What to Do/Hear/See | Aug. 28-Sept. 3

Didya miss us? After a brief hiatus to recharge the batteries, we’re back with a freshly harvested batch of arts and entertainment picks for you. As you no doubt know, Monday marks Labor Day, America’s unofficial farewell-to-summer holiday. Unofficial because summer officially runs through Sept. 21, and even more unofficial because it used to mean the school year was about to start, too. Does that mean there’s nothing noteworthy left about the weekend? Hardly, as supported by the voluminous following list.


Cincinnati for more than two-score years has celebrated Labor Day with a big bang. The 43rd WEBN fireworks (the current co-sponsor is Western & Southern) launch at 9:07 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 1. It’s the capstone to a full day of entertainment and activities that kicks off at noon along both sides of the mighty O-hi-o.

Importantly, Riverfest has become an annual milestone on which many charitable organizations hang their hats. Whether it’s cancer, hunger or education, there’s an event to benefit a cause dear to you. Find out more in detail in M&M’s Riverfest community preview.

If partying with 500,000 of your closest friends isn’t your style, there are plenty of other opportunities to get out of the house this weekend. Here are a few:

Blue Ash-Montgomery Symphony Orchestra | 9520 Towne Square Ave., Blue Ash, OH 45242; 513-549-2197

Sunday, Sept. 1, 7 p.m. “Music by the Numbers”

BAMSO’s annual Labor Day concert this year includes music of Holst, Strauss, Beethoven, a tribute to Frank Sinatra, and the music of Chicago (the band).

Cincinnati Warbirds | 262 Wilmer Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45226

Friday, Aug. 30, though Monday, Sept 2: Lunken Airport Days

If you see a bit of overlap here with 1940s Day at Union Terminal, which took place Aug. 10, you’d be right. Despite all of the terminal’s amenities, though, one just can’t land a B-17 there. And land a B-17 the Warbirds will – over and over again – at Lunken Airport. You can even ride aboard if you want. (Check the website for reservation details.) There will be many other vintage aircraft on display, too, and even free hot dogs. Color guard ceremony is at noon each day. The Americana-themed festivities run 10 a.m.-4 p.m. each day (B-17 rides claim through 6 p.m.).


Krohn Conservatory | 1501 Eden Park Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-421-5707

Opens Saturday, Aug. 31: “A Bread Maker’s Garden”

In the latest seasonal display at the city’s conservatory (the plant kind), see the grains that have nourished mankind since the dawn of civilization. They’ll be growing among the bold colors of anemones, asters, chrysanthemums, coreopsis and more. You also can learn about various methods of growing and harvesting wheat, rye and other bread-making grains. Through Oct. 20.

Barbarians at the Ohio Renaissance Festival


Even the behemoth that is Riverfest can’t suck all the festive air out of this weekend. Also on tap:

Cincinnati Hispanic Fest | 7801 Anthony Wayne Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45216

Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.

With a variety of Latin food, dances, live music and entertainment, and the Copa Su Casa soccer tournament finals, this onetime church festival has grown to become a major cultural local festival. It’s a good cause, too, with festival proceeds helping to support local Latino families in need with scholarships, assistance with housing costs, food, and even funeral costs. At the Hamilton County Fairgrounds in Carthage.

Ohio Renaissance Festival | 10542 East State Route 73, Waynesville, OH 45068; 513-897-7000

Opens Saturday, Aug. 31

The folks an hour north of town on I-71 have been indulging in fantasy time travel to about the 16th century for 30 years now. Through Oct. 27, enjoy a variety of themed weekends and a king’s feast worth of mead and turkey drumsticks, jousts and fools, and plenty of merchants hawking their wares.


Cindependent Film Fest | 1404 Main St., Cincinnati, OH, 45202; 214-843-6781

Thursday, Aug. 29, through Saturday, Aug. 31: 2019 festival

It seems as though the Queen City has become cinema central of late, with a new production in town seeming every few weeks. Those are mostly Hollywood types, though, and the nonprofit behind Cindependent wants to make it a center for locally based, independent filmmaking, too. Part of that means recognizing outstanding achievement – hence the fest. It’s an ambitious undertaking, with events and workshops at four venues across Over-the-Rhine. Screenings are mostly at the Woodward Theater (see website for schedule).

You also can see the Best of Fest short films (no, we don’t know who won yet) in a screening at 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 1, at the Esquire Theatre (320 Ludlow Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45220; 513-281-8750). You’ll recall they screened the 2018 winners just a few weeks ago.

Cincinnati Film Society | 708 E. McMillan St., Cincinnati, OH 45206; 513-212-6761

Saturday, Aug. 31 | African & Asian Diaspora Film Festival

This festival got underway in our week off, but there was enough to see that it takes two weekends. On Saturday, the millergardette gallery hosts two blocks of short subjects, beginning at 1 p.m.


Cincy Stories | Woodward Theater, 1404 Main St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

Tuesday, Sept. 3, 7 p.m.: Evening of personal storytelling and music

The folks at Cincy Stories say their organization exists to build community through story. The evening begins with music by Blossom Hall, followed by stories shared by Jason Snell (We Have Become Vikings), Ashlee Young (StrivePartnership), Tia Brown (Seven Hills Neighborhood Housing), Marcus Thompson (Skanksa community development manager), Lana Wright (co-owner of Senate, Abigail Street, Pontiac and Holiday Spirits Bar) and stand up comedian Geoff Tate. Rest assured, these are not sales pitches or testimonials, but true stories from folks who call Cincinnati home. Some are funny, some sad. All very personal. There is a $5 suggested donation, and a cash bar.

