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by Jac Kern 03.16.2012
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 3/16-3/18

Althea Harper, Cincy Ballet's Rite of Spring, Millenicon, way too much green beer

DAAP grad and former Project Runway contestant Althea Harper is in town tonight, presenting a trunk show at OTR's Sloane Boutique. Check out the designer's Spring 2012 looks featuring her signature combination of fine tailoring and delicate draping. Sloane offers 15 percent off its spring merchandise and a chance to win a $50 gift certificate. Get details here.

This weekend Cincinnati Ballet presents a production quite fitting, considering our weather – Rite of Spring. With Stravinsky's music performed live by the Cincinnati Orchestra, Rite of Spring is a “raw, grungy” piece that pits “individual against the group; it’s kind of timeless and universal,” as described by Resident Choreographer Adam Hougland. There is an 8 p.m. performance tonight and 2 and 8 p.m. performances Saturday. Go here for ticket information and performance details.

Millenicon is a literature-based sci-fi convention celebrating its 26th year in Cincinnati. This isn't your standard Trekkie symposium (though there's many programs for them!) – there's a variety of programming during the convention's run, including science fiction literature and fantasy subjects, science, space, technology, writing, art, costuming, collecting, gaming, children's programming, film and media interests. All are welcome to get their geek on at the longest-running sci-fi convention in the area. It all takes place tonight through Sunday, with programs occurring throughout the day, at the Holiday Inn Cincinnati - I-275 North in Sharonville.

Concert:nova's Food + Music Festival comes to a close Sunday with Quartetto Italiano. The festival, which featured food and music from France and Germany, wraps up with an Italian brunch at Via Vite prepared by Chef Christian Peitoso and string quartet music written by Italian composers Puccini, Verdi and Nino Rota. The event takes place at noon and is $55 ($35 for pass holders). Get tickets here.

Of course, there are endless St. Patrick's Day events also happening this weekend. Find some of them (and a fun history of the holiday) here. You know the drill – nearly every bar and restaurant across town will celebrate in some capacity, even if it's just green Budweiser and that damn Dropkick Murphys song on repeat.

46th annual St. Patrick's Day Parade steps off at noon downtown. The parade famously continues through rain, snow, or, perhaps this year, unseasonably warm weather. Hopefully the impending storms will hold off anyway. The route begins at Second and up Main Street, across Fifth and down Elm Street. Find details here.

One suggestion is the Schmidlapp Event Lawn preview party running tonight through Sunday. The event lawn, located next to the Moerlein Lager House and Smale Park at The Banks, opens for the first time to the public for the holiday. Enjoy live dancers, pipers and bands, plenty of beer stands and a killer view of the riverfront. If you get hungry or crave some harder stuff (Jameson, anyone?) just hop inside the Lager House.

If historically inaccurate holidays that celebrate stereotypes aren't your thing, check out The Art of Food, Merrily We Roll Along, A Day in Pompeii, tons of live music or any of our other To Do recommendations. Or just stay home and watch Always Sunny. No judgement.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.15.2012
Posted In: Drinking, Events, Fun, Northside, Music at 11:19 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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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 Jac Kern 03.14.2012
Posted In: bikes, Fun, Events, Drinking at 02:20 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Power to the Pedals!

Local Pedal Wagon introduces a fun, green take on transportation

Have you spotted a giant, pedal-powered contraption rolling around town? No, we're not talking about tall bikes (though we do love us some crazy cyclists) — Pedal Wagon is a new venture from two Cincinnati-natives that offers a first-of-its-kind experience in the area.

Jack Heekin and Tom O'Brian created the Pedal Wagon to give locals a unique way to experience all the bars, historical sites and landmarks Cincy has to offer. It works like this: about a dozen passengers sit around a rectangular covered wagon with pedals underneath the seats. Those passengers provide the power while a driver steers the wagon along. If you're too short to reach the pedals (which is the case if you're under 5-foot-3) or physical activity cramps your style, just relax on the bench and watch your friends do all the work!

Pedal Wagon made its debut inside February's Cincy Winter Beerfest, then hit the streets of OTR for the recent Bockfest. Don’t worry about intoxicated drivers, though — passengers merely provide power for the wagon, while a sober professional directs it and controls the car-caliber breaks.

Pedal Wagon offers various city cruises where guests will be taken to area bars, Fountain Square, and other Downtown hot spots. They also feature Pedal Parties, where individuals can rent the wagon for 2 hours at just $30 a person. Alcohol is not allowed on the wagon itself, unless on private property with permission to do so (like inside Cincy Beerfest).

The crew plans to join forces with American Legacy Tours (Queen City Underground, Newport Gangster Tour) for The Beer Barons and Bike Tour this May. For more information, or to book a cruise, call 513-201-ROLL or check out www.pedalwagon.com. Be sure to look out for the Pedal Wagon at Saturday's St. Patrick's Day parade downtown!

