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Research Park and iFlyCU hosting lunch-time info session tomorrow

Tomorrow, the U of I's Research Park and iFlyCU are joining forces for a lunch-time info session on Willard's new flight offerings from United Airlines.

The info session will take place at Research Park's EnterpriseWorks (60 Hazelwood Dr., Champaign), and will offer lunch as well. A win-win, really. For more info, check out the Instagram post below:


Champaign Police Department rolling out body cameras this Spring

From the City of Champaign's newsletter:

Police Department Rolls Out New Body Cameras

CPD Body CameraPolice body-worn cameras are the latest tool in the City of Champaign's promotion of an honest, transparent, and inclusive government. Beginning this month, the Champaign Police Department will begin its roll out of body cameras, which will record daily police-citizen interactions.

We invite you to learn more about CPD’s implementation of body cameras, including their function, limitations, and the guidelines around use, privacy, and recording retention. Learn more by watching the video below, or review the FAQs and other resources on the City's website.


Tony Conrad: Completely in the Present screening happening April 9th at the Art Theater

From the press release:

For Immediate Release:

What: Hallways Microcinema Vol. 19 presents a documentary film screening of Tony Conrad: Completely in the Present along with a pre-screening experimental music performance by Champaign-Urbana’s SUNSAT IV.

When: Sunday, April 9th at 7:30 pm (7:30-9:30pm)

Where: The Art Theater Co-Op in Champaign Illinois

126 W. Church St.
Champaign, IL 61820

Fee: $8.  All ages.

Purchase Tickets Online: Here.

Contact — For More Information: Hallways Microcinema programmer, David Gracon

Email: or mobile at 541-914-7113

Film Description:

TONY CONRAD: COMPLETELY IN THE PRESENT (2016, 1 hour 42 minutes in length) a documentary film by Tyler Hubby

Tony Conrad: Completely in the Present is a non-fiction film examining the pioneering life and works of artist, musician, and educator, Tony Conrad.

Tony Conrad was one the great American artists of our time, yet to the world at large he remains criminally under appreciated.  Since the early 1960s, Conrad's films and compositions have been the stuff of legend for artists and musicians everywhere. His vast, inter-disciplinary repertoire has single-handedly created and influenced major film and compositional movements.  He performed in and recorded the soundtrack to Jack Smith’s legendary Flaming Creatures; he turned the paradigms of cinema upside down with The Flicker, a film composed of only black and white frames; his development and practice of Just Intonation and Minimalism through his work with Stockhausen and La Monte Young still has the music establishment scratching their heads; his pivotal role in the formation of The Velvet Underground has directly or indirectly influenced everyone who has picked up a guitar since; as an early adopter of activist public access television he democratized the emerging medium of portable video.  In his later years he continued to perform and make work that pushed the boundaries of reason for which he has finally begun to receive worldwide attention.

Utilizing intimate footage of Tony and his collaborators shot over the last twenty-two years, as well as his own archive of recordings and films, Tony Conrad: Completely in the Present mirrors Conrad’s own playfully radical approach to art making. The non-linear structure allows Conrad to wildly free associate his streams of consciousness, revealing an honest and humane way of navigating a remarkable, creative life. 

Film Trailer: 

Film Webpage:

Related Reviews/Comments:

"Highly recommended" –                                       

“A sharp, sweet, eloquent documentary about the merriest, most artistically expansive minimalist on record.  Many a sonic imagination was fed by Conrad. His work and his life asserted the importance of listening for the sounds nobody else has heard.   A love letter to a specific period of downtown Manhattan bohemia…Hubby’s film captures Conrad in all his facets, as longtime Buffalo, N.Y., media professor, and more broadly as a man determined to make "abstract art funny, happy, energetic, joyful."  Now a sort of wake, but because the film’s really good, it’ll be a wake full of life.”  – Chicago Tribune

"An exploration of avant-garde art that has little time for elitism or pretense. Hubby captures an artistic personality that could manifest big ideas without a shred of snobbery, could deflate pomposity while still inviting deep thought.” – The Hollywood Reporter

"It’s hard to imagine a better tribute to Tony Conrad than Tyler Hubby’s film. Tony Conrad: Completely in the Present does an admirable job of compressing a massively important and influential career into a feature-length documentary without feeling rushed. It’s tough to imagine watching this film and not feeling immediately compelled to dive into Tony Conrad’s work." – Daily Grindhouse

“An unpretentious portrait of a singular artist. It requires no prerequisite knowledge of the subject, but it never shies away from its complex radicalism” – The WIRE

