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Holiday Gift Guide

G

et that special weirdo in your life something just as unique as them this holiday

season. Not sure where to start? Check out our Gift Guide, where we pair up great West Michigan offerings with nearly two dozen personality types. Spend time with your special buddy by indulging in some of the best entertainment West Michigan has to offer. Read on for more. I l l u s t r at e d b y Anthony Carpenter

gift ideas for your favorite‌ 26 Artist 27 Bar Star 10 Beer Snob

16 12 18 20 6 21 22 30 28 2

Bookworm Bro Buzzkill Eccentric Fashionista Film Buff Foodie Hippie Hoarder Intellectual

14 4 3 8 15 9 33 24 32 34

Man of Leisure Music Junkie Outdoorsy Parent Pop Culture Nerd Social Butterfly Sporty Survivalist Thespian Vintage


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Guide

Intellectual

Intellectuals wear their smarty pants seven days a week. Favoring culture, obscure facts and hearty tomes of important literature, the intellectual in your life has mastered the deeper world found beyond LOLcats. B y A u d r i a L a r s e n

What would your Intellectual be without an IQ affirming, rollicking debate? The Center for Inquiry Michigan seeks to “foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values.” Take your hotshot intellectual out to one of the many CFI gatherings hosted monthly, all over the state, such as Skeptics in the Pub on Dec. 21 at Brewery Vivant.

event is free, so you won’t break the bank when you treat your intellectual to a night of big sound and hearty Michigan brews.

Do

Founders Brewing Company 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids foundersbrewing.com, (616) 776-1195

Wine and dine with your favorite erudite friend at Butch’s Dry Dock. Currently holding the Wine Spectator’s Best Award of Excellence, Butch’s offers fine cuisine crafted with drink pairings in mind. Get your lively political conversation going at lunchtime with sandwiches like The Democrat (turkey pastrami, Swiss, honey mustard, and house-made coleslaw grilled on rye for $6.99) and The Republican (oven roasted turkey, muenster cheese, Dijon mustard, and house-made coleslaw grilled on rye for $7.49). You can debate the price difference. Also, many seasonal items are offered, culled from local suppliers.

Skeptics in the Pub Brewery Vivant, Grand Rapids Dec. 21, 6 p.m. cfimichigan.org (616) 698-2342

Muse on the finer points of brewing techniques and beer flavors with your Intellectual at Odd Side Ales. This tiny-butdedicated brewery specializes in artisan brews and team trivia nights that let you show off your brainiac side. “We’ve got some heated battles down here. We have some clever people come down,” said Erik Frederiksen, bar manager. Go lowbrow with your drink of choice and try Morning Wood, a coffee stout with vanilla, oak, whiskey, chocolate and espresso flavors. While you’re at it, a mug club membership makes a great gift. $75 gets your special someone a personalized mug along with a year membership. Or, really show your love with a lifetime membership for $225.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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Odd Side Ales 41 Washington Ave. Suite 160, Grand Haven oddsideales.com, (616) 935-7326

The stereotypical Intellectual loves jazz. And why not? It’s a perfect marriage between cool and wickedly smart. Ask any jazz-head about Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew and you’ll learn a thing or two. Twice a month (first and third Sundays), Founders Brewing Company hosts the Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra, described as a “16 piece powerhouse.” The

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Butch’s Dry Dock 44 East Eight St, Holland butchs.net, (616) 396-8227

Intellectuals like nights in, too. When reading War and Peace gets dull, there is always the boob tube. Give the gift of film with Federico Fellini’s 8 ½ (1963). Flashbacks and dream states are woven throughout this avant-garde cinema classic. The story explores discussion worthy themes and goes smoothly with a nice bottle of wine. You can nab a copy at Schuler Books & Music for $19.99 and grab choice vino at Martha’s Vineyard in Grand Rapids.

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Schuler Books and Music Various Grand Rapids locations schulerbooks.com Martha’s Vineyard 200 Union Ave. NE, Grand Rapids mvwines.com, (616) 459-0911


Outdoorsy

They can’t sit still for one second, and forget about trying to make them stay inside long enough to watch a movie. This is your Mother Nature-loving friend, who would rather be enjoying the great outdoors than cozying up on the couch. B y J e s s i c a Sm i t h

Beak out the winter gear and head to Pando Winter Sports Complex to get some snow action, whether it’s downhill skiing and snowboarding, cross country skiing or tubing. Bundle up and perfect your best Shaun White impressions. We won’t laugh if you wipe out. Lift tickets and tubing rates range $11-$20, cross country ranges $5-$10 and ski and snowboard rentals range $7-$20.

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Whether they’re trekking through the woods or hiking up hillsides, two-time Texaco Country Showdown state champs and national recording artist Kris Hitchcock and Small Town Son has enough twang to keep your outdoorsy friend motivated. This Michigan-based country band sings about life experiences as Kris turns life’s moments into Midwest rock anthems.

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Pando Winter Sports Park 8076 Belding Rd. NE, Rockford pandopark.com, (616) 874-8343

Kris Hitchcock and Small Town Son krishitchcockmusic.com

Get it while you can, because once it’s gone you’ll have to wait until next year for your chance to get it again. As part of its Holiday Stout Series, Dark Horse Brewing Company is releasing its Fore Smoked Stout in January, which is sure to delight your grizzly friend. The stout is brewed with smoked malt to create a great taste embodied with chocolate, roasted barley flavors and a smoky, almost barbecue-like aftertaste.

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Dark Horse Brewing Company 511 S. Kalamazoo Ave., Marshall darkhorsebrewery.com, (269) 781-9940

Coyote Café Bar and Grille 380 Douglas Ave., Holland (616) 396-2355

Grand Rapids Griffins at Van Andel Arena 130 Fulton St. West, Grand Rapids $14-$32 for dollar beers, dollar dogs night griffinshockey.com, (616) 742-6600

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Your nature lover has to face it, sometimes they’re going to have to go inside. But grabbing some hearty grub at The Coyote Café Bar and Grille can make it easier for them to cope. The bar is a great place to thaw out from the freezing Michigan weather and still enjoy an outdoor atmosphere in this cabin-themed setting. Even though they didn’t hunt it themselves, there’s no doubt they’ll appreciate eating Coyote’s “famous” fresh lake perch or prime rib, while surrounded by wildlife-filled walls.

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You can’t go wrong with a Grand Rapids Griffins hockey game. You might be inside, but the cool temps will play mind games with your outdoor guru. On Friday nights, feel free to over indulge yourself with dollar beers and dogs because, well, they’re only a buck. After your night in at the Griffins game, take your outdoorsy buddy to their natural habitat and try to imitate those hockeyplayer moves at the Rosa Parks Circle Ice Rink.

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Rosa Parks Circle Ice Rink Monroe Avenue and Pearl Street, Downtown Grand Rapids Skate rental free with ID, ice time $1 per person

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Music Junkie

Signs of addiction: Facebooking obscure YouTube videos, sharing indie-rock faves on Spotify, tweeting photos from live shows, trumpeting local up-and-coming bands, championing vinyl, living and breathing the beat. B y J o h n S i n k e v i c s

For true music connoisseurs, it’s all about vinyl. The retro trend continues in earnest, with hip acts issuing new releases first in flat and black (or wild colors). Indeed, Vertigo Music’s Herm Baker says vinyl now makes up 75 percent of store sales, with most buyers in their college years. Flipping through the latest CDs is a bonus, though there’s nothing like the tactile pleasure of browsing rarities in record bins, especially when you’ve got a gift certificate in hand.

The Cottage Bar 18 La Grave Ave. SE, Grand Rapids cottagebar.biz, (616) 454-9088

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One Trick Pony Grill & Taproom 136 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids onetrick.biz, (616) 235-7669

A symptom of music addiction? Reveling in eclectic charm. So what better fix than West Michigan’s Ultraviolet Hippopotamus, a fivesome of uber-talented musicians whose jam-band wizardry concocts a dance-happy stew of prog-rock, bluegrass, funk, reggae and more? Bestow your music junkie with The Broomhilda Suite EP (UV Hippo’s at work on a full-length album) and tickets to its New Year’s Eve show at Kalamazoo’s Bell’s Brewery.

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Vertigo Music 129 S. Division Ave., Grand Rapids vertigomusiconline.com, (616) 742-5106 Corner Record Shop 1710 W. Mains St., Kalamazoo cornerrecordskzoo.com, (269) 381-0218

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Scarfing the latest microbrew doesn’t take much effort these days with Michigan-made marvels offered near and far. Consider something different in a unique West Side watering hole that caters to roots-music devotees. Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill proprietor Ted Smith says shots of Fireball cinnamon whisky are a favorite among folks soaking up live — local and national — rockabilly, Americana, honky-tonk country, blues and throwback rock ‘n’ roll. As for beer: Hamm’s or Rolling Rock, in keeping with the retro theme.

