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Last-minute discoveries abound during final days

Call toll-free: 800-228-0429 Cara Recine, Lifestyles and special projects editor / ext. 5075


Adam Testa, Lifestyles writer / ext. 5031

Lacie Goff

Brenda Kirkpatrick, lists, live music / ext. 5089 Rhonda Ethridge, cover designer / ext. 5118 The Southern Illinoisan (USPS 258-908) is published daily at a yearly subscription rate of $178. It is published at 710 N. Illinois Ave., Carbondale, IL 62901. It is owned by Lee Enterprises of Davenport, Iowa.


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f you ask anyone who knows me, they will tell you I am an incredibly studious person. I must say, however, studying is the last thing I feel like doing during my last week in Rome. Non voglio essere studioso per niente! Nonetheless, this week contains my last two finals of the entire semester, and the day after my last final is our last day in Rome. I have run into a conundrum, though, because I am still hearing about and discovering new things I want to do before I leave. Yet, at this point, it is clear I am running out of time, and I am coming to the conclusion that I am not going to be able to do it all. One of the things I have just recently discovered is a thing called aperitivo. This is a very common thing here in Italy, and it is found at most bars and many restaurants.




A view of the Christmas tree at the Colosseum in Italy.

The concept is that you buy a drink of your choice, anything from wine to a margarita, and then for just the price of that drink, you can visit the appetizer “buffet” and choose from all types of food. Some places limit you to one plate per drink, but others, like the one we went to, offer unlimited food with just the one drink. The food selection at the bar we went to was phenomenal. They had pasta, potatoes with a spicy sauce,

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Page 2 Thursday, December 15, 2011 FLIPSIDE

Here in Italy, children start learning little bits of English at their schools from a very young age. Two very common words in the Italian language are ‘e’ and ‘è,’ yet they have very different meanings, depending if there is the accent mark or not. ‘E’ means ‘and,’ where as ‘è’ means ‘it is, or he/she is.’ A tiny change but a big difference.


couscous, curry rice and cups of mousse with a cookie on the bottom, just to name a few. We learned, too, that on Sundays, this particular place serves “international aperitivo,” with cuisines from around the world. Such a good deal, if you ask me. We are sad we didn’t discover this phenomenon sooner, but we have vowed to go at least one more time before we leave. Another rewarding experience I encountered this week came while

talking with the woman who is in charge of our apartment upkeep. She comes once a week and she doesn’t speak more than a few words of English, so we always converse in Italian. That in itself is always a wonderful means of practice for me in the language, but this week was fun in a new way, as she brought along her young daughter, who is learning English in school and with a tutor.

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for the community

Sesser native brings new life to opera house ‘A 1940s Radio Christmas Carol’ 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Dec. 16 and 17, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18. Sesser Opera House, 108 W. Franklin St. Tickets for evening performances are $5 or two canned goods. Admission Sunday will be canned goods only. BY ADAM TESTA THE SOUTHERN

hen Sesser native Rosie Cosens returned to the region after being gone for 30 years, one thing seemed missing from her town. The stage at the historic Sesser Opera House wasn’t being used to its full potential, and a significant amount of time had lapsed since a theater troupe called the venue home. Seeking a creative outlet, Cosens approached Mayor Ned Mitchell about organizing a production. “He asked if I could have something on stage by the end of the week,” she said. While that timetable simply wasn’t feasible, the duo began exploring options for bringing theater back to the Opera House. The result is a special Christmas gift of sorts for the people of Franklin County and Southern Illinois. Cosens directs and produces Walton Jones’ “A 1940s Radio Christmas


Carol” the weekend of Dec. 16-18 at the Sesser Opera House. Tickets for the evening performances are $5 or two canned goods, which will be donated to a local food pantry. Admission Sunday will be canned goods only. The desire for this effort was to give back to the community, Cosens said, by charging as little as possible. The food drive allows people to see the show who may be strapped for cash during the holidays but have a few extra items in the pantry. The play, set on Christmas Eve in 1943, tells the story of the Feddington Players, a radio group broadcasting from a hole-in-the-wall studio in Newark, N.J., who are presenting their contemporary take on Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” A number of issues arise, including noisy plumbing, missed cues, electrical blackouts and an incident of over-the-top proportions, including famed actor, yet radio novice, William St. Claire. As St. Claire suffers an on-air breakdown and begins to relate his life to Dickens’ classic tale, the cast must go improv to save the show, recreating the story as a film noir mystery featuring a hardboiled detective, a femme fatale and an absurd rescue sequence. “It’s a different take on

the traditional ‘Christmas Carol’ show people do,” said Jim Ford of Benton, who plays St. Claire in the show. “It’s a bit of an abbreviated version, but it still maintains that spirit of the original.” For this show, Cosens has brought together acting vets like Ford and novices alike. Cast members are Rich Luh, a Du Quoin pastor; appellate defenders Ed and Rita Anderson; former Marconi radio award nominee Sean Tolley; social worker Kate Riddle and music director William Reynolds, among others.


