It’s holiday time, y’all! Whether you celebrate Chrimbus, Festivus (Google it for a fun Easter egg), Ludachristmas, Eggmas or any other equally spiritual special occasion, now is that magical time of year where it’s acceptable to get drunk in front of your boss and/or Grandma, go on a shopping spree at 4 a.m. and eat your weight in HoneyBaked Ham. OK, some of us do these things year-round, but now we can’t be judged for it!
For some reason, it’s perfectly normal this time of year to go door-to-door singing unsolicited tunes to strangers. It’s also a good excuse to talk to your best friend’s wife, with whom you’re secretly in love.
Music is a major factor in this wonderfully insane season, so I’ve collected a sampling of this year’s best holiday tunes for all the good little CityBeat readers. Gather ‘round!
Rapper DMX spit some classic rhymes for New York radio channel 105.1 FM:
The Roots produce pure magic week to week on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and all their musical projects. Earlier this year, Fallon and the crew teamed up with musical guest Carly Rae Jepsen backstage to perform her The Song That Shall Not Be Named using children’s/beginner instruments. Their follow-up? Mariah Carey’s infectious holiday anthem, “All I Want For Christmas Is You.”
And who could forget the holiday collaboration we’ve all been waiting for — the reunion of Sandy and Danny — This Christmas from Olivia Newton-John Travolta (easiest celeb couple name ever). Apparently everything that’s ever existed is getting rebooted and, at this point, I think even my one-eyed cat has recorded a Christmas album, so it’s no real shocker that the Grease duo would team up again for a holiday record. But between Travolta’s Chia Pet hair, ON-J’s scary Juvederm face and the following low-budge music video, This Christmas is making my eyeballs beg for the impending apocalypse.
Speaking of hot
messes, while it’s always fun to get drunk on your employer’s dime, it is
important to keep yourself in check at your work’s holiday party. No canoodling
with co-workers, challenging your boss to a drink-off or dancing Gangnam style. Thought Catalog has some hepful dos and don’ts here.
Everything is Terrible (via Videogum) got its hands on a clip from a 1988 Christmas television special starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, his Twins buddy Danny Devito, Mike Tyson, Country singer Randy Travis, old lady and champion bowler Marie Gretter and a bunch of probably terrified children.
While Arnold’s Austrian Antichristmas tradition may sound scary, it’s not nearly as freaky as having Mike Tyson scream a Christmas carol into the face of an innocent child. Also, I’m pretty sure that when Ah-nahld manhandled the little girl who joked that he needed singing lessons, he may have brokes that little girls’ ribs. This looks more like a Tim and Eric sketch than a primetime family program, but I guarantee if you show this to your kids, they will never misbehave again.
It's not Christmas in America until the Kardashian-Jenner family bestows its annual holiday card upon our unworthy eyes. Peep that Photoshopped piece here and find equally funny, scary and confusing family photos in this list of "34 of the most jovially insane family holiday cards ever sent."
If staged dance
performances weren’t what you had in mind, think again. While not necessarily
Halloween-related, Cincinnati Ballet’s ALICE
(in Wonderland) will take audiences on a whimsical journey down the rabbit
hole Friday-Sunday. In addition to talented dancers and music by the Cincinnati
the costume and set designs are truly freaky-fabulous.
For a darker dance
experience, check out Exhale Dance Tribe’s one-night engagement, Dead
Can Dance. The troupe has transformed Emery Theatre into a haunted
house, where dancers will lead spectators from room to room, creating an
interactive, spooky show Saturday night. The performance begins at 7 p.m.
After a month of bringing photography to the forefront of the Cincinnati art scene, FotoFocus will close with Saturday’s Carnevil. The event boasts a full bill of entertainment from live music and DJs to improv and burlesque to fortune-tellers. Guests are encouraged to explore the venue, Newport’s Thompson House — which is said to be haunted — and hunt for spirits from Southgate’s past. Find tickets and event details here.
What’s creepier than three identical mute men, covered in paint? Blue Man Group wraps up its local run with performances at the Aronoff Center Friday-Sunday. The show is an energetic spectacle that theater critic Rick Pender describes as “a strange and wonderful communal experience.” Go here to read our full review.
Judging by the number of Halloween bar and club events, alcohol is the “candy” of choice for many adult trick-or-treaters. So it looks like Arnold’s picked the perfect weekend for The Bourbon Ball. The bar will be stocked with more than 30 top shelf selections, offering specials on Manhattans, Old Fashioneds and other bourbon classics as well as bourbon-infused bites like Bourbon Bacon Strips and Bourbon Sauce Pork. The free event will also have swag bags and live music all night.
