As virtually all Nation readers know, there are literally hundreds of events being planned to greet the Republican delegates when the GOP arrives in New York City to convene at the end of August. Kicking off the anticipated protests, panels, presentations and parties is this Friday’s Beyond Bush: A Night of Visionary Resistance, taking place at Hunter College in Manhattan.

The keynote event of the Life After Capitalism Festival, this evening features talks by some of the most inspiring dissident voices of the time, including Nation columnist and award-winning author Naomi Klein, Robin Kelley, Vijay Prashad and Michael Albert. The session will also include a special extended preview of the acclaimed documentary, The Fourth World War.

This all takes place at Hunter College’s Assembly Hall this Friday, August 20, at 7:00pm. Click here or call 212-817-8215 for tickets, which are being sold on a sliding scale, and click here for directions to Hunter.

Taking place this coming weekend, the LAC Festival aims to provide space for activists to gather and reflect on the importance of long-term vision and strategy through a series of workshops, breakout sessions and informal networking. Panel discussions over the course of the weekend featureAdolph Reed, Michael Hardt, Lisa Fithian, Jason West, Lynne Stewart and Starhawk, among many others. Click here for more info.

The first-ever Imagine Festival of Arts, Issues and Ideas is another of the many creative responses to the RNC convention and the threat posed by a Bush victory in November. A gala of more than 125 events mixing artistic and educational activities through a series of concerts, performances, screenings, forums, town meetings and performance art, the Imagine Festival takes place all over New York City from August 28 to September 2. Click here for more details, event listings and ticket info.

And check out the CounterConvention website for information about the full range of planned protest, cultural and educational activities while the Republican Party meets in New York City. You can also find useful resources at RNCNotWelcome.Org, including info on housing and transportation, downloadable flyers and graphics to help get out the word, and a list of suggested ways you can help the anti-RNC efforts.

We’ll continue to highlight various events, protests and campaigns as the RNC draws nearer, so watch this space for details and let us know about any activities you think we should be featuring by clicking here.