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by Jac Kern 03.20.2012
Posted In: Drinking, Events, Fun, Music at 12:33 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your Tuesday To Do List

Spring is here! Celebrate the official start of the season (even though it feels like we skipped forward to summer) with live music, cold drinks and a lovely patio at Neon's. Tonight from 6-9 p.m. Singer-songwriter Tracy Walker will join Adam Sanregret on bass for a night of original music. Find tons more happy hours here.

Local Authors Dann Woellert and Don Heinrich Tolzmann will discuss and sign their respective Cincy-centric books tonight at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Rookwood Pavilion. Woellert's Cincinnati Turner Societies details the locally-founded American Turners organization, created by area German-Americans to influence a growing nation in education, progressive thought, politics, human rights, health, literature and the arts. Tolzman's Over-the-Rhine Tour Guide is an interesting companion to the German Heritage Tours he leads. The book gives a history lesson on the geographical and architectural importance of the area over the years. The event runs from 7-8:30 p.m.

Drinking Liberally is an informal progressive social group, a project of Living Liberally, with chapters across the U.S. and world. The Cincinnati chapter meets at 7:30 p.m. every Tuesday: at Cilfton's Fries Cafe the first and third Tuesday each month, and at Dutch's Bar and Bottle Shop in Hyde Park on second and fourth Tuesdays. Share your opinions and ideas in a relaxed, welcoming setting. Get there by 7:45 p.m. to place a food order from Cactus Pear. Go here for more info on Drinking/Living Liberally.

The Playhouse's Tigers Be Still and Ensemble Theatre's Time Stands Still both have productions tonight. Check out our To Do page for more daily recommendations, and our music blog for nightly shows.

by Jac Kern 03.30.2012
Posted In: Arts, Concerts, Culture, Drinking, Events, Fun, Performances, Music at 11:25 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your Weekend To Do List: 3/30-4/1

Final Friday, Rollergirls, CSO and more

Happy Final Friday! If you're hitting up the monthly gallery/bar hop, stop by Yes (Primaries, 6-10 p.m.), Clay Street Press (The Revolution Says, 6-9 p.m.) and The Art Academy of Cincinnati (Sub-Surfaced, 5-8 p.m.) in addition to the several other participating venues. Read more about these featured exhibits here.

Want to enjoy a more cosmic experience this weekend? Stop by the Cincinnati Astronomical Society in Cleves for the Mars Returns program. Mars is visible from Earth this time of year, and with CAS's powerful telescope, you'll get an excellent glimpse of the famed red planet (weather permitting). Learn about the myths and mysteries that surround Mars and the latest info from NASA. This free program takes place from 8-11 p.m. Saturday. Consider making a small donation on your way out to create more astronomical opportunities at the center.

If you missed legendary composer Philip Glass' MusicNOW performance with eighth blackbird Thursday, you can still check him out this weekend thanks to the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. The world premiere of Glass' Second Cello Concerto will be performed by cellist Matt Haimovitz tonight and Saturday at Music Hall. Go here to get last-minute tickets to the show.

The Cincinnati Rollergirls take on the Demolition City Roller Derby from Evansville, IN. in the third annual College Night Saturday. Students, faculty and staff just need to show school IDs at the door for $10 tickets — the first 300 get free CRG bottle openers. If you missed the girls' season opener, be sure to check out this match, the second home double-header of the 2012 season. Doors open at 6 p.m.with the first bout rolling off at 7 p.m. As always, enjoy $1 happy hour beers from 6-7 p.m. and stick around after the game to meet those badass chicks!

Quick Notes: Stage Door breaks down this weekend's theater offerings; find upcoming concerts and club shows here; Prairie Gallery's Airstream and the Contemporary Arts Centers' Dasha Shiskin exhibit are among this week's visual art suggestions; find even more events on our To Do page.

Check out our Best of Cincinnati issue for reader picks and staff tips on where to get your eats, drinks, arts and shopping on.

by Jac Kern 03.15.2012
Posted In: Drinking, Events, Fun, Northside, Music at 11:19 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your (Thirsty) Thursday To Do List

I suppose with one of the biggest drinking holidays right around the corner, it would only make sense that tonight's events all take place at bars!

