Page 1

Local podcasters are talking

November 2017

One Well’s fun and games

Artist SinGh

Meet Donna Odom

Southwest Michigan’s Magazine

FGood

Medicine The prescription on your plate


up front encore

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“The day of my injury, me and my friends were preparing for the football season. I scored a couple of touchdowns. Then about two plays later, my dad saw me get hit and take a direct knee to my head. The paramedics came and took me to the local hospital. Once the doctors realized that my neck was broken, they decided to fly me on a helicopter to Bronson Methodist Hospital—they said Bronson had the best spine experts around. After fearing I may be paralyzed, I was able to make a miraculous recovery. I’ve never felt so happy to walk. You know, you realize how grateful you should be for everyday life. I’m so grateful to Bronson.” CJ, Three Rivers, Michigan To learn more about CJ’s story and the benefits of choosing Bronson for spine care, visit bronsonpositivity.com/spine.


Making a Positive Impact

Local podcasters are talking

November 2017

One Well’s fun and games

Artist SinGh

Meet Donna Odom

Southwest Michigan’s Magazine

FGood

Medicine The prescription on your plate

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Encore Magazine is published 12 times yearly. Copyright 2017, Encore Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. Editorial, circulation and advertising correspondence should be sent to:

www.encorekalamazoo.com 117 W. Cedar St. Suite A, Kalamazoo, MI 49007 Telephone: (269) 383-4433 Fax: (269) 383-9767 Email: Publisher@encorekalamazoo.com The staff at Encore welcomes written comment from readers, and articles and poems for submission with no obligation to print or return them. To learn more about us or to comment, visit encorekalamazoo.com. Encore subscription rates: one year $36, two years $70. Current single issue and newsstand $4, $10 by mail. Back issues $6, $12 by mail. Advertising rates on request. Closing date for space is 28 days prior to publication date. Final date for print-ready copy is 21 days prior to publication date. The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by those interviewed and published here do not reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of Encore Magazine or the official policies, owners or employees of Encore Publications.

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encore editor's note

From the Editor So begins “the crazy season” — that time between Halloween and Christmas

when the days seem to go by in double time and, before we know it, we’re staring down a new year and don’t have any idea what just happened to the last one. But it’s not all bad. “The crazy season” is also one of our area’s most prolific times for art, music and cultural activities. From comedy to A Christmas Carol, sacred music to Styx, modern dance to the mind-blowing science of Brain Candy Live! there’s a lot to see and do in November. And December isn’t even here yet. You’ll find information on many of these great events in the pages of this month’s issue, but we also hope you’ll find something else: inspiration to take a moment to be mindful and generous to yourself. One way to do that is to embrace the idea that food can be good medicine. In our cover feature we introduce you to local people working to make that concept part of our everyday lives. Or maybe you just need to slow down and listen to a podcast or two. One of our stories will tell you about several local people who make podcasts on everything from financial advice to remote-controlled airplanes. Or maybe you want to grab the kids and go have a game night. You can find out in this issue how a local brewpub has discovered its niche by catering to families. We also introduce you to two very different individuals making their mark on Kalamazoo: SHARE’s Donna Odom, who heads up this month’s Summit on Racism, and Artist SinGh, the “stunt painter” whose work has generated curiosity and controversy. And lest we forget, a word of Thanksgiving: Thank you for being an Encore reader and sharing in our enthusiasm and love for this community.

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November

CONTENTS 2017

FEATURE Food Medicine

The prescription for a healthy life starts on your plate

28

DEPARTMENTS 5 From the Editor 8 Contributors 10 First Things Happenings in SW Michigan 14 Five Faves Director Bill McElhone shares his favorite items at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum

16

Up Front

22

Savor

46

Something to Talk About — Area podcasters speak about their passions

Ale and the Family — One Well Brewing caters to kids and the young at heart

Back Story

Meet Donna Odom — She works to highlight black history and create racial equity

ARTS 34 Artist SinGh — The “stunt painter” whose work has generated curiosity and controversy 38 Events of Note

On the cover: Beautiful fresh vegetables and fruit from the Kalamazoo Farmers’ Market are just what the doctor ordered. Photo by Brian Powers.

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contributors encore

Andrew Domino Andrew brings us two stories this month — a feature on the attention-getting Artist SinGh and another about people in the area making podcasts. Andrew sought out SinGh for a story because he passes the artist’s studio often and has wondered about the eclectic artworks in the yard. As a fan of podcasts, Andrew discovered several local people were involved in making them, from recording and posting them to assisting others in getting interviewed by well-known podcast hosts. You can find more of Andrew’s work at dominowriting.com.

Adam Rayes Perhaps one would consider it cruel that we asked Adam, who is not legally old enough to drink yet, to write a story about One Well Brewing and its kid-friendly atmosphere. He wasn’t alone in his temperance, however. None of the kids whose families frequent One Well Brewing could drink either. Adam, a native of Monroe, interned at Encore Publications this past summer and is currently attending Western Michigan University, where he is majoring in journalism.

Robert M. Weir Researching an article about healthy eating as good medicine provided Robert with an opportunity to “eat on the job.” He and his partner, Cyndy, attended two of Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s “medical culinary” hands-on cooking sessions, learned to improve the nutritional value of their meals, obtained recipes that have become new favorite dinners, and cooked and dined with the other participants. Robert’s interview with Heather Ratliff, the Wellness RN, also provided valuable information about ways to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Read more about Robert at robertmweir.com.

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First Things encore

First Things Something Great

Encore has a treasure trove of amazing photography — too much for us to ever be able print within the pages of our magazine. So, on Dec.1, we are partnering with Mercantile Bank for an Art Hop exhibit that will share some of these never-seenbefore images, as well as many of the most beautiful pictures to have graced our pages. You’ll be able to view the photos from 5-8 p.m. at Mercantile Bank, 107 W. Michigan Ave., as well as talk to Encore staff and photographer Brian Powers. Live music will also be performed. We look forward to meeting you there!

Brian Powers

Encore photos at December Art Hop

Something Good

Spell out F-U-N for literacy Part mental challenge and part costume party, the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee is a

10 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

wild way to support children’s literacy. The event, which begins at 6 p.m. Nov. 8 at Western Michigan University’s Bernhard Center, features teams competing for the right to be called the best spellers in Kalamazoo. Each team has two spellers and six cheerleaders, and there is a prize not only for best spelling, but also for best costumes, most enthusiastic team, most creative cheers and audience favorite. Proceeds from the event support the Kalamazoo Public Library’s Ready to Read program, which provides books for at-risk children in Kalamazoo County. To register a team or get more information, visit kpl.gov/kids/spelling-bee.


encore First Things

Something Important

Rise of hate is focus of racism summit With a theme of #StayWokeKzoo, the Kalamazoo Summit on Racism this month will look at the rise of hate in America. Lecia Brooks, outreach director for the Southern Poverty Law Center, will be the summit’s keynote speaker. Brooks, who is also the director of the Civil Rights Memorial Center in Montgomery, Ala., will discuss the SPLC’s work and the hate groups in Michigan. This annual summit, presented by the Racial Healing Initiative of the Society for History and Racial Equity (SHARE), seeks to bring the community together for an open dialogue on race and eradicating racism. The summit runs from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Nov. 17 at the Borgess Lawrence Education Center, 1521 Gull Road, and registration is $35. For more information or to register, go to sharekazoo.org. You can read more about the summit in our “Back Story” interview with Donna Odom, executive director of SHARE, on Page 46.

Lecia Brooks

Something Musical

The Little Mermaid splashes on stage What Michigander isn’t thinking about how nice it would be to be under the sea — or at least by the sea — in November and December? The Civic Theatre is offering the next best thing with its production of Disney's The Little Mermaid Nov. 17–Dec. 3 at the Civic Auditorium, 329 S. Park St. This big splash of a family musical tells the tale of the mermaid Ariel, who falls in love with a human prince and makes a deal with a witch to be temporarily transformed into a human. And while you’re tapping your toes to such tunes as "Kiss the Girl" and "Under the Sea," you might see a familiar face or two (such as TV and radio personality Lori Moore as Ursula). Tickets are $15-$35. For tickets or more information, visit kazoocivic.com or call 343-1313.

w w w.encorekalamazoo.com | 11


First Things encore

Something Smart

Partake of some Brain Candy What happens when two of the craziest, most curious scientific minds collide? That’s what audiences will find out at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29 when Brian Candy Live! lands at Miller Auditorium. Adam Savage, one half of television’s Mythbusters team that loved to blow things up, and Michael Stevens, better known as YouTube’s VSauce, join forces for what they describe as “a two-hour play date with Walt Disney, Willy Wonka and Albert Einstein.” Tickets are $35-$128. For more information, visit millerauditorium.com/brain-candy-live.

Something Unusual

Memphis music highlighted It’s a double feature of the best kind.

