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September 21, 2012

A Byrd’s Eye View N











The Odd Life of Timothy Green Isn’t That Odd By Art Byrd

A quote by

After weeks of going to shoot ’em up movies, I was in the mood for a nice tug-at-the-heart movie. The Odd Life of Timothy Green fit the bill. First, it’s a Disney movie, second, it felt like a fairytale, and third, the story is quirky enough for it to work. The storyline is about a couple, Jim and Cindy Green, played by Joel Edgerton (Warrior) and Jennifer Garner (Juno), who lived in a small town and want to have a child. After a doctor’s visit, they find out that they cannot have a baby. One night, the couple tries to find comfort in their situation by writing down all the things their child would have been, such as “honest to a fault,” “Picasso with a pencil” and “to love and be loved.” They put all the paper descriptions in a box and bury it in Cindy's garden. The town has been suffering a drought but that night, it rains. Jim and Cindy are awakened by the storm. They start to find dirt around the house. The couple looks throughout the house and then finally looks into the would-be nursery and find a dirty, 10-year-old boy named Timothy (played by CJ Adams), one of the names Jim and Cindy considered for their child. Here's where the movie turns totally Disney. We are asked, as an audience, to believe that a ready-made boy appears from the garden. At first, Jim and Cindy are shocked, then comfortable with the idea, especially when Timothy calls both of them, “Mom” and “Dad.” They know Timothy is different as leaves have grown from his legs.

“I've known for a long time that your looks will only take you so far, and I think I'm in the process of showing what I can do as an actress. I wouldn't mind if someone says I'm a good actress who's also kind of nice to look at. There's a lot worse things people can say about you. “ Actress, Jennifer Garner, who is starring in The Odd Life of Timothy Green, in theaters now.

September 21, 2012

What makes this film movie worth watching is everything ties together. The main industry of the town is a pencil factory, which is about to close unless something is done. Jim has an issue with his father, Big Jim, played by David Morse (St. Elsewhere) for leaving Jim’s games when he wasn’t doing well. Cindy has an 'ongoing' sibling rival with her sister Brenda, played by Rosemarie DeWitt, who has kids and is constantly putting her down. You feel that Timothy has arrived mysteriously to save the town and his new parents. The heart of the movie is Timothy. Every time he appears on screen you want to smile. Timothy gives Jim and Cindy the idea of a leaf pencil instead of using the trees to make wooden ones. There is a great scene between Timothy and his new Uncle Bub, played by M. Emmett Walsh, on his hospital bed as they talk and laugh. Aunt Mel, Uncle Bub’s wife, says she hasn’t heard him laugh like that in years. Another scene is with Mrs. Crudstaff, played by Dianne Wiest, the mean museum owner and Cindy’s boss. Timothy draws a portrait of her that includes the hair on her chin. Very charming scene. The Odd Life of Timothy Green has great moments. I like the friendship between Timothy and young Jodi, play by Odeya Rush. Jodi comes off very tough but she has an interesting side --which Timothy discovers. It was great seeing two young people have a genuine like for each other. As for most fairytales, there must be an ending. The Odd Life of Timothy Green has a touching ending as Timothy realizes that he is done and has to leave. There are many “wipe a tear” moments in the movie, but that is what The Odd Life of Timothy Green is all about -- to let us feel our raw emotions about love, gain, loss and hope. This is a rare movie for the whole family. Get your hankies out. Here is the trailer for The Odd Life of Timothy Green

Swing Dance Night at Cedar’s Every Thursday for 11 years, Youngstown has hosted “Swing Night” at Cedar’s. Dancers from as far as Erie, Pittsburgh, Grove City, and some Cleveland dancers as well, descend into Y-Town for some jitterbug, lindy hop, Charleston, and blues. The music starts at 10 p.m. ends at 2 a.m. There’s no cover to attend, but you must be 18 years or older.  Cedar’s is located at 23 N. Hazel St., downtown Youngstown. Here is a small look at the swing dancing at Cedar’s:

September 21, 2012

Good Times Roll at Donna’s Diner By Monnie Ryan To read the full version of this review, visit

