Hopscotch Music Festival begins, college football kicks off, plus 10 of our Best Bets

NC State’s Doeren previews game against ECU

NC State head coach Dave Doeren talks about the Wolfpack's season opener against the ECU Pirates during a press availability Monday, August 26, 2019.
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NC State head coach Dave Doeren talks about the Wolfpack's season opener against the ECU Pirates during a press availability Monday, August 26, 2019.

There’s a lot going on this week. Here’s your cheat sheet of can’t-miss events around town.

College Football Kickoff Tobacco Road

The gridiron heats up on Tobacco Road for Labor Day Weekend as ACC teams kick off and fans tailgate at NCSU’s Carter-Finley Stadium for a noon game against ECU. UNC takes on the University of South Carolina in Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium at 3:30 p.m. Blue Devils look to take down some top Tigers as they take on Alabama in Atlanta (3:30 p.m., ABC). Aug. 31. Prices vary. gopack.com; goheels.com; goduke.com

Hopscotch Music Festival

The three-day “weird and wonderful” music fest dubbed as “America’s (secretly) best festival” is back for its 10th year to take over the streets of downtown Raleigh with bands, beats and brews to the tune of 120+ acts performing. City Plaza, Red Hat Amphitheater and other venues around downtown. Sept. 5-7, times vary. Single show tickets for main stage shows ($37.50 to $47.50); single-day passes ($89 to $99) and multi-day wristband tickets available. hopscotchmusicfest.com

‘The Wizard of Oz’ 3D: 80th anniversary event

Follow the yellow brick road to Marbles IMAX for the final weekend of this limited run of “The Wizard of Oz” in 3D to fete the 80th anniversary of the classic film. You may even win tickets to Beech Mountain’s magical theme park. Yup, def not in Kansas anymore. 201 E. Hargett St., Raleigh. Aug. 30-Sept. 2, times vary. Tickets $8. marbleskidsmuseum.org

Craig Robinson

If character Darryl Philbin of NBC’s “The Office” is your dude, you won’t want to miss Craig Robinson (also of “Knocked Up” fame, and much more) as he rolls through Improv Raleigh. 1224 Parkside Main St., Cary. Aug. 30, 7:30 and 9:45 p.m. showings.; Aug. 31, 7 and 9:30 p.m. Ages 21+, tickets from $32. improv.com/raleigh

African American Cultural Festival

Celebrating 10 years, the annual fest celebrates African American culture with art, music, food and community over two days. Local and global performers, artists and food vendors will descend upon downtown Raleigh along Fayetteville Street — from Hargett Street to City Plaza — for two days. City Plaza, Raleigh. Aug. 31, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (art and vendor booths close at dusk), Family Village hours 11:30 am. to 8 p.m.; and Sept. 1, 1 to 10 p.m. (art and vendor booths close at dusk), Family Village hours 1:30 p.m. to 8 p.m, time. Free. aacfestival.org

‘American Idol’ auditions

Think you’re the next “American Idol”? Auditions for the 18th season of the singing competition are Sunday, Sept. 1, at Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts. There are plenty of rules and information on how to register for the auditions. If you’ve seen the TV show, you know there might be plenty of bonding time with your fellow aspiring superstars as you wait in line. Details are at americanidol.com/auditions

Crank for the Paws

Tails up and wagging; ruff times are over! Clearly, dogs have rights too… so says Senate Bill 290 that Gov. Cooper signed into law, allowing dogs into tasting rooms that don’t prepare food. To celebrate, Crank Arm Brewing Company is hosting this beer-drinking, butt-sniffing (dogs only, please) event to benefit Cause for Paws to facilitate the adoption (and tasting room visit) of all the furry friends. Food carts will be set up, as well as a mobile dog groomer for nail grindings, a photo booth and raffle. 319 W. Davie St., Raleigh. Sept. 1, noon to 10 p.m. Free to enter. facebook.com/CrankArmBrew/

Summer concerts

Enjoy the waning days of summer with some free fam-friendly fun in Cary, featuring music by Irresistible Groove and fireworks. Crossroads Plaza, Dicks Sporting Goods, Cary. Aug. 30, 6-10 p.m. Free. facebook.com/CrossroadsPlazaCary

Rod Man

If you haven’t seen this Last Comic Standing (he won the NBC comedian reality show in 2014), run — don’t walk — to grab tickets for an uproarious night of relatable stand-up. Goodnights Comedy Club, Raleigh. Aug. 30 and 31, 7:30 and 10 p.m. showings.; Sept. 1, 7 p.m. From $22. goodnightscomedy.com

Play On!

Want to play games in the middle of the day? Think giant checkers, Jenga, pingpong and more via this Downtown Raleigh Alliance program inviting denizens, workers and visitors alike to take a midday break. Not in the playing mood? Throw your feet up in a hammock and relax. City Plaza, Raleigh. Aug. 30, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Free. downtownraleigh.org/do/play-on

Finally Friday: ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’

“Jock! Start your engine,” and head over to the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, where science fact meets Hollywood fiction for a film screening of the famous film, food, live music and science stations. Assistant State Archaeologist . David Cranford will be on hand to help separate science from fiction following the screening. North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, 11 W. Jones St., Raleigh. Aug. 30, 5:30-9:30 p.m. 5:30-7 p.m., food, live music and science stations; 7 p.m., movie begins, followed by commentary. $5. naturalsciences.org

Bull City Rumble

Get ready to rumble as vintage motorcycles overtake Main Street in Durham for the 15th annual rumble, featuring the AMDC Wall of Death, “America’s original extreme motorcycle thrill show”; Norton Commando Raffle, an outdoor stage and more, hosted by Ton Up NC. Main Street, Durham. Aug. 30-Sept. 1, times vary. Bike show access, free. bullcityrumble.com

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