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MANDOLIN MEISTER. You may recall him as the long-time music director for A Prairie Home Companion, or for his dazzling back-up work with luminaries like Emmylou Harris and Chet Atkins.
Either way, Peter Ostroushko is considered one of the finest fiddle and mandolin players on the current scene. He also sings both traditional and funny self-penned songs like Horizontal Hold, a paean to holing up in the gnarly Minnesota winter. Now he's joined by guitarist Dean Magraw for a rare Tucson appearance.
Show time is 8 p.m. in the Unitarian Universalist Church, 4831 E. 22nd St. Advance tickets are $12, $10 for seniors and In Concert! members, and available at Hear's Music, Antigone Books, Guitars Etc., or by calling 327-4809. Tickets are $14 and $12 at the door.
POETIC LUST. Although he's a newcomer to Tucson, Jesse Lessing's poetry is a raw powerhouse perfect for this rugged landscape. After nearly a decade of creating verse, he shares his words as part of the Make A Date With a Poet series.
The free reading is 6 p.m. in the New Life Cafe, 4841 E. Speedway. Call 881-5180 for information.
BURLEY HURLEY. He was the explorer's explorer, a tough-as-nails Aussie who trekked across the tundra as official photographer for Sir Ernest Shackleton's ill-fated Imperial Trans-Antartic Expedition of 1914-1916. For two years the party's ship, the aptly named Endurance, was icebound in the Weddell Sea due to incredibly cold conditions. Hurley captured the odyssey in gritty, priceless photography that reveals the team's own endurance.
Now Michael Gray, curator at the National Trust Fox Talbot Museum in England, presents the photographer's story with Hurley the Irrepressible.
The free lecture is 6 p.m. in the UA Center for Creative Photography Auditorium, on the south end of the pedestrian underpass at Speedway and Park Avenue. For information, call 621-7968.
LET'S DANCE. Party down with high-minded intent at Tucson's oldest charity ball, Baile de Las Flores. Now in its 80th season, the ball includes a silent auction, dinner and dancing, with performances by the Twilight Band, Mariachi Tierra del Sol and Baile Folklorico de San Juan. Work by Tucson artist Duane Bryers will also be raffled off, with all proceeds benefiting St. Luke's Home, a non-profit residential facility for elderly women.
The fiesta is 6 p.m. in Loew's Ventana Canyon Resort, 7000 N. Resort Drive. Tickets are $100. Reservations are required; call 299-0606.
TIERRA TOTS. Those closest to the ground celebrate in appropriate style at the Earth Day Festival and Parade, hosted by the Tucson Children's Museum.
Tots and adult alike will be treated to booths with plenty of information about recycling, water conservation and natural resources, along with green goods galore. That's in addition to the costume and float-festooned parade, which fires up at 10 a.m.
The party runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Tucson Children's Museum, 200 S. Sixth Ave. Admission is $5, $4 for seniors and $3 for kids. Call 792-9985 for information.
MACHO CAMACHO. Latin legend Ray Camacho brings his hip-shaking entourage to town as part of his electrifying World Tour 2000.
This global purveyor of musica Mexicana--from sultry cumbias and hypnotizing mambos to romantic boleros--has been topping the charts for eons. Now Camacho and his seven-piece orchestra arrive in anticipation of a new, soon-to-be-released CD.
Show time is 8 p.m. in the TCC, 260 S. Church Ave. Advance tickets are $12, and available at the TCC box office and Dillard's. Tickets are $15 at the door. Call 791-4101 for details.
THREE-RING RENDEZVOUS. What do you get when you combine the European art circus with a glitzy Las Vegas review? None other than Cirque Ingenieux, a "breathtaking and magical new circus extravaganza" coming to Centennial Hall.
An international hit since its 1997 debut, the ensemble features some of the planet's top circus performers in a fantastic odyssey. Filled with dramatic sets and exotic costumes, the fanfare unfolds around the tale of a young girl who dreams of becoming a trapeze artist. Her aspiration comes to life during a late-night visit to the Big Top, where she's transported into a strange new world populated by jugglers, tumblers, acrobats, wizards, clowns and sorceresses. Together they lead her on a spellbinding journey across time and space.
Performances are 2 and 7:30 p.m. in the UA Centennial Hall, inside the main gate east of Park Avenue. Tickets range from $24 to $36, half-price for children and students, with discounts for UA faculty and staff. Tickets are available at the Centennial Hall box office, or by calling 621-3341.
SACRED SUSTENANCE. Enjoy the fruits of labor when Southern Arizona vintners pop their corks for the 15th annual Blessing of the Vine Festival.