If you've read our Swizzle Bar Guide, you know we've got a handle on a ton a great area bars and clubs. To celebrate these excellent establishments, we've launched our Swizzle Happy Hour Series: on the third Thursday of every month, we'll host after-work drinks at a different bar. Tonight is our kick-off at Mynt Martini downtown. From 5-7 p.m., we'll get our March Madness on and party St. Practice Day-style with $1 green beers, $2.50 domestics, $3 imports and well drinks, and $5 martinis and flatbread. If drink specials and basketball aren't enough, we'll be giving away tons of prizes: movie passes, tickets to Borgore with Document One and Paul M. at Bogart's, and a $50 gift certificate to Funny Bone on the Levee. Come hang out with us!

Arnie's on the Levee is also hosting some March Madness festivities, benefiting Northern Kentucky's Brighton Center. For every person that comes in between 6-9 p.m. tonight, Arnie's will donate $1 to the center, which works with area individuals and families to create opportunities for self-sufficiency through support services, education and leadership. In addition to basketball, there will be a wing-eating contest featuring Mark Collier of "Fort Thomas Matters," Highlands football players and radio personalities.

If NCAA is a foreign language to you, head over to Northside's Mayday for the competitive awesomeness that is The Slurring Bee. You don't need a bracket to partake in this party! If auto-correct hasn't completely ruined your ability to spell by memory, this is your game. Just pay $5 to compete, and you'll be given a drink, then a word to spell. After each round you complete, you'll be given another drink! You must finish the drink before the next round, and keep churning out those vocab words. The Queen or King Bee receives a prize and enrollment in the tournament of champions. The run runs from 8-11 p.m.

So spelling isn't everyone's talent. That's OK. Claddagh in Newport is hosing a weekly singing competition for those more vocally-inclined. Claddagh's Got Talent kicks off tonight at 9 p.m. with a qualifying competition. Each Thursday, a winner will be picked to compete in the finals in 10 weeks. The winner of it all will walk away with $5,000!

For arts, theater and comedy shows, check out our To Do recommendations. As always, follow our music blog for the latest on lives shows and local bands.

by Hannah McCartney 03.01.2012
Posted In: Fun, Life at 01:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Kick off Spring in Cincinnati

Before it snows, take a preemptive strike against fickle Cincinnati weather

For better or for worse, Cincinnati is infamous for its fickle weather patterns. This week's weather has been quite the anomaly — after a 70-degree day, weather forecasters are predicting snow this weekend. It's anybody's guess what next week will hold — don't listen to the groundhog — but take some time today to get in the spirit of spring. Today is expected to stay sunny and breezy, so hop to it. Here's how to get started:

•     Take a bike ride somewhere sunny and green. Try the Loveland Bike Trail, the Little Miami Scenic Trail or Lunken Airport’s trail.

•    Go to Findlay Market and get excited about all of the other farmers’ markets you can start frequenting once spring decides to stay.
•    Pick an outdoor shopping destination. Think Main and Vine streets downtown, Hyde Park Square, Mariemont Square or Rookwood Pavilion.

•    Waterproof your camping gear so you’ll be ready for an impromptu weekend excursion to Red River Gorge, Big Bone Lick State Park, East Fork State Park, John Bryan State Park or any other nearby landmarks.

•    Check out the Banks in the works on downtown Cincinnati’s riverfront. The Smale Riverfront Park has big changes in store, including a meditative labyrinth, outdoor concert venue and a tree grove; plus, the Moerlein Lager House is already open for business. Watch its growth firsthand.

•    Treat your animals. When our heating bills survive the mild winter, something else does, too: ticks and fleas. Those pesky parasites are often killed off in severe cold or frosts, but this Cincinnati winter likely spared most of them. That means dogs and cats will likely suffer from worse problems with ticks and fleas this summer and spring. Treating them early on and consistently is your best bet to spare your pet.

•    Go drinking or dining somewhere with a patio. Arthur’s in Hyde Park has an extra-intimate outdoor patio that’s great for slightly chilly spring days. Neon’s in Over-the-Rhine has a hip outdoor courtyard complete with bocce ball, a fired-up grill and a full bar.