Final Saturday means Night Owl Market is back, bringing food trucks and vendors together at the parking lot at Main Street and Central Parkway. In addition to late night eats, NOMers can participate in a costume contest and a flash mob-style “Thriller” dance with Pones Inc. The free fun runs 10 p.m.-3 a.m. Saturday.
One thing that’s definitely scarier than any haunted house or paranormal activity hotspot is breed discrimination. Show some love to dogs that prove no breed is born “vicious” at Bark Bash: Celebrating National Pit Bull Awareness Day. From pit bulls to puggles, all are welcome to romp around Voice of America Park Saturday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. There will be raffles, vendors, kids activities and appearances from the Ben-Gals and Cincinnati Rollergirls.
Few experiences are more picturesque than spending a fall afternoon perusing Findlay Market. This Sunday the market presents its annual Fall Food Festival, featuring a pie baking contest, cider mulling demo, live music, food tour and more. Come hungry between noon and 4 p.m. Find details here.
Check out ScaryBeat for a full rundown of costume parties, bar events, haunted houses and more happening this weekend through Oct. 31.
We’ve all heard it before.
“Remember, remember, the fifth of November/Gunpowder treason and plot/We
see no reason/Why Gunpowder treason/Should ever be forgot…”
It is a well-known 18th century rhyme and a memorable quote perhaps immortalized by the film V for Vendetta. The movie features Hugo Weaving as an enigmatic vigilante sporting a Guy Fawkes mask (both as symbolism and to cover his gruesome burns via government experimentation) who delivers such fervid lines as, “Beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy, and ideas are bulletproof.” While the verses of the Guy Fawkes poem are widely recognized and even plastered over social media today, it is unlikely that everyone is familiar with its origin.
Guy Fawkes Day is a British observance mostly celebrated in the U.K. and other countries that were formerly a part of the British Empire (lookin’ at you, North American colonies). It takes place on Nov. 5 (today) and memorializes the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605. The Gunpowder Plot conspirators, led by Robert Catesby, planned to bomb the Houses of Parliament (House of Lords) during its state opening, aiming to assassinate the King along with members of Parliament. The conspirators were ardent Roman Catholics who believed King James’s intolerance toward Catholics to be unjust, with his severe penal law against those who practiced the religion.
Once he was out of the way, the conspirators planned to instigate an uprising of English Catholics and reestablish Catholic rule in England. Alas, the conspirators were betrayed and the plan did not come into fruition. Guy Fawkes, among the most famous of the bunch, was caught right before lighting the fuse to a massive 36 barrels of gunpowder. He was taken into custody and subsequently tried, convicted and executed. The others suffered the same fate or were killed while resisting capture. And so began the tradition noted in the poem, as parliament dubbed Nov. 5 a national day of thanksgiving for “the joyful day of deliverance.”
Despite its history, this observance is no longer a tribute to parliament, but rather a tribute to the conspirators who had the audacity to challenge authority. People around the world wear Guy Fawkes masks in protest, as seen during the Occupy Wall Street movement and the Arab Spring, to hide their identities. Today, the Million Mask March World Event, brought together by the Anonymous movement, takes place near political institutions around the globe. Activists planned rallies in more than 400 cities, including Washington D.C. and London, with Facebook pages set up in countries from Nigeria to Belize.
(non-official) says that the event is a “call for Anonymous, WikiLeaks, The
Pirate Party, Occupy and Oath Keepers to Unite Marchers, Occupiers, Whistleblowers
and Hacktivists” to mobilize and protest. The website also states, “There is no
official site, and nobody is in charge: it’s a movement, not an organization.”
With that in mind, it is a feat that Anonymous now has as powerful of a web presence as it does, successfully receiving worldwide attention on issues such as anti-censorship protests against government/corporate websites and calling attention to allegations of corruption in local and international cases. A Facebook event page for the Million Mask March, with a cover photo of numerous Guy Fawkes masks, states that the march’s mission is “to remind this world what it has forgotten, that fairness, justice and freedom are more than just words.”
In D.C., the rally is scheduled to move from the Washington Monument to the street by the White House, with more than $2,000 raised for transportation and accommodations for the Anons. Similarly, in London, thousands of individuals intend to rally at Trafalgar Square, a hotspot for past Anonymous Guy Fawkes Day congregations that successfully occurred in large numbers. Unlike V in the film, activists plan to march silently and “resist peacefully” in the event of police action.