If you’re my age, you probably remember sitting at a soda fountain sipping a just-mixed chocolate malt and listening to tunes on a jukebox that played 45 RPM records, it makes sense that diners remind me of a time when things seemed, well, less plugged in. Instead of pushing keys to send a text message, our fingers were drawing patterns in the “frost” on the outside of the aluminum containers in which our malts were mixed. That’s the kind of atmosphere you’ll find at Donna’s Diner in downtown Sharon, Pa. Not long ago, my husband Jack and I rounded up our foodaholic friends Jerry and Barb and headed over for lunch. The first thing we noticed is the size; Donna’s seems wider and longer than most we've been in. That said, the interior has the requisite old-time decorations on the walls, a black-andwhite diamond pattern floor and chrome soda fountain stools with red seats. The menu here is extensive and takes a while to digest. But following my usual custom at diners, I ordered a chocolate milkshake ($4.99). Then, ever the fish lover, I decided on one of the Blue Plate Specials, the Sea Cruise (a half order of Yuengling battered haddock for $6.99) with Baby Twist (macaroni and cheese) and cottage cheese as my sides. I couldn't resist adding an order of Roman Holiday, or sweet potato puffs with brown sugar dipping sauce ($2.99). As you may have guessed, most of the foods here have names straight from the '50s, like the Rockin' Rueben, The Platters (roast beef) and Hopelessly Devoted (pancakes). Jack also went with the Charlie Tuna, a tuna melt sandwich with American cheese, lettuce and tomato and cole slaw as his side ($5.99). Barb settled on The Audrey, a turkey reuben with the usual fixings on marbled rye ($6.99). For sides, she picked grilled veggies and Coolsville Chips, which are homemade potato chips sprinkled with parmesan cheese. Jerry started with Thunderbird, or chili topped with shredded cheddar, diced onion and a dollop of sour cream with tortilla chips on the side ($2.99) for a cup. His sandwich choice was the Sinatra, hot roast beef with provolone, grilled onions and horseradish sauce on grilled white bread served au jus ($7.99). My milkshake was wonderful - on the thick side and topped with whipped cream and a cherry. It was so chocolaty and creamy it could have been a meal all by itself. The sweet potato puffs were outstanding -slightly crispy on the outside, soft inside and cut in cubes. Served with a sugary dipping sauce, they were worth the trip. Because I love to eat breakfast just about any time I should note that breakfast foods are served all day at Donna's. If you go: Donna's Diner, 10 W. State St., Sharon, PA 16146; (724) 346-7373; Open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.

September 21, 2012

What’s Happening Around The Valley: Sept. 21st – Oct. 11th Ongoing Northside Farmers Market First Unitarian Universalist Church, 1105 Elm St., Youngstown; 330-518-6971. Every Saturday through the fall from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. This organization also offers a downtown farmers market every Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Central Square. Both feature fresh local produce, baked goods and small vendors. Accepts WIC and EBT. Free. Irish Music Irish music enthusiasts from the area get together every third Sunday of the month to play. Open to the public. 6-8 p.m. Free. Quinlan’s Irish Pub, 5154 Youngstown-Warren Rd., Niles; for more information call 330-757-9057 or 330-349-4500. Lowellville Cruisin’ the River Car Show This car show occurs every Monday tonight through mid-October in downtown Lowellville. Features classic cars, hot rods, street rods, motorcycle and choppers. Registration is optional at $2 per vehicle. 6-9 p.m. Free. For more information, call 330-536-6811.

Friday, September 21st Concert by The Buckinghams Stambaugh Auditorium, 1000 Fifth Ave., Youngstown, at 7 p.m. The Opening Act will feature vocalist Chookie Alberini. The Buckinghams will perform classics from the 1960s and 1970s, including Hey, Baby, They're Playing Our Song; Mercy, Mercy; and Kind of a Drag. For tickets or more information, call 330-259-0555.  

Saturday, September 22nd Arab American Festival of Youngstown Along West Federal Street., downtown Youngstown; contacts: Amer Adi, 330-509-0791 or Jacob Harver, 330-301-0282. This festival –  in its inaugural year – celebrates the heritage of Youngstown’s ArabAmerican community. It features live music, dance, food, drink and games. Internationally acclaimed artist Tony Eid, and traditional dance group Dabke, will perform. In addition, there will be vendors selling traditional Arab foods, a bazaar with goods and games, and activities for children. Call for more information. 10 a.m.-1 a.m. Free. Trash to Treasure The second annual “Trash to Treasure” at Cedars gets underway at 8 p.m. The entire bar will be filled with vendors selling various items such as vinyl albums to vintage clothing. There will be bands playing starting at 11 p.m including The Sleeps, from Cleveland, and the Pomegranates, from Cincinnati. Cedars Lounge is located at 23 N. Hazel Street, downtown Youngstown.