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.13.2012
Posted In: Culture, Dating, Drinking, Events, Music at 12:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Tuesday To Do List

The instructors at The Art Institute of Ohio — Cincinnati talk the talk and walk the walk. In addition to teaching up-and-coming artists, they, too, create works of art on a regular basis. Tonight, check out their work during the college's 2012 Faculty Exhibition closing reception. The event runs from 6-8 p.m. in the Mason school's gallery. If you're interested in attending the Art Institute, stop by to check out the work and come back on March 31 when the school holds an open house.

Bree from Hot Wheels Entertainment hosts karaoke at The Drinkery every Tuesday. Whether you're a karaoke god or just a spectator, swing by the OTR bar between 9 p.m.-2 a.m. for tunes and booze. Find details here.

Cincinnati Playwrights Initiative (CPI) continues its New Voices Season of Staged Readings with Edge Walking. Written by Barbara Harkness and directed by Patrick Downey, Edge Walking follows two parents who are faced with a child claiming he is the reincarnation of their oldest son who died as a POW in Vietnam. The encounter brings up feelings of anger, loss and grief as each character must deal with the death. Tickets to the 7:30 p.m. performance are just $8 and can be purchased before the show at the Aronoff Center. For more information, call CPI's Kalman Kivkovich at 513-861-0004.

The library's Northside branch hosts a series of poetry and short story readings showcasing local authors from 6-8 p.m. tonight. Lyrical Synaesthesia is a quarterly reading event designed to showcase the breadth of talent in Cincinnati and help foster a strong living literary tradition in the Queen City. Tonight's free event is hosted by Justin Patrick Moore and will feature readings from Matt Hart, Nick Barrows, Abiyah and Betsy Young. Hosted by Justin Patrick Moore. The first 20 to arrive will receive a free chapbook published by Aurore Press. 


Want to enjoy after-work drinks while learning about an important local cause? GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) Greater Cincinnati presents a happy hour at Know Theatre from 5:30-7:30 p.m. tonight. Learn about GLSEN's mission to make schools safe for all students regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Enjoy a cash bar and complimentary hors d’oeuvres while the organization will gives a brief presentation at 6:45 p.m. Learn more about GLSEN and how to become on ally here.

Find ongoing art exhibits and other daily events here and follow our music blog for nightly live music offerings.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.12.2012
Posted In: Events, Drinking, Music at 10:20 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Monday To Do List

Wash down your Bock with the sounds of Bach tonight at the German Brass and Beer, hosted by Arnold's Bar and Grill. The concert:nova brass qunitet has a set of traditional waltzes, dance numbers and marches in store for the 6 p.m. concert. At 7 p.m., enjoy a dinner of authentic German fare. Tickets are $55, $35 for pass holders, and can be purchased here.

The Civic Garden Center holds another gardening class tonight: "Vegetative Propagation; Plant Cloning Made Easy." With patience and care, any gardener can reproduce almost any plant. Join instructor Paul Koloszar to learn how to make more of the plants you love. The program runs from 6-8 p.m. and is $10 (free for CGC volunteers). Go here for more information.

JGourmet is a regular cooking class presented by Jewish Young Professionals (JYP) Access. Tonight's event is centered around the best meal of the day — breakfast. Bakers from Pigasus Bagel and Bread, along with JYP members, will teach guests how to make perfect homemade bagels and delicious omelets at A Forkable Feast. After the class, enjoy the delicious meal you've created. Who can resist breakfast for dinner? The 7 p.m. event is open to Jewish young professionals and their significant others (of all faiths). Admission is just $10. RSVP here.

Mayday presents its bi-weekly Bombs Away! comedy open mic tonight from 8-11 p.m. Register for a five-minute spot or just come to enjoy the hilarity of others.

Milton's on Propsect Hill also continues its weekly Vinyl Night. Bring your favorite records to share or have a DJ play them for you. Find musical suggestions and event details here.

The Covedale Center for Performing Arts holds auditions for two Showboat Majestic shows tonight. Men, women and children are welcome to audition for Rounding Third (Aug. 8-26) and The Music Man (Sept. 12-30). No appointments are necessary. Find requirements and performance details here.

For today's list of gallery shows, check out our To Do page. Follow our music blog for live shows.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.09.2012
Posted In: Concerts, Culture, Drinking, Events, Northside, Music at 03:59 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 3/9-3/11

The Cincinnati International Wine Festival opens tonight at Duke Energy Convention Center. More than 600 varieties from 100 wineries will be at your disposal during the grand tastings tonight, tomorrow afternoon and tomorrow evening. There will also be live music, a silent auction and plenty of food to soak up that alcohol. This is a pricey event, but it's a chance to taste wines from across the globe. Go here for tickets.