There are lots of other ways to get acquainted with spring in Cincinnati. What are your other annual must-do Cincinnati activities when the weather warms up?

by Jac Kern 05.09.2012
Posted In: Comedy, Concerts, technology, Performances, Events, Fun, Food at 09:37 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your Wednesday To Do List

Stop by Fountain Square today to celebrate Museum Day, an event that brings the area’s best art and history museums and attractions to one spot. Get information about your favorite museums and historical sites and discover attractions you didn’t know Cincinnati had to offer. Participants include the Behringer-Crawford Museum, The Betts House, Cincinnati Observatory Center, Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame & Museum, Fire Museum of Greater Cincinnati, Heritage Village Museum, Lloyd Library & Museum, Harriet Beecher Stowe House, Taft Museum of Art, White Water Shaker Village and many more. The free event runs though 2 p.m. on the Square.

Who is the most hilarious Tri-State resident? Each year, Go Bananas tries to answer that question with the club’s Funniest Person in Cincinnati Contest. Tonight the competition kicks off with semi-pros Dwight Simmons, Ranaan Hershberg, Jebb Lyons and Lindsay Boling and several amateurs. Five bucks gets you in the door to check out some of Cincy’s up-and-coming comics. The competition will continue weekly through August, when the favorite comedian will be crowned

Jenny “The Bloggess” Lawson makes a stop at Joseph-Beth Booksellers at Rookwood Pavilion tonight — kind of. The Internet superstar will discuss her “mostly true memoir,” Let’s Pretend This Never Happened via Skype at the book store. The Bloggess’ literary debut features mortifyingly hilarious anecdotes that helped shape an awkward girl into a wildly popular writer. The book talk begins at 7 p.m. Admission is free.

Check out our To Do page for art exhibits, theater shows and other events happening tonight and follow our music blog for nightly club shows and concerts.

by Jac Kern 10.26.2011
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Reviews, Rapture, Movies, Holidays, Fun at 02:08 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Show-down: Scary TV Edition

Television can be scary year-round (ex. Keeping Up with the Kardashians, The Rachel Zoe Project, Breaking Bad), but terror gets turned up a notch this time of year. With Halloween around the corner, here are some horror-ific shows to check out.

Read More

by Jac Kern 02.17.2012
Posted In: Events, Fun, Music, Concerts at 11:30 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your Weekend To Do List: 2/17-2/19

If you usually spend February holed up in your apartment with a bottle of whiskey, Adriatco's and the latest season of Always Sunny, you might not know what to do with yourself this time of year now that it's actually decent outside. Don't worry, we've got your back. Put on some pants, open those curtains and leave your damn couch — there's stuff to do!

Like a UC version of the Fringe Festival, this weekend's Transmigration Festival features five 30-minute drama productions presented by CCM students. These works (written, cast and produced by students on a $60 budget) are presented in atypical spaces within CCM's Corbett Center for the Performing Arts. The event is free, but reservations are required. Find details here.

David Miretsky and Svetlana Derenshuk's exhibit Uniquely Ukraine opens tonight at Phyllis Weston Gallery. The duo present paintings that interpret the human condition on a miniature scale (Miretsky) and colorfully blend Othodox icon painting with modernist sensibilities (Derenshuk). Go here for hours and directions.

Author Andre Dubus III discusses his memoir Townie Saturday at Joseph-Beth Booksellers. Townie follows Dubus' life: growing up poor in Massachusetts following the divorce of his parents, his descent into drugs and street fighting, and ultimately becoming a novelist. Go here for details.

For those looking to give back while enjoying a night out, spend Saturday night at the Voices of the Heart fundraiser. Proceeds from this dinner and auction benefit women on the streets and involved in prostitution. The event will be held at the Cincinnati Hilton Netherland Plaza. Buy tickets here.

This weekend is full of boozy, boobs-out Mardi Gras celebrations, but if you're looking for a more authentic NOLA experience the whole family can attend, stop by Mardi Gras at the Market Sunday. Findlay Market hosts its annual event boasting a parade, Cajun style food and entertainment and, yes, plenty of alcohol. Multimedia artist Nick Cave, whose works are now on display at Cincinnati Art Museum, will even be on hand to present a soundsuit invasion. Laissez les bons temps rouler! Go here for a full schedule of the day's events, and read this week's cover story on how local eateries celebrate the holiday (Warning: May cause excessive mouth-watering) here.

