Smile Politely

Weekender: December 5-7

FRIDAY, December 5th

Holiday Dump and Run, University YMCA, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

If you’re looking for cheap, gently used holiday decorations, look no further than the festive version of the Dump and Run—an event put on by the Students for Environmental Concerns. Looks like there will even be some sweet treats for sale as well. (MR)

Lunch: chicken thigh cassoulet, bacaro, 113 N Walnut Street, Champaign, 11a.m. – 2 p.m., $15

A few (several?) weeks ago, we SPlogged about the jamon y buerre sandwich, and a few (several?) weeks ago I had the good fortune to get a bison chili cheese dog as the bacaro Friday lunch special (pictured here). Apparently a lot of other people had it too, and by the time I had a late lunch at 1:45 p.m., my chili cheese dog was served on regular bun (not poppy seed), and instead of house cut fries or chips, the I received “extra chili” on my dog. I’m not really complaining, because it was delicious, and I wouldn’t have had room for fries or chips anyway (but for the record, that was a lot of meat). This Friday’s lunch is chicken thigh cassoulet: “Confit chicken thighs, Smoking Goose garlic pork sausage, Triple S Farms bacon, white beans, onions, carrots, thyme, and oregano – topped with fresh breadcrumbs and duck fat and finished to order until golden. Served with roasted garlic baguette and fancy soda.” That’s a [gently] punch-someone-you-love kind of delicious meal, so get your body to bacaro and eat that cassoulet. (JH)

Funny, Messy, Sad, 7 p.m. and midnight, Armory Free Theatre, 505 E Armory Room 160, Urbana, free

Performance Arts with Deke Weaver is putting on a performance of epic proportions. Comprised of performances developed throughout the semester, Funny, Messy, Sad will have a limited run of two shows: one at 7 p.m. and the other at midnight. Each show will run 90 minutes. Funny, Messy, Sad will take you on a ride through musical theatre, church, foodie mysticism, workout routines, performative sculpture, and more. You can expect fireworks inside, full frontal nudity, misinformation, dances with seven veils, secrets and lies, and a guest appearance by Edward Snowden. Also, choreographed hamster dancing, live popcorn popping, wish fulfillment, and the meaning of life illuminated. (RP)

Babes in Toyland, Rantoul Theatre Group, 7:30 p.m., $10

A play by Rebecca Ryland, directed by Garth Gersten, running Dec 5–21, 2014. From the RTG website: “The villainous Barnaby has fallen in love with sweet Mistress Mary Quite Contrary. If he can’t buy her love, then he’ll force her to marry him by threatening to foreclose on her mother, the poor Widow Piper. Mary already has her heart set on marrying Barnaby’s nephew Alan — but not if Barnaby can help it! He hires two bumbling ruffians to do away with Alan, but Alan returns to Mother Goose Land amidst much rejoicing. Mary journeys to the mysterious Toyland through the dangerous Spider Forest. But wait! Barnaby hasn’t given up, and he herds the whole gang of Mother Goose Land characters to Toyland in pursuit of Mary.” (MG)

Wintertime, The Station Theatre, 8 p.m., $15

From the Station website: “In this loopy operatic farce, the surreal collides with sex and the profound smashes up against slapstick. During a late December snowfall, Jonathan and Ariel, a young couple in love, arrive at Jonathan’s family summer house for a romantic getaway. Ready to propose marriage, Jonathan is interrupted by his mother Maria and her lover Francois, who have also decided to use the house for the weekend. This unexpected turn of events is followed by the arrival of Jonathan’s father Frank and his father’s lover Edmund who have also shown up for a romantic weekend. As pleasantries snowball out of control, Bertha, an elderly woman, bursts in and explains that her lover Hilda has fallen through a hole in the ice and is drowning. As the group frantically runs around gathering rescue equipment, Hilda enters alive and soaking wet. It does not take long for suspicions and jealousies to resurface, and soon all of the lovers demonstrate their frustration in a performance that is both operatic and farcical.” You hear that? An operatic farce that is both operatic and farcical. Right on right on. (MG)



The Soil & The Sun, Tara Terra, Mike ‘N Molly’s, 10 p.m., $10

The Pygmalion Festival’s Show Series carries on into December, where this weekend’s show will feature a band that performed at this year’s installment of the festival back in September. The Soil & The Sun hail from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and released a new record this year called Meridian, which is quite good and worth your time to check out. Local openers Tara Terra fit quite well here, and will open the show in support of their new record, Daughter, released earlier this year. (PS)

SATURDAY, December 6th

Midwestern Friendlies MFA Reading, 4 p.m., Cafeteria & Co., free

Stop by Cafeteria & Co. on Saturday afternoon for readings by creative writers from two MFA programs: our own U of I and Indiana University. Poetry and fiction will both be on offer. Check the event Facebook page for the full lineup. (RP)

Downwrite Showcase, Mike N Molly’s, 6 p.m., $10

Downwrite is a website musicians can use as a platform to have fans commission personalized songs for them. A showcase of these songs should be at the worst an interesting look at what custom crafted songs by familiar musicians sound like. Bob Nanna (Braid) and Mark Rose (Spitalfield) founded the site and are both performing at the showcase, with Jon Walker (Panic! at the Disco), and Warren Franklin with local Ryan McCoy (Midstress) opening. (MR)


SUNDAY, December 7th

Chocolate-banana milkshake, Courier Cafe, 111 N Race St, Urbana, 7 a.m.-11 p.m., $3.75ish

Must I really explain this? Life is hard. Sometimes we deserve to treat ourselves. Milk is good for you, as long as you’re not lactose intolerant. Milkshakes are treats. Treat yourself to a milkshake. Not a fan of chocolate banana? That’s OK. There are plenty more options. (JH)




Prepare for winter, your house, a few hours

Here are some of the highlights from the Illinois winter weather preparedness guide that can be found here. Have a family emergency supply kit, winterize your home, be careful of freezing pipes, prepare for isolation, prepare your vehicle, create a emergency kit for traveling, and dress appropriately. The guide linked above has some helpful, easy to read literature on all of these topics. (SL)



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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