Ultraviolet Hippopotamus Bell’s Eccentric Café, Kalamazoo Dec. 31, 9:30 p.m. Price TBD bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332

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Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill 760 Butterworth St. SW, Grand Rapids (616) 272-3910

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For live holiday music with an ear-splitting twist, it doesn’t get bigger or glitzier than symphonic rock’s Trans-Siberian Orchestra, which brings its new “The Lost Christmas Eve” production to Van Andel Arena Dec. 7. Other unique ways to get a music junkie in a festive mood: The Musical Box’s re-creation of Genesis’ classic “The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway” at The Orbit Room Dec. 14 or The Verve Pipe’s Christmas show at The Intersection Dec. 22. Waiting till Christmas to get that package unwrapped? Consider tickets to Mustard Plug’s high-octane holiday hoopla at The Intersection Dec. 30.

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Burgers may come and go, but the Cottage burger at Grand Rapids’ The Cottage Bar is forever. The city’s oldest establishment also has served as downtown’s defacto post-theater, post-show rendezvous spot for many moons, so you never know who you might bump into. To up the cuisine ante, Dan Verhil also owns next door’s One Trick Pony, which boasts live acoustic performances on Thursday, Saturday and the occasional Monday.

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New YeARS eve DeCeMBeR 31 9 PM KALAMAzOO STATe THeATRe

The Red Sea Pedestrians & The Corn Fed Girls present

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band & Abbey Road Live! kazoostate.com • rsp-cfg.com • theredseapedestrians.com • thecornfedgirls.com

Tickets available at the State Theatre Box Office and TicketMaster General Admission $23 Day of Show $25

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule REVUEWM.COM | December 2012 |

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Fashionista

This impressionable gal hangs with BFFs like Louis (Vuitton), Ralph (Lauren) and Giorgio (Armani). B y M i s s y B l a c k

The Fashionista never turns down a mimosa or the chance to shop. Every third Saturday of the month from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., retail stores in Kalamazoo woo shoppers and the fashionable with the chance to sip, stroll and shop with Mimosa Mornings. “It’s a good chance to come downtown with girlfriends,” says i heart ipanema owner Nicole Angelo. Other participating shops include Bella Patina, Garden Gate Café, Loved Boutique, Sydney, Your Home, Cakes Boutique, Terrapin World Imports, Retro, Sticks & Stones and Tudor House Tea.

Do

i heart ipanema 115 W. Lovell, Kalamazoo (269) 382-4423

Ordering a beet margarita at Trillium Haven is a risk for sure, and nobody understands that more than the Fashionista. Taking chances on trendy clothing and hair color, this character goes out on a limb. The beet margarita, designed by the bar chefs, is a mash-up of tequila, Cointreau, lemon, lime and pickled beet juice. “Beets are a liver cleanser. It’s recycling, using stuff from the kitchen in the bar,” says owner Anja Mast. It’s the restaurant’s farm-to-table take on the classic margarita. “It’s different but refreshing … I’ve been working for the past 11 years for people to eat this stuff. Now, it’s trendy and popular.” Trendy, popular — that’s the definition of our girl.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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Trillium Haven 1429 Lake Drive, Grand Rapids trilliumhaven.com, (616) 301-0998

Though The Wealthy Orphans sound like a new clothing line from the Olsen twins, it’s actually a band based out of Grand Rapids “playing music forged in the heat of real life,” according to member Rick Beerhorst. Songs are filled with rusted fenders, slamming screen doors and pretty

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girls — enter the Fashionista. Passionate background music for online shopping or painting her toes, the Orphans give our designer dame more style cred, because being fashionable isn’t achieved with clothing alone — it’s a state of mind. wealthyorphans.com

Stiletto Sweets is a made-toorder cake and cupcake operation named after a woman’s love for shoes and fashion. The Stiletto Sweets experience can be described as “playful, sophisticated, sexy and polished,” said Noddea Skidmore, owner and cake stylist. From genderreveal cakes to Chanel-inspired sweets in pale pinks, blacks and grays topped with a string of pearls, Skidmore oozes charm and style with each application of sugar dust.

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Stiletto Sweets stilettosweets.com

The Fashionista can turn any event into a runway show. Beauty and the Beast is a classic musical love story, but also an eye-popping spectacle. The pretty and plucky young Belle is easy on the eyes and the lavish sets and costumes are just what our style maven wants to see. “There are 580 costume pieces in the production, some from the original Broadway production,” says Meghan Distel, director of marketing and public relations. “81 wigs are used in the production, so there’s so much to look at and so much detail.”

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Beauty and the Beast DeVos Performance Hall, Grand Rapids Dec. 26-30, show times at 1, 2, 6:30 7:30 p.m. $57-$67 broadwaygrandrapids.com, (616) 235-6285


Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Find us on Facebook and Twitter! Revue on Facebook: facebook.com/REVUEWM On Twitter: @RevueWM

Win tickets, get early warnings about shows, other breaking entertainment news, and more! REVUEWM.COM | December 2012 |

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Parent

Parents are hardcore. They make a mean Easy Bake Oven cake and can whip up an A+ science project in less than five minutes. Here’s to the bunch that functions on less sleep and can order time outs and take out in one breath. B y M i s s y B l a c k

Grand Rapids Public Museum’s Thank You, BEER! exhibition is just what parents need: time away and beer. “The language used, the artifacts on display, programming is directed at adults,” said Collections Curator Alex Forist. “We tried to make the exhibit friendly and approachable. It’s meant to be lighthearted and fun.” Learn about the ingredients and chemistry of brewing, cultural contributions of beer, the failure of prohibition and the role of beer in pop culture. Extra programming includes Beer School, a series of Thursday evening classes with special speakers on beer-related topics, as well as Hoppy Hour Tastings every Tuesday.

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Thank You, Beer! Grand Rapids Public Museum Through Dec. 30 $8 grmuseum.org, (616) 456-3977

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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Parents love everything homemade and Public uses the from-scratch philosophy in everything. Public’s ginger ale is a mighty mix of fresh ginger-infused simple syrup combined with fresh limes, club soda and some lime zest for a thrilling drink that’s got a “fresh, light bite,” according to Owner Lucas Grill. Forget preservatives and high fructose corn syrup. At Public, they’re all about fresh ingredients. “We buy meat and we grind it in-house everyday. Everything on our menu is made from scratch and we felt the beverage program should mirror that.”

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Public 131 E. Main St., Zeeland publiczeeland.com, (616) 741-9772

Parents like sweet and approachable. The sounds of Karisa Wilson are both. The award-winning, singer songwriter writes and performs a blend of indie pop, jazz and blues. Listen to her latest release, Stronger, or check out a show Dec. 28 at Odd Side Ales in Grand Haven. And when little Sally asks for piano lessons you can have a good example in mind of how far music can take some gals.

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Karisa Wilson karisawilson.com

Much like an escaped fugitive, parents are always on the run. Shuttling offspring to and from school and extracurricular activities means food on the go. Pick up some premium frozen yogurt treats at Sweet Yo’s. Indulge with yogurt flavors ranging from Bubble Gum and French Toast to Red Velvet Cake and Lemon Custard. Top that off with more than 50 fun toppings of fruit, cereal, sauce or candy crumbles.

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Sweet Yo’s 2180 Wealthy SE and 134 Monroe Center NW, Grand Rapids sweetyos.com

Every third Friday parents get a night off, thanks to the Furry Friday Films series at the Humane Society of West Michigan. Kids enjoy animal interactions, pizza, popcorn and an animal-themed movie all for $25 (with a $10 sibling discount). On Dec. 21, from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. there’s a good time for all as children get a chance to meet other animal lovers, lounge in their pajamas and do something out of the ordinary on a Friday night.

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Humane Society of West Michigan 3077 Wilson Dr., Grand Rapids hswestmi.org, (616) 791-8066


Social Butterfly

The Social Butterfly always has an agenda. They accept every invite as a challenge. Like a butterfly flitting between flowers, the socialite goes from one thing (party, restaurant opening, lecture, wine sampling…) to the next. B y M i s s y B l a c k

The Social Butterfly will certainly see you at The Holiday Bar on Dec. 13. The Social Charity Club of Grand Rapids is on hand for schmoozing at its finest. Sipping the night away, our resident socialite will find this night perfect for the holidays. The event is “incredibly flexible,” and open any time between 5:30 and 9 p.m. “Social Butterflies tend to double book and struggle with a specific start and end time for an event and that might deter them from going,” said Board Member Chelsea Slocum. A $10 donation gets you a complimentary drink and quality mingling.

