Staff file photo / The Harlem Globetrotters' "Hammer" Harrison (31) high-fives fans as the proceeds between the Globetrotters and the Washington Generals at McKenzie Arena in December 2018.

The weekend's entertainment options include basketball superstars, a teen ventriloquist and a comedian who captured his stand-up routine in the pages of a New York Times best-seller.

But first, the things you can't do:

— The Polar Plunge, a fundraiser for the Lula Lake Land Trust, is sold out. This bracing leap into the Lookout Mountain, Georgia, lake is scheduled Saturday, when high temperatures are expected to barely reach above freezing. Cold, yes, but the Polar Plunge is the only day of the year when the public is allowed to swim in these pristine waters.

Matthew Hubbard, director of development, said 100 people have signed up to take the plunge, perhaps inspired by the absence of the event the past two years.

"It's the biggest Polar Plunge we've ever done," he said.

Comedian Bill Maher's Sunday performance at the Tivoli Theatre has been canceled.

String Theory's community engagement residency and concerts by the Anderson-Sasaki Duo have been postponed until April.

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— Chattanooga Symphony & Opera will perform "Pictures at an Exhibition" in its Masterworks series at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Memorial Auditorium, 399 McCallie Ave. The title work is a suite of 10 piano pieces created in 1874 by Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky and adapted for full symphony in 1922 by French composer Maurice Ravel. CSO principal timpanist Alex Wadner will be featured on contemporary American composer William Kraft's "Concerto for Timpani No. 1." Tickets are $25-$90.

— MidWinter Music Fest, an indoor festival featuring 10 Chattanooga and North Georgia Christian artists on two stages, starts at 5:30 pm. Friday at City Church Chattanooga, 7122 Lee Highway. Tickets are $10 (free for kids 10 and younger).

— Tennessee Valley Theatre, 184 W. Jackson Ave., Spring City, Tennessee, hosts Songwriters Showcase with Kevin Mahoney, Ray Ligon, Parker Pressley and Darrell Wallace taking the stage at 3 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $20.

— Fountainhead Taproom, 1617 Rossville Ave., will host a birthday bash, concert and auction to support Zarzour's Cafe co-owner Shannon Fuller, who is battling cancer, 4-10 p.m. Saturday. Among the musical acts are Roger Alan Wade, Amber Carrington and No Big Deal.

— The Arts Avenue, 1800 Rossville Ave., welcomes country singers Karen Waldrup, of Nashville, and Dusty Leigh, of Chattanooga, for an acoustic double bill at 8 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $15-$28; meet-and-greet opportunities are available.

— The Woodshop, 5500 St. Elmo Ave., features a trio of local talents — Matt Bohannon Band, Mark "Porkchop" Holder and Shake It Like a Caveman — at 8 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door.

— The Caverns, 555 Charlie Roberts Road in Pelham, Tennessee, eases out of its winter hibernation with an underground show by Americana band Railroad Earth at 8 p.m. CST Saturday. Tickets are $55-$340.

— Tennessee Songwriters Week doesn't arrive until the last week of February, but a prelude of musical events starts this weekend. Thirty-five venues across the state are hosting qualifying rounds through Feb. 12 to determine which artists will perform in showcases Feb. 20-26 for a chance to sing at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville. Area venues include the Rhea County Courthouse, 1475 Market St., Dayton, Tenn., which will have its qualifying round of 20 musicians at 6 p.m. Friday; and Puckett's, 2 W. Aquarium Way, whose musicians will perform 4-7 p.m. Sunday (call 423-708-8505 for table availability).

— Walker Theatre, 399 McCallie Ave., will host the Robert Cray Band, led by the multiple Grammy-winning blues guitarist and singer, at 8 p.m. Tuesday. Tickets are $40-$55.

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Chattanooga-area event roundup



— Ron White, who followed up his stint in the Blue Collar Comedy Tour in the early aughts with the 2006 best-seller "I Had the Right To Remain Silent but I Didn't Have the Ability," will bring his solo act to Memorial Auditorium, 399 McCallie Ave., at 8 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $39-$89.

— "Big Irish" Jay Hollingsworth is featured this weekend at The Comedy Catch, 29 Station St. Shows start at 7:30 and 9:45 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $17-$19.



