First and foremost, there wouldn’t be an opportunity for us all to kick back and barbecue this three-day weekend if it wasn’t for the brave men and women who’ve died for our country. Services and parades commemorating their lives and service abound throughout the East End this weekend. You can find a parade near you in our Memorial Day listings, online here.
Community Spelling Bee at Jamesport Meeting House
This year’s list of words to spell at the second annual Community Spelling Bee to benefit the Jamesport Meeting House will be “kinder and gentler” than last year’s list, “but still a challenge,” according to the event’s organizer. Last year, Riverhead High School Latin teacher Jeff “Doc” Greenberger waged logophilic carnage on the assembled masses — our account of the event is online here. Come by to cheer on the spellers beginning at 7:30 p.m. tonight. More information is online here.
Strangemen & Co. Take over Guild Hall
This season, Strangemen & Co., a collaboration of artists founded by actors James Ortiz and Jason Ralph, takes up residence in the John Drew Theater as they work on their next project. Hot on the heels of their critically acclaimed, sold-out run of The Woodsman at 59E59 Theaters, Strangemen & Co. present a free production of the “Thirteen Clocks,” inspired by James Thurber’s novel, on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Guild Hall in East Hampton.
Director Will Gallacher’s adaptation will feature six actors portraying the aimless, down-on-their luck denizens of a small-town bar, who, one by one, using only their imaginations and the mundane objects around them, will bring a world of fantasy to vivid and thrilling life. More information is online here.
Also in the theatrical world this weekend, Hampton Theatre Company’s production of “Hay Fever” opens this weekend, while the North Fork Community Theatre’s production of “Camelot” runs for two more weeks.
The Beacon’s full theater listings are online here.
National Book Award-Winning Poetry and Montauk History
Poet Mark Doty reads from his new poetry collection, “Deep Lane,” published by Norton, at Canio’s Books in Sag Harbor on Saturday at 5 p.m. Mark Doty is a poet and memoirist, and the winner of the National Book Award for Poetry in 2008. More information is online here.
The Montauk Library in celebrating the release of “Montauk”, the library’s new book in the Images of America series, on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. There will be a talk and pictorial presentation followed by Q & A with Montauk Library archivist and author, Robin Strong. More information is online here. The Beacon’s full literary listings are online here.
An Afternoon at the Watermill Center with the Shinnecock Nation
Shinnecock Nation member Shane Weeks, an upcoming artist-in-residence at The Watermill Center, will give a workshop Saturday afternoon at the Watermill Center on the craft and culture of native dream catchers. Though the dream catcher has been a widespread Native American commodity for centuries, few know of its origins. In the first half of this workshop, Shane Weeks will shed light on the origins of the dream catcher while leading participants in the art of constructing their own.
The second half of this workshop will introduce Shinnecock dance practices. Members of the Shinnecock Nation will perform traditional and contemporary dances, while presenting on the history behind these choreographies and answering questions.
The afternoon-long event begins at 1 p.m. with a tour of the Watermill Center’s grounds, and concludes with a reception ending at 6 p.m. More information is online here.
Paint Riverhead’s Main Street
East End Arts hosts their annual Community Mosaic Street Painting Festival on Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. in downtown Riverhead. The event is a Memorial Day Weekend tradition, where families and friends enjoy the creative spirit together. Join all the artists, musicians, and lovers of the arts, young and old, who gather on the grounds of East End Arts and along the Peconic River for this day-long celebration of the arts, centering around the Street Painting Festival, fashioned after the Italian street painters “I Madonnari”, a street chalk art form dating back to the 16th century, as well as activities and entertainment for everyone. Street painting squares are sponsored by businesses, families, and individuals, and are used as a canvas for inspirations in chalk. More information is online here.
Art Openings Abound
Saturday is The day for art openings around the Twin Forks, and nowhere seems more hopping this weekend than downtown East Hampton — you could spend the entire evening gallery hopping within steps of Newtown Lane.
The Lawrence Fine Art Gallery on Newtown Lane will open its summer schedule on Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m. with “Hard Edge: Work by Sen2 and Reso.” Both are well-known graffiti artists, Sen2 here in America and Reso in Germany, who have been working toward a graffiti-abstract fusion. More information is online here.
The Eric Firestone Gallery on Newtown Lane also hosts an opening for “Womanhouse,” works by 23 female artists, on Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. The original 1972 Womanhouse project was organized by Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro, who founded the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) Feminist Art Program. This show references past precedents of feminist art, installation, performance, and ideology, presenting the expanded visual language that has resulted from a more inclusive art world, shaped in part by the social movements of the 1970s. More information is online here.
Tripoli Patterson’s new East Hampton gallery presents Yung Jake: Twisted Metal III, a solo exhibition featuring new works by Yung Jake. with an opening reception on Saturday, May 23 from 6 to 8 p.m. Twisted Metal III brings together a selection from Yung Jake’s works on metal series. Motifs have been distorted, manipulated and applied in the form of vinyl wrap to the surface of found scrap metal, resulting in a present-day readymade that embraces both the digital world and conceptual art, while illuminating the overlooked, discarded artifacts of our culture. More information is online here.
Also on Saturday evening in East Hampton, Vered Gallery hosts an opening reception for Boaz Vaadia’s sculptures from 9 to 11 p.m. Boaz creates his sculptures in bolted and glued layers of slate and bluestone, materials used to build sidewalks, roofs and windowsills that he began salvaging from construction sites in Manhattan’s SoHo district, where he had his first studio many years ago. More information is online here.
The Beacon’s full arts listings are online here.
The B-52s are all over the East End this weekend. The groovy dance band takes the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center by storm on Saturday night at 8 p.m. and then heads over to Amagansett to play The Stephen Talkhouse on Sunday at 8 p.m.
Also of note this weekend, the HooDoo Loungers return to the Parrish Art Museum for the museum’s kickoff to its Friday night summer dance series, fantastic young bluesman Rob Europe plays at Lieb Cellars in Cutchogue on Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m.
The Beacon’s full music listings are online here.
If you need to get away from the crushing mass of people on the East End this weekend, there are plenty of opportunities to explore the natural world here too. The Beacon’s full nature listings are online here.
If none of the above events whet your whistle, you can peruse The Beacon’s entire events calendar online here.