There’s a lot to do in Charleston this week and next as some summer productions occupy some of those air conditioned theaters, plus there are two free days at area museums that give you and the family an artistic fix for the week.

Great for visitors and locals alike!

Gibbes Museum

Today is Second Sunday downtown, which means King Street will be full of people chatting with each other, walking their dogs and generally checking out the town.

Think of the old fashioned promenade but in flip-flops and shorts, a few hot dogs, and pizza.

Around the corner on Meeting Street, the Gibbes Museum of Art is celebrating by allowing free admission to their exhibits, and for one, “The Rice Plantation Series: Watercolors by Alice Ravenel Huger Smith,” it’s the last day to see it.

These are iconic water-colors by Smith, an early artist who set the standard for many of today’s work- ing watercolorists in Charleston.

Her subjects are draping oaks full of moss, swamp landscapes and Charleston garden scenes.

Also on view will be the “People’s Choice: A Community-Curated Exhibition” in the Main Gallery.

There also will be a book signing in the museum shop with Monica Karales as she celebrates the release of the book documenting the life of her late husband.

The book is “Controversy and Hope: The Civil Rights Photographs of James Karales,” by Julian Cox with Rebekah Jacob and Monica.

Hours are 1-5 p.m.

Playwright’s Festival

It’s the last day of What If’s second annual Playwright’s Festival, which means much of the mayhem is over but there is still good work to catch.

Kyle Barnette has orchestrated this event to give new, local playwrights a chance to see their plays produced.

This year’s play is by Tyler Stuart and involves two brothers, a feckless mom, brain tumors, sperm banks and homeless astronauts in a comedic stew that sure to be as absurd as it is funny.

Even though the festival is ending, “The Practice Child” continues its run at the Threshold Theatre at 8 p.m. July 18-20 and at 6 p.m. July 21.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased through


Pure Theatre delayed the opening of “Annapurna” by a week, and it is now set to preview the Summer Slam production Thursday and open Friday for a run through Aug. 17.

This show features Pure partners and founders Sharon Graci and Rodney Lee Rogers in a play about a man and woman who were once married rediscovering each other after a 20-year separation.

Ulysses is in a rundown trailer overlooking Colorado’s Mount Gunnison and Emma looks in him for the man she once knew.

It’s a poignant play, and because Graci and Rogers are married in real life, they are able to stretch the boundaries of feelings, and dig deep into this production about life and death and a love that picks up where two people left off.

Since both Graci and Rogers are pretty intense, it’s likely that they have had some interesting discussions around the dinner table as they gear up for this play.

The shows are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday. General admission tickets are $30 and can be purchased either online at or by phone at 723-4444. The theater is at 477 King St. in downtown Charleston.

Children’s Museum

Finally, the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry will have a free day 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. July 22, thanks to Cigna.

The day will give more children in the community opportunity to explore the Young Architects summer exhibit and have some hands-on activities.

Visitors can race boats down rapids, climb aboard a Lowcountry pirate ship and drive an antique fire truck.

Families can find gems under a waterfall and create inspired masterpieces in a dedicated Art Room.

It’s a great time to see what the museum has to offer, and look at its upcoming events for fall. The museum is at 25 Ann St. in downtown Charleston.

Reach Stephanie Harvin at 937-5557 or