Category: Word

Pour Bros. will feature Illinois brews the first weekend of February

For their event The Land of Drinkin' (see what they did there), Pour Bros. Craft Taproom will be featuring beers that have been crafted right here in our state. 

From their Facebook event:

Four score and seven beers ago, we created a beer spectacle called The Land of Drinkin'. This event features highly sought after and hard to get brews from breweries near and far across the great state of Illinois!

The event kicks off at noon on Friday, February 1st. Stay tuned to the event page for updates on what beers they will be tapping.

Photo by Jessica Hammie


Smile Politely now seeking Music Editor

We're looking for a Music Editor here at Smile Politely. While being an Editor involves actual editing of content — this position requires much more of a producer mindset than straight-forward copy editing. 

Some components of being an Editor at Smile Politely include, but aren't limited to:

  • Putting together The Overture weekly
  • Curating the section each week and producing content of your own as well as writers
  • Interested and in-tune with the music scene in C-U, in multiple genres, for a comprehensive knowledge of the landscape
  • Recruiting writers to contribute to the section, as well as the magazine on the whole
  • Contributing to the SPlog each week, posting about a variety of subjects relevant to Champaign-Urbana
  • Contributing to the Weekender each week

There's a little bit of money on the table as an Editor, but the best candidates are ones that are engaged with the local music community, interested in perpetutating this component of C-U's culture within the magazine, recruiting writers, and one generally excited to be involved with the magazine as a community journalism project.

If you're interested, please email us at with the subject "Music Editor Applicant", as well as any relevant information about yourself, a resume, and any writing samples you might have. If you don't have writing samples, that's totally OK too.

Thanks for taking the time!


Crudo is adding American Mondays to their weekly events

Crudo Wine Bar is adding to their weekly events which include French Tuesdays and Thursday tastings. The first American Monday will feature bourbon and rye from Whiskey Acres in Dekalb — I've recently been introduced to these and they've become a go to — and they will also have Duckhorn's 2014 Cabernet, which is typically only available in California. 

Now you have an excuse to have a little fun on a Monday evening.

Crudo Wine Bar
116 N Walnut
M-Th 5 p.m.-midnight
F-Sa 5 p.m.-2 a.m.


Station Theatre holding auditions for Stupid xxxxxx Bird!

Attention local actors! The Celebration Company at the Station Theatre will be holding auditions for Stupid xxxxxx Bird! on Sunday, January 20 from 1 to 3:30 pm. 

Written by Aaron Posner, Stupid xxxxxx Bird!  will be directed by Kay Holley. Sides for cold readings will be available at the audition, so there is no need to prepare a monologue. 

Production notes, taken directly from the Facebook event, are as follows:

Stupid F#cking Bird is a sort of adaptation of Chekhov’s The Seagull

Dev suffers from an unrequited love for Mash, who composes cleverly despairing songs on the ukulele. Mash is desperately in love with Con, a passionate playwright who is deeply in love with Nina, his beautiful, vibrant muse, and childhood friend. Nina returns his love until she becomes entranced by Trig, a literary star who happens to be the lover of Con’s mother Emma, a successful actress. With a dead bird, a gun, and a little help from the audience, Con might be able to win Nina’s heart again...

In this edgy, funny, and compassionate reboot of Anton Chekhov’s famous play, The Seagull, Aaron Posner has created a hilarious and moving meditation on love, art, life, and the world we live in.

Dev: male, age 20s-40  Con’s best friend. Very nice guy, funny. Totally in love with Mash.

Mash: female, age 20s-40; Cook for Emma and Con. Cleverly dour, singer of songs of ennui and sadness. In love with Con. Plays ukulele.

Sorn: male, age 50s-60s Emma’s brother. Sweet and thoughtful, if sometimes sad.

Stage Manager

Check the audition event on Facebook for additional information about rehearsals and other scheduling commitments. 

Auditions for Stupid xxxxxx Bird!
January 20, 1 to 3:30 p.m.
The Celebration Company at the Station Theatre
223 N. Broadway,  Urbana

Photo from Facebook 


Kohinoor is on vacation

Well, technically, the folks who run Kohinoor are on vacation, but you get the point. The Downtown Champaign Indian restaurant will be closed from January 14th through January 23rd, and will reopen just in time for Restaurant Week, which begins on January 25th. 

