9 Things To Do in Cincinnati This Weekend (April 1-3)

This weekend promises tons of beer, butterflies and some spring blooms.

click to enlarge A previous Cincy Beerfest - Photo: Byron Photography
Photo: Byron Photography
A previous Cincy Beerfest

Friday, April 1

Cincy Beerfest at Duke Energy Convention Center
The 14th-annual Cincy Beerfest is finally ready to tap some kegs and roll out the barrel. Hundreds of local and regional craft beers from 130 breweries will be featured over the three-day beer extravaganza, turning the Duke Energy Convention Center into a massive beer hall, complete with live entertainment, vendors, wine and cocktails for non-beer drinkers and a special discount for designated drivers. Tickets include commemorative mugs and access for Friday and Saturday sessions. Early admission tickets available.7:30-11 p.m. April 1; 1-4:30 p.m. or 7:30-11 p.m. April 2. $50 or $60 day-of; $90-$95 connoisseur (includes 25 beer sample tickets, a souvenir snifter glass, a special VIP area with appetizers and bigger beers, a private bathroom and early access); $25 designated driver. 525 Elm St., Downtown, cincybeerfest.com.

Kishi Bashi at Madison Theater
Has it really been a decade since Kaoru Ishibashi — better known via his performing name Kishi Bashi — released his full-length debut, 151a, a dense, richly layered effort inspired by everyone from The Beach Boys and Steve Reich to Animal Collective and Sufjan Stevens? A classically trained violinist who studied at the Berklee College of Music, Ishibashi initially sharpened his Pop chops as a contributor to songs by the likes of Sondre Lerche, Regina Spektor and of Montreal. Kishi Bashi’s longtime label, Joyful Noise Recordings, is celebrating the 10th anniversary of 151a with an expanded reissue of the album that includes demo versions of each song. The corresponding tour — which stops by Madison Theater — will feature Ishibashi and his band running through the album in full while also sprinkling in selected tunes from the rest of his discography. 8 p.m. doors  April 1. $23 advance; $25 door. 730 Madison Ave., Covington, madisontheater.com.

Galileo Galilei at CCM
Philip Glass’s opera Galileo Galilei is now onstage at CCM. Dubbed the father of modern science by Albert Einstein, Galileo was acclaimed throughout Renaissance Italy as a leading astronomer and mathematician, as well as the inventor of the first timepieces and telescopes. He ran into trouble with the Catholic Church’s Roman Inquisition in 1616, when he was forced to recant his theory of heliocentrism — the earth revolving around the sun. Galileo maintained his silence as well as his devotion to the Catholic faith but in 1633, he was again tried for heresy with harsher consequences: his works were forbidden to be published and he was condemned to house arrest for the rest of his life. The opera opens in 1642 with a blind Galileo on his deathbed, recalling his life through 10 brief scenes that run backward in time. Read CityBeat's feature about the production at citybeat.com. Through April 3. $39.50. Patricia Corbett Theater, CCM Village, Clifton, ccm.uc.edu/onstage.html.

Zoo Blooms at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
Spring has sprung and the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is about to burst into a riot of color during Zoo Blooms. Each April, the grounds of the zoo come alive with one of the largest tulip displays in the Midwest, along with other blossoming plants. Gaze in awe at the massive assortment of floral varieties, including daffodils, hyacinths, flowering trees, shrubs and other spring bulbs. With all the flowers, animals aren’t the only beauties you can find at the zoo. April 1-30. Free with zoo admission. 3400 Vine St., Avondale, cincinnatizoo.org.

Saturday, April 2

Red Dog's “Barks, Bunnies, & Brews” at Woodburn Brewing
The only thing better than drinking some suds with your best furry buds is raising money for Cincinnati Animal CARE while you imbibe. Visit Woodburn Brewing for Red Dog's Barks, Bunnies, & Brews, where you and your doggo can take some photos with the Easter Bunny, participate in an Easter egg scavenger hunt and then shop local pet vendors for new treats, toys, art and everything else a doting dog parent could hope to find. One dollar from every pint you purchase goes toward Cincinnati Animal CARE, Hamilton County's humane society and shelter. Noon-3 p.m. April 2. $10 for scavenger hunt and professional photo.  2800 Woodburn Ave., East Walnut Hills, facebook.com.

The Cabaret's 11th Anniversary and Last Call Party
The Cabaret and Below Zero Lounge are closing in April as bar owners eye retirement (they'll be keeping their Northside bar Tillie's open). To celebrate 11 years of excellent drag shows, the Cabaret is hosting a last call party on April 2. Table reservations are available online and strongly encouraged in advance as there is no standing room. 10 p.m. April 2. Free admission, but bring tip money (or tip digitally). 1122 Walnut St., Over-the-Rhine, cabaretcincinnati.com.

Life Is Drag at Wave Pool
Life Is Drag is an ongoing project that captures the exuberant and unignorable personalities of alt-drag performers challenging gender norms with expressive, individual acts. From artist Rachel Rampleman, this Wave Pool exhibit features monitors screening video portraits of performers as well as a wall of more than 200 video stills. Rampleman describes alt-drag as “spooky/goth drag, monster-y presenting drag and usually still drag queens. If traditional drag equals RuPaul’s Drag Race, alt-drag equals Boulet Brothers Dragula.” The art includes the entire spectrum of genders, regardless of how the performer identifies, and the fluidity of gender and radical self expression are the focal points. Read an interview with Rampleman at citybeat.com. Gallery hours noon-5 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday. Life Is Drag is on view through April 30. Wave Pool, 2940 Colerain Ave., Camp Washington, wavepoolgallery.org.

Sunday, April 3

Butterflies of the Nile at Krohn Conservatory
The beauty and mystery of Ancient Egypt is descending on Cincinnati's Krohn Conservatory — or at least its butterflies are. Krohn has announced the theme for its super-popular annual butterfly show: Butterflies of the Nile. A description provided by Cincinnati Parks (which oversees Krohn) says the floral exhibit will be "specifically designed to show just how lush and inviting the gardens of ancient Egypt could be." Design elements have been lifted from the art found in Egyptian tombs and temples and call to mind imagery like "orchards, palms and fish ponds with lotus plants." This show requires a timed ticket; only 100 spots are available for each one-hour interval. Through June 19. $10 adults; $7 children; free for ages 4 and under. 1501 Eden Park Drive, Eden Park, krohn.ticketspice.com.

Steel Magnolias at Playhouse in the Park
This classic Southern tale of friendship, strength and loss is onstage at the Playhouse in the Park. As described by the theater, “A tight-knit group of Louisiana women gather regularly to bond, dish and offer advice on everything from motherhood and marriage to tragedy and loss.” Favorite characters from the 1989 film (based on a 1987 play) include Truvy, the salon owner; her timid assistant, Annelle; the grumpy Ouiser; and Shelby, who is a new mom struggling with complications from type 1 diabetes. Through April 17. Tickets start at $35. Playhouse in the Park, 962 Mt. Adams Circle, Mount Adams, cincyplay.com.

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