The UA Lunar and planetary Lab has been working with NASA from the dawn of the space age and this week, the LPL is set to celebrate another milestone with the arrival of OSIRIS-REx at the asteroid Bennu. If you haven't been following this particular space adventure, OSIRIS-REx is a billion-dollar mission to recover samples from an asteroid. This ship was designed right here at the UA, and is being overseen by the LPL's Dante Lauretta. You can read the details in feature writer Jeff Gardner's preview of this week's Bennuval!, a celebration of OSIRIS-REx's upcoming deep-space rendezvous that's a mash-up of a TED Talk and an alt-rock concert.
And speaking of space: We are also bringing you an excerpt from UA astronomer Chris Impey's new book, Einstein's Monsters: The Life and Times of Black Holes. The book has already won a lot of praise since it hit bookshelves earlier this month, with Publishers Weekly calling it "an absorbing and lay-reader-friendly look at the intriguing dead stars called black holes."
Elsewhere in the Weekly this time around: Tucson Salvage columnist Brian Smith pens a deeply moving and revealing article about local musician Billy Sedlmr; comedy correspondent Linda Ray talks books with funnyman Steven Wright ahead of his show at downtown's Rialto Theatre; music contributor Brett Callwood finds out which version of Bruce Hornsby will perform at the Fox Theatre this weekend; arts writer Margaret Regan checks out Etherton Gallery's new Danny Lyon exhibit and bids farewell to two downtown landmarks; Calendar editor Emily Dieckman previews Arizona Theatre Company's upcoming production of The Music Man; Chow writer Mark Whittaker finds a table at Guillermo's Double L; movie critic Bob Grimm rounds up his thoughts about the Coen Brothers new Western anthology now on Netflix; and there's plenty more, from Dan Savage's excellent sex advice to your guides of what to do around town this week as the holiday season starts ramping up.
I can't leave this week without a note of congratulations for some of my favorite local authors for their scores in the New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards: Longtime local journalist Leo W. Banks' debut, Double Wide, was named Best Mystery Novel for 2018; Tom Miller won the top spot for a travel book for Cuba, Hot and Cold, a collection recounting what Miller learned about day-to-day life in Cuba during his many journeys to the island nation; and Greg McNamee was awarded a Best Nonfiction book for Tortillas, Tiswin & T-Bones. Congrats to all!
See you at Bennuval!
— Jim Nintzel Executive Editor
Hear Nintz talk about what's happening in Tucson's entertainment scene Wednesday mornings at 9:30 a.m. during The Frank Show on KLPX, 96.1 FM.