Smile Politely

Weekender: May 3-5

Friday, May 3rd

Shop Owner Appreciation Days, Common Ground Co-op, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., prices vary

Owner Appreciation Days are back at the Co-op. If you’re an owner you get 10% off one day during owner days. Ludwig Farmstead Creamery will be in the store from 11:15 to 1:15 p.m. with lots of cheese samples, and sushi rolls are only $5 from 4 to 6 p.m. There are additional specials on Saturday and Sunday, so check on Facebook for those. (JH)


Go to the first ever Immersion Festival, IMC, 5 p.m., donations (strongly encouraged)

We interviewed the creative mind behind this festival last week, and this week it’s finally time to check out the results of the collective effort behind Immersion Festival 2019. The schedule of events is up, and includes musical performances and interactive workshops, in addition to visual arts, installations, and video art, all by local artists. Check the facebook event page for a list of contributers, and exact times of performances and presentations. Immersion Festival will span Friday and Saturday, so there’s still time to check it out if you can’t make it tonight. (NL) Photo from Facebook

Observe the dynamics of Art and Physics together, Analog Wine Bar, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., free

Illinois students in “Where the Arts meet Physics” PHYS 498 will be exhibiting works of art focused on the ancient connection between human artwork and the universe in which we live. Teams composed of student artist and physics students worked together to create various media including:

Black holes and gravitational waves in Japanese print

“Electron’s Adventures” laser show

The universe cooked in 6 courses


The event is open to all ages and you can check out more information on Facebook. (SP) 

Stand with the Newsies at the Urbana High School’s production of the Tony-winning musical, Cobb Auditorium, UHS, 7 p.m.,  $10 for adults, $5 for students,

Experience the power of the Alan Menken’s music as you go back to the 1899 New York City Newsboys strike. Power to the People and to the cast and crew of this production. Evening performances Friday and Saturday, with a Sunday matinee at 2:30 p.m. (DD) 

See some swans, Virginia Theatre, 7 p.m. $12-24

CU Ballet brings Swan Lake to the Virginia stage every four years, and it is a beautiful and tragic story that is not to be missed. The caliber of dancing is such that you forget that you are watching primarily middle and high school students. Can’t make it Friday? There’s another showing Saturday at 4 p.m. Find tickets for both here, and be sure to check out our preview. (JM) Photo by Darrell Hoemann

Saturday, May 4th

Shop the first market of the season, Urbana’s Market at the Square (corner of Illinois and Vine), 7 a.m. to noon, prices vary

Outdoor market season is here! It’s been a wet spring, so there likely won’t be a whole heck of a lot of stuff you might be used to seeing this time of year. But most of the produce vendors have some sort of greenhouse and will likely have leafy greens and maybe some asparagus. There is always breakfast/brunch/lunch available at the food trucks. Grab your reusable shoppings bags, but leave your dogs at home. (JH) Top Photo by Jessica Hammie

Buy some plants, Common Ground Co-op, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., prices vary

Yep, the Co-op made the list twice this weekend. If you’re at the Market, you may as well slip on over to the Plant Sale at Common Ground. This is an annual fundraiser for their Food for All program, and is a great way to stock up on some seedlings for your garden that you know are coming from local growers. Looking for flowers? Allerton and Kappa Kappa Gamma are having fundraising sales as well, benefitting Allerton programming and Cunningham Children’s Home, respectively. Maybe someday it will stop raining long enough to get them in the ground! (JM)

Visit the last day of the 51st Annual Juried Student Art and Design Exhibition, Parkland College Giertz Gallery, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., free

This Parkland is always surprising in its range of mediums, subject, and style — much like the Parkland Art & Design students themselves. A few minutes walking through the exhibition will show you the quality of the program, faculty, and students. Giertz Gallery is a great place to spend an hour of your weekend. You’ll find beauty, inspiration, and free parking. (DD) Photo from Facebook 

Embrace the Dark Side, Pour Bros. Taproom, 12 p.m. to 12 a.m., prices vary

It’s May the 4th, and even if you aren’t a Star Wars geek, er, fan, you surely know that this has become day of celebration of all things Star Wars. In honor of the “holiday”, Pour Bros. is hosting a tap takeover with Founders Brewing Company, as well as a pinball exhibition with an actual pinball wizard who will be taking on willing challengers at the Star Wars pinball machine. At some point during the event, someone will pour the one millionth ounce, which is kind of a cool milestone. (JM)


Head out to Perimeter Road Music Festival, Perimeter Road Sound Recordings, 1 p.m. to 6:30 pm.

