GODSMACK COMESTO RIVERBEND; GROENING AT WEXNER CENTER

Cincinnati

What: Godsmack, with Drowning Pool, Five Finger Death Punch

When: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 17 Where: Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg

Ave. Cost: $45-$65 More info: (513) 232-6220 or www.riverbend.org

The Scoop: Godsmack released its fi fth album, “The Oracle,” last

May. Verdict: Godsmack was one of the most popular and commercially

successful bands of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Worth the

trip?: Opening is the popular hard rockers Drowning Pool, with Ryan

McCombs, the permanent replacement vocalist after the untimely

death of Dave Williams. They released their fourth album,

self-titled, last April. What:

Cleveland

Cavaliers vs. Philadelphia 76ers

When: 7 p.m. Oct. 19 Where: U.S. Bank Arena, 100 Broadway St. Cost:

$28-$128 More info: (513) 562-4949, or www.usbankarena.com The

Scoop: The

Cleveland

Cavaliers and the Philadelphia 76ers

come to Cincinnati for a special preseason game, one week before

the regular season opens. Verdict: Since the Cincinnati Royals (now

the Sacramento Kings) moved away in 1972, this is a rare

opportunity for Southwest Ohioans to see an NBA game in their

neighborhood. Worth the trip?: Be sure to bring all your old LeBron

James jerseys. You never know, there might be a public burning.

What: TwiNight: From Dracula to Edward When: Oct. 15-16. 8 p.m.

Friday, and 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday

Where: The Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St.

Cost: $26

More info: (513) 977-4123 or www.cincinnatiarts.org/aronoff

The Scoop: An evening of dance that chronicles the last 100

years or so of pop culture vampires, complete with

period-appropriate sets, costumes and choreography.

Verdict: Before reaching Edward, it’s possible that Generation

Xers may relive their own embarrassing obsessions with Louis and

Lestat.

Worth the trip?: Despite the gore that frequently pops up in

vampire lore, we’re assured that this is a family-friendly

show.

What: Q102 Bosom Ball Sound Check Party, with Crystal Bowersox

When: 4 and 6 p.m. Oct. 21 Where: The Madison Theater, 728 Madison

Ave., Covington Cost: $10-$25 More info: (859) 491-2444 or

www.madisontheateronlin e.com.

The Scoop: Local radio station Q102 is doing its part during

Breast Cancer Awareness Month with this annual event, having raised

more than $100,000 for Tri-State breast cancer charities

already.

Verdict: This night of music features a full lineup of

chanteuses, capped by Crystal Bowersox, the runner-up fi nalist on

“American Idol” Season 9.

Worth the trip?: The 4 p.m. show is the sound check party, so

those younger than 21 can catch a glimpse of the talent.

What: Screeching Weasel When: 8 p.m. Oct 15 Where: The Madison

Theater, 728 Madison Ave., Covington Cost: $20 More info: (859)

491-2444 or www.madisontheateronline. com. The Scoop: The seminal

punk band reformed last year after nearly a 10-year hiatus, albeit

with many recriminations and without co-founding member John

Jughead.

Verdict: That being said, Ben Weasel is still the front-man

along with longtime guitarist Danny Vapid.

Worth the trip?: The band is said to have been a major infl

uence on Green Day and Blink-182.

What: Northern Kentucky Wine Festival When: 3 to 10 p.m. Oct. 16

Where: MainStrasse Village, Covington Cost: $10 admission More

info: (859) 491-0458 or www.mainstrasse.org. The Scoop: This fest

will feature Kentucky wines along with local food, artisans and

live music. Verdict: The admission fee gets you a souvenir glass

and four starter tickets. After that, tickets are $1 individually

or 6 for $5. Worth the trip?: MainStrasse is a picturesque,

historic village with lots of great night spots and ambience, ideal

for slightly older revelers who’ve moved on from the “just point me

to the keg” phase.

Columbus

What: An Evening with Matt Groening When: 7 p.m. Oct. 16 Where:

Wexner Center for the Arts, 1871 N. High St. Cost: Free, but

tickets required More info: (614) 292-3535, or www.wexarts.org.

The Scoop: Matt Groening will discuss his career in comics and

television as part of the 2010 Festival of Cartoon Art.

Verdict: Groening is the creator of “Life in Hell,” “Futurama,”

and, of course, “The Simpsons,” still the gold standard of TV

comedy and satire (animated or otherwise).

Worth the trip?: Come see if he really is a bald,

gibberish-spewing guy with an eyepatch (as once depicted on the

show).