First Friday overflowing with options

Betsy PickleOur Town Arts

August’s First Friday promises so many options, it’s going to be hard to plan your evening. Music, theatre, visual arts – pick your pleasure, but don’t be afraid to mix it up.

Theatre Knoxville Downtown debuts “Doublewide, Texas” on Friday. The comedy by Jones, Hope & Wooten – described as “flat-out funny” – takes place at one of the smallest trailer parks in Texas. When the offbeat residents get wind of a plan to annex their little slice of oddball heaven, they come together to fight off the threat. The show runs through Aug. 18.

Only two weekends remain in the Tennessee Stage Company’s 29th Summer Shakespeare Festival, Shakespeare on the Square – on Market Square, of course. “The Comedy of Errors” is tonight, Saturday, Aug. 9 and Aug. 11. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” runs on Friday, Sunday, Aug. 8 and Aug. 10. Shows start at 7 p.m.

First Friday music should satisfy eclectic tastes. Rusty Holloway will bring jazz to the Bistro at the Bijou from 9 to 11 p.m. Blues is the ticket with the Stacy Mitchhart Band performing at Alive After Five at 6 p.m. at the Knoxville Museum of Art. There’s a Jerry Garcia B-day Bash starting at 9 p.m. at Scruffy City Hall. Tellios will play at Boyd’s Jig & Reel starting at 10 p.m. Cheer Accident and Weird Ian will perform at the Pilot Light beginning at 10.

L&N Station from Terina Gillette’s hometown series (Photo from Facebook)

The Emporium Center, 100 S. Gay St., is the heart of the art scene for First Friday. The opening reception is 5-9 p.m. and will feature flamenco dancing by Tinadre at 7 p.m. New exhibits at the Emporium include Terina Gillette: “Discovery: An Exploration of the Nuances of Life” (acrylic, pastel and mixed media); Broadway Studios & Gallery: “Rare Combinations” (various media, 10 artists); Adam Newman: “delusionary” (mixed media); Michelle Barillaro: “Travel” (abstract paintings with acrylic, charcoal and graphite); and League of Scruffy Photographers: “Observing Knoxville” (photography).

More First Friday art is spread throughout businesses and eateries downtown. Get more details at and

The Tennessee Theatre’s Summer Movie Magic series continues with the original “Ghostbusters” at 8 p.m. on First Friday. But don’t forget to head back downtown on August’s first Sunday, when the Tennessee shows Alfred Hitchcock’s “North by Northwest” at 3 p.m.

Eva Marie Saint and Cary Grant in the 1959 classic “North by Northwest”

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