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The Holiday Bar 801 5th St. NW, Grand Rapids theholidaybargr.com, (616) 456-9058

A personality test disguised as a wine tasting, Vinely gatherings take the guesswork out of tastings, “making wine accessible to all in a comfortable, stress-free environment that simplifies the tasting process in a fun, unique and innovative way,” says Vinely CEO Bill Wittenberg. In-home parties allow guests to try different wines and rate them based on their personal tastes and preferences. Vinely staff will determine each taster’s wine “personality” by using exclusive Vinely methodology. In a nutshell: your mom had Tupperware parties and you have wine. Upgrade!

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The Crane Wives is a homegrown indiefolk outfit that sort of defies musical stereotypes. Live shows are said to swell with contagious energy and original music that ranges from whisper-quiet ballads to danceable grooves. Oh, and the socialite always has plans for New Year’s Eve. This year, it’s a Crane Wives show at Founders featuring The Ragbirds and Lindsay Lou and the Flatbellys.

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The small bites dessert section on The Wine Loft’s menu is where you get to choose three of the following: a Pumpkin Cream Cake Pop, Pomegranate Orange Cake Truffle, Rocky Rhode Island Bars or the Pistachio Kirsch Truffle. Allergy issues? Not a problem! Try Marshmallow Cups and a Carrot Ginger Orange Minicupcake (both gluten, dairy, egg and nut free). Read the wine list and you could be here all night. But hey, that’s how the socialite likes it: nibbles, wine and good conversation.

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The Wine Loft 161 East Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo millenniumrestaurants.com/loft, (269) 343-9227

With packed schedules, choosing what to do and where to go comes down to how you can experience as much as possible. Try The Nutcracker at Miller Auditorium — you get exposure to two local and talented organizations in one evening. The performance features the sights of the Grand Rapids Ballet Company and the sounds of the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra. “We are drawing from the talent we have in the community to fulfill people’s holiday traditions,” says Assistant Director of Marketing Bethany Gauthier. Dates are Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 9 at 3 p.m.

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Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

vinely.com

Miller Auditorium 2200 Auditorium Dr., Kalamazoo millerauditorium.com, (269) 387-2300

The Crane Wives thecranewives.com

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BEER SNOB

The Beer Snob always finds time for a beer. They search the shelves for anything they haven’t had before, and go out of their way for a superior pint. Coors? What’s that? B y B e n D a r c i e

Bell’s Brewing Company continues its Brew Demo Series on Dec. 19 at the General Store in Kalamazoo, giving aspiring homebrewers and beer enthusiasts the opportunity to watch the bottling of last month’s batch, as well as brew this month’s new holiday beer for January. “We encourage people to participate and ask questions,” said David Curtis, general manager of the General Store. “Grab a beer from the bar and hang out.” This month’s session starts at 6 p.m. and is a great opportunity for your Snob to have a hands-on experience with brewing.

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Bell’s General Store 355 East Kalamazoo Avenue, Kalamazoo bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Our Brewing Company opened its doors in Holland at the end of October and is the perfect place to take your Beer Snob on a brewery visit. The pub is warm and rustic, and the beer varies from experimental to classic American standards, including a Toasted Coconut Porter, a Coffee Stout and Saint Celiac’s Gluten Free Belgian Tripel. “Our space is meant for people to feel like they belong,” Coowner and Assistant Brewer Trevor Doublestein said. “That’s why it’s called ‘Our’ Brewing Co., we want people to feel like it’s their brewery and our brewery.”

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Our Brewing Company 76 E. 8th Street, Holland ourbrewingcompany.com, (231) 838-0638

The Soil and the Sun is a Grand Rapidsbased experimental folk-rock outfit that is great to experience alongside your favorite brew. The music is immersive and deep, with

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bold harmonies and a percussive presence that will keep your jaw on the floor. Watch your Beer Snob’s glass mysteriously empty itself as they groove themselves into oblivion. The Soil & the Sun thesoilandthesun.com

Kalamazoo’s Central City Taphouse offers two environments for your Beer Snob, a restaurant side and the pub side. Both have exceptional fare for your Snob, with the pub side offering modern twists on classic pub fare. The Taphouse also has an international tap tower, which is filled with rare droughts, and a national tower featuring the best beer from across the nation.

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Central City Taphouse 359 South Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo millenniumrestaurants.com/centralcity-tap-house, (269) 492-0100

Head over to Billy’s Lounge on Dec. 21 to catch Donald Kinsey bring some holiday blues to your Beer Snob’s season. Kinsey is most known for his place in The Wailers, Bob Marley’s band, and has also toured with legends such as Albert King, Peter Tosh and Roy Buchanan. As for beer, Billy’s features many Michigan brews for your Snob to choose from in bottles and on draft. The show is $5, and starts at 9:30 p.m.

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Billy’s Lounge 1437 Wealthy Street SE, Grand Rapids billyslounge.com, (616) 459-5757


BEER NUTS... PEANUT BUTTER STOUT

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

DECEMBER’S SEASONAL CRAFT BEERS: Calgacus Scotch Ale Spooky Action Double IPA SpaceBoy Stout Try all of our craft beers on tap! THE B.O.B. 20 Monroe Ave. • Grand Rapids 616.356.2000 • www.thebob.com

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BRO

Barney Stinson is their hero. Daily activities include copious amounts of beer, sports and partaking in anything designed to prove one’s manliness. B y J e n n i f e r C u f f m a n

Beer is a fundamental part of being a bro. The 2013 Winter Beer Festival is one event that a true Bro puts on his calendar in August — sandwiched between “drinking beer” and “drinking more beer.” Tickets for this Feb. 23 event at Fifth Third Ballpark go on sale Dec. 1. Last year’s tickets sold out in a matter of weeks, so act quickly.

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Winter Beer Festival Fifth Third Ballpark, Comstock Park Feb. 23 michiganbrewersguild.org

Pop Evil understands Bros: sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll. They rock hard and they know how to stick it to the man. This Grand Rapids-based band has lived the rock and roll lifestyle, having toured with Papa Roach and Judas Priest. The video for the single “Boss’s Daughter” on the band’s latest album, War of Angels, features guitarist Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe and Playboy Playmate Miss July 2011, Jessica Hinton.

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Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Pop Evil popevil.com

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Every now and then a Bro needs to take off the backwards baseball cap and experience a night on the town. For the most traditional, no-nonsense Bros, B.O.B.’s Brewery offers standard brews such as the Afterglow Amber and Nautical Dawn. But for Bros that are looking for a little more adventure, Brewmaster John Svaboda rotates a slew of specialty and seasonal beers.

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B.O.B.’s Brewery 20 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids thebob.com, (616) 356-2000

Bros love to show off hours logged at the gym, so Dec. 2 is the perfect time to put their strength to the test. First, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Climb Kalamazoo hosts Brew at the ‘Zoo, a bouldering competition open to the public. Registration is $25 in advance or $30 at the door, while spectators get in free. Follow up your Bro’s bouldering feats with a 3 p.m. showing of Reel Rock 7 at Kalamazoo State Theater. Watch the greatest climbers in the world as they take on the biggest challenges in the sport of rock-climbing.

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Climb Kalamazoo 136 S. Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo climbkalamazoo.com, (269) 385-9891 Kalamazoo State Theater 404 S. Burdick, Kalamazoo kazoostate.com, (269) 345-6500

When Bros go out to eat, they mean business. They want filling, flavorful food for not a lot of cash. The Gourmet Burger list at O’Toole’s Public House provides enough variety and heartiness to conquer any Bro’s hunger. We recommend the Hangover — a burger with bacon, egg, Swiss, cheddar, lettuce, tomato, pickles and House Bloody Mary Sauce.

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O’Toole’s Public House 448 Bridge Street, Grand Rapids otooles.gr.com, (616) 742-6095


Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

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Man of Leisure

The Man of Leisure has it all. Money, taste and a pretty woman. Through the force of his intellect and rectitude, he no longer works. Existing, being himself, is work enough. He carefully plots his days as an endless succession of pleasurable sensory experiences with like-minded golden-haired peers. b y S t e v e n d e P o l o

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Great Escape Inns of Saugatuck has a twonight Christmas Candlelight Progressive Dinner. Friday evening, join other guests for socializing, sampling seasonal treats and traditional caroling. Saturday evening, take a candlelit tour of the charming Bayside Inn, Jolly Olde English-style Twin Oaks Inn and quaint Ivy Inn. Travel from inn to inn savoring holiday cuisine, such as Chicken Wellington, with festive entertainment.

