25 / pub 26 / FREE / DEc. 30, 2009 - Jan. 5, 2010
We Have Liftoff! Benji Hughes talks UFOs, the ladies and his return to Wilmington on New Yearâ€™s Eve
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
What’s inside this week
PAGE 16: BENJI HUGHES INTERVIEW Any Wilmingtonian who happened to miss one of Benji Hughes’ many shows in town over the past year has been remiss of fantastic live music and showmanship that will enlighten any audience. Don’t let it happen again; it’s the last chance of the year to catch Hughes and his immaculate band, playing Soapbox on New Year’s Eve. We can’t think of a better way to ring in 2010 than with Hughes crooning, “White tee shirt / white tee shirt / white tee shirt / on a real sweet girl...” Join the fun, and may the new year be prosperous and healthy for you and yours.
Want to see the best in music at Myrtle Beach’s House of Blues? Or UNCW’s Kenan Auditorium? Visit, www.encorepub. com, to enter one of our many concert contests, and try for a chance to score tickets to area shows! Currently online: Shows to House of Blues in Myrtle Beach and Soapbox Laundro Lounge, downtown Wilmignton.
OK, so, most readers will notice the current paper is a step off encore’s normal beaten path. What folks won’t find: Our normal art, film, news and what-have-you coverage. As always, we dedicate our last/ first edition of the year to our annual Comics and Creative Writing Contest entries, which we received from August to October of 2009. We like to take a break from the norm during this time of year to showcase the creative talent our lovely abode houses.
toons & creative writings .......4-8 4-15 winners of our annual contest: We received over 50 creative-writing entries and cartoons during our 2009 annual contest, wherein the winner in each category works for encore for a year with pay. In our last edition of
the 2009 year, we present the winners of each, as well as numerous other entries that seemingly impressed us most. We extend much thanks to all participants for stretching their creative muscles and showing us the best of their imaginations. And to those who wish to partake
Flip through and enjoy the stories and illustrations of our local citizens. In 2010, we’ll be featuring “An Involuntary Intimate” every other week, written by Claude Limoges, as well as the cartoon More on TV, by Jay Schiller and Greg Cravens, which will run every week in the calendar section of encore. Stay tuned and keep reading!
“Yesterday, President Obama prank-called a Washington radio station, calling himself ‘Barry from D.C.’ Then, just to mess with him, Obama called Glenn Beck’s radio show as ‘B. Hussein from Kenya.’”—Conan O’Brien “Traffic is bad, the holiday with the gridlock. It’s like Dick Cheney, all major arteries are clogged.”—David Letterman “Well, it’s been a long time coming . . . But tomorrow morning at 8am is the Senate’s big healthcare vote. Which means starting at
5am, me and my buddies will be tailgating in the Senate parking lot.”—Jimmy Fallon “It looks like Democrats have their 60 votes for healthcare. Harry Reid said the bill will save us hundreds of millions of dollars. Well, it would have, except for the hundreds of millions of dollars we had to pay to buy the 60 votes.”—Jay Leno
Go ahead: Cull the armies, schlepp the campaign signs around town, pass on the message: VOTE BEST-OF 2010! How? Quite simply, go online to encorepub.com, click on the “vote now” talk bubble, register your e-mail address (one ballot per e-mail allowed only) and choose the best services, places, businesses and people of our local community. It’s the best readers’ poll in town, garnering 1,000s of votes annually so we can recognize who does what the most brilliantly in town. Voting ends on January 19th, so three weeks are left to cast a ballot—make it count!
bid adieu! EDITORIAL: Editor-in-ChiEf: Shea Carver AssistAnt Editor: Emily Rea
pRODucTIOn AnD ADvERTIsIng:
ChiEf Contributors: Adrian Varnam, Nicki Leone, Anghus Houvouras, Carolyna Shelton, Rosa Bianca, MJ Pendleton, Ashley Cunningham, Robert Blanton, Lauren Hodges, Tiffanie Gabrielse, Tom Tomorrow, Chuck Shepherd
John Hitt: Downtown, Carolina Beach
Art dirECtor Sue Cothran AdvErtising sAlEs: Kris Beasley: Wrightsville Beach, N. Wilmington Shea Carver: Midtown, Monkey Junction Promotions mAnAgEr: John Hitt distribution: Reggie Brew, John Hitt
encore is published weekly, on Wednesday, by Wilmington Media. opinions of contributing writers are not necessarily the opinions of encore.
25 / pub 26 / December 30, 2009 - January 5, 2010
CorrespondenCe: p.o. Box 12430, Wilmington, n.C. 28405 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.encorepub.com phone: (910) 791-0688 • Fax: (910) 791-9177
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
Things we won’t miss in ‘09: • The word “recession.” • “Jon and Kate Plus 8” • Sarah Palin’s Going Rogue book tour. • Anything ‘H1N1’ related. • Smoking in NC bars. Things we will miss in ‘09: • Smoking in NC bars (hey, it’s bittersweet). • John Updike, David Carradine, John Hughes, Walter Cronkite, Bea Arthur, Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett and, yes, even Billy Mays. • Brett Favre kicking ass with the Minnesota Vikings. • Obama’s brief favorable ratings.
in the 2010 Creative Writing and Toons Contest, be on the lookout for a call for entries beginning in August! Happy New Year!
artsy smartsy ............16-22 16 music: Make the best of the New Year by being at the hottest party in Wilmington on December 31st at the Soapbox: Benji Hughes and his immacualte band will be making contact with grooves and tunes that will shake 2010 to the bone. And what better way to kick off a new year than with a shake and shimmy? Check out Adrian Varnam’s interview with the musician on page 16.
17-20 soundboard: See what bands and solo musicians are playing in venues all over town.
22 gallery guide: Find out what exhibitions are hanging in our local art galleries.
grub & guzzle ............24-26 24-26 dining guide: Need a few suggestions on where to eat? Flip through encore’s dining guide, and read about our featured restaurant of the week.
extra! extra! ..............28-35 28 news of the weird: Chuck Shepherd gets the dish on the strangest and oddest news around the world.
30-35 calendar/’toons/corkboard: Find out where to go and what to do about town with encore’s calendar; check out Tom Tommorow
and encore’s annual ‘toons winner, R. Blanton; read the latest saucy corkboard ads.
Say goodbye to 2009 NEW YEAR’S EVE AT FIBBER’S
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below Contest Winners 0 Cover Story
The winners are... E very year, we, at encore, host our annual Creative Writing and ‘Toons Contest, where we call out to local creative-types to show off their chops in storytelling (fiction or non) and illustrations. And every year we’re inundated by a gaggle of entries that impress, intrigue, inspire and induce many a laugh. Two thousand and nine was no exception—in fact, it brought with it a slew of talent for us to choose two new contributors to encore during the 2010 year. After two months of reading through countless (more than 50) stories and cartoons, we’ve chosen Claude Limoges’ fascinating series, “An Involuntary Intimate,” to run every other week throughout the new year. Likewise, Jay Schiller’s especially funny current news’
0 News of the Weird
TOONS WINNER: Jay Schiller
by: Shea Carver
toon, also known as “More on TV,” will titillate the news junkies and politicos alike. Stay tuned for more from these contributors. And as a bonus within our last edition of the year, we’ve decided to dedicate the majority of our pages to some of the other writers and illustrators who piqued our interest. Sure, we could have thrown together one of those cliché, boring Top 10s of 2009, but, really ... our local talent proves far more interesting. So grab an aperitif, some java or absinthe (whichever suits your fancy), and enjoy a little bit of fun reading. Happy holidays and be well!
CREATIVE WRITING WINNER: Claude Limoges
An Involuntary Intimate
Cheri, however, did interest. At the comeorge watched on his monitor first shift receptionist Cheri clutch her bel- pany ropes course, they had put Cheri on ly, rock, then roll off the toilet onto the George’s back, and he had felt her breasts mashed against his shoulder blades, her legs ladies room floor. Automatically George reached for the remote around his hips, her pubis at the small of his to surf for a game or something with Bruce back, and he had staggered cheerily under her Willis. No remote. This was on his computer, weight, all the while thinking of the mole on her shot from his own camera, planted two months left ass cheek. Had they not been slammed toago, for reasons, he told himself, of company gether by a great impersonal machine called busisecurity, now painting a grim image that made ness, then what, really, would he ever have had to him feel betrayed, as if the camera vendors had say to her? Other than discussing the postseason known about this other side to surveillance and woes for the Colts, what was there, really, that he were now laughing at him, shouting at him to had ever had to say to anyone in the company? Only $39.99 from Secure-a-Home-dot-com. fetch a tampon. When the puddle of blood engulfed a square Wireless, motion-activated, with live viewing foot of tile, George rose from his desk, edged and no sound recorders, which would make along the glass partition out of his office, and them illegal. And why not? Sales of hidden spy in passing Ruth Oglesby’s cubicle murmured, cameras had soared. According to the Ameri“You’ve got something stuck between your can Management Association, more than 50% teeth,” hoping to inspire her toward the ladies of the 523 managers interviewed had their room. Striving for nonchalance, George contin- employees under surveillance. Wherever he ued toward the water fountain, glancing back went, George imagined they were there—in to see Ruth pull out her compact and check her houseplants, picture frames, smoke detectors, teeth. He had never before deliberately spoken speakers, sprinkler heads, exit signs, clock rato Ruth, had a vague fear about her, ever since dios, air fresheners. His venture was small peasomeone said they caught her one evening in nuts. The brochure said to use them sparingly the nearby cemetery, picking the plastic flow- in very targeted applications. George bought four—one inserted into the ers and making an arrangement out of them for her dinner table. When she would enter the outlet plate in the bedroom so that he could restroom stall, George quickly let his screen watch Melissa get ready for work, one in a saver take over, for the private matters of Ruth clock on the living room mantel to keep tabs on Oglesby appealed to him as much as the bit- who she invited over, one for business trips or rather the adjacent hotel room which after setten-off head of a bat. encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
up he would forfeit to the secretary, saying the view was better; and then this one, which easily fit into a small hole in the restroom wall. No one had to know what had helped Cheri keep her job—a mole whose descent onto the toilet rim recalled Strauss’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra. It was George’s personal greeting each morning, as welcome as a bell hop in a Fifties musical. He sensed with sickness the tie to her he had covertly created. A month ago he had watched her check and check again the wad of toilet paper. He had known why she had grown habitually late for work, why she hogged the water fountain, why she had been eating constantly at her desk, and why lately, though she was warned to be nice to everyone, she rejoiced in snapping at solicitors. He gathered why Carl, the UPS man, no longer hung out at the front desk. George swiped a gulp of fountain water and scanned the atrium for signs of a woman who might walk through the ladies room door and see and call 911. No one was coming, he realized at the same time that he remembered he had not turned off the monitor so that anyone even now could be walking into his office and discovering a woman bleeding to death. She was lying there just behind that door, and no woman in the building was deciding to check her lipstick, fiddle with her hair, empty her bladder, as if they had declared this of all morn-
ings a once-in-a-lifetime holiday from vanity and comfort so that this woman could drop to the ground, miscarriage, hemorrhage—unreal as it seemed, she was dying in there. George attempted a saunter back to his office and deflated into his chair, keeping his eyes off the monitor. He rubbed his eyes, swiveled his chair to the window, and watched through the blinds for flashing lights. Feeling for the monitor button, he held a dialog with himself. Surely someone will go in soon. Or maybe she’ll just wake up and crawl out of there or shout. Just turn it off. No, tell somebody, for Christ’s sake. If you don’t they’ll get you for manslaughter. But if you say anything, they’ll wonder how you knew, and you’ll lose it all— job, apartment, savings, retirement, and Melissa, who will dig up the two in the apartment and just leave. Then your mug will be smeared across web sites on sex offenders. Women will look at you as if you were a cockroach. Anyway, how is this your fault? With distance it will all fall away and happen as if you had seen nothing. The camera does not matter. No one knows. No one has to. George glimpsed at Cheri—she hadn’t moved—perhaps was dead already. The puddle of blood was now a pool edging out of the stall toward the sinks. George closed the video and brought up a spreadsheet. Made a pie chart. 3D. Company colors.
CREATIVE WRITING RUNNER UP: Joel Finsel
TOONS RUNNER UP: Anghus Houvouras
he same scuffed books, the same graffittied desks, the same ant blanket of insecurity. But this time Julian wasn’t the quiet kid skidding past with a slightly above-average average, barely awake in the back corner of the room because he’d stayed up late before having to get up early and deliver the Morning Call. Wearing a pale green necktie, yellow shirt and pleatless chinos, Julian stood before a class of thirty-three ninth-graders wondering what the hell he was supposed to do. “Okay…so…today we are going to talk about the earliest surviving piece of English Literature,” he announced in a dry, raspy voice. Lately his esophagus felt like a piece of rubberized chicken forgotten about weeks ago in the back of the refrigerator. Blank faces stared back. He opened his Teacher’s Edition, cleared his throat and took a deep breath “Let’s begin with a volunteer to read the background notes on page 27.” He looked up to a room of wiggling grubs. Julian’s mentor, Mrs. Warburg, glared from her desk in the back of the room. She was in her early-thirties and four months pregnant. J was her first student teacher. It was a choice she’d made to help alleviate some of the stress from her workload, yet the situation had apparently backfired. No matter how late he stayed up preparing, or invitations to weekend parties he ignored to read ahead and write lesson plans; no matter how many cups of tea Mrs. Warburg drank or Hershey’s kisses she popped, the look she projected would have shriveled the lacquer off the Mona Lisa’s toenails. Compounded by the ganja-stinking jokester laughing perpetually in the corner, yawning redhead in the second row, and long-haired Dead Kennedy Goth asleep at his back desk, Julian forced back the bile rising into his throat. “Come on,” he called out a little louder, inflating his chest against a sense of suffocation, “You all like swords and drunken heroes battling gangly bottom-lurking swamp beasts, don’t you? Or is it just too easy nowadays with video games and internet…?” He almost said porn. A couple of kids smiled, but few others even moved. “You!” he addressed the smart-looking girl in a cardigan before quickly looking down at his seating chart, “Samantha?” Samantha nodded. “Would you mind taking the reigns here and gracing us with your voice?” It was not a question. “Page 27. Thanks.” As Samantha read about how the original manuscript was found—having been used as a Viking’s cutting board—Julian confronted visions of his own self at their age. In tenth grade, paralyzed by the constant fear of standing out, he rationalized not raising his hand (even if he was confident he knew the correct answer) because he didn’t want to appear smart. If he disagreed with a classmate during open discussion, he’d fume inwardly… but never speak his mind.
He knew now the only way to get his class out of their funk was to bridge the gap by building them up, slowly, one by one, helping them see connections between what they needed to learn and what they already knew. In the end, it wasn’t a particularly brutal class. Julian took over reading, modeling different intonations and inflexions, and later calling on kids at random to continue, stopping when his Teacher’s Edition presented him with a prepared question or “Point of Interest.” “There will be a quiz tomorrow on the pages 3240,” he announced with a minute left. “Make sure you write these numbers in your notebooks.” Seconds later students shuffled out the door, reclaiming their places within the relative social hierarchy of the school. That went well enough, he thought, smiling as the last one left. As he finished gathering up his things from the podium, Mrs. Warburg waved him over, her eyebrow twitching. “Those kids are taking advantage of you,” she came close to yelling, “You have no control!” Julian looked down. “Now, that’s okay,” she scorned, regaining a practiced visage. “It’s okay if you want to sit in the back of the bus…but not if you want to be their teacher.” Silence. “This is the third class you’ve taken over and I can read it ALL OVER their faces. You have a reputation for being easy. Even before they first come in here, they know they can take advantage of you.” Julian looked up, brows creased together. A moment passed. Mrs. Warburg took a breath. “I know you’re working hard,” her voice softened. Clenching her fist, “But I want to see you TAKE CONTROL. I want you to come up to the front of the bus and take the steering wheel!” “Okay,” he nodded, feeling a bit better, almost slightly upbeat. “I will.” But she wasn’t finished. “You need to make an example out of one of them.” He regained his squint, hesitating. Tightening her expression, Mrs. Warburg looked around the vacant room, her heels clopping as she moved to close the heavy door. After it stooped shut, she turned back at him. “The students need to know you mean business,” she said, moving her rotundness toward him once again. “They need to know they won’t get away with acting up around you!” “Okay,” nodding, “I’ll be tougher.” “Damn right you will. You need to assert some command, some discipline! And in the next class you’re going to prove it!” ”Okay?” “I don’t care who, but next class you will give someone detention!” Birds sang outside the classroom window, taking flurried turns on the cheap plastic feeder in the courtyard. Julian took a step back. “I don’t know if I can just….”