While the Guy Fawkes rhyme was established in the 18th century and the movie V for Vendetta debuted in 2005, the spirit of Guy Fawkes is very much alive today — perhaps more than ever — as individuals come together to protest political injustices all around the world.
Before you make dinner plans, you have to check out Anne Mitchell's guide to local Mardi Gras eats, our cover story for the week. From Otto's to Washington Platform to Half Day Cafe, she describes all the local restaurants celebrating with NOLA-inspired bites, traditional baked goods and gut-busting buffets (you are supposed to pig out today, right?).
Countless other area eateries and drinkeries promise a night of crawfish and hurricanes, including Allyn's, Stanley's Pub, Righteous Room, Mecklenburg Gardens, The Stand, J. Gumbo's, Blue Wisp, Keystone Bar & Grill (Covington and Hyde Park), AliveOne, The Lackman and The Pub (Rookwood Mews and Crestview Hills).
And since the whole point of Fat Tuesday is to get all your vices out of the way before the Christian season of Lent, a time for sacrifice and prayer leading up to Easter, why not support a charity? At Mardi Gras for Homeless Children, guests can enjoy food and drink, authentic Zydeco and Jazz music, auctions and more. The event runs from 6:30-10 p.m. at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center. Tickets are $55, available here. Proceeds benefit homeless children shelters.In non-Fat news, tonight's live music lineup ranges from Dubstep (Rusko) to Christian Metalcore (August Burns Red). Check out Mike Breen's music blog for details.
The Heights Music Festival (formerly Clifton Heights Music Festival, launched in 2009) kicks off tonight with more than 70 bands (and some comedy sets) at five venues within walking distance around Clifton Heights. Rohs Street Café, Baba Budan’s, Mac’s, Christy’s and Roxx Electrocafe all host performances beginning at 7 p.m. tonight and starting at 3 p.m. tomorrow afternoon through the night. Tickets are $8 for just tonight, $5 for tomorrow’s daytime shows or $12 for the whole weekend. Go here for lineup details and more information.
iconic Cincinnati-based artist Charley Harper passed away almost five years
ago, his artwork is as recognizable now than ever. His modernist depictions of
nature and wildlife still cover the walls of fans young and old. Mary Ran
Gallery is currently holding an exhibit and sale of Harper’s vintage signed and
numbered prints. Stop by the Hyde Park gallery, peep some of his colorful works
and walk away with one of your own. Find details here.
TEDxCincinnatiChange is the first of many TED events to hit the Tri-state this spring. Saturday’s theme is "Big Picture, Small Details," set to examine issues with global and local impact and zeroing in on small details to make big ideas work. This a satellite event of a national TEDxChange, which marks a partnership between TED (Technology, Entertainments and Design) and the Melinda Gates Foundation. The Cincinnati event will kick off with a live streaming of a TEDxChange talk from Berlin. Speakers and performers include filmmakers Andrea Sisson and Peter Ohs, True Body Project founder Stacy Sims, taste of Beligum's Jean-Francois Flechet and many more. The event is currently sold out, but go here to find other upcoming TED events.
Rumspringa is a rite of passage when Amish adolescents can leave their community and enjoy a relaxed atmosphere prior to deciding to be baptized or to leave the Amish church. In popular culture, those participating in Rumspringa are often portrayed as hardcore partiers, swapping their values and traditional garb for booze and sex (but in actuality, it’s not so drastic – most choose to continue being Amish). Saturday, Mayday presents its annual Rumspringa Beer and Sausage Fest. Rock out like it’s your only chance to do so and enjoy Amish-inspired delights like beerwurst, bangers, homemade mustards and more beer than you can shake a buckled shoe at. Remember to call a designated carriage driver! The fun starts at 4 p.m.
OTR A.D.O.P.T. is an organization that helps match prospective home/business owners renovate deteriorating historic buildings in Over-the-Rhine. Saturday, Neon’s Unplugged hosts a benefit for the organization, inviting you to Partly Like it’s 1869! Learn about the organization and how to get involved while celebrating the eclectic neighborhood. Costumes are encourage, so sport your favorite hoop skirt or suspenders and capture your look in a photo booth. A $5 donation gets you in; enjoy old timey drink specials from 8 p.m.-1 a.m.
To women, nothing says ‘I Love You’ quite like a big, fat cockroach on Valentine’s Day. That's right, for just $10, you can name a special bug living at the Bronx Zoo after your sweetie - because like love, a cockroach is indestructible.