Is beer more your style? The folks who brought us Cincy Winter Beerfest just a couple weeks ago present All About Stout Fest Saturday at Molly Malone's Irish Pub in Covington. For $15, guests get five tastings, one full pint of choice and a souvenir pint glass. There are 25 stouts to choose from, plus Molly's 18 draft beers on tap. With live Irish music to keep you movin', consider this your dress rehearsal for St. Patrick's Day. Find a full beer list and ticket information here.

Though we live in a city with limited access to independent, art house and foreign films (the Esquire can only do so much!) Cincy World Cinema brings us some much-needed film opportunities, like this weekend's Oscar Shorts. Saturday and Sunday, CWC hosts an exclusive screening of Academy Award nominated live-action and animated short films. Enjoy cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and the rare opportunity to see these films on the big screen, in one day. Many screenings have sold out, so go here to purchase yours.

Final Fridays are to OTR as Second Saturdays are to Northside. As usual, all are encouraged to explore the neighborhood's bars, restaurants, galleries and businesses for extended hours, later happy hours, art openings and sales starting at 6 p.m. Find a full list of participating venues here.

Springtime brings the start of everyone's favorite spectator sport. No, not baseball, roller derby! The Cincinnati Rollergirls open their seventh season with a double-header against the Arch Rival Roller Girls of St. Louis Saturday. Head down to the Cincinnati Gardens early for free parking and tailgating, then enjoy $1 happy hour beers beginning at 6 p.m., when the doors open. The Cincinnati Junior Rollergirls, featuring mini badasses age 8-17 (isn't that kind of a crazy age range?) make their debut during halftime. General admission is $10 in advance, $12 at the door ($15/$17 for trackside seats). If you haven't been to a roller derby since the '90s, it's exciting, cheap and the sport is really fun to get into. You'll be getting rowdy in no time! Go here for tickets.

Tickets to Radiohead's June concert at Riverbend go on sale at 10 a.m. tomorrow. If you're planning on snagging a pair, you should probably camp out tonight.

Of course, there's also tons of live music, theater, art shows and more events going on this weekend. Find all our To Do recommendations here.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.08.2012
Posted In: Culture, Music, Drinking, Events at 10:57 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Thursday To Do List

Spring is a time of change and new beginnings in nature, so why not apply that to our lives? A-Line's Spring into Action event tonight celebrates Cincinnati's nonprofit and volunteer organizations and it's a perfect opportunity to find out how to get involved. Meet with representatives from Planned Parenthood/STOP AIDS, Visionaries & Voices, SCPA, Women Helping Women and many others in the fun setting of Japps Since 1879. After you've been inspired by these organizations, enjoy music, free food and tasty cocktails – this is Japps, after all. Representatives from OYO Distillery, Central Ohio's award winning 100 percent "grain-to-bottle" micro-distillery, will be on hand to give a presentation and answer any questions. We'll also be giving away tickets to St. Vincent and River City Extension featuring Young Heirlooms, both at Bogart's! Have fun, help others and learn about amazing people doing amazing things across Cincinnati and Ohio. The free event runs from 5:30-9 p.m. RSVP on Facebook.

All this talk of cocktails and distilleries got you thirsty? The Cincinnati International Wine Festival kicks off tonight with winery dinners at various Cincinnati area restaurants. Winemakers from around the world are in town tonight, paired with chefs at the area's best restaurants to create amazing wine and meal pairings. Many of tonight's events are sold out but tickets are still available for dinners at Bouquet (pairs with Aurelio Cabestrero from Grapes of Spain), Embers (with Trichero Family Estates), Jag's (with Tom Clare from Longboard Vineyards) and a few more. Check out their site for more details. The actual festival at Duke Energy Convention Center begins tomorrow, with grand tastings Friday eventing, Saturday afternoon and Saturday evening. Find ticket information and a full schedule of events here.

You've probably heard about Cincinnati music's awesome invasion of South By Southwest. Can't make the trip to Austin? Swing by The Redmoor tonight for its Midwest by Southwest: From Cincinnati to SXSW Tour Launch. Wussy, The Sundresses, Oh My Me and They Whiskey Daredevils will perform just before heading south to the fest. Doors open and 6 p.m. and the shows kicks off around 8 p.m. Be sure to bring the sexy — a regional TV pilot is being shot at the show tonight. The program, hosted by Tracy Walker, will focus on Cincinnati's music talent. Tickets to the tour launch are $10 at the door.

Covington's Carnegie Center hosts Juliard-trained pianist and Harvard-trained psychiatrist Dr. Richard Kogan this evening. Kogan has studied Beethoven extensively and focuses on the relationship between the composer's mind, motivations and music in his performances. Stimulating the left and right sides of the brain, Kogan's performances are "eloquent, compelling and exquisite," says the New York Times. The 7:30 p.m. performance is $25, $19 for Carnegie members. Find details here.