“You will do it,” she cut in, “And you wanna know why?” Mrs. Warburg’s held her stare as Julian began side-stepping his way around her. “Because at the rate you’re going I will be forced to give you a C in Student Teaching and that would be extremely detrimental for future job prospects!” Moments later, inspecting his likeness in the lavatory mirror, he replayed the scene in his mind. Make an example out of someone? But what if everyone was good, as they usually were in 3rd period honors? Would I have to provoke
something just to appease this crazy bitch? Splashing cold water on his face, the rookie teacher squinted back at his sunken features, marveling at the black circles settling around his eyes. This was only his third week of actual teaching. I wonder what my eyes will look like in 30 years? Wiping his hands dry on a coarse paper towel, Julian headed back to the hall. A colleague he was yet to meet approached, her face strikingly alive. “Did you hear?” she asked, “A plane crashed in Manhattan?”
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Benjamin E. Inch
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– Amy has small breasts, B-cup to be generous, and guys are supposed to like heaving bosoms, yes? Bradley (Brad to friends, like me and now you) has a list he works on almost every day. It isn’t documented anywhere yet, just a jumble floating around his mind, but he’s pretty sure there’s at least twenty-five entries (so far). He’s been compiling this list for long enough that totally new data is rare, and that it shouldn’t really be needed anymore. However, this list full of reasons he shouldn’t be in love with Amy is inadequate at best, and an exercise in humiliating, pseudo-idealistic, self-loathing futility at worst. We’ll stick with inadequate. Amy dances in his head every night as he sleeps next to his girlfriend (who isn’t on the list, strangely), Abigail. She’d be none too happy to find some other bitch in her territory, if she weren’t blind. Brad’s been in this years-long mental wrestling match with his list, trying to mold it to efficiency, but the spectacle of Amy’s beauty and charm is an elusive concept, paradoxically hard to identify and harder to ignore. Amy herself doesn’t help in his struggle; quite the opposite, and neither do her beautiful B-cups resting in Brad’s palm. “You’re terrible,” he mutters with the conviction of a crooked priest. They’re in an elevator at the Rising Tide, the beachside hotel at which they both work. #3 – Amy’s a coworker, and that sort of thing is frowned upon. The hotel provides an unfortunately useful setting in which to propagate their non-relationship. There’s dozens of little nooks and closets unseen by passers-by in which to get their clandestine jollies. “Why?” she asks, suddenly pouty, as if she doesn’t know. Because you’re the girl, it’s your job to stop unwanted advances, he thinks. Because she squeezed his hands over them, he’d just planned to tease the contact. Because she’s tossed the lasso around him yet again. “I don’t know,” he half-lies, only half because he can’t pick from the litany of reasons she is, in fact, terrible. She turns around, ass escaping pelvis, and throws her arms up, draping his shoulders, green eyes shining, beckoning jade beacons. His instincts tell him to kiss her, deep, that’s why she’s blushing, but his brain tells him otherwise, and his brain gets him in trouble less often. #15 – Amy sets artificial, arbitrary boundaries, foremost in frustration of which is her neck. He doesn’t know if a kiss on the mouth is off-limits, but he’s learned to assume so unless otherwise instructed. Stuff like that is on a need-to-know basis, and in the world of his lasso she determines the definitions of needs. He sometimes gets brave, crosses the neck border, knowing the result, wanting to leave her things to ponder afterward. Her blush passes, the embrace loosens, and he makes a move for the button to reactivate the elevator. “Gotta get back to work,” he ex-
plains, pants a measure too tight, tight as the knot in his stomach, eternal opponent to the list. She smacks him on the backside as they get out, like a possessive marine biologist tagging her dolphin for further study. Brad works maintenance at the Rising Tide. It gets damn hot this far south in the summer, so the place never lacks for busted air conditioning units. The hotel’s proximity to the beach and adjacent bars also provides plenty of broken doorknobs and smashed Mr. Coffees. Amy works the front desk. Brad told me her constant interaction with people, mostly men, is how she practices her delightful witchcraft. Without the practice, he figures, she couldn’t keep all the drooling, doting plates spinning. #10 – Nearly every man within a 15-mile radius is, or at one point has been, smitten with Amy. Brad’s been watching one of her adherents lately, a guy that works in the bait’n’tackle across the street. Not watching him with the hostility of say, a jealous boyfriend, but with a sort of nostalgia, a sort of amusement. He started coming by a few months ago on a clever enough pretense: the selection in the vending machines in the lobby was the best around. He needed to work on his follow-through, though. He always got a Pepsi and a bag of Lay’s (classic), but the snack machine had gone inoperative for a week, and the guy showed up all five of his working days anyway. Brad fixed the machine three days ago, and the guy hadn’t bought any chips since. He got his Pepsi and sauntered over to the front desk, grinning like a dope, and leaned against the counter for at least twenty minutes every time. Brad figured he could break the soda machine and he’d still show up. Upon examining his own experiences, Brad concluded that he could break the guy’s legs and he’d drag himself in, or have a pal cart him around. The sacrifices to Amy’s altar were many and diverse. “If he’s so revolting, why don’t you scare him off?” Brad asked her some time later in the day. She’d told him the guy reeked of fish, which he did, occupational hazard and all. Brad wondered if she talked to the fish guy about the maintenance guy that reeked of grease. “That’t be rude, he might wanna stay sometime, and I don’t like being mean.” She said it with a certain forced conviction. “You don’t mind being mean to me,” Brad contested. “How am I ever mean to you?” You don’t let me kiss your neck, you never come out with me when I ask, you don’t leave your asshole husband for me. For Brad. He could go on. #6 – Amy’s asshole boyfriend (at time of recording), now her asshole husband, who she doesn’t like. Probably should have mentioned him earlier. “I don’t know, you just are.” “I figured as much,” she said. Brad took his leave as some potential guests came through the door. She discreetly blew him a kiss as he left.
TOONS HONORABLE MENTION: Joe DiBenedetto
CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Nicole Yatsonsky
In The Dark
hated when cars pulled into our driveway. They were always only making U-turns, but my heart got ever closer to boring out of my chest every time they did. I wonder if the drivers knew what it did to me, how each time I said a silent prayer that tonight wouldn’t be the night they found us. Because one time, with one flash of headlights through the horizontal blinds, it’ll be the night that they do. Do you think it’s possible to remember everything and nothing from a moment in your life? That’s how it is with the night we left our house in Ashebury, the only place of the dozens we’ve been to that I’ve ever considered home. Some things are so vivid, like a film reel moving behind my eyes: the sound of footsteps rushing throughout the house; my mother’s frantic and unsure voice down the hall; my father bursting into my room, scooping me from my bed and into his arms. Half asleep, I remember thinking I was flying, my feet never touching the ground as I was swept from my bed, to his arms, to the worn material of the station wagon’s backseat. There are things I don’t remember. Like when the phone must have rung, alerting my parents that we were no longer safe in the house I had spent the first nine years of my life, the house with the deck my dad and grandfather had spent a whole summer building, the house my mother filled with tea cups she had collected since she was a little girl. I didn’t know when there had been time to pack the bag with clothes and necessities, or that one had even come with us, until I woke up to it next to me on the seat. Now that I think about it, I’m convinced that bag was packed all along, set aside somewhere in the back of my parent’s closet or under my dad’s work bench in the basement, just another of the countless secrets they’ve kept. When you ask your father what he does for a living and he tells you “superhero,” a daughter is inclined to believe him. Of course, as I got older, being a member of the Justice League wasn’t going to suffice as a legitimate business practice, so when I asked again, he told me he really did fight bad guys, but in some super secret way just like a superhero that he couldn’t really discuss.
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I asked if mom knew. He said his job was best achieved the less people knew, which never was an answer. Did he mean the less number of people who knew what he did the better, or the less information people knew about his job? It was a perfect, vague and cryptic response that led me to no inclinations whatsoever about where he went everyday or what he did once he got there. My mother never asked any questions, so neither did I. I got the unspoken sense from both of them that none of the rest mattered as long as we were all happy and safe. It seems to me you can have the latter without the former, but once the latter goes, the former isn’t far behind. After we left Ashebury, we spent the night in a motel off I-70. I thought we were just going on a road trip. Dad stayed in a separate room next to us, so he could be near enough if we needed him, but had time to get away if they found him first. I kept drifting in and out of sleep, my mother and father’s voices reaching my ears in broken sentences. “…but my mother said it’d be fine, she’s not worried about…” “…not willing to put her in this situation, it’s bad enough with you and Megan having to…” “…worry about you, too, and what will happen if…” “…get away from this, keep moving, cover our tracks and…” I couldn’t understand it then, what it all meant. It was fun at first, new people and places, getting to be anyone I wanted, occasionally forgetting what my name was that week—Veronica, Chelsea, or maybe Amber. My only-child imagination loved creating fantastic background stories of a royal family running from an evil witch or members of the circus just breezing through town. The glamour of being anyone but me and having any other life but mine hasn’t worn off, it’s just a lot harder to get away with wearing a tutu in high school, while trying to convince everyone your Russian ballet parents are here to do a show on Broadway. I know now what I couldn’t see then—that nothing after that first night was ever going to be as it was. After countless motels and quickly abandoned rental homes, never unpacking or making any friends, “home” would always be something that taunted us like the horizon—visible, but out of reach.
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Floyd Longworth Excerpt from:
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he summer of 83, we were young punk rockers pissed at the world, Tim and I had just finished selling plasma at the blood bank.We figured with the loss of blood we would be able to get drunk easier and cheaper on the 20$ each we had so unselfishly earned. Dressed in our punk attire of the day, we decided to set off in search of a bar with the cheapest beer around. Now back in 1983, punk was not the edgy fashion statement it is today. We had no Hot Topics. Punk clothing was very DIY at the time and it meant shopping for funky threads we could afford at Goodwilll and the Salvation Army. The result was often that of a gay homeless look. 1983 in Cleveland where this tale of mischief and triumph takes place, this look was the cause of much negative attitude and sometimes violence by un-approving red necks and frat boys alike. The fact that Tim had the dubious honor of being Clevelandâ€™s only black punk rocker made him especially brave in my book. So factor this into the following mayhem that will soon unfold. No clubs or bars really catered to punk rockers, The rage was hair metal at the time, apparently the gay biker look trumped the gay homeless look. The bus dumped us off downtown by Cleveland State, in the midst of frat-boy land. Ahead, a banner proclaiming dollar Rolling Rocks! Honestly we knew it was a sports bar, but the lure of dollar beer proved to be to strong. We were men on a mission. Inside the bar the sounds of â€œBon Josephineâ€? singing about how tough it was to live on a prayer assaulted our ears, and the garish light of twenty TV screens assaulted or eyes, still we soldiered on. In my peripheral vision I could see the bouncers murmuring and shaking their heads in our direction. â€œBig brother is watching youâ€?. 1984 was still a year away but arriving early. Apparently some horrible local main stream radio station was sponsoring this happy hour â€œeventâ€?. A banner hung above explaining that WNZS
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planned on rocking us. A deejay booth was set up on stage. Behind a Plexiglas window a big ,fat, obnoxious deejay with an Afro, Hawaiian shirt, and sunglasses was baiting the crowd between hits by â€œCinderfellaâ€? and â€œDef Lipshtickâ€?. â€œYouâ€™re partying with Clevelandâ€™s best rock! WNZS!! Where the rock never stops! yeah! Iâ€™m uncle Vic! the man of the hour, happy hour that is, bringing you Clevelandâ€™s best rock!!â€? This guy represented to me all that was wrong and hateful in the world. He was all full of himself using that jokey phony deejay voice they all use. I mean how many times can you use â€œ rockâ€? in a sentence? â€œIâ€™ll tell ya whatâ€?, he continued â€œWeâ€™re gonna play a little game called flash the deejay! The first lovely ladies to come up front here and flash the deejay will win a pitcher of ice cold beer!â€? Maybe it was the crappy music, the flashing TVs, the polo shirts, or perhaps only the cheap beer taking effect in my blood deficient system, but something snapped in my head. â€œSeize the moment!â€? a voice from within seemed to bark. Without thinking I grabbed a big plate of nachos slathered in cheese sauce and made my way to the booth. Tim saw the purpose in my eye and chugged directly from the pitcher not wanting to get thrown out and leaving valuable unfinished cheap beer behind. I charged the deejay booth and at the last second pretended to fall. I smashed the plate of nachos into his big Plexiglas widow smearing the cheese and chip all along the glass. â€œBad move asshole!â€? came the deejayâ€?s voice booming over the speakers. I felt the bouncerâ€™s grip as he embraced me in a hammer lock. As I was being dragged out I heard the deejay solemnly reprimand me over the p.a., â€œ You punks donâ€™t know how to have fun!â€? â€œFuck you!â€? I yelled back, â€œThat was the most fun I had all day!â€?
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Murphy Turner
he sun shines too bright for me today. I throw on my sunglasses on the way to my car. I’m pondering the place I find myself. College towns breed a weirdness all their own. Subcultures spring up and die out, while some linger like the scent grandma left in my hand-me-down 93’ Ford Taurus. Every time the air-conditioning goes on: SMACK! I choke on the reek of Grammy’s rotting flesh. God rest her sweet soul. My second week here begins with my first week of classes. The last week I scoured the town looking for dive bars (plenty), thrift stores (a few promising ones), coffee houses (two – one commercial entity and a curious place in downtown), and women (gorgeous). On the way to my first class, I decide to stop by the non-commercial coffee house for a pick-me-up. I saunter into the Righteous Indignants’ Coffee House through a pair of swinging doors like you’d find in a saloon. “Simon!” A voice calls from the far end of the bar, “a cup o’ the green tea?” “Surely, my friend.” “Do you come bearing gifts, then?” “I do.” “Then I’ll lock up. Won’t be a moment.” James comes around the bar. He’s tall and fair and sounds like he’s off the boat from Ireland. That’s probably because he is just one year removed from off the boat, or plane rather. All the same, he’s new to the states and retains much of his brogue and intonations, which I find appealing. Plus, for the last week, he’s been serving me green tea in exchange for a buzz; a buzz which I would have caught anyway. And, it’s nice to have a friend along on such occasions. “James, what is the deal with this place man?” “Well, it’s a student-run organization. A theater club, actually. The coffee house provides funds for the productions.” “But how did y’all get the coffee house?” “Och, that’s a story for ya. Seems that back some twenty years or so, one lad named Brian had a real knack for writing grants, ya see. ‘E set up some kind o’ trust which served to buy the property and pay all the taxes and such. After that ‘e managed to get ‘imself elected to the local council and pass an act giving the property some special rights. Was a true wizard that one was. For all intents and purposes, this building is owned by the Righteous Indignants’ Theater Group.” “That’s quite nice. Where are the others? How does one join?” “Ye’ve only met me because I’ve been ‘ere takin’ care o’ the place o’ late. Everyone’ll be comin’ back now. You’ll meet the rest o’ the Indignants. Your currency is good here. But, there’s a lengthy process in joining us, Simon. Could take a semester or two, even. I’m not sayin’ don’ try, but ye’re new here. Best getcher bearin’s first. ”
TOONS HONORABLE MENTION: Brian John Mitchell LOST KISSES
James seems wise to me. I’m not really sure if I want to be part of some weird cult anyway. But the tea tastes lovely and the bar has a deep, old charm. There is a long bar of some darkly-stained wood. James says it’s cherry, but if so, it must weigh a ton. The floors shine in a beautiful, blonde wood that looks to be as old as the town, with faint dark lines running wispily through it. There are various couches around and a stage along the far wall. “This place is worth investigating further,” I tell myself as I give James a nod goodbye. Ah! Blasted sunlight pierced me as soon as I open the door. The swinging doors seem like the gateway to hell as I steel myself for the oppression of daylight. I still have to register. I hand my registration papers to the woman at the door. Inside the temporary registration room for all the last-minute enrollees, I feel as though time has stopped passing and taken a siesta. The room is silent as a wake, with hushed whispers emanating from the folding tables set up in the front of the room. The front of the room! Oh dear god, it looks like a mosh pit, only no one is moving. Mind-sucking boredom attacks me from all sides. I assume my place in line. I know no one there. The faces: gray, sullen, & indistinct for me as yet (although a school this size doesn’t have enough students to get hide in). Towards the front, a girl with thick brown curls and radiant green eyes turns around, looks right at me and beams. I’m not saying that I’m lucky, but while suffocating in that sea of endless, soul-crushing waiting, I happen to, in desperation, find the most beautiful face I’ve spied in a long time. And it’s grinning at me like I am an old friend. This girl outshines the rest of the room. I know that if I look away, they’ll all seem like peasants next to her. A loud, high voice pierces our moment with “Sadie Castrati?” The culprit, a 60-ish woman with flabby jowels & glasses far too big for her face looks expectantly forward. I look back to the beauty and she has already turned away, casting her gaze upon the old woman who ruined our moment. But this new moment is private - not between us, but for me alone, as I see her back and the curly splash of hair around her shoulders. Her waist and the bell of her hips remind me of older models; when women looked like women and not like little boys. Too short a time passes before Sadie Castrati turns to leave. As she does, her eyes come to meet mine immediately. She picks her way through the crowd, smiling at me. As she gets within touching range she winks and says “Don’t worry, this too shall pass.” Her voice shimmers in my ears. And then she is gone. An eternity later, an old woman calls my name. I approach her expectantly.
