By Eugene Magazine

Support local organizations this weekend at performing arts season openers, benefits, and trivia nights.

The Cake

Opening Oregon Contemporary Theatre’s 2019/2020 season, The Cake, a comedy by Bekah Brunstetter, will take the stage starting Wednesday. In the story, a baker’s faith and family are at odds when she’s asked to make a cake for her best friend’s daughter. Buy your tickets in advance on their website or at the door.

Opening Wednesday through Oct. 13 | Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, 7:30 pm; Sundays, 2 pm | Oregon Contemporary Theatre, 194 W Broadway | $15-$42 | octheatre.org

Eugene Symphony Opening Night

The Eugene Symphony is opening their season on Thursday with Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony. Francesco Lecce-Chong will conduct, with Bella Hristova on violin. The Symphony will also perform Kenji Bunch’s Groovebox Vibrations and Max Bruch’s Scottish Fantasy.

Thursday | 7:30 pm | Hult Center, 1 Eugene Center | $59.50-$70.75 | eugenesymphony.org

USA BMX Gold Cup Championship

The Emerald Valley BMX track is hosting the USA BMX Gold Cup Championship Northwest this weekend. Come to see all ages compete for the chance to win. This event counts scores from two other Gold Cup events in addition to scores earned this weekend for the win.

Friday through Sunday | See website for schedule | Emerald Valley BMX, 2715 Leo Harris Pkwy. | Free admission | usabmx.com

Paddle Battle 2019

This Saturday, Looking Glass is hosting their annual Paddle Battle, a table tennis competition with proceeds benefitting Lane County youth and families. Play singles or doubles in their “Pro” or “Amateur” brackets for the chance to win some great prizes. Sign up your team on their website or at the event.

Saturday | 9 am | Eugene Family YMCA, 2055 Patterson St. | $25-$50 | lookingglass.us

Florence Festival of Books

If you love books, be it reading them, publishing them, or just inhaling their unique smell, the Florence Festival of Books will be your haven this weekend. Learn about new titles, meet publishers, and attend a talk by author Bob Welch. There will also be a free educational panel about the ins and outs of publishing.

Saturday, 7 pm; Sunday, 10 am | Florence Events Center, 715 Quince St., Florence | Free admission | florencefestivalofbooks.org

Talon, Tastings, and Tidbits Annual Event

Marking their 30th year in the Pacific Northwest, the Cascades Raptor is hosting their annual benefit, with proceeds supporting their continued efforts to rehabilitate raptors and provide nature education. At the event, visit with avian ambassadors while enjoying gourmet appetizers paired with wine, cider, beer, or mead. There will also be a silent auction and a river of desserts. Get your tickets on their website.

Saturday | 6 pm | Lane Community College Center for Meeting and Learning, 4000 E 30th Ave. | cascadesraptorcenter.org

Randy Rainbow Live!

Emmy-nominated comedian, actor, singer, writer, and satirist, Randy Rainbow, is coming to the Hult Center on Friday, bringing his YouTube show to the live stage. Come for musical parodies and political spoofs that will have you laughing.

Sunday | 8 pm | Hult Center, 1 Eugene Center | $35-$62.50 | hultcenter.org

Downtown Whiteaker Tree and Nature Walk

Join Friends of Trees for a nature walk through downtown Eugene and the Whiteaker neighborhood. See the large trees through the floodplain neighborhoods and new trees being trialed for climate change.

Tuesday | 5 pm | Start at REI, 306 Lawrence St. | Free | rei.com

Science Pub and trivia

Beyond Toxics and the Walama Restoration Project are joining forces to host a Science Pub and trivia night at Wildcraft Cider works on Tuesday. Join them for trivia, as well as an update on Bee City USA and the Monarch Monitoring Project.

Tuesday | 5:30 pm | WildCraft Cider Works, 232 Lincoln St. | Free admission | wildcraftciderworks.com

Next week: Holiday Food and Gift Festival

Be inspired and collect gift ideas for this year’s upcoming holiday season at the 24th Annual Holiday Food and Gift Festival next weekend. Visit the more than 100 booths, which will cover art, crafts, jewelry, clothing, décor, and much more. There will also be a large gourmet food area where you can sample and purchase items for all your party needs.

October 4-6 | Friday, 12 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 10 am | Lane Events Center, 796 W 13th Ave. | Free admission | hfgf.com