Many area theaters have some great productions running right now, and this weekend is a chance to check one out. See Rick Pender's Stage Door for his advice on what to see. The coming nights are also full of live shows from Heartless Bastards, Purling Hiss and Dr. Dog, Natalie Wells, Mike Doughty and more. Follow our music blog for all your concert needs.

Finally, Best of Cincinnati voting ends Sunday at midnight, so if you haven't had a chance to show some of to your favorite local businesses, restaurants and people, go here to vote now!

by Jac Kern 04.26.2012
to do_makr at cac

Your Thursday To Do List

Happy National Pretzel Day! In honor of this momentous occasion, Servatii offers free pretzel sticks to every guest today. We suggest going all-out with one of their tasty, giant pretzel sandwiches, too. Find a location to stop by here.

Another TED event takes place locally today, this time on Xavier's campus. TEDxXavierUniversity brings leaders in innovation from across the city and country to speak on the theme "Touching the hearts and minds of others through innovation, service, and leadership." Speakers include emcee Michelle Beckham-Corbin (President and Chief Digital Marketing Strategist of C3: Creating Connections Consulting, LLC), Todd Henry (founder and CEO of Accidental Creative), Rashmi Assudani PhD. (Associate Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship at XU's Williams College of Business) and other CEOs, directors of non-profits and cutting edge entrepreneurs. The free event runs 1-5 p.m. today at the Cintas Center Schiff Banquet Hall. Guests should have already reserved their spot in advance.

The Contemporary Arts Center continues to bring unique musical performances to the museum. Tonight, local quartet Makr performs Georg Friedrich Haas' "In iij. Noct." at 8 p.m. The music collective features current and former students of The University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music Eddy Kwon, Brodie Johnson, Joshua Ulrich and Suzanna Barnes. Doors open at 7:30 tonight and tickets are $14.

Comedian John Heffron makes a tour stop at Funny Bone on the Levee starting tonight. Heffron was the winner of Last Comic Standing's second season and has performed on tons of late night shows and Comedy Central specials and at comedy festivals. A relatively "clean" comic, Heffron avoids politics and controversy in his acts, focusing on the naturally funny aspects of everyday life. Tonight's performance begins at 8 p.m. Find details here.

Check out our music blog for tonight's live show lineup and our To Do page for more events, art shows and performances.

by Jac Kern 08.16.2013
Posted In: Events, Fun, Music, Arts at 01:06 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Your Weekend To Do List: 8/16-8/18

Most cops discourage partying and street art — not The London Police. The British art duo has been leaving their precision-meets-cartoony signature pieces across Covington throughout the past week and tonight, from 7-11 p.m. at BLDG, The London Police will reveal the sites of their work, which includes several small-scale pieces and one mural. Meet the duo, purchase their work and see them perform live as TLP Dog Singers.

The 25th Annual Midwest Black Family Reunion takes places this weekend, bringing more than 50,000 people to Sawyer Point — making it one of the city’s largest family-focused annual festivities. Events include a parade Saturday, Sunday morning service, food and retail vendors, live music, town hall meetings and much more. Go here for a full event schedule.

As students across the Tri-state prepare to head back to school, you can do your part to ensure safe, accessible sex education is available through Planned Parenthood. The organization’s fundraiser, Summer’s Over – What a Drag…Show features two drag shows with lots of performances Saturday night at The Cabaret, above Below Zero in Over-the-Rhine. The shows — featuring drag queens and kings, including RuPaul’s Drag Race’s Mystique “Bitch, I am from Chicago” Summers — begin at 7 and 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for students, $20 GA or $30 for both shows if purchased online ($5 at the door). All proceeds go toward sex education through Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region.

