Commentary: After Volbeat and 311, the closing act of three-pronged Edgefest is Canadian rockers Arkells, who sold out back-to-back shows in Town Ballroom last December. Frontman Max Kerman explained why he adores the Queen City in this 2015 interview, and the Smiles and band shots from the December 2016 indicate that the love affair hasn't lost its fire.
Kerman's regular visits have given him an appreciation for Buffalo's progress. "Every time we leave Hamilton to tour, we’ll come back to find new coffee shops and restaurants because there’s a lot going on in the city," the lead singer said in 2015.
"When I see this, I feel so proud and excited seeing real change happen. On a certain level, it’s the same in Buffalo. Every time we come back, we get a little tour to see what’s new. That’s such an exciting thing, to see and feel tangible change and progress being made."
And, if fans are lucky, there's a tiny chance that Buffalo Sabres star Ryan O'Reilly could drop by. Don't plan on it, but his appearance would be cool.
2) Spikes for Tykes, noon to 5 p.m. Aug. 20 at Woodlawn Beach (3580 Lake Shore Road, Blasdell). Admission is $40, which includes food and drink, for spectators, and can be purchased on site.
Commentary: The annual fundraiser for the Kelly For Kids Foundation rolls Sunday at Woodlawn, where an all-day volleyball tournament, featuring more than 50 teams across all talent levels, is the main attraction.
Hall of Fame Bills quarterback Jim Kelly will be on-site, ticketed and silent auctions will be conducted and complimentary food and drinks will be served.
3) "The Little Mermaid," 7 p.m. Aug. 18, 2 and 7 p.m. Aug. 19 and 1 and 6 p.m. Aug. 20 in Shea's Performing Arts Center (646 Main St.). Tickets, which can be purchased here, begin at $37 for individual seats.
Commentary: Although Ben Siegel's review suggests the touring theater production as a whole leaves much to be desired, the major allure should be the toughness and outstanding performances of Diana Huey, the Japanese-American actress cast as Ariel, who admitted that she was the victim of racism during an earlier portion of the tour.
The News' Colin Dabkowski's interview went viral, collecting almost a quarter-million page-views in its first three days. As you'd expect, the social response supported Huey's efforts in a role where race should not matter.
4) Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade and Festival, parade begins at 1 p.m. Aug. 19 in Niagara Square and finishes at Niagara and Porter Avenue, festival follows the parade and then continues from noon to 9 p.m. Aug. 20 in LaSalle Park.
Commentary: Puerto Rican pride will reverberate through the West Side all weekend under the motto "Always United," beginning with Saturday's parade north along Niagara Street and then two evenings of entertainment in LaSalle Park.
Headlining music acts include Frankie Negron on Saturday and Tito Nieves on Sunday; a full schedule of events may be found here.
Commentary: Zandalee Delgado and Sharlee Lissette present the fourth annual fashion show, themed around Hollywood Glitz & Glam, that will trumpet the styles of TT New York and a few local vendors.
A portion of the proceeds will benefit cancer research, as the organizers honor the memory of their grandparents, Barbara Robins and Robert Rice. A complimentary valet, cash bar and food will spice up the beginning of the event.
Commentary: There will be no shortage of entertainment in RiverWorks Saturday, as event organizer-promoter Lindsey Taylor presents the first Beau Fleuve.
Major local musical acts Drea D'Nur, a soul-jazz singer, and Eric Van Houten, a rising country musician, are slated to perform, while a poetry slam, silent disco, lawn games, art exhibitions and much more will be spread throughout the cavernous venue.
7) Downward Goat by Love in Motion Yoga, noon to 1 p.m. and 3 to 4 p.m. Aug. 20 in Alpine Made (5445 East Creek Road, South Wales). Register for one of the two classes here, and be aware that space is limited.
Commentary: One of the hottest trends in yoga? Baby goats (or "kids," the technical term). The premise is simple - yogis go about a class as usual, but baby goats march about, exploring various nooks and crannies, walking on backs, nibbling curiously and causing harmless mischief. It's all rather adorable.
Alpine Made in South Wales is the site for two classes led by Kathleen Engelhardt on Sunday afternoon, with refreshment from Bootleg Bucha. Space is limited as not to intimidate the goats (OK, that last part is made up, but space really is limited). Expect more of these events in the future.
Commentary: If you prefer something a little harder than Arkells, the combination of Taking Back Sunday and Every Time I Die should satisfy a different breed of music fans.
Demand for the show has changed the venue, as River Fest Park, across the river from Buffalo RiverWorks, will host the outdoor concert. TBS and ETID made the tough-to-crack "3 can't-miss shows" list by Mac McGuire, which you can read below.
9) Jack Craft Fair, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 19 at Wilkeson Pointe at the Outer Harbor (225 Fuhrmann Blvd.). Free and open to the public.
Commentary: Scoot to the Outer Harbor for the free Jack Craft Fair, billed as an alternative to the traditional art festivals in Buffalo. The highlight of the fair is the eclectic list of vendors, hailing from Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Ontario, and specializing in everything from jewelry to stamps to candles. Find the schedule of events here.
Commentary: The festival takes flight with Torn Space's performance of "The Gathering" on Friday in Silo City (weather dependent), with a repeat performance the following evening.
Over at the Adam Mickiewicz Library in Polonia, New York City troupe Palissimo will deliver two shows, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, of a rather dark production. Response continues in the middle of September, when fellow NYC theater group 600 Highwaymen tackles "The Fever." Thorough previews are available at Torn Space's website.
BONUS No. 3: Buffalo Bisons' Superhero Night, 6:05 p.m. Aug. 19 at Coca-Cola Field (One James D. Griffin Plaza). Tickets are $13.50 if purchased before game-day, $15.50 at the gate, or $81 for a four-pack that includes four Sahlen's hot dogs and four soft drinks.
BONUS No. 4: Ultimate Night of Destruction at the Erie County Fair, 7:30 p.m. Aug. 19 at the Gusto Grandstand of the Hamburg Fairgrounds (5600 McKinley Pkwy., Hamburg). General admission is $16 and can be purchased here. Children 12 and under enter for free.
Reminder: The Erie County Fair runs through Aug. 20 at the Fairgrounds.
BONUS No. 5: Buffalo Scottish Festival, 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Aug. 19, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 20 in Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village (3755 Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst). Cost is $13 for adults, $11 for military and seniors, $10 for BNHV members, while children 12 and under get in for free.