Jim Ford and Rita Anderson rehearse with the cast of ‘A 1940s Radio Christmas Carol’ on Friday in Sesser. The production runs from Dec. 16 to 18 at the Sesser Opera House.

“I felt very fortunate to get some people who really got the spirit of it,” Cosens said of her cast grasping the community focus. With the production running smoothly, Cosens is looking to the future.

Plans are already in place for an “anti-Valentine” production of readings titled “Tainted Love,” and in April, the Sesser Opera House Players will stage “The Music Man,” produced by Tiffany Kesler.

“I would like to have something on the stage every month, so that the theater can really come to life again,” she said. 618-351-5031

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FLIPSIDE Thursday, December 15, 2011 Page 3








Local wrestlers host year’s final show MARION — All American Pro Wrestling returns to the Black Diamond Harley-Davidson Warehouse on Sunday, Dec. 18, for its final television taping of 2011. The company’s show, “Collision,” airs at noon Saturdays on WSIL-TV 3. The episodes taped this weekend will air in January, leading up to “AAPW Main Event” on Jan. 14. That show will feature three internationally renowned wrestling stars: Colt Cabana, El Generico and Dragon Gate star PAC. Doors for Sunday’s taping open at 1 p.m. with a bell time of 2 p.m. Admission is a discounted $5 for adults and $3 for children. Veterans and active-duty service personnel are admitted free. Patrons can also receive $2 off admission price by bringing a

canned good or non-perishable food item, which will be donated to the Marion Ministerial Alliance. Curly and Heath Hatton are scheduled to defend their AAPW Tag Team Championships against unnamed opponents. Also scheduled to appear are AAPW Heavyweight Champion Edmund “Livewire” McGuire, Jay Spade, Mike Masters, “3G” Eric Wayne, Matt Cage, Christian Rose and more. “Seeing the local stars of AAPW on network television this year has been an amazing feeling,” said executive producer Chris Hagstrom. “These guys work hard to entertain the fans, and this final taping will certainly be exciting. This is the final build to Main Event, and it’s a show fans won’t want to miss.”

Come Experience Great Home Cooking

— Adam Testa


Holiday Events


All American Pro Wrestling will host its last show of the year Sunday at Black Diamond Harley-Davidson Warehouse.

Holiday Lights Fair: Through Dec. 30, Du Quoin State Fairgrounds; $8; 618-542-8338. Fantasy of Lights: Dusk-11 p.m. through Dec. 31, Foundation Park, 1616 E. McCord, Centralia; free; 618-532-3214 Candy Cane Lane: 5-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 5-11 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays; through Dec. 31, West Frankfort. Coulterville Holiday Light Display: Through Jan. 1, Coulterville City Park; www.coultervilleholiday Way of Lights: 5 p.m. nightly through Jan. 1, Our Lady of the Snows, Belleville; camel and pony rides, petting zoo, rides on horse-drawn carriages, laser show; 314-241-3400, ext. 6293.

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Monday: Ham & Beans; Chopped Sirloin Tuesday: Lasagna; Sausage w/Peppers & Onions Wednesday: Pollack Fish; Chicken n Dumplins Thursday: Meatloaf; Polish Sausage & Kraut Friday: Catfish; Liver and Onions Saturday: Chopped Sirloin; Spaghetti Sunday: Baked Ham; Chicken & Dumplins

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Marion Holiday Train: 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Dec. 17 and 18, 514 N. Market St., Marion; $15/ $12.50; www.marionsanta Holiday Dinners: Swedish Christmas dinners, 7 p.m. Dec. 15 and 22, Hedman Vineyards, 560 Chestnut Street, Alto Pass; reservations required; 618-893-4923. Christmas in the Park: Friday-Saturday, Dec. 16-17, Veterans Park, Mount Vernon; 618-242-6890. New Year’s Celebration: 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 31, Fort de Chartres State Historic Site, four miles west of Prairie du Rocher on State Route 155. A New Year’s tradition since 1722, the traditional French New Year’s celebration with carols and refreshments. The La Guiannee Singers will perform at the fort as part of their roving tour of the Prairie du Rocher area. Free.

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The Farewell Drifters will play at Hangar 9 tonight.

The Farewell Drifters playing at Hangar 9 CARBONDALE — This year has been a breakout one for Nashville-based band The Farewell Drifters. The group debuted in the Top 10 on the Billboard bluegrass charts, premiered a video on Paste, completed a nationwide tour and played at festivals and concerts including Folk Alliance, the International Bluegrass Music Association’s World of Bluegrass and the Americana Music Association festival. The band’s third album, “Echo Boom,”is a nod to the members’ generation, children born in the ’80s and ’90s. Throughout the album, the band confronts the pressures placed upon that generation by the previous one and the ramifications of some of the advice passed down from the Baby Boomers. The Farewell Drifters will be playing at 9 p.m. tonight, Dec. 15, at Hangar 9. — Adam Testa

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GOFF: Finds last-minute discoveries in Italy

Holiday Shows Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol: 7:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Dec. 16-17 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, The Varsity Center for the Arts, 418 S. Illinois Ave., Carbondale; dark comedy is true to the original but has a twist; The Jackson County Stage Company’s holiday show; $15/$10; A Radio Christmas Carol: 7 p.m. FridaySaturday, Dec. 16-17 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, Sesser Opera House, 108 W. Franklin St., Sesser; $5 or two cans of food for the Sesser Area food pantry;; 618-625-6300. White Christmas: 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, Historic Liberty Theater in downtown Murphysboro. Showing of classic holiday film “White Christmas” with Bing Crosby. Admission is requested donation. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. For more information call 618-684-5880.


