Smile Politely

Weekender: August 9-11


Cat Days of Summer, Champaign County Humane Society, 2 p.m. through the weekend

Alright, so there’s a chance you love animals. You have to, I mean, look at that cat right there, hanging out. How awesome is that? Well, you’ve probably been looking for a reason to bring one of these guys/gals home with you to hang out with. Here’s your chance to make that reason into reality.

Champaign County Humane Society is located over in Urbana, and it’s a bit hidden. It’s on 1911 E. Main Street, Urbana, so plug that into your GPS and head over there for this deal. Adopt two kittens/cats under six years old for the price of one, and cats over the age of six are only $5. I mean, look at these cats. And if cats aren’t your thing, they have other friendly dogs, critters, and even a pig(!) available that are up for adoption. (PS)

DJ Legtwo, Mike & Kayla, DJ Belly, Cole Rabenort, DJ Isaac Arms, The Velvet Elvis, 6 p.m.

As you’ve seen through our various articles and SPlogs about new businesses around Champaign-Urbana, there is a lot going on. There’s money to be spent to help support local businesses, and there’s something happening tonight to help those causes along. Flying Machine Coffee is a new coffee shop opening up in Urbana, owned and operated by Josh Lucas. Plant Mode is the project of Matthis Helmick, as he’s looking to open a storefront on Washington Street in Downtown Champaign. The Butcher is Josh Boyd’s new endevour, you might recognize him from Black Dog or Carmon’s (RIP).

Anyway, they’re hosting an event to help raise more funds to help these projects along. Good stuff all around, regardless of the great lineup of music they have slated. DJ Legtwo, aka Larry Gates, aka Curb Service, is leading the way with a bunch of others mixing and performing all their own. (PS)

Freud’s Last Session, The Station Theatre, 8:00 PM, $15

Last weekend we claimed that it was your last chance to see this fascinating play starring Station all-star Gary Ambler and rookie phenom Jesse Angelo. We weren’t exactly lying; we just didn’t know then that the show would be extended for another two nights by popular demand. So, definitively, this is your last weekend to see Mark St. Germain’s literate, philosophical two-hander about an imagined meeting between famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud (played by Ambler) and brash upstart C. S. Lewis (played by Angelo). The two debate the nature of religion, belief, government, sex, and humanity in the space of about 90 minutes, all with the threat of WWII looming outside the window of Freud’s office. Directed by Tom Mitchell, this intimate work fits perfectly into the confines of the Station’s little black-box theatre. Call 217-384-4000 for reservations, but do it now; it may already be sold out. Friday and Saturday only. (MG)


Yoga in the Park at Meadowbrook Park, free, 9 a.m.

If, like me, your summer has been full of good food, dark beer, and general sluggishness, the Urbana Park District’s final Yoga in the Park class of the summer may be a welcome change of pace. The classes take place in the lawn near the parking lot off Windsor Road. Bring your own mat if you have one, or show up a few minutes early to snag one of theirs. (RP)


Pewter Casting (Make-a-tion 2013)Makerspace Urbana, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

What is pewter? It’s a beloved metal by artists and makers alike, perfect for jewelry, figurines, earrings, robot parts, etc., and casting it is super easy! We’ll show you how. This workshop will cover casting with both specialized casting supplies and “make-your-own” affordable substitutes so you can learn and practice the craft without a large initial investment. Due to the use of fire and very hot materials (molten metal!) we request parents be present to help children who want to participate. Cost: $20 (or pay what you can)

The workshop will take place at Makerspace Urbana located in the basement room #16 of the Independent Media Center in Urbana. The space can be a little tricky to find but if you enter through the back Bike Project door (near the radio tower) and take your first left, we’re at the end of the hall. If you have any trouble finding us, just call (816) 287-1717. (DM)

Honey 101, Flatlander classroom, Urbana, 1:00-2:00 p.m., $10 owners/$15 non-owners

Urbana beekeeper Maggie Wachter is back with more honey-how-tos. You’ll work with raw honey comb to uncap, centrifuge, and strain some local honey. Each participant will leave the class with a half pound of local honey – jars and honey provided! This sounds like a fun and affordable way to add a special treat to your kitchen. (JH)

Champaign-Urbana Days, Douglass Park, 512 E. Grove St., Champaign, 11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m

Stop by Douglass Park this weekend for C-U Days. This family-friendly event, organized by the Champaign Park District, will feature live entertainment, a softball tournament, a basketball tournament, inflatables, and, of course, food. Douglass Park is great – it even has a hill! The weather will be comfortable and sunny, so bring the kiddos out for an end of the summer hurrah. (JH)



The Henhouse Prowlers, The Iron Post, $10, 9:30 p.m.

The Iron Post is my favorite local place for cheap bottles, dim lighting, and bluesy music, and The Henhouse Prowlers look to be a particularly promising show.

From The Henhouse Prowler’s website:

After eight years of hard work and a relentless tour schedule, Chicago’s Henhouse Prowlers have gained a reputation for their highly original, tradition-inspired bluegrass built on a strong foundation of intricate harmonies and electrifying stage energy.

The Henhouse Prowlers use traditional bluegrass as a base, and make it their own by providing a show that’s danceable throughout with uptempo drive and bouncing mid-tempo grooves, all while covering contemporary topics in a largely original repertoire. Their reverence for the forefathers of bluegrass is palpable as they push the music forward on their own path. (RP)

Les Miserables, Parkland College Theatre, 7:30 PM

This is the final weekend for Champaign-Urbana Theatre Company’s revival of the beloved Les Miserables, featuring a host of local talent and directed by Stephen Fiol. From the CUTC website: “This international smash-hit may be the most popular musical in the world. In 19th century France, Jean Valjean is released from 19 years of unjust imprisonment, but finds nothing in store for him but mistrust and mistreatment. He breaks his parole in hopes of starting a new life, initiating a life-long struggle for redemption as he is relentlessly pursued by police inspector Javert, who refuses to believe Valjean can change his ways. Finally, during the Paris student uprising of 1832, Javert must confront his ideals after Valjean spares his life and saves that of the student revolutionary who has captured the heart of Valjean’s adopted daughter. His world-view shattered, Javert commits suicide, and Valjean at last attains the peace he has sought for so long.” (MG)


All event information is accurate to the best of our abilities, but sometimes we make mistakes and sometimes event information, times, prices, etc., change after we look them up. Whenever possible, we’ve provided a link to the original event page; you should always double-check the source before you make any firm plans. Thanks for your understanding.

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