September 21, 2012

What’s Happening Around The Valley: Sept. 21st – Oct. 11th (cont’d) Saturday, September 22nd The Farmer and the Chef Mill Creek MetroParks will present the event at 6:30 p.m. at the MetroParks Farm, 7574 ColumbianaCanfield Rd., across from the Canfield Fairgrounds. The Farmer and the Chef will feature a local farmer paired with a noted local chef and together they will create tastings from fresh, locally grown produce, meat and other products. This event will also include beer crafting and live musical entertainment by Donkey Engine. For reservations and more information, call 330-702-3000. Meet Rosita from Sesame Street! Public Library, Main Library, 305 Wick Ave., Youngstown; 330-744-8636- Kids: Meet Rosita! Parents: Take your child’s photo with this beloved Sesame Street character when she visits Main Library as part of the Hispanic Heritage Celebration. The Library is partnering with Western Reserve Public Media, YSU’s Hispanic Heritage Celebration Planning Committee and Office of Equal Opportunity & Diversity. Crafts for the kids. Refreshments will be served. 1 p.m. Free.

Sunday, September 23rd Photographic exhibit Mike McCartney: North Highlands  The Butler Institute of American Art, 524 Wick Ave., Youngstown. presents the event running from Sunday, September 23rd through Sunday, December 30th in the Novak Gallery. North Highlands has been seen throughout the United Kingdom and now begins its North American tour. For museum hours and more information, call 330-743-1107. Bruce Neswick in a Free Concert As part of its Organ Concert Series, Stambaugh Auditorium, 1000 Fifth Ave., Youngstown, will present the event at 4 p.m. Mr. Neswick is an Associate Professor of Organ and Sacred Music at Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, and will perform on the E. M. Skinner Pipe Organ, built specifically for Stambaugh Auditorium. For more information, call 330-259-0555. 10th Year anniversary of the Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival WYSU is proud to be a Media Sponsor as it presents the documentary Follow Me - The Yoni Netanyahu Story at 7 p.m. Temple El Emeth, 3970 Logan Way, Youngstown. Follow Me tells the story of the high-risk mission to save Israeli hostages held by Arab terrorists at a Ugandan airport and how it was hailed as a miraculous success, but not without casualties. For tickets or more information, call 330-746-3250. Concert by the Dana Chamber Orchestra The Dana School of Music will present the event at 4 p.m. in the Ford Family Recital Hall in the DeYor Performing Arts Center (260 West Federal Street) in Youngstown. This concert will include music from Felix Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream and Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 in E-flat Major. For tickets or more information, call 330-744-0264. A Bus Tour of Possibilities The McDonough Museum of Art and Dreaming Youngstown will present the event from 3:30 until 5 p.m. beginning in front of the former State Theater in downtown Youngstown. This Bus Tour is in conjunction with the Living As Form - The Nomadic Version Exhibit running through Friday, November 9th at various collaborating host venues throughout Mahoning and Trumbull Counties. Reservations available at

September 21, 2012

What’s Happening Around The Valley: Sept. 21st – Oct. 11th (cont’d) Monday, September 24th Annual: Burgers, Beer, Bocce for Books, Cassese’s MVR Restaurant, 410 N. Walnut St. Youngstown. This popular fund-raising event is back . Admission includes a beer and a burger, plus games, bocce, local celebrities and an auction. For information or tickets, contact the Library’s Development office at 330-740-6086. The event, which benefits the Library, will be held at the MVR. 5:30 p.m. $15.

