Looking for some entertainment in Southwest Florida?
Here are five fun things to do this weekend and beyond, including the Songwriters For Vets 2023 concert and an exhibit celebrating the pop-rock band Devo. Plus, we look ahead at other things to do in the coming weeks: Fort Myers Art Walk, Denny Laine of The Moody Blues and Wings, and more.
EVENT SUBMISSIONS: Got anything cool happening next weekend or later? I’m always looking for concerts, festivals and other great events for my weekly Top 5 things to do. To be considered, email me the details at [email protected] or message me at facebook.com/charles.runnells.7.
1. DEVO 5-0: The Beginning Was The End exhibit
A 50th-anniversary exhibit celebrating the work of art-pop-rock band Devo, best known for the 1980 hit “Whip It” and its iconic MTV music video. It’s billed as the first career-spanning survey of the group, put together by gallery director Jade Dellinger, who co-wrote two books about the band. Exhibits include stage costumes, instruments, props, handwritten lyrics, concert flyers, concept art and more. Opens Monday, Aug. 28 and continues through Dec. 9. No opening reception, but lectures, concerts and special events will be announced later. Free. Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at Florida SouthWestern State College, 8099 College Parkway S.W., Building L, south Fort Myers. 489-9313 or rauschenberggallery.com
2. Los Tigres del Norte at Hertz Arena
The Grammy-winning Mexican-American norteño band has sold millions of albums and is famous for its politically charged corridos and its stories about working people, immigrants, outlaws and politicians. Their name translates to The Tigers of The North. 8 p.m Friday, Aug. 25. $50-$200. Hertz Arena, 11000 Everblades Parkway, Estero. 948-7825 or hertzarena.com
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3. Fall Home & Garden Show at Caloosa Sound
The 27th-annual Fall Home & Garden Show returns with more home-improvement products and presentations from contractors, remodelers and home specialists. There will also be hourly prize drawings. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Aug. 26-27. Free. Caloosa Sound Amphitheater in Centennial Park, 2000 W. First St., downtown Fort Myers. expomanagementinc.com
4. Songwriters For Vets 2023 concert in Bonita Springs
Nashville songwriters return for another Southwest Florida concert raising money for military veterans through the Songwriters for Vets foundation. They’ll perform and tell the stories behind their songs. The lineup includes Tim Nichols, Channing Wilson, Tyler Reeve, Patrick Davis and Django Walker. 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26. $125. VIP packages also available. The Hyatt Regency at Coconut Point, 5001 Coconut Road, Bonita Springs. songwriters4vets.com
5. PAW Patrol Live!: ‘Heroes Unite’ at Hertz Arena
The heroic pups from Nickelodeon’s animated preschool TV series come to life in an all-new show at Hertz Arena. Audience members get to be honorary members of the pack and help navigate the globe to make it back to Adventure Bay in the nick of time. The show promises “stunning visual effects, captivating storytelling and a vibrant musical score that will have guests dancing in their seats and singing along.” 6 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 29-30. $45-$85. Parking on site is $30, plus taxes and fees (no cash accepted). Hertz Arena, 11000 Everblades Parkway, Estero. 948-7825 or hertzarena.com
MORE THINGS TO DO THIS WEEKEND
Theatre Conspiracy’s ‘Sanctuary City’
Last chance to see this drama from Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Martyna Majok. The story follows two young, undocumented immigrants who depend on each other for survival as they fight for a place for themselves in America. Now through Sunday, Aug. 27. $32. Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers. 939-2787 or artinlee.org
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Rapper 454 at Davis Art Center
Orlando-born, New York City rapper 454 performs in downtown Fort Myers. The show also includes local hip-hop and pop acts Terry Presume, Ike Offline, Kidd Kwest, Last Minute, Joseph Fields and ALX (brother to pop singer/rapper and “Euphoria” actor Dominic Fike). Presented by local art collective Artisan Trash & DLC. 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26. $20. Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center, 2301 First St., downtown Fort Myers. tinyurl.com/bdfcah7p
Fort Myers Art Walk
The monthly event in downtown Fort Myers features new art exhibits at downtown galleries, receptions, live music and art vendors outside on First Street. September’s exhibits include Miguel Vazquez’s paintings and sculptured made from recycled materials at Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. 6-10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1. Free. Art Walk takes place on the first Friday of each month. Downtown Fort Myers. facebook.com/fortmyersartwalk
‘Storm Stories’ exhibit
A collaborative exhibit featuring artwork and written personal stories detailing people’s various Hurricane Ian experiences. The written stories, compiled by the Gulf Coast Writers Association, will be printed in a new book also called “Storm Stories.” Opens Friday, Sept. 1 and continues through Sept. 30. No opening reception, but there will be a closing reception on Sept. 28, the one-year anniversary of Ian. Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers. 939-2787 or artinlee.org
Wilderpalooza fundraiser concert for Soapy Tuna, Cinder guitarist
Southwest Florida bands perform Labor Day weekend to raise money for James Wilder, guitarist for local rock acts Cinder and Soapy Tuna. Wilder has been diagnosed with stage 4, metastasized colon cancer and needs help with his medical bills and other expenses. The lineup includes Soapy Tuna, 420 Brothers, Smack Daddy, Radio Ghost, Geek Skwad, A200 and Crowley’s Alibi. There will also be raffles and shirts for sale. 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 3. $15 in advance, $25 at the door. The Ranch Concert Hall & Saloon, 2158 Colonial Blvd., Fort Myers. 985-9839 or theranchfortmyers.com
Denny Laine of The Moody Blues and Wings
Singer-songwriter Denny Laine was a founding member of rock bands Wings (with Paul McCartney) and The Moody Blues. The Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee will play an acoustic concert and tells stories from his career. This concert was originally scheduled for July 7 but postponed due to illness. 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 7. $49. Limited tickets left. Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers. 939-2787 or artinlee.org
— Connect with this reporter: Charles Runnells is an arts and entertainment reporter for The News-Press and the Naples Daily News. For news tips or other entertainment-related matters, call him at 239-335-0368 (for tickets to shows, call the venue) or email him at[email protected]. You can also connect with him on Facebook (facebook.com/charles.runnells.7), X (formerly Twitter) (@charlesrunnells), Threads (@crunnells1) and Instagram (@crunnells1).