On Nov. 12, the Kalamazoo State Theatre will combine a showing of the 2014 documentary film Take Me to the River with live performances featuring some of the musicians from the film. Take Me to the River celebrates the musical influence of Memphis, Tennessee, paying tribute to old-school blues and R&B masters as they work with hip-hop artists of today. After the movie, cast members, including Bobby Rush, Charlie Musselwhite, William Bell, Frayser Boy, Al Kapone, The Hi Rhythm Section and The Stax Academy Alumni Band, will perform. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15-$33 and available at kazoostate.com.

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encore First Things

Something Uplifting

Festival highlights variety of sacred music With eight performances scheduled throughout the month, the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music is a feast of spiritual and cultural music. This annual festival, in its 10th year, offers diverse performances that highlight holy music from cultures around the world. Among the scheduled performers are The Rose Ensemble; which performs medieval to modern world music, with Piffaro: The Renaissance Band; Neshama Carlebach, who sings Jewish music and is the daughter of the late “Singing Rabbi,” Shlomo Carlebach; BrazilianAfrican performers Capoeria Mandinga, and Canadian Muslim singer/songwriter and instrumentalist Dawud Wharnsby performing with local band The Red Sea Pedestrians. For a complete list of performances, venues and ticket prices, visit mfsm.us. Performances are also listed in our “Events of Note,” beginning on Page 38. Neshama Carlebach

Something Jolly

Holiday Parade hits the streets With big ol’ balloons, marching bands and floats, the Holiday Parade is Kalamazoo’s

annual way of saying, “Hey, the holidays are here!” So, say “ho, ho, ho” instead of “humbug” on Nov. 11, grab a blanket or chair, and park yourself along Lovell Street, Park Street, West Michigan Avenue or Portage Street in downtown Kalamazoo and partake in the fun. The parade kicks off at 11 a.m. For more information, visit bit.ly/2yzA3kt.

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five faves encore

Five Faves

Museum’s director tags his favorite artifacts by

Bill McElhone

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum has more than 55,000 artifacts in its collection, and the collection grows every year. It’s hard to pick favorites from that many items, but there are a handful that I am particularly drawn to because of their design, their story or their significance to the community.

The mummy The mummy, estimated to be from 304-30 B.C., was sent from Cairo, Egypt, to the U.S. for display at the 1895 San Francisco Exposition. It was then displayed for 15 years at what is now the de Young Museum, in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. When it was purchased from an elderly man, the mummy's face was completely wrapped. The wrappings were carefully cut away from the face in order to show its features. The mummy is more than an iconic exhibit at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum; it’s an exhibit that blends history and science to help answer questions about who the mummy was as a person and the life she had 2,300 years ago.

The Checker cab This was one of the last Checker cabs produced, and I’m glad that this important piece of automotive history is on exhibit at the museum. Our cab came off the assembly line in Kalamazoo in 1982 and was part of a fleet of 25 taxis for the Yellow Cab Co. of Chicago. Born and raised in Detroit, I have always had an interest in automotive history, and until I moved to Kalamazoo, my interest in cars was narrowly defined by Ford, GM and Chrysler. Kalamazoo’s Checker Motor Company is an amazing story. Checker cabs are very iconic and still can be seen in hundreds, if not thousands, of movies and television shows.

Firestone Air Chief radio This is one of the items at the museum that simply appeals to my own

interest in “streamline” design. This model, on display on the first floor in the museum’s Time Pieces exhibit, was produced in 1939 and shown at the World's Fair in New York City. It was made out of Plaskon, the plastic of choice back then, and it sold for $14.95. The sleek design of the radio’s exterior case in no way enhanced its reception of AM stations; it simply appealed to consumers’ interest in “modern” design of the late 1930s.

14 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017


encore five faves

Claire Wight diaries This series of diaries from Claire Wight, the daughter of a local Baptist minister, appeal to me as a historian. The stories in her diaries, which she kept from age 15 through college, provide insight that you can’t get anywhere else. Some of Claire’s notations may be considered trivial, but others — like the one about a chance encounter that led to her seeing Helen Keller speak at Kalamazoo’s First Congregational Church in 1914, when she took extreme measures to “push” her way into the crowded venue — provide a very personal connection to the past. It’s easy to imagine how a teenager today might behave in a similar fashion to see someone who was world-famous. Claire’s transcribed diaries are also available on the museum’s website for all to read.

Douglass Community Association sign Slightly tattered and worn, this sign from the 1970s and ’80s provides a tangible connection to a historically important institution in Kalamazoo. The Douglass Community Association, named in honor of Frederick Douglass, was founded in 1919 to address the social, recreational and cultural needs of African-American soldiers stationed at Fort Custer and their families who were returning to a segregated Kalamazoo after World War I. Several oral histories conducted to create a greater understanding of how the Douglass Community Association has touched lives during its nearly 100 years are part of a permanent exhibit in the museum’s History Gallery.

Bill McElhone, the director of the Kalamazoo Valley Museum since 2010, has worked in the museum and archives field for nearly 40 years. His philosophy is that history is all about “the story,” and to that end he serves as the editor of the museum’s museON magazine. He also wrote the “History Happenstances” column in the Birmingham Eccentric newspaper for eight years and has had articles published in several journals and magazines.

w w w.encorekalamazoo.com | 15


up front encore

Something to Talk About

Area podcasters speak about their passions by

Andrew Domino

I

f you want to learn about radiocontrolled airplanes, marketing techniques or classical music, try listening to the podcasts created by some local folks. A number of people in southwestern Michigan are recording and posting podcasts on topics that run the gamut from business to music to religion and beyond. Podcasts are audio programs that can be downloaded from or listened to on the internet. Pick a subject, and there’s likely someone talking about it on a podcast, with new episodes released monthly, weekly or even daily. Listeners can hear podcasts at any time, even old episodes. Some shows even invite contributors to join in.

16 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

“If you have something to say, other people will want to hear it,” says Tom Stolz, who turns the weekly Sunday service at the LightHouse of Prayer in Comstock, where he is a speaker and parishioner, into a podcast. Apparently, that goes for radio-controlled airplanes as well. “We try to make it like you’re hanging out in your buddy’s workshop,” says Tim Walker, one of the voices on Angle of Attack, a podcast about the radio-controlled-airplane hobby. Walker, who now lives in North Carolina, lived in Richland until 2013. He was originally a guest and later the host of an earlier podcast on radio-controlled planes, The Crashcast. In 2016, he revised the show into Angle of Attack, where he talks with three friends about new


RC airplane technology, ideas for improving planes, and more. One co-host, Tim King, also lives in North Carolina, about 30 miles from Walker. The other two are farther away: Chris McElveen lives in Georgia, and Karl Kethler lives in British Columbia, Canada. Angle of Attack is recorded live on YouTube nearly every Wednesday evening (except holidays). Immediately after the show, the producers mark it as a “private” show so it can be edited into a podcast that’s available for download on their website (angleofattackpodcast.com). Walker says more than a dozen people call in with comments and questions during each live show, but he says he would still be part of the podcast even if no one were listening. “It’s a way for me to express myself without being in front of people,” he says. “If it was just the four of us talking, that would be OK.”

What you need A podcast is simple to put together — all that’s needed is a computer and an internet connection. Many computers and phones have microphones that can record audio. Free editing software like Audacity can be used to remove pauses in the conversation and “bleep” objectionable words for a familyfriendly show. Once a podcast is ready, it can be uploaded to a podcast hosting service like Podbean or Libsyn, and from there listeners can download it to their computers or phones. There’s no single list of the most popular podcasts, although several podcasts have become well known in popular culture. One of these, Serial, followed the investigation of a murder in Baltimore. On The Nerdist podcast, comedian Chris Hardwick interviews movie stars. Twenty Thousand Hertz explains the background behind sounds, discussing how talking dolls are made, for example, and guessing at the sounds of other planets.

w w w.encorekalamazoo.com | 17


Up front encore

Courtesy

Most podcasts involve original content, although National Public Radio releases not only most of its own shows, but shows from other public radio organizations like American Public Media and Public Radio International, as podcasts. WMUK, the NPR station at Western Michigan University, makes its locally produced shows available as podcasts as well. These include Listening to Ladies, a podcast hosted by WMU graduate student Elisabeth Blair in which she interviews female classical music composers. Blair is a composer herself, and each episode of her podcast blends the voices of contemporary female composers talking about their work and their background with samples of their music. Blair created a blog about modern female classical composers when she couldn’t find much information about them. The blog,

Courtesy

Elisabeth Blair, above, created a podcast spotlighting women composers, while Matt Hollaran, left, hosts a podcast for financial advisors.

which is still active, led to the podcast series, which first aired on Sept. 26, 2016. A discussion Blair had about the show with WMUK’s Cara Lieurance opened a space for Listening to Ladies to be replayed on WMUK. Blair says time limitations will keep the number of her podcast episodes to about 30. She says it’s too time-consuming to record and edit each episode to the level of quality she wants to hear, but she’ll continue to write about women composers online. Across campus, Maddy Day, director of outreach and training at Fostering Success Michigan, is collecting interviews with teens raised in foster care in the form of podcasts (fosteringsuccessmichigan.

