Peak August

Five events to get you through the dog days of summer

Kris Kristofferson performs August 21 at the Harris Center for the Arts.

Kris Kristofferson performs August 21 at the Harris Center for the Arts.

Photo courtesy of Harris Center for the Arts

It’s August, the hottest time of year, and a time known as the dog days of summer.

The phrase, in modern speak, refers to the hot, lazy end of season. Historically, its meaning is rooted in centuries past: the Dog Days of Summer was the period following the rising of the Sirius star system, the so-called Dog Stars, part of the Canis Majoris constellation. It was also a time ancient astrologers associated with extreme summer weather, lethargy and even insanity.

If that sounds like late summer in Sacramento, we’ve got you.

In the spirit of pulling you away from your perch in front of the air conditioning, here are five August events to keep you coolly entertained.

Come clean

Have skeletons in your closet but not quite ready to go public with them? Find inspiration at this show hosted by the STAB! Comedy Theater. Confessions of the Garbage People is just that: six participants—appropriately dubbed the “Garbage People”—sharing their deepest, darkest secrets. Each person drops a written confession into a box to have it selected and read by another person. Then, everyone will try to guess who did exactly what. Awkward hilarity is sure to ensue. 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2; $8; STAB! Comedy Theater. 1710 Broadway;

Soak it up

With its quirky cool art and venue warehouse space, Beatnik Studios is part of downtown Sac’s Southside Park artistic and cultural Renaissance. On Friday, it hosts Absorbed: Summer Edition as a final reception for Desert Songs, a desert-themed exhibit featuring Erica Avila, Joshua Tremain and Felicia Gabaldon. The closing event will include music from Jon Bafus, Ross Hammond and Jon Raskin as well as a performance from the Capitol Dance Project. There will also be food and drink, including boozy concoctions from the Jungle Bird and brews from Urban Roots Brewing & Smokehouse. Bonus: Your ticket includes food and an open bar. 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2; $35 advance, $40 door; Beatnik Studios, 723 S St.;

Space jams

Montreal’s premier indie chamber rock band with a hipster name, Godspeed You Black Emperor, visits Ace of Spades for what’s sure to be a sprawling and spacey soundscape of a night. The band’s 2000 debut Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven is a modern classic, comprising of only four epic sonic numbers, the longest clocking in at 22 minutes. 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 20; $27; Ace of Spades, 1417 R St.;

Catch a legend

Legendary singer-songwriter Kris Kristofferson brings Merle Haggard’s backing band, the Strangers, to Folsom for a show that draws on his rich pop-country catalog. Kristofferson’s prolific career includes songs such as “Help Me Make It Through the Night,” and “Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down.” He’s also an actor and starred in the 1976 version of A Star is Born with Barbra Streisand. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 21; $55-$85; Harris Center for the Arts, 10 College Parkway in Folsom;

History revisited

The California Museum is one of Sacramento’s not-so-secret gems. Located downtown, it offers a wealth of exhibits and events that spotlight the state’s history, accomplishments and milestones. Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals under Siege, which opened in late July and runs through Dec. 29, documents the censorship, whitewashing (literally and figuratively) and destruction of Southern California’s Chicana/o mural scene. With photographs, mural fragments and other documents, it chronicles vital Mexican-American representation. Artists include Barbara Carrasco, Willie F. Herrón III and the East Los Streetscapers. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon-5 p.m. Sunday; $6.50-$9, Free for children 5 and under; California Museum, 1020 O St.;