“A penny saved is a penny earned.”

— Benjamin Franklin, urging thrift with even the least valuable coin minted by the United States. On Aug. 8, 1786, the country adopted a system of coinage that included gold pieces worth $10, silver pieces worth $1 and 10 cents, and a copper penny.

The heat is rising, but the days of summer are dwindling for the second Saturday of August. But with the start of school just over two weeks away, it’s a good time for parents to start counting their pennies as they prepare to equip their children with all the clothes, supplies and other requirements they will need.

Meanwhile, it appears to be a good weekend to do some shopping, or to take that short vacation that you’ve been putting off. The local calendar of events has some openings available for free time, so now’s the time to take advantage of it.

Still, for those looking for things to do, a few options do exist.

Artful cooking

The Brownwood Art Association will be at Hastings from 1 to 4 p.m. to promote the book “Art of Cooking”. They will have samples of some of the recipes out for taste testing. Also, there will be painting.

Head Start Block Fest

Community Block Fest will be from 8 a.m. to noon at Brownwood Head Start, 1015 Old Bangs Road, Brownwood. The event will be free to the public. There will be prizes, games for children, and snow cones. Sponsored by CARR and CTO.

Early Band Boosters Golf

Registration for a tournament at Creekbend Golf Course begins at 8:30 a.m. Cost is $200 per team and $50 per person. Sponsored by the Early Band Boosters, the event will include door prizes and meals. For more information and questions call Julie Smith (325) 647-6673 or Steve Tiemann (manager) at (325) 748-4404.

Farmers Market open

The Brownwood Area Farmers Market is open this season from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m., over or until sell-out, each Wednesday and Saturday. It is located in the shade under the Bill Monroe Overpass (Austin Avenue) at Avenues A and Brady.

Special events

• The Heart of Texas Dance Club meets from 7 to 9 p.m. each Saturday at St. John’s Church, on Main and Depot, for open dance practice. Cost is $2 per person. Call 646-0048 or 646-0037 for information.

• The Lake Brownwood Lions Club, 6751 Highway 279, will host bingo at 1:30 p.m.

• The Brownwood Amateur Radio Club’s Volunteer Examiner team hold test sessions at 10 a.m. at the Red Cross building, 600 E. Adams, Brownwood. Visit www.k5bwd.org for information about club events.