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Robert Anton Wilson
TOONS HONORABLE MENTION: Kevin Thomas Ward
In The Kitchen
he humid stench of the subway abruptly evaporated as soon as I crossed the avenue, dodging a speeding yellow taxi. A short but slender woman behind me almost tripped, but her dark Columbian male companion grabbed her arm and pulled her to safety by the changing crosswalk sign. Once they quickly adjusted to the comfort of the sidewalk and the automatic doors of the corner Duane Reade, they released one another, but resumed what must have been an intimate stroll earlier, as they kept a close, steady connection--eyes straight ahead, most likely seeking a pleasant restaurant to dine in and converse over a generous entree and seductive dessert. For myself, it had been quite awhile since I rewarded myself with premium food, cooked by renowned chefs or small time cooks that have brought their country’s culinary arts to the United States, protecting it as a parent would protect its child from the corruption of later life and civilization. This morning, Irene, my supervisor happily informed me that my salary would be raised after my three weeks of “spellbinding” work with the magazine. She especially was impressed with my interview of the lead singer from a Balkan band that was gaining a cult following in the Lower East Side. “You got him, Derrick. You fucking got him on the page. I can almost smell the Russian meat in this magazine. It stinks of some dirty street gypsy. Almost makes me want to play the tambourine.” It had been so long and I had been living by myself for two years, but after the good news from Irene, as she casually congratulated me, perhaps unintentionally pressing her supple breasts into my gray suit, I was certain by lunchtime that I was treating myself to an exquisite dinner with attractive waitresses gently refilling my cup of water. I had thought about inviting Irene and although any chance of sex was out of the question, I then thought of how rude I would’ve appeared as I toyed with my silverware and made subtle remarks to the vulnerable servers.
The Duane Reade was now behind me and I now decided that these vulnerable servers would be Asian. Thai, in particular. I love how these petite women avert their shy eyes, pretending to admire the designs or shine of the dining table. It was the perfect idea, even though I was in Hell’s Kitchen. I had passed by a corner Thai restaurant months ago and never went in. It had some ridiculous name like Pad Thai or Tom Yum, but I saw the hostess as I walked by and I only prayed that she would be there tonight. She wore a red dress, which may have been her supposed work outfit or uniform, but I only imagine her wearing that, whether she’s placing menus on tables or making her bed in her apartment. I was certain it was merely three blocks away, but I discovered it was at least another ten more. It was past eleven and there were still people on the streets, though they seemed to be sparse tonight, considering it was New York. On Saturday nights I could walk all night in any part of the city, and I could pick at least ten women I would love to take home with me. At the same time I could also pick twenty women that I would never take home with me. It’s certainly not because they’re hideous and as far as my cherry pickings, I don’t take in mind the man these women might have next to them, as these pathetic animals clutch their skinny arms like a dog bites into their bone. I see these women that I would never want because I could see they’ve let the city seep into their beautiful bodies and take over like some alien symbiote. Women like that are considered typical, the survivors. They get the stereotypes of maybe work-alcoholic, cold-hearted, tunnel visioned, never-smile-even-after-they-come-in-bed bitches. They are viewed as strong, but I see the exact opposite—weak and unable to defend themselves from the worst parts of human nature and civilization. The city isn’t poison, unless you allow it to poison you. These women take Manhattan like a drug and overdose to the point where they’re that blank straitjacket patient, staring into white walls for all eternity. Because that’s all they re-
ally want—white walls forever and ever. Only a block away and I thought of that woman that could’ve been killed by a cab, if it wasn’t for her Columbian boyfriend. I could be with that woman. She was beautifully strong and as she began to stumble I could see how open she was. That’s the type of woman my late mother would refer to as “lovely.” The lights in the restaurant were on but I knew my mind made them dim as I saw the Thai girl in the red dress, packing away tablecloths and folded napkins. I checked for my watch but saw I wasn’t wearing it. I carefully knocked on the unlocked glass door. The girl saw me and smiled as if she recognized me though I was sure she didn’t. “Hello!” “Hi there,” I said almost stammering. “Are you guys closed already?” “Yes, I’m sorry. We close at eleven o’clock.” “Really? Only at eleven? I mean—” I said, knowing I looked like a fool. She gave me the
most sympathetic look, as if she was turning away a starving orphan. “Very sorry. But we closed half hour ago.” “I see,” said the fool. What else could I say or do? Her accent was beautifully thick and I could smell the fading odor of curry all the way from the kitchen. “What’s your name?” “Chloe.” “Thank you, Chloe. I will stop by another time at an earlier hour.” “Thank you. Have a good night, sir.” She smiled before she went back inside to finish her closing chores. It was so deadly I could’ve crumbled right there on the concrete steps. “Under the present brutal and primitive conditions on this planet, every person you meet should be regarded as one of the walking wounded. We have never seen a man or woman not slightly deranged by either anxiety or grief. We have never seen a totally sane human being.”
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: William Cofflin
The Chosen Chapter One: The Chosen One(s) e stood arms crossed, leaning back against the big mahogony desk that was now his. A wry smile curled the corners of his thin lips. They’d belittled him, had referred to him as “a hillbilly whose arrogant ignorance was dwarfed only by his ego,” and they’d made fun of his newfound religious zeal, claiming that enlightenment had come to him as he lay face-down in a pool of his own vomit after a prolonged drinking binge and was, therefore, something less than genuine. In the end, he’d showed them all. He’d swept the election and taken The White House. He chuckled, shaking his head in mock disbelief. Who the hell did they think they were to question him, or his motives? They were flies, mindlessly buzzing one of their betters. His office overlooked a well-tended, newly walled-in lawn and he watched through the bulletproof glass as construction crews labored to finish the Japanese-style garden he’d ordered be installed. He wondered idly if those workers were all legal. He’d get CAD (the Covert Activities Department) on it: they were good at rooting out the undesirables. Along with FAT (Firearms, Alcohol and Tobacco), they were among his most reliable operatives- and both had played an important part in helping get him elected. Just don’t mention it to
the press, he thought. His smile broadened. It was good to be a god among men. A light knock at the door, and he twisted around to look. “Come in.” The door opened and in walked the Brawn to his Brain. Jon Smith, tall and powerfully built, skin burnt bronze by the sun, flashed his teeth in a friendly greeting. Dark eyes, shadowed beneath overhanging brows, reflected pinpoints of light as he advanced. His buzz cut glistened with gel, his neatly trimmed and waxed Van Dyke gleaming. He extended a hand. President Washington took it, shook it appreciatively as he returned the smile. “Jon,” he said: “It’s good to see you, son.” Smith broke contact. “You, too, sir,” he lied. He stood rigidly, at attention. His black silk uniform had been carefully tailored to accentuate his powerful build and both his freshly polished black leather boots and thick utility belt contrasted nicely with the fabric. Golden eagle badges pinned to either shoulder held his black cape in place: as leader of The Ubermen, he had to maintain. Washington turned away and stood gazing for several seconds at the workmen outside. He seemed lost in thought. Smith waited patiently. In his rumpled suit, Washington looked more like the small-time businessman the press had
called him than the leader of the free world. His already graying hair was thinning on top and the lines around his eyes and mouth had become more pronounced over the past year; the furrows across his forehead had deepened. Smith followed his gaze and watched the workers laboring in the noonday sun. His eyes narrowed. He made a mental note to himself to check the legal status of those workers; some of them“We have a problem,” the President announced. He sighed and turned tired eyes on his Chief of Security. “A big problem.” Smith frowned. “What is it?” “Dissension.” “Oh? Who?” Washington picked up a printout that lay on his desk and handed it to Smith. As Smith read, the President returned his attention to the workers outside. They were putting aside their tools and walking toward the pools of shade the trees provided. Most of them had skinned off their shirts to reveal bodies glistening with sweat. They moved slowly, like the walking dead from a horror movie. Smith lowered the printout. “Anarchists,” he breathed. Washington nodded. “They’ve hijacked an ocean liner off the coast of Africa and they’re demanding that I meet with them- or they kill
the passengers. All of them.” “Out of the question,” Smith said, matterof-factly. Again, the President nodded. “Absolutely.” They stood for several moments watching the workers rest. “Poseidon,” Smith said, finally: “We’ll have to go with Poseidon.” The President nodded. “Poseidon.” The Largesse sat motionless just off the coast of Africa, surrounded by half a dozen small gunboats. The pirates manning the gunboats waited patiently for their comrades who had boarded the luxury liner, looking around from time to time to scan the horizon for any signs of trouble. Duumbi stood leaning against a swivelmounted 60mm machine gun bolted to the deck of his boat. He wore only a ragged pair of shorts and a hat he’d taken from a victim on an earlier raid. The hat was too big for his head and he found himself constantly righting it, but he was determined to keep it: it was, after all, the spoils of war. An economic war. He glanced around, sighed- and suddenly stiffened, staring. Something was coming toward his boat. Something big. His eyes widened. A torpedo!
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CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Orion
he cells are abnormal,” delivered the white coat in a calm, but suspicious tone. The subzero room temperature wasn’t only for reducing “wet dog” stenches and flying fur. The frosty air was to help owners revive more quickly after fainting when receiving abnormal news. The poster of decayed and plaque-infested fangs that I stared at for the last hour made me wish gingivitis was the problem. The rest of the medical word wizardry raced out of the white coat’s mouth and cast a spell over my senses. I felt lightheaded and tingly. “Huh,” I stuttered. The white coat stooped beside me and assumed I’d hear her more clearly and respond in complete sentences if she got closer. I’m not deaf, but paralyzed by her analysis. Vivid images of memories and hopes orchestrated a slideshow in my mind. I rubbed my moist eyelids. The other normal celled dog propped her snow white chin on my knee and sent a spotlight of rescue to me with her Tarheel blue eyes. Neige always knew when my energy changed. I comprehended, “no food or water after midnight,” still fuzzyheaded and thinking that I was receiving instructions on how to avoid Gremlins, instead of bracing for a head-on collision.
Employing my final trick to win some rest at night, I placed my right palm over my bellybutton, and felt my breath rasp out like Darth Vader’s—“Hhhullllll, hhhulll.” I’d arranged the past fifteen months into an encyclopedia of plans and to-do lists, but how to handle a catastrophe was not included anywhere in my endnotes. Why do those damn dumb sayings always come to mind at the worst times: “Life is what happens while you are busy making plans.” My conscience was rewarded when thinking the author of the quote must have gotten assrammed, too. I was as unsweet as cocoa powder after remembering I was just four days from being free—a freedom I risked everything to have—but at this moment I had never felt more submissive to fear. Why had I forgotten to anticipate last minute miscellaneous disasters? At least I had the money for the procedure. I had penny pinched so wisely that I could’ve starred in my own thrift show. I grinned recalling all of the newspaper stands, Pepsi machines, and phone booths that I raided in months of quarter hunting. I had scraped every last cent and redirected Christmas presents and birthday gifts to be given as dollar bills. I had reconditioned myself to live with less, and I focused all of my activities on one major goal. Church attendance was devoted to prayer. After office hours was consumed by researching products and reading articles. Tuesday and Thursday mornings were running days. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings were weight lifting days. Five evenings were reserved for obedience training and walking with loaded packs. Wolfing six pancakes every Saturday morning was excused by a hike to Tinker Cliffs, McAfee’s Knob, or a less traveled route where I was scared to drive to the trailhead. Sleep was enjoyed dreaming of wild adventures and encounters with a giant talking moose that chewed while divulging, “Cwap twose woots tweetwimes and a sweecwet Pwizza Wut for wayfarers shwall wappear.” For nearly a year and a half my schedule had no variance or time allotted to listen to naysayers wagering for my odds. Although my belly breath didn’t induce
TOONS WINNER: Jay Schiller
sleep, I earned several hours of stillness in my worries. I wrestled out of the sandwich that Zelda and Neige finagled me into every night during bedtime, while they rested as if nothing had changed.Couldn’t I find a few moments of detachment, but I just repeated, “Oh my poor Zelda Z,” until my worry metastasized into a fire-breathing anger dragon. I DIDN’T WANT TO MAKE A FUCKING PLAN B! I’d cancel the trip and overprotect Zelda with smothering love and pink doggie sweaters to keep her from getting the sniffles. Time to buy bed ramps and holistic cannabis treats.Where would her grave go? Zelda knew I hated Virginia and wouldn’t want to be left in a place I’d never revisit to drop off a faux pig ear from time to time.I was shamed by my despair. Neige spied between the bedroom blinds as I loaded her mother into the backseat. The break in routine of no running shower water,
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rummaging through drawers, clacking high heels, or gurgling Mr. Coffee had already put Neige on high alert. She’d trailed me until I bent down for her French kisses, while the taste of my tears and snot from my nose confirmed the day was strange. I tugged at Zelda to come inside. “Please, no,” her aquamarine eyes answered. I mustered a weak smile at her, but any touch of happiness made me suffocate with tears. After signing paperwork that no food or water was given after midnight, and being pressed for a decision about teeth cleaning (I guess gingivitis was part of our luck after all), the white coat appeared. I gathered up my badass, Rambo tone, but only a sissy plea for guidance whimpered out: “Because I resigned, my job terminates in three days, sooo, uhhh, should I forget about my next six months of plans, including a ride to Georgia to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail , if Zelda has cancer?” The white coat approached. Stay back! I’m warning you!I’m a fire-breathing dragon that scorches white coats, bullshit, and pocket protectors! She bent beside me and her mouth opened. I gulped. I couldn’t handle her calm, but oo-kay not suspicious tone. I focused as her warm, sweet words slid down my apple silhouetted body like caramel. She offered, “Even if Zelda’s mass is cancerous, she won’t know anything is wrong unless you treat her differently. She’s in excellent health.I can’t think of a better way to enjoy life with your Siberian huskies than to hike the Appalachian Trail together. No matter what the test results show you must HIKE-ON.”
CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Steven Vineis
hey didnâ€™t tell me everything. Sixty dollars for a seventeen hour shift, watching the desk overnight at a motel. From four in the afternoon to nine the next morning, I would have to fetch towels and welcome late arrivals before locking the office doors at midnight and tidying up the lobby. They gave me a cot in the back and told me I could probably sleep through most of the night. They were lying but I was starving. Itâ€™d been a season of red-ink letters, bold print on the envelopes of my tuition bills. The water was off for a week and electricity was a fond memory. I had been subsisting off of Pay Day candy bars cut into thirds, one piece at each meal time. I figured it wouldnâ€™t be so bad. I was eager. I could deal with people. Well, not all people, as Iâ€™d come to find out. The pastel paint was scabbed from brushstrokes that lingered too long. The lobby was kitsch, ornamental lighthouses on shelves and nude mermaids carved from exotic wood hanging on the wall. The room-keys were gold metal and hung from nails on a board behind the desk. There was no computer on which to keep a record. We used index cards. The owner stalked the lobby, unassuming in his shorts and a tshirt, listening to how I answered phones and quick to send me off into a room to assist the housekeepers so he didnâ€™t have to pay someone else to come in. They were building a bar and a go-kart track on the edge of the parking lot, and I could see the workers sun-burnt and miserable, drinking something strong and dark from Styrofoam cups while hammering or cutting. The rooms had been renovated but you couldnâ€™t tell. The beds were cheap and stiff, like sleeping in a drawer full of board games. The amenities were as limited as the staffâ€™s enthusiasm. The housekeepers drowsed about, stretching the sheets to cover all the blood stains and cigarette burns. I was sweating through my clothes, still embodying professionalism in my suit and tie as I cleaned tiny Hiroshimas from toilet bowls. The head housekeeper shouted from a perch on the edge of a guest bed, telling me which de-labeled bottle was the Windex. I could barely hear her or understand over the volume of a Spanish soap opera coming in fuzzy on the television. By six the workers wanted to be paid. Their hands covered in jailhouse tattoos as they reached for their earningsâ€”a twenty dollar bill for being there since dawn. They joked and laughed at me as I straightened my tie, asking me if Iâ€™d ever been to Carolina Beach before. I said of course and with gasoline-breath they told me to lock up early tonight, since Buddy was there. Buddy was the ownerâ€™s cousin. His gut entered the room before he did, and once his head arrived I knew it wasnâ€™t all there. He unfurled a hundred dollar-bill like a flag and told me to change it before disappearing until midnight. I watched the headlamp glow occasionally bathe the lobby in its stern grimace before I decided to grab a couple hours on the cot. It was like sleeping on a sack of bread crumbs. I had to get into it from the foot, lying uncomfortably nestled between the industrial wash-
TOONS WINNER: Brian John Mitchell LOST KISSES
er and dryer. The pillow case reeked of a history of the defeated, the weary, beaten heads which had laid there before. I heard a knock on the glass and then a furious hammering on the late-night call box. Buddyâ€™s voice came over the speaker like a burst of static. He fell through the door with a sack of shirts and jeans, asking me if I knew how to fire up the washer. I showed him and he stripped off his clothes, standing pale and bulbous in the laundry room. He used bleach despite the NASCAR rainbow of the cloth, and he stood sweating and content to watch the cycle behind the glass in his briefs. He lit a cigarette and gave me a courteous biography. He was from West Virginia, down here working for his cousin. When he looked around the room I saw his drunk eyes settling further back into his face, as if tears were primed to fall when he considered the success in the family that had nothing to do with him. He spoke quietly, telling me about growing up hard; how every victory was at a cost and how he couldâ€™ve done a good job with this place had he the chance to get in on it. As he pulled the wet clothes from the dryer he turned his focus on me. Before he could ask anything, I heard the steps of someone in the lobby. An old woman, moving slowly with either disease or fatigue, asked me the rate for a room. When I told her, she began fumbling in her purse for an accordion wallet full of credit cards and memberships. She pulled out a Government ID, an AARP and a AAA card. I told her we offered no discounts and we couldnâ€™t accept the check she was writing. She hollered; the room suddenly alive with her brittle voice that was comprised of a dozen tiny screams. Buddy came out from the laundry room, still offensive in his briefs, to see what the fuss was about. Without a word she cut her eyes to him then to me, and followed the same distorted path out the door. Buddy laughed and disappeared into the laundry room, and I heard the back door slam shut. He walked the edge of the pool towards his room; the moon unfavorably highlighting every flaw of his body and soul. I didnâ€™t sleep. I watched the dawn out front wake before me and I saw the streets fill again with rambling trucks, the sounds of bumper scrapes, and the promise of an unforgettable summer.
;;;.)2'36)49&.'31 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 13
CREATIVE WRITING HONORABLE MENTION: Eric Moorer
woke up this morning to the sound of an alarm blaring, the sun beaming in my face and sweat dripping down my face. another night of lucid dreaming. every fucking thing is so real that it hurts. I drag myself out of bed to the bathroom, I DO NOT turn on the lights. I hate to look at myself in the morning. 6:10am is when this routine starts. brush my teeth, take my vitamins, piss, get dressed. I am clearly nothing but a flesh covered robot. at this point begins the soundtrack of my day, which starts off mellow enough. soothing vocals over shimmering strings, light percussion. 6:25am, the walk to work begins. the soundtrack of my day begins to feel the anxiety coarse through my veins as the music intensifies. everything becomes more staccato, heavier, darker. shrill shrieks over trudging guitar. the air between my ears thick and cause things to become distorted the closer I get to that door. I enter and am greeted by the cold beeping of the security system. beep, one step, beep, two, beep, three step, beep. seven-nine-sixsix off. it stops dead and I begin to relax a bit. the coffee begins to brew at 6:43am and disperses an aroma that fills my nose that lets me know that everything will undoubtedly be okay. the coffee is a fucking liar. 6:56am, he, the devil in the flesh begins his journey to ruin everything. always with his negative, nagging comments, his stupid facial expressions that are suppose to express some type of power, but really just display him as the fool he is. my thirteen minutes of sanity have quickly been turned to pure disorientation and anger. I see red and am ready to destroy anything and everything. as he retreats towards the door the stress begins to recede and I am calm. the small parade of customers start to enter. Herb, 7am, large coffee. Max 7:07, small. Bill, 7:17, large coffee. Michael, 7:21, medium au lait. this completes “the gentlemen’s table”, a group of older men aged 55 to 75 who touch subjects such as politics (frequently), women (average), religion, or how poorly managed this coffee shop really is. throughout my morning tasks I always take time to inject myself into these conversations to enlighten myself. these men have seen much more than I have and most certainly know more than I do. I find this to be the easiest and best way to better myself. Samantha at 8:15 with her large mocha signals the end of the round table discussion as the gentlemen turn to peer at this enchanting young thing then exit one by one, leaving my mind satisfied and my tip jar full. I make my way to the back of the shop to start a new chapter of the soundtrack of my day that includes more biting guitar and haunted screams of vocalists who express my cur-
rent angst. 9:41am, one of my late regulars, Michelle barges in. Michelle is a sassy Brit transplanted here from Sydney. she does not hold her tongue. when informed of the changes taking place she quickly lashes out with insults of “plonker” and “ass”, plonker I can only assume meaning buffoon. as Michelle leaves 10am. 10:30am, I complete “his” tedious tasks and head back for my house. I arrive at home after taking the short walk to find one roommate at work, and one roommate still asleep. the typical pattern. both are musicians, one by choice and the other by trade. this bit of boredom drives me out of the house on a walk downtown, where no type of excitement is likely, but at least it’s not here. my walk is filled with a picturesque view, but once I pass my street, the view is lacking to say the least. I pass a street corner known for it’s drug dealings and am not the least bit shocked to see what’s going on. what is bewildering, however is the sound of gunshots that cut through the air and freeze time where it stands. women, men, children running as the shots ring out. bang. bang. bang. everything is audible as shells sprinkle the ground. “get out!” I hear a clear female voice cry. cannot help but to be entranced by the episode unfolding in front of me as everything appears to me in slow motion. I do not fear for my own safety, but in a situation like this, how do you know? ignorance and indifference I suppose you would call it. as everything begins to come back to real time, I remove myself and continue my journey, however at a brisk pace. I do not think twice about what I have just seen. once I reach downtown and am relieved to be away from that hell known as work and the prison known as home. the thing about a small town is that you go to the same places, walk down the same streets. you feel like time is not passing, but it is. I begin to feel time getting ahead of me,and I must find a way to catch up. my phone vibrates in my pocket with the sound of a bike bell going off. text message. it is from a familiar phone number, but a name I have deleted. the message reads: I feel alone a lot of the time. all of the time really. I thought this was what I wanted but I guess not. do you ever feel this way? no. no I don’t. but whose phone number is this? why can’t I figure it out, I think. I reply: it depends. I’m a pretty vacant person anyway. who is this? at this point I am tense. moments pass that feel like entire lifetimes. why do I care so much? the response comes and I stop. everything stops. everything is black. the blood coursing through me, black. the sky, black. everything. everything becomes nothing. everything stops...
Half off gift cards from local merchants www.HalfOffDepot.com/Wilmington
14 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
TOONS WINNER: Kevin Thomas Ward
.BLF.FNPSJFT%PXOUPXO 5 Live Theatres, 5 Cool Museums, Riverwalk, 20 Galleries, 100 Shops, Carriage Rides, Tours, 50 Restaurants, 0 Chains
Make Memories Downtown 5 Live Theatres, 5 Cool Museums, Riverwalk, 20 Galleries, 100 Shops, Carriage Rides,
$5.99 Lunches â€˘ $6.99 Dinners
Tours, 50 Restaurants
Serving Full Menu Until Midnight Every Day
All within walking distance
Free Beer Tasting & Tours Wed 6-8pm Free Wine Tasting Tue 6-8pm Free Live Music Th, Fr, Sa Nights 1/2 Price Apps 4-7 & After 9pm
Park FREE 1st hour at the Market Street Deck 9 N. Front St. â€˘ 'SPOU4USFFU#SFXFSZDPN â€˘ Kids Menu Avail
/&8:&"3Âľ4&7& ZFBS"OOJWFSTBSZ1BSUZ .0/%":
$1 Coors Lite Draft $1 Tacos 56&4%":
$2 Import Bottles $2 Molson and Blue Moon Drafts $5 Nachos â€˘ $6 Tequila Tender Faddi 8&%/&4%":
$2 Bud and Bud Light Bottles $1.75 Molson Canadian Draft 35Â˘ Wings $4 Vegge Faddi 5)634%":
Wes Sayer Live 10pm-2am No cover Free Champagne Toast at Midnight
SaTuRDay, JaN 2
$2.50 Domestic Bottles $6.25 Original Faddis â€˘ $10 Fajitas 46/%":
$6 Budweiser Pitchers â€˘ $7 Platter of 20 Wings
Join us for New Years Eve
FRIDay, JaN. 1
$2 Bud Light Draft â€˘ $3 Flying Dog Bottles $5 Quesa Mesas (a quesadilla) $6 Tad Bowls (a taco salad) $3 Pints â€˘ $5.25 Beerman Tacos $6.50 Philly Faddi
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DiNNEr spEcials 1/2 price draft beer and 1/2 well drinks.
Serving â€œPrivate Reserveâ€? steaks starting at $1399 steaks
OPEN FOR LUNCH & DINNER In the Cotton Exchange Downtown Wilmington
FREE PARKING www.paddyshollow.com encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 15
below Cover Story
We Have Liftoff!
Benji Hughes talks UFOs, the ladies and his return to Wilmington
harlotte-based crooner/musician/ladies man Benji Hughes has become the talk of 2009. From his critically acclaimed debut double-album, A Love Extreme (on famed indie label New West Records), to his mesmerizing live performances, Hughes has become a local legend with musicians and fans alike. Captivating audiences with soulful balladry and audacious rock, usually with sunglasses and a cape, and often without a shirt, he brings with him a personae and presence as impressive as his beard, and a back-up band as tight and impressive as any performing today. On New Year’s Eve, Hughes returns to Wilmington one last time to close out the year at the Soapbox. Recently, I spoke with Benji, via cell phone, who was sharing a van with his bandmates as they traveled the road between performances. e: You’ve played quite a bit in Wilmington this past year, and built a strong and rabid fan base here. What is it about this area that keeps you coming back? BH: [Incredibly long pause] Sorry, I’ve got some chatterboxes in here. I couldn’t think. Wilmington’s awesome. Yeah, we’ve come down there a few times now—it’s pretty sweet. We like it down there. There’s obviously a lot of really intelligent and wonderful people in Wilmington [To his bandmates: Can ya’ll just shut up for a second while I’m talking?!] Sorry. [To bandmates again: Just for a minute! It won’t take long.] Yeah, it’s been great! We love going down there. Playing those shows there was a lot of fun, great people in the crowd. And that’s why we keep coming back. We even got to play on a pier the last time we were down there—it was amazing. e: I heard from a source at that show that you saw a UFO that night. Is that true? BH: We did see a UFO that night. A lot of people saw a UFO that night. Wait, was it while we were indoors or outdoors? No, it was when we were on the pier. Since then it may have been identified—an identified ob-
ject—but at the time it was totally unidentified. What I saw just lasted for a moment; I just looked over and saw something wild that you don’t usually see, and I just didn’t know what it was. Since then, there’s been talk that it’s possibly—and I don’t wanna ruin it for the folks that may still believe it to be unidentified—but I have a feeling that there’s been talk that it was a military jet. Or maybe a rocket being fired. Quite a few miles away. It seems to kinda make sense. It’s possible that that’s what it is. But what I saw was kinda like a lampshade, and then it faded out. It was pretty far out. [ed. note: NASA launched a rocket in Virginia, as it turns out.] e: Conspiracy theories aside, what’s the appeal of your band to the fan base you seem to have? BH: Well, I think that I have a really attractive band. I’d like to think that we play pretty good and that we have some pretty good songs. I’d like to think that has a lot to do with it. But if it is just all because we’re good lookin’, then that’s fine with me, too. But we like to come down and have a good time, and I guess people can just relate to wanting to have a good time. I’m definitely all about that: having a good time. Having fun’s pretty cool. It’s a lot more fun than not having fun. e: You’re known for putting on quite a performance at your live shows. Is there any forethought that goes into each night, or is it all spontaneous? BH: I definitely need to make sure I know where the stage is ... and make it there. You know, that’s a big part of it. So, yeah, there is some forethought to it. Need to know where the stage is. Make it there. And then a lot of other technical stuff like that. e: Fred Champion from CD Alley and Wilmington band Glow In The Dark Scars says that you’re quite the ladies man. Is there any truth to that? BH: Well, I don’t know who wouldn’t like to think of themselves that way. But I guess when some other guy thinks of you like that, it’s not as cool [as] if a girl did. I mean, if
16 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
by: Adrian Varnam
Benji Hughes with Glow in the Dark Scars Soapbox, upstairs 255 N. Front Street December 31st; 9pm Tickets: $12
you were telling me that a girl said that I was quite a ladies man, that’d be a lot better than Fred. It’s a niceenough compliment.I think Fred’s a cool guy. But like I said, it’d be nice to hear that from a girl instead of through a chain of dudes. e: For those who haven’t been to a Benji Hughes show, what can they expect on New Year’s Eve? BH: We’re gonna come and play some music, and it’s gonna be awesome. We’re gonna totally put on a great show. I’d say that they could expect to have an awesome time.
THE YEAR WE MAKE CONTACT: Ring in 2010 with Benji Hughes, his immaculate band and Glow in the Dark Scars at Soapbox! Kiss 2009 goodbye with one helluva show!
e: Even with all the competition for partygoers that night? BH: Isn’t spice of life the variety of life, or something like that?
time, you know. [In a foreign accent:] I love this country. And I’m gonna have great New Year’s.
e: Any New Year’s resolutions you’d like to announce ahead of time in preparation for your show? BH: Resolutions? I really don’t know what the traditions are down there, man. I’m from another country.
e: Thanks for your time, Benji. Good luck with the tour. BH: Thanks for looking into the whole scenario. And if you need a hookup for the guest list, you let me know, but that’s contingent on you making me sound pretty cool. Make me sound rad. You do a smear article, or whatever you call it, a smut campaign about whatever kind of Hollywood chanteuse I’ve been running around with, then the deal’s off.
e: What country is that? BH: I’d rather not talk about that right now. I’m just looking forward to having a good
Benji Hughes, sans chanteuses, plays New Year’s Eve with Glow In the Dark Scars. Doors open at 9pm and tickets are $12.
e: Are you the spice of life? BH: I think it’s variety, but “Variety” is not my nickname. I’m not a Prince protégé.
a preview of tunes all over town this week
djBe eXTReMe KARAOKe —Wild Wing Cafe, 1331 Military Cutoff Road; 256-3838 Open Mic nighT —Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223 clAssy KARAOKe wiTh MAndy clAyTOn —Katy’s, 1054 South College Road; 395-6204 dj jeph cAulTeR —Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 dj —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Boulevard; 599-3366 Open Mic nighT wiTh gARy Allen —Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 jeReMy nORRis And TOMMy
BROTheRs —Reel Cafe, 100 South Front St.; 251-1832 dj p. FunK —Fibber McGee’s, 1610 Pavilion Pl; 509-1551 live Music —16 Taps, 127 Princess St.; 251-1616 piAnO shOw —Rum Runners, 21 North Front St.; 815-3846 live Music —The Whiskey, 1 South Front St.; 763-3088 live Music —Bottega Gallery, 208 North Front St.; 763-3737 KARAOKe wiTh dj BiKeR ROB —Beach House Bar ‘n’ Grill, 7219 Market St.; 689-7219 eRic And cARey B. —El Zarrape Cantina, 103 Lake Park Boulevard; 458-5255
KARAOKe w/ dj uRBAn —Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301 KARAOKe wiTh BOB clAyTOn —Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Drive; 792-6880 The FusTics —Hell’s Kitchen, 118 Princess St.; 763-4133
THUrSDAY, DEcEmbEr 31
phOTO By lAuRen sieRs
WEDNESDAY, DEcEmbEr 30
IN THE WAKE OF GIANTS plays the Juggling Gypsy on Sunday, January 3rd. Check ‘em out first at www.myspace.com/inthewakeofgiants.
117 Grace St. Downtown 910-763-3456
dj be karaoke thurs 12.24
christmas eve closing early.
closed for the holiday.
