Lorenzo Roberts plays King Richard II in Santa Cruz Shakespeare's production of "RII."
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)
City Life

BOLO Best Bets: Final weekend for Shakespeare and comedy fest, plus live music and ... reptiles?

Hi friends,

Harsh life lesson 101: Summer’s got to end sometime. This final weekend of August is a good time to catch up on some things that might be screaming at you from your to-do list. Most notably, it’s the final weekend for Santa Cruz Shakespeare‘s summer season. Earlier this week, SCS announced its plans for next summer, so there’s a ton of optimism and energy in the air at The Grove at DeLaveaga. “The Agitators” and “RII” have one more weekend left. Also, be sure to get out and support the Santa Cruz Comedy Festival, in its third and final weekend at Laurel Park in downtown Santa Cruz. If music is calling you, the brilliant Neko Case is visiting The Rio, and it’ll be great to catch up with locally born rising country star Jesse Daniel. Then on to a promising September.

— Wallace Baine

Lookout Santa Cruz’s BOLO (Be On the Lookout) calendar is “your place to go for things to do” in Santa Cruz County.

See our full BOLO calendar listings for events in Santa Cruz here. And as if that isn’t enough, we have you covered for all the MAJOR events coming up into the next year with Down The Line, a listing assembled by Wallace Baine that’s your key to getting tickets before they sell out. Be sure to follow BOLO on Instagram, too!

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Best Bets is presented by Santa Cruz Community Credit Union, CineLux Theatres and Santa Cruz County Chamber of Commerce.

Now, here’s what Team BOLO thinks you should know for the weekend and beyond:

(Click category headers for full BOLO listings in that category.)

THEATER

Lorenzo Roberts plays King Richard II in "RII" and Patty Gallagher plays Susan B. Anthony in "The Agitators."
Lorenzo Roberts plays King Richard II in “RII” and Patty Gallagher plays Susan B. Anthony in “The Agitators.”
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

THIS WEEKEND
“The Agitators”: Can it be that Santa Cruz Shakespeare is already at the end of its comeback post-pandemic season? In its final weekend, SCS wraps up with Mat Smart’s two-character play “The Agitators,” an evocative historical dramatization of the real-life decades-long, up-and-down friendship between 19th-century civil-rights icons Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony, starring, respectively, SCS veterans Allen Gilmore and Patty Gallagher. Performances this weekend include Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m., and a closing night performance Sunday at 7 p.m.

THIS WEEKEND
“RII”: Santa Cruz Shakespeare heads into the final weekend of its triumphant post-pandemic season. The Shakespearean offering at SCS this summer is Jessica Kubzansky’s smart adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Richard II,” titled “RII.” The play, using Shakespeare’s own words, converts the Bard’s play into a three-actor showcase, highlighting today’s relevance of the story of the ill-fated King Richard. This weekend’s performances include Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 8 p.m. and a closing performance on Sunday at 1 p.m.

— Wallace Baine

LIVE MUSIC

Neko Case.
(Handout)

THURSDAY
Neko Case: So often many of the most intriguing musical artists are those who’ve had to make the journey from the energy and angst of punk rock to the wistfulness of country, which is exactly the path of this veteran singer/songwriter who arose from the Pacific Northwest to become an underappreciated siren both as a solo artist and with the band New Pornographers. Her smoky, sometimes lush vocal style is perfect for the longing and bittersweetness in her material. Neko plays live at The Rio Theatre on Thursday. Opening is AC Newman.

SATURDAY
The Coffis Brothers: Kellen and Jamie Coffis are brothers, co-songwriters, and the frontmen for the band that bears their name. The Coffis boys are Santa Cruz rootstock, from a prominent musical family in the San Lorenzo Valley who have been at the top of the local folk-rock heap for more than a decade now. Seeing them wring out those brother harmonies on their original songs at a club in the neck of the woods where they grew up is a local music lover’s rite of passage. They play Felton Music Hall on Saturday. Opening is the Good Bad.

THURSDAY, SEPT. 2
Jesse Daniel: Just as he says in his song “Son of the San Lorenzo,” this young country singer/songwriter was shaped by his growing up near Ben Lomond, where he “ate blackberries right off the vine,” as he sings. Despite the bucolic trappings, Daniel’s story has had its share of travails, as he’s fought back from almost getting consumed by weeds, booze and pills. Having gotten out of town, traveled the country, and ended up in Texas to record his latest country record, “Beyond These Walls,” Daniel comes back to his old stomping grounds. This could be a special night, for a special artist. He plays Felton Music Hall next Thursday.

— Wallace Baine

Since May 21, the Midtown Fridays Block Party has brought fresh life into the parking lot located at 1111 Soquel Ave.,...

