Around Town: District offices closed

Connie Hodges

Merced High School Distict will have a districtwide staff development day and all sites will be closed all day today and from 8 to 9:30 a.m. and on Tuesday. For more information, call (209) 385-6420.


Music in the Park

Courthouse Park, 21st and M streets, will host Music in the Park every Friday night from 6 to 8 through Sept. 9. Come to hear the music, shop, dine, taste wine, tour art galleries and see live theatre.


Cotton Festival

The Dos Palos Cotton Festival will take place today, Saturday and Sunday at the park on Center Street between Blossom and Eucalyptus streets. Today's festival features the carnival, food, craft booths and a beer garden from 5 p.m. to midnight and live entertainment from 8:30 to 11 p.m. Saturday's schedule includes food, craft booths and beer garden from 10 a.m. to midnight, live entertainment from 8 to 10 p.m., horseshoe tournament and men's and women's slow pitch softball tournament all day. On Sunday, craft booths, a carnival, food booths and the beer garden will be open from 10 a.m. to midnight. The horseshoe and softball tournaments begin at noon. For more information, call (209) 761-5422.


Children entertained

It's all the rage, just ask a preschooler. The Merced County Arts Council is pleased to present children's performances at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday at the Merced Multicultural Arts Center, 645 W. Main St. This month is Rhythm Magic with Michael Bayard. Tickets are $5 for children and parents are free. For more information, or to find out how you can support this program, call (209) 388-1090.


Potters Place barbecue

St. Matthew Baptist Church Potters Place Program will host a barbecue dinner from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday at the Eastern Star Building, 8th and M streets. Enjoy some finger lickin', mouth waterin', devil-kicking ribs, links and chicken. Single meat or combination meat plate. Cost is $10 per dinner. For more information call (209) 384-9547.


Backpack funds

The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service Center is hosting a fundraiser to purchase backpacks for all the deaf and hard of hearing children in Merced, Mariposa and Madera counties. Fried chicken, Spanish rice, green salad, roll and drink will be served from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 9 at 3337 M St. Cost is $5 for pre-paid tickets and $7 at the door. For more information, call (209)726-7783 or go to DHHSC.ORG.

If you would like to have your event announced in the Around Town Column, send your information to Connie Hodges at least one week prior to the event, at Items run according to space available.