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com/library). Fostering Success Michigan is a program that boosts the rate of college attendance and graduation for children and teens raised in foster care. The podcast was originally a way for Day to introduce her colleagues to their audience; one early episode discusses ways for adults to support foster care kids, while another is an interview with a Michigan Department of Treasury official about financial aid. More recent podcast episodes feature university students talking about their experiences. Day says the podcast is released about once a month. She expects to talk to about seven students each school year.

Business and fun Podcasting about airplanes is fun, and podcasting about foster care is educational. But some podcasters say a really successful podcast is one that promotes a business. “It’s like you’re going into a conference room to talk to 100 people who are all your ideal customers,” says Tom Schwab of Interview Valet, an online business connecting potential podcast guests with shows that will bring them closer to their audiences. Schwab, who lives in Kalamazoo, and his business partner, Aaron Walker of Nashville, Tennessee, have compiled a list of 400,000 podcasts, divided into subjects like health and wellness, business, and Christianity. They can reach out to the producers of these podcasts to place their clients as interview guests. Interview Valet now has about 75 clients, including author Siphiwe Baleka, a former truck driver who wrote 4-Minute Fit, a workout and diet book for people who, like truckers, spend their workdays sitting. Baleka was interviewed on Good Morning America in March, and Interview Valet got him guest spots on about two dozen fitness-related podcasts at the same time. Schwab says that putting a client on a podcast with just a handful of listeners can generate better results than doing a directmail campaign to a neighborhood. Only a few people may be listening, but they’re all interested enough in the topic to find the podcast in the first place. Sometimes

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listeners will find a podcast long after it was first put online. Schwab said clients have told him that friends call them thinking they’re in town because the friends heard the client’s voice on a podcast, even one recorded months before. Consistency — having a show ready for download the same time each week or each month — is key to a successful show, podcasters say. Walker and his partners meet nearly every week, except holidays, to talk about model airplanes. They prepare a rough outline of what they’re going to talk about but let the conversation go where it will; no two shows are exactly the same length. Blair has used social media platforms such as Twitter to promote her podcast whenever a new episode becomes available. She says the show, meant to introduce the public to women composers, has had an unexpected side effect. “The more I do this, the more I get thought of as an expert,” she says. Listeners and readers have suggested other women for her to interview, and she has been hired to write music simply because she’s been recognized from Listening to Ladies. Matt Halloran, of Portage, hosts a podcast called Top Advisor Marketing (topadvisormarketing.podbean.com), which offers coaching by financial advisors. He says the prerecorded nature of podcasts means they’re a great way for advisors not to have to “sell” themselves. Listeners — potential clients of an advisor — get to hear the advisor talk with the podcast host instead of feeling any pressure to buy a product or use a service. And because podcasts are always available to download, listeners can learn something from the advisor at a time that’s convenient for them. Podcasts also give advisors on Top Advisor Marketing a chance to perfect their message. “It’s not live — you can take a pause and try again,” Halloran says. “My job is to make you sound great.”


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savor encore

Ale and the Family

One Well caters to kids and the young at heart by

Adam Rayes

22 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Brian Powers

Jordyn Tovey

It wasn't planned that One Well Brewing would become a popular family hangout, but that’s what’s happened anyway. The microbrewery, which opened in 2014, has garnered a reputation for having great locally made brews, good food and — unusual for a brewpub — a kid-friendly atmosphere. That atmosphere developed naturally but was completely unexpected, says co-owner T.J. Waldofsky. "You don't know what your customers are going to want. You don't even know who your customers are going to be,” Waldofsky says. “You can kind of guess at it when you're writing a business plan, but we saw people coming in here and they had kids and they wanted food for their kids, so we created a kids’ menu. And when we expanded in 2016, we realized there were more kids coming in here, so we're like, ‘Let's just cater to that.’"


Brian Powers

Brian Courtesy Powers

encore savor

Opposite page: One Well Brewing owners Chris O’Neill (left) and T.J. Waldofsky have created a unique environment where patrons, like those above, play board games with their friends and families.

Games and more The One Well taphouse, located at 4213 Portage St., features a kids’ play area with toys and room to roam. There’s a wall lined with classic pinball machines, several oldschool arcade machines like Double Dragon and Golden Axe, and a bookshelf filled with more than 300 board games, some of which came from the personal collection of brewery co-owner Chris O’Neill. And the kids’ menu features popular children’s meals such as pizza and grilled cheese sandwiches.

“We want anybody to feel welcome here, and if that includes kids and young families that want to bring in their kids to come and play in our kid area, then, by all means, they should come here,” Waldofsky says. And come they do. “We can still have a nice night out,” One Well patron Mandy Roscheke says as she watches her 2- and 6-year-olds play in the kids’ area. She’s been bringing her children to One Well for about a year and says she enjoys the opportunity to have a good time while being out with her kids. Rebecca Longcorn has been coming to the brewery since it opened and says she loves (continued on page 26)

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Jordyn Tovey

savor encore

(continued from page 23)

that she and her children, ages 6, 7 and 10, can enjoy the board games, like Yahtzee, that she played when she was younger. She says her kids also love the brewery’s regular menu. And it’s not just regulars who bring their children. On Mallory Aleinberg’s first visit to the brewery, she brought her 2- and 4-yearold children based on the recommendation of a friend. “I don’t have to worry about people looking at them if they’re being loud,” Aleinberg says

Left to right: Patrons enjoy One Well Brewing’s wall of pinball machines; trees and branches were used to create the brewpub’s distinctive bar; and a bookshelf of board games stands next to the brewpub’s play area.

about her children, who laugh loudly as they play. The idea of bringing children into a brewpub may shock some people, but Waldofsky says One Well Brewing caters to kids in the same ways that some chain restaurants do. “I think some people struggle with it,” he says, “but if you look at any chain restaurant, they serve liquor and they have kids in there

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encore savor every day. We don't serve liquor — I’m not saying liquor is bad or anything — but they're doing the same thing. We’re a bar and a restaurant.” Waldofsky says those who want a more purely adult atmosphere may feel more welcome at One Well after 9 p.m. Gathering by the well

Brian Powers

Jordyn Tovey

Perhaps what draws families — and others — to One Well is the intention behind the establishment. When O’Neill and Waldofsky were planning their

microbrewery, they wanted it to be a place where “everyone can gather together and have a good time,” says Waldofsky. “Before pubs even existed, people in every town would gather around a well and talk about what was going on in town, play some music and hang out,” he says. “We wanted to kind of embody what that vestige represented and make a community gathering place. You can sit down — we’re not rushing you out of here. We don’t have a wait staff intentionally because if you wanted to sit here and play a board game for two hours, we’re not trying to flip your table and get someone else in here.” Oh, and there’s the beer, too. One Well’s handcrafted brews, such as its famous Xalapa, an ale that features the taste of a jalapeno without any of the spicy kick, have done so well that One Well recently acquired a 10,000-square-foot production facility at 3618 Gembrit Circle to house a new brewing system and to serve as a distribution center should the brewery begin distributing some of its products to other retail locations. That facility also allows other area microbreweries to pay a fee to brew their beverages there in large batches on a monthly basis as opposed to making smaller batches weekly at their own facilities. Waldofsky says he and O’Neill have also talked about the possibility of opening a second taphouse location, though where that would be, he says, is up in the air. “You’ll never meet an asshole at a brewery,” Waldofsky says and it seems his brewery’s patrons, young and old, might agree with him there.

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FGOOD

MEDICINE The prescription for health is on your plate by

28 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Robert w. weir


Brian Powers

W

hether we eat at home, dine out or grab something on the run, consuming food is such a necessity that many of us have lost awareness of just what we are putting into our mouths. But if it were pills or medicine, would we think about what we are chewing on a bit more carefully? What if food were medicine? This kind of thinking is the basis of a movement that treats food as medicine. The movement is being championed by local wellness practitioners and is the focus of a medical culinary program at Kalamazoo Valley Community College. Heather Ratliff, a registered nurse and wellness coach who owns The Wellness RN, for example, teaches clients that healthful cooking and food consumption is one of five cornerstones — along with adequate exercise, ample sleep, stress management and reduced toxin exposure — of optimal health. KVCC, in partnership with Bronson Healthcare, has created an entire educational curriculum that teaches future chefs, medical professionals and the public about healthy cooking and eating.

