1. Brews and tunes: Glenwood South must have gotten a bit jealous of Fayetteville Street’s Oak City 7 summer concert series.
Downtown’s other district is getting in on the Thursday night action in August and September. This week will mark the third installment of the free Glenwood Live Concert Series on Tucker Street in front of Lucky B’s bar. Local bluegrass favorites The Gravy Boys will perform, and craft beer, wine and margaritas will be served in the street – a more intimate version of Oak City 7. 5:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday, Tucker Street west of Glenwood Avenue, shoplocalraleigh.org
2. A taste of the Caribbean: Fayetteville Street takes a trip to the tropics on Saturday.
The Raleigh Durham Afro-Caribbean Association hosts the CaribMask Carnival, a parade and street festival celebrating Afro-Caribbean culture. A parade of marching bands steps off at noon with the food vendors, performances and activities all afternoon. Organizers boast the “most spectacular, colorful, and energetic carnival festival” in Raleigh. Noon to 8 p.m., City Plaza, caribmask.com
3. Celebrate meat: Boatloads of barbecue will be up for grabs Thursday through Sunday.
The four-day Raleigh RibFest makes its debut this weekend in front of the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts. Pit masters from across the country will compete and offer up ribs, brisket and just about any type of ’cue you can think of. The festival also has a wide variety of musical performances from bluesman John Dee Holman to rapper Money B of Digital Underground fame. The judging happens Saturday afternoon, but the food and entertainment runs all weekend. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, 1 South St., raleighribfest.info
4. Free theater: N.C. State’s University Theatre debuts two brand-new plays Friday night.
A Night of New Plays will present two plays by Raleigh writer Anthony Copian-Garcia, “The Whirling Dervish” and “A Cheating Nirvana.” The description offered for the second piece is particularly intriguing: “Clem is ready to settle down and start a family with his girlfriend, Lupe. How will she respond when she finds out Clem is bisexual and already has a lifelong male companion named Tots?” 7:30 p.m. Friday, Kennedy-McIlwee Studio Theatre, 2241 Dunn Ave., ncsu.edu/theatre
5. Class it up: Ruggero Piano offers a free night of classical music.
Ruggero’s is a third-generation family business that hosts occasional performances in Bosendorfer Hall, a 148-seat performance venue named for the historic Bosendorfer Hall in Vienna. This week’s piano and vocal performance includes selections by Robert Schumann, Beethoven and others. 7:30 p.m., Friday, 4720-120 Hargrove Road.