— Wes Hixon's Outdoor Adventures & Travel open house is 1-6:30 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Chattanooga Convention Center, 1 Carter Plaza. Exhibits will showcase the Wildwood, Georgia-based business, which specializes in hunting and fishing trips and photo safaris, plus other vendors. Admission is free. Tickets are available for an optional dinner with entertainment both nights, priced at $50 and $65, respectively. The event is co-sponsored by the Dade County Sheriff's Office. Proceeds support Southeastern Guide Dogs.

— Chattanooga ModelCon, a showcase of works by Chattanooga Scale Modelers, is open 2-6 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Chattanooga Convention Center, 1 Carter Plaza. Members will have various models on display and entered into judging in categories such as aircraft, armor, automotive, ship, figure, sci-fi, dioramas and miscellaneous. The $15 ticket is good for both days.

— An Afternoon With the Cranes, a program on sandhill cranes presented in partnership with the Tennessee Ornithological Society, is noon-4:30 p.m. Saturday at Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center, 400 Garden Road. The first part of the program includes a chance to see the Riding's captive sandhills and a brief history of the migrating sandhills by David Aborn, an ornithology professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Then the group will caravan to the Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge in Birchwood to view some of the migratory flock. Tickets are $5 for members, $10 for nonmembers.

— A Cold One Beer Fest, featuring nine local brewers, four bands and a food truck, is 1-9 p.m. Saturday in the rail yard outside Moxy Chattanooga, 1220 King St. The $35 tickets include an 8-ounce pour from each beer vendor, plus a 12-ounce pour from your favorite when you sample them all. A $10 ticket, with drinks sold separately from Bar Moxy, also is available. Proceeds fund a scholarship for a Chattanooga State student majoring in hospitality.

— Harlem Globetrotters, the internationally known franchise whose superstar players revolutionized basketball, integrated the NBA and have entertained millions around the world, will bring their Spread Game Tour to McKenzie Arena, 720 E. Fourth St., at 2 p.m. Saturday. The tour is a tribute to the team's legendary Fred "Curly" Neal, who died in 2020. Tickets are $20-$347 for ages 2 and older, with additional charges for the celebrity court pass and player meet-and-greet opportunities.

— Warm Stories, Hot Cider, a storytelling olio featuring performers from Cleveland, Tennessee, and Dalton, Georgia, will be presented in the round 3-5 p.m. Saturday at the Walden's Ridge Civic League, 2501 Fairmount Pike, Walden. Free gingerbread and hot cider will be served. Admission is free; donations are welcome.

— Chickamauga Civil War Show, with exhibits of interest to shooters, collectors and Civil War enthusiasts, is 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday at the Dalton Convention Center, 2211 Dug Gap Battle Road, Dalton, Georgia. Tickets are $10 (free for children under 12).

— Bond Arts and Culture Series at Chattanooga State Community College, 4501 Amnicola Highway, continues 12:30-1:30 p.m. Tuesday with the second annual Black History Seminar, featuring a virtual presentation on "How To Speak Up — From Bystander to Participant" by Vanderbilt University's Felysha Jenkins, a Chattanooga native. She will teach a method for intervening when inappropriate comments are made. Admission is free, but register for the Zoom link.



— "Big Fish," a musical based on the 1998 novel by Daniel Wallace and 2003 film directed by Tim Burton, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the Humanities Theatre at Chattanooga State Community College, 4501 Amnicola Highway. The plot centers on a frustrated son trying to sort fact from fiction in his father's fanciful tales. Tickets are free, but reservations are required.

— Darci Lynne, a singer and ventriloquist who won Season 12 of "America's Got Talent" in 2017 at age 12, will bring her new tour, My Lips Are Sealed (Except When They're Not), to the Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St., at 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $32-$102.

— The Dinner Detective, an interactive comedy murder-mystery dinner show, plays 6-9 p.m. Saturday at Hotel Indigo, 300 W. Sixth St. Tickets are $60, which includes dinner, show and gratuity (tax and bar drinks extra). Shows are presented every other Saturday.

— "The Diviners," about a rural town seeking spiritual and physical nourishment, opens this weekend at The Venue Creekside, 527 W. Inman St., Cleveland, Tennessee. The production marks the return of Ocoee Theatre Company after a pandemic pause. Show time is at 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Feb. 4-5 and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday and Feb. 6. Tickets are $15.

— Sunday Showcase, featuring student performances in song, dance, instrumental music and theater, is at 4 p.m. Sunday at The Signal, 1810 Chestnut St. Tickets are $12 online, $15 at the door. Proceeds help fund the Performing Arts League's grants and scholarships to support youth involvement in the performing arts.

Contact Lisa Denton at or 423-757-6281.