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“Food is a lot cheaper than pills,” says Vivien McCurdy, KVCC’s director of food safety and nutrition and head of the college’s medical culinary program. “If people eat healthier and improve their health, they can cut down on medical expenses.es.” The KVCC program informs and educates institutional and restaurant chefs, medical professionals and the general public about how to foster awareness of healthier food intake through its series of one-night classes that focus on nutrition to improve physical and mental health. Each class addresses a particular food characteristic, such as carbohydrates, lipids or gluten. Sessions for the public emphasize awareness of food ingredients, food origins, meal preparation and intake volume. Sessions for medical professionals also address how doctors, nurses and nutritionists can best communicate with their patients about food and how it relates to disease management. “As doctors become more aware of food as medicine, both the program and the principles, the more they inspire their patients to eat better and to engage local produce in their everyday eating habits,” McCurdy says. Doing so is especially important for patients who have undergone a major health crisis or diagnosis — such as a cardiac event or a diabetes diagnosis — after which the doctor or a dietician breaks the news that dietary changes are necessary. “The medical professional,” McCurdy says, “might tell a patient, ‘You can no longer eat saturated fats’ or ‘You must stay on a 2,000-calorie per day diet.’ What does that mean? The patient probably isn’t in a state of mind to comprehend the details of a new way of eating. The patient wants a translation to understand how those instructions will impact his or her daily lifestyle.” KVCC instructor and chef Cory Barrett adds, “Our classes for the medical professionals make food a topic of conversation between the doctor and the patient. They (medical professionals) are better able to convey that dietary changes are an idea worth trying instead of a rule that must be followed.” Why all of this attention to eating, something we do automatically? Simply because many of us tend to automatically eat 30 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Brian Powers

Education of eating

KVCC offers classes in healthy cooking This fall Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s medical culinary program is offering the following classes: • Nov. 9 — Carbohydrates and Diabetes Cooking, secrets for using fresh, local ingredients to replace sugars in your cooking. • Dec. 5 — Understanding Gluten Sensitivity, how to use gluten-free ingredients to create healthy, delicious, fun meals. • Dec. 12 — Baking with Healthy Fats, how to use just the right amount of healthy fats in baking holiday treats. The classes run from 5:30–8:30 p.m. in the Culinary/Allied Health Building, at 315 E. Walnut St. Each starts with a cooking the same old, same old, which tastes great but can make us unhealthy. Such unhealthy eating practices, Ratliff says, are among the root causes of diabetes, gastrointestinal and cardiac disorders, anxiety and depression, and a decline in mental acuity. She says that paying attention to what we eat helps us “figure out the underlying problem and understand that an unhealthy lifestyle is not sustainable.”

Who’s cooking?

Ratliff, who is educated in biology, environmental science, public policy and nursing, says she likes to analyze community

demonstration by Chef Cory Barrett and a brief introduction to the topic by a KVCC dietitian, during which a tasty treat is served. Each participant receives an information packet that includes printouts of the dietitian’s presentation and four recipes. The class continues in a spacious commercial kitchen, where participants prepare one of four simple, yet delicious, meals. After that, everyone serves themselves a plate of all four of the prepared dishes, then dines together while discussing what they learned in the class. The cost is $65 per class, and scholarship opportunities are available. For details, visit kvcc.edu/medicalculinary. health situations from several perspectives to find the root causes of discomfort and disease. Among the societal factors that have led many Americans to practice unhealthy dietary habits, she says, is a worsening economy, which often requires individuals to work more. “Americans in their 30s to 50s are the first generation to grow up without someone in the household who exclusively manages the family diet and nutrition,” she says. “Feeding a family while also working a full-time job takes a lot of energy, and we don’t live in an environment that supports that.”


One Pot Wonder: Chickpea Tagine with Whitefish by Chef Cory Barrett.

Brian Powers

Ingredients • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil • 1 tsp. cinnamon • 1 tsp. cumin • ½ c. onion, diced • ½ c. carrot, diced • 1 Tbsp. garlic, chopped • ¾ c. red bell pepper, diced • ¼ c. raisins • 16 oz. can low-sodium chickpeas, (liquid reserved) • 8 oz. whitefish • 4 Tbsp. fat- free Greek yogurt • Salt to taste Directions 1. Heat oil in a medium sauce pan, over medium heat. 2. Add cinnamon and cumin, and gently toast in oil. 3.When spices are fragrant, add onion, carrot, garlic and bell pepper. 4.Cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender; about 10 minutes. 5. Add chickpeas with the liquid and raisins. 6. Bring mixture to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. 7. Add fish and simmer for approximately 6 more minutes. 8. Serve with a dollop of Greek yogurt. Clockwise from opposite page: Participants in a recent cooking class in KVCCs medical culinary program; Chef Cory Barrett instructs students; the ingredients used in the class.

Ratliff also notes that today’s parents are the first generation to let their children make their own food choices. “Busy moms who don’t have time to cook a healthy meal give in to their kids and just serve macaroni and cheese,” she says. “It’s easy, convenient and delicious, but it’s also a nutrient-poor food.” Ratliff’s assertions are supported by the article “How Marketers Target Kids,” published in the online magazine Media Smarts, which claims that children influence what a family eats for breakfast and lunch and where the family goes for casual dining more than 90 percent of the time. Children get their food ideas from television advertising, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association, which notes that children and teenagers watch television more hours than they are in school. The impact of TV advertising “is greater than usual because

there is an apparent lessening of influence by parents and others in the older generation,” the journal says. McCurdy agrees that child-targeted advertising, along with the rise of convenience foods, is to blame for the fact that as much as 80 percent of today’s American population cooks very few meals a week. “After World War II, baby food came out on the market, and mothers stopped cooking for their kids,” she says. “How do we change a generation who lost their cooking skills and craves fastfood hamburgers?”

Functional medicine, mindful eating

To help counteract such trends, Ratliff educates her clients on the concept of functional medicine, which she defines as “the understanding that the symptoms we experience are merely our body’s responses to our environment. " “Our goal then,” she says, “is to get to the underlying problem. Diabetes and failing organs are real, but would they be there in our body and our life without the precursors of the environment that the body finds itself in?” When treating her patients, Ratliff says, she looks at “the whole picture, including food intake, rather than the separate issues or symptoms.” w w w.encorekalamazoo.com | 31


Brian Powers

Correspondingly, McCurdy orients culinary students and cooking-class participants to the notion of mindful eating. “The whole idea is to think about what you are putting into your mouth,” she explains. ”If what you eat makes you feel good, then that’s good. But if you eat too much and make yourself unhealthy, then you’re not going to feel good.” The same principle, she says, applies to dining out at restaurants, where the portions for one are often enough to serve three or four people. “Many people enjoy food in a restaurant because it’s presented well and it tastes really good,” she says. “But if, at the end of the meal, your pants are too tight and you groan, then the enjoyment is gone. So mindful eating is knowing when to stop so you enjoy what you enjoy.” The ability to know when to stop eating to stay in the state of enjoyment relates to Ratliff’s promotion of being aware of our body’s internal environment. “If we continually eat foods that have an inflammatory effect on our body — like heavily processed foods, foods with a lot of chemical additives, high calorie

foods and industrial seed oils like corn oil and conventionally grown meat — our body responds negatively. If we choose foods that support wellness, it’ll create an environment in our body that engenders health rather than an inflammation response."

Through her business, The Wellness RN, Heather Ratliff advises clients on wellness and functional medicine through healthy eating.

“If we can change the environment, we can change the symptoms,” she affirms. Likewise, KVCC's culinary courses educate future commercial chefs to use more nutritious ingredients — more herbs and less salt, sugar

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Brian Powers

and fat — and more appropriate portions. “A commercial chef prepares a thousand meals a week, easily; he or she impacts a thousand people a week,” says McCurdy. “We teach our student chefs how to cook healthy meals so their customers remain healthy and, at the same time, maintain their skill to make food look pretty. This philosophy improves the health of the whole community.” Future chefs, therefore, learn to use as much fresh, local, good-tasting produce as possible and to season meals with herbs and spices rather than salt, sugar and oils, Barrett says. “Sugar, salt and fat do add flavor to foods, and we should not get rid of those, but there’s a lot more options available—spices, lemon, lime, crunches—to create interesting flavors and textural components,” he says. McCurdy says the program’s emphasis on healthy cooking is critical, since some of the program's graduates will be employed by health care institutions such as hospitals, nursing homes and assisted living facilities. “People there need to have food that’s healthy because their body systems are already compromised, but they want food that tastes good too,” she says. Healthy cooking is actually fairly easy, Barrett says, noting that he favors recipes that he calls “one-pot wonders” — meals prepared with readily accessible ingredients in a single pot, leaving only a few dishes to clean. (See Page 31.) Finding such recipes online is also easy, says Barrett. “Search for keywords ‘quick healthy meals,’” he says. “If you’re in a grocery store or farmers’ market and you see a new vegetable that intrigues you, pull out your smartphone and find recipes that feature that food item.” Similarly, Ratliff advises her clients, “To alter your health, alter your diet.” “After my initial input session with many clients,” Ratliff says, “I tell them, ‘Go home for a month and change your lifestyle. Change your diet. Get more sleep. Exercise more. Reduce stress. Rid your home of toxins. Then come back and see me.’ Invariably, I see amazing changes happen. " “The result of a month of eating only clean foods (unprocessed or minimally processed foods that are as close to their natural form as possible) is fascinating. People experience a change in their whole body.”

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Arts encore

Attention-getting Art

’Stunt painting’ spurred Artist SinGh’s creative career by

Andrew Domino

On South Burdick Street, in the yard

of a house right next to the southern end of Mount Ever-Rest Cemetery, there’s an enormous green object, gradually turning brown from the effects of rain and snow, that looks like a giant has taken a bite out of it. In front of the house there’s a gazebo and a wooden easel as tall as a semi-truck. A bright yellow SUV with the words “Mr. Caution” emblazoned on its side is parked in the driveway. Welcome to the art studio of “Artist SinGh.” Artist SinGh is Gurmej Singh, a painter and sculptor born in India who now lives in Kalamazoo and so far, in the nine-year history of the annual ArtPrize competition, is the only artist to ever be banned from participating in the Grand Rapids event. But Singh was getting noticed for his eyecatching and often-controversial work long before that happened.

