Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Check out five fun events happening in Boston this weekend, including Joyce Carol Oates, American Field, and the Boston Comedy Arts Fest.

jill greenberg

From Left: “Deniability,” “Grand Old Party,” and “The Rapture Index” by Jill Greenberg. / Via Clark Gallery

“Variations on a Theme” at Clark Gallery

To see a collection of works made from multiple mediums and that evoke a range of emotions—from peace and wonder to pure agony (see above)—check out the current exhibit “Variations on a Theme” at Clark Gallery, where the works of 10 different artists will inspire and entertain. Perhaps the most outstanding are a set of pigment photographs by Jill Greenberg, which depict young children in states of great distress.

On view through September 30, gallery hours Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Clark Gallery, 145 Lincoln Road, Lincoln, 781-259-8303,

Boston Comedy Arts Fest

This annual festival hosted by ImprovBoston kicked off Wednesday, and there’s only more riotous laughter to be had throughout the weekend. Shows ranging from sketch to improv to standup will take place at ImprovBoston, the Brattle, and Oberon theaters. And while every session is likely to tickle the funny bone, we’ve got our eye on Friday night’s Big Variety show with Big Bang and Magnet TourCo.

Prices vary, September 10-14, see website for schedule, locations, and tickets:

Joyce Carol Oates at Brookline Booksmith

The noted author will visit Coolidge Corner on Thursday night to promote her latest work, Lovely, Dark, Deep: Stories, which came out on Tuesday. The collection of 13 short stories are all at once mysterious, disturbing, obsessive, and fascinating. As the back cover touts, they “map the eerie darkness within us all.” $5 tickets or free with book purchase ($26), Thursday, September 11, 6 p.m., Coolidge Corner Theatre, 290 Harvard St., Brookline, 617-734-2500,

American Field

An annual event that places emphasis on purchasing American-made products, American Field is a two-day pop-up exhibition and market where brands can show their locally crafted goods. In addition to the shopping, visitors will also find food trucks, a beer garden with Harpoon, and live music.

Saturday and Sunday, September 13 and 14, 10 a.m-6 p.m., Innovation and Design Building, 21-25 Drydock Ave., Boston,

Riverfest at Assembly Row

After a successful opening summer season, Assembly is celebrating the end of summer with Riverfest, a day-long festival with music, art, food, children’s activities, and fireworks. No excuses—now that the new Assembly Row T stop is up and running, getting to Assembly Row is easier than ever.

Saturday, September 13, 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Assembly Row and Sylvester Baxter Riverfront Park, Somerville,