Cheap Thrills GOLDEN MELODY: Annexation anxieties are temporarily forgotten when that rollicking burg to the northwest hosts the Oro Valley Jazz Festival on Saturday and Sunday, October 18 and 19. The two-day roster of entertainment reads like a local Who's Who of top players. They include the UA Studio Jazz Ensemble, the Jeff Haskell Trio, the Rob Wright Dixieland Showband, Lisa Otey, Red Letter Edition, the Tom Ervin Quintet, Jeff Sand, and the Big Band Express. Also on tap are plenty of chow, kids' activities and art demonstrations, with proceeds benefiting disadvantaged youths in Oro Valley and Tucson.

On Saturday, a special "Afterglow" concert will also be held from 7 to 11 p.m. in the Sheraton El Conquistador Resort, 10000 N. Oracle Road. All events are free.

Festival runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and tomorrow in Dennis Weaver Park, 23 W. Calle Concordia. Call 575-0462 for more information.

POWER LINES: The Make a Date With a Poet series keeps rolling lyrically along. On Saturday, October 18, Tucson poet and electrical contractor Richard Tavenner reads from his gritty desert work at 7 p.m. in The Book Mark, 5001 E. Speedway Blvd. Admission is free. Call 881-5180 for details.

OLD SPICE: What do Jewish tradition and nuclear-level salsa have in common? Plenty, when the Tucson Jewish Community Center hosts the Sukkah and Salsa Festival on Sunday, October 19.

In case you were wondering, a sukkah is a three-sided booth where families customarily dine to commemorate Sukkot, an eight-day festival recalling the journey of Jews from Egypt to the Promised Land. During that pilgrimage, they lived in tents and booths, otherwise known as sukkot.

As for salsa, we figure you know that one. This year's festival will include a salsa tasting competition and sukkah decorating, along with songs, storytelling, and demonstrations ranging from vegetable flowers by Sous Chef Catering to a prickly pear discussion with food writer Sandal English.

Free event runs from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Tucson Jewish Community Center, Dodge Boulevard and River Road. Call 299-3000 for details.

LEGACY OF PAIN: Ongoing for nearly 30 years, the brutal fighting in Northern Ireland has inflicted countless casualties and monumental bitterness. During that time, the Irish Republican Army has become known as the most sophisticated guerrilla movement in the Western world, and its political arm, Sinn Fein, has become an equally formidable force. Throughout the Republican Movement's struggle, America has likewise been involved, with arms and money from the Irish-American community, and plenty of political maneuvering by Washington.

Today, the PBS series Frontline takes an unflinching look at this national conflict with international players in Behind the Mask: The IRA and Sinn Fein. The documentary tells the inside story of the IRA and Sinn Fein through incredible access to the members of the movement, the British security forces, and Irish, British and American leaders.

Behind the Mask airs at 9 p.m. Tuesday, October 21, on KUAT Channel 6. TW

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