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QCA Today: April 29, 2016

This feature collects articles published online by the following Quad Cities-area media outlets: Quad-City Times, Rock Island Argus/Moline Dispatch, River Cities’ Reader, KWQC, and WQAD. It also includes...

Choosing Finance Over Farms: Scott County Chases Industry at the Expense of Agriculture

Choosing Finance Over Farms: Scott County Chases Industry at the Expense of Agriculture

On April 7, three of the five Scott County Supervisors – Carol Earnhardt, Jim Hancock, and Tom Sunderbruch – approved a stunningly short-sighted change to the Scott County Comprehensive Land Use...

A Minor History with a Major Impact: Author Gary W. Moore Discusses His Father’s Story, April 12-15

Gary W. Moore had lots of dots to connect about his father’s life. The problem was that, for many years, Gene Moore refused to talk about them. Gary Moore will be participating in a handful of local...

Baby Steps for Rock Island County: The Organization Shows Wobbly but Promising Signs of Growth

In a recent interview, Rock Island County Board Chair Ken “Moose” Maranda trotted out an old saying: “County government is only as good as the taxpayers want it to be.” He continued: “And that’s...

The Italian Rapscallion: Stand-up Comedian Tammy Pescatelli, March 5 at the Golden Leaf Banquet & Convention Center

It’s 8:08 a.m. when comedian and former Quad Cities resident Tammy Pescatelli calls for our arranged interview, and right off the bat, she apologizes, unnecessarily, for running eight minutes behind...

Beginning with the End: The Hauberg Civic Center Has an Ideal Suitor, but the Rock Island City Council Should Take Its Time

Undermining the Official Certainty of Vaccine Science

Excavating the Roots of Vaccination Anxiety: Eula Biss, January 14 at Augustana College

The Business of Medical Marijuana in Illinois: With a Restrictive Pilot Project, Dispensaries and Cultivators Are Betting on the Program’s Expansion

Filling a Major Mental-Health Gap: Can Local Hospitals Meet the Need for Inpatient Beds, or Is a New For-Profit Hospital the Answer?

Winners and Favorites from Our 2015 Short-Fiction Contest

Making a Killing: Ballet Quad Cities Premieres "Murder Mystery at the Ballet," October 9 through 17 at the Scottish Rite Cathedral

Enter the Reader’s 2015 Short-Fiction Contest: Spooky Stories! October 20 Deadline!

From Wasteland to Treasure: Nahant Marsh Marks 15 Years as a Nature Preserve

Now That the Magic Has Gone: “Damned City,” Quad Cities Author Matt Hentrich’s Debut Novel

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Commentary/Politics

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The Strange Story Behind Illinois’ First Asian-American Legislator

Theresa Mah (D-Chicago) was never given much of a chance at winning the 2nd House District Democratic primary race on March 15 against a well-known political name who had a huge demographic advantage....

Dishonoring Harriet Tubman

Dishonoring Harriet Tubman

When Harriet Tubman died in in March of 1913, the U.S. $20 bill bore George Washington’s portrait and the inscription “This certifies that there have been deposited in the treasury of the United States...

Statehouse Impasse Finally Cracks – a Little

A blog post appears to have helped at least temporarily break the long stalemate at the Illinois Statehouse. Representative Mike Fortner (R-West Chicago) wrote up a story, and I posted it on my CaptiolFax.com...

“Corruption” as a Propaganda Weapon

Sadly, some important duties of journalism, such as applying evenhanded standards on human-rights abuses and financial corruption, have been so corrupted by the demands of government propaganda –...

Threat of School Shutdown Could Help Push State Out of Crisis Mode

“The governor has linked things together,” Senate President John Cullerton said at a speech to the City Club of Chicago back in January. “We don’t have a budget because he’s got his Turnaround...

Public Budget Negotiations Represent an Improvement

12th Grade with Uncle Lar: Stop Hearing Motorcycles

Rauner’s Primary Reaction Illustrates His Separation from Reality

Hey, FDR Was a Fascist, Too!

Senate Primary Shows Potential Weakness in Rauner Strategy

Industrial Spot Zoning Would Carry a Hefty Price Tag for Scott County

In Primary Races, Both Sides Used Madigan’s Ruthless Playbook

Libertarians Versus the Isolationist Killers

An Open Letter to Local Law Enforcement

Illinois Stalemate Features Mirror-Image Opponents

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Movies

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Now Playing: Friday, April 29, through Thursday, May 5

Now Playing: Friday, April 29, through Thursday, May 5

For show schedule information, visit: 61 Drive-in Theatre, Maquoketa Blue Grass Drive-in Theatre, Blue Grass FilmScene, Iowa City Marcus Sycamore Cinema, Iowa City Putnam Museum, Davenport...

