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Festivals for the Rest of Us

Sep 03, 2015 04:00PM ● By Melissa Lauren

Photo Credit: C. Durfor

Enjoy festivals for the rest of us! The Maryland Renaissance Festival is in Crownsville and the Monty Alexander Jazz Festival is on the Eastern Shore. Save the Date for the Maryland Seafood Festival and enter for your chance to win VIP tickets! Plus, music and arts events…

Photo Credit: Buddy Secor

Maryland Renaissance Festival

Renaissance Festival Grounds, 1821 Crownsville Road, Annapolis, MD 21401, Friday-Sunday now through 
October 25th, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., 
$7-24, 410-266-7304,
Huzzah! The Maryland Renaissance Festival, a local tradition for the entire family, is in its 39th season. The ‘Renfest’ runs Saturdays and Sundays (and Labor Day Monday) now through October 25th. Enjoy the thrills of entertainment and merriment; jousting, feasting, handmade crafts, and more. You can even show up dressed in traditional garb and there are costume rentals available onsite. Travel back in time and rub elbows with King Henry and his Royal Court. Be awestruck by the magicians, minstrels, and musicians.

Courtesy photo

Monty Alexander Jazz Festival

Avalon Theatre, 40 East Dover Street, Easton, MD 21601, Thursday, September 3rd- Sunday, September 6th, Times and prices vary, 410-819-0380,
The Monty Alexander Jazz Festival will celebrate its sixth anniversary at the intimate Avalon Theatre in Easton on Labor Day weekend September 3rd–6th. The extraordinary energy and virtuosity of Artistic Director, Monty Alexander has vaulted the Festival into a four-day event showcasing new talent, as well as Jazz greats. 2015 Grammy Award Nominee, René Marie is pictured. Other festival artists include: tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, vocalists Alicia Olatuja and Caterina Zapponi, and music from The Conservatory Classic Jazz Band. Times vary.

Save the Date for The Maryland Seafood Festival

Photo Credit: Jay Fleming
Saturday, September 12th and Sunday, September 13th
The 48th Annual Maryland Seafood Festival will include a variety of delicious seafood, exciting and new demonstrations and competitions, toe tapping musical entertainment, kids’ activities, contests, exhibits, vendors, and more. Relax and enjoy the beautiful shores of the Chesapeake Bay at Sandy Point State Park on Saturday, September 12th and Sunday, September 13th. Tickets are $15–120 including VIP pricing. Parking is available at Anne Arundel Community College with shuttles to the park (limited parking is available at Sandy Point State Park). The festival will benefit the Chesapeake Bay Trust, Boy Scout Troops, Crabs for Kids Foundation, Annapolis Green, and the Foundation for Community Betterment. For more information call 410-353-9237 or visit

Enter to win free VIP Tickets to The Maryland Seafood Festival here!

Happy Labor Day from your Friends at What’s Up? Media! Looking for something to do this Labor Day weekend? Make fun plans by browsing our Online Calendar at I’m sure you all will make an event out of your Labor Day and hope you have a safe and happy holiday. I am thrilled to be working with the fantastic team here at What’s Up! My goal for this blog has been to write about everything from family-friendly events, charitable events, visual and performing arts, sports and special events, concerts and festivals to happenings that are a stone's throw away – all of which include various diverse cultures. I have always had a love of getting cultured by experiencing local and regional community events. For coverage of your community event, please email Thanks!

- Melissa Lauren, Community Events Editor

More Events Include…

Anne Arundel County:

A Journey Towards Greatness: A Talk with Former Detroit Lions Offensive Tackle, John W. Smith

Banneker-Douglass Museum Presents A Journey Towards Greatness: A Talk with Former Detroit Lions Offensive Tackle, John W. Smith as part of their Untold Stories Speaker Series on Saturday, September 5th from 1-3 p.m. This free event is located at 84 Franklin Street, Annapolis, MD 21401. 
John Wesley Smith received a Bachelor of Science degree from Maryland State College (currently the University of Maryland Eastern Shore) in 1965 after graduating from Bates High School in Annapolis Maryland in 1962. During his time at UMES, John’s defensive prowess helped the Hawks to an overall record of 19 wins, 8 losses and 1 tie, which represents a winning percentage of 67.9 percent. John was drafted by the Detroit Lions in 1965. Untold Stories: Athletes of Maryland’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities is a one-of-a-kind exhibition which celebrates the stellar achievements of athletes who helped shape the face of African American college athletics and the athletic prowess of athletes who excelled in football, basketball, track, tennis, bowling, and lacrosse. Untold Stories infuses both locally and nationally known sports figures who have matriculated through schools in of Maryland. The exhibit is on display now through October 17th.

