Smile Politely

Weekender: May 12-14

an image of a prairie field on a sunny day. There are blooming flowers and green grass taking up two thirds of the image and blue sky with fluffy white clouds in the top one third of the image.

Friday, May 12th

Inside the new Fernando's restaurant is a glass divider with the name of the restaurant and the cow logo on either side of the letters. The glass is on a light brown butcher block counter separating the dining room from the kitchen. Photo by Alyssa Buckley.
Alyssa Buckley

Eat tacos at a restaurant grand opening, Fernando’s, 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., $3 each

The newest restaurant in Champaign is a brick-and-mortar location for Fernando’s Tacos & More trucks. The two taco trucks can be found in Downtown Champaign at dinnertime, but if you want to sit down and enjoy the casual Mexican cuisine, visit the restaurant version. The grand opening is May 12th at 11 a.m., but Fernando’s restaurant will be open daily after Friday to serve the food truck’s menu (on real plates!) in a casual dining room. (AB)

The sign on the wall of Krannert Art Museum: Black font reads "Art & Design 2023" ; large pink bubble letters read "BFA exhibition"
Jessica Hammie

Check out some fine art at the School of Art & Design’s BFA Exhibition, Krannert Art Museum, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., free

This weekend is your last chance to see the School of Art and Design’s annual BFA exhibition. On display are works by graduating BFA seniors in Art Education, Graphic Design, Industrial Design, New Media, and Studio Art. This exhibition was recently highlighted in our Five things in arts this month: May 2023 list. (SSO)

Listen to jazz from Urbana school bands, Urbana High School (1002 S Race St), 7 to 9 p.m., $5/ person or $12/family

Urbana school bands — UMS Jazz Band, UHS A Capella, UHS Jazz Combo, UHS Jazz Band — will be performing a wide range of music Friday evening. Light refreshments will be available for purchase. (JH)

See Rent (School Edition), Champaign Central High School, 7 p.m. (also Saturday at 2:30 p.m.), $10-15

Champaign Central High School’s acting class is putting on a production of Rent this weekend. Rent (School Edition) is a modified version of Jonathan Larson’s Tony Award winning musical about struggling artists and musicians living in New York. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. The show is rated PG-13 for some mature content. (SSO)

Music artist Gay Meat clad in a puppy hat, sleeveless bright neon t-shirt, with his legs crossed
Gay Meat on Facebook

Get some tasty food then stay for great music, The Space, 8 p.m., $10 advance

Headliner Gay Meat, a solo endeavor by Karl Kuehn, frontman of North Carolina’s beloved Museum Mouth, offers a vibrant and intimate reinterpretation of his sound, drawing inspiration from pop, rap, and indie rock in his debut EP, Bed of Every. Support act Kerosene Heights, a Champaign-based rock band, is recognized for their dynamic performances and memorable tunes. Second on the stage is Farkseek, a Chicago punk group, fuses hardcore, metal, and ska elements to create their distinctive sound. Hailing from Urbana are openers Snack’d Out, a slippercore band known for clever lyrics, pop-punk guitar riffs, and incisive social commentary. (DP)

Saturday, May 13th

A photo of different varieties of basil seedlings for sale. They are displayed on a large, white table. The basil is mostly green, but there are some purple varieties.
Champaign-Urbana Herb Society on Facebook

Buy some herbs, Champaign-Urbana Herb Society Plant Sale at Lincoln Square Mall, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. or sold out, $3 each (cash or check only)

It’s time to plant your plants! Fresh herbs are the easiest way to elevate a dish, and they usually aren’t too much work to grow and tend. There will be a whole lot of varieties of herbs available. Pick some up after your trip to Market at the Square. Can’t make this sale? Check this list to see if there are any others happening when you’re available. (JH)

Try wine and sorbet pairings while you listen to music, Yellow & Co, 6:30 to 9 p.m., $25

The Main Scoop and Yellow & Co are getting together to host an amazing night. Make sure to buy your ticket in advance. It will include a musical performance by Sass (of Mank & Sass), three mini-sized sorbet and wine pairings, and a full sized float (you pick your favorite combination of the three and get a full sized version). You must be 21 and older to attend. (LKG)

Musician Kyshona dressed in black and gold holding a guitar with her right hand to her face

Get your spirits lifted by Kyshona Trio and Emily Anne, Channing-Murray Foundation Chapel, 6:30 p.m., $15 advance, $20 door

Kyshona’s musical journey started as a music therapist, where she composed songs alongside her patients, and has since transformed into a strong advocate for the voiceless and overlooked. Merging different genres to inspire and raise consciousness, her performances concentrate on empowerment and optimism, motivating audiences to take action by initially “listening.” Emily Anne from Urbana will kick off the event as the opening act. (DP)

A coffee mug reading "Living it up in the old Shampoo-Banana" sits on the edge of a gray upholstered chair in the author's living room. Photo by Alyssa Buckley.
Alyssa Buckley

Stay the hell home, your place of residence, all day, free

If you’re graduating this May, congratulations to you, but for those of us who aren’t, let’s chill at home. Every restaurant will be packed for graduation weekend, so prepare the day(s) before. Pick up Art Mart’s grab-and-go sandwiches to eat at home or stop by nuEra for cannabis goodies to ensure a very relaxing weekend in. (AB)

Sunday, May 14th

Make a plan for the 75 Mile Trail Challenge, at home, whenever, free

This week, Jenna highlighted various ways to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. The centerpiece of this celebration is a 75 Mile Trail Challenge. No, you don’t have to do it all in one day. That would be silly. You have from May 27th to September 4th to log 75 miles of walking, running, biking, kayaking, canoeing, roller blading, etc. throughout the forest preserves. Take this weekend to make a plan. You can find all of the trail information, and register for the challenge, at the CCFPD website.

a long orange picnic table is outside on a sunny day. The table has wooden platters of various desserts including croissants. Some are dusted with powdered sugar.
Bakelab on Facebook

Take your mom on a bike ride to a bakery, Anita Purves Nature Center, 2 p.m., free but bring money for treats and coffee.

The Anita Purves Nature Center is hosting a Mother’s Day bike ride to celebrate moms and those who nurture us. This ride will start at the nature center and end at Bake Lab for pastries and coffee. The bike ride will be an easy-paced three and a half miles and led by League Certified Cycling Instructors. Helmets and a review of the rules of the road are strongly recommended. (LKG)

Relive the glory days of American Idol, Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts, 6 p.m., $51-61

Remember when American Idol first came out? Man, those were the days. I’ve completely lost track of the show, and who the judges are, and who the contestants are (except of course local-ish finalist Leah Marlene). They are on Season 21! Well here is your opportunity to see season two winner Ruben Studdard and runner-up Clay Aiken sing together. What a nice little friendly rivalry that was. Also I just realized that season was in 2003, so yeah. (JM)

All event information is accurate to the best of our abilities, but sometimes we make mistakes and sometimes event information, times, prices, etc., change after we look them up. Whenever possible, we’ve provided a link to the original event page; you should always double-check the source before you make any firm plans. Thanks for your understanding.

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