A Song of Ice and Mire: "The Huntsman: Winter's War" and "Elvis & Nixon"

A Song of Ice and Mire: "The Huntsman: Winter's War" and "Elvis & Nixon"

THE HUNTSMAN: WINTER’S WAR Imagine a live-action version of Disney’s Frozen minus the songs and charm, and designed by the production team behind HBO’s Game of Thrones. That’s The Huntsman: Winter’s...

PETA Principle: "The Jungle Book," "Barbershop: The Next Cut," and "Criminal"

THE JUNGLE BOOK Nearly all action movies, even those in which the action is determinedly family-friendly, live or die by their villains, and director Jon Favreau’s remake of Disney’s The Jungle Book...

Half-Baked Goods: "The Boss," "Demolition," and "Hardcore Henry"

THE BOSS As far as her recent movies are concerned, only one thing separates a good Melissa McCarthy comedy from a bad one, and that thing is Paul Feig. (Those awkwardly unfunny previews for Feig’s...

Drones: "Eye in the Sky" and "Hello, My Name Is Doris"

EYE IN THE SKY Eye in the Sky concerns an impending act of drone warfare on a seemingly peaceful village in Kenya, and it’s one of the few films of its type released since 1964’s Fail-Safe: a pulse-pounding,...

Clones: "I Saw the Light," "Meet the Blacks," and "God’s Not Dead 2"

Grim and Grimmer: "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2"

Chicago Hopeless: "Allegiant"

The Tree of Life: "Miracles from Heaven," "The Perfect Match," and "The Bronze"

A Goodman Is Hard to Find: "10 Cloverfield Lane," "The Young Messiah," and "The Brothers Grimsby"

Alpha Oscar Kilo: "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot," "Zootopia," and "London Has Fallen"

Between a Rock and a Hard Race: Notes on the 2016 Academy Awards Telecast

Stupider Ascending: "Gods of Egypt," "Triple 9," and "Eddie the Eagle"

The Billy Goat’s Gruff: "The Witch," "Risen," "Race," and "The Lady in the Van"

#OscarsSoWhat?: How Voters, Bloggers, and Maybe Dumb Luck Upended the 2016 Academy Awards – and the Academy Itself

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Music

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Letting the Chips Fall: David G. Smith, “First Love”; April 30 at the Redstone Room

Letting the Chips Fall: David G. Smith, “First Love”; April 30 at the Redstone Room

When Blue Grass, Iowa’s David G. Smith recorded his last studio album, he actually cut enough material for two records. Given the consistently topical/political nature of 2014’s One House, a listener...

“Just Me Behind the Wheel”: Matthew Logan Vasquez, April 18 at Daytrotter

Delta Spirit frontman Matthew Logan Vasquez characterizes his song “Everything I Do Is Out” as “sweaty,” and the description is apt, with its howling, hoarse, Cobain-like vocals, meaty hard-rock...

The Best Kind of Schizophrenic: Sean Watkins, April 14 at the Redstone Room

Listening to Sean Watkins’ fifth solo album, What to Fear, you might get whiplash trying to follow the wild swings in lyrical tone in just its first half. The title track opens things with an acidic...

Mahler and Brahms and Sebastian the Crab: Classical and Disney Repertoires with the Quad City Symphony, April 2 through 16

For many, the word “symphony” evokes the names of famed composers such as Brahms, Mahler, and Tchaikovsky, each of whose talents will be duly represented in the springtime repertoire for Quad City...

Different Types of Dangerous: Yonatan Gat, April 1 at Rozz-Tox

Yonatan Gat knows dangerous. As the guitarist for Monotonix – banned in many venues in its native Israel – the peril was physical. “Monotonix ... was dangerous because you could always get hurt...

Homegrown Home Run: The Quad City Symphony, March 5 at the Adler Theatre

Lissie Unleashed: “My Wild West”

Navigating a Journey: The Multiple Cat, “Intricate Maps”; February 12 at Rozz-Tox

She's Got the World on Her Strings: Violinist Livia Sohn Performs with the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, February 6 and 7

Taking the Bull by the Horns: Red Rodeo Provides a Haven for Country-Music Fans

A 2015 Album

Unpack Your Superlatives: Quad City Arts Visiting Artist Sara Gazarek, December 12 at the Central Performing Arts Center

Mining Moeller Monday: The Legendary Shack Shakers and the Yawpers

Rock Solid: The Cerny Brothers, “Sleeping Giant”; November 13 at the Redstone Room

Accessibly Adventurous: The Dawn, “At First Light”; October 31 at RIBCO

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Theatre

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Parent Trapped: "Baby with the Bathwater," at Scott Community College through April 29

Parent Trapped: "Baby with the Bathwater," at Scott Community College through April 29

Christopher Durang’s irreverent Baby with the Bathwater is the current production at Scott Community College, and upon my arrival about 25 minutes prior to showtime, I enjoyed a few moments of the sweet...

