRANCH take over PNC Pavilion. $33-$63. 5:30 p.m. PNC Pavilion, 6295 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.pncpavilion.com.
Thursday, July 14
Go underwater without getting wet at the NEWPORT AQUARIUM. Explore 70 exhibits and 14 galleries, including five seamless acrylic tunnels totaling more than 200 feet in length, featuring an amazing variety of aquatic life from around the world. $20; $13 children. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. daily. Newport on the Levee, Newport, www.newportaquarium.com.
Ease the hectic, almost-weekend jitters with refreshing acoustic performances during lunch on ACOUSTIC THURSDAY. Grab a burrito, a cold drink and sit down to groups performing Folk, Celtic, Blues, singer-songwriter, Roots or Americana. The series showcases some of the best local musicians, including a number of Cincinnati Entertainment Award winners. Free. 11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Fountain Square, Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Friday, July 15
Lake Isabella is the place to be for FRIDAY NIGHT GRILL OUTS. Pick out a specialty or a grill-out dinner featuring your choice of a steak, BBQ chicken breast or a shrimp kabob. There will also be a la carte choices like burgers and dogs. Every night will feature live music starting at 6 p.m. $3.25-$9.25. 5-8 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 3. Lake Isabella, 10174 Loveland-Madeira Road, Symmes Twp., 513-521-PARK.
The 19th annual FESTIVAL IN SYCAMORE celebrates summer with two days of fun Friday and Saturday. There will be food, drinks and entertainment for everyone. For just $5 you can ride all the rides you want and check out national acts such as Ambrosia and Grand Funk Railroad. Free. 6 p.m.-midnight July 16-17. Bechtold Park, 4312 Sycamore Road, Sycamore, 513-791-8447.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Eat Sugar, The Pass and Starfox perform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, July 16
The eighth annual MIDFIRST OHIO CHALLENGE is a full festival featuring sanctioned hot air balloon competition events. Enjoy a professional skydiving team, the best of regional musical entertainment, classic car show, arts and crafts vendors, a wide variety of festival foods, tethered hot air balloon rides, helicopter rides and much more. $3-$8. 4-10 p.m. July 15, 6-9 a.m and 4-10 p.m. July 16, 6-9 a.m. July 17. Smith Park, Middletown Regional Airport, Middletown, www.ohiochallenge.com.
Explore ARTWORLD at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Families participate in hands-on activities for all ages, interests and learning styles. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Cincinnati Art Museum, 953 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams, 513-721-2787.
Rock out ‘90s style with two of the greatest punk bands from the era. 311 and SUBLIME WITH ROME are guaranteed to get everyone jumpin’ with one of the best performances of the summer. $23-$40. 6:30 p.m. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Sunday, July 17
Celebrate the long-standing traditions here in Porkopolis and come down to the QUEEN CITY SAUSAGE FESTIVAL. There will be more than 20 ways to enjoy your sausage, plus live entertainment, a brat eating contest, kids rides, games, a beautiful view and a beer garden. Free. 5-11 p.m. July 15, noon-11 p.m. July 16, noon-9 p.m. July 17. Festival Park Newport, Riverboat Row, Newport, www.queencitysausage.com.
Monday, July 18
More than 150 years old, the WARREN COUNTY FAIR brings guests, talent shows, magic shows, wood carvers, a jungle island zoo, camel rides, a cornhole tournament, karaoke and demolition derbies, as well as farm animals, food vendors and more. July 18-23. Warren County Fairgrounds, 665 N. Broadway, Lebanon, 513-695-1311, www.warrencountyfair.org.
Walk the labyrinth at GRAILVILLE RETREAT CENTER in Loveland. No, it’s not a maze and David Bowie won’t be there — it’s a circular path used for reflection and meditation. Free. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. Grailville, 932 O’Bannonville Road, Loveland, 513-683-2340.
Tuesday, July 19
Stop by The Southgate House to see ROGER CLYNE AND THE PEACEMAKERS perform pure, unadulterated Rock ‘N Roll. With four part harmonies, relentless guitar licks and thought-provoking lyrics it is bound to be a great a time. $15-$18. 7:30 p.m. The Southgate House, 24 East Third St., Newport, www.southgatehouse.com.
Stop at Findlay Market for TUESDAY EVENING TASTINGS. Turn a boring Tuesday evening into a weekly ritualized event. Market Wines in Findlay Market will have a selection of wines to choose from each week along with at least one beer tasting, food from local vendors and personal chefs on sight. Get out of the house and give your taste buds a new treat each week, now through October. $5-$10. Findlay Market, 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine, www.findlaymarket.org.
