Planet Weekend Picks, March 14-17

A young Einstein contestant at the 2013 PiDay.
A young Einstein contestant at the PiDay festivities in 2013.

Princeton is celebrating all things Pi this weekend with the annual Pi Day celebration. Downtown merchants are offering specials. For example the Ivy Inn is offering $3.14 off any purchase of $10 or more, Small World Coffee is selling its “braniac brew” (a double coffee with two extra shots of espresso) for $3.14, and Thomas Sweet is selling Pi chocolates for $3.14. For a full list of deals visit the Princeton Pi Day website.

Every year the Pi Day festivities get bigger and better, from author discussions to contests to musical performances. For a full listing of all the events with details, visit the Pi Day website. We’ve listed the times for the individual events in our weekend picks as well.

Friday, March 14

Pi Day Events

3:14 p.m. Walk a Pi Event at YMCA

3:14 p.m. Pizza Pi “Top Chef” Competition at Princeton Pi

3:14 p.m. Launch of Free Smart Phone Tour of Princeton & Einstein at

6 p.m. Academic Celebrity Pi Day Event with famed physicist A. Douglas Stone at the Princeton Public Library

8  p.m. Princeton Light Up the Night Event – at Community Park North Park

8 p.m. Outerbridge Ensemble, led by pianist, Steve Hudson at Arts Council of Princeton

Successes and Failures: What Can We Learn from the Sudan/South Sudan Peace Process? – Lecture by Princeton Lyman, former U.S. ambassador to Nigeria and South Africa. Lyman is currently a senior adviser at the U.S. Institute of Peace. 4:30, Dodds Auditorium, Robertson Hall, free.

Gallery 14 Art Exhibit and Opening Reception –  Opening reception for “Street Art Portraits,” an exhibit of 20 color prints featuring street art portraits by Miek Boltjes. Also  on display is “Autumn’s Beauties”, an exhibit of fallen leaves rearranged in new patterns by Rhoda Kassof-Isaac, a painter and photographer. Reception 6 to 8 p.m., 14 Mercer Street, Hopewell, free.

Sound Bites with the Arts Council of Princeton – Steve Hudson and Outer Bridge Ensemble performs jazz, funk, Afro-beat, Afro-Cuban, and more. 8 p.m. Tickets $10

Saturday, March 15

pidaydocPi Day Events

9 a.m. Pie Eating Contest at McCaffrey’s

10 a.m. Kids’ Violin Exhibition at the Princeton Public Library

11 a.m. Einstein Look A Like Contest at the Princeton Public Library

11 a.m. “Happy Birthday Einstein!” party at the Princeton Historical Society

12 p.m. International Puzzle Celebrity Guest: Tetsuya Miyamoto, inventor of KENKEN at the Princeton Public Library

12 p.m. Dinky Rides with Einstein at new Dinky Station

12 p.m. Academic Celebrity Book Signing with Jennifer Berne at Jazams

1 p.m. KENKEN Tournament for Teens (and other teen-spirited humans) at the Princeton Public Library

1 p.m. Pi Recitation Contest at the Princeton Public Library

1:30 p.m. Finding Pi – hands on activities for children 5 years old and up at the Princeton Public Library

2 p.m. Celebrity Book Party with Laura Overdeck at Labyrinth Books

2:15 p.m. Rubik’s Cube Interactive Demonstration at the Princeton Public Library

2:45 p.m. Pie Judging Event at Nassau Inn Tap Room

3:14 p.m. Pie Throwing Event at Palmer Square Green

3:14 p.m. Announcement of International Video Contest Winner on Facebook

3:30 p.m. Guided Einstein Tour begins at the Princeton Public Library

4 p.m. “Happy Birthday Einstein!” party at Historical Society of Princeton

4 p.m. Mega Chess Champion Demo and Free Style Play featuring chess champion David Hua

5 p.m. Pi Social and Concert at the Princeton Public Library

Science on Saturday at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory – “What Art Can Tell Us About the Brain?” presented by Margaret Livingstone, professor of neurobiology, Harvard University. For students, parents, teachers, and community members. Photo ID required. 9:30 a.m., Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Forrestal Campus, Route 1 North, Plainsboro, free.

Kate Spade New York Alex’s Lemonde Fundraiser – Enjoy 10 percent off your full price purchase from 10a.m. to 6p.m. and the Palmer Square store will donate that 10 percent to the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.

Art for Families at the Princeton University Art Museum – “Spirit Beasts: Ancient Chinese Tomb Guardians” at 10:30 a.m., free.

Princeton Pro Musica Concert at the Princeton University Chapel – Princeton Pro Musica continues its 35th season of choral masterworks with a concert featuring choral works of British composers. Beat the winter blues and lift your spirits with music from England by celebrated composers like John Rutter, Herbert Howells, John Tavener and Gerald Finzi sung by the 100-voice chorus and conducted by Dr. Ryan James Brandau. 8 p.m., tickets $25 and up.

Sunday, March 16

garymountFree Fruit Tree Pruning Demo at Terhune Orchards – Gary Mount presents a talk about pruning, new varieties of fruit trees suitable for planting by the homeowner, and the difference between various rootstocks. Cider and donuts will be served. Rain or shine. 1 p.m., 330 Cold Soil Road, Princeton, free.

Book Signing, “Cooking with Trader Joe’s Cookbook:  Lighten Up!” – Susan Greeley, M.S., R.D. will be signing her cookbook at the Princeton Barnes & Noble. Greeley puts the fun into low-fuss, gourmet  healthy meals with great shortcuts from Trader Joe’s. Her bestselling cookbook teaches how to make simple tweaks in the way you eat long term. 1 p.m., free.

Bollywood Dance Lesson at the Arts Council of Princeton – Free trial session for all ages with Uma Kapoor, 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Opening Reception for “Extraordinary Mash-ups” at the Arts Council of Princeton  – Ilya Genin’s Photographs of Cuba on display, reception 4 to 6 p.m., free.

Traditional Irish Music with McDermott’s Handy – Kathy DeAngelo and Dennis Gormley are the husband-wife duo who have been performing traditional Irish music together in the Delaware Valley as McDermott’s Handy since 1979. Princeton Public Library Community Room, 3 p.m.

Monday, March 17

A&BSt. Patrick’s Day Party at the Alchemist & Barrister – Irish music, Irish dancing, Guinness, Irish fare, and the annual Longbeard contest. Prizes for best beard and other categories. Benefit for Mercer Street Friends Food Bank.

From the first call of the bagpipes until the Parting Glass late that night, guests will enjoy Irish music, dancing, Irish fare by Executive Chef/Owner Arthur Kukoda and specialty cocktails, wine and beer. The winner of the Annual LongBeard Benefit will be announced with prizes for the Best Beard and other categories. Mercer Street Friends will receive the funds raised.

Since adopting the food bank as its permanent charity in October, the A&B has collected canned goods and funds to support Mercer Street Friends’ Send Hunger Packing Program that provides fresh, nutritious food for school children in Mercer County.

The event starts at noon and runs all day and evening. At 5 p.m., a piper leads guests into the A&B for a rousing night of Irish dancers, music by The Laundrymen and food and drink. Purchase a paper shamrock for $2 (3 for $5) that will be posted on the restaurant walls and the money goes to the food bank. Guests are also asked to bring canned foods to donate to Mercer Street Friends Food Bank such as tuna, cereal, and canned soup.

Magic and Comedy Show at the Princeton Public Library – Family show presented by Brian Richards, 3 p.m., community room, free.

Leif Ove Andsnes performs at McCarter Theatre – All Beethoven program on piano, 7:30 p.m., tickets $20 and up.