Most of the leaves are still hanging on, but I see a few making those first tentative efforts to leap to the ground.

by Sherry Lucas

Is fall finally here? Most of the leaves are still hanging on, but I see a few making those first tentative efforts to leap to the ground. Oh, wait!! Is that a breeze they’re riding on the way down? Oh, glory be.

In Jackson lore, the Mississippi State Fair usually ushers in fall with its second week — we call it “fair weather” — and I swear I’ve felt a bit of it already. With pumpkins coming into fresh orange focus at the Ag Museum and candy cluttering the aisle at the grocery store, it’s time to embrace your outer October. While you still can, without rake in hand!

Plenty of indoor fun ahead, too, but get your share of patio/deck/porch sittin’ in while the gettin’s good.

FinnFest is today, 4-7 p.m., at St. Joseph Catholic School benefitting six-year-old Finn Blaylock, diagnosed with cancer in June. Bounce houses, food, live music (Patrick Harkins is on the list), a blood drive and bingo top the activities. All proceeds benefit the Blaylock family.

Get sweaty and earn yourself either a complimentary craft beer or pop from Deep South Pops today at 6:15 p.m. at Highland Village’s Village Social Bend and Brew.

The Pumpkin Adventure 2018 is Wednesday through Saturday, Oct. 17-20 and Oct. 24-26 at the Mississippi Agriculture & Forestry Museum, 9 a.m. to noon, with Pumpkin Adventure Family Days on Saturday and Oct. 20 (adjusted hours 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.). Admission is $7 for ages 2 and older.

The Mississippi State Fair continues as the behemoth on the capital city calendar of fun. Senior American Day Wednesday includes entertainment, plenty of vendors, nutritious tastings and more, in the Mississippi Coliseum. Music on the Budweiser stage on the Midway continues: Colt Ford, Luckenbach (Willie Nelson tribute band), and Fred T and the Band, all still to play. Find more details in this year’s Fun Guide.

Vineyard Vines hosts a Friends of Children’s Hospital fundraiser, 5:30 p.m. Thursday, at Highland Village. Take 10% off your purchase while Vineyard Vines gives 10% back to Friends.

Thursday night at the State Fair, contemporary Christian band MercyMe brings its Imagine Nation tour to the Mississippi Coliseum. Tickets, $20-$60-plus and on sale at the Coliseum box office or ticketmaster.com, for the 7 p.m. show and include free fair admission that night.

Pop/soul artist Sam Mooney, whose piano-driven sound has propelled him to No. 1 on the iTunes singer/songwriter chart, shares his tunes at Duling Hall, 8 p.m. Thursday. Ryan Warnick opens. It’s $8 advance (ardenland.net) and $10 day of show.

Sam Mooney performs Thursday night at Duling Hall. Image: ardenland

Fischer Galleries hosts an opening reception for Louisiana-based artist Bernard Mattox, featuring new paintings and sculpture, 5-7 p.m. Thursday.

Works by Bernard Mattox are featured at Fischer Galleries’ art opening Thursday. Image: Fischer Galleries

Join Fleet Creative’s “Making Better Photographs” workshop with Andrew Welch, 6-7:30 p.m. Thursday at Coalesce Coworking, 109 N. State St. There’s limited space for this free class; register here.

Legendary blues guitarist Buddy Guy brings the Chicago blues homes to roost with a Thursday night show at Thalia Mara Hall, 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $55 to $95-plus on ticketmaster.com.

The JSU Homecoming Pop Up shop, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday at J.R. Lynch St. (the old Gallery 1) and featuring Offbeat and Conkrete Sneaker Boutique is part of JSU’s homecoming week festivities, with sneakers, T-shirts, vinyl records and more.

Quench your thirst during a packed weekend at Lucky Town Brewing Company, with these tasty draws: taproom’s open 4-8 p.m. Thursday; the Hometown Tailgate, where you bring a grill, chairs, etc., and watch football and Grills of Mississippi will cook up a whole hog out back, starting at 11 a.m. Saturday; annual Glucklich Fest, with Oktoberfest style fun and games, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday; the 2nd edition Beer Mile Saturday with signup here.

Friday’s Gallery Talk, 11:30 a.m. to noon Friday at the Mississippi Museum of Art, is led by Kiyomi design firm co-founders Robin C. Dietrick and Heidi Flynn Barnett, who’ll share insights on their work designing the “Jeffrey Gibson: Like a Hammer” exhibition. It’s free and open to the public.

