Family reunions are usually stressful, what with relatives that seem to have beef predating your birth by decades and the amount of times you’ll be asked about your romantic life. The Cosmic Family Gathering, however, is a reunion of a different kind. While in previous years the music festival with a c. 1970 psychedelic aesthetic has been a more camping-centric event, 2018’s Gathering is more of a stay-cation, and will be hosted at the Big Sexy Brewing Company (5861 88th St. #800) from Aug. 31 through Sept. 2. You can listen to one of dozens of bands in their funk-and-folk-heavy lineup that includes primarily local acts like Ideateam, Jessica Malone, The Mindful, Mookatite, Todd Gardner Band, Dylan Crawford, and Big Sticky Mess. Of course, one of the big draws is close access to Big Sexy’s lineup of beers, whose heavy Tricky Ricky American Porter and BSBC Milk Stout (15 percent alcohol!) do the brewery’s name justice, and in terms of between-acts snacks, the Gathering will be bringing in a number of food trucks. Being a family gathering, little ones are welcome, too, and there will be a dedicated kids zone featuring an appearance by child entertainer and face-painter extraordinaire, Traveling Mermaid Ent (yes, really). For more activities and detailed schedule info on this free event, look up Cosmic Family Productions on Facebook.

**This write-up originally appeared in print on page 8 of issue #272 (Aug. 15 – 29, 2018) and has since been edited with up-to-date information.**