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cocktail for the Man of Leisure. The Dark and Stormy is the signature cocktail of the century-old Kent Country Club, which offers 130 acres of rolling vistas pockmarked by blue-haired duffers. When this reporter asked for the recipe, the grizzled bartender looked over his shoulder while pulling out a massive bronze key. He carefully turned the lock on an ancient wormwood box. The lid creaked, dust swirled, and he pulled out his iPhone, tapped an app, and there it was: Gosling’s Black Seal Rum and ginger beer over ice. Add a lime and you’re back in Bermuda.

Christmas Candlelight Progressive Dinner Great Escape Inns of Saugatuck Dec. 7 and 8 grandescapeinns.com, (800) 647-6023

Kent Country Club 1600 College Ave., Grand Rapids kentcountryclub.com, (616) 363-6811

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Dark and stormy is a crummy way to start a novel. But it’s a fantastic

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It’s always something. Whether having to pay taxes or not being able

to find the caviar in the yacht, it’s always something for the Man of Leisure. That’s also the title of an album by fan-favorite Mid-Life Crisis. The band’s name is a play on the members’ ages, all of whom are living out their musical dreams by playing soul-infused rock music. Mid-Life Crisis mlcband.com

When one can eat whatever he wants, when- ever he wants and wherever he feels like, it is refreshing to sample the mysterious morsels on the charcuterie menu at Reserve. A favorite is the Prosciutto Di Parma DOP. Lusciously fattened ham hocks have been massaged with fistfuls of salt by rosy-cheeked Italian virgins before taking a year-long nap amidst ancient chestnut trees. Pair a pile

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of paper-thin Prosciutto with soft goat cheese from Michigan and Italian Gorgonzola cheese for a memorable meal. Reserve Wine and Food 201 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids reservegr.com, (616) 855-9463

The Man of Leisure loves nothing better than nubile, young bodies flitting about over his head. He will absolutely adore “Cirque de Noel” by the Grand Rapids Symphony. This exciting holiday production features veterans from Le Cirque — aerial flyers, acrobats, contortionists, dancers, jugglers, balancers and strongmen — performing to classical and seasonal holiday favorites. It will have the passion of Mannheim Steamroller without the sag.

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Grand Rapids Symphony Presents Fifth Third Cirque de Noel DeVos Performance Hall, Grand Rapids Dec. 18-20, 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $32 devosperformancehall.com, (616) 742-6500


Pop Culture Nerd

The Pop Culture Nerd loves all things from the past and present, as long as it is ironic. Here’s a list of things to do with the mass media consumer in your life. B y N i c k M a n e s

DJ Jef L eppard basically screams pop culture. The dude drives a Ford Pinto all over town. He wears vintage sunglasses. He LOVES Eighties music. All this makes him the perfect DJ/ Host for the monthly Retro D’luxe dance party, held in the venue section of The Pyramid Scheme. A trip to Retro D’luxe includes your favorite Eighties hits, and maybe some shirtless hipsters dancing to Springsteen.

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Retro D’luxe The Pyramid Scheme, Grand Rapids Dec. 20, 9 p.m., $20 pyramidschemebar.com, (616) 272-3758

Aside from brewing beer and making delicious wood-fired pizzas, Harmony Brewing Company’s bartenders put together some handcrafted, pop-culture-infused cocktails. Among them is the “Dude Abides,” a White Russian made with Harmony’s house-made root beer, and is something Jeffrey Lebowski would drink a few of. Harmony also brews a Bronson Pinchot brown ale that’s occasionally on draft, and has featured a Liz Lemoned Sangria and Lil’ Sebastian IPA.

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Harmony Brewing Company 1551 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids harmonybeer.com, (616) 233-0063

It’s probably not a surprise that musicians are also into pop culture. The Extra Texture takes it to the next level, playing the occasional warehouse show infused with a laser installation and double projection screens. “We definitely like to have fun with music, and we like to experiment with different layers and tonal textures,” said Guitarist Justin Golinski. “Dynamics are surely a main focal point in the next steps we’re taking as a band.” While The Extra Texture is primarily taking the winter off to work on recording an album, Golinski says the band members are

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The Extra Texture Search Facebook: The Extra Texture

Short’s Brewery in Northern Michigan has certainly made a name for itself for its experimental beers. While the food does not get the same press, it certainly is no slouch. The fare may appear typical for a brewery — pizzas, sandwiches, salads, etc. — but it is expertly prepared and delicious. Also, nearly every dish is named after a song from experimental rock band, Ween. Examples include the Mutilated Lips Pizza, the Where’d the Cheese Go? Sandwich and the Roses Are Free appetizer.

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Shorts Brewing Company 121 N. Bridge St., Bellaire shortsbrewing.com, (231) 498-2300

It doesn’t get much more “pop culture” than watching a tribute band perform classic ‘70s hits made famous in this generation by a ‘90s film based on a b ook w ritten in the ‘8 0s . However, attendees at the Orbit Room will have just that opportunity when The Musical Box, “the exclusive, authorized by Peter Gabriel, recreation of Genesis,” performs the band’s classic record, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway. American Psycho monolog ues are optional.

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Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

certainly open to playing shows, particularly local ones.

The Musical Box The Orbit Room, Grand Rapids Dec. 14, doors at 6:30 p.m. $23.50-$38.50, 16+ orbitroom.com, (616) 942-1328

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Bookworm

Dragging Bookworms into the real world can be a challenge when there’s a good book, a cozy armchair and a hot mug of tea to be had. Here’s how to convince the Bookworm to ditch the comfy sweatpants and re-acclimate to society. B y M e a g h a n M i n k u s

Here’s something to boost a Bookworm’s creative juices. In conjunction with the Grand Rapids Art Museum’s Real/Surreal exhibit, which juxtaposes reality and imagination, the GRAM is showing a series of surrealist films. December 8th’s offering is The Fall, in which an injured stuntman and a girl with a broken arm in a 1920’s Los Angeles hospital tell each other stories of five mythical heroes that start to seem all too real as the film progresses.

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Real/Surreal Film Series: The Fall Grand Rapids Art Museum Dec. 8, 2 p.m. artmuseumgr.org, (616) 831-1000

Ta k e y o u r a n t i s o c i a l Bookworm out for a dark, brooding drink — preferably one that’s been aged in a cellar for a few years. In addition to its freshly brewed beer, New Holland Brewing Company boasts its Library Brews, which are different beer picks that are kept in the brewery’s cellar library to slowly reach barrel-aged goodness. While some beers are as young as last year, the oldest is a 2005 Dragon’s Milk — the perfect match for the musing, writerly type.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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New Holland Brewing Company 66 E 8th St, Holland newhollandbrew.com, (616) 355-6422

The Red Sea Pedestrians and the Corn Fed Girls will be spending New Year’s Eve playing Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and Abbey Road in their entirety. While the evening starts out with original songs from each local group, the show continues into a night of Beatles magic that will have the Bookworm singing along.

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The Red Sea Pedestrians & Corn Fed Girls Kalamazoo State Theatre Dec. 31, 9 p.m. $23 in advance, $25 day of show kazoostate.com, (269) 345-6500

Since your Bookworm probably doesn’t have the money to traipse through the worlds of literary legends like Shakespeare, Austen and Dickens, dinner at Chequers may be the next best thing. “It’s just a quaint, out-of-the-way place with lots of nooks and crannies for a bookworm to sit and read and not be obvious,” says Dining Room Manager Georgeann Corbett. Corbett recommends the shepherd’s pie or the fish & chips, along with a Bass Ale or Guinness stout to wash it down.

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Chequers 220 Culver St, Saugatuck (269) 857-1868

Next to Normal earned writer Brian Yorkey the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and a nomination for the 2009 Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical, both of which he shared with composer Tom Kitt. The musical follows a suburban family desperately trying to appear normal. Sixteenyear-old Natalie struggles to escape from her older brother’s shadow, housewife Diana battles bipolar disorder and stops taking her medication, and husband Dan attempts to keep his family from spinning out of control.

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Next to Normal, presented by Actors’ Theatre Spectrum Theatre, Grand Rapids Through Dec. 15, 8 p.m. actorstheatregrandrapids.org, (616) 234-3946


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Buzzkill

It’s hard enough to shop for people, but when it comes to gifting the proverbial “wet blanket,” he or she won’t like the items, can’t use them or already has it (and tells you that with great disdain). B y M i s s y B l a c k

If the world’s going to end, the Buzzkill probably already “told ya so.” UICA’s End of the World Party on Dec. 21 features a DJ, cocktails and appetizers, as well as the opening of Utopia/Dystopia. The exhibition features works portraying different views on the end of the world. Even auction items get playful, featuring “bucket list” experiences or “things you want to do before the end of the world,” says UICA’s Director of Development Kristine Palosaari.

