For 16 years now, the Haw River Festival Learning Celebration has visited 28,000 fourth graders in the six counties connected by the river with a traveling educational caravan, employing puppets, music, science and art to illustrate the ecological worth of the Haw. Once a year, the Haw River Hootenanny hikes up in some local dive to buck up on money, support and awareness for the folks that help keep our river healthy. Paperhand Puppet Intervention, clown Mickey LePew, and a talk from Cynthia Crossen of the Haw River Watch Project are all on the slate for this year’s benefit on Friday, July 8 at Nightlight in Chapel Hill. The suggested donation is $7, and the fun starts at 7 p.m.; visit for info. Stick around for the rock show that follows at 10 p.m., as Baltimore’s Wilderness are a current indie buzz band and Raleigh’s STRANGE sports well-documented psychedelic power.