Weekend Best Bets: August 19-21

Everything you need to know to have a most pleasant Friday, Saturday, and Sunday

Friday, August 19

Invasion of the gymnasts

WHAT: 2011 Visa Championsips
WHERE: Xcel Energy Center
WHEN: 6:30 p.m.
From Wednesday to Saturday, the best gymnasts in the country will descend on downtown St. Paul to compete for a spot on the national team, including past Olympic medal-winners. Consider it your fix between Olympics. Learn more at xcelenergycenter.com

Friday, August 19

Garage dance

WHAT: Offleash Area Neighborhood Garage Tour
WHERE: Weakly/Bennett garage, 7517 Xerxes Ave. N., Brooklyn Park
WHEN: 7 p.m.
Offleash Area dance and theater company holds its annual tour of neighborhood garages, a community-building performance is there ever was one. Shows are scheduled through October at homes throughout the Twin Cities and suburbs. Check their website for locales. Learn more at offleasharea.org

Saturday, August 20

Aria hungry?

WHAT: Alcina’s Isand: A Picnic Operetta
WHERE: Eat Street Community Garden
WHEN: 4 p.m.
Now in its third year, this popular blend of local food and local music presents a variation on a Handel opera in community gardens throughout the Twin Cities, with small plates passed around of local food prepared by former Café Brenda’s chef Nick Schneider. Learn more at mixedprecipitation.org

Saturday, August 20

The Beatles live

WHAT: Teddy Holidays play “Rubber Soul”
WHERE: Bryant-Lake Bowl, Minneapolis
WHEN: 10 p.m.
The Twin Cities’ smartest cover band, fresh off playing Weezer’s blue album all the way through, play the Beatles’ brilliant “Rubber Soul.” Learn more at bryantlakebowl.com

Sunday, August 21

Southern exposure

WHAT: Midwest Brigadoon: All of the State Fair Without the Stick
WHERE: Southern Theater, Minneapolis
WHEN: 7 p.m.
A fundraiser for the beleaguered Southern Theater, built around the premiere of a film shot at last year’s Minnesota State Fair with more than 20 cameras, showing the set-up, the action, and the shutdown, then compiled into the most artistic movie you’ll ever see about the fair. Learn more at southerntheater.org

Sunday, August 21

Lighting the way

WHAT: Japanese Lantern Lighting Festival
WHERE: Marjorie McNeely Conservatory, Como Park, St. Paul
WHEN: 3 p.m.
The popular festival includes performances on the main stage (drumming, flutes) with martial arts, flower arranging, origami, and other activities throughout the grounds. At dusk, the main event takes place. Shuttle buses run from Como Avenue. Learn more at comozooconservatory.org