COMEDY

Chris Estrada.
(Handout)

SATURDAY
Chris Estrada headlines Santa Cruz Comedy Festival: Voted one of Time Out Los Angeles’ Top 10 Comics to Watch in 2018, Chris Estrada headlines the third and final weekend of the Santa Cruz Comedy Festival, hosted by DNA’s Comedy Lab outdoors at Laurel Park. Estrada grew up in South Central and Inglewood and is currently co-writing and starring in a new Hulu series about his life called “Punk Ass Bitch.”

SATURDAY
Comedy Festival Afterparty: All six headliners from the Santa Cruz Comedy Festival will perform at Greater Purpose Brewing Company following Saturday’s event. Attendees must be 16 or older and fully vaccinated.

— Haneen Zain

BOOKS & LECTURES

Journalist and writer Kat Chow
(Handout)

MONDAY
Kat Chow: NPR listeners and podcast lovers might recognize the name Kat Chow, a well-known journalist heard on “Code Switch,” “Pop Culture Happy Hour” and other outlets. Chow has released a memoir, titled “Seeing Ghosts.” In the new book, Chow explores the story of her mother, who died when Chow was only 13, and her father, who reared her alone from that point. The book is being praised for its insights into grief and its lingering aftereffects. Chow talks with novelist R.O. Kwan in a virtual online event presented live by Bookshop Santa Cruz. Things get started at 6 p.m.

— Wallace Baine

RECREATION

A flyer for the Santa Cruz Pride Picnic
(Handout)

SUNDAY
Santa Cruz Pride Picnic: Join the Diversity Center of Santa Cruz for a picnic at DeLaveaga Park on Sunday with food trucks and live performances — with additional activities for all ages. Because of the fairly small number of parking spaces, attendees are encouraged to bike, carpool or walk if possible to this celebration of diversity and inclusion.

— Max Chun

VISUAL ARTS

SJ Hoisington's work "Under One Roof: Aspect #63, The Trump Years, 2021"
(Handout)

ONGOING
“Adaptations” at Cabrillo Gallery: Cabrillo Gallery is celebrating the beginning of the new school year with “Adaptations: Cabrillo Art, Photography & Art History Staff & Faculty Exhibition.” The online show features more than 30 artists working in a wide range of media and showcases the many talents of Cabrillo educators and staff. The show runs through Sept. 24, online only.

SUNDAY
Slime Time at the Santa Cruz MAH: The Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History presents a slime workshop for kids, inspired by its current exhibition “The Art of the Santa Cruz Speed Wheel.” Spend the afternoon getting crazy with slime and playing games while making art and checking out the museum. You can book tickets online in advance — $15 for the general public, $10 for members. Includes MAH admission.

— Laurel Bushman

FESTIVALS

The Sugar Jane Band
(Handout)

FRIDAY
Sugar Jane Band at Midtown Block Party: Every Friday in the heart of Midtown, a parking lot is transformed into a venue filled with local artists, food vendors and new performers. This week, Midtown hosts the Sugar Jane Band for its final August event. The female trio performs contemporary music with an Americana/roots flair, with their sound best described as a convergence of soul, roots and country-pop, influenced by traditional genres.

— Haneen Zain

KIDS & FAMILY

A man holds a large snake
(Handout)

FRIDAY-SUNDAY
Pet Shop Santa Cruz Reptile Event: If you or anyone you know happens to be a reptile lover, make sure to head over to Pet Shop Santa Cruz on Friday through Sunday for an afternoon of pet viewing, photo booth opportunities and more. If you’ve been considering bringing home a new pet, this could be the event for you.

— Max Chun

FILM

Movie poster for "Erin Brockovich"
(Handout)

WEDNESDAY
Cinema Chaminade: “Erin Brockovich”: Cinema Chaminade is back for one more evening of food, wine, film and views. “Erin Brockovich,” one of Steven Soderbergh’s first successful Hollywood films, is set to be the final screening of the summer. Don’t miss this last chance to enjoy a quality film with food, wine ... and did we mention the view?

— Max Chun

FOOD & DRINK

A flyer for Food Truck Friday
(Handout)

FRIDAY
Food Truck Friday at Skypark: The sea of food trucks returns to Skypark in Scotts Valley — with a beer garden, Speakeasy 3 performing live, and entertainment by comedians from the Santa Cruz Comedy Festival.

FRIDAY
Sip, Savor and Sway at Stockwell Cellars: Every Friday, Stockwell Cellars invites a different food truck and new musical talent to feed and entertain guests at the vineyard. This week, enjoy a glass or bottle of wine while listening to live music performed by the Mike Hadley Band accompanied by Asian-inspired fare prepared by Drunk Monkeys food truck.

— Haneen Zain

HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF BOLO

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