Smile Politely

Speakers in C-U: April 6–12

You live near a major university and a community college. There are smart people that come here every week to talk to the general public about interesting topics. Perhaps you were not aware of this fact, or were overwhelmed by the sheer number of opportunities for possible enlightenment. If that’s the case, Smile Politely understands and is here to help. Here are several events going on in town this week. Check out one or more of them if you have time.

If you have a community event, speaker, or film event that you’d like to see featured on Listen Up!, send the event information to joelgillespie [at] smilepolitely [dot] com by Friday the week prior to the event. Listen Up! runs on Mondays.

WHAT: “The Inside Scoop on the Concert Promotion Business,” by Steven Schankman, co-founder and president of Contemporary Productions in St. Louis

WHEN: Tuesday, April 7 @ 12 noon

WHERE: 192 Lincoln Hall

Schankman will stick around after the talk to sign copies of his book, Produced by Contemporary: “the story of how two kids from St. Louis began booking local rock ‘n’ roll bands and in 30 years built the company into one of the country’s top five entertainment promotion companies.”


WHAT: Planet U: The Human Story of Climate Change

WHEN: Wednesday, April 8 to Friday, April 10

WHERE: Wednesday at the Illini Union; Thursday and Friday at the Beckman Institute

There are literally dozens of speakers participating in this wide-ranging conference, and it would be difficult to adequately summarize here. Check out the schedule here and the speaker descriptions here.


WHAT: “Retrocommissioning @ UIUC — Saving the Planet Two Buildings at a Time,” by Karl Helmink and Damon McFall, UIUC Facilities and Services Dept.

WHEN: Wednesday, April 8 @ 12 noon

WHERE: Stephen J. Warner Conference Room at ISTC (1 Hazelwood Dr., Champaign)

From the announcement: “Mr. Helmink and Mr. McFall will discuss the steady progress and significant accomplishments that retrocommissioning (RCx) has achieved on the Champaign-Urbana campus. They will also give insight as to their methods and systematic approach to discovering the energy conservation measures used to reduce a building’s energy use by an average of 20%. RCx has recently initiated a second team, enabling them to reach out to two buildings at a time. Since its inception, RCx has completed work in the following buildings: 1) National Soybean Research Center, 2) Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 3) Newmark Civil Engineering Building, 4) Turner Hall, 5) ACES Library, Info. & Alumni Center, 6) Music Building, 7) Mechanical Engineering Laboratory, 8) Animal Sciences Laboratory, 9) Madigan Laboratory and 10) Chemical Life Sciences Laboratory.”


WHAT: Poetry reading by Oni Buchanan, Donna Stonecipher, and Tyehimba Jess

WHEN: Wednesday, April 8 @ 4 p.m.

WHERE: Illini Union Bookstore

Buchanan (pictured at left) will be reading from her book of poetry, SPRING, recently released on University of Illinois Press. All three are National Poetry Series winners, so celebrate National Poetry Month in style at the IUB.



WHAT: “Make Champaign-Urbana an Active Community,” by Mark Fenton, health representative with the Partnership for a Walkable America

WHEN: Wednesday, April 8 @ 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.

WHERE: The 2:30 p.m. session is in Illini Union Room 217, and the 7 p.m. session will be in the Provena Covenant Hospital Auditorium (1400 W. Park, Urbana).

Fenton, host of PBS’s “America’s Walking,” will host an afternoon seminar for fitness advocates, and an evening event for the general public. Check out the event flyer here (pdf) for more information on this event, sponsored by C-U Safe Routes to School, CUMTD, the U of I, the City of Urbana, and Provena.


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