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She asked me about what the Fourth of July While the mom was stood for and when working, she, her exactly Thanksgiving is daughter and I were all in celebrated. It was so the same room and we got much fun to bridge the to talking about how her gap between languages daughter was learning and cultures and to have English. That spurred such a wonderful a multi-lingual conversation with such conversation in which the great differences, yet daughter would say what make connections. she knew in English and For me, that, too, is one tell of stories and fairy of the main things being tales she liked that I abroad is about and one of recognized for their the things for which I am English equivalents. most thankful. The mom would join in, For one, getting to truly mostly in Italian, asking live in the culture here, questions about how to beyond the tourist say things in English, attractions and postcardhelping me to understand esque experiences, and what her daughter was also getting to blend these saying, and asking things two wonderful cultures such as when and how and relate to someone holidays are celebrated. with a different

background than myself. I feel it is an invaluable experience to have as global citizens in our world, and I am so very thankful for the small things like that, which make all the difference. Last week, here I come! Ci vediamo la prossima giovedi per il mio ultimo articolo! LACIE GOFF is the daughter

of Janice Gualdoni and the granddaughter of Louie and Beauella Gualdoni, all of Herrin. Lacie is a junior at California Lutheran University in Los Angeles, majoring in communication and journalism. She is spending this semester in Rome, studying Italian, history and art history.

The Stage Company in association with WSIU-FM and The Southern Illinoisan, presents:

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FLIPSIDE Thursday, December 15, 2011 Page 5










Living legend to perform at Carson Center COUNTRY SCENE Vince Hoffard

Merle Haggard 7:30 p.m. Jan. 19 at the Carson Center in Paducah. Tickets are $25, $35, $50, $80 and $120. Tickets can be purchased by calling 270-450-4444, online at or at the Carson Center box office from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.


rnest Hemingway is always near the top of the list when

discussing the greatest writers of all time, and Michael Jordan is never left out when talk turns to basketball legends. There are special individuals in every imaginable category that have made such huge contributions to their field that it would be inconceivable to not mention them. Merle Haggard is country music’s bedrock. His enormous catalog of songs about the bluecollar lifestyle and his instantly identifiable vocals are forever part of the genre’s fabric, woven with the same thread provided by icons like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and George Jones.

Haggard has written volumes about the relentless struggles of the hard-working middle class, earning him the title of “poet of the common man.” As a singer, he has reached the top of the Billboard charts 40 times. His long list of powerhouse songs includes “Okie from Muskogee,” “Mama Tried,” “The Fightin’ Side of Me,” “If We Make It Through December,” “Kentucky Gambler” and “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here and Drink.” At 74, Haggard has just released one of the most critically acclaimed albums of his storied career. “Working in Tennessee” is a gourmet blend of new creations by

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the songwriting genius, mixed with a couple of Johnny Cash classics (“Cocaine Blues” and “Jackson”) and a new version of “Working Man Blues,” performed with his son, Ben Haggard, and outlaw cohort Willie Nelson. Haggard will be in concert Jan. 19 in Paducah. Tickets would make a great Christmas gift for the hardcore country music fan. Haggard battled through a life-threatening illness in 2008. He was diagnosed with lung cancer, had part of one lung removed and now has fully recovered. He credits getting back on the road with saving his life. He loves to tour. “I’m swinging back in full throttle right now,” he said in a previous interview. “Music keeps me alive. It makes me breathe better. It’s funny, but I feel better when I


Merle Haggard, called ‘the poet of the common man’ will be performing Jan. 19 at the Carson Center in Paducah.

come off a tour than when I start out.” Haggard’s family was living in a boxcar when he was born. He witnessed the Oklahoma dust storms as a youngster, before the family fled to California, where life was tougher. His father died when he was 9 years old and Haggard became unruly, forcing his mother to put him into a juvenile home, an early version of the “scared straight” school of thought. It didn’t work. At the low point of his teenage years, and in a





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Page 6 Thursday, December 15, 2011 FLIPSIDE


drunken stupor, Haggard attempted to rob a tavern that he thought was closed. When he kicked in the back door, he was easily captured by the owner and sent to jail, where a robbery conviction earned him a cell at San Quentin, where he watched Cash perform. Upon release from prison, Haggard gave up on life. At 23, he became a fixture on the Bakersfield music scene. He would eventually land a job in Las Vegas playing bass guitar in the band of Wynn Stewart. One night, he heard Stewart sing a song he had just written. He told his boss if he could have the song, it would make him a star. Unknowingly, Stewart launched the career of one of the greatest singers in country music history when he handed over “Sing a Sad Song” to Haggard. The song peaked at No. 19, but gained him important recognition in the radio world. It took a while for Haggard to learn how to transfer his experiences to paper, but when he finally mastered the craft, the floodgates opened with “Swinging Doors,” “The Bottle Let Me Down,” “The Fugitive,” “Sing Me Back Home” and “Branded Man.” SEE HAGGARD / PAGE 8