Heidi Flynn Barnett and Robin Dietrich lead Friday’s Gallery Talk. Image: Mississippi Museum of Art

Catch the Dazz & Brie: Can’t Chase Girls Tour, a rock ’n soul duo and band, 7 p.m. Friday at Hops & Habanas.

Dancing shoes hit the brick streets in Clinton with Dinner & Jazz, 6 p.m. Friday with music from the Mississippi College Jazz Band and food available for purchase. Hoof it back to Olde Towne Clinton at 9 a.m. Saturday for the Fall for Clinton Market.

Disney Junior Dance Party on Tour, 6 p.m. Friday at Thalia Mara Hall, is an interactive live concert and show presented by Pull-Ups Training Pants that invites kids and families to sing and dance along with Disney Junior’s greatest hits, with live appearances by Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Elena of Avalor, Sofia the First, Muppet Babies and more. Tickets start at $18 on ticketfly.com.

The Disney Junior Dance Party is Friday at Thalia Mara Hall. Image: ardenland

The 10th Annual Renaissance Euro-Fest Classic European Auto and Motorcycle Show, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Renaissance at Highland Colony, offers a sleek and rev-worthy collection of vehicles to view.

The Greater Belhaven Foundation presents Mississippi Puppetry Guild’s “The Princess & the Pea, 11 a.m. Saturday at Belhaven Park, 1000 Poplar Boulevard (between Jefferson and Hazel streets). Children from the audience get a hand in, too, in a demonstration with simple easy-to-make puppets. It’s free.

Local hand-made goods and live music are the order of the day for The Market, being held this month on Saturday, 3-7 p.m. at The District at Eastover in LeFleur East.

Time your Renaissance Euro-Fest visit to catch “Opera To Go,” as performers Eric Botto, Demi VanderWerff, Harlan Mapp and Sarah Stembel, along with pianist Christopher Lovely and Mississippi Opera Chorus members, sing opera and musical theater selections at the clock tower. It’s free. Earlier in the day, keep an eye and ear out for “pop-up” performances at Broad Street Bakery, Whole Foods and Fresh Market.

Holley Day, a breast cancer fundraiser, is 11 a.m. Saturday at Kendra Scott Design, with 20 percent of proceeds from store purchases will benefit the nonprofit Inheritance of Hope.

A Night Out in Livingston, 6:30-10:30 p.m. Friday in The Town of Livingston by More than a Tourist, includes a tour aboard the MS Party Bus, drinks and dinner at The Gathering and a stop at the new Briar Patch. It’s $72, email mtattravel@gmail.com.

The opening reception for a Senior Art Exhibition at Belhaven University is 2-4 p.m. Saturday in the Bitsy Irby Visual Arts and Dance Center. The exhibit remains on view through Dec. 11.

Indie folk artist Corey Kilgannon performs Saturday, 8 p.m., at Underground 119, with McKenzie Lockhart opening. It’s $10.

Corey Kilgannon plays Saturday night at Duling Hall. Image: ardenland

Six spectacular singers headline Mississippi Opera’s Alexander Awards Concert, 7:30 p.m. Monday at Duling Hall. Competition winners include; Sarah Stembel of Mobile, Christopher Plaas of Johnson City, Tennessee; Kimberly Milton of Houston, Texas; Elizabeth Lewis of Chicago; Samantha Long of Valdosta, Georgia; and Margaret Ann Zentner of Baton Rouge. They’ll perform with Mississippi Opera members conducted by artistic director Jay Dean in a culminating celebration of one of the nation’s fastest-growing vocal competitions. Tickets are $25 at msopera.org, 601-960-2300 or at the door.

Mississippi Opera’s Alexander Awards Concert is Monday at Duling Hall. Image: Mississippi Opera

Cocktails for a Cure, 6 p.m. Monday at Barrelhouse, offers champagne, live music, silent auction and a four-course dinner with signature cocktails to benefit the American Cancer Society. Tickets are $75 (not including gratuity).

The Millsaps Arts & Lecture Series welcomes singer/songwriter Chuck Prophet, whose newest album is “Bobby Fuller Died for Your Sins,” 7-9 p.m. Tuesday in the Gertrude C. Ford Academic Complex Recital Hall. It’s $10.

Sherry Lucas, a features writer in Jackson for the last 35 years, is here on Wednesdays with “The Mix,” highlighting a curated sampling of creativity and culture from across the metro area. For additional Fondren events, see our online calendar here. Reach Sherry at sherry@finditinfondren.com.

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