Lots of people think their jobs are important, but most people’s jobs really don’t involve matters of life and death. Diana Holt, on the other hand, does deal with deadly serious matters — like, uh, the death penalty. Holt is an attorney whose work on the Edward Elmore case led to his release from prison after 30 years; CNN later featured the case on its Death Row Stories series. The Death Penalty Resource & Defense Center honors Holt with a reception from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Wine Down on Main (1520 Main St.). There is no charge, but it would be polite to buy a glass or two of wine while you’re there. Call 765-1044 for details.
If Eight Days were to tell you that Malcolm X tried to speak at the Township Auditorium in 1963 but was prevented from doing so by government officials, would you say: (1) “Whoa, I had no idea!” or (2) “I know; I read about that in Free Times”? Trusting that you’re a faithful reader, we believe you chose the second response. Regardless, no one will try to prevent Malcolm X’s daughter Malaak Shabazz from speaking when she heads to the Eau Claire High School Auditorium at 7 p.m. to narrate Malcolm, Martin, Medgar — The Reading. The play, by A. Peter Bailey, explores such questions as how these civil rights leaders would respond to today’s world and whether we even deserve the sacrifices they made. Several leaders of Columbia’s own civil rights movement will be in attendance. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for students; call 733-5634 to order or for more information.
Tartan Day South is not really just one day — it’s four. The first of those four days is today, with Celtic Movie Night at the West Columbia Riverwalk Amphitheatre at 7:30 p.m.; the featured movie is Pride. Visit tartandaysouth.com for full festival details.
Opera! At the museum! The Baker & Baker series presents an evening of well-loved arias at the Columbia Museum of Art. As part of the program, the galleries will be open for attendees to see the Japan and the Jazz Age exhibition, and Palmetto Opera Artistic Director Walter Cuttino will be on hand to talk about the influence of Western opera on Japanese operatic music. Tickets are $40 for adults, $5 for students; visit columbiamuseum.org to order. Music starts at 7 p.m.; happy hour starts at 6 p.m.
After being raped twice in one day, a mute seamstress is engulfed in homicidal rage and roams the streets of New York City looking to murder any male she can find. It’s the 1981 film Ms. 45 at the Nickelodeon Theatre, and it’s just the kind of warped plot we know you’ll enjoy. Show time is 11 p.m.; tickets are $10. Visit nickelodeon.org to order.
As we said earlier, Tartan Day South actually spans four days (Thursday through Sunday). But if you only make it to one of them, this is probably the one. The event features Celtic games, swordplay, athletic competitions, dance, storytelling, music, food and more, and it’s spread all over the Historic Columbia Speedway grounds in Cayce from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults; $5 for kids ages 6-12; and free or kids 5 and younger. Visit tartandaysouth.com for more information.
If you think Spanish is the predominant language spoken in Brazil, then Eight Days is sorely disappointed in you. (If you knew it was Portuguese, you have confirmed our warm and fuzzy feelings about our readers.) The Brazilian-themed Columbia International Festival runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Cantey Building on the S.C. State Fairgrounds. The event features food, performances, a fashion show, a parade of nations and much more. And don’t worry: If you’re mad at Brazil for not having won the World Cup since 2002, there will be plenty of other countries represented, too. Admission is $5 for adults, $1 for kids 6-12 and free for kids 5 and younger. Visit cifonline.org for more information.
The signature fundraiser for Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Walk like MADD is a casual 5K jaunt that donates its proceeds to ambitious initiatives such as deterring inebriated motorists and keeping minors from drinking. There’s no paint or mud involved in this one, but maybe you don’t want all that mess anyway. Walking starts at 2 p.m. in Saluda Shoals park. More info at madd.org.
It’s already sold out, but you might be able to scrounge a ticket somewhere — the Vista Queen Pageant, now in its 16th year, seems worth that kind of effort. Local men don the pumps, wigs and dresses traditional in drag and vie for votes from the crowd. Odds are at least one or two — or all — of these dudes will feel plenty uncomfortable with the situation, which should make it all the more hilarious. The show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets — should more come available — and other information are available at trustus.org.
Nothing goes better with a science lesson than a frosty pint or crafty cocktail. So get on down to Speakeasy in Five Points for the monthly Science Café lecture series that tackles big topics in a casual environment. Today, you’ll hear from Paul Venhovens, an expert on automotive systems, expounding on various issues within his field. The 6 p.m. lecture is free. The drinks, unfortunately, are not. For more info, visit engenuitysc.com.
Remember rolling your eyes during D.A.R.E. and other grade-school programs meant to keep you on the straight and narrow? Well, the Man in the Mirror Youth Panel at City Hall will likely have a greater impact. The Insiders from the Department of Justice, a special group of juveniles who travel the state, will share their stories and encourage children in attendance to make the right choices. Police will be on hand, too, reminding kids of the consequences that await if they get going too far down the wrong path. The 6 p.m. panel is free. Call 545-3100 for more.
Find more things to do at free-times.com/events.
Let us know what you think: Email email@example.com.