34 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Brian Powers

Singh, who won’t give his age, says he has been creating art for decades. As a boy in India, he did what he calls “stunt paintings,” sitting on tree branches or hanging from ropes while wielding a brush because he sold more paintings that way, he says. Evidence of his antics are on his YouTube channel (youtube.com/artistsingh), where one video shows him hanging by his ankles from the roof of the Park Trades Center, in downtown Kalamazoo, painting a canvas as an audience watches from the ground below. The video features plenty of cheering and comments about the spectacle — not about the artwork. Another video shows Singh standing on everything from basketballs to the top of the Fountain of the Pioneers, the controversial statue in Bronson Park, as he paints. As a teen, Singh’s family moved to find work in Dubai, United Arab Emirates,

Brian Powers

Stunt painting


Courtesy

Courtesy

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where he got his first job in the marketing department of Al Nasr Leisureland, an amusement park with everything from video games to an ice rink. Singh says he put his mind for promotion to work, recruiting Leisureland’s engineers and even chefs to help create a winter scene out of Styrofoam to promote the entertainment complex. That was in the mid-1990s. After that, Singh decided he wanted his artistic specialty to be glassblowing, and he moved to the U.S. to attend classes at Emporia State University, in Kansas. After talking with teachers, though, he settled on painting instead and decided to make use of his history as a stunt artist. He decided not to keep hanging on ropes as he painted, though, and sought notoriety in other ways. In 2013, he was recognized by Guinness World Records for the “Largest Painting by an Individual”: It was 11,302 feet, 2.11 inches, or more than two miles, long. The colorful painting of downtown Grand Rapids, displayed at ArtPrize that year, took 38 days to complete, he says. Banned from ArtPrize

Opposite page: Gurmej Singh, who goes by the moniker Artist SinGh, with part of his world-record setting longest painting and the pear/bomb sculpture that adorns his lawn on Burdick Street. Above: Two of his works, Tajmahal, oil on canvas (top), and Holy Cow, LatroArt drawing (bottom).

You can’t see his work at ArtPrize, anymore, however. While planning the epic-sized painting for 2013 ArtPrize, Singh violated a written agreement with the city when his work crossed sidewalks and streets rather than just being confined to the park space he was assigned. That’s according to Kevin Buist, exhibitions director for ArtPrize, who says it was the last in a series of confrontations ArtPrize had with Singh. The year before, another Singh display, a sculpture of Saddam Hussein, was dismantled before ArtPrize even began. It was set to be shown at the B.O.B., a popular restaurant and nightclub, but the establishment’s owner removed it, claiming it was too controversial. Singh later set fire w w w.encorekalamazoo.com | 35


Arts encore

to the sculpture in protest. Buist says Singh is now permanently banned from ArtPrize.

Singh has turned the ban to his advantage, however. He mentions that he’s the “Banned ArtPrize artist” in a section labeled “Fake News” on his website. In September, he selfpublished X The Art Prize, a 112-page book that’s part personal manifesto (he discusses “ArtPrize’s rich and famous backers who can buy media favor”) and part clues to finding $1 million he claims to have hidden in Kent

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County. Specifically, that’s $100,000 in cash and $900,000 in “art collectibles.” The book itself, even as a PDF, sells for $39.99. “My story is incomplete without discussing my ban,” Singh says. He calls the decision by the ArtPrize staff “unfair” but says he’s now spending more time offering private shows to art collectors. The Largest Painting, the work that got him shut out of ArtPrize, has since been split apart and sold to his customers in New York, Dubai and elsewhere.

From top left: Singh’s distinctive “Mr. Caution” SUV is often seen driving around town; Singh stands atop one of his LatroArt drawings on the easel in front of his studio. Opposite page: Sea at Dusk, mixed media, by Artist SinGh.

“Kalamazoo is not my market,” Singh says, noting “there aren’t enough buyers here.” He moved here in 2000 to be close to his brother and his brother’s family. He initially worked out of the Park Trades Center, where he also owned a store called Art of Framing. He says he did that to build his name recognition. In 2003 he earned a business


encore Arts

degree from Western Michigan University. Art of Framing continues now as a framing service at Singh's Burdick Street studio. “Everything is about making money and getting attention,” he says.

work, and his LatroArt, landscapes, sign art and more can be found under both names. Singh school

Creating controversy Thanks to the internet and contacts Singh has developed over decades, he has regular buyers interested in his work, he says, no matter what he does. His work typically sells for between $3,000 and $10,000, he says, depending on what it is and who’s buying. Most of Singh’s paintings are of landscapes, often in reds, oranges and blues. He enjoys using oil paint, but says a lot of his work is done in acrylics or watercolors. He uses inks for his “LatroArt” images, which he describes as drawing and painting using the principles of spider web construction. Singh says he deliberately tries to be controversial and eye-catching simply to build awareness of his art. He leaves his paintings in his front yard when the weather isn’t bad. The green object on his lawn is a massive pear that he wanted to use for a display at ArtPrize. Before it was a pear, it was a large black cartoon bomb: what he calls an “International Peace Bomb,” which was part of an exhibit in Grand Rapids. Now it sits outside waiting for him to figure out what to do with it next.

“You never know what will get you attention,” he says. Speaking of which, what’s with the Mr. Caution car? “That was a branding test in Canada” to increase his audience there, says Singh. “It was inspired by construction sites — the word ‘caution’ is always there.” He used the “Mr. Caution” title to promote his sign art, illustrations made to look like traffic signs (one promotes himself and looks a little like a missing person announcement with the letters “mis” scratched out to leave “sing,” as in “Singh”). Mr. Caution is now another name Singh uses to promote his

Singh calculates he has created some 7,000 artworks in his career. He now has five college-age assistants who help him set up and sometimes paint some of his art. “This is their opportunity to test their skills and find their strengths,” he says. In addition, Singh is following up X The ArtPrize with a second book he’s working on. He expects to call it My Experiments With Art. It will feature two of his favorite subjects — marketing art and developing painting and sculpting skills. He also plans to launch Artist SinGh Academy, where he’ll teach via YouTube videos. Singh hopes to ultimately offer online classes and one-onone coaching, especially in marketing. Marketing for artists requires creative people to tell others what they’re working on and to become comfortable with criticism, he says. “A lot of artists are really good. They just don’t know how to promote themselves,” Singh says. “The commentary (criticism) is going to happen no matter what you do. You just have to live with it.”

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PERFORMING ARTS

MUSIC

THEATER

Bands & Solo Artists

Plays

Yngwie Malmsteen — The electric guitarist performs in his World on Fire Tour, with special guest Sunlord, 8 p.m. Nov. 2, State Theatre, 404 S. Burdick St., 345-6500.

The Crucible — Tony Award-winning drama about the Puritan purge of witchcraft in Salem, Mass., 7:30 p.m. Nov. 2–4, 2 p.m. Nov. 5, Williams Theatre, WMU, 387-6222. Macbeth — Civic Shakespeare Festival tragedy about ambition and betrayal, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 3 & 4, 2 p.m. Nov. 5, Civic Theatre, 329 S. Park St., 343-1313. The Diary of Anne Frank — Farmers Alley Theatre presents the story of a Jewish family in hiding during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, 8 p.m. Nov. 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 & 18; 2 p.m. Nov. 5, 12 & 19; 7:30 p.m. Nov. 9 & 16; Little Theatre, 798 Oakland Drive, 343-2727. The Game's Afoot — An actor assumes the persona of Sherlock Holmes to solve this holiday whodunit, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 10, 11, 16, 17 & 18; 2 p.m. Nov. 19, Shaw Theatre, WMU, 387-6222. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) — An irreverent romp through all 37 plays in 97 minutes, 7 p.m. Nov. 17–18, 2 p.m. Nov. 19, Vicksburg Performing Arts Center, 501 E. Highway St., Vicksburg, 321-1193. The Little Mermaid — Disney family musical about a mermaid who desires to live in the world above the sea, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 17, 18, 24, 25, Dec. 1 & 2; 2 p.m. Nov. 19, 26 & Dec. 3; Civic Theatre, 343-1313. Musicals

A Christmas Carol — Dickens' holiday classic, Nov. 17–Dec. 28, New Vic Theatre, 134 E. Vine St., 381-3328, thenewvictheatre.org. Next Stop, Broadway — WMU Music Theatre students join screen star Stephen Wallem for this cabaret event, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 30–Dec. 2, Williams Theatre, WMU, 387-6222. Other

Brain Candy Live! — TV's Adam Savage and Michael Stevens join forces in an interactive, hands-on theatrical experience, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-2300.

