Smile Politely

Weekender: July 3-7

Wednesday, July 3rd

Have some frosé, Art Mart, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., $5

Who doesn’t love some frozen rosé? It’s delish, and I suggest you grab a glass to drink while you check out which of the pre-made salads you want to pick up for the weekend. (JH) Photo by Patrick Singer

Go to a “backyard” party, Bentley’s, 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., suggested donation of $5

They had me at “white lie” bar. There will be opportunities to drink that tasty little beverage, along with Half Acre beer specials, enjoy some Chester’s BBQ, and hang out with friends while the DJs are spinnin’ some tunes (h/t Fresh Prince). (JM)

Audiofeed Music FestivalChampaign County Fairgrounds, all weekend, price varies

I can’t believe it is already that time again, but Audiofeed Music Festival returns to Urbana this week/weekend. Early entry starts today, and there is simply a ton to check out as far as bands and activities go. Read Nicole’s preview of the festival, and grab your tickets at the link above. (PS)

Spindependence, Blackbird, 5 p.m.-2 a.m. (Wednesday-Friday), free

One of the cooler events of the summer is taking place at Blackbird, the all-DJ affair, Spindependence. This event has taken a few forms over the years, but has evolved to feature two stages, indoor and out, with many DJs throughout the day and into the night. There’s no cover, so head over and hang for a bit. (PS)

Thursday, July 4th

Enjoy a refreshing Italian soda, Cafe Kopi, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., $4

What can I say? I am really into refreshing beverages right now, and Cafe Kopi’s Italian soda is one of them. Do yourself a favor and get one on this Independence Day. It’ll be a nice little non-boozy treat before you make poor decisions later in the evening or this weekend. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

See some fireworks, locations and times vary, most events are free

It’s that day where we grill food, set off explosives, and wear red, white, and blue stuff. Go do all of those fun things, but remember that independence was not and is still not a reality for all Americans. You can find a list of fireworks locales here. (JM) Top photo by Sam Logan

Friday, July 5th

Get out and hear some live music, locations vary, times vary, free

There are a heckuva lot of opportunities to enjoy some music inside and outside drinking establishments in C-U. Of course Friday Night Live is happening, and while you’re downtown Champaign stick around for more entertainment at Watson’s or Pour Bros. Headed to Urbana? Try Blackbird for their last day of Spindependence or the Rose Bowl’s First Friday lineup. There will be food available at both. (JM)

See the new Elective Reportage show, Analog Wine Bar, 7 p.m., free but bring $ for wine

A few weeks ago, Micah previewed this insightful exhibit of local photography focusing on C-U’s evolving urban landscape. The wait is almost over. Go check out this great new gallery space and have interesting conversations about urbanaization over a glass of good wine. (DD) Photo from Facebook event.

Saturday, July 6th

Join artists Lyd & Ted, Market at the Square, 7 a.m. to 12 p.m., bring $ to shop

Wood block illustrator Lydia Puddicombe and Tedra Ashley-Wannemuehler of Red Ember Forge Jewelry are coming back to the Urbana Farmers’ Market this week. Meet these two amazing women and shop their gorgeous creations. You can have your fireworks. This is how I like my color and fire. (DD) Photo from Facebook event

Pick some Daylilies for your garden, Blooming Idiot Garden, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., prices vary

The Blooming Idiot, a local garden-plant grower, is having its midseason sale of Daylilies at their flower field in Seymour. The flower field looks gorgeous enough just to visit, but who wouldn’t want to bring some of that beauty back home with them? The plants are available in an assortment of colors and varieties. All you have to do it pick your choice and the staff will dig it up for you. Visit the Facebook event for location details. (SP) Photo from The Blooming Idiot Facebook page

Learn how to paddleboard, Kaufman Lake, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., $15-$25

Even though Illinois is land-locked, that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy many of the water sport activities that they do on the coasts. While you may not be able to surf anywhere around here, paddleboarding is probably the next closest thing and it can provide a heck of a workout. Standing Paddle Co. of Decatur will be hosting an event to teach paddleboarding at Kaufman Lake in Champaign on Saturday. With your rental of a paddle board, you will receive a free mini lesson and time to practice on the lake. (SP)

Do some late night swimming, Sholem Aquatic Center, 7 to 9 p.m., $6-9

I grew up across the street from a public pool, where I basically lived during the summer, and on days where the temp climbed about 95 degrees they would stay open until 11 p.m. I thought this was wonderful. There’s just something about swimming under the night sky. While Sholem doesn’t do this, they do offer the occasional late night swim, where they stay open until 9 p.m. rather than closing at 7 p.m. Go take advantage of a little extra swimming time this weekend. (JM)

Sunday, July 7th

Have a breakfast picnic, your favorite brekkie spot and your favorite outdoor space, all weekend, prices vary

After a long weekend (hopefully you didn’t work on Friday), do treat yourself to a nice breakfast outdoors, before the weather is too hot. Stop by Art Mart or Pekara or McDonald’s if that’s your thing, and take your breakfast to your favorite park. I think it’s nice to visit some underrated ones like Davidson Park or Skelton Park, but YDY. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Meet a descendant of Crazy Horse, Champaign Public Library, 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., free

Crazy Horse family elder Floyd Clown Sr. is touring the U.S. with author William Matson, to discuss their book Crazy Horse: The Lakota Warrior’s Life and Legacy. It’s not often you get to here about such an important historical figure from a member of their family. So take some time this all-American weekend, and learn about the history of a man and a tribe that were here first. (JM) Photo from Facebook event page

Get new clothes in an environmentally friendly way, Art Coop, 1 to 4 p.m., free

From now until Saturday, bring those clothes that are in great condition but that you just don’t really wear anymore, and drop them off at the Art Coop. Then, you can head over on Sunday and “shop” for some “new ones. Such a great way to find your new favorite outfit while not being all consumer-y. (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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