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When “Killjoy” is out dining with the few friends he or she has, it’s always a struggle. When the table finally agrees on an appetizer that gets the majority vote — like the Garlic Dill Monkey Bread selection — it’s still not going to happen. The dejected personality picks the Crispy Brussels Sprouts. Talk about a letdown — but no! The sprouts are saturated in a ginger-blood orange glaze that is sweet, crunchy and surprisingly awesome. That’s the last vegetable you’d ever decide on for a starter but the Buzzkill makes it work this time.

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End of the World Party Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids Dec. 21, 8 p.m. Call UICA for admission info uica.org, (616) 454-7000

Bostwick Lake Inn 8521 Belding Rd. NE, Rockford thegilmorecollection.com, (616) 874-7290

When the Buzzkill wants to head out for drinks, he means just some coffee, alone, in a corner of the cozy Chapbook Café inside Schuler Books & Music — and he’s got a stack of self-help books to ward off any potential social interaction. With a mile-long list of beverages, the ultimate “downer” can hole up and drink the night away with an espresso, cappuccino, latte, chai, hot tea, smoothies or Italian or French sodas.

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Schuler Books & Music Various locations schulerbooks.com

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

With a band name like The Moody Coyotes, our “Debbie Downer” type is sure to be intrigued. The multiinstrumental acoustic band from Kalamazoo features guitar, bass, percussion, mandolin, banjo, harmonica — and just about anything else with strings and frets. The band is described as eclectic Americana: moody, eclectic and howling coyotes. Is anyone else picking up what I’m putting down?

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The Moody Coyotes on Facebook

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Homeboys from way back in the day, our personality has to go see what this Grinch in the Hood production is all about. This parody on How the Grinch Stole Christmas features the Grinch in the ‘hood, heading to different houses with different religions and taking away everyone’s holiday. “It’s the Christmas show for people who are cranky about Christmas and who don’t want to watch It’s a Wonderful Life again,” says Carol Zombro, executive director of Fancy Pants Theater. “We really embrace buzzkills. We offer something for everyone, and during the holidays so many people are depressed.”

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Grinch in the Hood Fancy Pants Theater, Kalamazoo Dec. 13-16, 20-22 fancypantstheater.webs.com


Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

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Eccentric

Eccentric personalities seek out colorful experiences and favor exotic things peppered with the familiar. Tastes range from the flair for the eccentric to finely curated obsessions. B y A u d r i a L a r s e n

The Holiday Balloon Fest in Battle Creek is a quirky event to take your best eccentric comrade during this season’s festivities. Enjoy more than 70 hot air balloons as they float through the crisp, wintry sky. Watch the competition and check out the educational booths to learn more about the science and passion behind balloonists.

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Holiday Balloon Fest Kellog Community College, Battle Creek Dec. 1-2 holidayballoonfest.com

The Black Owl Café is a snazzy new joint that replaced The Strutt in Kalamazoo. Take your favorite Eccentric out for a unique cup of joe, like the Maple Bacon Coffee from Kalamazoo Coffee Company. Open seven days a week, the café’s cozy atmosphere will warm the cockles of your heart. And you can grab a bite, too. Try a gourmet pizza or other light meal offerings while you sip and plot your next exciting adventure.

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Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

The Black Owl Café 414 Walbridge St., Kalamazoo (269) 459-1334

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Music is a must for the Eccentric in your life. Classically trained violinist Ritsu Katsumata flouts traditional genres with her own electric compositions, creating soundscapes that marry classical styles with post-modern and pop-rock vibes. She infuses her music with multi-media experiences that envelop the senses and seeks to find similarities in the blended styles. “It’s all selfexpression,” Katsumata said. “All the music points to some sort of emotional experience.”

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Ritsu Katsumata ritsu.com

Who needs forks? The Eccentric in your life probably doesn’t. Little Africa, aka Teshlou’s, specializes in Ethiopian cuisine that happens to be vegan. Omnivores will love the rich flavors and wide range of spices. Your meal is served atop injera, a spongy flatbread, on a large platter with hearty dollops of various delights like soy curry, lentils, tomato salad and much more. You simply tear sections of the bread to scoop up your meal. And the thick, spiced tea and mango smoothies are a must. Perfect for gatherings, a shared platter will leave you stuffed.

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Little Africa 956 Fulton St. E, Grand Rapids (616) 222-1169

Cult figures Edith Bouvier Beale and her daughter “Little” Edie Beale are the epitome of eccentric personalities. As the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, respectively, the Beales went from society figures to recluses, dwelling in a derelict manse. Documentaries have been filmed about the pair, and now you can experience their story on the stage in Grey Gardens: The Musical. Set in 1941 and 1973, the theatrical production explores the Beales in all their unique glory.

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Grey Gardens: The Musical Parish Theater, Kalamazoo Jan. 18-Feb. 3, show times at 2, 7:30 and 8 p.m. $12-$23 kazoocivic.com, (269) 343-1313


FILM BUFF

Picking out a movie for a film buff is like picking out a foreign policy for the president: most people are just not qualified to do it. Think outside the screen, and take your special film buff on the town. B y A n y a Z e n t m e y e r

The U ICA welcomes Jim Hubbard, producer of UNITED IN ANGER: A History of ACT UP. The feature-length documentar y chronicles the grassroots efforts of ACT UP (the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) and uses archival footage and interviews borrowed from the ACT UP Oral History Project to bring personal struggle to the screen. Included are major historical events like Seize Control of the FDA, Stop the Church, and Day of Desperation that brought the AIDS crisis into public focus.

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Grand Rapids electro-pop duo, Alexis, has been steadily gaining ground on the music scene with their unique blend of electronica and what members Matthew Forbush and Dan Hurst describe as “smoky lounge and jazz.” Recently, local filmmaker Ryan Lieske of Familiar Productions (perhaps best known for his direction on the zombie movie, Abed) worked with Alexis on a music video for the band’s upcoming single.

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Alexis musicofalexis.com

UNITED IN ANGER: A History of ACT UP UICA, Grand Rapids Dec. 5, 7 p.m. $5, free for members uica.org, (616) 454-7000

Wealthy Theatre 1130 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids grcmc.org/theatre, (616) 459-4788

Paisano’s Bar & Grill 16 North Main St., Three Rivers paisanosbarandgrill.com, (269) 278-8525

Celebration! Cinema plays host to a smattering of everyone’s favorite holiday cult classics this December. Opening the first week of December: The holiday classic, It’s a Wonderful Life, and Will Ferrell as lovable Buddy in Elf. Maureen O’Hara and John Payne come back to life beginning Dec. 8 in Miracle on 34th Street, and the same day, film buffs can crack up with Chevy Chase in Christmas Vacation. On Dec. 15, Celebration! Cinema welcomes White Christmas and every family’s holiday tradition, A Christmas Story. Have fun, but don’t shoot your eye out.

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Celebration! Cinema celebrationcinema.com

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Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Ever y Tuesday night at 8 p.m., the Meanwhile Bar and Wealthy Theatre team up and sit down for the Meanwhile Film Series. There’s popcorn for everyone, and CMC members have access to Wealthy’s bar, which includes Michigan beers, mixed drinks and wine. Catch cult films and other classics like, The Princess Bride (Dec. 4), The Big Lebowski (Dec. 11) and The Goonies (Dec. 18). Tickets are $6 for general admission and $5 for members.

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Just a stone’s throw away from the historic Riviera Theatre in Three Rivers, Mich., Paisano’s Bar & Grill is a great place to grab a bite to eat after you catch a movie. You might want to plan for a Thursday night, because not only does Paisano’s have live music, but Thursday nights also hook you up with 50 cents off all draft beers.

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Foodie

For Foodies, eating is an act that transcends traditional artistic appreciation. Give them an original experience that will take root in memories spread throughout every sense that cannot be replicated in any social media feed. B y M a t t S i mp s o n S i e g e l

When the New York Times says an inn may be the ‘grandest place to stay,’ you shouldn’t doubt it. The Belvedere Inn is a Europeanstyle boutique hotel that boasts a Friday and Saturday special with a $100 credit toward a four-course supper for two. Between a three-week aged Chateaubriand and the Veal Sweetbreads Au Gratin, this Foodie dream destination could be the ultimate present. The Bed, Breakfast and Dinner special runs year ‘round, so RSVP soon and keep abreast of the blackout dates.

Eat anything that The Starving Artist Tory O’Haire could possibly feed you this holiday season. Available for lessons and cooking at your parties and events, O’Haire also has his hands busy this season with an emergency cooking hotline via The Starving Artist Facebook page, which helps anyone in need of recipes, ingredient sources, menu planning and more. O’Haire also runs The Full Moon Supper Club, an elite underground dining club that meets once a month. December features a Viennese Christmas-themed dinner. Tickets may be purchased online.