CRAVING KARAOKE? Karaoke and DJ lists are online at

Coffeehouses, Cafés and Eateries Small Potatoes: 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, Yellow Moon Café, 110 N. Front St., Cobden; $10; www.yellowmoon; 618-893-2233. Howlin’ at the Moon: 8 p.m.-midnight, Saturday, Dec. 17, Yellow Moon Café, 110 N. Front St., Cobden. Jam and open mic night hosted by John Vitt and Ray Hogan;; 618-893-2233.

Wineries Dan Barron: 2-5:30 p.m. Saturday, Blue Sky Vineyard Bill Harper: 2-5:30 p.m. Sunday, Blue Sky Vineyard Dirt Water Fox: 2-5 p.m. Saturday, Von Jakob Orchard

Nyte Flyte: 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Von Jakob Orchard Howlin’ at the Moon: 4-8 p.m. Saturday, The Bluffs Vineyard and Winery Larry Dillard/Blues Therapy: 3-7 p.m. Sunday, The Bluffs Vineyard and Winery

WANT TO BE LISTED? Call 618-351-5089 or email brenda.kirkpatrick TONIGHT CARBONDALE Hangar 9: The Farewell Drifters, 9 p.m.

SUNDAY Alto Vineyards: Illinois 127, Alto Pass, or 618-893-4898 Blue Sky Vineyard: 3150 S. Rocky Comfort Road, Makanda; 618-995-9463 or The Bluffs Vineyard and Winery: 140 Buttermilk Hill Road, Ava; 618-763-4447 or Honker Hill Winery: 4861 Spillway Road, Carbondale: 618-549-5517 Lincoln Heritage Winery: 772 Kaolin Road, Cobden; 618-833-3783 Rustle Hill Winery: US 51, Cobden; 618-893-2700 or StarView Vineyards: 5100 Wing Hill Road, Cobden; 618 893-9463 or Von Jakob Orchard: 230 Illinois 127, Alto Pass; 618-893-4600 or Walker’s Bluff: North on Reed Station Road, Carterville; 618-9858463 or www.walkers

MARION Marion Eagles: Steve Kesler & Wing It, 7-11 p.m. STEELEVILLE American Legion: Country Aces/Christmas Dance, 2-5:30 p.m.

MONDAY MARION Marion Youth Center: Ragtag Band, 7-10 p.m. WEST FRANKFORT Wit and Wisdom: George Sisk/Jim White/ Gene Stiman, 7-10 p.m.

TUESDAY WEST FRANKFORT WB Ranch Barn: WB Ranch Band, 6:30-9:30 p.m.

WEDNESDAY HERRIN Herrin American Legion: Timberline, 7 p.m.

FRIDAY CARBONDALE Tres Hombres: Four Next Door, 10 p.m. Hangar 9: One More Round: A tribute to Johnny, 10 p.m.

LAKE OF EGYPT Ramesses Lounge at the Lake of Egypt: Mixed Company WHITTINGTON Corner Dance Hall: Liberty Road Band, 7:30-10:30 p.m.

SATURDAY CARBONDALE Tres Hombres: Mathien, 10 p.m. Hangar 9: Soul Glo, 8 p.m. LAKE OF EGYPT Ramesses Lounge at the Lake of Egypt: Mixed Company

MARION American Legion: Dave Caputo, 7-11 p.m. Marion Eagles: Steve Kesler & Wing It, 7-11 p.m. WHITTINGTON Corner Dance Hall: Jeff Carver Variety Show/Dance, 7:30-10:30 p.m.