Check out our music blog and To Do page for more theater, art and live music events happening around town tonight.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.07.2012
Posted In: Culture, Dating, Drinking, Events, Fashion, Fun, Music at 10:47 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Wednesday To Do List

If you're in the mood to swap your yamaka for a cowboy hat, Jewish Young Professionals Access hosts its regular HeBREW Happy Hour series at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill tonight. Jewish Young Professionals 21-35 and their significant others are invited to visit the 88-foot, guitar-shaped bar, hop on the mechanical bull, drink a beer out of a mason jar and mingle with others from 6-8 p.m. Guests to the free event should register online in advance, but call Access at 513-373-0300 to get on the guest list last-minute.

The Civic Garden Center hosts many gardening and eco-friendly classes throughout the year. Tonight is the first installment of a three-part Master Composter Series. Participants who take all three classes in addition to completing 15 hours of community service will be certified as Master Composters. The entire series is free. Tonight's 6-8:30 p.m. class is Composting 101, instructed by Master Composter, Master Gardener and Founder of the American Compost Society, John Duke. Learn about how composting works, different systems to use, how to start and analyze your pile and more. Go online or call 513-221-0982 ext. 18 to reserve your spot.

Cincinnati E.A.T.S. (Epicureans About Town Society) is an organization for lovers of food (hence the term "epicurean"). They strive to taste all Cincy has to offer by supporting local restaurants with special events. Tonight, the crew meets at Taste of Belgium Bistro from 7-10 p.m. Tickets for Cincinnati E.A.T.S. outings go fast, so go online to get added to the wait list and learn about upcoming events. Guests pay a discounted flat rate (that includes tax and tip), and eat together in a family-style setting. Beer and wine pairings are suggested but sold separately the night of. Tonight's event benefits the Freestore Foodbank, so bring plenty of canned goods. Do you really need any more excuses to visit Taste of Belgium? WAFFLES.


Over in Clifton Heights, Baba Budan's hosts a night of open-minded, pride-filled fun. From 7-9 p.m., UC Alliance presents Open-Minded Mic, where all are welcome to play a song, perform in drag, recite poetry, do some stand-up – express yourself openly to a welcoming crowd! Afterward, Alternative to the Alternative Night takes over. Tonight's theme is Under Construction, fitting as Baba's is still remodeling after a car crashed through the entrance early Feb. 20. Come in your best construction gear, dressing in red if you're taken, yellow if you're dating or green if you're totally single and ready to go. There will be drink specials all night long. Find details here.

For ongoing theater and art shows, check out our To Do page. Check out our music blog for tonight's live music rundown.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.05.2012
Posted In: Drinking, Events, Music, Fun at 12:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Monday To Do List

Guinness, vinyl, free CAC admission and more

St. Patrick's Day is right around the corner and in preparation for this celebration of all things Irish/alcohol-related, Molly Malone's hosts a Guinness Perfect Pour Contest tonight. The competition at the Covington pub kicks off at 7 p.m. Bartenders have already signed up online, so go to cheer on the best pour-fessional. These bartenders will be judges on their "perfect" technical pint pour and a more creative pour (which can include personal flair, decorations in the beer's head, etc.) Prizes for winners include Guinness products, an iPad and iPods, and there will be more giveaways throughout the night. All proceeds from Guinness sold tonight with go to the Emerald Society Pipes & Drums. Downstairs, you'll find a different vibe with Bluegrass night. Enjoy the Monday night jam session with $2 Bulleit Bourbon. Check out Molly Malone's site for details.

Monday is Vinyl Night at Milton's Prospect Hill Tavern. Show support for local record stores and vinyl culture by bringing your collection to play. Variety is key, so go here to check the specs and see which genres could use a little more airtime. All are welcome to play records, or have one of the DJs spin it for you. The event runs from 10 p.m.-2:30 a.m.


Did you miss the jam-packed Contemporary Arts Center opening party Saturday, or perhaps you became entranced by Dan Deacon and forgot to check out the exhibits? Spectacle: The Music Video and Dasha Shishkin's I surrender, dear are both on display at the museum. Swing by after 5 p.m. for free admission. The CAC is open until 9 p.m. tonight. Find more info here.

Have you been to Bakersfield yet? The OTR taco-whiskey-tequlia joint has only been open for about a month, but is already a force to be reckoned with. If you've tried to walk in on a Saturday night, you know how difficult it can be to get a table, so visit on a weeknight like tonight for a more chill vibe. Look out for our review of Bakersfield in this week's upcoming issue. SPOILER ALERT: We loved it.

As always, check out our music blog and To Do recommendations for more ways to spend your evening.

 
 

 

 

 
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