2nd Street Fest, Alicia Keys, BlackStar films, and Jerry Garcia tributes in this week’s ‘Things to Do’

Aug. 4 - Aug. 7: The week’s events include a classical concert in N.J, the 2nd Street Festival in Philly, and a Lyle Lovett show in Delaware.

Listen 5:02
Alicia Keys performs during the Platinum Jubilee concert taking place in front of Buckingham Palace, London, Saturday June 4, 2022, on the third of four days of celebrations to mark the Platinum Jubilee. (Humphrey Nemar/Pool photo via AP)

Alicia Keys performs during the Platinum Jubilee concert taking place in front of Buckingham Palace, London, Saturday June 4, 2022, on the third of four days of celebrations to mark the Platinum Jubilee. (Humphrey Nemar/Pool photo via AP)

City sidewalks are hot (literally and figuratively) as Philadelphia showcases three cultural festivals and the highly anticipated return of one of the city’s biggest events, the 2nd Street Festival. There’s a concert to suit any genre preference as artists from Alicia Keys to Run the Jewels take the stage. And sunflowers are in bloom over the next two weekends as Shady Brook Farm hosts its annual Sunflower Festival.


Lyle Lovett and his Large Band

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

Country artist doesn’t quite encompass Lyle Lovett’s career, but it’s a start. The singer/songwriter and four-time Grammy winner has been critically acclaimed since his self-titled 1986 debut. Aside from recording projects across a number of genres including pop, folk, jazz and blues, he also has a “side” career as an actor. Lovett has appeared in the movies “The Player,” “Bastard out of Carolina,” “Angels Sing” and on TV in shows like “The Bridge,” “Castle” and “Mad About You.” In 1993, he became tabloid fodder for his marriage to Julia Roberts, which lasted less than two years. Lovett and his Large Band are touring in support of his latest release “12th of June,” which came out  in May.

New Jersey

Scuba Tooth Fairy Adventure

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

For some reason, sharks are popular in the Delaware Valley — as long as they’re safely contained. At Adventure Aquarium’s Shark Tooth Summer, which goes on through September, you can learn more about the marine predators, enjoy special promotions around the seven-plus shark species housed at the aquarium, and see the scuba tooth fairy, a new attraction.

Arts and Culture

BlackStar Film Festival

Founded by Maori Karmael Holmes, the annual BlackStar Film Festival is now in its 11th year. The festival comes with panels, wellness events, parties, and of course, the films — shorts, docs, and features. Highlights include the feature documentary “Storming Caesar’s Palace” the little-known story of activist Ruby Duncan, who advocated on behalf of female welfare recipients in Las Vegas, and “Jasmine is a Star” about a Minneapolis teen with albinism who aspires to be a model. In conjunction with BlackStar, First Fridays at the Barnes hosts a concert with Omar’s Hat and a screening of “Blackalachia” that includes a post-film chat with its star and director Moses Sumney.

  • What: Cultural event
  • Where: Annenberg Center, 3680 Walnut St., and multiple other venues
  • When: Through Sunday, August 7
  • How much: $5 and up

Adult Swim Festival

Adult Swim is coming to Philadelphia and in a major way. The first annual festival is a three-day event that includes panels, concerts, comedy shows and a block party. Unfortunately, show panels on “Rick and Morty” and other Adult Swim faves have already sold out, but tix for concerts by Tierra Whack, Flo Milli, Bia, Run the Jewels, Hannibal Buress’ musical alter ego Eshu Tune, with Chill Moody and Snacktime, as well as comedians Carmen Christopher, Jo Firestone and Brandon Wardell  are still available.

Overlap: Windgate Wood Arts Residency Exhibit

The Center for Art in Wood celebrates its 25th year of artists-in-residence with an opening exhibit reception showcasing their work. The Windgate Wood arts residency invites six artists in various disciplines – three from Philadelphia – to come together for eight weeks to study, learn from each other and most importantly, create. The works produced include digitally based creations, furniture and multimedia projects. The reception includes a gallery talk, tour, and meet and greet with the artists. The exhibition runs through Sunday, Oct. 23.

  • What: Exhibit opening reception/talk
  • Where: The Center for Art in Wood, 141 N. 3rd St. 
  • When: Friday, Aug. 5, 5:30 – 8 p.m.
  • How much: Free, open to the public



If festivals are your thing, this is your weekend, if you have the stamina to navigate from one to the other. On Sunday, the 2nd Street Festival returns to Northern Liberties with food, music, vendors, and performances by Dirty Soap, Reggae Thunder, Dell-P and Bougie and the Beasts. On Saturday, the Indonesian Festival at Fleisher Memorial from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., celebrates the arts and culture of East Indonesia through music and dance. The Celebrate Asia festival, part of PECO’s series of summer multicultural festivals is at Race St. Pier on Saturday, Aug. 6, from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., and on Sunday, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.mThe ACANA African Festival celebrates African heritage and culture with a performance by Nigerian recording artist Wande Coal. Shady Brook Farm celebrates its annual Sunflower Festival this weekend and next with Instagram-friendly setups, pick-your-own sunflowers, and family-friendly activities, including wagon rides. And in Bethlehem, Musikfest 2022 brings Boyz II Men, Ziggy Marley and Willie Nelson to the burbs through Aug. 14.