Here’s another first-time music festival to top off your week. The Perimeter Road Music Festival is going to feature several local bands, food trucks, and Parkland College clubs. The festival is happening in conjunction with the Parkland Car Show, which is turning 21 this year. Check out the facebook page for a full lineup of performers. (NL) Photo from facebook

Meet the 2019 Illinois Art + Design BFA candidates at the opening reception of their 2019 exhbition, Krannert Art Museum, 5 to 7 p.m., free

This exhibition will include studio art, graphic design, and industrial design work. Explore the range of techniques and subject matters and celebrate these young artists and the programs that fostered their development. This exhibit will run through May 12th. (DD) 

Hit the runway for the Refashioned Fashion Show, Temple Honye Buell Hall, 7 p.m., free

Project Runway fans will enjoy having their own live version of the recycled materials challenge right here in Chambana. Kudos to the Illinois School of Art + Design for highlighting this approach in the classroom and on the runway. This event is rich in creativity and inspiration for eco-conscious design. Recycle, repurpose and look fabulous. Get ready for the event by reading our preview. (DD) Photo from Facebook

Sunday, May 5th

Learn some history, Champaign Public Library or Urbana Free Library, all weekend, free

Sunday is the 5th of May. Here in the US, many gringos celebrate Cinco de Mayo erroneously thinking that it’s Mexican Independence Day. It’s not. Mexican Independence Day is September 16th. The 5th of May marks the commemoration of the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over French forces in the city of Puebla. Before you start doing shots of tequila and donning sombreros, think about what you are celebrating and why. Think, too, of the ways in which our American society and our American politics are affecting people from Mexico, here and in the United States. Please do not participate in terrible cultural appropriation or cultural stereotyping. Visit the library for some books on Mexican history, the history of Mexicans in the US, and the ways in which this administration and its policies are literally threatening the lives of brown people. Ask the librarians for help sourcing some books — our libraries are fantastic and our librarians are happy to help. Please also consider doing this research on your own, because it is not the job of the historically marginalized to educate the historically privileged and powerful. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Try a brand new escape room, C-U Adventures in Time and Space, times vary, $20-25

C-U Adventures just opened their latest game, Calling All Villains and I’m super psyched about it. I took my 12 year old and his friends to do the now retired Calling All Heroes at the old location, and it was fun and challenging. I love the spin on this sequel, and can’t wait to try it out. (JM)

Show off your dog, drink some beer, and raise money, Colbert Park, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., $25 registration fee per dog

It’s hard to beat hanging with your pooch and drinking some beer, but this weekend, you can also do some good while kicking back. In partnership with Triptych Brewing, the Champaign County Humane Society will be hosting the annual “Mutt Strut” fundraiser this Sunday at Colbert Park in Savoy. The event will include a dog walk, contests, food trucks, and, as always with Triptych, good beer. The coolest part is that the brewery will create a craft beer for the top fundraisers’ dog, featuring your mutt’s mug on the label. Proceeds go directly to the Humane Society and registration with an itinerary is available on the fundraising page. Non-dog owners welcome! (SP) Photo by Sam Logan

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Head to the Iron Post for some jazz, 5 p.m., cover

To round out the Iron Post’s jazz weekend, Chip Stephens Organ Trio is playing Sunday. This group is one of those understated C-U gems. Stephens is a professor of jazz piano at the U of I, and has played on Grammy and Emmy award-winning records. You can take a listen to him here or here, and then head out to see him play the intimate venue in downtown Urbana. (NL) Photo from Facebook


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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