From Virginia Spirits Month to a Birchmere concert: What we’re looking forward to this week

This week, we’re looking forward to an animal-centric exhibit at The Loft Gallery and celebrating Virginia Spirits Month with some local booze.

Catoctin Creek Distilling Company
Photo by Rey Lopez

By Eliza BerkonWinn DuvallStefanie GansBeth Kellmurray and Lynn Norusis

This week, Northern Virginia Magazine editors are looking forward to an animal-centric exhibit at The Loft Gallery, Matthew Sweet’s show at The Birchmere and celebrating Virginia Spirits Month with some local booze.

Sucker for animals
Sept. 5-Oct. 1

I’ve made it known that I am surrounded by animals (two dogs, two cats) and am always on the lookout for more, though I’m tentative about disrupting the balance in my house. (I often joke we have species identity issues.) I’m also pretty sure if I were to bring another living thing into our modest one-level ranch home, I might be the one given the boot. So I’m headed to Occoquan to take in Good Dogs, Bat Cats and Weirdos, an exhibit at The Loft Gallery, where Charla Wilkerson will display her colorful, witty pieces from Sept. 5-Oct. 1. Because, seriously, who doesn’t like animals—real or painted? –LN // The Loft Gallery: 313 Mill St., Occoquan

Matthew Sweet at the Birchmere
Sept. 7

’90s power-pop master Matthew Sweet—who came up in the same scene in Athens, Georgia, as R.E.M.—is heading to the Birchmere this week in support of his new album, Tomorrow Forever, but I’m hoping he’ll revisit career highlights from his 1991 opus, Girlfriend, and, of course, “Sick of Myself.” –BK // The Birchmere: 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria

Virginia Spirits Month (with trucker hat)
Through Sept. 30

September marks Virginia Spirits Month, and this year’s celebration includes this little comp: buy a bottle of Virginia-made booze from a participating ABC store and score a Virginia is for Lovers trucker hat. –SG 

Drafting a most-likely-mediocre fantasy football team

The NFL regular season finally (FINALLY) kicks off this Thursday with the Kansas City Chiefs visiting the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots. Before that date, though, I’ll be crossing my fingers and drafting what I hope will not be a completely terrible fantasy football team. My performance has been in steep decline since my one good season (as an unemployed recent college grad with little to do but track stats), but, you know, you can’t win if you don’t play. –WD

We’ve got a situation

Cabs are here!” That’s what I intend to yell, minus the Pauly D coiffure, when I arrive this Saturday in a land I’ve long yearned for but never visited: the Jersey shore. Friends have invited us to stay at their beach house, and though we’ve got three children under 6 between our two families, I hope we manage to capture a little of the laissez-faire attitude so faithfully pursued by folks like Snooki. It may just be in the context of playing Clue rather than hitting the club … –EB