By Shelley Mann
Philips Arena in Atlanta is hosting two of the year's biggest concert events this weekend. R&B songstress Beyoncé will take the stage tonight, while country duo Tim McGraw and Faith Hill perform on Saturday.
Beyoncé Knowles, former lead singer of the best-selling girl group Destiny's Child, has achieved solo success with her chart-topping singles "Irreplaceable" and "Crazy in Love."
Husband-and-wife pair McGraw and Hill are stopping in town as part of their Soul2Soul Tour 2007. The two-and-a-half hour show will include several first-time musical performances by the couple, as well as hits such as "Live Like You Were Dying," "Breathe," "Don't Take the Girl" and "The Kiss."
Philips Arena is located at 1 Philips Drive in Atlanta. For more information, visit www.philipsarena.com.
Harry Potter parties
If you're a Harry Potter fan, there's only one way to spend the weekend - reading fast and furiously to find out how it all ends. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to pass the time until the book hits shelves at midnight tonight.
Catch back up on the series by watching one of the Gwinnett County Public Library's free screenings of "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" at noon and "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" at 3 p.m. today at the Suwanee branch, 361 Main St. in Suwanee. For more information, call 770-978-5154 or visit www.gwinnettpl.org.
Area bookstores are throwing book release parties for "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows." A party will run from 9 p.m. to midnight tonight at Books-A-Million at Discover Mills, 5900 Sugarloaf Parkway in Lawrenceville. Festivities will run from 6 p.m. to midnight tonight at all area Barnes and Noble locations, and from 7 p.m. to midnight at area Borders bookstores.
Non-night owls can check out Gwinnett Place Mall's Kidgits Club Harry Potter party, which will run from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the mall, 2100 Pleasant Hill Road in Duluth. The party will be held on the upper level near Waldenbooks.
Admission is free for all the Potter parties.
In the green
Get to know the county's newest parks during grand opening ceremonies on Saturday. Free events will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Sweet Water Park, located at 800 Bethesda School Road in Lawrenceville, and from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at DeShong Park, located at 2859 N. DeShong Road in Stone Mountain.
Sweet Water Park features a nearly 2,000-square-foot open air pavilion, as well as a tree-lined plaza area with seating and a 3⁄4-mile multi-purpose trail. DeShong Park will offer a two-acre open play area and a skate complex, among other things. The opening celebrations will include children's activities, inflatable slides and sports events.
For more information, call 770-822-8840.