Washington Park will be abuzz this weekend, as per usual. The City Flea sets up Saturday, fulfilling all your quirky shopping needs (plus eats and drinks from local foods trucks and vendors) from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Later that night at 9 p.m., it’s Date Night Movie time with Julie and Julia (which sounds more like a Date Night with Mom Movie, but we’re not judging). And Sunday is full of free performances, starting with ArtsWave’s Sundays in the Park. Cincinnati Ballet Second Company will present a free performance and dance-along at 2 and 3 p.m. To really make the most out of your day (without opening your wallet), stick around for Shakespeare in the Park at 7 p.m., where Cincinnati Shakespeare Company will present a free performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

For more art openings, summer festivals, theater shows and other stuff to do this weekend, check out our To Do picks and full calendar.

by Jac Kern 03.23.2012

I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's favorite recent pop culture and Internet findings

Planking can be dangerous. Tebowing is just plain dumb. If there’s one viral Internet pose I can sign off on, it’s Draping.

Fashioned after Don Draper's iconic pose in the Mad Men intro, Draping has infiltrated the interwebs! This is all in anticipation for Sunday's long-awaited two-hour season premiere. Read more about that here.

Like many fun Internet bits I stumble upon, Drinkify is a really simple site that has that cool, “Why didn’t I think of that?” factor. Just enter the artist you’re listening to (or plan to that night), and Drinkify matches a perfect beverage to match. Vampire Weekend = PBR, Sleigh Bells = 10 oz. Whiskey (”Serve neat.”) and, because I was curious, Justin Bieber = 8 oz. Red Bull.

Anyone who knows my television habits is fully aware of my love for Bravo shows. I know, it's an abomination, but sometimes you just want a Taco Bell bean burrito instead of a fresh-cooked meal, and sometimes I want to watch Real Housewives instead of quality television. It keeps me grounded.

The latest gem Bravo has bestowed upon us: Shahs of Sunset, a reality show (duh) about a wealthy group of Persians in Beverly Hills. Don't hate me. The following is one of many internet rants from Shahs' hottest piece, Reza (NSFW). I'll never look at Parmesan cheese the same way again.

The award for web video series that will make you snort aloud, revealing that you're screwing around at work goes to...Bad Lip Readings! I'm late on this, I know, but damn if these stupid videos aren't hilarious. Unfortunately Rick Santorum's real words are just as ridiculous as the ones dubbed in this video.


One could not recap recent internet/popular news without mentioning KNOYGATE. Though anyone reading this has access to the Internet and therefore has probably been bombarded with the progressing stories on Kony, allow me to briefly explain.

Joseph Kony is the head of a Ugandan guerilla group that terrorizes the country, murdering villages, kidnapping children from their homes and turning them into soliders. He’s an international villain, and filmmaker/activist Jason Russell has made it his mission to stop him. Russell created the film-turned-movement Invisible Children after spending time in Uganda. The movie’s been around since 2006, but Russell recently started an internet campaign, KONY 2012, to spread awareness about the injustice in Uganda.

The video flooded Facebook walls, news sites and Twitter Feeds like wildfire. It was particularly popular with younger people, because the video targeted American youth, explaining that if enough people know who Kony is, we can get our government to do something about him. That translates to "Young people can make a difference," which is totally a good thing. Kids have been infiltrating malls, sharing KONY 2012 stickers and bracelets to spread awareness. But some people started to get concerned.

See, it’s obviously great that young people are concerned about international injustice. But fad activism isn’t just annoying; following an organization you don't previously research is dumb – and re-posting a YouTube video doesn’t make you an activist.

Soon after the video went viral came speculation about Russell and Invisible Children. Because, you know, some people like to look into an organization before blindly accepting its cause. Turns out just a little over one-third of the non-profit’s funds went to direct services in Uganda, in addition to countless examples of fishiness. Most funding was spent on travel expenses and film production. So the people who were critical about the whole KONY viral vid weren’t just being dicks after all.

Then, something crazy happened. Literally.

Jason Russell lost his shit. Last week, Russell ran around naked, shouting obscenities on a sidewalk in San Diego. He was arrested, but not charged, and sent to a hospital on a 5150 psychiatric hold. Most recently, he has been diagnosed with "reactive psychosis" brought on by stress, dehydration and exhaustion.

All this, in a matter of weeks! Really, I don’t mean to make light of an international war criminal and an activist’s state of health, but this story has brought up more drama than any soap opera could dream. And that’s why I love the Internet.