38 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Lando Chill — Rap artist/songwriter, 9 p.m. Nov. 2, Bell's Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., 382-2332. Mechele Peters & 'Til the Cowboys Come Home — Americana and country music, 6 p.m. Nov. 3, Kalamazoo Valley Museum, 230 N. Rose St., 373-7990. Jeff Daniels — Actor, playwright and musician, with special guest the Ben Daniels Band, 8 p.m. Nov. 3, State Theatre, 345-6500. Live Music: Kristen Kuiper — Country singer/ songwriter, 8–10 p.m. Nov. 3, Arcadia Ales Kalamazoo, 701 E. Michigan Ave., 276-0458. Dopapod — Rock and pop band, 9 p.m. Nov. 3, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Kalamashoegazer 11 — Music festival featuring various bands, 4:30 p.m. Nov. 4, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Jonathan Richman — Singer/songwriter and guitarist, 9 p.m. Nov. 9, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Joshua Davis — Folk, rock and soul singer/ songwriter, 9 p.m. Nov. 10, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Second Sundays Live: The Pine Lunch — Blues, bluegrass and Americana music, 2 p.m. Nov. 12, Parchment Community Library, 401 S. Riverview Drive, 343-7747.

Take Me to the River — A documentary celebrating the musical influence of Memphis, 4 p.m. Nov. 12, followed by a live concert featuring Bobby Rush, Charles Musselwhite and others from the film, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 12, State Theatre, 345-6500. The Infamous Stringdusters — Modern bluegrass band, 9 p.m. Nov. 12, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Styx — American rock band, 8 p.m. Nov. 15, State Theatre, 345-6500.

Front Country/Mark Lavengood Trio — Acoustic roots band/bluegrass trio, 9 p.m. Nov. 16, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Carter Lezman — Acoustic folk and pop singer/ songwriter, 6–9 p.m. Nov. 17, Arcadia Ales Kalamazoo, 276-0458.

Live in Central Park (Revisited): Simon & Garfunkel — Recording artists Lee Lessack and Johnny Rodgers recreate the 1981 concert in Central Park, 8 p.m. Nov. 17, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-2300. Aqueous — Groove rock band, 8:30 p.m. Nov. 17, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Breathe Owl Breathe — Acoustic folk and indie rock band, 9 p.m. Nov. 22, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Greensky Bluegrass — With special guest May Erlewine, 8 p.m. Nov. 24 & 25, State Theatre, 345-6500. Young Pioneer — Alternative rock group, 8 p.m. Nov. 25, Bell's Eccentric Café, 382-2332. Orchestra, Chamber, Jazz, Vocal & More Western Winds — Bullock Performance Institute concert, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 1, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. Kevin Vaughn — Michigan Festival of Sacred Music presents the organist with an ensemble from Early Music Michigan, 7 p.m. Nov. 3, St. Augustine Cathedral, 542 W. Michigan Ave., 382-2910. Gold Company Sneak Preview — Featuring WMU vocal jazz ensemble, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 3, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. All-4-One — Grammy Award-winning pop and R&B group performs with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, 8 p.m. Nov. 4, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 349-7759. Kalamazoo Children's Chorus — Premiering "And Joy is Everywhere," by Andrea Ramsey, commissioned by the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music, 2 p.m. Nov. 5, First Presbyterian Church, 321 W. South St., 382-2910. Bronco Marching Band Concert — 3 p.m. Nov. 5, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-2300.


Gilmore Rising Stars Christina & Michelle Naughton — The American pianists perform works for four hands by Ravel and Mendelssohn, 4 p.m. Nov. 5, Wellspring Theater, 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall, 342-1166. Music for the Theater — Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra performs works by Bernstein, Tchaikovsky and Beethoven, 4 p.m. Nov. 5, Chenery Auditorium, 714 S. Westnedge Ave., 337-7407. Pianist Stephen Hough — Fontana presents the pianist performing works by Debussy, Schumann and Beethoven, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 10, Jolliffe Theatre, Epic Center, 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall, 359-7311. Opera: Trial by Jury and An Embarrassing Position — 8 p.m. Nov. 10, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. Gary Stroutsos — "Remembering the Songs," music and lecture featuring Native American flutes, part of the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music, 11 a.m. Nov. 11, Kalamazoo Nature Center, 7000 N. Westnedge Ave., 382-2910. Brahms & Rachmaninoff — Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra features the 2007 International Queen Elisabeth Contest winner, pianist Anna Vinnitskaya, 8 p.m. Nov. 11, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 349-7759. Neshama Carlebach — Grammy-nominated artist who performs Jewish music presents a Community Soul Concert with Kalamazoo's GospelFest Choir, part of the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music, 7 p.m. Nov. 12, Chenery Auditorium, 337-0440.

Saturday, December 9 2 pm and 7 pm

Sunday, December 10

with the

2 pm

Chenery Auditorium Kalamazoo Michigan

Featuring Guest Professional Dancers from

Cincinnati Ballet & Grand Rapids Ballet Kalamazoo Children’s Chorus Reserved seats available for $15 to $22 Miller Auditorium Box Office (269.387.2300) or online at balletartsensemble.org. Group Rates: Special ticket rates available for groups of 20 or more. Fresh flower bouquets by Schafer’s Flowers available at the door while supplies last.

University Symphony Orchestra — 7:30 p.m. Nov. 12, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. Electroacoustic Surround Sound Concert — 7:30 p.m. Nov. 13, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. Dafnis Prieto Sextet — Guest artist recital, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. The Rose Ensemble and Piffaro, The Renaissance Band — Presented by the Kalamazoo Bach Festival and Michigan Festival of Sacred Music to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, 7 p.m. Nov. 15, Chenery Auditorium, 337-7407. Voice of the Whale — Bullock Performance Institute concert, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 15, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300.

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Events encore

The Red Sea Pedestrians, with Dawud Wharnsby — Music, social justice issues and beliefs transcending traditional faiths, part of the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music, 7 p.m. Nov. 16, Dalton Theatre, Kalamazoo College, 382-2910. Pianist Robert Satterlee — Guest artist recital, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 16, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. Big Band Swing Tribute: University Jazz Orchestra and University Jazz Lab Band — 8 p.m. Nov. 17, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. Burdick-Thorne String Quartet — The KSO musicians perform chamber favorites, 11 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. Nov. 19, Sarkozy Bakery, 350 E. Michigan Ave., 349-7759. Descant and Dewey: Holiday Music — Suzuki Academy students perform Nov. 19; clarinetist Dawn Garrett performs Nov. 26; both concerts begin at 2 p.m., Portage District Library, 300 Library Lane, 329-4544. University Symphonic Band and University Concert Band — 3 p.m. Nov. 19, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-4667. Western Horn Choir — 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. Parallax — Guest artist recital, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 21, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. Canadian Brass Christmas — The acclaimed brass quintet performs Christmas favorites, 8 p.m. Nov. 25, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-2300.

Messiah Sing — Professional orchestra and soloists with community participants, 4 p.m. Nov. 26, First Congregational Church, 345 W. Michigan Ave., 382-2910. The Music of Scott Cowan — Bullock Performance Institute concert, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-2300. Contralto Meredith Arwady — Guest artist recital, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 30, Dalton Center Recital Hall, WMU, 387-4667. DANCE Paul Taylor: Dancemaker — WMU Department of Dance presents Paul Taylor's "Esplanade," 8 p.m. Nov. 10, Chenery Auditorium, 714 S. Westnedge Ave., 387-2300. Orchesis Dance Concert — Featuring student work, 8 p.m. Nov. 15–18, 2 p.m. Nov. 18 & 19, Studio B, Dalton Center, WMU, 387-2300. Fall Concert of Dance — Wellspring Cori Terry & Dancers perform, 8 p.m. Nov. 16–18, 2 p.m. Nov. 18, Epic Center, 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall, 342-4354. COMEDY Lewis Black: Rant, White & Blue Tour — The comedian pokes fun at current events, social media and politics, 8 p.m. Nov. 9, State Theatre, 404 S. Burdick St., 345-6500. Trevor Noah — Host of the award-winning The Daily Show on Comedy Central, 8 p.m. Nov. 18, Miller Auditorium, WMU, 387-2300. Crawlspace Eviction: Monopoly — Improv and sketch comedy show inspired by board games, 8

p.m. Nov. 24, Epic Theatre, 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall, 599-7390. VISUAL ARTS Kalamazoo Institute of Arts 314 S. Park St., 349-7775 Exhibits

Women Warriors: Portraits by Hung Liu — Mixed-media, painted and photographic works show the power and perseverance of Chinese women, through Nov. 26. Kirk Newman Art School Faculty Exhibition — Juried exhibition of work by KIA art school faculty, through Dec. 31. Circular Abstractions: Bull's Eye Quilts — Twenty-six quilts in the Bull's Eye pattern, through Jan. 21. Round & Round: The Circle at Center Stage — Works from the KIA collection presenting the circle in myriad manifestations, Nov. 4–March 4. Events Hodgepodge: Making It Happen — Artist and curator Nancy Crow discusses the Circular Abstractions: Bull's Eye Quilts exhibit, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 2, KIA Auditorium. Sunday Tours — Docent-led tours: Circular Abstractions: Bull's Eye Quilts, Nov. 5; Getting to Know You, a look at familiar faces in the KIA collection, Nov. 12; Kirk Newman Art School Faculty Exhibition, Nov. 19; Women Warriors: Portraits by Hung Liu, Nov. 26; all sessions begin at 2 p.m.