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The Starving Artist and The Full Moon Supper Club West Michigan the-starving-artist.net, facebook.com/thestarvingartist, facebook.com/ fullmoonsupperclub

The Belvedere Inn 3656 63rd St., Saugatuck thebelvedereinn.com, (269) 857-5777

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Make a dinner party interesting with a “Who Done It?” murder mystery by Grand Rapids’ own The Murder Mystery Co. If you’d rather have the dead body cleanup detail fall to someone else, tickets for two are $60 with a full meal included at Brann’s Sizzling Steaks and Sports Grille. Join the Gold Circle for $15 more per ticket and be thrust into the front row of the performance. Often riotous and always humorous, surprise your Foodie by not telling them beforehand.

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When the workweek exacts its brain-numbing toll, usually by hump day, it’s time for a drink. Unfortunately, foodies cannot rely on cheap pitchers, as refined palates require more prestigious deliver y mechanisms. Take your foodie to The Tasting Room inside Webster’s Prime in Kalamazoo. Lounge in a cozy and sublime atmosphere, separate from the main dining room, with countless wines to sample. You could easily spend six months sampling only reds on this expansive list.

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The Tasting Room at Webster’s Prime 100 W. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo webstersrestaurant.com, (269) 343-4444

Kick it up with the bluegrass at One Trick Pony for a lazy meal with Fauxgrass. Snack on Tricky Chips (homemade chips baked with chicken, green onions,

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tomatoes, and smoked cheddar drowning in brown chicken gravy with a side of chipotle ketchup) or dig into Jerk Chicken Chili Pasta (with chili pepper fettuccine) as Fauxgrass’ banjo-banging beast of a tune, “Jericho,” tears you down. Fauxgrass One Trick Pony, Grand Rapids Dec. 8, 8 p.m. onetrick.biz, (616) 235-7669

The Murder Mystery Co. Brann’s Sizzling Steaks and Sports Grille 401 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids Dec. 1, 7, 14, 21, 28, 31; 7 p.m. $60 grimprov.com, (888) 643-2583


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Survivalist

With the Mayan calendar’s expiration date swiftly approaching, the end is nigh-er than it’s ever been. Fortunately, if you know a Survivalist, you’ll be set for whatever the end of the world entails: zombies, the Rapture or even a full-scale alien invasion. b y M e a g h a n M i n k u s

Go all Katniss Everdeen on unsuspecting prey by practicing your crossbow skills at Grand Valley Sporting Goods’ 20-lane archery range. For $6 (no time limit), bow-hunting enthusiasts can try out their new bows at the 20yard range or even join a league — if you’re into forming alliances, that is.

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Archery Range Grand Valley Sporting Goods 6387 Lake Michigan Dr., Allendale gvsportinggoods.com, (616) 895-6592

The Sand Bar is the perfect place to hide out, listen to some blues and rock n’ roll and wet your whistle with Miller Lite, Foster’s, Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and Leinenkugel Red on tap. With its small-town atmosphere, “It’d be a good place to listen to the blues until the end,” says Manager Pete Curtis. If the world survives Dec. 21, the Sand Bar hosts a New Year’s party featuring the Shirey Brother Band and no cover charge.

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Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

The Sand Bar Saloon 141 Butler Street, Saugatuck (269) 857-2676

When the power grids go down and Survivalists can’t listen to their favorite music, they’ll make their own. Grand River Music offers acoustic instruments such as guitars, banjos and mandolins, as well as one free lesson to start you off. “It’s mainly a guitar shop, so we mostly teach guitar, but we can also teach banjo, ukulele, mandolin, bass … you name it,” said Owner Terry Poe. While GRM’s 100 lessons per week are mainly taught in the store’s studios, teachers are also able to travel and teach you in your home — perfect for when

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you want musical refreshment but don’t want to leave your cozy bunker. Grand River Music 1533 Wealthy St, Grand Rapids grandrivermusic.com, (616) 356-6161

To stay on top in a post-apocalyptic world, Survivalists need to keep their trading smarts and reflexes sharp. After scarfing down a KBE Burger (a half-pound, signature four-beef blend) or some Smoked Apple Bacon Pork Chops in true kill-it-and-grill-it style, watch as 28 rotating draft beers constantly change price based on real-time sales just like the stock market. Be ready to predict and pounce on a market crash, when beer prices suddenly drop to all-time lows.

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Kalamazoo Beer Exchange 211 East Water St., Kalamazoo kalamazoobeerexchange.com, (269) 532-1188

The Survivalist will be stressed from planning for impending doom, so relax them a bit with some local laughs. River City Improv has conveniently scheduled some pre-apocalypse shows and provides comedic entertainment that keeps audiences on their toes. After watching skits, songs, improv games and random dance numbers, the Survivalist will come away with fond memories of the lighter side of the human race that will bolster them as they watch everything they’ve ever known crumble into ruins.

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River City Improv Ladies Literary Club, 61 Sheldon Blvd SE, Grand Rapids Performances Dec. 1 and 15 rivercityimprov.com, (616) 752-8570


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Artist

Behind the stoic countenance and blatant disregard for most societal conventions, the artist is just a field mouse scurrying across the Great Plains in search of something inspirational. B y A l e x a n d r a F l u e g e l

Catch a show or exhibition at multimedia alternative art venue Mexicains Sans Frontieres. Located in artist Hugo Claudin’s second-story live/ work space on South Division, the venue has been bringing in eclectic music from all over the world since 2006. “It’s the kind of stuff you would see in the page of The Wire UK,” said Claudin. The venue is also home to Claudin’s work and often serves as a place for other local artists to show their stuff.

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Mexicains Sans Frontieres 120 S. Division Ave. #226 hugo-claudin.blogspot.com

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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RockwellRepublic’s Espresso Martini has all the markers of a libation fit to ignite a spark of creativity. Created using Van Gogh double espresso vodka, vanilla Stoli, espresso liqueur, cream and espresso beans, this martini gives the artist that extra jolt of energy for a night in the studio. Be sure to take your friend on a Thursday when all martinis are half off. Just because they may be a starving artist doesn’t mean they have to drink like one.

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Rockwell-Republic 45 S. Division, Grand Rapids rockwellsrepublic.com, (616) 551-3563

Brick Road Pizza has a reputation for crafting an artful pizza, no matter what the palate’s preferred medium may be. Vegan and vegetarian options? Countless. Gluten-free? You know it. The eatery not only offers artists the chance to create a vision in seitan pepperoni, it also boasts a

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wealth of bohemian entrées made with fresh, local ingredients and a great selection of Michigan craft brews. Brick Road Pizza 1017 Wealthy Street, Grand Rapids brickroadpizza.com, (616) 719-2409

Dante Cope released his latest project, Atticus and Atilla, just in time for gift-giving season. Lush with multilayered drums, driving saxophone riffs and gripping vocals, the album is the “start of a new view on how hip-hop music is made,” Cope said. The inspiration for the project came from a variety of sources, including Stevie Wonder, To Kill a Mockingbird and indie-rock band Noisettes, and applies longform recording techniques from the ‘60s and ‘70s to modern hip-hop. “In short, less words and more meaning,” Cope said. Dante Cope Billy’s Lounge, Grand Rapids Dec. 27, 9 p.m., $5 billyslounge.com, (616) 459-5757

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Purveyors of art cinema have a place to get their fix every month, or twice if they’re feeling frisky. Cinema Sundays at the Muskegon Museum of Art screens famous films spanning the globe and dating back to the 1920s. The film club focuses on key works of cinema’s major directors and national cinema movements — from Hungary to Japan to Italy and Senegal. Local film scholar E.J. Hamacher is on hand to introduce each film and each screening is followed by an open discussion. Cinema Sundays Muskegon Museum of Art Free with museum admission, members free muskegonmuseumofart.org, (231) 720-2585

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Bar Star

Whether he’s looking for regrettable, drunken coitus or simply to clang glasses of beer together with his friends while watching his favorite sports team lose, the bar star is attracted to all things social and booze-related. To him, it’s all a matter of simple math:  Alcohol + People = Awesome. B y D w a y n e H o o v e r

On those rare occasions when you find yourself at home instead of out at your favorite watering hole, why not bring the bar to you? Saugatuck Brewing Company lets your Bar Star use the professional equipment on premise to create his own brew. Get expert advice on how to make your perfect brew and use that info as your next icebreaker. $250 gets you four hours of brewing and 11 gallons of beer (or 60 22-ounce bottles). For scheduling, call SBC at (269) 857-7222. Saugatuck Brewing Company 2948 Blue Star Highway, Douglas sbrewing.com, (269) 857-7222

