As part of The Baltimore Sun's Fall Arts Guide, we're picking the best arts activities coming to the area this fall. Here are the best eclectic events on the horizon, from festivals to comedians and more.

For more, see best bets for: pop music | theater | classical music | visual art | dance | books | film | eclectic | suburban events.



The Harry Potter celebration to end all Harry Potter celebrations: three days of panels, cosplay, dance parties, vendors and general hobnobbing among the muggles. With a guest list from the films that includes Natalia Tena (Nymphadora Tonks), and Chris Rankin (Percy Weasley). Sept. 8-10 at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace, 202 E Pratt St. $20-$1,585. potterversecon.com.

Erik Greenawalt of Pittsburgh pays tribute to Cal Ripken Jr. for his artwork in the first Madonnari Arts festival in Little Italy.
Erik Greenawalt of Pittsburgh pays tribute to Cal Ripken Jr. for his artwork in the first Madonnari Arts festival in Little Italy. (Amy Davis / Baltimore Sun)

Madonnari Arts Festival

Intricate and often stunning sidewalk chalk paintings are the visual highlights of this annual festival in Little Italy, which also features plenty of food and wine (it's Little Italy, so what did you expect?), plus performances from such groups as the Baltimore Mandolin Quartet and the Annapolis Shakespeare Company. 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Sept. 8, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sept 9-10 along South High Street. Free. littleitalymadonnari.com.

Maryland Seafood Festival

For a half-century, one of Maryland's most savory traditions, a testimony to the delicious things that come out of the Chesapeake Bay. Steamed crabs, anyone? Yes, please! Includes an appearance by Jimmy Riffle of Animal Planet's "Gator Boys," with his traveling road show, "Scales, Tails and Teeth," plus the 27th annual Crab Soup Cook-off. 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sept. 9, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sept. 10 at Sandy Point State Park, off U.S. Route 50 just west of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in Annapolis. $10-$65. abceventsinc.com/maryland-seafood-festival.

Ralphie May

The "Last Comic Standing" alum (he finished second in 2003) and featured comic on Netflix (see his "Unruly" special from 2015) will be looking for laughs at Magooby's Joke House, 9603 Deereco Road in Timonium. 8 p.m. Sept. 14, 7:30 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. Sept. 15-16. $25-$50. magoobys.com.

Baltimore Comic-Con

Scores of comic-book lovers from all over will descend on the Baltimore Convention Center, 1 W. Pratt St., for a celebration of all the great storytelling that can be done panel-by panel — and the franchises these works have spawned. Includes appearances by dozens of comic-book pros (mainly artists), the chance to meet comics legend Frank Miller (who had a major hand in making "The Dark Knight" a thing) and even a concert by Maryland resident Lynda Carter, TV's Wonder Woman nonpareil. 1 p.m.-7 p.m. Sept. 22, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sept. 23, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sept. 24. $25-$35 daily, $65-$150 for a three-day pass. Tickets for Friday's Lynda Carter concert are $35-$1,000. baltimorecomiccon.com.

Image from "The Price is Right Live"- Original Credit: Handout art
Image from "The Price is Right Live"- Original Credit: Handout art (/ HANDOUT)

‘The Price is Right Live!’

Baltimore, come on down! Check out this on-the-road edition of the longest-running game show in TV history, maybe get the chance to play Plinko, Cliffhangers or the Big Wheel (not to mention competing for the fabulous Showcase Showdown), maybe even win a car! Just try not to get too excited. 8 p.m. Oct. 6 at the Modell Lyric, 140 W. Mount Royal Ave. $26-$46. modell-lyric.com.

Fell’s Point Fun Festival

A tradition dating back to the late '60s, this year's edition promises less of the "carnival feel" of recent years and more emphasis on "the many artisans and business owners that live within" Fells Point. Long as that includes mussels at Bertha's and records (or CDs) at Sound Garden, we're OK with it. Starts at 11 a.m. Oct. 7-8 at and around the intersection of Broadway and Thames Street. Free. fellspointfest.net.

From Rise Against to Jay-Z, the Baltimore-area concerts schedule for the fall is packed with a wide range of concerts not to miss.

David Sedaris

A storyteller of the first order — you've certainly heard his hilarious tale of playing a Christmas elf at Macy's, but his repertoire is so much fuller than just that — brings his insight and humor to the Hippodrome, 12 N. Eutaw St. 7 p.m. Oct. 12. $51-$86.50. france-merrickpac.com.


Beers and bears, now there's a hard combo to ignore. Come to the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore on Oct. 21 and, for $15-$65, enjoy unlimited samplings of more than 30 brews, plus German-inspired fare (expect the wurst) and other fun stuff. Noon-4 p.m. at the zoo, 1 Safari Place in Druid Hill Park. marylandzoo.org.

Ten best bets for the fall theater season in Baltimore, including plays by Lynn Nottage, Lucas Hnath, a Marc Blitzstein classic and the musical "The Color Purple."

Brick Fest Live

It's billed as the "Lego fan experience," and they're not kidding. Lego lovers get to build with 'em, admire some truly impressive creations, buy some to add to their collections — hey, if it's at all about Lego, it's here. So creative. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 4-5 at the Maryland State Fairgrounds, 2200 York Road in Timonium. $20-$39, free for kids 2 and under. brickfestlive.com.