Photo... Scott Sain of Plane jane
,ANDFALL #ENTER s 1331 Military Cutoff Rd
Downtown Wilmington’s Authentic Hookah Spot
LIVE BELLY DANCING Every Friday and Saturday 10pm - 12am
All-natural homemade fruit tobacco TRY ONE OF OUR SIGNATURE MIXES www.arabiannightshookahcafe.com
serving full food menu
6am-10pm 7 dAYs A WeeK BAR OPEN ‘TIL 2am Monday-Friday Working Men’s Lunch under $6 bucks
FRIDAY, JANUARY 1
10:00:00 PM - 12:00:00 AM FRIDAY, JANUARY 8
ten toes up 10:00:00 PM - 12:00:00 AM
KARAOKe —Yosake Sushi Lounge, 31 South Front St.; 763-3172 KARAOKe wiTh jAsOn jAcKsOn —Wrightsville Grille, 6766 Wrightsville Avenue; 509-9839 live Music —16 Taps, 127 Princess St.; 251-1616 dj dOn’T sTOp —Slick and Reds, 2501 South College Road; 798-5355
LIVE MUSIC Gabby’s Lounge Fri., January 1
L SHAPE DUO 8-11PM
Sat., January 2
MIKE O’DONNELL 8-11PM
Fri., January 8
Sat., January 9
JOHN MIELCARSKI 8-11PM 877-330-5050 910-256-2231 wrightsville.sunspreeresorts.com
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 17
DJ Compose —Port City Pub, 121 Grace St.; 251-3791 DJ sCooter Fresh —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 KaraoKe Kong —Orton Pool Room, 133 North Front St.; 343-8878 DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 KaraoKe with BoB Clayton —Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Dr.; 792-6880 live aCoustiC —Beach House Bar ‘n’ Grill, 7219 Market St.; 689-7219 guitarist perry smith —Caffe Phoenix, 9 S Front St.; 343-1395 Classy KaraoKe with manDy Clayton —Remedies, Market St.; 392-8001 DJ stretCh —Trebenzio’s, 141 N. Front St.; 815-3301 Family KaraoKe —Alfie’s, 2528 Castle Hayne Road; 251-5707 BenJi hughes, glow in the DarK sCars
—Soapbox Upstairs, 255 N. Front St.; 251-8500 new year’s eve party —Ronnie’s Place, 6745-B Market St.; 228-8056 southern FrieD —Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 new year’s Bash with l shape lot —Hell’s Kitchen, 118 Princess St.; 763-4133 mighty mCFly —Wild Wing Cafe, 1331 Military Cutoff Road; 256-3838 new year’s eve party: lamping shaDes, smooth op —Palm Room, 11 East Salisbury St.; 503-3040 Jamin, Bimini anD hope —Bottega Gallery, 208 North Front St.; 763-3737 new year’s Bash —Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 hip-hop night —Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301 live musiC —Front St. Brewery, 9 N. Front St.; 251-1935
JUNCTION PUB AND BILLIARDS
Dance Club & Bar
6745 B Market St., 910-228-8056 OPEN: M-TH 3p-2a, F-SAT 12p-2a, SUN 12p-12a
TUESDAYS Service Industry Night • $3 Well Drinks WEDNESDAYS Bike Night w/Chris Bellamy NO COVER $ 1.50 Bud Light Cans $ 2 All Domestic Bottles FRIDAYS
1/8: MACHINE GUN 1/15: SOUL POWER POSSE (formerly of Painted Man) 1/22: JET 22 1/29: LETHAL INJECTION SATURDAYS Ladies Night w/DJ Long Island Ice Teas $4 SUNDAYS COME WATCH NFL FOOTBALL Bloody Mary’s $4 / Domestics $2 /&8:&"34&7&#"4) WITH DJ, PARTY FAVORS & CHAMPAGNE TOAST! Bring in the new year with us! Available for Private Parties Owned by Ronnie Moore formerly of Ronnies Middlesound Inn
5216 Carolina Beach Road MONDAY MADNESS: Domestic Pints: $225 Well Vodka Drinks: $350 FREE POOL AFTER MIDNIGHT TASTY TUESDAYS: CALL NIGHT All call liquors: $400 Drinks or Shots WET WEDNESDAYS: Smirnoff Flavor Liquors $400 Drinks or Shots LATE NIGHT!!! Domestic Light Beer $225
(Bud Light, Miller Light, Natural, Coors Light)
THIRSTY THURSDAYS: 22 Oz. Domestic Beers $400 FINALLY FRIDAYS: Cream Drinks $450 Blue Moon Draft $325 SATURDAYS: Corona & Corona Lts $250 Cuervo Silver Shots $300 Dox Equix Draft $300 POOL HAPPY HOURS 3pm-6pm $5 per player SUNDAYS: Service Employees Night Jager Shots $325 Jager Bombs $425 Coors Light Bottles $225 FREE POOL AFTER 10pm Every Mon-Wed-Fri Happy Hour Pool! FREE POOL from 3-5pm!
18 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
new year’s eve party: Fire anD Drum Jam —Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223 new year’s eve Bash with BiBis ellison anD the spare Change BanD —The Whiskey, 1 South Front St.; 763-3088 new year’s eve party: open miC with Jeremy norris —Katy’s, 1054 South College Road; 395-6204
friDAY, jAnuArY 1 KaraoKe with BoB Clayton —Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Dr.; 792-6880 Classy KaraoKe with manDy Clayton —Katy’s, 1054 S. College Rd; 395-6204 DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 DJ —Yosake Sushi Lounge, 31 South Front St.; 763-3172 live musiC —Port City Pub, 121 Grace St.; 251-3791
Every Saturday, Sunday and Monday $3.50 25oz. Draft Special .0/%": $ 5.99 Cheeseburger & Fries All Day 56&4%": Double Lunch Punch from 11am - 3pm 8&%/&4%": 10 Boneless Wings & Domestic Draft for $ 5.99 All Day or 10 Boneless Wings, Curly Fries & Dressing for $ 5.99 All Day 5)634%": $2.50 Wells
5112 Market Street (910) 791-0799
DJ will Clayton —Beach House Bar ‘n’ Grill, 7219 Market St.; 689-7219 DJ time —Fibber McGee’s, 1610 Pavilion Pl; 509-1551 latino night with DJ —Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 live musiC, DJ —The Sandbar, 417 South College Road; 791-6080 DJ stretCh —Trebenzio’s, 141 N. Front St.; 815-3301 roBBie Berry —Mexican Viejo Bar and Grill, 2013 Olde Regent Way, Leland; 371-1731 DJ Big Kahuna —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 DJ sCooter Fresh —Rox, 208 Market St.; 343-0402 First FriDay guitar Jam session —The Smudged Pot, 5032 Wrightsville Avenue; 452-2920 l shape Duo —Holiday Inn Resort, 1706 N. Lumina Avenue; 256-2231
Tuesday & Wednesday Martini Madness $2 Martinis Music by DJ TiMe Thursday ILM Electrotheque $2 Shots Music by GUeiCe & DST Friday & Saturday Discotheque $4 infused Vodkas Music by DJ DUSTiN CooK Sunday Open Mic $3 Drafts MUSiC BY YoU (instruments provided) 23 N. FroNt St. DowNtowN wilmiNgtoN
Donna merritt —Costello’s Piano Bar, 211 Princess St.; 362-9666 sKippy sKip —Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223 emBraCing gooDBye —Lucky’s, 2505 South College Road; 792-1812 melvin anD sayer —Romanelli’s, Leland; 383-1885 piano show —Rum Runners, 21 N. Front St.; 815-3846 DJ mitCh —Odessa, 23 N. Front St.; 251-8814 FriDay night Follies —Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301 DJ —Level 5/City Stage, 21 N. Front St.; 342-0872 KaraoKe Kong —Slick and Reds, 2501 S. College Rd; 798-5355 DJ suspenCe —Hell’s Kitchen, 118 Princess St.; 763-4133
1/2 priced select apppetizers m-f 4-7pm MONDAY $10 Bud/Light Buckets $4 Jack Daniels • $3 Capt. Morgan TUESDAY $1 Tacos 4-7pm • $3 sauza $15 margarita pitchers $3 Mexican Beers $5 Top Shelf Tequila • $7 Patron WEDNESDAY $3 Pints (10 Drafts) $5 Jager Bombs • $2 wells THURSDAY Mug Night $2 Domestic Drafts w/HK MUG $5 Bombers • $4 Jim Beam $3 pinnacle flavored vodkas $3.50 MicroBrews FRIDAY $3 Select Draft $4 Fire Fly Shooters $5 Red Bull Vodka SATURDAY $2.50 Miller Lt or Yuengling Draft $8 Pitcher • $3 Kamikaze $4 Well Drinks SUNDAY $2.50 Bud/Light Draft $8 Pitcher • $5 Crown Royal $4 Bloody Mary
CATCH ALL THE ACTION WITH NFL SUNDAY TICKET ON 10 HDTVs and HD big screen Your Team - Every Game, Every Week 118 Princess St • (910)763-4133
SAturDAY, jAnuArY 2 DJ —Ronnie’s Place, 6745-B Market St.; 228-8056 KaraoKe with val —Katy’s, 1054 South College Road; 395-6204 live musiC —Port City Pub, 121 Grace St.; 251-3791 DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 live musiC —The Sandbar, 417 South College Road; 791-6080 guitarist perry smith —Caffe Phoenix, 9 S Front St.; 343-1395 salsa with DJ lalo —Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 Classy KaraoKe with manDy Clayton —Remedies, Market St.; 392-8001 DJ —Yosake Sushi Lounge, 31 South Front St.; 763-3172 KaraoKe with BoB Clayton —Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Dr.; 792-6880
Sunday: $4 Bloody Marys $4 MiMosas
MOnday: $2 yuengling Pints $3 ruM HigHBalls
TueSday: $3 House HigHBalls
WedneSday: $10 doMestic Buckets
ThurSday: $3.50 Margaritas $2 corona & corona ligHt
FrIday: $3.50 lit’s
SaTurday: $2 coors ligHt $2.50 kaMikazis 12 Dock St., • 910-762-2827 Downtown Wilmington
DJ stretch; liVe Jam with Benny hill —Trebenzio’s, 141 N. Front St.; 815-3301 DJ —Yosake Sushi Lounge, 31 South Front St.; 763-3172 hiP-hoP DJ —Red Dogs, 5 N. Lumina Avenue, Wrightsville Beach; 256-2776 St.; 251-3791 miKe o’Donnell —Holiday Inn Resort, 1706 N. Lumina Avenue; 256-2231
DJ foxxy —Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301 tom noonan, Jane houseal —Costello’s Piano Bar, 211 Princess St.; 362-9666 first saturDay Blues Jam —Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 the orGanix —Hell’s Kitchen, 118 Princess St.; 763-4133 DJ —Level 5/City Stage, 21 N. Front St.; 342-0872
SuNDay, jaNuary 3
courtesy of artist
Piano show —Rum Runners, 21 N. Front St.; 815-3846 DJ eDie —Odessa, 23 N. Front St.; 251-8814 DJ P. money —Rox, 208 Market St.; 343-0402 DJ will clayton —Beach House Bar ‘n’ Grill, 7219 Market St.; 689-7219 DJ time —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 will reVo —Francesco’s, 839 South Kerr Avenue; 793-5656
DON’T MISS Jane Houseal (above) along with Tom Noonan at Costello’s Piano Bar, Saturday the 2nd.
Jam with Benny hill —Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 DJ BiG Kahuna —The Sandbar, 417 South College Road; 791-6080 classy KaraoKe with manDy clayton —The Toolbox, 2325 Burnette Blvd.; 343-6988 DJ P. money —Rox, 208 Market St.; 343-0402
DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 flutist niKKi wisniosKi —Caffe Phoenix, 9 S Front St.; 343-1395 DJBe extreme KaraoKe —The Whiskey, 1 South Front St.; 763-3088 DJ BiG Kahuna —Rum Runners, 21 N. Front St.; 815-3846 sunDay niGht feVer —Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301 Galen on Guitar (Brunch) —Courtyard Marriott, 100 Charlotte Avenue, Carolina Beach; (800) 321-2211 Dale “fully automatic sounD machine” DJs —Bottega Gallery, 208 North Front St.; 763-3737 in the waKe of Giants —Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223
MONDay, jaNuary 4 oPen mic niGht —16 Taps, 127 Princess St.; 251-1616 DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366
WE ARE A 100% SMOKE FREE RESTAURANT AND BAR Monday MNF All Pizzas $5 in the bar after 6 22oz Domestic Draft Kona Longboard Bottles $250 White Russians$4 Tuesday Live Jazz in the Bar Half Price Bottles of Wine Absolut Dream $5 22oz Yendgling Draft $2 Pacifico $2.50 Wednesday Corona\Corona Light $250 Margarita\Peach Margaritas $4 10 oz domestic draft $1 Thursday Gran Martinis $7 • Red Stripe $250 Friday Cosmos $4 • 007 $350 saTurday Baybreeze\Seabreeze $4 22oz Blue Moon Draft $3 ( Live Music Every Weekend) sunday 16oz Domestic Draft $150 Bloody Marys $4 Mojitos $3 • Appletinis $3 5564 Carolina Beach Rd 452-1212
1¢ fibbers golden lager 50¢ yuengling $ 1 guinness $ 3 royal flush $ 3 soco and limes DJ PFUNK DBMMUPQMBO ZPVSGSFFQSJWBUF QBSUZUPEBZ 1610 Pavilion Place 910.509.1551
(Bud Light, Miller Light, Natural, Coors Light)
THIRSTY THURSDAYS: Import Beers $300 (Red Stripe, Heineken, New Castle)
FINALLY FRIDAYS: Cream Drinks $450 Blue Moon Draft $325 SATURDAYS: Corona $250 Cuervo Silver Shots $300 POOL HAPPY HOURS 3pm-6pm $5 per player SUNDAYS: Service Employees Night Bloody Marys $300 Jager Shots $325 Jager Bombs $425 Coors Light Bottles $225 FREE POOL AFTER 10pm
TueSDay, jaNuary 5 DJ —Shanty’s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 KaraoKe —Yosake Sushi Lounge, 31 South Front St.; 763-3172
100 S. Front St. Downtown 251-1832
RACK ‘EM PUB 415 South College Road MONDAY MADNESS: Domestic Pints: $225 Miller Light, Yuengling: $350 Well Vodka Drinks: $350 FREE POOL AFTER MIDNIGHT TASTY TUESDAYS: CALL NIGHT All call liquors: $400 WET WEDNESDAYS: Smirnoff Flavor Liquors $400 Drinks LATE NIGHT!!! Domestic Light Beer $225
DJ BiG Kahuna —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 oPen mic niGht —Port City Pub, 121 Grace St.; 251-3791 DJ P. funK —The Sandbar, 417 South College Road; 791-6080 oPen mic with ViVa —El Zarrape Cantina, 103 Lake Park Blvd.; 458-5255 DJ richtermeister —Wild Wing Cafe, 1331 Military Cutoff Road; 256-3838 KaraoKe —Level 5/City Stage, 21 N. Front St.; 342-0872 DJ BiG Kahuna —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 mystery liVe music —Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223
.0/%": $2.50 Budweiser Draft $4.00 Well Liquor FROM 4 UNTIL CLOSE $.50 Wings Buffalo, BBQ, or Teriyaki 56&4%": $2.50 Miller Lite Draft, $4.00 Hurricanes FROM 4 UNTIL CLOSE $6 Buffalo Shrimp or Chicken Tenders 8&%/&4%": $2.50 Yuengling Draft, $2.50 Domestic Bottles FROM 4 UNTIL CLOSE $2 Sliders 5)634%": $3.00 Coronas, $4.00 Margaritas FROM 4 UNTIL CLOSE $5 Cajun Shrimp or Fish Tacos '3*%": $3.00 Select Pint 4"563%": $5.50 Cosmos, Dirty Martinis or Apple Martinis 46/%": $5 Bloody Marys Half Priced Appetizers After 9:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
.0/%": 1/2 PRICE APPS. 4-6PM $2 Budweiser $2.25 Heineken $3 Gin & Tonic Live music w/ JEREMY NORRIS AND FRIENDS MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL TAILGATE PARTY 25¢ Wings / $5 Sausage and Kraut $4 Tailgate Burgers $4 BBQ Plate PITCHERS OF YUENGLING OR MICH ULTRA $7 PITCHERS OF BLUE MOON OR FAT TIRE $8.50 56&4%": 1/2 PRICE APPS. 4-6PM $2 White Wolf $2.50 Redstripe $3.50 Wells 35¢ Wings at 8pm Live music w/ ROB RONNER 8&%/&4%": 1/2 PRICE APPS. 4-6PM Live music w/ JEREMY NORRIS / TOMMY BROTHERS $2.50 Blue Moons • $2.50 Corona/Corona Light 1/2 Priced Wine Bottles 5)634%": $2.00 Coors Light • $2.50 White Wolf Draft Doors open @6pm $15 cover Limited menu Live music from MIKE O’DONNELL 2 DJ’s, 1 band, food and drink specials. Why go anywhere else? '3*%": LIVE MUSIC IN THE COURTYARD $3 Landshark • $3 Kamikaze • $5 Bombs 4"563%": LIVE MUSIC IN THE COURTYARD Rooftop open by 6pm Dance floor open by 10pm 46/%": Live music w/ L SHAPE LOT 3-7 / MEDUSA STONE 8-12 $5 Tommy Bahama Mojitos $2.75 Corona $3.50 Bloody Mary’s • $3 Mimosas ROOFTOP KARAOKE
liVe music —Henry’s, 2806 Independence Blvd.; 793-2929 caPe fear Blues Jam —Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 liVe acoustic —Wild Wing Cafe, 1331 Military Cutoff Road; 256-3838 DJ DouBleclicK —The Sandbar, 417 South College Road; 791-6080 shaG DJ —Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 raDio hayes anD echoPoint21 —Goat and Compass, 710 N. 4th St.; 772-1400 DJ time —The Rhino Club, 125 Market St.; 762-2206 KaraoKe —16 Taps, 127 Princess St.; 251-1616 classy KaraoKe with manDy clayton —Ultra Classics Pool and Bar, North Hampstead KaraoKe with DJ BiKer roB —Katy’s, 1054 South College Road; 395-6204
5001 Market Street (attached to the Ramada Inn)
@7:30 with Brad & Dancing with DJ
Lee Pearson $2 DOMESTic BOTTLES WEDNESDAYS college Night with DJ JEPH c DEc. 16: JIM QUICK 8:30 $1 DOMESTic BOTTLES $3 JAGER BOMBS THURSDAY LADiES NiGHT-1/2 PRicE WiNE & $5 MARTiNi LiST - $2 DOMESTic FRIDAYS ARGENTiNE TANGO LESSONS WITH INSTRUCTION at 7:30 and
SALSA LESSONS at 9:30 with live DJ $2 Tequilla - $3 Corona - $4 Margarita’s
SATURDAY SALSA WiTH DJ LALO DEcEMBER 31
NEW YEAR’S EVE BASH
Champagne Toast at midnight Private Parties are available for booking 791-7595
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 19
WEDNESDAy, jANUARy 6
open Mic nigHt WitH gary allen â€”Rusty Nail, 1310 South 5th Avenue; 251-1888 JereMy norriS and toMMy BrotHerS â€”Reel Cafe, 100 South Front St.; 251-1832 piano SHoW â€”Rum Runners, 21 N. Front St.; 815-3846 dJ JepH caulter â€”Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 eric and carey B. â€”El Zarrape Cantina, 103 Lake Park Blvd.; 458-5255 dJ â€”Shantyâ€™s Beach and Blues Club, 103 North Lake Park Blvd.; 599-3366 karaoke WitH dJ Biker roB â€”Beach House Bar â€˜nâ€™ Grill, 7219 Market St.; 689-7219
dJ JepH caulter â€”Carolina Lounge, 5001A Market St.; 791-7595 live MuSic â€”16 Taps, 127 Princess St.; 251-1616 karaoke W/ dJ urBan â€”Ibiza, 118 Market St.; 251-1301
karaoke WitH BoB clayton â€”Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Dr.; 792-6880 dJ p. Funk â€”Fibber McGeeâ€™s, 1610 Pavilion Pl; 509-1551
claSSy karaoke WitH Mandy clayton â€”Katyâ€™s, 1054 South College Road; 395-6204 dJBe eXtreMe karaoke â€”Wild Wing Cafe, 1331 Military Cutoff Road; 256-3838
open Mic nigHt â€”Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223 agent orange, all tore up, grande piStoleS, MonkeykniFeFigHt â€”Luckyâ€™s, 2505 South College Road; 792-1812
All entertainment must be turned in to encore by noon every Thursday for consideration in the weekly entertainment calendar. Venues are responsible for notifying encore of any changes, removals or additions to their weekly schedules.