20’s Hideout Restaurant: 2602 Wanda Drive, Marion 618-997-8325 Anna VFW: 70 VFW Lane, Anna 618833-5182 Carbondale Eagles: 1206 W. Linden, Carbondale 618-529-9345 Coloni’s Bar & Grill: 3 Park Plaza, Herrin 618-988-5341 Corner Dance Hall: 200 Franklin St., Whittington 618-303-5266 Coulterville VFW: 511 VFW St., Coulterville 618-758-9009 Diver Down: 199 E. Main St., Golconda 618-683-3483 Duncan Dance Barn: 13545 Spring Pond Road, Benton 618-435-6161 Enrico’s: 208 S. Main St., Royalton 618-984-2071 Hangar 9: 511 S. Illinois Ave., Carbondale; 618-549-0511. Hurley’s: 1504 W. Broadway Boulevard, Johnston City John Brown’s on the Square: 1000 Tower Square, Marion 618-997-2909 Key West: 1108 W. Main, Carbondale 618-351-5998 Kip & Traci’s Colonial Club: 1602 Old Creal Springs Road, Marion 618-9976989 Linemen’s Lounge: 100 E. Broadway, Johnston City Lion’s Cave: South Street, Thompsonville 618-218-4888 Maddie’s Pub and Grub: 14960 Illinois 37, Johnston City 618-983-8107 Marion American Legion: Longstreet Road, Marion 618-997-6168 Marion Eagles: Rural Route 3, Marion 618-993-6300 Marion Elks: .204 S. Market St., Marion 618-993-3151 Marion Youth Center: 211 E. Boulevard St., Marion 618-922-7853 Mollie’s: 107 E. Union St., Marion 618997-3424 Murphysboro Elks Lodge: 1809 Shomaker Drive Murphysboro 618684-4541. Murphysboro Moose Lodge: 9663 Old Illinois 13; Murphysboro 618-6843232 Old Country Store Dance Barn: Main Street, Thompsonville 618-218-4676 Park Plaza Pub: 3 Park Plaza, Herrin, 618-988-1556 Perfect Shot Bar & Billiards: 3029 S. Park Ave., Herrin, 618-942-4655 Pinch Penny Pub/Copper Dragon: 700 E. Grand, Carbondale 618-549-3348 PK’s: 308 S. Illinois Ave., Carbondale 618-529-1124 Pyramid Acres Marina: 12171 Marina Road, Marion 618-964-1184 Scarlett’s Music Barn: 207 Potter St., White Ash 618-997-4979 Stan’s Place: Shawneetown 618-2693083 Steelhorse Saloon and Campground: 202 Dewmaine Lane, Carterville 618-985-6713 Trackside Dance Barn: 104 Rock St., Spillertown 618-993-3035 Tres Hombres: 119 N. Washington St., Carbondale 618-457-3308 WB Ranch Barn: 1586 Pershing Road, West Frankfort 618-937-3718 Wit and Wisdom Nutritional Site: 225 E. Poplar St., West Frankfort 618937-3070 Xrossroads: 101 Rushing Drive, Herrin 618-993-8393 Zeigler Eagles: 114 N. Main St., Zeigler 618-596-5651

FLIPSIDE Thursday, December 15, 2011 Page 7





Christian Concert: 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, Historic Twelve Days of Liberty Theater in downtown Christmas: Vince Gill Murphysboro. Nathan Clark and Amy Grant, Friday, George, Mark Stoffel and Dec. 16, The Aiken Ross Sermons will present a Theatre at The Centre, Christian-based concert 715 Locust St., Evansville; from their Christmas album, $44.50-$79.50; “Still,” and favorites from a previous release, or 800-745-3000 or “Midwinter’s Eve.” Admission is by requested donation. Smoky Hollow String Children younger than 12 Band: An Old Timey must be accompanied by an Christmas, 7-9 p.m. adult. 618-684-5880. Saturday, Dec. 17, John A. A Country Christmas Logan Museum, Edith Street, Show: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Murphysboro; fiddle tunes, Dec. 17, Kentucky Opry, 88 carols; refreshments; Chilton Lane, Benton, Ky. Tickets are $17 for adults; $7.50/$10; 12 and under Senior $16; Student $10; free; 618-684-4397 or Child $10. 888-459-8704. 618-684-3455.

Holiday Concerts





Blend brings back its ‘Doo Wop Christmas’ CARBONDALE — Last year, Southern Illinois’ premier a capella group started a new tradition. Blend, which has been developing a national reputation since forming a few years ago, will renew the spirit of the holidays again with the second installment of “A Doo Wop Christmas.” The group’s front man, Johnathan Estes, said the inaugural event was a rousing success and warranted an encore. Blend returns to Varsity Center for the Arts with performances at 7 p.m. Dec. 19, 20, 22 and 23. Matinee performances are also scheduled for 2 p.m. Dec. 22 and 23.

Tickets for the shows are $12 in advance and $15 at the door. They can be purchased by calling 618-713-0641 or at First Bank, 1500 W. Main in Carbondale. As with all Blend shows, this Christmas spectacular will feature comedy, choreography and memories jam-packed into a one-hour show. Tunes by artists like the Beach Boys and the Drifters will be highlighted, among others. Appearances by special guests including Frosty, Rudolph, Elvis and Santa are also scheduled. For more information, visit — Adam Testa


Blend will offer ‘A Doo Wop Christmas’ at Varsity Center for the Arts in Carbondale.

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8 Big Days

Dec. 15, 16, 17, 21, 22, 23, 24, 30

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HAGGARD: Set to perform in Paducah FROM PAGE 6 Haggard was afraid the public would not accept him as an artist once it was discovered he had been to prison. Cash told him to quit hiding from his past and made it known on his TV show that Haggard had been incarcerated. His career didn’t suffer. He released 34 consecutive Top 10 singles. He was named the Country Music Association’s Male Vocalist of the Year and Entertainer of the Year in 1970, placed in the Country Music Hall Of Fame in 1994 and was a Kennedy Center Honoree in 2010. VINCE HOFFARD can be