What’s Dope Hip-Hop Open Mic Night

The Metropolitan Kitchen and Lounge, 169 West Street, Annapolis, MD 21401, Thursday, September 3rd, 8 p.m. $5-10 (All Ages Show), 410-280-5160,
The Metropolitan Kitchen and Lounge hosts What’s Dope Hip-Hop Open Mic Night as part of The Dig, a three day music event, which benefits Breast and Ovarian Cancer Research. The Jamla Showcase with 9TH Wonder (Grammy Winner), Rapsody, Big Remo, and Heather Victoria perform on Friday, September 4th at 8 p.m. for $15. Day three of The Dig includes Right On! Record Fair Saturday, September 5th from 12-5 p.m. for $3. Find vinyl and bring yours to trade and stay for the after party. What’s Dope Hip-Hop Open Mic Night is always the first Thursday of the month where they encourage all to sign up upon arrival to perform their beats, raps, spoken word poetry, and more. What’s Dope has featured some impressive local and regional talent!

Courtesy photo

Summer Concerts at Quiet Waters Park: Annapolis Symphony Orchestra

Quiet Waters Park, 600 Quiet Waters Park Road, Annapolis, MD 21403, Sunday, September 6th, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Free, 410-222-1777, 
José-Luis Novo, Music Director conducts the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra performing along with the Philip Richebourg Choir. For over 50 years, the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra has performed a variety of symphonic music for audiences of all ages. Take in the beautiful music while enjoying the beauty of the park.

Eastern Shore:

Courtesy photo

18th Annual Charity Boat Auction

Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, 213 North Talbot Street, St. Michaels, MD 21663, Saturday, September 5th, 11 a.m., 410-745-2916, 
Get ready to bid on the boat of your dreams on Saturday, September 5th as the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum hosts its 18th Annual Charity Boat Auction. More than 100 boats will be in the water and on land to be auctioned off to the highest bidders. Boats of all sizes from sailing dinghies to cabin cruisers will be up for bid. Advanced, absentee bids will be accepted, and can be called in at 410-745-4992 or taken in person until 2 p.m. on Friday, September 4th. As an absolute auction, all boats will be sold the day of the event, with a title office set up at the museum for ease of transfer. Proceeds benefit the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. For more information call 410-745-4960 or visit

Courtesy photo

60 Stellar Paintings

Troika Gallery, 9 South Harrison Street, Easton, MD 21601, September 4th-September 29th, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Free admission (all paintings are under $600), 410-770-9190, 
Troika Gallery presents 60 Stellar Paintings Under $600 on display September 4th through September 29th.


Courtesy photo

KERPLUNK! Free Family Art Drop-In

Creative Alliance at The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21224, Saturday, September 5th, 12-3 p.m., Free, 410-276-1651, 
Open to families and kids of all ages! Tour the galleries and design unique art projects linked to the exhibitions. Stop in for a quick visit or stay for the entire afternoon exploring art materials and let your creativity soar. Youth must be accompanied by an adult. No registration required.

Michelle Obama, Screenprint on Paper (2008) by Mickalene Thomas. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery.

Eye Pop: The Celebrity Gaze

Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, 8th Street Northeast & F Street Northeast, Washington, D.C. 20002, Every day now through July 10, 2016, 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Free, 202-633-1000,
Celebrity faces are everywhere. The National Portrait Gallery works to include portraits of people who transcend fame and recognize them for achievement in its collection. This exhibition questions the separate roles of subject, artist and viewer in creating and experiencing the celebrity gaze. Many of these portraits are masterful photographs, such as Todd Glaser’s panoramic image of surfer Kelly Slater or Annie Leibovitz’s classic depiction of Renée Fleming on stage; however, painters, printmakers and time-based media artists are also represented. Will Cotton presents Katy Perry as an airbrushed confection, while Colin Davidson gives us a close-up view of Brad Pitt. Bo Gehring allows us an intimate view of Esperanza Spalding listening to the music that inspires her own work. And Luke Dubois pulls from the Internet and his own complex software to give us a generative, ever-changing double portrait of the founders of Google, Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Taken together, these portraits allow us to question celebrity and peel back its layers. The National Portrait Gallery Portraiture Now and Americans Now committee of historians and curators have selected objects for this exhibition.

To view more events taking place this weekend, please browse our Online Calendar at  Be sure to Follow What’s Up? on Twitter, Instagram, and Like Us on Facebook  For coverage of your community event, please send press releases to mlauren@whatsupmag.comMelissa Lauren, Community Events Editor and former WRNR and WTMD DJ, writes the weekly What’s Up? Events Blog and E-Newsletter every Thursday. To subscribe visit