Show Stoppers: Concerts around the region HOUSE OF BLUES 4640 HWy 17 S., Myrtle BeacH, Sc 843-272-3000 12/30: Chairmen of the Board 12/31: Nâ€™Tranze, Corey Smith, American Aquarium 1/2: Myrtle Beach Rocks Classic Rock featuring: Liquid Courage, Superswamp Heroes, Lucky 13, Chronic THE ORANGE PEEL 101 BiltMore avenue, aSHeville 828-225-5851 12/30-31: Toubab Krewe (right), State Radio 1/8: Steep Canyon Rangers, The
ALABAMA THEATRE 4750 HWy 17 SoutH, n. Myrtle BeacH, Sc 843-272-1111 Christmas show (through 1/2); see www. alabama-theatre.com for dates
AMOSâ€™ SOUTHEND 1423 SoutH tryon St., cHarlotte â€˘ 704-377-6874 1/8: Floydian Slip (Pink Floyd tribute)
LINCOLN THEATRE 126 e. caBarruS St., raleigH 919-821-4111 1/1: The Movement 1/2: Winter Metal Festival: Gollum, Widow, Here Lies..., Burn The Blood, Morose Vitality, Hypheystus, Devilâ€™s Alibi, Against Their Will, Cast The First Stone, Up
PRICES: 1/2 hour: $25 â€˘ 1 hour: $40 Includes foot bath in Chinese herbal tea!
?;@E7EE;A@ Expires: 1/31/2010
' :AGDE7EE;A@ Expires: 1/31/2010
bodywork also available!
11am-10pm â€˘ 7 days a week! 260 Racine Drive, Unit 5 â€˘ (910) 799-7188 20 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
704-522-6500 * * COMING SOON: 1/10: Winter Jam featuring: NewSong, Third Day, Newsboys, Tenth Avenue North, Fireflight, Sidewalk Prophets, Robert Pierre, Revive
pHoto By JaiMe pranSky
karaoke WitH BoB clayton â€”Midtown Seafood, 4106 Oleander Dr.; 792-6880 indie MuSic nigHt â€”Juggling Gypsy Cafe, 1612 Castle St.; 763-2223
GREENSBORO COLISEUM COMPLEX 1921 WeSt lee Street, greenSBoro 336-373-7400 12/31: Greensboro Symphony POPS: West End Mambo
* * COMING SOON: 1/21: Greensboro Symphony Masterworks Concert TWC ARENA 333 eaSt trade St. cHarlotte, nc
CATâ€™S CRADLE 300 e. Main St., carrBoro 919-967-9053 12/31: The Billy Price Band * * COMING SOON: 1/9: Abbey Road LIVE!
new yearâ€™s savings: GET 50% OFF OUR PHONES. ' + ,)*
After $70 mail-in rebate that comes as a VisaÂŽ debit card. Requires new 2-yr. agmt. and Smartphone Plan. $30 act. fee may apply.
After $50 mail-in rebate that comes as a Visa debit card. Requires 2-yr. agmt. and Premium Mobile Internet Plan. $30 act. fee may apply.
After $50 mail-in rebate that comes as a Visa debit card. Requires 2-yr. agmt. and Premium Mobile Internet Plan. $30 act. fee may apply.
' ( ))*
After $70 mail-in rebate that comes as a Visa debit card. Requires new 2-yr. agmt. and Smartphone Plan. $30 act. fee may apply.
! Things we want you to know: New two-year agreement (subject to early termination fee) and credit approval required. A $30 activation fee may apply. Regulatory Cost Recovery Fee applies; this is not a tax or government-required charge. Additional fees, taxes, terms, conditions and coverage areas apply and vary by plan, service and phone. Use of service constitutes acceptance of the terms of our Customer Service Agreement. See store for details or visit uscellular.com. Promotional Phone subject to change. U.S. Cellular Visa Debit Card issued by MetaBank pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. Allow 10â€“12 weeks for processing. Card does not have cash access and can be used at any merchant location that accepts Visa debit cards. Card valid for 120 days after issued. Premium Mobile Internet Plan is $19.95 per month. Smartphone Plans start at $24.95 per month. Application and data network usage charges may apply when accessing applications. BlackBerry, RIM, Research In Motion and related trademarks, names and logos are the property of Research In Motion Limited and are registered and/or used in the U.S. and countries around the world. Used under license from Research In Motion Limited. Kansas Customers: In areas in which U.S. Cellular receives support from the Federal Universal Service Fund, all reasonable requests for service must be met. Unresolved questions concerning services availability can be directed to the Kansas Corporation Commission Office of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection at 1-800-662-0027. Limited-time offer. Trademarks and trade names are the property of their respective owners. Mobile Broadband on 3G Network only available with select handsets. Users can expect an average download speed of 768Kbps and an average upload speed of 200Kbps. ÂŠ2009 U.S. Cellular.
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 21
New Year’s Eve
1701 Wrightsville Ave 910 343 5233 Mon-Sat, 12-9pm; Sunday, 1-6pm www.artfuelinc.com www.myspace.com/artfuel_inc Artfuel.inc is located at the corner of Wrightsville Ave and 17th st. Housed in an old gas station, we offer resident artists working in studios alongside a gallery space used to exhibit other artists work. We hope to connect artists with each other and offer many styles of work to fuel the public’s interest. Currently, Artfuel, Inc. will showcase Volume 22, a graffiti extravaganza, featuring Stevie Mack, Kid Mike, Mathew Curran, Camden Noir and Eye Dee. Live tagging will be done throughout the evening on a wall built specially for the event. All are welcome.
$2.00 Coors Light $2.50 White Wolf Draft Doors open @6pm $15 cover
limited menu Live music from MikE O’DONNELL 2 DJ’s, 1 band, food and drink specials. Why go anywhere else? 100 S Front St Downtown Wilmington 910-251-1832
332 Nutt St, The Cotton Exchange (910) 762-4207 Mon.-Sat., 10am-5:30pm; Sun., 12-4pm www.crescentmoonnc.com Keeping it local…Crescent Moon has partnered with Old Growth Riverwood on Castle Hayne Road to supply hand-made shelving crafted from reclaimed wood from The Cape Fear River for our new display area in the gift gallery. The new display area will be primarily dedicated to the promotion of local glass and metal artists at Crescent Moon. We now have ten local glass artists associated with us. Old Growth Riverwood reclaims lost pieces of history and transforms them into unique and beautiful
Wanna be on the gallery page? Call Shea Carver by Thursday, noon, at (910) 791-0688, ext 1004, to inquire about being included.
22 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
wood products for home or business. Old Growth Riverwood is committed to being environmentally responsible and does not cut down any living trees to produce their products. This project partnership speaks to a mutual philosophy, of buying and using hand-made and environmentally conscience work when possible. One reason we love our location within The Cotton Exchange is the reuse of the wonderful historic buildings that have been so much a part of the downtown area. Hours: Monday- Saturday 10am-5:30pm and Sundays 12pm-4pm. Crescent Moon is located in The Cotton Exchange where parking is free while shopping or dining. Follow us on twitter as CrescentMoonNC or become a fan on our Facebook page!
1319 Military Cutoff Rd. Landfall Center (910) 256-1105 Mon.-Fri.., 10am-6pm • Sat., 10am-4pm www.fastframeofwilmington.com FASTFRAME Gallery is pleased to present the Second Annual Fill the Cupboard Art Show: “Ordinary View, Extraordinary Vision,” November 13 through December 31, featuring Terry Rosenfelder’s sophisticated oils, M. Matteson Smith’s unique paper sculptures, and Sara Westermark’s original jewelry designs. Again this year, FASTFRAME cheerfully encourages and will be delighted to accept food and financial contributions to help several of our local food banks. Come meet the artists at the Opening Reception on Friday, November 13, from 5:00 until 7:30 p.m., with wine tasting by WineStyles and appetizers by The Sandwich Pail.
Hampstead Art Gallery
14712 Hwy. 17 N. • (910) 270-5180 Mon.-Sat. 11am-5pm, or by appt. Hampstead, NC “Beautiful; lots of variety.” “Love the place.” “Beautiful art work.” “Very nice.” “Art rocks your socks, and you know that.” These are just what a few customers had to say about Hampstead Art Gallery. Come and tell us what you think. Affordable prices on prints and originals. Local artists with various styles and taste are just excited about having the opportunity to share their work with all art lovers. Our artists offer different sizes from what we have on display and low rates on commissioned work. Christmas is very close, and a family portrait would be a great gift. Owner Charles Turner invites all artists and art lovers to just hang out in our new Artist Lounge any time. Look for our upcoming Expos and Open House. Hampstead Art Gallery is located in Hampstead on the corner of Factory Road next to CVS Pharmacy.
New Elements Gallery
216 N. Front St. • (919) 343-8997 Tues-Sat: 11am-5:30pm or by appointment www.newelementsgallery.com
New Elements Gallery’s 25th Annual Holiday Show is on display now through January 9, 2010. Always an eagerly anticipated event, the exhibition features one-of-a-kind fine art and craft by more than forty artists including Betty Brown, Warren Dennis, Donald Furst, Eric Lawing, Nancy Tuttle May, Bob Rankin, Sally Sutton and Michael Van Hout. Enjoy an amazing variety of original paintings, sculpture, ceramics, glass, jewelry and wood by regional and nationally recognized artists.
pattersonbehn art gallery
511 1/2 Castle Street (910) 251-8886 Tues.-Sat. 11am-5pm (Winter: closed Monday) www.pattersonbehn.com pattersonbehn picture framing & design has added an art gallery to their space, featuring several local artists. Currently on display are works by Bob Bryden, Michelle Connolly, Karen Paden Crouch, Virginia Wright-Frierson and Pam Toll. The gallery offers a large selection of works on paper in numerous media. In addition there are many different gift ideas, such as hand-gilded table-top frames and one-of-a-kind keepsake boxes. The gallery offers something for everybody.
Sunset River Marketplace
10283 Beach Dr., SW (NC 179). (910) 575-5999 • Mon.-Sat. 10am-5pm (Winter hours: closed Monday) www.sunsetrivermarketplace.com myspace.comsunsetrivermarketplace This eclectic, spacious gallery, located in the historic fishing village of Calabash, N.C., features fine arts and crafts by some of North and South Carolina’s most creative, successful artists. Almost every genre is represented here—oil, pastel and watercolor, clay and glass art, fiber art, turned wood, metal works, artisancrafted jewelry and more. Classes, workshops, pottery studio, custom framing, Creative Exchange lecture series and Coffee With the Author series are also offered on-site.
Wilmington Art Association Gallery
616B Castle St. (910) 343-4370 www.wilmington-art.org Have a happy and blessed holiday season and a great New Year from all the artists in the Wilmington Art Association! We invite all members and the general public to attend the Wilmington Art Association January Meeting on January 14th at 6:30 pm. We will be presenting up coming shows, classes, gallery events, schedule of off-site shows and all the benefits of being a WAA member. It is held at the Arboretum starting with the social at 6:30 followed by the meeting at 7pm. Join us for a great start to the New Year!
4 Great Conference Games + 1 Seahawk Hat = $73* (or $95 depending on seat location)
January 6 â€¢ GEORGIA STATE, 7pm
famiily fun pack $
5*$,&54 )05%0(4 %3*/,4 Good for
January 13 â€¢ OLD DOMINION, 7pm
February 3 â€¢ VCU, 7pm
February 13 â€¢ HOFSTRA, 7pm
6/$8TQPSUTDPNGPSNPSFJOGPSNBUJPO Donâ€™t forget to pick up your womenâ€™s basketball tickets for just $35 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 23
dining guide american Black Horn Bar & kitcHen
Enjoy an extensive selection of gourmet soups, salads, sandwiches and specialty Americana in this rustic chic setting. From the dry-rubbed and slowroasted Better Buffalo Wings to the hardwood smoked Duck Quesadilla, Black Horn offers unique twists on traditional foods. Always family friendly with smoke-free dining, a large arcade gaming area, 23 Hi-Def TV’s and Nintendo Wii. Live music every weekend. 7 days a week, 11am–2am. 15 Carolina Beach Avenue North, “the boardwalk,” Carolina Beach. www.blackhornbarandkitchen. com. (910) 458-5255.