"Conrad’s desire to upset the distinctions between artist, audience and media is one theme running through Hubby’s warm portrait of the artist as a lifelong contrarian…capturing a working life spent running counter to master plans and grand narratives, yet still devoted to perpetual motion." – Sight&Sound

Related Tony Conrad Press:

SUNSAT IV Information (live pre-screening music performance):

SUNSAT IV transmits an arresting array of transdimensional sound via freely guided improvisation. The ensemble communicates in both the acoustic and electronic realm, and experiments with sound, space, and time. The Urbana-Champaign trio is Brad Decker (laptop electronics, bass, guitar), Rick Deja (saxophone, flute, percussion), and Jason Finkelman (laptop electronics, percussion), and often incorporates special guests.  

Hallways Microcinema Information:

Since 2015, Hallways Microcinema has been a do-it-yourself (DIY) space located at an undisclosed location in downtown Champaign, Illinois.  This underground venue hosts semi-regular screenings of hard to find experimental and documentary film and video works; ambient and experimental music; poetry readings, performance art and lectures outside of the academy.  David Gracon is the programmer (although the space is always open to collaboration) and host of Hallways Microcinema.  More recently, Hallways Microcinema has decided to host various pop up events in the Champaign Urbana community such as this current collaboration with the Art Theater Co-Op.  

For more information: Facebook Group or contact David Gracon at or by mobile: 541-914-7113

Programmer Information (see contact above):

David Gracon is the programmer and host of Hallways Microcinema; a documentary filmmaker and associate professor of media studies and digital production at Eastern Illinois University.  He is a native of Buffalo, NY and has been invested in post-punk, indie, experimental music scenes, zine communities and college radio; as well as activist orientated experimental film, video and documentary communities and collectives since the mid 90’s.  He completed his Ph.D in Communication and Society at the University of Oregon and MA and BA at the University at Buffalo (SUNY) in the Department of Media Study and Sociology.  

David is a former student and friend of the late Tony Conrad. This event is a tribute to his former friend and teacher.  


Polyvinyl Records hosting first-ever pop-up shop this Saturday

One of the perks of living in a town with a nationally-renown record label is that you sometimes (in this case, for the first time) get to experience cool things that they do.

This weekend exemplifies that exact scenario, with Polyvinyl Records hosting their first-ever pop-up shop this weekend. Among the activities include the opportunity to hear some new music, win some free posters and vinyl, enter to win a $50 Polyvinyl gift card, and last but not least, free coffee and doughnuts!

For more information, check out the Facebook event for the pop-up here, and take a look at the details below:

It's the first ever Polyvinyl Pop-Up Shop! We'll be slingin' the latest and greatest Polyvinyl releases, merch, and more, PLUS:

* Hear new music *
* Vinyl & Poster Giveaways *
* Fresh Coffee & Donuts *
* Raffle for a $50 PV Gift Card *

Saturday, April 8 | 11 AM - 4 PM
717 S Neil St.
Champaign, IL 61820
(Parking and entrance through the back off Randolph st)

Hope to see you there!


Pizzeria Antica releases new wine list

If you want (and you probably should) some Italian wine to go with your pizza at Pizzeria Antica in Downtown Champaign, you're in luck - they've just refreshed their wine list, most notably, their house white, red and rose'. They're also introducing some craft Italian beers, for the utmost authenticity.

To read the full list, check out Antica's interactive Facebook listing below:


Play the Altgeld Hall chimes at home

If you've spent any time on the University of Illinois campus you're familiar with the beloved chimes at Altgeld Hall. Since 1920, the chimes have announced the time every quarter hour. Students and faculty have also been treated to pieces ranging from the Harry Potter theme to Hail to the Orange during the noon hour. Unfortunately, the chimes have been temporarily silenced (except for the automatic quarter hour signals) as Altgeld and its bell tower undergo much needed renovation and repair. However, you can still hear Hail to the Orange and test out your chiming skills by visiting the Virtual Chime Player on the Altgeld website. 

So if you're looking for something to distract you from work (like you needed something else), check it out.

Edited to add: According to Cody Jones, chimesplayer, there's more going on here than meets the eye. Check out his Reddit thread to find out more. 


Japan House hosting Spring Open House on April 22nd

If you've ever wanted to experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, learn from a Japanese chef, or experience a Japan House garden tour, you're in luck. On April 22nd, Japan House will be hosting their annual Spring Open House, which will feature all the above (and more) for free (or for $6 if you choose to participate in the tea ceremony). No reservation is required.