Wednesday, July 20
Swing by Newport on the Levee at Jefferson Hall for the Big Legendary Wednesdays with the NAKED KARATE GIRLS. These guys aren’t your average cover band. They come equipped with props, costumes and even a stripper pole, but you have to follow their number one rule: “No Dudes On Stage!” 10 p.m. Jefferson Hall, 1 Levee Way #2118, Newport, www.jeffersonhall.com.
Offering after work fun on Wednesdays for more than 30 years, PARTY IN THE PARK presents a mix of live music, new friends and sweet happy hour deals. This week, 4th Day Echo gets the party started. Free. 5:30-10:30 p.m. Yeatman’s Cove at Sawyer Point, Downtown, www.party-in-the-park.com.
Thursday, July 21
Fountain Square can get hot in the summer, but it gets even hotter with SALSA ON THE SQUARE. Bands like Tropicoso, Acapulco and Son del Caribe will be performing and instructors will be teaching basic steps to anyone interested. Cool down with a pop or refreshing adult beverage. Free. 7-10 p.m. Fountain Square, Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Spend a day outdoors with family, friends and BIG BUGS. Thirteen larger-than-life insects constructed of wood and other natural materials created by artist David Rogers and on display in and on the south side of Highfield Discovery Garden. Includes admission to the Highfield Discovery Garden and free parking. Separate from public areas of park. $5-$7. Through Aug. 21. Glenwood Gardens, 10623 Springfield Pike, Woodlawn, www.greatparks.org/bigbugs.
Friday, July 22
RASCAL FLATTS SARA EVANS, EASTON CORBIN and JUSTIN MOORE will be taking over the stage at Riverben for the “Flatts Fest.” The tour will also include an interactive pre-show festival atmosphere and tailgating experience, with activities spread throughout the plaza and parking areas for all fans who want to make a whole afternoon/evening of the show. $34-$113. Doors open at 3 p.m. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week July for Kings, The Prohibitionists and The Western perform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, July 23
World’s premier monster truck series presents MONSTER JAM: RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE featuring five-ton, twelve-foot-high trucks in highspeed racing and highflying, car crushing and freestyle competitions. Party in the Pits starts at 2 p.m., allowing fans to meet their favorite Monster Jam drivers and trucks, take pictures and get autographs. $10-$50. 7 p.m. Paul Brown Stadium, 1 Bengals Drive, Downtown, www.ticketmaster.com.
Witness some extreme stunts at the second-annual BIG ED’S BMX BASH, an all-day event incorporating a BMX contest, motorcycle meet, car show and live music. The BMX dirt jumping contest will feature several professional riders and will be open to amateurs as well. There will be an area designated for anyone interested in showing a motorcycle or custom car, from early hot rods to newly tricked out German rides. July 23 (rainout date July 30). Admission is $5; children under 10 are free. BMX contest practice starts at noon; contest around 2 or 3 p.m. Big Ed’s Bar and Grill, 1726 E. Ohio Pike, Amelia.
Stay cool this summer while watching DIVE IN MOVIES at The Beach Waterpark. Hang out in the Kahuna Beach Wavepool and watch Ironman 2. $15.50 park admission after 4 p.m. 8:30 p.m. showtime. 2590 Waterpark Drive, Mason, www.thebeachwaterpark.com.
Sunday, July 24
The BUTLER COUNTY FAIR features Country music bands, livestock exhibitions, rides, concession sales and classes — including sheep decorating. $6, $1 children. July 24-30. Butler County Fairgrounds, 1715 Fairgrove Ave., Hamilton, www.butlercofair.com.
MAINSTRASSE ANTIQUES, ETC. turns Mainstrasse into a vintage streetfair with more than 50 antique dealers selling quality pieces and collectibles. Rain or shine. Free. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Mainstrasse Village, Covington, 859-491-0458.
Monday, July 25
Take a walk on the mild side at CALIFORNIA WOODS NATURE PRESERVE along Kellogg Avenue. The totally pristine hiking trails accommodate different levels of ability, including the one-mile California Junction Trail, Trillium Valley Trail and Prairie Meadow Trail. A great place to spot flowers, birds and butterflies. Free. Dawn-dusk daily. 5400 Kellogg Ave., California, 513-231-8678.