Treat your loved one like royalty this Valentine's Day by taking him or her to the castle — White Castle, that is. For about 20 years, the oldest fast food burger joint in America has pulled out all the stops on this special occasion. In a one-night-only celebration, White Castles get a makeover with pink and red decor, table cloths, candles, even table service and photographs. No, they don't make sliders of Kobe beef or serve your meal on silver platters, but for those who don't take this Hallmark holiday too seriously, it's the perfect way to pig out with your sweetie. You will need a reservation (seriously), so call 513-559-0575 ext. 14 to select a participating location and dinner time between 5-8 p.m.
This weekend is all mothers, so grab your mom, grandma, baby-mama or other motherly-type and take her out for a good time! The next few days are packed with stuff to do, with moms or otherwise.
The 44th annual Appalachian Festival is already in
full gear at Coney Island, with tons of live music, handmade artisan crafts,
storytelling, food and an authentic pioneer village — for those who like to
kick it super old-school. The fest runs until 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Saturday and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $1-$8. Get a full lineup of
activities and performances here.
Cincinnati Rollergirls games are pretty much a guaranteed good time. Fun, fierce, badass chicks battle on the rink; $1 happy hour beers; hilarious roller derby nicknames; meet-and-greet with the girls after the game — need we go on? Roll out to the Cincinnati Gardens Saturday as the CRG face Toronto Roller Derby and The Dire Skates of Richmond, Ind., in a double-header. Saturday is Scout and Kids Night, so bring the chillun for a family-friendly event. Get tickets here and read our interview with Rollergirl Sydney “Big Ugly” Greathouse.
Whether you’re looking to welcome a furry friend to your family or you want to treat your pup to a day on the town, head downtown to the Duke Energy Convention Center for Petopolis Saturday-Sunday. This pet expo features animal adoption opportunities, pet fashion shows (hopefully straight out of Anchorman), trick competitions, demos, informational seminars, activities for the kids and tons of vendors. Plus, moms will get complimentary pet photos for Mother’s Day. Go here for more information.
Oktoberfest is months away, but local German enthusiasts can get their fill of beer, sausage and Gemütlichkeit at the Cincinnati Donauschwaben Society’s Schwabenfest Friday-Saturday. Have your fill of homemade sausages, German brews, pretzels and cream puffs, compete in the stein-holding competition and, if you’re coming from Petopolis, dogs are welcome in the biergarten.
Maybe you prefer more American-style fare. In that case, swing by Sawyer Point from 2-10 p.m. Saturday for the Cincinnati Wing Fest. This free food festival features chicken wings and side dishes ($2+) from Knocback Nat’s, Rooster’s, Montgomery Inn, Buffalo Wings and Rings and several other area restaurants.
Saturdays is a great opportunity to buy some artwork, jewelry, baked goods,
clothing or home goods for mom (or yourself — no judgment). Stop by local businesses
along Hamilton, Chase and Spring Grove avenues from 6-10 p.m. Saturday for
sales, extended hours, drinks and food specials. Check out a full list of
participating shops, restaurants and bars here.
Kick off the
holiday Saturday with the 47th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which starts at Eggleston Avenue and Reedy Street, travels north on
Eggleston, west onto Central Parkway, south down Sycamore Street and east on Fifth
Street. Nick Clooney serves as grand marshal for the parade, which steps off at
Fountain Square and Washington Park will be bustling with Irish pride on Saturday as well. Enjoy plenty of drinks, grub, live music and Celtic entertainment between bar hoppin’ from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. on the Square and 8 p.m. at the park.
Naturally, the Irish Heritage Center of Greater Cincinnati is also offering plenty of holiday festivities. From Irish dancers to an on-site pub, the center offers a more traditional but fun run of events Saturday and Sunday. Find a full schedule here.
the film festival featuring movies made by and about people with disabilities,
continues this weekend. Catch film
screenings Friday and a closing event Saturday at the Contemporary Arts Center. Read our feature on the festival here.
organizations have collaborated on a multifaceted performance inspired by
Shakespeare’s works. Catacoustic Consort (which performs “early music” from the
Renaissance to Baroque periods) and concert:nova (a chamber music ensemble that
performs in unconventional spaces, blending traditional with contemporary
styles) worked together with Cincinnati Shakespeare Company to present a show of music
performed in or drawn from Shakespeare’s plays in A Common Thread. The show takes place at Mercantile Library
Sunday and Monday. Read our full feature on A
Common Thread here.
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.