This is a fantastic way to experience one of Champaign-Urbana's cultural gems, and the fact that it's so affordable makes it all the more enticing.

For more information, check out the description of the Facebook event below:

Visiting Japanese Chef Suzuko Enomoto will speak at 2:00 pm on Japanese flavors and the true tastes of sweet, sour, salty, bitter, and umami. There will be tasting of each flavor. Traditional Japanese tea ceremonies will be offered for the special rate of $6 throughout the day, as well as garden tours by Mr. Jim Bier, Japan House Gardens designer and gardener. Free and open to all. Reservations not required. Tickets for tea ceremony will be sold that day.


Sustainable screening and Q+A happening March 30th at Harvest Market

Here's an educational opportunity available to you in the near future: There will be a screening and Q+A session following of the film Sustainablewhich discusses the farm system and the community that surrounds it, at Harvest Market. Check out the Facebook event here, the event takes place on Thursday, March 30th at 5:30 p.m.

Joins us March 30 in our upstairs Mezzanine for a special showing of the film "Sustainable"...for FREE!

It's a film about the land, the people who work it and what must be done to sustain it for future generations. It's a vital investigation of the economic and environmental instability of America’s food system, from the agricultural issues we face — soil loss, water depletion, climate change, pesticide use — to the community of leaders who are determined to fix it. The narrative of the film focuses on Marty Travis, a seventh-generation farmer in central Illinois who watched his land and community fall victim to the pressures of big agribusiness. Determined to create a proud legacy for his son, Marty transforms his profitless wasteland and pioneers the sustainable food movement in Chicago.

Marty Travis, the farmer featured in the film and Will Travis will be here for Q&A after the movie.

We will also be serving popcorn and cornbread made with ingredients from Severson Farms!

The movie features Marty Travis of Spence Farms, who supplies Harvest Market's bakery and bulk sections with product. So, there's a direct connection to the store and the surrounding community.

Here's the trailer, and some information about the showing below.


There is no hiding from the facts - rising temperatures, drought, soil loss, chemicals in our food, antibiotic resistance, declining bee populations, obesity, diabetes, shorter life expectancy - America needs help. Sustainable reveals the crisis facing America’s food system, and the community of leaders who are determined to fix it.

Amidst the cornfields of Illinois lives the hero of the film - Marty Travis, a seventh-generation farmer who watched his land and community fall victim to the pressures of big agribusiness. Determined to create a proud legacy for his son, Marty transforms his profitless wasteland and pioneers the sustainable food movement in Chicago.

Greg Wade, a visionary young breadmaker, works with Marty to revitalize ancient grain production in the Midwest, joining an artisan bread movement that’s sweeping our country. Together, they prove that traditional bread is not only healthier, it is also better for the environment.

From Klaas Martens’ Einkorn fields in rural New York to Bill Niman’s cattle ranch off the Pacific coast, industry pioneers around the nation join in to reveal the profound connection between human health and environmental protection. In Iowa, Matt Liebman discovers a solution to combat the trifecta of drought, flooding and soil runoff, and a young Amish man in Ohio emerges as an agricultural leader who will feed the world despite climate extremes and limited natural resources. Additional key interviews include: Rick Bayless, Dan Barber, Mark Bittman, Marion Nestle, John Ikerd, Kelly Brownell, Nicolette Niman and Fred Kirschenmann.

Sustainable is a story of hope and transformation, about passion for the land and a promise that it can be restored to once again sustain us. 


Even a majority of downstate residents & Republicans want weed legalized in IL according to new poll

A poll conducted by the Paul Simon Public Policy institute this week found that there is overwhelming support for the legalization of marijuana in Illinois. But what's even more interesting is that the poll breaks down how certain geographical areas in the state and different political parties feel about the measure.

At first glance, this is unsurprising - Chicago favors legalization by staggering 52 percentage points and decriminalization by even more (64 points). The suburbs are slightly less. Then, when the poll is broken down by political party, we see that weed legalization isn't really that partisan of an issue anymore - in fact, 54% of downstate residents surveyed, (generally some of the last to come around on these sorts of things) surveyed actually are in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana. The case is the same with 52% of the state's total Republican population.

My, how the times are changing, folks. To read the full poll, and to jump into the data, click here.

This comes on the heels of legislation introduced last week to do just that - legalize recreational marijuana, though it could take some time. Regardless of whether you use marijuana recreationally or not, legalizing in a state like Illinois would inevitably reduce the tax-payer burden for a non-violent prison population, as well as provide some much-needed tax revenue for a state in such dire shape as Illinois is.