Houston's Epicurean Evening The Houston Restaurant Association offers a "100-course meal" for $20. Food samples ranging from the four-star to fast food will be proffered as restaurateurs from the Rainbow Lodge and Taco Bell serve snacks from fancy booths. While foodies enjoy the varied fare, food booths will be judged in three categories: most extravagant, best execution of restaurant design (that is, how well a booth echoes the restaurant's theme) and most original. Foodies can also enjoy live and silent auctions throughout the evening. 59 p.m. (A portion of the proceeds goes to the Texas Special Olympics and to scholarship funds for the UH Hilton College.) George R. Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenida de las Americas. For more information, call 802-1200. $20; free, children under six. (Advance tickets at Randall's stores.)
The Spin Doctors My, how time flies: the Spin Doctors are already making a comeback. After selling six million copies of their debut album and having the number one most-played song on American radio, the Doctors come to Party on the Plaza. The opening act is power-pop band Lustre. From after work until after dark. Jones Plaza, 600 Louisiana. Free.
Sugimoto: Photography, Buddhism and Time Peter Jay Zweig, UH prof, award-winning architect and author, has been chosen to give a gallery talk on Hiroshi Sugimoto's photography. I couldn't tell you anything about Sugimoto's work except that it is solemn and soothing and that he imbues images of seascapes and Buddhas with a dignity that makes one feel small. But no doubt Zweig can explain all this in a detailed, rigorous way. 7 p.m. Contemporary Arts Museum, 5216 Montrose, 526-0773. Free.
Oliver! "Consider yourself... invited!" to the ninth production from Bach to Broadway, the music ministry of South Main Baptist Church. This year, the summer show is Oliver!, the six-Oscar-winning musical by Lionel Bart. The can-I-have-another-bowl-of-gruel-please-sir tale will be presented in "dessert theatre format." 7:30 p.m. tonight and Friday. South Main Baptist Church, Fellowship Hall, 4100 Main, 529-4167. $6. Tickets must be reserved in advance; no tickets will be sold at the door. Childcare available for children under four.
Camelot In its "20th year of making musical magic," the Lone Star Performing Arts Association presents Lerner and Lowe's King Arthur story. Just like the duo's My Fair Lady, Camelot is full of memorable songs. The talented Lone Star cast will sing classics such as "C'est Moi," "How to Handle a Woman," "If Ever I Would Leave You," and the title number. (Which should not be confused with the Monty Python version; the lyrics of this one contain no reference to having to push the pram a lot.) The Lone Star cast, it should be noted, is not all Texan -- Ben George, an English actor who's performed both in London's West End and on Broadway, is here in the role of the good King. 8 p.m. tonight, Friday and Saturday. Galveston Island Outdoor Musicals, Mary Moody Northen Amphitheatre, Galveston Island State Park, Galveston, (800) 54-SHOWS. $19$29.
Darden Smith Ooh, he's such a pretty thing, and yet his songs have such an attitude -- not a surly attitude, mind you; just a spirited, greedy "All I Want Is Everything" attitude. The country singer plays two shows, 8 (smoke-free) and 10 p.m. McGonigel's Mucky Duck, 2425 Norfolk, 528-5999. $10.
The Stories of I.C. Eason, King of the Dog People Houston-based photographer Blair Pittman's new book covers the life of a Big Thicket civic leader and poacher. Even more of Eason's life will be revealed in tonight's multimedia presentation. 810 p.m. Greenway Plaza. To register, call Leisure Learning Unlimited, 877-1981, and ask for class number 1810. $25.
Visions: The Women's Expo The third annual for-women expo is all over the Astrohall for no purpose other than the entertainment, inspiration and education of women (and their families). Speakers will speak (including Olympic speed skater Bonnie Blair, at 2 p.m. Saturday), cooking will be demonstrated and booths will offer information on children's health, careers and environmental issues. Noon6 p.m. today; 10 a.m.6 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.6 p.m. Sunday. Each day, free two-hour childcare for kids ages three through eight and out of diapers. Astrohall, Astrodomain. For more information, call 521-4392. $6; $5, seniors.
The Wild Party Another new theater company debuts, and the first production from Shirk Workers Union is "a happening" based on Joseph Moncure March's jazz-age poem. (You know, it's the one that begins: "Queenie was a blonde and her age stood still / And she danced twice a day in Vaudeville.") Director Vicki Weathersby immodestly describes the evening as "an hysterical, sexy, postmodern Gatsby-affair-cum-urban rave." 9 p.m. tonight and Saturday, and Thursday through Saturday next weekend. Curtain preceded by live jazz and other performances. Union Headquarters, 2500 Summer Street, 788-0671. $5.99.