Thursday, Oct. 11th New York Times Bestselling Author Carol Higgins Clark at the Main Library The Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County’s 9th Literary Society Author Event, beginning at 6 p.m. Tickets to this fundraising event are $55 and include a copy of the author’s newest release, “Gypped,” another in the mystery series featuring Regan Reilly. The evening will begin with an author’s reception and cocktails from 6-7 p.m., followed by dinner. The author’s presentation will begin just after 8 p.m. and immediately after, Ms. Clark will be available to sign books. Music by John Reese Project. For information or to reserve a spot, contact the Library’s Development Office at 330-740-6086. Carol Higgins Clark has written fourteen previous Regan Reilly mysteries. She is also co-author, with her mother, Mary Higgins Clark, of a bestselling holiday suspense series. Carol’s first mystery, Decked, was published in 1992 and was nominated for both the Anthony and the Agatha Awards. (From the author’s website:

Live Bodybuilding Competition Happening in Austintown The Youngstown Cardinal Classic pumps some muscle this Saturday, Sept. 22. The bodybuilding competition with take place at Austintown Fitch High School on Falcon Drive off Raccoon Road. This is a live show, with judging and awards during the same time, runs from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Categories are Pro Qualifier class for Wheelchair (3 or more contestants), Teen, Novice Figure, Novice Bodybuilding (men and women). Pro cards will be offered to men’s and women’s Open and Masters Bodybuilding Classes. Tickets are $30 for adults; children’s ticket prices have not been announced.

September 21, 2012

On Stage The Victorian Players: The Odd Couple Starring Len Rome and Jim Loboy of WYTV's "Daybreak"; Running from Sept. 7-23. This 1965 play by Neil Simon (which later became a film and a TV series) is a comedy in which two newspaper friends become roommates when one separates from his wife. Felix Ungar, the tidy "guest," introduces his "host," Oscar Madison, to the concepts of housekeeping, personal hygiene, and orderly living conditions. Adult tickets: $10, Seniors/Students: $8. For reservations and information, call 330-746-5455. Friday and Saturday performances are at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. The Victorian Players Theater is located at 702 Mahoning Ave, Youngstown.

The Youngstown Playhouse: Cabaret! The playhouse’s 88th season opener is directed by Frank Lucas. This classic musical follows the story of Sally Bowles, an aspiring singer at Berlin’s notorious Kit Kat Klub in Nazi Germany. After meeting aspiring writer Cliff Bradshaw, who has traveled to Berlin in search of inspiration, Sally moves in with him at a boarding house run by Fräulein Schneider and her suitor, Herr Schultz, a Jewish fruit-shop owner. As the Nazis grow stronger, everything is thrown into disarray. Performances: September 21, 22, 23. Friday and Saturday performances begin at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday matinees begin at 2:30 p.m. To place your reservation, call 330-788-8739. The Playhouse is located at 600 Playhouse Lane, Youngstown.

Salem Community Theare: The Last Five Years A touching two-person show that follows a man and a woman through the arc of their failed five-year relationship. The show uniquely tells Cathy’s story in reverse chronological order (beginning the show at the end of the marriage), and Jamie’s is told in chronological order (starting just after the couple have first met). The show runs September 14-23, Friday and Saturday performances at 8 p.m. Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Ticket prices are $14 for adults, $10 for senior adults (age 62 & up), and $8 for students 17 & under. For tickets or more information, visit

Trumbull New Theatre: The Nerd Aspiring architect Willum Cubbert owes a debt to Rick Steadman, a fellow ex-GI who saved his life after he was wounded in Vietnam. When Rick unexpectedly shows up at Willum’s apartment, however, it becomes apparent that Rick is a hopeless nerd. The production which goes this weekend Sept 21-23 . Tickets are $12 (adults), $10 (students). For ticket information call 330-652-1103.Trumbull New Theatre is located at 5883 Youngstown-Warren Road, Niles.

The Oakland Center for the Arts: The Normal Heart The Normal Heart tells of a city in denial, while a tight-knit group of friends refuses to let doctors, politicians and the press bury the truth of an unspoken epidemic behind a wall of silence. The production will run weekends starting Friday, September 21st through Saturday, October 6th. Evening performances are at 8 p.m. For tickets or more information, call 330-746-0404

September 21, 2012

On Stage (cont’d) Stage Left Players: I DO! I DO! The musical comedy shows the 50-year love story of Agnes and Michael Snow. The show runs Sept. 22-30. Saturday performances are at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., while Sunday matinees begin at 2 p.m. Stage Left Players is located at 234 E. Lincoln Way, Lisbon. For tickets call 330-424-5093.

