Smile Politely

Weekender: July 4-6


Watch, Walk, or Run in the Champaign County Freedom Celebration’s 5K Race/Walk, 7:30 a.m. (registration opens), race start Florida Ave. (between First and Fourth street) across from Memorial Stadium

There’s more to the 4th of July than grilling. The Champaign County Freedom Celebration has been organizing a 5K Race/Walk since 1994, and there’s also a free Youth Run at the same time. They are still looking for volunteers, or you can register the day of. More information here. (RP)

Burgers, Farren’s, 308 N Randolph, Champaign, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

If you’re feigning sickness to avoid an Independence Day BBQ, you’re still going to need to eat, and lucky for you Farren’s open all day tomorrow. Check out the two special burgers: the Benedict Burger (half pound burger topped with smoked ham, provolone cheese, a fried egg and smothered in hollandaise sauce) or the Cubano Pork Burger (half pound ground pork burger topped with smoked Swiss, smoked ham, chipotle mayo and pickles). Nothing says Freedom like meat topped with more meat. (JH)

Spindependence Day Festival, The Highdive, Soma, Cowboy Monkey, prices vary, starting at noon

Friday is the final day of the Spindependence Day celebration with a ton of DJs spinning at a bunch of places around Downtown Champaign. If you’re out and about, just check out the schedule and see what you might want to see, stop by, have a midday cocktail, and enjoy yourself. It’s your day off, people. Booze it up a bit. (PS)


Stars and Stripes Doughnuts, Pandamonium Doughnuts at Urbana’s Market at the Square, 7 a.m.

What’s better than eating unnaturally shaped food? Get yourself to the market very early to avoid the insane doughnut line. Then order the star-shaped, vanilla bean glazed, blue and white striped doughnut. And a maple bacon apple fritter. (JH)


Chinatown, The Art Theater Co-op, 7 p.m.

As of July 1st, the film noir classic Chinatown will no longer be available on Netflix streaming. So, if you were planning to watch it and just hadn’t gotten around to it, TOO LATE. As a consolation, let me suggest that you go to the lovely Art Theatre Co-op and see it on the big screen instead! Per the Art’s website: “A landmark movie in the film noir tradition, Roman Polanski’s Chinatown stands as a true screen classic. Jack Nicholson is private eye Jake Gittes, living off the murky moral climate of sunbaked, pre-war Southern California. Hired by a beautiful socialite (Faye Dunaway) to investigate her husband’s extra-marital affair, Gittes is swept into a maelstrom of double dealings and deadly deceits, uncovering a web of personal and political scandals that come crashing together for one, unforgettable night in Chinatown. Co-starring film legend John Huston and featuring an Academy Award-winning script by Robert Towne, Chinatown captures a lost era in a masterfully woven movie that remains a timeless gem.” (MG)

Orphans, The Station Theatre, 8 p.m.

A dynamic three-person play by Lyle Kessler and directed by Timothy O’Neal, The Station Theatre in Urbana will present Orphans this weekend (after a night off for the 4th). As the Station synopsizes: “Two orphaned brothers are living in a decrepit North Philadelphia row house. Treat, the eldest, supports his damaged younger sibling by petty thievery, and makes the house a virtual prison for the seemingly simple-minded Phillip. One night he kidnaps a rich older man, Harold, who turns out to have his own motives and becomes the father figure the boys have always yearned for.” Starring Lincoln Machula, Coy Benning Wentworth, and Maxwell Tomaszewski. To reserve seats, call 217-384-4000 or visit the Station website. (MG)

Hank., Animals in Human Attire, Woodie, Mike ‘N Molly’s, $7, 9 p.m.

The definition of summer in Downtown Champaign is sitting outside in the beergarden at Mike ‘N Molly’s watching live music. Well, this weekend you can do just that, as Hank. is performing for the last time as an outfit. They’re joined by Milwaukee’s Animals in Human Attire, which we spoke with earlier this week, as well as Woodie, who put out a pretty awesome set of songs earlier in the year. Check all three out, and enjoy a night out after the 4th. (PS)





Mahomet Auto Fest in downtown Mahomet, 12-6 p.m., free

Take a short 15 minute drive to downtown Mahomet today and enjoy classic cars, raffles, Slot & Wing show and demonstration, model care contest, local crafts and food. It is free and sounds like a solid event. (SL)

Giving it Forward at Indi Go Artist Co-Op, 12–7 p.m., free

Local water color artists are donating all of the money earned from this gallery showing to the Chez Family Foundation Center for Wounded Veterans. The show runs July 2nd to July 13th with an opening reception July 11th at 7 p.m. Support wounded veterans and local art! (SL)

The Surreal Deal in Hessel Park, 6:30-8 p.m., Hessel Park, free

The Champaign Park District is featuring The Surreal Deal as part of their ongoing summer concert series. Grab some chairs or a blanket and relax in the shade to some covers as you usher out your 4th of July weekend. (RP)


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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