reached at 618-658-9095,





“Country Music Got a Hold on Me.” From there, he dives into Rock Western swing with “Hot Like That,” goes hangdog for the The Black Keys “El mandolinaccented lament Camino” *** This is a “Lillie Mae,” channels Buck straight-ahead rock ‘n’ roll album, and an excellent one. Owens with the propulsive twang of “Stay Out of My Last year’s “Brothers” was the Black Keys’ breakthrough, Dreams,” gets funky with the Oak Ridge Boys on a trip to garnering the Akron, Ohio, duo its best sales and several “Okolona, Tennessee,” and closes with the driving gospel Grammys on the strength of of “Don’t Leave Home the single “Tighten Up” (not Without Jesus.” coincidentally the sole track Interspersed among these produced by Danger Mouse) numbers are three and the album’s diverse, atmospheric but wholly soulful intensity. For “El distinct instrumentals, which Camino,” the duo’s seventh help round out the vibrant full-length album, guitarist/ portrait of a sideman who has vocalist Dan Auerbach and more than ably stepped to drummer Patrick Carney the front. decamped to Nashville, brought back Danger Mouse as songwriting partner, Jazz keyboard player and producer Christian McBride for the whole record, and “Conversations with dialed up the volume. Christian” ***½ Now 39, Although garage-band Christian McBride, the uberblues is still the bedrock, jazz bassist of his generation, these tracks share DNA with drops the big band and the the riff-happy best of T. Rex small groups to go one-onone (“Lonely Boy”), Led Zeppelin with each of 13 guests. These (“Little Black Submarines”), duets show how far the Philly and the Clash (“Hell of a native likes to roam — from Season”). There’s nothing funk to Latin jazz to baroque subtle here: “El Camino” is — and the respect he pure high-octane rock and, as commands. the title implies, perfectly Sting is perhaps the most calibrated to be heard at prominent. Their take of maximum volume on a road “Consider Me Gone” is trip. passionate if a bit forced.

New Music

McBride’s bowed bass is a perfect complement to the Kenny Vaughan “V” ***½ late Billy Taylor’s homey Kenny Vaughan has been the piano on “Spiritual.” He inspires pianist Chick Corea guitar slinger in Marty to go modern on “Tango Stuart’s Fabulous Superlatives for 10 years, and Improvisation 1,” while his the Colorado native has been funky urgency gets singer Dee Dee Bridgewater to lay an in-demand accompanist some spirited sass all over since he hit Nashville in the “It’s Your Thing.” late 1980s. Duets in other hands are “V” is Vaughan’s first solo often dreary affairs, but wit album, and it’s, well, superlative. A brisk and varied and derring-do are never far away for McBride. He and set of originals, it blends violinist Regina Carter find impressive instrumental the blues in Bach on “Fat mastery with down-to-earth Bach and Greens.” And his charm. duet on “Chitlins and Gefilte Backed by the Fabulous Fish” with actress Gina Superlatives, including Gershon on the twangy Jew’s Stuart, Vaughan starts off harp is a goof. appropriately with the — MCT rollicking honky-tonk of

Country/ Blues




Marching to Appomattox: The Footrace that Ended the Holiday Extravaganza: Civil War, The Beck Family Little Egypt Art Centre, 601 Center Gallery, Cedarhurst Tower Square, Marion; Center for the Arts, Mount features art, photographs, Vernon; original paintings by jewelry, Christmas décor and Ken Stark; through Dec. 31; gift ideas; through Jan. 15; 618-998-8530 or Shrode Photography Competition Exhibit: The Shrode Art Center Regenhardt Gallery, Exhibits Cedarhurst Center for the Members’ Show: Featuring Arts, Mount Vernon; through Dec. 31; Artist of the Month, Nancy Transformation: Paintings Loving, Yeiser Art Center, Paducah; fine art and crafts; by Linda Hostalek, 9 a.m.5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 through Dec. 17; 270-442a.m.-noon Saturdays, Central 2453 or Showcase, offices of Realty OFF THE WALL Holiday Group Artist Exhibition: The Central, Murdale Shopping Yellow Moon Café and anthill Center, Carbondale; through Dec. 31. gallery and vintage curioDr. Leo Gadzepko and sities, Front Street, Cobden; Jessica Edmond: Fern Fair more than 60 area artists; Gallery, 8609 Giant City through Dec. 23; 618-457Road, Carbondale; through 7641; and end of December; 3376; Maturity and Its Muse: Red Rock Landscapes: Cedarhurst Center for the Tribeca Gallery, downtown Arts, Mount Vernon; artists Paducah; photographer Larry over the age of 70; Mitchell Heavrin; through Jan. 11; 270Museum Main Gallery; 898-6056 or through Dec. 31; Skirting Convention: The History of Jefferson County: Highlights from the Illinois Women Artists, 1840-1940: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Jefferson County Historical Tuesday through Saturday Society and Village, Mitchell and noon-5 p.m. Sunday, Museum’s Beal Grand Corridor Gallery, Cedarhurst, Lakeview Museum of Arts Mount Vernon; through Dec. and Sciences, Peoria, through Jan. 16; Quincy Art 31;

