An always family-friendly atmosphere awaits at Fondren After 5.

By Sherry Lucas

The sap’s rising and the creativity is coming out. With spring in full force this side of Easter, it’s time to kick up your heels, spruce up the place and embrace some outdoor action.

The welcome return of Fondren After 5 can handle all those aims, with the sort of socializing, street buzz and art outlook that’ll refresh your whole outlook. Maybe even your walls, too.

Zoo Brew Friday and especially NatureFEST at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science provide the fresh air promise of spring at its best. At NatureFEST, family fun abounds, so tear yourself and your family away from the screen and find out about all the cool stuff you’re missing on the museum grounds and trails. Me? I’m looking forward to an onsite Bio-Blitz!

A St. Dominic Ladies Luncheon serves up Women’s Health, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday at River Hills Club, part of the $25,000 Women’s USTA Challenger week. Sign up at catholiccharitiesjackson.org.

Hear Grant Terry Wednesday night at Soul Wired Cafe. Live Music & wine specials from 4-6 p.m. It’s free until 7:30 p.m.

Enjoy a showcase of artists who are part of the Mississippi Arts Commission’s Visual Artist Fellowship Grant program, featured in the art exhibit “A World Away” now on view at the Mississippi Library Commission, 3881 Eastwood Drive in Jackson. Works by Southaven painter Roger Allan Cleaves, Jackson painter Amelia Key and Starkville ceramic artist Robert Long are featured through April 26.

Get a fresh look for spring at the Peter Millar Trunk Show, 10 a.m. Thursday and Friday at Great Scott.

Join the cool artistic juncture of the exhibit “White Gold” by Thomas Sayre, with a performance of “…to me from the earth…,” composter D.J. Sparr’s musical setting inspired by the poem “Mi Historia” by David Dominguez, with soprano Aundi Marie Moore and Mississippi Symphony Orchestra musicians. Performances are 7 p.m. Thursday and 4 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $25; find links at msorchestra.com or msmuseumart.org.

Soprano Aundi Marie Moore is featured in performances at the Mississippi Museum of Art Thursday and Sunday. Image: Mississippi Museum of Art

First Thursday Book Talks at St. James Episcopal Church, 11:45 a.m. Thursday, spotlights “The Mississippi Book of Quotations” by David Crews, with a chance, too, to enjoy Ms. Joyce’s Famous Meat & Three Buffet. Choice words and a choice lunch — is there a better combo?

At 5 p.m., Fondren After 5 at The Flamingo: Sipp and Sauce, continues the Happy Hour vibe there with beers and music, but for something extra special, a $5 ticket gets you access to all-you-can-eat chicken wings and champagne. The partnership with The Flamingo, Sipp and Sauce and The Roguish Gent podcast aims for a classy hot mess occasion that’s fun for all. Find a ticket link at sippandsauce.splashthat.com.

Fondren After 5 in the Downtown Fondren Historic District brings that spring-a-ding revelry right back in our neighborhood with art, live music, restaurant specials, merchant open houses, kid-friendly fun, and I’m betting all your favorite neighbors, too. Scout out activities on Duling Avenue, around Fondren Corner, in Rainbow Plaza, Hops & Habanas and Cups.

Artist Andy Young opens his Galloway Gallery & Gardens to the public, 5 p.m Thursday, at 3412 Galloway Ave., just a few blocks from the Fondren After 5 action. Browse the variety of artworks for sale, plus get a look at Young’s other passion outdoors in the garden.

Enjoy artist Andy Young’s Galloway & Gardens, Thursday. Image: Andy Young

A Spring Art Show, 5 p.m. Thursday at Interiors Market, features works by Lisa Paris, Pryor Buford Lampton, Bob Tompkins, Lina Ishee, Susan Ingram, Lyn Isonhood, Beth Dean, Lorrie Drennan and Andrew Bucci. Don’t leave ‘em hanging — buy some and take them home!

Continue an art-centric evening at Fischer Galleries, where a combo opening reception welcomes “The Farm,” new paintings by Martha Ferris, paired with modern jewelry by Shelby Ferris Fitzpatrick, 5-7 p.m. Thursday.

Paintings by Martha Ferris are showcased at Fischer Galleries. Image: Fischer Galleries

The Mississippi Museum of Art’s 2018 Spring Benefit, “There’s No Place Like Home,” 7-10 p.m. Friday in the museum’s Trustmark Grand Hall, promises a magical evening that celebrates the museum’s 40-year “ruby” anniversary with cocktails, hors-d’oeuvres, live and silent auctions and music by that always incredible Jackson band, The Vamps. Individual tickets are $100; visit msmuseumart.org.

The Mississippi Museum of Art’s Spring Benefit is Friday. Image: Mississippi Museum of Art

Join Outer Core at And Gallery, 7-10 p.m. Friday for a night of acoustic free-improvisational and concept-based chamber music. It’s $5 at the door and free for gallery members.

The U.S. Tennis Association (USTA) Women’s Challenger 20th Anniversary Party is 6-8:30 p.m. Friday at River Hills Club, 3600 Ridgewood Road, with tickets available at the door.