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encore Events

ARTbreak — Programs about art, artists and exhibitions: Looking at War Memorials as Art: World War II, Korea, Vietnam, with K. Lynn McFarlen, Nov. 7; The Value of Art in Medicine, with James W. Carter, Nov. 14; History of Art in Three Colors, Episode 1: Gold, documentary, Nov. 21; Introducing the Richmond Product Design and Innovation Institute, with Michael Elwell, Nov. 28; sessions begin at noon, KIA Auditorium.

Annual Faculty Exhibition — Featuring work in a variety of media, Nov. 16–Dec. 10, MonroeBrown Gallery.

Art League Lecture: Daryl Thetford — The artist discusses his images in Psyche Meets Process: The Art of Digital Discovery, 10 a.m. Nov. 8, KIA Auditorium.

Glass Art Gallery Exhibit — Julie Taborn and Sally Pritko display their glass art, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Tues.–Fri., noon–4 p.m. Sat., through Nov. 8, Glass Art Kalamazoo, 326 W. Kalamazoo Ave., Suite 100, 552-9802.

Unreeled: Film at the KIA — The premiere of Atrophy, produced in Michigan, and a discussion with director Jason Slingerland, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 9, KIA Auditorium. Book Discussion: Chasing Portraits: A GreatGranddaughter's Quest for Her Lost Art Legacy — David Senecal leads a discussion of Elizabeth Rynecki's book, 2 p.m. Nov. 15, KIA Library. KIA Holiday Sale — Purchase art created by art school students and faculty, 5–8 p.m. Nov. 30 (Member Night) & Dec. 1, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Dec. 2. Richmond Center for Visual Arts Western Michigan University, 387-2436

The Exquisite Corpse Video Project: Volume 1 — A video collaboration among artists from around the world, through Nov. 5, Atrium Gallery. 17 Days (Volume 10) — One artist's video work per day is played on 50-inch plasma screens, Nov. 6–May 1, Atrium Gallery.

Patricia Villalobos Echeverria: Retrace — The artist documents her projects in Beijing, China; Managua, Nicaragua; and Kalamazoo, Nov. 16– Dec. 10, Netzorg and Kerr Gallery. Other Venues

Division of Birds/Soundscapes and Photographs — An exhibition by Mary Whalen and Sharon Gill merging photographs and recordings, through Nov. 29, Kalamazoo Nature Center, 7000 N. Westnedge Ave., 381-1574. Michael Dunn: Drawing on Words — Graphite works by the artist along with poems by local writers responding to those works, Nov. 3-24, with Art Hop opening 6-9 p.m. Nov. 3, Kalamazoo Book Arts Center, 326 W. Kalamazoo Ave., Suite 103A, 373-4938. Rome the Eternal — Art, architecture and literature from Rome, the Eternal City, 1–3 p.m. Mon., Tues. & Thurs., Nov. 2–16; 5–8 p.m. Nov. 3, Upjohn Library Commons, Kalamazoo College, 337-7147. Josh Gipson's Precision Productions — Nov. 3, Kalamazoo Valley Museum, 230 N. Rose St., 373-7990.

Art Hop — Art at locations around Kalamazoo, 5–8 p.m., Nov. 3, 342-5059. Chuck Bronson: Oils and Watercolors — Nov. 6–Dec. 29, Portage District Library, 300 Library Lane, 329-4544. LIBRARY & LITERARY EVENTS Kalamazoo Public Library First Saturday @ KPL — Family event with stories, activities, special guests and door prizes, 2 p.m. Nov. 4, Central Library, 315 S. Rose St., 342-9837. Jacquelyn Vincenta: Author Visit — A conversation about writing a tale of secrets and mystery, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 6, Oshtemo Branch, 7265 W. Main St., 553-7980. Great Grown-up Spelling Bee — An adult spelling bee to support Ready to Read, 6–9 p.m. Nov. 8, Bernhard Center, WMU, 342-9837. Arduino & Raspberry Pi Club — Beginners and the curious are welcome to learn about Arduino and Raspberry Pi, 6:30–8 p.m. Nov. 9, The Hub, Central Library, 342-9837; registration required. Capoeira Mandinga — The Grand Rapids group demonstrates the Brazilian martial art capoeira, which combines dance, acrobatics and music, 2 p.m. Nov. 11, Central Library, 342-9837. Welcome to Kalamazoo, 1917 — Stroll through a momentous year in Kalamazoo's history, 7 p.m. Nov. 13, Central Library, 342-9837. African American Ballet Demo with Cahl Singleton — 6 p.m. Nov. 14, Alma Powell Branch, 1000 W. Paterson, 553-7960.

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Events encore 40th Annual Mary Calletto Rife Youth Literature Seminar — Featuring four awardwinning authors: Mitali Perkins, Gary Schmidt, Javaka Steptoe and Matt Faulkner, 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m. Nov. 16–17, Fetzer Center, WMU, kpl.gov/yls. Meet the Authors — Mitali Perkins, Gary Schmidt, Javaka Steptoe and Matt Faulkner speak about their work and what inspires them to write youth literature, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 16, Central Library, 342-9837. Parchment Community Library 401 S. Riverview Drive, 343-7747 Meet Your Muslim Neighbors — A celebration of Muslim cultures hosted by Parchment churches, Kalamazoo Islamic Center and Bilal Islamic Center, 4–6 p.m. Nov. 5, Parchment United Methodist Church, 225 Glendale Blvd. Parchment Book Group — Discussion of A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towles, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 6. Yum's the Word — Caterer Candace Strong demonstrates tasty holiday appetizers, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 8; registration required. Front Page: Donuts and Discussion — Discussion on “Refugees and How We Can Help,” with Meagan Roche from Welcoming Michigan, 10:30 a.m. Nov. 18. Monthly Mystery Book Club — Discussion of Sweet Revenge, by Diane Mott Davidson, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 20. Soap Making with Aylamethyst Soaps — Learn how to make scented soaps and start a small business, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 30.

42 | Encore NOVEMBER 2017

Portage District Library 300 Library Lane, 329-4544

MUSEUMS

Kalamazoo Valley Museum Murder on the Orient Express — Discussion of 230 N. Rose St., 373-7990 the book by Agatha Christie, along with a police Two Small Pieces of Glass — How telescopes officer's experience as an investigator, 7 p.m. reveal the universe, 2 p.m. Sat., 3 p.m. Tues. & Nov. 2. Thurs., through Nov. 21, Planetarium. Fall in Love with Michigan Authors: Jacquelyn The First Stargazers — Learn how early Vincenta — The author discusses The Lake and the stargazers made predictions using the sky, 3 p.m. Lost Girl, 2 p.m. Nov. 4. Sun., Mon., Wed., Fri. & Sat. through Nov. 22, SciFi/Fantasy Discussion: Formidable Aliens — Planetarium. 7 p.m. Nov. 6. Guitar: The Instrument That Rocked the World International Mystery Book Group — Discussion — Exhibit with hands-on experiences, through of Crimson Snow, edited by Martin Edwards, 7 Jan. 7. p.m. Nov. 9. Hateful Things — Exhibit examining the history Fall in Love with Michigan Authors: Mystery of racism to help promote racial healing, through Writer Panel — Hear from five successful mystery Jan. 14. authors about their inspirations and writing Wind Energy, with Tom Sutton — Learn about processes, noon–3 p.m. Nov. 11. wind power use, 1:30 p.m. Nov. 12, Stryker Top Shelf Reads — Discussion of Evicted, by Theater. Michael Desmond, 7 p.m. Nov. 13, Latitude 42 Lecia Brooks, Southern Poverty Law Center Brewing Co., 7842 Portage Road, 585-8711. — Discussing how the center fights hate, teaches Open for Discussion — Discussion of West of tolerance and seeks justice, 10:30 a.m. Nov. 18. Sunset, by Stewart O'Nan, 10:30 a.m. Nov. 21. Season of Light — How candles, Christmas trees Other Venues and Santa Claus became holiday traditions, 11 Gwen Frostic Reading Series — Playwright a.m. Mon.–Fri., 1 p.m. Sat., 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 24– Reginald Edmund, Nov. 2; authors and poets Dec. 31, Planetarium. Gail Wronsky and Chuck Rosenthal, Nov. 9; Mystery of the Christmas Star — A scientific both sessions begin at 7 p.m., Rooms 157–159, explanation for the star the wise men followed, 3 Bernhard Center, WMU, 387-2572. p.m. Sun., Mon., Wed., Fri. & Sat. Nov. 24–Dec. 23, Poetry Reading: Z.G. Tomaszewski and Kaveh Planetarium. Akbar — 7–8:30 p.m. Nov. 17, Kalamazoo Book Arts Center, 326 W. Kalamazoo Ave., Suite 103A, 373-4938.


encore Events Kalamazoo's Influenza Epidemic of 1918, with Sharon Ferraro — How Kalamazoo fared during this national epidemic, 1:30 p.m. Nov. 26, Stryker Theater.