Say "Uncle"! : Tony Nominee Lee Blessing Debuts His New Comedy at New Ground Theatre, April 29 through May 8

Say "Uncle"! : Tony Nominee Lee Blessing Debuts His New Comedy at New Ground Theatre, April 29 through May 8

At the very end of Anton Chekhov’s 1897 tragicomedy Uncle Vanya, two of the play’s principal characters – Vanya and his niece Sonya – sit quietly at a table at their Russian estate, each lamenting...

Tales of a First-Grade Something: "Junie B. Jones: The Musical," at the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse through May 21

On the program cover for the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse’s new family musical, right under the names of show creators Marcy Heisler and Zina Goldrich, you’ll find this brief synopsis: “A delightful...

Non-secularious: "The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged)," at the QC Theatre Workshop through May 1

In the beginning, Brent Tubbs directed a play. And the production was without form and void; darkness was upon the face of the show. And the spirit of Brent moved upon the three-person cast. And Brent...

Bumble, Fumble, Toil, and Tumble: "Noises Off," at St. Ambrose University through April 17

Michael Frayn’s 1982 comedy Noises Off, which will be performed by the St. Ambrose theatre department this weekend, is a fast-paced, riotously wacky farce full of witty lines and tremendous physical...

Local Theatre Auditions/Calls for Entry

Tastes Like Teen Spirit: "Amy's Wish," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through April 17

Long Night's Journey into Day: "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" at the District Theatre through April 16

Live from New York, It's Sober-Day Night! : "My Favorite Year," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through April 3

Die Job: "Shear Madness," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through April 30

Here's to the Ladies Who Launch: "Mama Won't Fly," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through March 20

Food for Thought: "The Big Meal" at the QC Theatre Workshop through March 20

The Executioners' Songs: "Thrill Me: The Leopold & Loeb Story," at the Circa '21 Speakeasy through February 27

May the Farce Be with You: "Moon Over Buffalo," at the District Theatre through February 27

This Land Is My Land, This Land Is Your Land: Iowa Poet Laureate Mary Swander Presents "Map of My Kingdom," February 24 at the Bettendorf Public Library

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Art

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Featured Image from the Quad Cities Photography Club

(The River Cities’ Reader each month will feature an image or images from the Quad Cities Photography Club. Click on the photo for a larger version.) The bald eagles that frequent our area along...

Art in Plain Sight: Schwiebert Riverfront Park and the Davenport Skatepark

Art in Plain Sight: Schwiebert Riverfront Park and the Davenport Skatepark

Playgrounds can be innovative, bold environments with intriguing sculptural forms: their colors bright and exciting; their designs active – imprinted with the rhythms of jumping, climbing, running,...

"Submarine" Commander: "Yellow Submarine" Animator Ron Campbell, July 17 and 18 at Bucktown Center for the Arts

“When I was a child in Australia,” says 75-year-old Ron Campbell, “the way you saw cartoons was you went to the movies on Saturday afternoons, which was the way the movie industry catered to the...

Art in Plain Sight: The Giant Wheel

The Giant Wheel rises to a height of 110 feet above Modern Woodmen Park’s baseball field in Davenport. This exciting addition to the Quad Cities’ riverfront is part viewing platform, part light...

Winners from the Reader’s 2015 Photo Contest

Many thanks to those who submitted entries to our 2015 photography contest, with the categories “On the Waterfront,” “School’s Out,” “Summer in the City,” and “Hot Stuff!” Our favorites...

Enter the Reader’s 2015 Photo Contest! June 1 Deadline!

Art in Plain Sight: Black Hawk Mural

Remembering Bruce Carter

College Collage: Student Artists of the "2014 College Invitational," Opening November 8 at the Figge

Art in Plain Sight: Halloween Decorations

Concentration and Synergy: Despite a Pending Sale, Bucktown Is Poised to Thrive

Different Paths to Similar Ends: Megan and Kristin Quinn Honored with Riverssance’s Harley Award

Art in Plain Sight: The Arsenal and Wells Fargo Clocks

Hearts of Glass: Artisans and Students Make Hot Glass in a New Davenport Studio

Short on Legends, Loaded with Innovation: “Innovators & Legends,” through September 7 at the Figge