  • What: Street and farm festivals
  • Where: Various venues
  • When: Saturday, Aug. 6, Sunday, Aug. 7
  • How much: Free

Outdoor movies

During the pandemic the world rediscovered drive-ins, which remain woefully few and far between even in the state that boasts the oldest continuously operating drive-in in the country. Now that we’re back outside, interest in drive-ins has petered out but outdoor movie screenings are still available. On Friday, Dilworth Park hosts Pictures in the Park with an 8:15 p.m. showing of “Spiderman: No Way Home.”  On Saturday at 8:30 p.mRoosevelt Mall is home to Carside Cinema with a free (with registration) showing of “Moana.” And Questlove’s Oscar-winning “Summer of Soul” comes to Clark Park on Friday at sundown.

  • What: Outdoor movie screenings
  • Where: Various venues
  • When: Friday, Aug. 6, Saturday, Aug. 7
  • How much: Free


The Days Between: Jerry Garcia 80th Birthday Celebration

Iconic Grateful Dead co-founder Jerry Garcia died in 1995, but in the years since he’s been remembered annually during The Days Between. Deadheads celebrate Garcia’s birthday on Aug. 1 and the days until the anniversary of his death on Aug. 9 with musical and other tributes. Ardmore Music Hall is the venue for two of them — a morning show for kids celebrating Garcia’s birthday and an evening show with Splintered Sunlight, a Dead tribute band for the last 25 years. At City Winery on Saturday night, The Englishtown Project will reprise most of the 1977 Grateful Dead concert at Raceway Park in Englishtown, N.J., which also featured the Marshall Tucker Band and New Riders of the Purple Sage.

Alicia Keys

R&B singer/songwriter Alicia Keys established herself in the 90s as part of the neo-soul wave of artists like Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, Musiq and more, while arguably developing more of an enduring pop presence than any of them. Keys and her husband Kasseem “Swizz” Beatz are also two of the most prominent collectors of African American art via the Dean Collection. Among their real estate holdings is the so-called “Iron Man” house, which was featured last year in Architectural Digest. Her latest double CD release “Keys” is arguably her most innovative so far.

Simply Naomi

Naomi Blount Wilson was on her way to a career in music when she was convicted of murder and subsequently sentenced to life in prison. She served 37 years before her sentence was commuted in 2019. Wilson, who had a recording contract with Philadelphia’s Swan Records in the 60s and led the prison choir at Muncy State Prison, will perform in the Fair Chance Beer Garden as part of Eastern State’s Night Tours. Now a recording artist known Simply Naomi, she has a single, “Mello-D,” out now.

  • What: Concert
  • Where: Eastern State Penitentiary, 2027 Fairmount Ave.
  • When: Saturday, Aug. 6, 8 p.m.
  • How much: Free with museum admission

Burning Spear Fan Appreciation Tour 2022

Reggae icon Winston Rodney, better known as Burning Spear, is among the genre’s most acclaimed and respected artists. He can thank Bob Marley for the career assist as the Wailers frontman suggested he start his career with the legendary reggae producer Coxsone Dodd. The rest, as they say, is music history. The 12-time Grammy nominee and winner for Best Reggae Album in 2000 and 2009, Burning Spear retired from touring two decades ago and formed his own label. This year, he told the Jamaica Observer he was returning to the stage for what appears to be a brief Fan Appreciation tour.

  • What: Concert
  • Where: Theater of the Living Arts (moved from the Mann) 334 South St.
  • When: Saturday, Aug. 6, 7 p.m.
  • How much: $49, $50

The Rest

RuPaul Werq the World Tour 2022

If there is anyone who has advanced the conversation on LGBTQ+ rights, it is RuPaul Andre Charles, who brought drag queens to the mainstream via his popular VH1 show “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” The show has aired for fourteen seasons, winning 11 Primetime Emmy Awards and spawning numerous spinoff shows. In 2021, Rupaul became the most awarded Black Emmy winner in history. Now Rupaul and the fabulous queens are hitting the road for a tour where werking, and very likely, twerking, are all a part of the show.

Saturdays just got more interesting.

WHYY is your source for fact-based, in-depth journalism and information. As a nonprofit organization, we rely on financial support from readers like you. Please give today.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal