All Arts and Entertainment Content

All Arts and Entertainment Content

Chicago art club head to talk at museum group's fall luncheon

CHAMPAIGN – Kathy Cottong, director of The Arts Club of Chicago, will give a lecture titled "Gracious Provocation: The Arts Club of Chicago 1916-2008," at 12:45 p.m. Friday at the Champaign Country Club.

The talk is part of the Krannert Art Museum Council Fall Lecture Luncheon, which will begin with a council meeting at 11 a.m., a cash bar at 11:30 a.m. and lunch at noon.

Eat, sleep and gas up at unique sites along U.S. highways

With no fish boil in sight, Greg Martell opts for The Fish Wagon.

"I'm originally from Wisconsin and I live in Indiana now. Nobody has fish boils or fish fries there," Martell says. "That's hard when you love fish."

So when he's in Illinois twice a year for work at the Stone Ridge Dairy in rural Mansfield, he stops regularly at The Fish Wagon in Farmer City.

"I come to Stone Ridge once in the spring and once in the fall. And every Friday and Saturday night – this is where I eat," Martell adds as he places an order at The Fish Wagon window.

The Fish Wagon is owned and operated by Kevin and Hope Castle. It's a mobile example of roadside architecture – a restaurant on wheels. More precisely, it's a takeout diner in what used to be a motor home.

"This is something that came about on its own and it has taken on a life of its own," Hope Castle says. "This is our 10th year here."

The Fish Wagon is a modern-day twist on the horse-drawn lunch wagons that are the forerunner of the diner. The wagons would park in front of factories and offer reasonably priced lunches to workers. Before long, the wagons were parked in permanent locations and by the 1930s had evolved into the streamlined diner.

Roadside architecture is also sometimes called roadside Americana or even roadside archaeology. It is a wide and varied category, from stainless steel-sheathed diners to tile-roofed, mission-style gas stations to log-cabin motel cottages – all tied to America's love of the automobile and travel. A summary in three words: eat, sleep, gas.

Danville Symphony Orchestra tuning up for Goodman tribute

DANVILLE – The Danville Symphony Orchestra will open its 2008-09 season with "A Tribute to Benny Goodman" featuring the Dave Bennett Sextet as special guest.

The concert is at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Danville High School auditorium, 202 E. Fairchild St.

Parkland Theatre goes darkly humorous with 'The Pillowman'

CHAMPAIGN – The first time director Randi Collins Hard saw Martin McDonagh's "The Pillowman," at Illinois State University, she fell in love with the black comedy.

The artistic director of the Parkland Theatre describes it as amazingly deep and complex, with interwoven stories and ambiguities over what is fact and what is falsehood.

"It's a thriller, a mystery, a black comedy and a whodunit," she said. "Even at the end, you're left wondering whether you're right about your own conclusions."

Urbana's Community Center for the Arts adding new programs

URBANA – The Community Center for the Arts (C4A) will offer some new programs as well as older ones during the fall semester. The offerings for children and adults include private and group music instruction and visual arts classes.

Adult group classes are planned in fiddle, banjo, mandolin and guitar; a string band workshop; and a classical chamber music course. There will be group classes for children in early childhood music and for the Bow-Dacious String Band.

Quizzing coordinator of Urbana's award-winning art program

This past Friday, the city of Urbana received an honorable mention as part of the 2008 Arts Friendly Community Awards, handed out by the Illinois Arts Alliance and the Illinois Municipal League.

This past Friday, the city of Urbana received an honorable mention as part of the 2008 Arts Friendly Community Awards, handed out by the Illinois Arts Alliance and the Illinois Municipal League.

Urbana and Danville were among 15 communities to receive an honorable mention.

According to a news release, one reason for the nod to Urbana was its Gallery District Incentive program, established two years ago.

In Urbana, though, there has been a greater focus on the arts in general, and public art in particular, in recent years. We thought this was a good time to ask questions of Anna Hochhalter, public arts coordinator for the city of Urbana. Our questions (in bold type) and her answers, submitted via e-mail, follow. editors to speak on UI through Wednesday

URBANA – editors and technology writers Mark Frauenfelder and David Pescovitz will be guests-in-residence at Unit One/Allen Hall today through Wednesday. They will speak each night. All events are open to the public and take place in the South Rec Room of Allen Hall, 1005 W. Gregory St., U. Here is the schedule.

Don Moyer Boys & Girls Club plans bags tourney as new fundraiser

CHAMPAIGN – After becoming director of development for the Don Moyer Boys & Girls Club in May, Michael Byrd was asked to come up with a new fundraising event to replace the popular Champaign-Urbana Great Duck Race.

He was told to find something that would appeal to a cross-section of the community and people of all ages, something in which everyone could participate.

Beer tasting, chili cook-off Saturday in Urbana

URBANA – As autumn rolls around, so does the International Beer Tasting and Chili Cook-Off in downtown Urbana.

This year the annual event, presented by Jay Goldberg Events and the Urbana Business Association, will take place Saturday at Main Street and Broadway Avenue.

Exhibition at EIU features Chicago artist's sculptures

CHARLESTON – Ceramic and bronze sculptures by Chicago artist Ruth Duckworth, who is an internationally known figure in modern art, are on view through Oct. 26 at the Tarble Arts Center at Eastern Illinois University.

Recently, Duckworth was featured on "CBS Sunday Morning," and her art was surveyed in a three-year traveling retrospective exhibition that started at the Museum of Arts & Design in New York City and ended at the Renwick Gallery at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.