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With Memorial Day weekend behind us, that means we have the whole summer ahead to play.
Whether you are a long-term planner or just looking to the weekend, The Dispatch entertainment staff has you covered.
Why, just this week, we are letting readers know about the outdoor music scene in not only central Ohio, but statewide. Who is performing in the Buckeye State? We have a snapshot of performers and festivals coming in June.
And, of course, we published our Summer Events Guide last weekend, and there's more there to do than most people can get to!
But if you are seeking ideas for things to do this weekend, then check out our list of 10 cool things to do!
To get these ideas in your inbox every week, sign up for the Life in the 614 newsletter.
Picnic With the Pops, more: Columbus Symphony, BalletMet in classical music, dance events
Chris Rock to deliver laughs at Ohio Theatre
Emmy- and Grammy-winning comedian-actor Chris Rock, a former “Saturday Night Live” cast member who has appeared in more than a dozen films including “Grown Ups” and “The Longest Yard,” starred in the fourth season of the FX crime drama “Fargo,” and created the semi-autobiographical sitcom “Everybody Hates Chris," is coming to town. Rock will perform his standup act at 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Ohio Theatre, 39 E. State St. Tickets cost $53.50 to $279. (614-469-0939, www.cbusarts.com)
Brass in the biergarten at Nocterra Brewing
Enjoy a brew while listening to brass music: Members of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra — trumpeters David Duro and Heather Zweifel, horn player Stephanie Blaha, trombonist Jim Albrecht and tuba player Chris Blaha — will perform outdoors at 7 p.m. Thursday at Nocterra Brewing Co., 41 Depot St., Powell. Choose from picnic table seating shared with others, or take lawn chairs or blankets. Guests can buy food from Ray Ray’s Hog Pit Food Truck. Tickets cost $16. (www.promusicacolumbus.org)
A salute to Sondheim by Otterbein Summer Theatre
Otterbein Summer Theatre will pay tribute to the legendary composer-lyricist Stephen Sondheim, who died in November at 91. The university’s summer theater program will launch its season with a staged concert of “Side by Side by Sondheim,” a musical revue showcasing songs from “Company,” “Follies, “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” “A Little Night Music” and other classic Sondheim shows. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at Battelle Fine Arts Center’s Riley Auditorium, 170 W. Park St., Westerville. (614-823-1109, www.otterbein.edu/drama)
Weathervane launches season with '9 to 5, the Musical'
Weathervane Playhouse, Ohio’s longest-running professional summer-stock theater company, will launch its summer season with “9 to 5, the Musical.” The Broadway musical comedy, adapted by composer-lyricist Dolly Parton and author Patricia Resnick from the 1980 movie, focuses on the friendship of three late-1970s female coworkers who plot revenge against a sexist, egotistical and deceptive boss. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 7:30 p.m. June 7-11 at 100 Price Road, Newark. Tickets cost $15 to $37. (740-366-4616, www.weathervaneplayhouse.org)
'Emojiland' musical to bring smiles
The producers of “Emojiland the Musical” have announced that the national tour of the off-Broadway show will close after its opening in Columbus, due in part to complications from the pandemic. Instead of presenting four performances June 3-5 at the Southern Theatre, as initially announced, the musical comedy about a group of emoji archetypes will be performed as a one-night-only event, to be filed for a live-capture of the musical, at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Palace Theatre, 34 W. Broad St. Admission is free, but tickets for the special performance are required and available at Emojiland.com, where VIP packages and seating also will be sold. Refunds are available for tickets sold to the now-canceled Southern Theatre performances, according to the show’s producers.
Literary picnics return with Donte Woods-Spikes
The first Thurber House Summer Literary Picnic of the season on June 8, will feature Columbus storyteller and author Donte Woods-Spikes. In his book “So Long: Unfinished Good-byes with the Children of COVID-19,” Woods-Spikes documented stories he heard from Columbus City schoolchildren during the pandemic. His appearance will be the first of six picnics scheduled this summer on the Thurber House lawn, 77 Jefferson Ave. Tickets range from $5.25 to $41, with higher-priced tickets including a picnic dinner. The event opens at 6 p.m. with the program beginning at 6:30 p.m. (www.thurberhouse.org)
Columbus Taco Fest: Did someone say $2 tacos?
How does a week of tacos sound? The organizers of Columbus Taco Fest have pulled together some local restaurants that will be offering $2 taco specials during the week of June 6 to 11. Restaurants include Taco Nice, Tasty Tacos, Tipsy Tacos, Tortilla, Cazuelo's, multiple location of Local Cantina and more. Taco enthusiasts can also enter an Instagram contest to post pictures of the yummiest tacos in order to win restaurant gift cards. Find a list and map of participating restaurants at columbustacoweek.com.
Water Lantern Festival a peaceful, easy feeling
Relax and enjoy the sight of lanterns drifting over the water in the night at the Water Lantern Festival, from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday at Franklin Park, 1755 E. Broad St. Enjoy food trucks, activities and music early in the evening. Decoration of the lanterns, which are made of rice paper and wood and lighted with LED candles, begins at 8:30 p.m., with lantern launches taking place between 9 and 10 p.m. No on-site parking; off-site parking is located at 440 E. Long St. Tickets start at $25.99. (www.waterlanternfestival.com)
WWE Smackdown to be full of action
Get all the wrestling action you could probably want at the WWE Smackdown at 7:45 p.m. Friday at Value City Arena, West Lane Avenue and Olentangy River Road. World Wrestling Entertainment stars likely including Smackdown women's champion Ronda Rousey, Drew McIntyre, The New Day, and tag team champions the Usos will battle it out arena-style in an evening of high drama, pulsing lights and pyrotechnics. Tickets start at $23. (614-688-3939, www.schottensteincenter.com)
Last chance to see 'Wicked'
If you haven't seen the Broadway in Columbus production of "Wicked," then you should take note: The show run will finish its run here on Sunday. The production looks at the tale from a fresh perspective — another girl, born with emerald-green skin and possessing an extraordinary talent — meets a bubbly blonde who is exceptionally popular. Their initial rivalry turns into the unlikeliest of friendships … until the world decides to call one “good” and the other one “wicked.” Tickets start at $43 at CBusArts Ticket Center (614-469-0939, www.capa.com)
This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Things in Columbus to do this weekend: Chris Rock, WWE, Taco Fest