34west Theater Company- Overboard! The award-winning 34west Theater Company brings to the stage “Overboard.” A hapless television executive on the run is mistaken for a legendary sea captain by a group of Irish fishermen. Watch as two brilliant actors play dozens of roles in this fast-paced comedy thriller. A daring adaptation of the book of Jonah. The dinner theater play will run this Friday, September 21 at 12 noon and 7 p.m. The dinner theater will take place at the Das Dutch Village Inn at 150 E. State Route 14, Columbiana, Ohio. For more information call 866-482-5050, ext 310 or visit

UPCOMING Youngstown Playhouse: The Women of Lockerbie Inspired by a true story and written in the structure of a Greek tragedy, “The Women of Lockerbie” is a drama about a group of women who want to convert an act of hatred into an act of love. The show runs Sept. 28-Oct. 6. $17 (adults), $14 (seniors and students), $10 (children). Youngstown Playhouse is located at 600 Playhouse Lane, Youngstown. For ticket info call 330-788-8739.

James E. Winner Jr. Arts & Culture Center: Instant Shenanigans Improv If you are familiar with "Whose Line Is It Anyway" you'll love the stylings of Instant Shenanigans. Audience participation is always voluntary, and always encouraged! Thursday, September 27th 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $10/members & $15/non-member. Call for tickets reservations at 724-983-8222. The James E. Winner Jr. Arts & Culture Center is located at 98 East State Street, Sharon, PA

Youngstown State University: The Cherry Orchard Youngstown State University Theater will present Anton Chekov's The Cherry Orchard, running weekends from Thursday, October 4th through Sunday, October 14th in the Spotlight Theater in Bliss Hall. Evening performances are at 7:30 P.M. and the Sunday matinees are at 3 p.m. The Cherry Orchard concerns an aristocratic Russian woman and her family as they return to the family estate, which includes a large and well-known cherry orchard just before it is auctioned to pay the mortgage. For tickets or more information, call 330-941-3105.

Boardman Rotary Oktoberfest Celebrates 36th Year This is the 36th year of the Boardman Rotary Oktoberfest, which promises the aroma of great food, scheduled entertainment and crafts of every size and description. This one-day event will be held in Boardman Park from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., with parking available in the west end of the Park (accessible from Southern Boulevard). Admission is $3. Call 330-757-8470 for more information or visit:

September 21, 2012

PRIVACY POLICY Some of you on A Byrd’s Eye View newsletter mailing list came to us from other e-mails sent to us regarding stories about Arts events in the area. We thought you would be interested in reading about additional Arts-related information of interest in the Mahoning and Shenango valleys, and added you. However, if you no longer wish to receive the newsletter, simply send a blank e-mail to with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

The e-mail addresses we have are NEVER shared in any way with anyone, nor are they sold. All copies of the newsletter are sent as blind carbon copies, so that no one receiving the newsletter knows the addresses of anyone else receiving it. If you have received this free newsletter as a forward and would like to subscribe, please send a blank e-mail with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line to

Excerpts from A Byrd’s Eye View can be read in The Review, Newspaper, available throughout the Valley and online at

Michele, Thank you for your input and an amazing editing of A Byrdʼs Eye View. I am going to miss you so much. Love you, art b

Art Byrd Jr. has won awards as a filmmaker and journalist. After working many years as a videographer and director for WFMJ TV News, he retired from broadcasting to share his experience and insight with students as an instructor at Youngstown State University. Art has written and produced numerous Indie films, which have been shown at prestigious film festivals. In addition to teaching and writing/ producing A Byrd’s Eye View newsletter, Art also does freelance media work. He is based in Youngstown, Ohio. Michele Ristich Gatts began her full-time career in journalism with WKBN TV News, where she worked closely with radio news as well. After a decade in broadcasting, she branched into print, working five years for The Business Journal in various reporting and editorial capacities. Michele was fortunate to be recognized with a few prestigious journalism awards along the way, and has done a little teaching for YSU. She currently works as a freelance writer, editor and media consultant, and is based in Youngstown, Ohio. Contact her at Monnie Ryan retired in 2003 after 14 years as managing editor of The Business Journal in Youngstown, where she continues to contribute to the print and online editions. Articles she has written have appeared in more than 20 national publications and at several travelrelated Web sites, and she has won numerous awards for photography. Contact her at

A Byrd's Eye View-September 21, 2012  

A newsletter featuring movies, events happening around the Mahoning Valley and beyond.

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