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If you’re eager for a night life spot that offers a bit more sophistication and class, look no further than The Gatsby in Kalamazoo. Throw on your preppiest outfit, get out and hit the dance floor, or just kick back and take advantage of the VIP seating and bottle service offered. The Gatsby boasts not only a posh location and atmosphere, but an extensive drink menu as well. The Gatsby Nightclub 310 2nd St., Kalamazoo thegatsby.co, (269) 290-1900

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The five-piece punk-rock outfit The Hex Bombs proudly proclaims, “We Are Rock and Roll.” Sporting a sound that’s very much rooted in anthem punk, these guys have become a staple in the Kalamazoo music scene since 2006, bringing both a stable fan base and rolling party along for the ride. So grab some friends, raise your glass and get ready to sing along to the chorus. The Hex Bombs thehexbombs.com

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Party like it’s, well, the ‘80s. The Intersection hosts the nostalgic stylings of the Mega ‘80s twice in December, once on the 14th and again on the 29th, much to the delight of hair spray and shoulder pad enthusiasts alike. Strap on those stirrup pants, throw on your Members Only jacket and take in a show that fully embraces a decade that most of us won’t admit that we miss. Mega ‘80s The Intersection, Grand Rapids Dec. 14 and 29, 8 p.m., $10, 21+ sectionlive.com, (616) 451-8232

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Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Don’t blow your hard-earned cash on five-dollar pizzas consisting of processed cheese and cardboard crust. Instead, head on down to Papa Pete’s for some of the homemade pie that is frequently cited as one of the best in Kalamazoo. Not in the mood for pizza? Order from Papa Pete’s sister restaurant, the Blue Dolphin, which boasts a selection of both American and Greek. Enjoy some grub before taking in live music or wooing the opposite sex on Latin Salsa Night. Papa Pete’s 502 S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo papapete.net, (269) 388-2196

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Hoarder

Gifts big or small are happily accepted by the Hoarder because the only thing better than a shaving kit is three shaving kits!!! B y M i s s y B l a c k

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Holiday shopping for friends and loved ones (and of course yourself) is easy when you head to the Uptown Holiday Shop Hop. Shop local, shop a lot and shop until you drop — major coin. “People get out and are able to try different foods and see new stores,” said Amy Ruis from Art of the Table. If walking gets to be too much and bags are too full (they will be), shoppers and Hoarders can hop onto one of the six Dash buses for warmth and convenient transportation.

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Uptown Holiday Shop Hop Uptown Grand Rapids Neighborhood Dec. 6, 4-9 p.m. uptowngr.com

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The Hoarder heard the word rehab and signed up, but this has nothing to do with their stuff issues. Instead, the Rehab Brunch at Stella’s Lounge offers greasy, awesome food from noon to 1 a.m. and a $5 Build-Your-Own Bloody Mary Bar from noon to 5 p.m. every Sunday. Fixins include Ugly Dog Bacon Vodka, citrus and habanero-infused tequila and tons of additions such as, “hot sauces, pickled beets, sausages, blue cheese stuffed olives, celery and tons more,” according to Assistant General Manager Lindsay Fussman.

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Stella’s Lounge 53 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids stellasgr.com, (616) 742-4444

It’s no surprise that the Hoarder wants to get a lot of food for his money, so off to Vitale’s it is. Stop into the Leonard Street location — considered a Grand Rapids institution — and try some Spitini. It’s Mr. Vitale’s family recipe of stuffed sirloin steak served with spaghetti. The Hoarder can eat a ton of food or stay home and take part in the restaurant’s many take-out specials.

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Vitale’s 834 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids theoriginalvitales.com, (616) 458-8368

The Mushmen play ‘90s ska with new wave elements. With so much high school nostalgia, the Hoarder wants to scoop it all up and save it just like scraps pasted into a yearbook. “We’re playing the kinds of music everybody sold their collection of,” said frontman Scott Rouse. “We are out of date and out of style. We are probably something that should have been thrown away from other people’s perspectives.” Get a piece of The Mushmen Dec. 14 at 7 p.m. at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum. Also new from these guys is a 7-inch split

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with The Sailor Kicks from Grand Rapids. I smell a collector’s item here… kerosenemachinerecords.com/artist/ themushmen

Packrats and hoarders know how to make the most of their (lack of) space. Cramming it all in is their specialty. Crawlspace Eviction packs in the laughs and is pegged as Kalamazoo’s hope for comedy. The improv and sketch comedy group hosts two shows Jan. 11 and 12 at 8 p.m. at Farmers Alley Theatre. Come out by the hoards to get a mix of sketch and improv comedy. “They can take a break from their psychosis to participate in ours,” says Director Dann Sytsma. “They can see people crazier than them.”

watch

Crawlspace Eviction Farmers Alley Theatre 221 Farmers Alley, Kalamazoo crawlspacetheatre.com, (269) 343-2727


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Guide

Hippie

It may be 2012, but hippie culture still hangs around like the thick scent of freshly burnt Nag Champa. Hippies dedicate themselves to sharing with others, be it tie-dye techniques, half-read copies of the Tao Te Ching or spare rice cakes, but you know that in their hearts they like to receive as much as the rest of us. B y K y l e A u s t i n

It’s hard to impress the rest of the hacky sack circle unless one is properly limbered up, and there’s no better way to do so than attending one of the Funky Buddha Yoga Hothouse’s Sunday evening power Vinyasa community classes. “Vinyasa is vigorous, high-energy yoga,” said Owner Kerri Reinbold. “It’s what our studio is based on.” For only $5 per session, your pal can sweat out the toxins in Funky Buddha’s 95-degree hothouse studio.

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Funky Buddha Yoga Hothouse 1331 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids yogahothouse. com, (616) 459-9642

Hippies are always looking out for their mother — Mother Earth, that is. When it’s time to unwind after a long, hard day of not working for “the man,” they yearn for a beer that leaves behind the smallest carbon footprint possible. Enter: Brewery Vivant, the nation’s first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified microbrewery. Every time a tab is popped on one of Vivant’s eco-friendly aluminum cans, a hippie gets his dreadlocks.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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30 | REVUEWM.COM | December 2012

Brewery Vivant 925 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids breweryvivant.com, (616) 719-1604

In the ’60s, communes seemed to hold the secret to responsible, healthy living. Then the Manson Family came along and ruined it for

eat

everyone. Thankfully, Bartertown Diner can still give the hippie on your list a taste of communal eating with a full menu of vegetarian, vegan and raw food dishes. “A lot of people assume that [vegan food] is bland, but here we have experienced chefs and fresh, local ingredients,” said Bartertown employee Onya Jackson. “It makes a huge difference.” Bartertown Diner 6 Jefferson St., Grand Rapids bartertowngr.com, (616) 233-3219

No local musicians embody the true ideals of hippiedom more than Seth Bernard and May Erlewine, Michigan’s first couple of folk. The de facto face of Earthworks Music, Seth and May play a mix of folk, blues, rock and Americana that celebrates community. Treating the hippie in your life to a night of music that entertains and inspires won’t be difficult, as the pair regularly plays shows in West Michigan.

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Seth Bernard and May Erlewine sethandmay.com

Pop culture’s Age of Aquarius may technically be over, but don’t tell your hippie friend. Instead, take them to see Hair, which comes to Miller Auditorium Feb. 26. The classic counterculture musical is filled with enough nudity, political protest, drugs and rock n roll to make any 21st century hippie believe that they’re right in the middle of the time period they’re always telling you they should have been born in.

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Miller Auditorium 2200 Auditorium Drive, Kalamazoo Feb. 26-27, 7:30 p.m. Tickets range $25-$55 millerauditorium.com, (269) 387-2300


M EL IS S A FE R R IC K DECEMBER 8

8:00PM - TICKETS $30

DECEM BERSO NGS

DECEMBER 9 6:00PM - TICKETS $30

NOW-CHRISTMAS (BEST SELECTION BEFORE 1PM)

AUGUST H O N O R DEBCEYMBER 15 8:00PM - TICKETS $20

JANUARY-APRIL SATURDAY 10AM - 1PM

SEVEN STEPS UP: 116 S Jackson Street, Spring Lake, MI 49456 (616) 678-3618 - www.pindropconcerts.com

www.fultonstreetmarket.org

REVUEWM.COM | December 2012 |

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

FRIDAY & SATURDAY 8AM - 3PM

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Thespian

The Thespian is an artsy dreamer who longs to be swept up into imaginary worlds of impressive sights, sounds and stories. Thespians are also quite fond of drama — especially when they are the center of it. B y A l l i s o n P a r k e r

Grand Rapids Civic Theatre welcomes actors, singers and dancers of all experience levels to bring nine main stage show s to West Michiganders per season. More than 800 volunteers each year lend their skills as carpenters, technicians, costume sewers, stagehands and more. “We are a community theater, so pretty much anything here is a volunteer opportunity,” said Mary Jo DeNolf, director of volunteers and operations. “You not only help out at the theatre, but also support the arts.” Here’s the perfect chance to scratch a theater itch while becoming what DeNolf calls “part of the Civic Theatre family.”

