yvonne mendezThe Atlanta Gallery Association, a nonprofit professional association of art galleries throughout the city, and 15 Buckhead/Atlanta art galleries have teamed up to provide artistically-inclined Atlantans with First Thursdays Art Walks.  During the series, on the first Thursday of each month, participating galleries will host special evening events and showings from 6 to 9 p.m. First Thursdays are free and open to the public and feature a range of art styles. The remaining dates are Aug. 6, Sept. 3, and Oct. 1. Participating galleries include: Alan Avery Art Company, Atlanta Artist Center, Atlanta Art Gallery, Copeland Collection, De-Fine Art Gallery, Catherine Kelleghan Gallery, Hagedorn Foundation Gallery, Huff Harrington Fine Art, Anne Irwin Fine Art, Lagerquist Gallery, Mason Murer Projects, Matre Gallery, Tew Galleries, TULA Art Center, Sportsman’s Gallery and Gallery Rodin. For more information, visit www.ATLArt.com.

The seventh annual Summer Shade Festival is located along the shaded pedestrian walkways of Grant Park, Aug. 29 and 30. The weekend is filled with a variety of featured events including the Artist Market with more than 100 booths, food vendors, the Adams Realtors 5K Run for the Park on Saturday morning, live performance stages and a children’s fun center. And, don’t forget  Corks & Forks, featuring top chefs/restaurants each day and some of the coolest wines/ales to hit the market. Back by popular demand is the Saturday Night Movie Under the Stars. See details and download a festival guide at


Earth From Space, a traveling Smithsonian exhibition, will be opening at Atlanta’s Central Library downtown on Aug. 8.  The exhibition, which features 40 extraordinary images of the earth captured by space satellites, will be on display through Oct. 4. Through the detailed images, which display everything from abnormal weather patterns like hurricanes to patterned land formations characteristic of Kansas farmland and channels entering the Atlantic Ocean, “Earth From Space” will demonstrate how and why satellite information is gathered.  In addition, it will include information about the individual satellites from which the images on display were obtained.  The exhibition’s curator is Andrew Johnson, a geographer at the National Air and Space Museum’s Center for Earth and Planetary Studies. The images are accompanied by various educational aids, including A Magic Planet digital video globe that gives visitors the bigger picture of where and how the pictures were taken.  On online version of the exhibition and access to educational resources like lesson plans and classroom activities is located on a companion website, www.EarthFromSpace.si.edu. For more information, including exhibition descriptions and tour schedules, visit www.Sites.si.edu.

Girls Incorporated of Atlanta has taken on the mission of providing more than 3,000 girls with life skills programming to help these girls make smarter decisions that will guide them on the pathway to successful futures.  Girls, Inc. achieves much of this through their volunteer advocates. On Aug. 5, Girls, Inc. will host an Advocacy Night, bringing together people interested in volunteering to discuss the issues that girls in Atlanta today are facing and opportunities to help out. The event, which will from 6 to 8 p.m., will take place at 461 Manget St. in Marietta. RSVP to Karolina Klinker at kklinker@girlsincatl.org or (770) 422-0999.

Pack your sleeping bags and get ready to experience the Fernbank Museum like you’ve never seen it before. As part of its 90 Days of Dinosaurs exhibit celebrating the fascinating world of dinosaurs this summer, Fernbank will host a Museum Sleepover inspired by the hit film Night at the Museum.  Fernbank is making science come alive with hands-on activities, camping “under the stars” in the museum’s star gallery, and a live nocturnal animal encounter. Special hands-on activities inspired by Night at the Museum include how to make an Egyptian cartouche, an exploration of basic flight principles that propelled Amelia Earhart through the air, and a lesson on how secret messages were transmitted with Caesar’s cipher.  The Museum Sleepover is suitable for families and groups with children ages 7 to 12.  The adventure will start on Aug. 2 at 6 p.m. and will keep going until the following morning at 9:30 a.m. Admission to the event is $75 for members or $100 for nonmembers and includes a light dinner, continental breakfast, and a special screening of the IMAX adventure Dinosaurs Alive. Because space is limited, advance reservations are required and can be made by calling (404) 929-6400.  For more information, visit www.FernbankMuseum.org/90days.

In August the Woodruff Arts Center will host Artspalooza, a series of performances, workshops, and activities designed to connect children to the arts. Artsapalooza will feature performances from more than 30 artists from a variety of genres, including jazz, circus arts, world percussion, and comedy. Kids can also participate in interactive activities like paper making and mural painting. The event will take place on three Saturdays in August, the 15, 22 and 29 from 10 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. at the Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. Space is limited and will be given on a first-come, first-serve basis.  For more information and to register for the event, visit www.yawac.org.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.