Maker’s March, Falcons Football & the East Atlanta Strut.

Hello, local readers. Once again we’re here with your weekend guide, where we share our favorite things to do in and around Atlanta and point out where you can get free stuff along the way. As always, be sure to add anything we missed in the comments.

Maker’s March

Virginia Highlands. Saturday, 1pm – 7pm. $5 in advance; $10 at the door.

Make the rounds through the best of the Highlands all day Saturday (Neighbor’s Pub (1pm – 2pm), Hand in Hand (2pm – 3pm), Atkins Park (3pm – 4pm), Limerick Junction (4pm – 5pm), Dark Horse Tavern (5pm – 6pm) and Diesel (6pm – 7pm & After Party). Get your passport stamped at each bar for a chance to win prizes at the end of the night. Looking for an excuse to attend? How bout college football, $5 Maker’s Mark,  and the fact that a portion of the proceeds go to Small Dog Rescue. Presented by

More info and directions.

4th Annual Atlanta Arts Festival

Piedmont Park. Saturday, 10am – 7pm; Sunday, 10am – 6pm. Free.

Proving that festival season isn’t over yet, the Atlanta Arts Festival brings together 200 artists from across the country to display their works in mediums ranging from painting and sculpture to leather goods and blown glass. Festival goers can also enjoy artist demos and classes, live music and entertainment, and a variety of festival foods and drinks. This event has something for everyone!

More info and directions.

Atlanta Falcons vs. Arizona Cardinals

Georgia Dome. Sunday, 1pm. $55-$180.

It’s football time in Georgia! So grab your game gear, come out and support your Atlanta Falcons in their home opener against the Arizona Cardinals. It is Arizona’s first trip back to Atlanta since 2006. It is a mid-day game, so get their early so you can enjoy some morning tailgating. Nothing better than some food, some beer and hopefully a win to start this season right.

More info and directions.

East Atlanta Strut

East Atlanta Village. Saturday, 8am – 10pm. Free.

Now in its 13th year, the East Atlanta Strut is a “community organized, one-day festival, featuring music, art and events to raise money for neighborhood charities and organizations and support local businesses.” It kicks off with a 5K at 8am, followed by an artist market that opens at 10, a used book sale, a parade, a silent auction, a kids area, a mechanical bull, the Imperial OPA Circus and 50 bands playing on 5 stages throughout the day.

More info and directions.

JapanFest Atlanta

Gwinnett Center Convention Center. Saturday, 10 am-6 pm; Sunday, 10 am-5 pm. $8 (children 6 and under free).

The 24th Annual JapanFest tends to draw crowds of greater than 18,000 people, and aims to promote understanding between Japanese and Americans in the Southeast. With this year’s theme being called, “Discover Japan,” all of the exhibits serve to educate guests about the diverse regions and cultures found in the small country. Music and dance performances, martial arts demonstrations, workshops, and even an appearance from Japanese NASCAR racer Akinori Ogata are a few of the weekend’s activities. Also, look for promotional products like temporary tattoos, t-shirts, and toys, and make sure to sample some of the authentic Japanese cuisine presented by local vendors.

More info and directions.

Rock for Roots

Atlantic Station. Friday, 4pm – 11pm. Free.

With the addition of over 20,000 square feet of sod, Atlantic Station’s parking lot has been transformed into a green, outdoor music venue for this Friday’s Rock for Roots event. Partnering with DAVE FM, MX Energy and Patten Seed Company who contributed over 40,000 square feet of sod for both the event and for Park Pride Atlanta, the event offers live music from Atlanta-based musical groups and spotlights on local organizations working towards increasing Atlanta’s focus on environmental responsibility. As a bonus, green up your yard Saturday following the event. The sod used for the temporary green space will be given away to guests for personal use.

More info and directions.

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