Hot dog! Mullin over a great weekend

For my money, Shawn Mullins' latest record, "Honeydew," is his finest since "Soul's Core" made him a (fleeting) star. So I'll definitely be at The Loft on Friday, when the singer-songwriter performs. It's his first visit since the record came out in March. Actually, it's his first show here since 2006. So pony up your $15, kids. Show time is 8 p.m. Details: 706-596-8141.

Lots of folks are heading to Family Day in the Park on Saturday, which runs from noon-6 p.m. Foxie 105's free concerts are tempting — even for a guy like me who doesn't dig much modern R&B or hip-hop. But the Nappy Roots are playing, for crying out loud. The fun's at Cooper Creek Park.

Regardless of whether I crash Family Day, I'll be heading to another park Saturday night. I'll be going to see the Catfish, where the real game is going to be keeping my springer spaniel in check around all the other animals. Not just Hook, mind you, but all the other dogs that owners bring to Bark in the Park Night. The Catfish play at 7 p.m., and tickets are $5-$15. Details: 706-571-8866.

— Brad Barnes

Art in the bark in the dark

I've been waiting for a weekend such as this, when the used book and art sales stars have aligned in an unholy matrimony of savings.

The cacophony of sweet deals starts Friday with the Summer Art Gala from 4-7 p.m. at The Front Porch, 1309 Wildwood Ave. Allegedly, local artists will be hawking their warez at this Midtown establishment while prizes and some refreshments make the rounds.

Stick with the black-and-white photography. Most of the other stuff just isn't up to snuff.

Saturday portends some storms, so you would be well advised to stay inside the Columbus Public Library at the Friends of the Libraries Book Sale. Going from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., you can fulfill all your paperback, hardback and antiqueback needs at salacious prices.

Be sure to skip the Bark at the Park foolishness Saturday night, unless you like watching everywhere you step.

Wrap up your scandalous days off by slinking down to Monday's Annual One Day Sale at the Columbus Museum, 1251 Wynnton Road. The books may not be as varied as the library's sale, but you'll also find stuff you can pawn off on family members once Christmas rolls around again.

— Alan Riquelmy

Give a little, get a little

I've stolen enough ketchup packets from fast-food joints to know there's nothing wrong with accepting a little charity. That's why I'm using this weekend as an opportunity to embrace our city's altruistic spirit.

Beginning with Friday's Beat The Pump Night at Aqua Nightclub, 1812 Midtown Drive. The event features $1 bottles of beer, plus giveaways for free gas. There's also talk of a Beer Blaster — some Super Soaker-like device that sprays beer. So, um, don't wear a white T-shirt.

The bar opens at 7 p.m. and there's no cover. Call 706-358-7128.

Saturday, hit up the Coca-Cola Space Science Center, 701 Front Ave., for the center's 12th anniversary celebration. As a "thank you" to the community, admission to the event is free.

It's 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. and includes demonstrations, giveaways and presentations by famed astronaut Story Musgrave.

Finally, end your weekend by catching Journey tribute band Chain Reaction at The Roadhouse, 1047 Broadway. Show starts at 10 p.m. and cover is $5.

There's a 99 percent chance you'll spot a guy in Tevas and a mullet crooning along with "Open Arms." He's not the altruistic part of the night.

That part comes when your bartender uses the night's 102nd "Any Way You Want It" pun.

— Sonya Sorich