The final weekend of the summer is at our doorsteps (even though the season officially stretches to the third week of September), meaning that hundreds of tourists will flock to the beach or mountains in hopes of wringing one last fling out of the vacation season before hauling out the backpacks, schoolbooks and bus schedules.

Fall will be here before you know it!

Why not avoid the stress, expense and time-chew of a rigorous commute? Those in The Pursuit of events and happenings in the Montgomery County, Pa., area have plenty to choose from right here.

In fact, if you use your imagination, you can "band" together with like-minded locals who are making weekend plans that don't include sand in the shorts or the distinctive scent of bug repellent.

Exercise bands are an effective way of toning muscles, which is one of the many goals of the Ambler YMCA. This weekend, August 30 to September 1, the Ambler Y is giving you the chance to shape up and ship out clutter. The Y's Impact Thrift Store is accepting donations of gently used clothing, shoes, books and small electronics. The collection drive will serve as a way for Impact Thrift to obtain quality donations to further its own service to the community. All of the donated items will either be sold at Impact Thrift Stores or responsibly recycled, and the net proceeds will financially support 16 charities in Montgomery and Bucks County, such as Ambler's own Inter-Faith Housing Alliance. To date, Impact Thrifts' financial support has surpassed $1.8 million.

The 1988 children's film The Land Before Time is about a five orphaned dinosaurs who band together to find a peaceful place where they can live safely. This early work from animation director Don Bluth (An American Tail, Anastasia) is being shown at Limerick Community Park on Friday, August 30, at 8:30 p.m., part of the township's Movies Under the Stars summer program. Owing to its popularity, The Land Before Time was followed up with 12 sequels, eight games, two sing-a-long videos, and a TV series. The Limerick Community Park's concession stand will be open, with refreshments available. The showing is sponsored by the NorthPointe Community Church.

A.C. Moore Arts and Craft Stores are holding the world's largest stretch band bracelet-making event Saturday, August 31. As part of its shot at a record for the largest simultaneous assembly of stretch bands - those glittery, neon and woven bracelets popular with kids - "Band-A-Palooza" is your chance to not only pick up the necessary materials but also learn the technique for weaving them. Available for purchase are the bands themselves, in a rainbow of options and unique materials such as glow-in-the-dark and scented, and a loom to make it easier to twist the colorful elastic ovals together.

The football games of Pennsylvania State University aren't complete without an appearance by the Penn State Blue Band, which started as a six-member drum and bugle corps in 1899. If you haven't gotten a ticket to the Penn State/Syracuse game on Saturday, August 31, in East Rutherford, NJ, you can still cheer the Nittany Lions in a Montgomery County TV tailgate. The Penn State MontCo Alumni Chapter will gather at PJ Whelihan's in Blue Bell, Pa., to watch the game (and the band at halftime, presumably), with giveaways and prizes joining the food a drink specials. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m.

The band Black Eyed Peas have sold an estimated 56 million records worldwide. We're not sure if you can buy a black-eyed pea at the Indian Valley Farmers' Market, Telford, Pa., on Saturday, August 31, but their tables are sure to be laden with other produce. The market also features a slate of special programming for children, designed to keep the young ones engaged and safe while parents shop. This Saturday, the youngsters will be making a craft especially themed for back to school. And although that may result in some grumbles, at least it's something to do outside, before the classroom begins to close in and the weather turns sour.

Indian Valley Farmers' Market

If you're looking for additional fun, the bandwidth of the Valley Forge Convention and Visitors Bureau is loaded with information on nearby attractions and memorable sights. Drum up a few good ideas and march out and make them happen!