Brixx Wood Fired Pizza A short drive from the beach, Brixx Wood Fired Pizza in Mayfaire Town Center is a fun, friendly neighborhood restaurant. Serving the best brick-oven pizzas around, Brixx also offers a fine selection of signature focaccia sandwiches, pastas, fresh salads and desserts. Stop in for a quick lunch, or kick back on the patio with one of 24 beers on tap or 14 wines by the glass. Brixx is also a latenight destination, serving 2-for-1 pizzas and appetizers after 10 p.m. Open until 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 p.m. on Sunday.6801 Main Street, Wilmington, NC 28405. 910-256-9677. www.brixxpizza.com
A sprawling two-story restaurant located on the Intracoastal Waterway, Bluewater offers spectacular panoramic views. Watch all types of boats cruise past your table, and relax to the sound of sail masts lightly touching at the nearby marina, all while enjoying the casual American menu. Dinner mainstays include baby back ribs, chargrilled steaks, fresh fish, and delicious homemade desserts. BluewaterDining.com. 4 Marina Street, Wrightsville Beach, NC . 910.256.8500
c.G. daWGs For great traditional New York style eats with Southern charm look no further than C.G. Dawgs. You will be drawn in by the aroma of fine beef franks served with witty banter and good natured delivery from the cleanest hot dog carts in Wilmington. Sabrett famous hot dogs and Italian sausages are the primary fare offered, with a myriad of condiments for all of your mid-day or late night cravings. You may find them daily at their new location on the boardwalk of Market and Water St. from 11am to 5pm. Saturdays at the farmers market. Thursday-Saturday nights they are on Market St. between Front and 2nd St. from 10pm to 3:00am. Then they finish the week off at Fibbers on Sunday nights until 3am. To busy to leave the office? Ask about their lunch time delivery service for downtown!!
tHe GeorGe on tHe riVerWalk Drop your anchor at The George on the RiverWalk, your destination for complete sense indulgence. Watch the historic Cape Fear River unfold before you while you enjoy the best in Southern Coastal Cuisine. The menu combines elegance,
creativity and diverse selection of steak, pasta, salad and fresh seafood, including the best Shrimp n’ Grits in town. Warm in the sun on the expansive outdoor deck sipping an exotic, colorful martini, or unwind at the spacious bar inside boasting extensive wine and martini lists along with weekday appetizer specials from 4:00pm-6:30pm. Don’t forget to try downtown’s best kept secret for Sunday Brunch from 11am-3pm. You are welcome to dock your boat at the only dock’n’dine restaurant downtown, grab a trolley, or enjoy our free, front door parking (ask for pass!) Lunch and Dinner Tues-Sunday. Why satisfy when you can indulge? Find the George on the RiverWalk at 128 South Water Street. 910-763-2052 or online at www.thegeorgeontheriverwalk.com
This former Dawson’s Creek stage set has been turned into a lively pub in the heart of Downtown Wilmington. Their extensive menu ranges from classics like a thick Angus burger or NY style reuben to lighter fare such as homemade soups, fresh salads, and vegetarian options. Whether meeting for a business lunch, lingering over dinner and drinks, or watching the game on the big screen, the atmosphere and friendly service will turn you into a regular. Open late 7 days a week, with a pool table, darts, weekly trivia, and live music on the weekends. Offers limited lunchtime delivery during the week and can accommodate large parties. M-Sat 11am until late, opens Sundays at noon. 118 Princess St, (910) 763-4133
A local favorite and must-see for visitors, Henry’s award-winning decor features beautifully hued stacked sandstone, a hand painted ceiling and a gorgeous 100-year-old Brunswick-style tiger oak bar. At dinner, modern American offerings include slow roasted prime rib, rotisserie chicken, signature crab cakes, and delectable seafood dishes. Lunch features include deli sandwiches made with fresh Boars Head cold-cuts, delicious salads, and fresh bread. Save room for the homemade strawberry shortcake! HenrysRestaurant.com. 2508 Independence Boulevard, Wilmington, NC. 910.793.2929.
HolidaY inn resort
The Verandah Café Restaurant located in this oceanfront resort is a wonderful find. This is the perfect place to enjoy a fresh Seafood & Steak dinner while dinning outside overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Chef Eric invites you to experience his daily specials in this magnificent setting. Open daily for Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. 256-2231 Wrightsville Beach
Kefi, founded in 1981 by a group of friends, has a long-standing tradition as a favorite local watering hole. This Wrightsville-Beach eatery is open at 6am for breakfast, offering everything from omelets and pancakes, to shrimp and grits. Take a break from the beach and visit Kefi’s, where their menu features a variety of salads and sandwiches. There is even a “working man’s lunch,” served Monday through Friday, all for under $6. At night Kefi comes
24 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
alive by serving dinner with a Southern flare. From the fried pickles appetizer to their the shrimp or oyster Po’boy to their nightly dinner specials, there is something that will make your taste buds sing. Then stick around for live music on Friday, Saturday and Sunday; nightly drink specials are offered. Go online at www.kefilive.com for more info and full music schedule. Open 6am-2am, seven days a week, with full ABC permits. Lunch deliveries available in the Wrightsville Beach area. Located at 2012 Eastwood Road, 910-256-3558.
tHe little diPPer
Wilmington’s favorite fondue restaurant! The Little Dipper specializes in unique fondue dishes with a global variety of cheeses, meats, seafood, vegetables, chocolates and fine wines. The warm and intimate dining room is a great place to enjoy a four-course meal, or indulge in appetizers and desserts outside on the back deck or in the bar while watching luminescent jellyfish. Open Tuesday-Sunday, serving dinner at 5pm. Reservations are appreciated for parties of any size. Located at the corner of Front and Orange in Downtown Wilmington. 138 South Front Street • (910) 251-0433
Pine ValleY Market
Pine Valley Market has reigned supreme in servicing the Wilmington community for years, securing encore’s Best-Of awards in catering, gourmet shop and butcher. Now, Kathy Webb and Christi Ferretti are expanding their talents into serving lunch in-house, so folks can enjoy their hearty, homemade meals in the quaint and cozy ambience of the market. Using the freshest ingredients of highest quality, diners can enjoy the best Philly Cheesesteak in Wilmington, along with numerous other sandwich varieties, from their Angus burger to classic Reuben, Italian sub to a grown-up banana and peanut butter sandwich that will take all diners back to childhood. Served among a soup du jour and salads, there is something for all palates. Take advantage of their take-home frozen meals for nights that are too hectic to cook, and don’t forget to pick up a great bottle of wine to go with it. Mon.-Fri. 10am-7pm; Sat. 9am-6pm; closed Sunday. 3520 S. College Road, (910) 350-FOOD.
Now a smoke-free restaurant, mellow out and relax in the comfortable atmosphere that Mellow Mushroom offers. From the giant psychadelic ‘shroom located in the bar area to the Cadillac hanging on the wall, this restaurant is far from ordinary. The open kitchen brings live entertainment as pizza dough flies in the air. Their hand-tossed, spring-water dough brings new meaning to pizzas and calzones—healthy!! With 20 drafts and an array of microbrews, domestic and import bottles, Mellow Mushroom has an extensive beer list and full bar. Also, check out their lunch specials and variety of sandwiches. Their menu also caters to everyone and offers many vegetarian dishes. Live jazz on Wednesdays. Hours: MonSat, 11am-10pm; Sun., 12pm-9pm. 4311 Oleander Drive, 452-3773.
stickY FinGers riB HoUse Sticky Fingers is known for the best authentic Memphis-style ribs, wings and barbecue in town. It’s no secret that slow, low-temperature smoking produces mouth-watering, tender ribs, chicken and pork. Sticky Fingers smokes everything right here in the restaurant and has received national praise for award-winning ribs. The restaurant was recently featured in Bon Appetit, Southern Living and Food and Wine, and had fantastic television exposure on CNBC’s “The Today Show,” and the Food Network. Locals voted Sticky Fingers “Best Ribs” in Wilmington. Sticky Fingers Catering has become an obvious choice for company picnics, office meetings or social gatherings for parties of 15 to 5,000 people. They offer both full service and simple drop-off options to meet anyone’s catering needs. 5044 Market Street, (910) 452-7427.
Trolly Stop Hot Dogs and Hamburgers are family owned with six locations. Since 1976 we specialize in homemade chili, slaw and sauces. Dogs include Smighfield (beef & pork), Southern Dog, Sabrett (all beef), Northern Dog, Carolina Packers Pork Dog (smoke sausage), Oscar Mayer 98% Fat Free Dogs (turkey) and Light Life Veggie Dog (soy). We also have a fresh cooked hamburger served any way you want. Locations are: 126 N. Front St. Open six days including Thurs., Fri., and Sat. night from 10pm-3am; 343-2999, 94 S. Lumina Ave, Wrightsville Beach, 256-1421; 4502 Fountain Dr., 452-3952. Open at 11am on Sat.; South Howe St. in Southport, 457-7017; 103A Cape Fear Blvd in Carolina Beach, 458-5778. Catering cart available all year from $300. 797-886
asian doUBle HaPPiness Double Happiness offers the Port City fine Asian dining at reasonable prices. We prepare flavorful dishes inspired by the cultural richness of Malaysia, Thailand and authentic China. We’re now serving traditional dim sum, and good health special vegetarian dishes, such as Soy Peking Ribs, homemade tofu and homemade Malaysian sponge cake. We are dedicated to branding the exotic flavors of fresh ingredients and a romantic spice in all of our cooking techniques. Our friendly staff is always willing to help customers, and we serve beer and wine for lunch and dinner. Banquet and tatami rooms are available for large parties. Open Monday through Saturday, 11am-10pm; and Sunday 3pm-10pm. 4403 Wrightsville Avenue; 910313-1088. www.doublehappinessrestaurant.com.
Craving expertly prepared Chinese food in an elegant atmosphere? Szechuan 132 Chinese Restaurant is your destination! Szechuan 132 has earned the reputation as one of the finest contemporary Chinese restaurants in the Port City. Tastefully decorated with an elegant atmosphere, with an exceptional ingenious menu has deemed
Szechuan 132 the best Chinese restaurant for years, hands down. 419 South College Road (in University Landing), 799-1426.
Hiro japanese steakHouse What better way to celebrate a special occasion or liven up a dinner out than to dine in a place where every meal is an exciting presentation. Knowing that a meal should be more than just great food, Hiro adds a taste of theatre and a amazing atmosphere to everyone’s dinning experience. Also serving sushi, Hiro surprises its guests with a new special roll every week and nightly drink specials to complement it. From 47pm enjoy half-priced nigiri and half-priced regular makimono. Nigiri makimono combos are only $7.50, while early-bird specials last from 4-6pm, where diners can choose two: shrimp, chicken or steak. Open Monday thru Thursday 4pm-10pm; Friday and Saturday 4pm-10:30pm; and Sunday 11am-10pm. Located at 222 Old Eastwood Road (910) 794-1570. Please visit the Web site at hirojapanesesteakhouse.com.
If you’re ready to experience the wonders of the Orient without having to leave Wilmington, join us at Indochine for a truly unique experience. Indochine brings the flavors of the Far East to the Port City, combining the best of Thai and Vietnamese cuisine in an atmosphere that will transport you and your taste buds. Relax in our elegantly decorated dining room, complete with antique Asian decor as well as contemporary artwork and music. Our diverse, friendly and efficient staff will serve you beautifully presented dishes full of enticing aromas and flavors. Be sure to try such signature items as the spicy and savory Roasted Duck with Red Curry, or the beautifully presented and delicious Shrimp and Scallops in a Nest. Be sure to save room for our world famous desert, the banana egg roll! We take pride in using only the freshest ingredients, and our extensive menu suits any taste. After dinner, enjoy specialty drinks by the koi pond in our Asian garden, or be entertained every Friday night with a Balinese dancer. Located at 7 Wayne Drive (beside the Ivy Cottage), 251-9229. Indochinewilmington.com
Located on the second floor of the historic Roudabush building in downtown Wilmington, Yo Sake features the best sushi along with a full pan-Asian menu served amid fabulous Tokyo vogue décor. Entrees include Sake Bombed Duck, Tea Rubbed Salmon and Grilled Beef Tenderloin. The bar boasts an extensive wine list including 16 sakes and fantastic specialty drinks like the Wilmington-famous Pomegranate Ginger Mojito. Don’t forget to try the Fresh Mango Cheesecake or the scrumptious Coconut Banana Ice Cream, and, if you ask nicely, they just might drop a scoop of the Lychee Sorbet into a glass of champagne for you. Open everyday 5pm-2am. Dinner served 5-11pm. Ask about our late night menu. Live entertainment nightly Tuesday -Saturday beginning at 10:30pm. 33 South Front Street, downtown Wilmington. (910) 763-3172. Visit us at www.yosake.com.
Jamaica’s Comfort Zone is Wilmington’s Authentic Caribbean Restaurant conveniently
located at 417 S. College Road in University Landing. We offer exquisite Caribbean cuisine to satisfy your taste buds, whether they are for spicy Jamaican jerk chicken, mellow flavors of our curry chicken, curry goat or our ox tail skillfully flavored by our Jamaican chefs. Come in and enjoy our many menu selections, our warm décor, smokefree atmosphere, excellent service and our smooth reggae music. Operating hours are: Sunday 3:00pm – 8:00pm; Wednesday – Saturday 11:45am – 9:00pm (Closed Monday and Tuesday). Jamaica’s Comfort Zone is family owned and operated. Check us out at www.jamaicascomfortzone.com or call us 910-399-2867.
french caprice Bistro
Wilmington’s finest French cuisine can be found at Caprice Bistro, a small informal neighborhood restaurant, serving hearty food in generous portions at affordable prices. Simple is the atmosphere in the bistro, as plain white plates and tables dressed in white paper make up the decor. However, the food is far from simple, as a combination of fresh ingredients and innovative preparation delight the taste buds with a plethora of unique appetizers, entrées and desserts. The service is fast, efficient and non-intrusive, and the ambience is friendly and unpretentious. After dinner, be sure to venture upstairs into their cozy and relaxing sofa bar for an after-dinner martini, or enjoy your meal there, as a light-fare and full menus are served. Art is always on display in the sofa bar, so be sure to inquire frequently about their artist show receptions. Voted “Best French Restaurant” three years in a row! 10 Market Street, downtown Wilmington, 815-0810.
italian antonios piZZa and pasta
Antonio’s Pizza and Pasta, simply known as Antonio’s, is anything but simple. From scrumptious appetizers to signature pizza to some of the best traditional Italian pasta dishes in town, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a cozy dinner for two or bring the whole family in for pizza and fun. Offering beer and wine at their Monkey Junction and Porter’s Neck location and live music Friday and Saturday nights with all ABC permits at their Leland location, Antonio’s has thought of everything for you to enjoy your dining experience with them. Monkey Junction across from Super Walmart off South College Road (910) 792-0000, Porter’s Neck Shopping Center next to Kiva Grill off Market Street (910) 686-7774, Cross Creek Commons across from Magnolia Greens (910) 383-0033. www.antoniospizzaandpasta.com
A marvel of architecture with an open display kitchen that adds to the stunning ambiance of the dining room. Eddie Romanelli’s offers lunch (Oleander Dr), dinner and late night menu (Oleaner Dr). The diverse menu is casual American with Italian influences, featuring favorites such as 16oz. Marinated Rib Eye Steak, Stuffed Pork Chop, Mama Romanelli’s Lasagna, Shrimp and Crabmeat Cannelloni, unique California-style pizza and more. RomanellisRestaurant.com. 5400 Oleander Drive, Wilmington. 910.799.7000 and 503 Olde Waterford Way, Leland. 910.383.1885
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 25
GiorGio’s italian restaurant
Giorgio’s is a locally owned, one-of-a-kind restaurant. Offering age-old traditions and timeless recipes, perfection is accomplished by combining the perfect cuisine and atmosphere for a dining experience that is not soon forgotten. With over 50 years of cooking experience under one roof, the smells of old-fashioned home cooking float through the air creating that comforting feeling of home-away-from-home! From old world style dishes to modern day creations, the menu showcases multiple flavors that will tempt the palate of the most discriminating connoisseurs. A Monkey Junction landmark for over 12 years! www.giorgios-restaurant.com. 5226 S College Rd.,Wilmington 910-790-9954.
slice of life
“Slice” has become a home away from home for tourists and locals alike. Our menu includes salads, tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos, homemade soups, subs and, of course, pizza. We only serve the freshest and highest-quality ingredients in all of our food, and our dough is made daily with purified water. We have the largest tequila selection in Wilmington. Voted “Best Pizza” and “Best Late Night Eatery.” Stop by for lunch dinner, or a late-night treat, open from 11:30am until 3am, seven days a week, 365 days a year, all ABC permits. 122 Market Street between Second and Front, downtown Wilmington. 251-9444. Visit our 2nd location at 1437 Military Cutoff rd., next to PT’s! 256-2229 www.grabslice.com.
