The Weekend List: The arts and culture guide to Seattle's good life

Amateur dancers schooled by Seattle's top choreographers, tide pool spelunking and the best of Capitol Hill Block Party.
Amateur dancers schooled by Seattle's top choreographers, tide pool spelunking and the best of Capitol Hill Block Party.

* Denotes events that are $15 or less

Strictly Seattle

For the past 3 weeks, dancers of all abilities have immersed themselves in an intensive program at the Velocity dance studios. Now, they’ll show off their hard work in a series of pieces created by their teachers, who happen to be a group of  dynamic choreographers: Zoe Scofield, Pat Graney, Bennyroyce Royon, KT Niehoff, Jody Kuehner, Shannon Stewart, Rosa Vissers and Bryon Carr. Consider this an opportunity to discover a new favorite dancer and/or dancemaker.

Crosscut archive image.

Bennyroyce Royon, the choreographer and founder of Bennyroyce Dance Productions, is one of the dancemakers showing work at Velocity this weekend. Photo: Quinn Batson

If you go: Strictly Seattle, Velocity Dance, July 25 and 26 ($18) – F.D.

Boyhood *

The Richard Linklater film that stole the show at this year’s SIFF is back for a limited run. Winner of the 2014 Golden Space Needle Award for Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actress, Boyhood is a coming-of-age tale unlike no other in cinematic history. Filmed over a period of 12 years with the same cast, 6-year-old Mason grows up — literally — before our eyes. Watch the trailer and feel your eyes well up now.

If you go: Boyhood, Harvard Exit Theatre, Opens July 25 for a limited run. ($8-$10.50) — N.C.

Beach Naturalists *

While our ocean beaches might be too frigid for swimming, they’re prime for nature watching, learning and interacting. Just when I think I’ve seen it all, the Puget Sound tops it with another sighting — sea otters vigorously munching fish off of Alki. Head to Carkeeek, Lincoln Park or Golden Gardens (among others) on Saturdays or Sundays this summer to see the creatures revealed at low tide, learn from passionate and informed volunteer beach naturalists and discover (again) the natural beauty of our area. Look here for a full list of dates and times.

If you go: Seattle Aquarium Beach Naturalists Program, Local beaches through August 11 (FREE) — N.C.

Crown Hill Garage Sale Day *

Yet another garage sale day and probably one of the last of the year! The map’s already a-buzzing with activity and the descriptions of items are in-depth and enticing: a bag of mallard decoys, for one. Make a morning or afternoon of it and stop by Carkeek or Golden Gardens, or — if you don’t hit oil at the sales — I also recommend Value Village at 85th and 15th.

If you go: Crown Hill Garage Sale Day, all around Crown Hill, June 26 from 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. (FREE) — N.C.

Capitol Hill Block Party: Saturday

Capitol Hill’s annual summer blowout is, without a doubt, my favorite music festival. For years now it’s been an ideal blend of big names, local acts and intimate community vibes. The crowd is generally young, but people of all ages attend, and it’s beautiful to see a neighborhood already buzzing with activity pushed toward its artistic and social tipping points. On Saturday, start the day with young soul sensation Ontieno Terry. Then move on to The Dip, another homegrown outfit with serious funk grooves. Later in the afternoon, art rock idol EMA, Seattle rapper Sol and electrofunk ladykiller duo Chromeo are the must-sees.

If you go: Capitol Hill Block Party, Corner of 3rd Avenue and Pike Street, July 26 ($50). — J.S.H. 

Capitol Hill Block Party: Sunday

If I had to skip a day of block party this year, It would be Friday. Maybe because the booking agents know most people have weekends off, the music on Saturday and Sunday starts two hours earlier and the bill is crowded with talent. Sunday is perhaps the most exciting day of the festival, because New York City rap innovator A$AP Rocky has a two-hour set — that’s pretty long for a festival — around 8 p.m. Earlier in the afternoon, hard local rock acts So Pitted, Stickers and Haunted Horses are tearing it up at the Neumos stage. Also, make sure to stop by the mainstage for shoegaze folk auteurs The War On Drugs.

If you go: Capitol Hill Block Party, Corner of 3rd Avenue and Pike Street ($50). — J.S.H.

The Tudor Choir’s Abbey Bach Festival Seattle Concert

The celebrated choir returns from Oregon’s Abbey Bach Festival with a local concert saluting Bach and his predecessors. Bach predecessors, you ask? Why yes, composers such as Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina whose sacred music will lift and transport you in a much different way than the Capitol Hill Block party can.

If you go: The Tudor Choir, Blessed Sacrament Church, July 27 ($20-$30). — F.D.

Denver *

The best experiences at the Tractor Tavern are Americana or country shows. Sometimes, when younger indie rock acts show up, they don’t mesh with the vibe of the venue or the Ballard crowd that it draws. But Denver, a self-described “ramshackle country band” out of Portland, is a perfect fit. The group has the twangy guitar, the tinkling piano, the harmonies and the blessedly straightforward lyrics to bring the house down. Especially those lyrics; hearing about the trials and tribulations of real folks with harmonica in the background is unquestionably therapeutic.

If you go: Denver, Tractor Tavern, July 27 ($8). — J.S.H.

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About the Authors & Contributors

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Joseph Sutton-Holcomb

Joseph is a full-time landscaper, part-time journalist and full time culture junkie discovering the hidden joys of life as a UW graduate in Seattle. When not taking care of plants or writing, he spends his time in the company of good friends enjoying film, music and the great outdoors.