Kalamazoo Numismatic Club Fall Coin Show — Buy, sell and trade coins, paper money and memorabilia, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Nov. 4, Kalamazoo County Expo Center North, 381-8669.

Holiday Art Show and Sale — Fine-quality art by Art Etc. and the Kalamazoo Valley Potters, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 18, Second Reformed Church, 2323 Stadium Drive, kazooartsale.com.

NATURE

Kalamazoo Craft Beer Festival — Beer tasting, specialty tappings and keg curling, 1–6 p.m. Nov. 4, Wings Event Center, 3600 Vanrick Drive, 345-1125.

Holiday Expo & Craft Show — Michigan vendors and crafters, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 18, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 19, Kalamazoo County Expo Center, 903-5820.

West Michigan Harvest Cluster AKC Dog Show — Conformation, obedience and rally trials, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 9–10, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Nov. 11–12, Kalamazoo County Expo Center, 616-706-2314.

Kalamazoo Reptile & Exotic Pet Expo — Buy, sell or trade reptiles, amphibians and small mammals, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Nov. 18, Kalamazoo County Expo Center Room A, 779-9851.

Kalamazoo Holiday Parade — Marching bands, holiday-themed floats and giant balloons, 11 a.m. Nov. 11, downtown Kalamazoo, 387-8191.

Kalamazoo's Holiday Vintage Mini-Market — Antiques, vintage and home décor, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 19, Kalamazoo County Expo Center, 903-5820.

Kellogg Bird Sanctuary 12685 East C Ave., Augusta, 671-2510 Owl Prowl — A nighttime walk to listen for owls, 6 p.m. Nov. 3. Fall Migration Celebration — Identify the waterfowl at Wintergreen Lake and participate in activities along the trail, 1–4 p.m. Nov. 5. Birds and Coffee Walk — A morning bird walk and discussion over coffee, 9–10:30 a.m. Nov. 8. Other Venues Fall Family Campfire and Owl Prowl — Learn how animals prepare for winter, meet an owl and take a hike, 6–7:30 p.m. Nov. 9, Schrier Park, 850 W. Osterhout Road, Portage, 329-4522. Audubon Society of Kalamazoo — Ed Post speaks on "Those Amazing Birds," 7:30 p.m. Nov. 27, People's Church, 1758 N. 10th St., 375-7210. MISCELLANEOUS Kalamazoo in Bloom: The Great Pumpkin Soiree — Fundraiser featuring area chefs and restaurants, 6–8 p.m. Nov. 1, Cityscape Event Center, 125 S. Kalamazoo Mall, kalamazooinbloom. org; registration required. Christmas Boutique Arts & Crafts Show — Artisans and crafters from throughout the Midwest, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Nov. 4, Kalamazoo County Expo Center South, 2900 Lake St., 327-5373.

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid — The 1969 film shown in the Movie Down Memory Lane Series, 8 p.m. Nov. 11, State Theatre, 404 S. Burdick St., 345-6500. Kalamazoo Indoor Flea & Antique Market — New and used items, antiques and handcrafted items, 8 a.m.–2 p.m. Nov. 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 & 29, Kalamazoo County Expo Center North, 383-8761. Weavers and Fiber Artists Sale — Handwoven items, hand-spun yarn, gifts and ornaments, 5–8 p.m. Nov. 16, 9 a.m.–8 p.m. Nov. 17, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Nov. 18, Kalamazoo County Expo Center North, 383-8778.

Holiday Walk & Market — Tour the decorated W.K. Kellogg Manor House and buy handcrafted gifts, noon–5 p.m. Nov. 24, 3700 E. Gull Lake Drive, Hickory Corners, 671-2400. Tree Lighting Ceremony — Lighting of Kalamazoo's Christmas trees, 5–7:30 p.m. Nov. 24, Bronson Park, kzooparks.org. Kalamazoo Antique Toy Show — Antique, vintage and collectible toys, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. Nov. 25, Kalamazoo County Expo Center South, 262-366-1314.

Kick-Off Classic Synchronized Skating Competition — Skating competition featuring over 130 teams from the U.S. and Canada, Nov. 17–19, Wings Event Center, 345-1125.

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INDEX TO ADVERTISERS

American Red Cross . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 AppleTree & Gilden Woods Preschool . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36 Arborist Services of Kalamazoo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

LISTEN. SUPPORT. SUSTAIN.

Ballet Arts Ensemble . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Better World Builders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Betzler Funeral Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Bravo! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Bronson Health Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Clear Ridge Wealth Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Constance Brown Hearing Centers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Dave’s Glass Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 DeMent and Marquardt, PLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 DeNooyer Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 DeVisser Landscape Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

WMUK

Fence & Garden . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

102.1

First National Bank . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Food Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Four Roses Café . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Gilmore Real Estate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Great Lakes Shipping Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Greenleaf Trust . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Halls, Closets & More . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

WMUK IS NPR FROM WMU

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BACK STORY (continued from page 46)

should have an African-American Historical Society” and corralled some friends into working with me to start the organization. We became the Southwest Michigan Black Heritage Society in 2003. But in 2015, we realized we had been doing a lot in the area of racial equity. We were very involved in bringing the exhibit RACE: Are We So Different? to the museum and had done a lot to promote the exhibit and bring people together across racial lines. We decided to make racial equity part of our mission. Since then, we’ve had the dual mission of researching and celebrating the history of African-Americans and promoting racial equity. We decided we needed to change our name to reflect the change in our mission, and also because it was impossible to have an acronym with the Southwest Michigan Black Heritage Society (she laughs). So we adopted the name of Society for History and Racial Equity, which gave us SHARE. What is SHARE’s mission? Our mission is based on the idea that in order to heal racially, all groups have to be part of that effort. We all have wounds from racism and coming from slavery, and all of us have to work together to do any kind of healing. We have four areas we focus on: facing history, which is to help people see how we got to where we are; making connections across racial and ethnic barriers; racial healing; and taking action.

What do you do in these four focus areas? We have full-day racial healing retreats where our facilitators get people to work towards not just community transformation but personal transformation as well. We also do workshops on facing history. We make connections through all of our efforts because our audience is usually made up of whites, blacks, Hispanics, and we try to bring everyone in. We have our annual Summit on Racism in November, and then we’ve added a Youth Summit on Racism that happens in the spring. What happens at the Summit on Racism? We’re calling this year’s summit "#StayWokeKzoo,” and the theme is The Rise of Hate in America. This year we have our first keynote speaker, Lecia Brooks of the Southern Poverty Law Center, who will talk about the work of SPLC and about hate groups in Michigan. We’ll also have several breakout sessions, including sessions on Islamophobia, DACA (the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy that was rescinded in September by President Trump), racial healing and transformation, and intersectionality, which will concentrate on LBGTQ issues. Those topics are incredibly timely. We try to be as timely as we can. One of our board members once said, “People don’t want to talk about this stuff,” but we have

found that, yes, they do, and they really welcome the opportunity to do so. People are very interested in finding out what they can do and wanting to know more. How would you describe the current racial environment in Kalamazoo? I think most people don’t realize that African-Americans think about race all the time. When I was a student at Kalamazoo College, there were three African-Americans in my class. At K, I saw for the first time that there were people who could live their lives and never think about race. That really stood out to me. When I came back in 1993, it didn’t seem to have changed a whole lot, even though a lot of time had passed. That’s why I knew an organization like ours was needed and necessary. I do see some change now. I see people who are really trying to “get woke” and want to do something to make a difference. What is your proudest accomplishment? The fact that the organization has sustained itself, and that it is at its strongest right now. I’ve seen other things come and go, but we have a good, working board and partner a lot with other local organizations that have been very loyal and supportive. What keeps you up at night? Wanting to feel like we are making a difference and thinking about what it’s going to take from one day to the next to continue making a difference.

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BACK STORY encore

Donna Odom

Executive Director, Society for History and Racial Equity (SHARE) W

hen Odom graduated from Kalamazoo College a few decades ago, she thought her life would involve doing something with her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in French. Instead, she initially found herself with a career as an instructor and administrator in higher education in Chicago. Then in 1993, seeking a simpler life, she and her husband, Al, moved back to Kalamazoo. Odom began looking for a job, and in the effort to fill out an application to work as a substitute teacher, she went in search of a typewriter and found an entirely new career. How did you end up at SHARE? Moving here in 1993, I thought I wouldn’t have to work a real job again but quickly learned differently. One day I went to the Kalamazoo Public Library — this will show you how long ago it was — because I needed a typewriter to fill out an application for substitute teaching. I ran into Elspeth Inglis, assistant director at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum, which was on the third floor of the library at the time, and asked if they had a typewriter and told her why I needed one. She told me about a part-time job that was open at the museum. I got that job and then took a full-time position there working in education and doing history projects. I was doing a project on the Underground Railroad, which got me really interested in the history of AfricanAmericans in Southwest Michigan. I thought, “We Brian Powers

(continued on page 45)

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Encore November 2017  

Southwest Michigan's Magazine: Food is Good Medicine, One Well Brewing, area podcasters are talking, controversy and creativity with Artist...