Lowertown St. Paul has been on a roll lately. Several summers ago I would have only recommended a trip to the region for the Farmers' Market, or perhaps for a glass of wine at the Black Dog before heading over to the Ordway for a show. However, in the past couple of weeks Lowertown has hosted several notable gallery shows (including the political "Poster Offensive 4" and the gleefully nonsensical "Sword and Gnome Show"), a block party featuring national hip-hop group the Coup, as well as an RNC rush of activities. This weekend the celebration continues with the Concrete and Grass Festival at the small but woefully underused Mears Park. Three days will be filled with local music acts, including folk-y Haley Bonar, indies Chris Koza and Dosh, as well as the Melismatics, Little Man, and Mystery Palace. Hip-hopper M.Anifest will perform, along with classical groups like the Schubert Club and St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. For more info call 651.282.3000 or visit www.concreteandgrass.com.
Fri., Sept. 5, 5-10 p.m.; Sat., Sept. 6, 12-10 p.m.; Sun., Sept. 7, 12-8 p.m., 2008