Held in and around the tiny burg of Elgin, located 45 minutes southeast of Tucson near Sonoita, the list of growers includes the Saint Vincent Winery, Chateau Noir, Mountain View Cellars, Sonoita Valley Winery, Black Oak Cellars and The Village of Elgin Wine. Sample tasting tops the day's events, along with music by the Dixie Sidewinders, Andy Hershey's Country Western Band and Sierra Vista's Rickety Rockettes, among others. Gustatory royalty will also be afoot, with the crowning of Arizona's King and Queen of Grape Stomping, and the King and Queen of Chili Making.
The festival runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $10, and free for children. For directions and other information, call (520) 455-9309.
BIG BUG. It rivals the Kosovo tragedy and tops Monica's tale as a national preoccupation. We're talking about the infamous Y2K Bug, and it's about to emerge from the technological woodwork.
While predictions span the gamut, there's little question the computer critter will at least raise a little hell. Will the Old Pueblo be prepared? That's the question today when the Tucson Year 2000 Center hosts a discussion on the pending bugaboo.
The meeting is 6:45 p.m. in the St. Mark's Presbyterian Church Geneva Hall, 3809 E. Third St. Call 792-6438 for information.
CHARITABLE FOOD CHAIN. Visit our hometown lions, tigers and bears--and help hungry humans--with a visit to the Reid Park Zoo. Trips to this urban jungle are always a kick. And you can kick a little gravy to Tucson Community Food Bank through April, when one can of chow gets one tike in for free.
The Reid Park Zoo is north of 22nd Street, and east of Country Club Road. Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Regular admission is $3.50, $2.50 for seniors, 75 cents for children ages 5 to 14, and free for children ages 4 and under. Call 791-3204 for details.
BASEBALL BELTERS. They're considered Tucson's premier male choir. Today the thundering Sons of Orpheus live up to that reputation, and give a nod to the boys of summer with a lunchtime performance of favorite baseball songs.
Founded in 1991 by UA music professor Grayson Hirst, these warblers hail from all walks of life, ranging from professional musicians to businessmen, retirees, students and seniors. Their repertoire likewise runs the gamut, from classical to popular literature for male voices that includes all periods, styles and languages.
The free performance is noon in the UMC DuVal Auditorium, 1501 N. Campbell Ave. For information, call 626-7301.
DIG DEEP. It's a depth of suffering most of us can barely comprehend. But, as always, the American Red Cross folks are doing their level best to help the beleaguered Kosovo refugees.
To bolster the relief supply chain, the ARC has committed $1.5 million they've already received for warehouse space, forklifts, vehicles, relief supplies and the like.
But the real battle has only begun. According to acting president Steve Bullock, the organization still needs another $1 million per week for the next several months just to meet basic needs in the Balkans.
You can chip in by calling the ARC Southern Arizona Chapter at 318-6740.
BISBEE REBOUND. Twenty years after its bookshelf debut, Bisbee '17 is back in fine style.
Recently reissued with a slick new cover, the book chronicles one of the West's wildest mining towns, and the event that solidified its place in history--namely the deportation of some 2,000 striking workers to New Mexico's badlands in 1917.
Penned by Robert Houston, director of the UA Creative Writing Program, Bisbee '17 emerged in the late 1970s among the ranks of that era's hot journalistic novels such as E.L. Doctorow's Ragtime, and Robert Coover's Public Burning.
Houston is also the author of several other novels, including The Nation Thief and The Fourth Codex.
Today he'll read from his work, in an appearance hosted by the UA Poetry Center. The free reading is 8 p.m. in the UA Modern Languages Auditorium, north of the main mall. For information, call 321-7760.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT. The Tucson Rape Crisis Center continues its mission of assisting violent assault victims with Dine Out for Safety.
Held in conjunction with three fine eateries, this tasty fundraiser includes entertainment, celebrity hosts like City Councilman José Ibarra, former Councilwoman Molly McKasson and UA Football Coach Dick Tomey, and a raffle for a San Francisco junket. A portion of dinner proceeds goes to the center's crucial cause.
The event runs from 5 to 9:30 p.m. For reservations, call Ovens Restaurant, 577-9001; Firecracker Bistro, 318-1118; or Nonie New Orleans Bistro, 319-1965. For general information, call 626-2192.
BEER AND BRAZIL. Tucson's favorite little tavern fires up the big screen with a great new film series. Better known for fine ales than crisp cinema, the Nimbus Brewing Co. nonetheless serves a stout menu of movie classics, including tonight's showing of The Young Ones, followed by Brazil.
The movies and popcorn are free, and the beer nearly is too, with heady hometown brews ranging from $2 to $2.50 a pint. Compare that with over-priced victuals served at other film houses, and you're talking a real ganga.
City Week includes events selected by Calendar Editor Tim Vanderpool. Event information is accurate as of press time. The Weekly recommends calling event organizers to check for last-minute changes in location, time, price, etc. To have material considered, please send complete information at least 11 days prior to the Thursday issue date to: Tucson Weekly, P.O. Box 2429, Tucson, Arizona 85702, or fax information to 792-2096, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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