1) Greek Fest, 11 a.m. to midnight June 2 and 3, noon to 9 p.m. June 4 at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church (146 W. Utica St.). Admission is just $2, while food tickets are $1 apiece. See the festival brochure here.
Commentary: Delve into Greek culture with a weekend trip to the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, where a smorgasbord of authentic foods - including the elusive tiropita, dolmathakia and kourambiedes - will be available for purchase.
Tours of the church, a host of craft vendors downstairs, plus Greek dancing, live music and a beer tent are additional reasons to try to navigate parking on West Utica Street.
Commentary: From the Gay 5K to the Dyke March to the Pride Parade and Pride Festival, Buffalo Pride Week is jam-packed with activities celebrating the LGBTQ community.
Read about the group's growth - including the recent gay-straight alliance at McKinley High School - in Dabkowski's intro post here, then scroll through the related events. Don't miss last year's Smiles gallery from the Pride Festival, too.
3) Star Wars Night with the Bisons, gates at 4 p.m., first pitch at 6:05 on June 3 at Coca-Cola Field (275 Washington St.). Tickets are $13.50 and are available here - expect the game to sell out well before Saturday. Fewer than 1,000 remain as of Thursday morning.
Commentary: Star Wars villain Jabba the Hutt somehow survived the strangling by Princess Leia and his exploding ship in order to appear live at the Bisons' game vs. the Charlotte Knights on Saturday. Buffalo will don jerseys adorned with Jabba's
chiseled slug-like body, if you're wondering why the pitcher for the Chicago White Sox affiliate can't find the strike zone (or hits batters).
Commentary: There are few bigger names than Aldean in country music; the Georgia native has laid claim to the last two American Country Music awards for Entertainer of the Year and shows few signs of slowing down. Chris Young, Kane Brown and Dee Jay Silver will open on Saturday.
Aldean's most recent album, fall 2016's "They Don't Know," debuted at No. 1 on Billboard and finished the year as the No. 14 country album in the U.S. Look back at photos of Aldean performing in his last visit, as well as photos of his fans.
5) Rock the Gates, noon to 11 p.m. June 3 at 12 Gates Brewing Company (80 Earhart Dr., East Amherst). General admission tickets are $10 pre-sale, $15 at the door. VIP passes are available for $25, while a Ripley's Package runs for $50. Full ticket details here.
Commentary: This music-and-beer party throws back to the 1980s and '90s, with live music from era-specific bands Hair Nation, cover specialists Invisible Touch, Kurt and the Loders, and Scribe for the Tribe slated to perform. Two groups of food trucks will vend - the first wave from noon to 5 p.m., the second from 5 to 11 p.m.
The brewery will roll out a special beer for the event: Ancient Chaos, which is a dark saison aged with black currants and pinot noir oak from Leonard Oakes Winery. Zombie paintball, a cornhole tournament and a photo booth lend some variety to the all-day event. There will be free transportation from Coles on Elmwood to the East Amherst brewery, too, running from 2:30 p.m. to 11.
6) Buffalo Zine Fair, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 3 in Sugar City (1239 Niagara St.). Free entry.
Commentary: For those seeking an inexpensive, artsy event, head to Niagara Street for the annual Zine Fair, presented by Sugar City and Gutter Pop Comics. More than 30 local vendors, listed here, will showcase their DIY creations and self-published works to remember the glory days of print, a now largely outdated medium. Well, that sentence was sad to write.
7) Parker's Great British Weekend, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. June 2, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 3 at Parker's Proper Fish & Chips (1216 South Park Ave.). Free to attend.
Commentary: Parker's owners Damian and Vicky Parker will throw a two-day party to recognize National Fish and Chips Shop Day (yes, that exists), offering a free scone and a cup of tea to anyone who purchases a fish and chips on either day.
Stop by on Saturday, too, when the Parkers will host a Victorian-style barbecue, featuring both Lincolnshire sausage and Parker's classic. The massive soccer dart board will be out, an activity that seems quite addicting.
8) Art Alive, noon to 2 p.m. June 3 at Albright-Knox Art Gallery lawn (1285 Elmwood Ave.). Free to attend as a spectator.
Commentary: Stroll around the grounds of the Albright-Knox on Saturday to appreciate the artistic fruits of kids, teens and adults in creating tableaux, representations - using people and props - of famous works. Awards for Most Unusual, Best Craftsmanship and Best Tableau from the Albright-Knox's collection will be doled out to each age group.
Here are some great entries from Art Alive through the years.
Commentary: The former M.A.S.H. Bash marches on for another year, raising money for the Western New York chapter of the American Red Cross along the way. Admission entitles guests to two drinks and unlimited food, plus live music and dancing. Attendees are encouraged to wear military garb - camouflage, dog tags, etc. - for the themed event.
Look back at the Smiles gallery from the event in 2015.
10) QCRG championship: Alley Kats vs. Dollies, 7 p.m. June 2 at Buffalo RiverWorks (359 Ganson St.). Tickets are $15 general admission, while there are several VIP table options. More on tickets here.
Commentary: Expect an exciting clash for the Queen City Roller Girls championship bout on Friday night, where the Alley Kats, the first-place finisher among the house teams, faces the Devil Dollies, who smoked the Suicidal Saucies, 246-92, to land a spot in the final.
The Kats took down Friday's foe, 163-114, in their only regular-season meeting. Take a look at a Smiles gallery and some shots of the action at that bout.
BONUS No. 1: West Seneca Spring Fest, 6 p.m. June 2 and 3 at Winchester Fire Company (514 Harlem Road, West Seneca). Admission is $5 each night.
BONUS No. 2: German Sommerfest, noon to 7 p.m. June 4 at Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village (3755 Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst). Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for military and seniors, $6 for children and members.
BONUS No. 3: Hydraulic Hearth's beer garden opens, 6 to 9 p.m. June 2 at 716 Swan St. Free to attend.