YES! Weekly’s top ten things to do on a rainy day

by Amy Kingsley

Go to an art gallery

Since spring arrived this year with sleet, drizzle and 42-degree highs, kite flying might not be on the agenda for a couple more weeks. In the meantime, take advantage of a number of local galleries featuring works by high caliber artists. The Cultural Arts Center on Davie Street houses the Green Hill Gallery and Center for Visual Arts among others and the storied Weatherspoon sits right at the edge of UNCG’s campus at Tate Street and Spring Garden Street.

Indulge in a free flick

One glance at our calendar listings has convinced me that in addition to bringing allergies, spring is also high season for free movies. The movies are not only free, they also tend to be of the art/foreign variety. You know, the ones that don’t usually make it to Greensboro theaters until after they’ve won a handful of Academy Awards. Guilford College’s International Studies Film Festival will have run its course by the time this issue hits the stands, but film fans can catch the Mexican film Without a Trace at UNCG March 29. Others will undoubtedly follow.

Go to a $2 movie

If your washing machine shook a handful of change out of your jeans’ pockets and your film tastes run more toward the blockbuster variety, I would suggest running down to the Sedgefield Crossing $2 Cinema. Actually, the films running there right now look pretty good (except for Cheaper by the Dozen 2; I think I’ll skip that). King Kong, Chronicles of Narnia and Walk the Line can all be enjoyed in one day for less than the cost of a first-run movie.

Browse a book store

Whenever my dad ran out of ideas for how to entertain his children on the weekends, he would take us to a bookstore. As a child, I think this exercise was more fun for him than us, and we would often beg to leave after a couple of hours only to find him completely engrossed in something he’d plucked from the shelves. As I’ve grown up, I think I’ve inherited this propensity to spend hours among the dusty shelves of a used book store. There are a few good ones in town, check them out and see what you can find.


This is a natural follow up to the last listing. Once you have found the book you want to read, indulge your inner hermit for a few hours. I find curling up with my cat and a book a particularly soothing way to spend rainy days.

Go see live music

Whether you enjoy bar bands, indie rock, hip hop, jazz or classical, chances are there is a performance you can attend. Greensboro’s local music scene gets bigger and more eclectic every year and audience support is critical for our little burg to shake its ‘“Greenboring’” moniker. Even if the show is mediocre, ticket prices rarely rise above bargain basement, so bring a few bucks and support local music.


Silkscreening ‘— the art of embellishing T-shirts, CD cases, patches or whatever with permanent ink ‘— is another option for those who wish to avoid passive media consumption during the rainy season. Local artists and musicians will soon have a resource in the Greensboro Community Arts Collective Print Studio. I don’t know when the studio will open, but until it is screening supplies and instructions can be had relatively cheaply from local crafts stores.

Enjoy some live theater

If you carefully peruse the calendars of local theaters, you can often find ‘“pay what you can’” performances geared toward citizens who might not go normally go see plays. Right now, the Guilford College theater department is running ‘“Marisol’” by Jose Rivera. ‘“Brother Wolf,’” an Appalachian rendition of Beowulf, is in the middle of a three week run at Triad Stage. Bennett College, NC A&T University, UNCG, the Broach Theater and several other companies have offerings worth checking out.

Attend a reading

If you don’t feel like doing the reading yourself, students in UNCG’s creative writing program will be happy to do it for you. The faculty Center at UNCG and St. Mary’s House often host both alumni and graduate student readings. Events for this week include Camille Dungy, an alumnus who will be reading poetry at the Faculty Center March 30, and an MFA Thesis reading at St. Mary’s House March 31. A complete listing of readings can be found at the website

Go to a lecture

Greensboro is home to five institutions of higher education, and in any given week you can usually find a variety of lectures associated with these campuses. Experts from around the country in fields ranging from literature, history, agriculture and physics regularly loop through our fair city. So, if the weather isn’t conducive to working on your tan, try working on your knowledge instead.