When Lucy Lipschitz started thinking about how she should celebrate her birthday a couple years ago, she thought about what her deceased parents would want her to do.
"They'd like it if I did something nice for someone else," Lipschitz said.
And that's how the "I Love Lucy Belly Dance Birthday Show" was born. Lipschitz, a belly dance teacher, decided to do a show for charity on her birthday every year from that moment forward. Originally, her goal was to help out a different charity each year that normally didn't receive much attention from the public. Lipschitz shopped around, but many of the charities she looked into didn't seem too enthusiastic about being involved in her event. She was dismayed until a friend referred her to the nonprofit group Spirit of Service.
Spirit of Service is a charity organization devoted to helping needy families by providing them with health care on a sliding-fee basis.
Lipschitz got in touch with executive director/founder Donna Tullar, and there was an automatic connection between the two women, Lipschitz said. Since she felt such a close bond with Tullar, and really liked what Spirit of Service was doing for the community, she decided she wanted to help the organization every year.
This year's celebration will be held at Green Fire Bookshop, which Lipschitz said will make the party an emotional event, because the shop will be closing June 30.
The show will include a lot of belly dancing, and Lipschitz is trying to get dancers from other genres involved as well. In addition to all the shimmying and shaking that will be going on, there will be vendors selling things, ranging from fruit-flavored tobacco to metaphysical items.
And, of course, there will be birthday cake.
Suggested donation is $2, and all proceeds benefit the Spirit of Service Center. --S.B.
Megalodon, a huge, ancient shark who would have given the one in Jaws a run for its money, is the featured attraction this upcoming weekend at the T-Rex Museum. The museum, which is aimed at younger audiences, focuses on dinosaurs but includes lots of information about earlier times and creatures, too. It's also a part of the International BioPark Foundation, which focuses on conservation and animal preservation.
The T-Rex Museum opened in March 2003 and has live animals and insects in addition to the ancient stuff. Some of the live critters include Madagascar hissing cockroaches, tarantulas and a recently acquired 13-foot albino Burmese python.
Sharia Des Jardins, programs director for the museum, said that sharks have been around since the times of the dinosaurs.
"So for us, they (sharks) are part of the story we talk about as people come through the museum," Des Jardins said.
While children can expect to hear all sorts of cool facts about the megalodon, they shouldn't expect to see any shark fossils--other than shark teeth. Since shark skeletons are made of cartilage and not bone, their skeletons rarely fossilize. The only fossils sharks really leave behind are their fear-inducing chompers, which they shed at a voluminous rate. Over a decade-long lifespan, a shark can expect to lose around 10,000 teeth, Des Jardins said.
Because it's a megalodon-themed weekend, there will be pictures to color, movies to watch and games to play, all relating to the extinct shark. As part of their admission, kids also get a chance to dig in the museum's sandy "Paleo Pit," where they can hope to find fossilized goodies like shells, semi-precious stones and--maybe if they're lucky--some shark teeth.
Admission is $5 per person. --S.B.
Local artist Ed Goyette's work covers a wide variety of mediums and subject matters.
At his upcoming opening, Tucsonans will be given a chance to see a series of scenes from Fourth Avenue in black-and-white photography. The presentation will also feature a selection of his paintings and black-and-white photographs from New York City.
Goyette, a self-taught artist, took up painting as catharsis for the death of his father. "I wanted to do something to feel free to express myself," he said.
An avid artist, Goyette does paintings that reflect his feelings of the day, making the name of his presentation, Expressions, even more meaningful.
"People ask me, 'What's your style?' I have to tell them I really don't have one," says Goyette. The result, in addition to his black-and-white photography, is a large mix of painting styles and subjects.
For his photographs of Fourth Avenue, he tried to capture images that are recognizable and connective, he said. The scenes aim to "get everything into the composition" that reflect day-to-day life.
People might recognize landmarks in the photos immediately, but the photographs may put things in a new light.
Most of this collection will be on display at Bumsted's Bar and Grill until July. A dozen Fourth Avenue scenes will be on permanent display there.
While his work has been featured in other collaborations, this is Goyette's first major presentation.
The opening reception is Friday, June 3 from 7 to 10 p.m. at Bumsted's. --M.W.
When Lino Lucente went to adopt a cat from the Pima Animal Care Center, he couldn't help but notice that too many animals were being handled, with not enough manpower.
Instead of shrugging it off, this citizen chose to do something about it: hence, the upcoming concert at City Limits.
Next Thursday, three local bands with three different styles will take to the stage for this all-ages show to benefit the animal shelter.
People can rock out with the American Black Lung, go "emo" with the Goodbye Kiss (they list Jimmy Eat World and Pedro the Lion as influences) and groove to 12-piece funk band Cosmic Slop. Cosmic Slop features four singers, a horn section and a healthy sense of humor.
For one's rocking-out needs, "You can get into the pit," Lucente says. Fun is expected for all.
"I just wanted to raise money so they can do what they need," he said about how the money will benefit the center. The important focus is to raise awareness for, and try to help alleviate, the issue of overcrowding and understaffing at the shelter.
"I wanted to bring awareness to the people who can volunteer an hour of their time," Lucente said, which would allow each animal to receive more attention and care during the day.
The Pima Animal Care Center, at 4000 N. Silverbell Road, handles more than 16,000 animals a year.
Admission to the concert is $5, and all ticket proceeds go directly to the Pima Animal Care Center. Donations are also accepted.
To volunteer at the center, call 743-7550, ext. 206.
And remember, Lucente says, to spay and neuter your pets. --M.W.