Art Events

CCA encourages local shopping for art lovers CARBONDALE — Carbondale Community Arts is asking people to consider shopping local in the homestretch of the holiday season. CCA is presenting “Artful Giving: Local Retail Options” at the Carbondale Civic Center Corridor Gallery through the end of the year. The display showcases locally handmade gift ideas from a variety of galleries and retail shops. The items on display are available for direct purchase or by contacting CCA at 618-457-5100 or


Center, Quincy, Feb. 10 through March 18. Exhibition examines a century of women artists who defied conventions by presenting works by 72 women from all over Illinois including works by Southern Illinois artists Amy Kirkpatrick and Maude Parmley Craig. Janet Bixler: Paintings, Harrisburg District Library; through Feb. 5; artwork for sale. Creative Visions: Work of ceramic artist Greg Gibbs, woodworker Joe Landon, sculptor Darren Miller, glass artist Michelle Rial, painter Nina Weiss and jewelry artist Sandra Wilcoxon, The Southern Illinois Art and Artisans Center, Whittington; free; through March 15; 618629-2220. The Legacy of Katherine Kuh: Building the University’s Art Collection, University Museum, SIU; Katherine Kuh, Chicago art connoisseur, art critic for the Saturday Review and gallery owner purchased art for SIU including some of the major artists of the 20th Century; through May 11; or 618-453-5388. From Humble Beginnings: Lincoln’s Illinois 1830-1861: Illinois State Museum at Rend Lake presents Part II of an original exhibition exploring aspects of the

THEATER state that Lincoln called home, The Southern Illinois Art and Artisans Center, Whittington; through May 13; 618-629-2220. Ongoing art exhibit: Photographs of Juhree Veach, mosaics from Janet Altoff and sculpture from Tom Horn, StarView Vineyards, 5100 Wing Hill Road, Cobden; 618-893-9463 or www.starviewvineyards. com. Jo Loomis: Williamson County Pavilion, Marion; paintings of landscapes, seascapes, people, pets; 618-889-5330 or

Receptions New Year’s Eve Art Exhibition: The Paducah Wastelanders, a group of regional artists native or longtime residents of Paducah, will host their annual New Year’s Eve Art Exhibition and party at the Yeiser Art Center in the Market House in downtown Paducah. Opening reception will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 31 with refreshments served. Exhibit will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 6 and 7. Free and open to the public. 270-442-2453, or

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FLIPSIDE Thursday, December 15, 2011 Page 9










Chipmunks bring back some of original’s charm in third film ‘Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked’ *1/2 Rated G; starring Jason Lee, David Cross, Jenny Slate and the squeaky voices of Justin Long, Christina Applegate, Jesse McCartney, Anna Faris and Amy Poehler; directed by Mike Mitchell; opening Friday at ShowPlace 8 in Carbondale and AMC Centre 8 in Marion BY ROGER MOORE MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE NEWS

A Sarah Palin joke? A Charlie Sheen wisecrack? Is this a Chipmunks movie or a Letterman monologue?

As current as a Lady Gaga cover, if not quite as relevant, Alvin and the Chipmunks “Munk Up” for their third digitally animated turn on the big screen — “Alvin and the Chipmunks: ChipWrecked,” a “Cast Away” take-off that parks the three chipmunks, their three Chipette counterparts and their human family on a deserted island. Most adults would sooner gouge their ears out than sit through these kids’ films. But for parents in need of a reference point, “Chip-wrecked” is twice as funny as 2009’s “The Squeakquel.” And the return of Jason Lee as Dave Seville, the

rodent wrangler who keeps our pop-singing ground squirrels in line, gives the picture a hint of the heart that made 2007’s “Alvin and the Chipmunks” work, at least for its intended audience. This time, the squeakers are off on a cruise before performing at a big international music awards show. And Alvin being Alvin, mischief is made and puns are purloined. “I like my tails shaken, not stirred,” The Big A (voiced by Justin Long) chirps as he dons a tux and sneaks out to hit the casino. But that’s nothing compared to the disaster Alvin creates on deck. A kite and hang-gliding

accident leads to Chipmunks and Chipettes overboard, with Dave and their disgraced manager, Ian (David Cross), now a costumed ship’s mascot, tumbling in after them. They wash up on an island, the chipmunks in one pack, the humans in another. Each must find food, find ways to make fire and hope for rescue. Maybe they’ll even find each other. Simon, “the responsible one,” suffers a spider bite that turns him into a French-accented adventurer who goes by the name “See-MONE.” Thus Alvin finds himself having to be “the responsible one.” Kids may get the “Cast Away” gags — the rodents meet a longtime island dweller (Jenny Slate) who has made friends out of “Rawlings,” Dunlop,” “Callaway” gear, where Tom Hanks settled for a volleyball named “Wilson.” Kids probably won’t catch the “Lord of the Flies” references. These are urban animals, so expecting them to know how to rough it is a bit

Rev. Robert Sabo, Pastor • 457-8785


‘Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-wrecked’ opens Friday in Carbondale and Marion.

much to ask, even though they’re “used to living in the wild.” “We used to be used to living in the wild,” Brittany (a helium-voiced Christina Applegate) corrects. But at least there’s always time for a song, from “Party Rock” and “Bad Romance” to The Go Go’s “Vacation” and the campfire favorite, “Kumbaya.” The gags — Chipettes having a dance battle with cruise ship passengers from the Jersey Shore — and the jokes are pretty tame, the script relying a



bit too heavily on sass and cracks aimed at kids. It’s what you’d expect from a chipmunks movie directed by the fellow who handled “Surviving Christmas” and “Shrek Forever After” — not much. But the message — about giving kids responsibility — and the tone make it hard to hate on these chipmunks. At least they took the time to sum up the whole movie in one Chipette-to-Chipmunk put-down: “You can make all the jokes you want, Alvin, but you can’t make this interesting.”