Top photo by Jessica Hammie

Champaign City Council will decide on Clark Park Conservation District proposal next week

I am a frequent criss-crosser through the center of Champaign in my daily travels, and over the past several months I've noticed a handful of yard signs (at one point mixed in with the candidate signs) with "No Giant Houses on Our Small Lots" dotted across yards. Tuesday, January 15th, the Champaign City Council will make a decision about a proposal that's been born out of this "no giant houses" movement.

Here's the gist:

Homeowners in the Clark Park area are concerned with the City of Champaign exploring the possibility of allowing larger homes to be built on the smaller lots in their neighborhood.

A group of these concerned homeowners formed a steering committee to apply for Clark Park to be designated a Conservation District. This is not quite as intense as a Historic Preservation District, but it would put some restrictions on new construction or at least slow down the process and subject it to more scrutiny. 

This proposal has passed through the first two steps in the process: the Historic Preservation Commission and the Plan Commission, and will now face a vote by the City Council this Tuesday. 

You can read up on the specifics of this on the City of Champaign website, and also dig into the concerns of the residents here. The city's site also gives information about how to give your input in the matter, if this is an issue that you feel strongly about.

Photo from the website


Illini Hillel and University YMCA are bringing a Holocaust remembrance exhibit to campus

The exhibit is called Besa: A Code of Honor - Muslim Albanians that Rescued Jews During the Holocaust, and comes from Yad Vashem: The World Holocaust Remembrance Center. January 24th is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and the community is invited to the University YMCA to a kickoff event with speakers and refreshments. 

According to the press release, "Besa means “to keep the promise.” It serves as the highest ethical code in Albania. Following the German occupation in Albania in 1943, the Muslim-majority country of Albania protected their Jewish citizens and provided refuge to Jewish people from other parts of Europe. Almost all of the Jewish people living within Albanian borders during the war survived."

This is an interfaith endeavor, and speakers will include Imam Ousmane Sawadogo from CIMIC. Ambassador Teuta Sahatqija, the Republic of Kosovo's General Consulate in New York, and Ines Demiri, the Consulate's First Secretary will be in attendance as special guests.

The exhibit involves a collaboration of several groups including the Y as well as Central Illinois Mosque and Islamic Center, Champaign-Urbana Jewish Federation, Illini Hillel, the Champaign-Urbana Jewish Endowment Fund, the Interfaith Alliance of Champaign County, Interfaith in Action, Sinai Temple, the Program in Jewish Culture and Society at Illinois and Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity – Delta Chapter.


What are your weekend breakfast plans?

Earlier this week, we shared the news that Bunny's now serves breakfast on the weekends. We're not wanting for breakfast options in C-U. From Sam's Cafe's very special French toast, to Silvercreek's fancy-ish breakfast buffet, there are options at every price point, every level of health-consciousness, and in just about every C-U restaurant neighborhood. 

Some of my favorites are the aforementioned Sam's and Silvercreek, but also Harvest Market, Huaraches Moroleon, Courier Cafe, and Sammy's Pancake House. La Mixteca serves breakfast, too, and it's great. Check out our Brunch Hunt column for more ideas. 

Photos by Jessica Hammie


It’s National Mentoring Month…want to be a mentor?

January is National Mentoring Month, and the CU One-to-One Mentoring program is looking for a few good mentors, especially men. And no, they aren't trying to be sexist here, there just tends to be an uneven men to women ratio amongst the mentors in Champaign and Urbana, and there are just as many boys that could benefit from a mentor as there are girls. Mentors spend an hour a week with their mentee, a student in 3rd grade through high school in the Unit 4 and District 116 school districts. 

Some stats from CU One-to-One:

Research confirms that with a mentor, at-risk youth are:

  • 52% less likely than their peers to skip a day of schools
  • 55% more likely to be enrolled in college
  • 81% more likely to participate in sports or extracurricular activities
  • 78% more likely to volunteer regularly in their communities
  • 130% more likely to hold leadership positions

The program has a goal of recruiting 50 more male mentors, though they are always welcoming to more women as well. The next training is January 29th from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Urbana Middle School. If you are interested in attending, contact:

Champaign Schools: Lauren Smith, 351-3722,
Urbana Schools: Thomas Howley, 384-3685,

Photo from Facebook