Welcome to Smile Politely’s suggestion box for things to do this weekend.
Whose road? Our road!: Head out and piss off some cars at Critical Mass, an organized coincidence bike ride which will meet at the Alma Mater at 5:15 p.m. and take over the streets in proportion to its numbers. Hopefully no one will get checked by a cop:
Third time’s a charm: Dubstep Massacre 3 hits the dancefloor at Cowboy Monkey at 11:30 p.m. All your favorite 217Mafia DJ’s will be there, and the $2 cover charge is more than reasonable. Be sure to get there early, as the Facebook invite has 124 confirmed guests.
Whiskey in Tolono: Rademakers brings the heat this Friday when they present one of the finest, hardest-working rock bands in the Midwest, the Whiskey Daredevils. Expect drinks. And lots of fun.
Art good. AIDS bad: Artists Against AIDS will be going on all weekend at the Orpheum Children’s Theater, including from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, 1 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, and 1 to 7 p.m. on Sunday. Benjamin Betsem Atiback will be among the featured artists, who will be selling their works, with at least 50 percent of the proceeds benefiting the Greater Community AIDS Project.
A one-woman band: Quirky Boston (the city, not the band) singer-songwriter Audrey Ryan is just as comfortable with an accordion as a guitar. She performs with Ryan Groff and Casados in the Mike & Molly’s beer garden at 9 p.m., weather permitting. Read our interview with her.
More art: Drink some wine, snack on some cheese, and meet the soon-to-be grads/local artists of the UIUC’s MFA program. Immerse yourself in their art exhibit which opens tonight at 5 p.m. in the Link Gallery at the Krannert Art Museum. The exhibition closes at 7 p.m., but runs through May 3.
Zombies madness: Directed by UIUC student, Eric Roth, A Zombie Play takes the stage for two nights at the McKinley Foundation. It is a fantastically witty show guaranteed to make you hungry for brains! $5 at the door and showtimes for Friday and Saturday are 8:30, 9:30, and 10:30 p.m.
Run away the hate: If you didn’t get your running fix two weeks ago at the Illinois Marathon, you can join in a good cause at the Run Against Racism this Saturday morning at Crystal Lake Park. The YWCA is sponsoring the annual 5K, which has decided to add a 10K and a 1.5K Youth Run as well. Races begin at 9 a.m., and racism stops now, right?
So, how ’bout that Twitter, huh?: This Web 2.0 thing really seems to be catching on, and the folks at CU BarCamp will help get you up to speed. Head to Collective Turf at 110 W. Main St. in Urbana at 2 p.m. to learn about Drupal, Ruby on Rails, Twitter, search engine optimization, and whatever else the kids are into these days.
Broadband for everyone: Your stimulus dollars at work may deliver C-U a publicly-owned, fiber-optic network to supply broadband access for all. Read up, then attend the informal meeting on Saturday morning at 8 a.m. in Room 126 at the GSLIS building.
Get back to your roots: Help raise some funds for the C-U Folk and Roots Festival — coming up in September — by heading out to the Iron Post from 6 to 10 p.m. It’s the always-hard-to-pass-up four bands for five bucks plan, with Bruiser and the Virtues, Big Grove Zydeco, and the Prairie Dogs, plus an unnamed fourth band. I’ve heard rumors that it’s Ralph Stanley, but don’t tell anyone where you heard it.
Bowling, Lebowski style: Smile Politely is proud to sponsor the 1st annual Lebowski Achievers Festival. This is possibly the coolest idea for killing an otherwise boring Sunday: bowling, following by a costume contest and a screening of The Big Lebowski. The bowling happens at Old Orchard Lanes; the rest at The Canopy. Bowling starts at 3 p.m.
Gomorrah at the Art: Maybe you’re up for a different sort of film screening this Sunday. The acclaimed winner of the Grand Jury Prize at Cannes, Gomorrah, opens at Boardman’s Art Theatre this Friday. Since he’s in town this weekend, here’s what Roger Ebert had to say about the movie: “Gomorrah looks grimy and sullen, and has no heroes, only victims. That is its power.” We leave you with the trailer.