220 North Tower Rd. Carbondale, IL

Sunday, Dec. 18:

6:00 PM Children’s Christmas Program 7:00 PM March to the Manger

Christmas Eve: Dec. 24 Candlelight Services 7:00 PM Traditional Candlelight 9:00 PM Contemporary Worship with Drama

Page 10 Thursday, December 15, 2011 FLIPSIDE







‘Young Adult’ Charlize Theron stars in ‘Young Adult,’ playing Mavis Gray, a writer of teen literature who returns to her small hometown to relive her glory days and attempt to reclaim her happily married high school sweetheart. When returning home proves more difficult than she thought, Gray forms an unusual bond with a former classmate, who hasn’t quite gotten over high school either. The film, directed by Jason Reitman, also stars Patrick Wilson, Patton Oswalt and Elizabeth Reaser. It is rated R for language and some sexual content. ‘Young Adult’ opens Friday at University Place 8 in Carbondale.

Specializing in Christian Literature Mark J. Akin • Bookseller

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FLIPSIDE Thursday, December 15, 2011 Page 11










Downey’s second ‘Holmes’ flick a fun romp ‘Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows’ ** ½

Sherlock Holmes’ nemesis Professor Moriarty off camera, an unseen menace made all the more Rated PG-13 for intense menacing by his absence. Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock sequences of violence and Holmes: A Game of action and some drug Shadows” puts the material; starring Robert infamous Professor M. Downey Jr., Jude Law, face-to-face with Holmes. Rachel McAdams, Noomi They parry, trade threats Rapace and Stephen Fry; and play chess. But as the directed by Guy Ritchie; evil genius is played by the unimposing Jared Harris opening Friday at ShowPlace 8 in Carbondale (“Mad Men”), you can’t help but wonder why and AMC Centre 8 in Robert Downey Jr. doesn’t Marion just dope-slap this shrimp and “crack on.” BY ROGER MOORE It’s not a fatal case of MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE NEWS miscasting. “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of For much of cinema’s Shadows,” is still a romp, history, the movies have albeit an overlong one. But had the good sense to keep Hitchcock’s maxim —

merry feastivus

“Good villains make good thrillers” — holds true. And since Ritchie burned through his best bad guy (the cunning Mark Strong) in his first Holmes film, it’ll have to do. Downey is more Chaplinesque, more whimsical and more English in this sequel, a two-fisted howitzerbarreled blast that manages to be lighter, funnier and yet more violent than the first Downey-Ritchie Holmes film. Check out the face Downey pulls when Holmes realizes one leg of his cross-Europe pursuit of Moriarty will involve riding on horseback. “They are dangerous at both ends, and crafty in

the middle,” he quips, though he’s already landed his laugh with his look. Holmes is about to lose Watson (Jude Law), his foil and bantering partner, to matrimony. And botching the stag party and almost ruining the wedding itself won’t be enough of a sendoff. It is “our last adventure, Watson. I intend to make the most of it.” That entails derailing the honeymoon. Holmes has pieced together the puzzle that is the powder keg of Europe in 1891, and all the fuses lead back to Moriarty. Ritchie takes his slowmotion violence fetish to artful new extremes and treats us to more scenes in which Holmes’ peerless powers of concentration and perception give him an almost supernatural ability to play through the variables in a coming fight in his mind, before actually martial-arts-ing


Jude Law (left) and Robert Downey Jr. star in ‘Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows,’ opening Friday.

his way past legions of evil henchman. Downey and Law click like a polished comedy team, with Law more than holding his own with Downey’s hilarious excesses. Downey makes us believe this “manic” (Watson prefers “psychotic”) detective is living on “a diet of coffee, tobacco and coca leaves.” It’s a role informed by the actor’s street cred. Noomi Rapace ably leaves her “Dragon

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Page 12 Thursday, December 15, 2011 FLIPSIDE

Tattoo” behind as a gypsy in search of her anarchist brother, who is mixed up in Moriarty’s plans. And Stephen Fry vamps it up as Holmes’ starchy Oscar Wilde-side brother. If only the recycled Bond-film gadgets and plot didn’t weigh “Game of Shadows” down. If only they’d spent the cash on a bad guy with stature, instead of taking “the banality of evil” literally. Playing this “Game” might have been even more fun.

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1309 Sadler Rd. Pomona, IL 62975

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Flipside 12-15  

Tuned into Christmas. 1940s radio play comes to life on Sesser stage.

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