Watch as the CINCINNATI REDS take on the Mets at Great American Ballpark in the first game of this series. Enjoy hot dogs, cold beers and America’s favorite pastime. $5-$235. 7:10 p.m. Great American Ball park, 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Downtown. www.cincinnatireds.mlb.com
Tuesday, July 26
Step into the eye of the storm at the Cincinnati Museum Center’s OMNIMAX to see Tornado Alley. Narrated by Bill Paxton from Twister. The film follows Sean Casey, star of the Discovery Channel’s Storm Chasers series, on a mission to experience a tornado’s destructive power. $5-$7.50. 11 a.m., 1, 2, 3 and 5 p.m. Cincinnati Museum Center, Omnimax Theater 1301 Western Ave. West End, 513-287-7000. www.cincymuseum.com.
Fountain Square turns into a fresh air market with STRAUSS & TROY MARKET ON THE SQUARE. There will be fresh produce, baked goods, prepared lunches, fresh flowers and handmade items. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesdays through Sept. 27. Fountain Square, corner of Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Wednesday, July 27
THE MAGICAL FLUTE will make its debut in Cincinnati with a modern cast in a classic opera. $26-$165. 7:30 p.m. Music Hall 1241 Elm St., Cincinnati. www.cincinnatiopera.org.
Pick up a steamy romance novel, an enlightening biography or your favorite children’s book at FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY BOOK SALE. There will also be a ton of CDs, DVDs, videos and books on tape all starting at 50 cents. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. 8456 Vine St., Downtown, www.friends.cincinnatilibrary.org.
Thursday, July 28
Sporting the freshest food in town at a fraction of the cost of a grocery store trip, FINDLAY MARKET is history, an outing and value in one spot. Free to roam. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. 100 block of W. Elder St., Over-the-Rhine, www.findlaymarket.org.
Ease the hectic, almost weekend jitters with refreshing acoustic performances during lunch on ACOUSTIC THURSDAY. Grab a burrito, a cold drink and sit down to groups performing Folk, Celtic, Blues, singer-songwriter, Roots or Americana. The series showcases some of the best local musicians, including a number of Cincinnati Entertainment Award winners. Free. 11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Fountain Square, Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com.
Friday, July 29
Originally called the Ohio Valley Jazz Festival when it was first held in 1962, the MACY’S MUSIC FESTIVAL has grown and evolved into a spectacular two-day event on Cincinnati’s riverfront. Starting out as an all-Jazz concert, it has grown into a two-day festival featuring great music from the hottest stars in R&B, Jazz, Soul, and Hip-Hop, as well as up and coming artists. $48-$88. 7:30 p.m. July 29-30. 138 E. Court St., Downtown, www.macysmusicfestival.com.
Join GRACE POTTER AND THE NOCTURNALS at the PNC Pavillion for a night of live music, good friends and a musical goddess. $20-$35. 7:30 p.m. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg Ave., Anderson Twp., www.riverbend.org.
Fountain Square becomes a music lover’s mecca during MIDPOINT INDIE SUMMER every Friday night with performances by local and national Indie acts to preview MPMF. Live music, food and drinks with new performers each week will definitely keep things interesting. This week Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, Tweak Bird and Belle Histoire perform. Free. 7-11 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 2. Fifth and Vine streets, Downtown, www.myfountainsquare.com/indiesummer.
Saturday, July 30
Get your creative juices flowing and enlightened at the CINCINNATI ART MUSEUM. With more than 60,000 pieces spanning 6,000 years even non-art lovers are bound to find something they appreciate here. Visitors can enjoy exhibits, activities and special events in one of Cincinnati’s greatest cultural assets. Free. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. Cincinnati Art Museum, 953 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams, www.cincinnatiartmuseum.org.
Cheer on the CINCINNATI REDS when they play the Giants at Great American Ball Park. During the second game of this series, the first 14,000 fans will receive a mesh Scott Rolen jersey, so be sure to get there early. $5-$235. 7:10 p.m. Great American Ball Park, 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Downtown. www.cincinnatireds.mlb.com
Sunday, July 31
Stop down for live music, games, food, rides, fireworks and more at the GREATER ANDERSON DAYS going on all weekend long. All proceeds go to benefit Anderson Foundation for Parks and Recreation Playground Fund. 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 5-10 p.m. Sunday. Beech Acres Park 6910 Salem Road, Anderson, www.andersonparks.com.