Hard-touring Little Rock band deFrance spreads the gospel of rock and roll from the stage at Martin’s Friday night. Their modern take on classic rock suits a Southern ear and the band’s technical prowess and pure sound have earned support spots with ZZ Top, Whiskey Myers, Robert Randolph and more. Doors open at 9 p.m. for the 10 p.m. show.

DeFrance performs Friday night at Martin’s. Image: Brian Chilson

Zoo Brew 2018 at the Jackson Zoo has been postponed until May 18 due to weather concerns. The annual event offers a wild ride across an array of craft beers — more than 200 from Capital City Beverages and homebrewers from around the stage, plus signature cocktails from Cathead Vodka and Fondren Public. VIP tickets, $70, offer early festival entry at 5 p.m. plus food and drinks in the VIP section while supplies last. General admission tickets are $40 advance (jacksonzoo.org), $45 day of event and $20 designated driver.

Unleash your wild side again at NatureFEST, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Mississippi Museum of Natural. The popular event offers a ton of nature-centric fun, including BioBlitz opportunities to a magic show, behind-the-scenes tours, a live reptile show, fish feeding with a SCUBA diver, yard games, Wildlife Wonders Animal Adventure Show, expo booths, bubbleology, a fossil dig and so much more! It’s all included with museum admission or membership. Find details at mdwfp.com.

Terry Vandeventer brings his Living Reptile Museum to NatureFEST Saturday. Image: Ginger Vandeventer

Seeing kids play never sounded so good. Turn up and tune in for a Fondren Guitars & Fondren School of Music Spring Recital, 8:30 a.m. Saturday at Fondren Guitars, 607 Fondren Place. First set starts at 9 a.m.

Have a flag-waving, drum-beating, bang-up of a good time Friday and Saturday at the Mississippi Indoor Association Percussion — Color Guard Championships at the Mississippi Coliseum. The fun starts at 5:30 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday. Tickets are $12 at the coliseum box office and ticketmaster.com.

The 8th annual Hot Diggity Dog 5K & Walk, 8 a.m. Saturday at the Mississippi School for the Deaf and Blind, 1253 Eastover Drive, raises money for Gallant Hearts nonprofit for the training of guide dogs. Onsite registration and packet pick up is 7 a.m. Register in advance at active.com.

The 10th-anniversary edition of the Ridgeland Fine Arts Festival comes to Renaissance at Colony Park Saturday. The festival showcases some of America’s finest artists and allows patrons to mingle with the artists and talk with them about their influences, media and methods. It’s really a whole weekend of fun, though: the Sante South Wine Festival (more on that below), Fleet Feet’s “Run Now Wine Later” and Ridgeland’s OBO (One Behind the Other) Tandem Cycling Rally.

The Writer’s Circle hosted by Funmi “Queen” Franklin, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Saturday at Kundi Compound, 256 E. Fortification, is a gathering of writers of all backgrounds, for a program by guest filmmaker/author/playwright Maximus Wright of Phoenix Rising Entertainment. There’s no admission fee.

Santé South Wine Festival returns to Renaissance at Colony Park on Saturday. The grand tasting begins at 7:30 p.m. (VIP tickets are sold out). A showcase of premier wines are poured by Vintners from around the world and paired with some of Mississippi’s most succulent culinary delights. The festival benefits Alzheimer’s Mississippi, Inc. Buy tickets here.

Sante South Wine Festival is Saturday at Renaissance at Colony Park. Image: Tony Perkins

World-class drummer and blues torch-carrying guitarist Cedric Burnside takes Mississippi music to the next level, in concert Saturday night at Martin’s, with Trenton Ayers opening. Doors open at 9 p.m., and the show’s at 10 p.m.

Sunday Nite Slow Jams, 6-9 p.m. Sunday at Offbeat, deliver jazz, pop, soul and more in an all-vinyl set by DJ Young Venom, with vibes curated by The Flamingo and Offbeat. It’s a $5 cover.

Grab a seat for Challenge Entertainment’s Live Trivia, 7:30 p.m. Monday at The Pig & Pint. Play for fun and prizes.

Pull up a chair for the Murder Mystery Dinner 6 p.m. Monday at Char — an interactive dinner theater performance by the Detectives Dinner Theatre. It’s $49 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Seating and cocktail service is at 6 p.m. with dinner and the show at 7 p.m. Email brittany.moses@amerigo.net to reserve a spot.

Dynamic progressive rock band Papadosio’s spring tour hits Jackson and Martin’s Tuesday night, with music merges new age technology with mesmerizing instrumentation, with Bluetech opening. Doors open at 7 p.m. and show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $17 at ticketfly.com. It’s an 18 and older show.

Papadosio performs Tuesday at Martin’s. Image: Papadosio

Next Wednesday’s gallery talk, 11:30 a.m. to noon April 11 at the Mississippi Museum of Art highlights women artists such as Marie Hull, Ruth Miller, Gwen Magee and more, with “Independent women: Passion and Practice in Mississippi’s Artists.”

Sherry Lucas, a features writer in Jackson for the last 34 years, is here on Wednesdays with “The Mix,” highlighting a sampling of creativity and culture from across the metro area. For additional events, see our online events calendar here. Reach Sherry at sherry@finditinfondren.com.

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