Smile Politely

Weekender: July 19-21

Friday, July 19th

Cool off with a Long Island Iced Tea, Alexander’s, all weekend, $10

Alexander’s Long Island Iced Tea is refreshing, for sure. It’s also nice to enjoy it in an air conditioned restaurant as you seek some relief from a long, sweltering week. Go for happy hour and get the burger and one of these drinks, then head home (maybe with a designated driver) and crash from a boozy food coma. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Or, celebrate National Daiquiri Day, At home or your favorite bar, all day, prices vary

With Friday’s high temp expected to be in the mid 90s, I find myself already daydreaming about getting off work and having a cold, cold drink. Perfect for these sweltering days are light and flavorful cocktails, and it just so happens that Friday is National Daiquiri Day. The classic recipe is: Light rum, lime juice, and simple syrup, shaken with ice and strained into a cocktail glass. However, like my margaritas, I prefer daiquiris blended with ice for a slushy-like consistency. Simple and sweet, but most importantly, refreshing. (SP)

OUTSIDE at the Research Park, 1816 South Oak Street, Champaign, 6:30-10:30 p.m., free

This summer’s installment of the annual OUTSIDE at the Research Park performance, curated by Krannert Center, features Alma Afrobeat Ensemble and local outfit Zecca Bom. This family-friendly event will be a hot one, so bring plenty of water and such to keep hydrated out in the heat. (PS) Photo from Krannert Center’s website

Check out some Shakespeare, Ewing Cultural Center in Bloomington, 8 p.m., $35-55

Each summer, the Illinois Shakespeare Festival puts on three performances on the main stage in the lovely setting of Ewing Cultural Center. This evening you can catch As You Like It, one of Shakepeare’s comedies, which I always find a bit easier to digest. The grounds make it easy to bring a picnic to enjoy before the show, but I’m thinking you might want to minimize your outdoors time. The Bloomington restaurant has been slowly improving over the past few years, so there are several good places to dine before your show. Here’s our review of Anju Above, a good one to try. (JM)

Saturday, July 20th

Buy some peaches, Urbana’s Market at the Square, 7 a.m. to noon, $6-$10

Peaches are in season! Get to the market early and ask for peach seconds — they’re the ugly looking ones that are perfect for baking. Make a pie or cobbler, or grill some of those babies. You could even make a cobbler on the grill if you have a cast iron pan. Maybe peach salsa is in your future? (JH) Top photo by Jessica Hammie

Get some ice milk, Jarling’s, noon to 10 p.m., $5/person

This is the perfect weather for a visit to Jarling’s. I love a snowstorm: Banana cream pie is quite tasty, and you can’t go wrong with a peanut butter-chocolate combo. Waffle bowls and cones are always delicious. I suggest avoiding the after dinner hours so you don’t have to wait in a long time. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Cool off with a matinee of Singin’ in the Rain Jr., Virginia Theatre, $14 for adults, $12 for kids

Get out of the heat and into the historic Virginia Theatre for a live performance of Singin’ in the Rain Jr.  Brought to you by the Champaign Park District’s Theatre Program, this production will showcase the bourgeoning talent of our local youth. Just the thought of dancing in the rain should help lower the heat index. (DD) 

Fringe Fest, Bentley’s Pub, 3 p.m.-2 a.m., $5

You can find all the details about Bentley’s Fringe Fest here, which takes place on Saturday, with a ton of local bands, and plenty of food and drink as well. This is a 21+ event, so if you’re of that age, hop on down to Bent’s to enjoy this parking lot party they have lined up. (PS) Photo from Bentley’s Pub’s event page

Treat your ears to the Illinois Summer Piano Institute’s Concert with Sinfonia da Camera, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., tickets range from $5 to $30

Enjoy Sinfonia da Camera’s collab with the School of Music’s Summer Piano Institute with a program including Grieg’s “Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16,” Allegro molto moderato (featuring Yujin Na), Chopin’s “Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor, Op. 21,” Maestoso (featuring Yu-Jung Feng), Corigliano’s “Concerto for Piano and Orchestra,” Allegro (featuring Hana Lim), Dohnányi’s “Variations on a Nursery Theme, Op. 25” (featuring Timothy Ehlen), and Prokofiev’s “Piano Concerto No. 1 in D-flat Major, Op. 10” (featuring Boaz Sharon). (DD) Photo from KCPA Facebook event page

Listen to some music & drink under the moonlight, Alto Vineyards, 7:30 to 10:30 p.m., $5 admission

Alto Vineyards in the west reaches of Champaign is hosting a night of music, food, beer, and wine this Saturday. Relax under the moonlight and enjoy local musician Candy Foster, who will be performing all evening. A food truck will be on-site and all ages are welcome, but naturally you must be 21+ to partake in the beer and wine. Guests are invited to bring their own chairs and blankets, but Alto Vineyards does provide tables and seating. (SP) 

Sunday, July 21st

Take the kids to Dilili in Paris, The Art Theater, 11:30 a.m., free

The Art Theater is once again bringing international children’s films to C-U through their Smart Kids film series. Summer is usually the time for all the animated features in the mainstream theaters; this year Disney has cornered the market with Toy Story 4Aladdin, and The Lion King, but here’s an opportunity to see the films coming out of other countries and cultures, and they are all free. Dilili is a mystery set in Paris that features important cultural figures of the early 20th century, and is recommend for ages 9 and up. You can see the rest of the summer’s lineup here. (JM) Image from Art Theater website

Head out to the Sounds at Sunset Concert Series, Toalson Park, 6 to 8 p.m., free

Outdoor concerts are what summer is all about. So this Sunday evening, bring a blanket and some friends and enjoy live music by the Hot Iron String Band. This summer series rotates locations and performers. Check out the full schedule here. (DD) 


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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