Do

Grand Rapids Civic Theatre 30 N. Division Ave., Grand Rapids grct.org, (616) 222-6650

Shakespeare’s Pub offers live music and specialty drinks. The building’s previous occupant, Shakespeare’s Rod and Reel, inspired the fish hook and ink pot logo that playfully commemorates both the previous business and good old Will Shakespeare himself . Bardolators represent!

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

32 | REVUEWM.COM | December 2012

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Shakespeare’s Pub 241 East Kalamazoo Avenue, Kalamazoo, shakespearespub.com, (269) 488-7782

Big, audacious and unapologetic toward its haters, the opera offers everything thespians love, from intriguing plots to striking scenery. Luckily, Opera Grand Rapids still has two more performances left this season: Mozart’s darkly sensual Don Giovanni and Giuseppe Verdi’s tragic classic La Traviata. Pre-

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performance talks and English subtitles erase language barriers, allowing audiences to easily soak in sweeping sights and soaring sounds. Don Giovanni DeVos Performance Hall, Grand Rapids Feb. 8-9, 7:30 p.m., Tickets start at $21 La Traviata DeVos Performance Hall, Grand Rapids May 3-4, 7:30 p.m., Tickets start at $21 operagr.com, (616) 451-2741

When standard fare just doesn’t have enough pizzazz to resonate with your creative vibe, head to Theatre Bar for great drinks and tasty seafood. Enjoy the sushi and oyster bar, and feel your artistic energy revive when you order a helping of lizard tongues, or as less imaginative folks call them, potato skins. For a similarly snazzy drink option, try the chocolaty Starry Night or the fruity Times Square.

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Theatre Bar 23 Washington Ave., Grand Haven harborrestaurants.com, (616) 844-5055

For us drama llamas, the bolder the better, and nothing says “in your face” quite like life-size horse puppets charging thunderously across the stage. Whether taking first steps on wobbly foal legs or rearing with a shrill whinny and proud toss of the head, these equines are breathtaking examples of exquisite artistry. Based on the novel that inspired last year’s Academy-Award nominated film, War Horse recounts a boy’s extraordinary journey to recover his four-legged friend who was sold to the cavalry in World War I.

watch

War Horse Wharton Center, East Lansing Dec. 5-9, show times at 1, 1:30, 2, 6:30, 7:30 and 8 p.m. $32-$72, whartoncenter.com, (517) 353-1982


Sporty

Chugging sports drinks, knowing every player’s stats and life story and making you feel guilty about your own sedentary lifestyle are just a few of the Sporty’s natural talents. Here are some hints to help you keep up with them this holiday season. B y C a m i S o r e n s e n

The sporty is in better shape than you, and their daily Facebook workout updates prove it. If a combination of holiday spirit and a last-ditch attempt at actually keeping a New Year’s resolution compels you to finally accept offers to run a race with your sporty pal, suggest the Hot Chocolate 5k in Kalamazoo. The race is untimed and intended to be non-competitive, but there’s no guaranteeing Sporty won’t excessively celebrate the fact that they finished before you hit the two-mile marker. The good news is that while they bask in their runner’s high, you can revel in the free hot chocolate waiting for you at the finish line.

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Hot Chocolate 5k Linden Grove Middle School 4241 Arboretum Parkway, Kalamazoo Dec. 15, 9:30 a.m. $25 pre-race, $30 day of girlsontherunkazoo.org/events

Mitten Brewing Company 527 Leonard Street NW, Grand Rapids mittenbrewing.com, (616) 608-5612

A broad variety of music appeals to the sporty, and that’s just what they’ll get from Great Scott!, a Grand Rapids-based cover band. A set list that includes well-known sports anthems such as “Baby Got Back,” “Sweet Caroline” and

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Great Scott! greatscottlive.com

The sports enthusiast may have superstitious anxieties when it comes to moving from their “lucky spot” on the couch when their favorite team is playing. To calm those nerves, convince them to put down their Gatorade, head to Spectators Sports Grill & Bar and pick up beer and eats, featuring classic pub fare, as well as entrées such as prime rib and Lake Perch. The 26 TVs inside will have them wondering why they didn’t think of it sooner. Keep your head on a swivel, Sporty.

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Spectators Sports Grill & Bar 6432 Blue Star Highway, Saugatuck spectatorsrestaurant.com, (269) 857-5001

Bring the sportsperson in your life to a Muskegon Lumberjacks game for a night of shoulder-checking, jersey-ripping, hotdog-and-beer-devouring bliss. The sporty loves to be the hipster of the athletic world, allowing them to be able to say that they witnessed an athlete play before they were famous. With 192 alumni in the NHL, the United States Hockey League (USHL) provides the Lumberjacks with the opportunity to be the next big thing, and your sports-obsessed friend wants to be there to witness it.

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Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Beer, pizza and baseball — a Sporty’s dream team — is found at The Mitten Brewing Company. Owners and childhood friends Max Trierweiler and Chris Andrus introduce baseballthemed brews such as Peanuts and Crackerjack and Eighty-Four to pair with homemade, gourmet pizzas. Throughout baseball season, all five TVs will be tuned in to Tigers games, and during the offseason, catch a football or basketball game while you wait for April to roll around again.

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“Living la Vida Loca” is sure to keep the sporty singing and dancing.

Muskegon Lumberjacks LC Walker Arena 470 W. Western Ave., Muskegon insidemuskegonlumberjacks.com (231) 726-3879

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VINTAGE

These personalities take “old school” to the extreme. They’ve seen every John Hughes movie, have a closet filled with thrift-store finds and own more records and eight-tracks than digital downloads. B y S t e p h a n i e K a n g

Vintagers don’t have to give up those dolphin shorts and tube socks of roller disco yesteryear. At Kentwood Fun Spot, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back into the 1970s with its fully stocked arcade and roller rink. Kentwood Fun Spot offers family centered or adult-only skating schedules, as well as roller skating lessons or private parties, so be prepared to get your groove (or skate) on at this hot spot.

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Kentwood Fun Spot 14 52nd St., Kentwood kentwoodfunspot.com, (616) 534-8106

All true Vintagers dig old architecture. That’s why they choose Jamesport Brewing Company as the drinking destination of choice. The late Victorian storefront was built in 1890 and housed a wide variety of trades throughout the years, including a saloon, butcher shop and antique store, just to name a few. So while you kick back, relax and sip on microbrews with your vintage-loving friend, make sure to take some time to embrace your inner historian at this center of Ludington history.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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drink

Jamesport Brewing Company 410 S. James St., Ludington jamesportbrewingcompany. com, (231) 845-2522

If you like to reminisce on the days of shoulder pads and Devo hats, then Starfarm is, like, totally what you need to satisfy your ‘80s fix. With this ‘80s-only cover band performing all of the best throwbacks, the Vintager will walk like an Egyptian and safety dance the night away. Starfarm performs at

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several venues all across West Michigan this month, including Billy’s Lounge in Grand Rapids on Dec. 28. Starfarm starfarmband.com

At Real Food Café, you’ll feel like you’ve gone back to a time of sock hops and soda shops. Resembling a classic 1950s diner, Real Food is full of charm and delicious food and is the go-to restaurant for Vintagers in the mood for some hearty, all-American breakfast or lunch. Real Food Café is cash-only, so make sure to come prepared with a pocket of cash and an empty stomach.

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Real Food Café 2419 Eastern Ave. SE, Grand Rapids (616) 241-4080 5430 Northland Drive NE, Grand Rapids (616) 361-1808

Long before auto-tuning and Heidi Montag’s singing career (can you believe that actually happened?), there was a voice above all the rest—The Voice. We’re talking about the good ol’ crooner himself, Frank Sinatra. My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra pays homage to the man that brought us the Rat Pack and hits like “New York, New York” and “Come Fly with Me.” Running Dec. 1 through Dec. 23, this show satisfies the Vintager in need of some jazzy, sentimental tunes. Tickets are $35.

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My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra Farmers Alley Theatre, Kalamazoo Dec. 1-23, show times at 2, 7:30 and 8 p.m. $33-$35 farmersalleytheatre.com, (269) 343-2727

Revue Holiday Gift Guide 2012  

Check out our most popular issue of the year -- the fifth annual guide to giving the gift of local entertainment to plethora of personalitie...

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