BY AMY ALLEN
Friday, March 27
The spring edition of the Ottawa Geek Market is back, and it’s equipped to meet all your geeky needs. Besides browsing the wares of dozens of exhibitors, you can also participate in a costume contest, test your superhero skills in the bouncy castle obstacle course, and join in on scavenger hunts and trivia nights. The event runs until March 29 at the Nepean Sportsplex. Ticket prices vary; see website for details.
On Friday night, the Irish Film Festival kicks off a weekend of award-winning Irish films. Featured flicks include Song of the Sea, an animated film about the Celtic myth of the selkie, a creature that lives as a seal but can become human on land; Gold, a story about a father who reconnects with his teenage daughter and ex-wife with disastrous results; and The Pipe, a documentary that chronicles the efforts of a small parish to shut down a proposed Shell Oil pipeline. On at Arts Court until March 29. Tickets start at $8.
Vancouver’s The Real McKenzies are well-known as one of the founders of the Celtic punk movement, consistently churning out Canadian and Scottish inspired songs. They perform at Mavericks on Friday night, joined by special guests Isotopes, The Scally Cap Brats, and Outrigger. Tickets start at $14.
Saturday, March 28
Celebrate the arrival of spring at Maple SugarFest, an annual festival held at Vanier’s Museopark that includes guided tours of the sugar bush, sleigh rides, and a variety of family activities. On Saturday, enjoy a pancake breakfast, French folk music, and a lumberjack contest. The festival runs until March 29. See website for complete schedule and pricing information.
The Arrogant Worms got their start on Queen’s University campus radio, and have since become Canada’s best-known musical comedy group. The trio pokes fun at everything from musical genres to aspects of daily life in Canada. They perform at the Shenkman Arts Centre on Saturday night. Tickets start at $38.
Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro follows the the titular protagonist as he tries to foil his employer, the lecherous Count Almaviva, in his advances toward Figaro’s bride-to-be. Set in Edwardian England, it’s a classic comic opera that’s brilliantly reimagined by Ottawa’s own Opera Lyra. It’s also the last night of its run, so be sure not to miss it! On at the National Arts Centre. Tickets start at $25.
Sunday, March 29
Folk singer-songwriter Karyn Ellis conveys her stories with thoughtful lyrics, fine guitar playing, and a sweet, delicate voice. She performs at Pressed on Sunday night. She’s joined by west-coast folk pop singer-songwriter Marina Marina. Tickets are $7.