As the weekend looms large in the distance, that eternal question – What the hell are you going to do this weekend? – looms equally large. Do you want to go to an art gallery? Do you want to listen to some live music? How about dabbling in some virtual reality? Well, luckily, it’s First Friday in downtown Lancaster, which means that there’s all that and more – indeed, there are dozens of events in Lancaster for the art lovers among us. Here’s our must-hit list.
Virtual Reality in The Candy Factory – Warehouse D (342 North Queen Street, Rear)
Depending on your age and interest level in various kinds of video games, you may already be familiar with the Oculus Virtual Reality headset. Popular among some gamers for the immersive experience that it offers, the Oculus headset is just what it says on the tin – an audio-visual headset that completely integrates the user in any number of virtual realities, from a horror game to a cinematic masterpiece. From 5:30-9 p.m. on Friday, in Warehouse D of The Candy Factory, the Oculus will serve as your access to a hyperrealistic tour around Lancaster County courtesy of brand-new marketing startup Greenfish Labs. Who doesn’t want to know what a horse-and-buggy ride is like without that distinctly Lancaster County smell?
Behind the Scenes Gallery & Guest House (26 North Water Street)
There’s a new gallery in town, and they’re welcoming visits from the public from 5-9 p.m. Behind the Scenes Gallery & Guest House is running a few raffles to break in the space – one free raffle ticket goes to every gallery guest, which goes towards winning a July 4-themed prize basket; another raffle, which requires purchased tickets to enter, will get the lucky winner one of 2 one-day passes to the Women’s Open. Don’t just go for the opportunity for awesome swag, though: check out the art. Currently on display are works by future house guest artist Stephen Gabone and jewelry by Judy Perilstein.
Sunshine Art+Design (104 West King Street)
Feeling patriotic as Independence Day weekend crawls ever-closer? Excellent! You’re in the perfect mood to visit Sunshine Art+Design from 6-9 p.m. There, you’ll find artwork from upwards of a dozen artists, all examining aspects America from the terrible to the beautiful, and everywhere in between. This event is also BYOC – bring your own coozie, of course – and the coolest, most outrageous, or silliest coozies – whatever strikes the folks at Sunshine’s fancy – just might win some kind of prize. Pretty good deal for a Friday night before the 4th of July.
Red Raven Art Company (138 North Prince Street)
The Red Raven Art Company has been, at one point or another, home to works by such artists Rosemary Castiglioni, Jean Zaun, Sarah McRae Morton, and more. This Friday – and rather fittingly, considering the timing – there’s an awful lot of Lancaster County pride at Red Raven. Angie Renfro is bringing her work to Red Raven, as are Scott Wright and Evan Kitson. Renfro, who generally works with oil paints, will be exhibiting her Iconic Farm Series; Wright brings bird’s-eye depictions of Lancaster landscapes and weather; Kitson is bringing his graphite portraits to the table. Check it out from 5-8 p.m.
Isadore Gallery (228 North Prince Street)
As long as you’re on Prince Street, stop by 228, home of Isadore Gallery. They’re running a mixed-media exhibition called “Still Watching,” featuring two Chicago artists. Debra Kayes Halpern, artist and lover of puns, is exhibiting pieces from her “See/Sea” series, as well as her “See Scrolls” piece. Miles Halpern is likewise showing work from a duo of his own exhibits, “Types” and “Golden Years,” where he focuses on, respectively, examining archetypal tales out of his subjects’ personalities through visual representation and narratives implied by objects. Check this out from 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
What’s on your First Friday itinerary? Share below.