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To do list

By Milva Didomizio
July 14, 2011

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PICK OF THE DAY

Painting the town red Craftspeople, dancers, musicians, and other artistic types take over Davis Square for ArtBeat, the Somerville Arts Council’s annual festival. The event features more than a dozen bands and dance troupes and 75 craft vendors. Performers include Contrapose Dance, Lindy Bomb Squad, Atlas Soul, Mean Creek, and the Tarbox Ramblers. Put on your best red duds for Saturday’s Red Menace Parade and other scarlet-themed activities planned as part of this year’s ‘‘RED’’ theme. July 15, 6-10 p.m. Seven Hills Park, behind Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square, Somerville. (Rain date July 16.) July 16, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Seven Hills Park. (Rain date July 17.) Suggested donation $3. 617-625-6600, ext. 2985; www.somervilleartscouncil.org

TODAY

Castles in the sand When we were kids, we never built anything like a 20-foot tall, 40-foot wide sand castle. We’re game to visit one, though, at the 8th Annual Revere Beach National Sand Sculpting Festival. The centerpiece sculpture, “Castle of Lights,’’ is a giant interactive structure complete with illumination. Artists come from all over to build their own sandy masterpieces. Enjoy live entertainment and kids’ activities throughout the weekend. July 14, 6-10 p.m. July 15-16, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. July 17, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free. Revere Beach State Park. www.reverebeachpartnership.com

Hot stuff More than 20 artists from the Brickbottom Artist Association display their work in “Heat Wave.’’ The show is the group’s summer members’ exhibition and features painting, photography, and mixed media work by Sherry Autor, Patsea Cobb, Warren Dent, Polly Pook, and others. July 14-Aug. 20, Thurs-Sat noon-5 p.m. Opening reception July 14, 6-8 p.m. Free. Brickbottom Gallery, 1 Fitchburg St., Somerville. 617-776-3410, www.brickbottom.com

Lights on the water In the Japanese Bon Festival, people send messages to departed ancestors. The tradition is the inspiration for the Forest Hills Educational Trust’s annual Lantern Festival. Put your message on a lantern and float it on Lake Hibiscus. July 14, 6-9 p.m. Rain date July 21. Forest Hills Cemetery, 95 Forest Hills Ave., Jamaica Plain. Admission free, $10 donation per lantern, $10 parking fee. 617-524-3150, www.foresthillstrust.org

TOMORROW

Moving on The Independent Drama Society is closing up shop after three seasons so the staff can explore new projects, but not before a celebratory run of Neil Simon’s “The Good Doctor.’’ The comedy, inspired by Chekov’s short stories, features vignettes about characters including a young actress, a government clerk, and a womanizer who favors married ladies. July 15, 8 p.m. Through July 23. $20, $15 students and seniors. The Factory Theatre, 791 Tremont St., Boston. www.independentdramasociety.org

SATURDAY

Let’s get liberal What with economic deadlines, the debt ceiling, and partisanship, when it comes to politics what’s to laugh about? Plenty, at Stephanie Miller’s Sexy Liberal Comedy Tour. The radio star is joined by Hal Sparks and John Fugelsang for stand-up sets, discussion on topics of the week, and audience Q&A. July 16, 7 p.m. $32-$77. The Wilbur Theatre, 246 Tremont St., Boston. 800-745-3000, www.thewilburtheatre.com

On tour Hop on a trolley to join a guided tour exploring Boston’s African-American community. Roxbury’s Black History Tour looks at the movement of blacks from the North End in the 1700s, to Beacon Hill and the South End in the 1800s, to Roxbury and beyond in the 20th and 21st centuries. Along the way, learn about the community’s black churches, artists, and influential figures. July 16, 12:30 and 12:50 p.m. $25. Roxbury Heritage State Park, 183 Roxbury St., Roxbury. 617-427-1006, www.discoverroxbury.org

BY MILVA DIDOMIZIO WWW.BOSTON.COM/THINGSTODO
Check websites or call to confirm events before going.
Send information two weeks in advance to jwulff@globe.com.