Mercantile Library | 414 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-621-0717

Thursday, Aug. 29, 6:30 p.m.: Climate Change, Part I

You can actually call the 2019 Science & Nature Lecture a series. In partnership with the University of Cincinnati’s Center for Public Engagement with Science, the Merc hosts three evenings focusing on climate change, how it affects the region and you presented by local, regional, and national experts. Thursday is Part I, “Understanding Climate Change,” with local anthropology, geology, paleontology and psychology experts. Subsequent parts are Sept. 12 and Oct. 3.

The KSO at Devou Park


Kentucky Symphony Orchestra | 1 Bandshell Blvd., Covington, KY 41011; 859-431-6216

Saturday, Aug. 31, 7:30: “Russian Allusion”

Usually in the summer, we’re telling you about the KSO’s many subsidiary groups. For the finale of the group’s 25th anniversary series in Devou Park, though, you get the whole enchilada. It’s an evening of Russian orchestral works, with top billing going to Rimsky-Korsakov’s No. 1 hit, “Sheherazade.” Also music by Borodin and Khachaturian. I’ll be there, too, of course, so come on down and say howdy.

It’s Commonly Jazz | 950 Eden Park Drive. Cincinnati, OH 45202

Thursday, Aug. 29, 6 p.m.: Mandy Gaines

You might remember a week back in July during which vocalist Mandy Gaines pulled off a trifecta of appearances, all with different groups. If you missed all of those, here’s one more chance to hear her live. Gaines is the featured artist Thursday for the final It’s Commonly Jazz concert at Eden Park’s Seasongood Pavilion.

Dailey & Vincent

Memorial Hall | 1225 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-977-8838

Friday, Aug. 30, 8 p.m.: Dailey & Vincent

They’ve won five Grammys individually and were nominated for three more together. Jamie Dailey and Darrin Vincent, backed by their tour band, offer their unique take on bluegrass, traditional country and gospel music. It’s the latest offering in Memorial Hall’s American Roots Series.


Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati | 1127 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-421-3555

Opens Saturday, Aug. 31: “Fun Home”

Pre-Labor Day or not, ETC is getting a jump on its 2019-20 season with “Fun House,” a multiple Tony-winning musical by Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori. Adapted from Alison Bechdel’s eponymous graphic novel, it focuses on Alison (the character) at three key points in her life as she reflects on her family after her father’s sudden death. One should not have preconceptions about “musical” in this case; it’s mature in both theme (coming to terms with sexuality, for example) and language.

Cincinnati Shakespeare Company | 1195 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-381-2273

Through Sept. 3: Shakespeare in the Park

Trip away; make no stay;

Meet me all by break of day.

Another summer of outdoor Shakespeare wraps up this weekend with five final performances, including tonight:

  • Wednesday, Aug. 28, 7 p.m.: “Romeo and Juliet” at Village of Evendale Pavilion (10500 Reading Road, Evendale, OH 45241).
  • Thursday, Aug. 29, 7 p.m.: “Macbeth” at St. Lawrence Square in Price Hill (3650 Warsaw Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45205).
  • Friday, Aug. 30, 7 p.m.: “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at Village Green Park (301 Wessel Drive, Fairfield, OH 45014).
  • Saturday, Aug. 31, 7 p.m.: “Macbeth” at Montgomery Park (10105 Montgomery Road, Montgomery, OH 45242).
  • Tuesday, Sept. 3, 7 p.m.: “Macbeth” Lawrenceburg Civic Park (111 E. High St., Lawrenceburg, IN 47025). This performance was rescheduled from a previous rainout.

Sam Branden’s “Splay” at the Art Academy


Art Academy of Cincinnati | 1212 Jackson St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-562-6262

Opens Friday, Aug. 30: “Splay”

It’s an exhibition of new fabric collage works by New York-based artist Sam Branden. Each investigates nuances of the meaning of the word “splay,” both as a noun and verb. Opening reception is 5 p.m. Friday.

Cincinnati Art Museum | 953 Eden Park Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-721-2787 (ARTS)

It’s a very busy week atop Mount Adams as the Burning Man exhibition enters its final days.

Photography Gifting Experience: An integral part of “No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man” was a body of photographs submitted at the behest of the Art Museum by Burning Man attendees. In the spirit of the festival, you could take one of them home. The first 100 visitors to the museum from 5-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 29, may receive a photograph from the exhibition.

Art After Dark: This edition, fittingly, is called “All Good Things Must End.” It begins at 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 30 They’ll have food from Revolution Rotisserie, Dewey’s and Graeter’s (pay heed to the “while supplies last” disclaimer!); free tours and admission to “No Spectators” and “Kimono”; and live music from Triiibe.

The exhibition: “No Spectators” has been on display in two phases since late April. If you haven’t seen the mechanical mushrooms or the dragon car, or heard the gamelan, you have through Monday, Sept. 2. To accommodate the expected crowds, for the first time since 1976, the museum will be open on Labor Day.

Leslie Daly, sculptor: Geode Bowl, at the YWCA

YWCA Greater Cincinnati | 898 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-241-7090

“Sheroes: On the Frontline – The Price of Valor”

This exhibition opened during our hiatus week, but we wanted you to know about it. Hosted by the Ten Talents Network, this exhibition in the Women’s Art Gallery includes the work of eight artists, who reflect on military life, the service and sacrifice of women veterans, and the healing power of art.

Discover more from Movers & Makers

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.