Picture a Norse god riding a hydroplane, with a country-music soundtrack playing in the background. That’s what this coming weekend would look like if you took the region’s major arts and entertainment events and mashed them together.
Seattle Opera’s “Ring” cycle; the Seafair festival; the Watershed Music Festival — these are just some of the events we’re recommending this weekend. Browse the list below, and if you have more events to suggest to other readers, please add them to the comments thread. Then go out there and have some fun.
1 Watershed Music Festival
Friday-Sunday at the Gorge Amphitheatre, George, Grant County; sold-out (800-745-3000 or Ticketmaster).
Sorry, country fans. The tickets to one of the biggest country music events of the summer are sold out. But we know if we didn’t include this on the list of the weekend’s highlights, we’d be hearing from you. On the lineup: Brad Paisley, Toby Keith, Luke Bryan and many more. If you are lucky enough to have a ticket, don’t miss Owen Smith’s preview. It’s enough to make your cowboy boots start dancing all by themselves.
2 Seafair Festival
Hydros: 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Championship race 4:45 p.m. Sunday, at Stan Sayres Pits and Genesee Park. Free Friday and free all days for military with ID. $10-$40 Saturday-Sunday (206-728-0123 or www.seafair.com.).
A little rain isn’t enough to keep true Northwesterners from the summer’s biggest boat-and-plane bash. Here are the details on the hydro action down at Genesee Park; and we’ve also got some historical background on the festival and an interview with the driver of the Oh Boy! Oberto hydroplane. Dive in.
3 Seattle Opera's 'Ring'
Presented in three cycles of four operas each: Aug, 4, 5, 7 and 9; Aug. 12, 13, 15 and 17; and Aug. 20, 21, 23 and 25, McCaw Hall, Seattle Center; $20-$365 (206-389-7676 or seattleopera.org).
Moving from the high seas to high C’s: Wagner’s four-opera cycle — rarely staged in full — will draw thousands of cultural tourists to Seattle over the next three weeks. It’s an event that happens only every four years at Seattle Opera and there are still a few tickets left. Learn more here.
Now playing at the Seven Gables, 911 N.E. 50th St., Seattle.
This weekend’s big movie releases, “2 Guns” and “The Smurfs 2,” didn’t exactly set the critics on fire, but the documentary “Blackfish” is getting a lot of attention. It’s about the troubled lives of orca whales who are kept in captivity.
5 Lake City Pioneer Days
Salmon bake, noon-6 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Lake City Community Center, 12531 28th Ave. N.E., Seattle; Street Festival entertainment, food vendors, pony rides, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, beer garden opens at noon, Albert Davis Park and along Northeast 125th Street; Vintage Car Show, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday; Kid’s Parade, 6 p.m. Saturday, from 135th Avenue Northeast and Lake City Way; Grand Parade, 7 p.m. Saturday, Lake City Way from 130th Avenue Northeast to 124th Avenue Northeast, Seattle; northseattlechamber.com/pioneer-days.
If you’re looking for a festival experience on a little smaller scale than Seafair, head to Lake City for a salmon bake on Friday and Saturday, plus entertainment, pony rides, a vintage car show and parades on Saturday.