If you’re a journalist in South Carolina, you know Jay Bender as the attorney for the South Carolina Press Association and an all-around ass kicker when it comes to issues of open government. You might also know that he’s fond of barbecue and motorcycles. But did you know he paints, too? Over the Mantel Gallery (3142 Carlisle St.) presents The Off Center Paintings of Jay Bender (Not a Pretty Sight); there’s an opening reception tonight from 6 to 8 p.m. Call 719-1713 for more information.
Want to hear something new? It’s new music night at New Brookland Tavern: Tonight’s bill presents Unkindways, The Forward, Katie Cole and Finesse. What do they sound like? Who knows, but it’ll cost you just $5 ($8 if you’re under 21) to find out. The show starts at 7 p.m.; visit newbrooklandtavern.com or call 791-4413 for more information.
The University of South Carolina Gamecocks take on the Texas A&M Aggies at Williams-Brice Stadium at 6 p.m. If the game were to be decided on team name alone, the Aggies would have already been sent packing. (An “aggie” is one who attends an agricultural college. We’ll keep our fighting roosters.) If you’re lucky enough to have tickets, rock on. If not, the game will be the first one broadcast on the new SEC Network and will no doubt be playing in many local bars. Want to know more about this season’s Gamecocks? Pick up The Side Line, which is inserted into this week’s Free Times.
Love theater but want the Cliff’s Notes version? Then Town Theatre has just the program for you: It’s the encore edition of Let’s Go to the Previews!, in which actors give 10-minute sneak peaks at such shows as Oklahoma, White Christmas, Driving Miss Daisy, Always…Patsy Cline, Sugar (based on Some Like it Hot) and Spamalot. Tickets are $10; show time is 8 p.m. Visit towntheatre.com or call 799-2510 for more information.
Wait … you mean the Gamecocks aren’t the only football team in this town? The Benedict College Tigers take on the S.C. State Bulldogs in the Palmetto Capital City Classic at Benedict’s Charlie W. Johnson Stadium. Kickoff is at 5 p.m.; see page 14 for more information.
Christian rockers Casting Crowns headline the Township Auditorium in a show that also includes Mandisa and Sidewalk Prophets. Hey, we’re thinking that if you listen to three Christian bands in one night, maybe God will give you a pass and let you sleep in on Sunday for once. Tickets range from $26 to $56; visit ticketmaster.com, call 1-800-745-3000 or stop by the box office to order. Show time is 7 p.m. Visit thetownship.org for more information.
You’ve still got a few days to see Boyhood at the Nickelodeon Theatre, but consider this a reminder. The film, by Richard Linklater, follows the life of Mason over the course of 12 years. Rather than using separate actors for different ages, though, Boyhood was actually filmed with the same cast over the course of 12 years — and Ellar Coltrane as Mason is getting rave reviews everywhere. Imdb.com users give the film 8.8 out of 10; Rotten Tomato’s critics give it a 99 percent approval rating. Damn. Show times are at 2, 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. Visit
nickelodeon.org for details.
Labor Day was created by the labor movement, so it’s kind of odd that it’s celebrated in South Carolina, where we pride ourselves on our super-low rates of unionized workers and our governor does everything she can to keep it that way. But hey, everybody likes a day off, right? The Chapin Labor Day Festival & Parade is today; it’s free, and it runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
You think it’s easy to do stand-up comedy? Then you’re a dumbass. Nonetheless, the Art Bar welcomes you to the stage of its Open Mic Comedy Night. Just head to the Art Bar, sign up at 9 p.m. and prepare for the laughs — or lack thereof. Oh yeah, it might be a good idea to write some jokes and practice in front of a mirror, too.
Are you a local musician? A local businessperson? You might have more in common than you think. At Music Break, presented by Columbia Opportunity Resource, musicians, music industry professionals and young professionals mix, mingle and learn from each other. There’s a free workshop for musicians at 5 p.m., followed by networking and entertainment from 5:30 to 8 p.m. That’s all pretty cool, but you know what’s even cooler? The event is being held at the new Music Farm, next to Tin Roof in the Vista. Admission is $20; visit ourcor.org or call 733-2511 for more information. For more on the entertainment, see page 57.
Find more things to do at free-times.com/events.
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