July 16, 2017

Worcester Weekly: Mercantile Center beer festival + more, July 16-22

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Flickr / Quinn Dombrowski

Craft beer -- the wine of New England.

The most fun you’ll have with a calendar of events all week. And you just might learn something, too.

Tuesday, July 18 — “The Two Gentlemen of Verona,” 7-9 p.m., Sprinkler Factory, 38 Harlow St.  Never among Shakespeare’s blockbusters — it was among his first-known plays — “Verona” nonetheless endures as a popular staple for the scores of summer performers who worship at the altar of the Bard.

The Shakespeare Academy @ Stratford’s Alumni Co. adds a “1980’s romantic comedy twist” to the story of “four lovers’ lives thrown into a chaos filled with passionate love, heartbreak, betrayal and forgiveness. And, let’s not forget, an insane amount of laughs.” Suggested donation is $5.

For more information

Wednesday, July 19 — Neighborhood Nature, 1-4 p.m., Elm Park, Park Avenue (between Elm and Highland streets)  In many neighborhoods of Worcester — with their haphazardly stacked three-deckers and overcrowded driveways and one-way streets — the wildest thing you’ll generally find is a flock of precariously perched television satellites hanging for dear life onto windowsills and plastic siding as far as the eye can see.

If you and the kiddos are looking for a little more adventure, then Elm Park is the place to be. Drop in for this free program including “activities, crafts, stories, and nature walks. Learn about the plants and animals that can be found in Worcester through hands-on projects and games.”

For more information

Thursday, July 20 — Summer Craft Beer Festival, 4:30-7:30 p.m., Mercantile Center Plaza, Mercantile Street  The festering Franklin Street building that for years housed the infamous Paris Cinema met its long-awaited demolition crew last week in preparation to convert the prime piece of real estate into a fancy, new beer garden.

Perhaps inspired by the latest buzzworthy downtown development, folks at the Mercantile Center planned a one-day “after-work beer garden” of their own, featuring a triumvirate of popular and award-winning city breweries — Wormtown Brewery, 3cross Brewing Co. and Flying Dreams Brewing Co. — along with Greater Good Imperial Brewing Co. and food trucks including Uncle E’s BBQ Express.

Art Simas / For Worcester Sun

Dave Howland, a Worcester Academy grad, traded in his basement for a Cambridge Street location to build 3cross Brewing Co.

Check out our profiles on 3cross Brewing Co. | Flying Dreams

BirchTree Bread Company and Worcester Railers HC, too, will join in on the fun. Josh Briggs is expected to perform. Rain date is Friday, July 21.

For more information

Saturday, July 22 — Worcester Bravehearts vs. Brockton Rox, 7:05 p.m., Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field, 1 College St.  A relative parity has descended upon the Futures League as no teams (as of July 14) had win-loss records more than six games above or below .500. In other words, the difference between first and last place is slim with the all-star break looming and the time to jockey for playoff position on the horizon.

The two-time champion Bravehearts (16-18) are in the unfamiliar position of having to fight their way up from the bottom of the pack. On the bright side, 10 of their final 16 games will be at the friendly confines of Fitton Field. First baseman Greg Kocinski was riding an 11-game hitting streak, hiking his average to .342 (38-of-111) to go along with a team-best 10 doubles, 7 home runs and 23 RBI. Tickets start at $6.

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Saturday, July 22 — Comedian Jordan Raybould, 9 p.m.-midnight, Beatnik’s, 433 Park Ave.  Beatnik’s bills itself as an oasis for the Average Joe (or Jane — hey, it’s your identity) trying to enjoy a night out in the city without crashing headlong into “the scene.” If I’m an up-and-coming comedian stopping in from New York City I might want a little bit of “the scene” to fill out my audience, but the distinct atmosphere of Beatnik’s is a decent consolation prize.

Raybould is an overachiever who captained the Yale University soccer team. His LinkedIn page even says he was an Eagle Scout. While this does not guarantee he’s funny, you have to believe it takes a legit sense of humor to be a millennial Boy Scout. Cover is $5.

For more information

Save the date!

Tuesday, Aug. 1 — National Night Out, 5:30 p.m.-sundown, Fuller Family YMCA Park, 104 Murray Ave.  Here at the Sun, we advocate for getting out of the house every night, but if that level of activity is not in your particular wheelhouse, then tonight’s your night! National Night Out began in 1984 as a way to bring the community, police and other public safety officials closer together. This is the 22nd annual Worcester event.

In its first year about 2.5 million people in 23 states participated; this year some 38 million people in tens of thousands of communities across all 50 states are expected to step out and speak up against crime in their neighborhoods. Free family-friendly activities, vendor and resource tables and more.

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