Fair: It’s the first weekend of the North Georgia State Fair, with a full array of games and rides, free attractions and shows, farm animals, blue ribbon competitions, entertainment and fair foods. Concerts are free with admission and the first is on Sept. 24 at 8 p.m. with Joe Nichols. The fair continues through Oct. 3 at Jim R. Miller Park in Marietta.
Comedy: Dom Irrera grew up in an Italian-American family in South Philadelphia, which provides much of the fodder for his stand-up comedy. He’ll perform Sept. 24-25 at the Punchline in Sandy Springs. 404-252-5233, www.punchline.com.
Stage: Newlywed Suzanna fixes her best friend Max up with her husband’s beautiful but odd co-worker in the Actor’s Express production of “Becky Shaw,” now in it’s final weekend. Through Sept. 25.
Stage: Revisit the strong women of “Steel Magnolias” as Decatur’s Renaissance Project brings the beloved play to the stage through Oct. 3.
Music: Athens jam-rock mainstay Widespread Panic takes over Alpharetta’s Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre for a two-night stand Sept. 24-25.
Stage: Charles Dickens’ “Oliver Twist” is relocated to 1920s-era New Orleans in “Twist, An American Musical,” the tuneful tale of an orphan. Through Oct. 3 at the Alliance Theatre, Atlanta.
Fair: Livestock competitions, clowns, death-defying stunts, beauty pageants, free concerts and lots of rides are all part of the fun at the Gwinnett County Fair. Through Sept. 26 at the Gwinnett Country Fairgrounds in Lawrenceville.
Stage, music: Relive the days of the Rat Pack with “The Rat Pack is Back,” a tribute to the most famous entertainers in Las Vegas and their live 12-piece big band as they appeared live in the Sands Hotel Copa Room. 8 p.m. Sept. 24 at the Frederick Brown, Jr. Amphitheater in Peachtree City.
Stage: The Red Phoenix Theatre Company’s production of Sam Shepard’s “True West” continues through Oct. 2 at the Red Clay Theatre and Arts Center in Duluth.
Fair: The Georgia International Horse Park in Conyers is home to the annual Rockdale County Fair which begins Sept. 24 and continues through Oct. 3.
Stage, kids: In Theatre in the Square’s “How I Became A Pirate,” a motley group of silly pirates recruit a young sand-castle-building expert to dig for buried treasure. Through Oct. 10.
Museums, free: Across metro Atlanta, 11 museums and historic homes will participate in the sixth annual Smithsonian Museum Day, opening their doors to visitors at no charge. Check out the list of participating venues. To print out an admission card (one per household), good for two people, and view a complete list of participants, go to the Smithsonian website.
Music: One of rock’s most independent spirits, Aimee Mann, performs Sept. 25 at Variety Playhouse in Little Five Points.
Festival: The brand new Midtown Festival of the Arts will blanket Peachtree Street from 5th to 10th Street with music, art and more on Sept. 25-26.
Sports: Tennessee State tries to break its eight-year losing streak to Florida A&M in the Atlanta Football Classic at the Georgia Dome.
Home tour: The 38th annual Grant Park Tour of Homes, taking place Sept. 25 and 26, is the biggest fundraiser for the Grant Park Neighborhood Association, which uses the funds to pay for extra security patrols and support community groups and schools. The tour begins at the park entrance at Milledge and Cherokee avenues in Atlanta.
Festival: A car show, a pet parade, arts and crafts vendors and much more will make up the Sandy Springs Festival. Sept. 25-26 at Heritage Green in Sandy Springs.
Festival: The tastiest place to be this weekend is among the 300-plus chili masters at the Great Miller Lite Chili Cook-off at Stone Mountain Park on Sept. 25.
Festival: The Duluth Fall Festival is the perfect opportunity to discover (or re-discover) the many charms of the historic downtown of Gwinnett’s fourth-oldest city. Sept. 25-26 along Main Street in Duluth.
Sports: Another season comes to an end for the Atlanta Rollergirls, Atlanta’s roller derby queens. Teams will face off in “Clash of the Titans,” the year’s final showdown, on Sept. 25 at the Yaarab Shrine Center Auditorium in Midtown.
Stage: In “Conversations with my Wife,” a well-known author battling with the grief of losing his wife has a conversation that allows him to begin the next chapter in this world premiere. The Theatre in the Square production begins with previews Sept. 26 and 28, $12. Regular run Sept. 29-Oct. 31. $20-$33
Music: One of Mexico’s most popular and enduring singers, Grammy winner Joan Sebastian, performs at Gwinnett Arena at 5 p.m. Sept. 26.
Music: The Unplugged in the Park series continues at Midtown’s Park Tavern with performances by Alice Peacock and Paul Melancon. The free show begins at 6 p.m. Sept. 26.
Stage: The Atlanta Shakespeare Company’s “Anne of the Thousand Days” is a tale of the troubled relationship between Henry VIII and his second wife Anne Boleyn (mother of Elizabeth I). Sept. 26-Oct. 23 at the New American Shakespeare Tavern in Atlanta.