Mediterranean naGila: tHe KosHer Moroccan cafe
Nagila, The Moroccan Café, is a quaint, neighborhood dining place, located on Wrightsville Avenue, near Canady’s Sporting Goods. Internationally recognized Chef Shai Shalit brings the finest dining experience and superb eclectic tastes rarely experienced even in those larger metropolitan cities. Stop by for lunch and try his homemade pita bread, prepared fresh daily, stuffed with any filling of your choice. With lunch specials starting at just $5.95 and dinner specials start-
VOTE NOW! www.encorepuB.coM
ing at $9.95, Nagila is affordable and authentic, serving the most fantastic tahini and hummus, as well as chicken Moroccan soup that will warm your stomach. For the less adventurous guests, Shai can prepare an unbelievable steak or a pita hamburger—one not easily forgotten. Finish your dinner with a delicious piece of Baklava and a wonderful Turkish coffee or tea. Come on in and try out Wilmington’s newest, relaxing surroundings—that of a Moroccan oasis. Reservations: 233-1251 or 798-9940. Open Sunday-Thursday; Lunch 11am4pm; Dinner 4pm-until. Open for lunch on Friday at 11am - call for closing time. Closed Friday evening to Saturday evening for shabbos. Open Saturday night - call for times.
organic loVeY’s MarKet
Lovey’s Market is a true blessing for shoppers looking for natural and organic groceries, or just a great place to meet friends for a quick, delicious, and totally fresh snack. Whether they are in the mood for a veggie burger, a bean burrito or a chicken Caesar wrap, shoppers will find a large selection of nutritious meals on the a la carte café menu at Lovey’s. The food bar—which has cold salads and hot selections that can be eaten in the café seating or boxed for take-out—can be enjoyed all day long, while the juice bar offers a wide variety of juices and smoothies made with organic fruits and vegetables. Specializing in bulk sales of produce, grains, flours, beans and spices at affordable prices, Lovey‘s also carries grass-fed and free-range meats and poultry. Wheat-free, gluten-free, products are in stock regularly, as are vegan and vegetarian groceries and wholesome pet foods. For anything shoppers want that is not in stock, Lovey‘s will be happy to find it. Stop by Lovey’s Market Monday through Friday, 9am to 7pm; Saturday, 9am to 6pm; and on Sundays, 10am to 6pm. Café hours: Monday-Friday, 11am–6pm; Saturday & Sunday, 10am-6pm. Located at 1319 Military Cutoff Road; 910-5090331. Online at www.loveysmarket.com.
tidal creeK co-op
Tidal Creek Deli offers a wide array of exceptional and unusual organic foods, all of which taste as good as they are for you. The salad bar and hot bar incorporate flavors from around the world; each item is prepared by hand using only fresh and local ingredients. The chefs are constantly experimenting to create new and exciting dishes. Choose from made to order smoothies with almond butter and hemp milk, salads with locally grown greens or, special order a wedding cake made from scratch to your specifications. Whatever your tastes, Tidal Creek Deli is a place to rejuvenate the mind and body while enjoying the company of a friendly and relaxed organic community.
seafood docK street oYster Bar
Voted Best Oysters for over 10 years by encore readers, you know what you can find at Dock Street Oyster Bar. But we have a lot more than oysters! Featuring a full menu of seafood, pasta, and chicken dishes from $4.95-$25.95, there’s something for everyone at Dock Street. You’ll have a great time eating in our “BohemianChic” atmosphere, where you’ll feel just as comfortable in flip flops as you would in a busi-
26 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
ness suit. Smoke Free! Located at 12 Dock St in downtown Wilmington. Open for lunch and dinner, 7 days a week. 762-2827 www.dockstreetoysterbar.net.
east at tHe BlocKade runner Hotel
The Blockade Runner offers an array of seasonal seafood specials, certified Angus beef, lobster menu on Friday evening plus a spectacular Sunday brunch. Romantic al fresco dining is available on our dinner deck located in the center of a lush garden overlooking the ocean far away from the traffic and noise. We offer live entertainment on Saturday evening and Sunday brunch. Our smoke free lounge is eco-friendly and offers light fare nightly. 275 Waynick Blvd. Wrightsville Beach. 910-256-2251.
Proving that excellent seafood isn’t just for the eateries at Wrightsville Beach, Hieronymus Seafood is the stop for midtown Wilmington seafood lovers. In business for 27 years strong, Hieronymus has made a name for itself by consistently providing excellent service and the freshest of the fresh in oceanic cuisine. Complete with a full-service bar and a fireside oyster bar, it’s the place to be if you are seeking top-quality attributes in atmosphere, presentation, flavor and ingenuity. Signature dishes include Oysters Hieronymus and the Scallops Fra Diavlo. Hieronymus has all ABC permits and also provides catering. Voted “Best Seafood” in 2007. 5035 Market Street; 392-6313.
catcH Modern seafood
When Wilmingtonians think of fresh, flavorful seafood, they flock to Catch. Couples enjoy wine and hors d’oeuvres at the bar, professionals meet for business meetings and locals come for their favorites. The understated décor and friendly service create a warm and relaxing atmosphere. In this quaint bistro, Catch serves New American seafood with Asian influences. Customers enjoy unique flavors and modern creations, matched with the best local seafood and organic produce in the Cape Fear. Some seasonal offerings include soft-shell crabs, grouper nuggets, summer flounder, N.C. shrimp and Carolina catfish. House specialties range from broiled miso-glazed wild salmon to crispy fried oyster platters. No reservations accepted. Open Mon-Fri., 11am – 2pm for lunch and now open for dinner Wed-Fri. only from 5:30pm – 9pm (BYOB). 215 Princess Street, downtown Wilmington. Catch is chef-owned and -operated. (910) 762-2841 or www.catchwilmingtonnc.com.
Located next to the Golden Sands hotel in Carolina Beach, the Ocean Grill offers three distinct dining experiences: a spacious dining room with wonderful views of the Atlantic Ocean, a patio bar in the covered patio area, and a open-air Tiki Bar on the pier. You will find a full menu inside, and appetizers, sandwiches and a full selection of beverages on the Tiki Bar menu. Serving lunch on Saturday and Sunday, and brunch on Sundays from 10am-2pm. Lunch 7 days a week beginning May 22nd. Live music calendar: www.oceangrill.us. Tiki Bar open at 11am 7 days a week. 1211 S. Lake Park Blvd, Carolina Beach; (910) 458-2000.
Breathtaking panoramic views. Oceanic’s third floor private banquet room provides a spectacular lookout over the Atlantic Ocean, Wrightsville Beach and Masonboro Island. With its own restroom & bar facilities, it is perfect for wedding receptions, birthdays and corporate functions. Oceanic is a classic seafood house specializing in local seafood. Choose from a selection of seafood platters, combination plates and daily fresh fish. For land lovers, try steaks, chicken or pasta. OceanicRestaurant.com. 703 S. Lumina Avenue, Wrightsville Beach. 910.256.5551
For eight years, the Reel Café has been Wilmington’s premier restaurant and nightlife location, because it has something for everyone. Enjoy dining in our restaurant, live music in our courtyard Oyster Bar, dancing in the secondfloor danceclub or cocktails on the Rooftop Bar overlooking the Cape Fear River. We offer lunch, dinner and a late-night menu. Lunch has a variety of salads, sandwiches and steamers. Our dinner menu has a wonderful variety of burgers, sandwiches, pastas and steaks. We also have delicious seafood entrées and salads, or try the specials prepared daily by our chef. Whether it’s a delightful meal, live music or the downtown nightlife, The Reel Café is the place to be. Located at 100 S. Front Street, the Reel is also available for banquets and private parties. Call for details: 251-1832.
southern Hall’s tropicana restaurant Hall’s is a Wilmington tradition! Originally opened in 1901 as a drug store, Hall’s has been serving the Downtown community for over 100 years. We serve traditional Southern fare, including a classic breakfast with the accompaniments you’ve grown to love. Lunch includes a Southern buffet MondayFriday with pork, chicken, all the fixin’s, and a special addition every day! Don’t forget our unique menu, which includes everything from specialty sandwiches to fried seafood. Most importantly, at Hall’s everything is fresh! Open Monday-Friday, 7am-2pm (buffet 11-2), and Saturday from 7am-12:30pm with breakfast and menu items only. 421 Castle St. 910-762-2210.
pinK piG cafe Downtown Wilmington’s newest dining option has arrived! Serving breakfast and lunch all day, the Pink Pig offers a full menu featuring good ol’ fashioned cookin’ along with a few of our own innovations. For breakfast, try one of our tasty country plates or a sandwich stacked high with your favorite items. For lunch, try our alreadyfamous Redneck Reuben, and you can’t go wrong with our real pit-smoked barbecue sandwiches. C’mon in try for yourself! Open Tues-Sat, 8am-8pm, and Sun., 10am6pm. 124 Princess St, Downtown. 910399-6096 other sporting events. We have plenty of seating and a fun atmosphere for the whole family. In Racine Commons, 910409-9860.
#ELEBRATE THE .EW 9EAR Open New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day
Order food for your New Year’s Eve party and don’t forget New Year’s Day! We’ve got traditional “good luck” food such as ham hocks, black eyed peas and collard greens.
Open ve E s a m t s Chri m 11am-3p
Over 20 Homestyle Vegetables and Fresh cooked Eastern North Carolina BBQ Pork cooked daily ALSO SERVED DAILY... Fried Chicken, Baked Chicken, Chicken & Pastry, Catfish, Whiting, Clam Strips, Fat Back, Crinkle Fries, Chitlins, Rutabagas, Green Beans, Mac-N-Cheese, Sweet Potato Soufflé, Cabbage, Boiled Potatoes, Corn, Field Peas, Turnips, Collards, Baked Beans, Green Peas, Lima Beans, Rice, Mashed Potatoes & Gravy, Coleslaw, Potato Salad, Pan Fried Okra, Rolls, Hushpuppies, Apple, Blueberry & Peach Cobbler, Cherry Cheesecake, Banana Pudding and Ice Cream OPEN: Wednesday-Saturday 11am-9pm, Sunday - 11-8pm CLOSED MONDAY & TUESDAY
“Voted BEST BUFFET and SOUL FOOD by encore readers” 2007, 2008 and 2009
(910)798•2913 • 5559 Oleander Dr. Between Dogwood Lane & French Street, across from the batting cages
encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com 27
d r i e w e h t f o s w e n Chuck Shepherd digs up the strangest of the strange in world news
LEAD STORY In Somalia, which is without a central government to speak of and where very little functions beyond an Islamic resistance and individual warlords’ fiefdoms, a robust “stock market” has emerged in the city of Haradheere for “investors” in the seagoing pirate “industry,” to raise money and supplies for kidnappers in exchange for a share of the bounty once a ransom is paid. According to a December Reuters dispatch, 72 “companies” are listed on the exchange, enabling “venture capital” to fund greater piracy traffic and more sophisticated looting. There even seems to be a financial “bubble” at work, in that since the “exchange” opened, pirates’ ransoms have doubled to about $4 million per ship. Cultural Diversity Afghanistan’s national game, buzkashi, is attempting a marketing transformation inspired by pro football’s and basketball’s growths in the United States over the last several decades, according to a November USA Today dispatch. The main hindrance is
that buzkashi is often little more than violent anarchy. A team of 12 men on horseback tries to carry a goat carcass the length of a field, around a goal and back, through an opposing team “defense” that includes almost any tactic short of murder. Spectators are often trampled by riders disregarding boundaries, and horses have dropped dead on the field from abuse or fatigue. The head of the Buzkashi Federation said he aims to present the game for consideration to the International Olympic Committee. Latest Religious Messages Carried Away: (1) Since March 2008, the Cathedral of Christ the King in Phoenix has been ringing its bells every half-hour, 24 hours a day, enraging neighbors, and a showdown with city officials was looming at press time, according to ABC News. (2) Martina Rabess, 52, was sanctioned by Britain’s Sevenoaks Magistrates Court in October after neighbors complained about her loud, continuous recitations of the Lord’s Prayer in early morning hours around her apartment house. (3) Atlanta municipal
bus driver Leroy Matthews was suspended in November for a recent incident in which he suddenly stopped the bus and refused to open the doors until the alighting passenger joined hands with him in prayer. The Scranton (Pa.) Diocese, Needing Confession: Father Edward Lyman of the diocese was removed as a parish administrator in November after he inadvertently (using his personal computer during early Mass) clicked on photos of four barechested young men in provocative poses. Also in November, the diocese disavowed Father Virgil Tetherow’s behavior for offering Mass at a breakaway church in York, Pa., and too-aggressively protesting at a Planned Parenthood clinic (incidents on top of Tetherow’s 2005 conviction on a charge that was originally child porn possession but downgraded in a plea agreement). And yet another diocese priest, Father Robert Timchak, waived a preliminary hearing in November on charges of having child porn on his computer. Karma (1) Shannon Broome, 15, of Jacksonville, Fla., with her leg in a cast and still laid up from a June rollover accident in an SUV, was hit again in December when another out-of-control SUV came through her bedroom wall and re-broke the leg (among other injuries inflicted). (2) Recently, at the Abergele Hospital in North Wales, Geraint Woolford, 52, was moved into a room to await a partial knee replacement and discovered that his roommate was Geraint Woolford, 77, who was awaiting a hip replacement. According to a December report in the Daily Mail, they are not related, but both are retired police officers. The Simplest Musical Instrument Rajeev Kumar of Calcutta, India, is wellknown locally for playing the harmonica, specifically, using only his right nostril. For added show, Kumar plays two harmonicas simultaneously, with nostril and mouth. A BBC News reporter watching him (for a December dispatch) said Kumar’s strain was obvious. “(T)he veins running through his nose and neck bulge, his eyes pop out, and his face looks red and stretched.” And at Britain’s West Midland Safari Park, the African elephant “Five” spends portions of almost every day puffing away at a harmonica she found in her enclosure. Said a park spokesperson, “Five was making tunes within a few weeks.” (The talented Five also paints on canvas.) Questionable Judgments Michael Sampson, who was in court in Salina, Kan., in November merely on charg-
28 encore | december 30, 2009 - january 5, 2010 | www.encorepub.com
es of littering and driving with a suspended license, was arrested after a judge spotted him at the defense table, making threatening gestures to witnesses. Sampson was seen holding his thumb and fingers in the shape of a gun, “firing” at a witness, and making a slashing motion across his neck. In November, Father Joe Vetter, head of Duke University’s Catholic Center, criticized a research team seeking student volunteers on female attitudes toward sex toys and paraphernalia. Father Vetter said the project would affect students “in this development phase (of their lives), and I don’t think it’s a good developmental practice to just tell somebody to just sit around and masturbate.” People With Issues Sara Foss, 39, the mother of 13 in Derby, England, who is scheduled to deliver No. 14 in March, told the Daily Mail in November of her vow to continue getting pregnant until she fulfills her desire to have twins. Her longtime, live-in boyfriend works as a boat-builder, but their main income is government benefits worth the equivalent of about $80,000 annually. (Foss, apparently also a fan of literature and movies, has kids named Artemus, Morpheus, Voorhees, Baudelaire, Blackbird, Echo, Malachai and Frodo.) Least Competent Criminals Not Ready for Prime Time: (1) Andre Stoltzfus, 17, was arrested in Saugerties, N.Y., in October after he allegedly counterfeited a $1 bill that a family member later used toward the purchase of a pack of cigarettes. (2) Bandanna-clad Jason Zacchi, 27, was arrested in Dearborn Heights, Mich., in November after, according to police, pointing a shotgun at a Wendy’s employee at the drive-in window and demanding money. Moments later, the shift manager angrily approached the window and yelled at Zacchi, “What the hell are you doing?” (The manager had recognized Zacchi through his bandanna. Zacchi is her son.) Update Ragnar Bengtsson, 26, the male Swedish student who vowed in September to pump milk from his nipples every three hours for 90 days, drop by drop, to show that it could be done, quit in November, concluding that it can’t. Said a TV producer following Bengtsson around, “All he got was sore breasts.” Read News of the Weird daily at www.WeirdUniverse.net. Send your Weird News to WeirdNews@earthlink.net or P.O. Box 18737, Tampa Florida, 33679.
New Year's Eve at the wing
the line up. Live Music with
($10 Cover / $15 Per Couple)
Free Party Favors & Champagne Toast Special Champagne Cocktails
the next day day.
BOWL GAME MADNESS
AT THE WING!
New Yearâ€™s Day at the Wing
Bubbly, Bloodys & Football! $3 Champagne Mimosas & Poinsettias
NCAA Bowl Games All Day!
Happy New Year! Live Music Late Night w/ Jason
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