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What's Happenin': July 23 - 29 PDF Print E-mail
Lifestyle - Noteworthy Events
Written by Mike Schulz and Marguerite Day   
Wednesday, 23 July 2008 02:05


Rock Island Brewing Company

Saturday, July 26


FastBall The Rock Island Brewing Company has decided to throw its patrons a FastBall. And thankfully, for the safety of all concerned, they've decided to throw it outside.

Performing with musical guests Bottle of Justus and Pete & J, the Austin, Texas-based rock outfit FastBall will headline an outdoor RIBCO concert on July 26, with band members Tony Scalzo, Joey Shuffield, and Miles Zuniga playing songs from both their soon-to-be-released CD and from their platinum-selling past.

FastBall's 1996 debut, Make Your Mama Proud, earned it "Best Pop Band" honors at the Austin Music Awards, but it was 1998's All the Pain Money Can Buy that sealed the group's fame. The CD stayed on Billboard's Top 200 Albums chart for an entire year, and earned its musicians two Grammy nominations for the top-five Billboard hit "The Way," described by Rolling Stone as "a moving tale flawlessly and efficiently told."

Their forthcoming CD - Little White Lies - will be the band's fifth, and it's currently touring the Midwest in early support of its release; according to the group's Web site, it'll arrive in the Quad Cities just one day after a performance at Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo. But if FastBall thinks the zoo was fierce, wait'll they see the animals who show up at RIBCO on a Saturday night.

Oh, come on, I'm allowed to joke - over the years I've spent thousands in that joint!

FastBall's concert starts at 8 p.m., and more on the group can be found at ( - Mike Schulz



Mississippi Valley Fair

Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds

Tuesday, July 29, through Sunday, August 3


ROCK-IT the Robot Where can you enjoy fun carnival rides, eat delicious fried food, and see an antique-tractor display, cars from all over the world, five big country performers, and a dancing robot? The Mississippi Valley Fair, that's where!

The annual fair, which takes place July 29 through August 3 at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds, offers free grounds attractions throughout the week, and on July 30 will host a special kids' day, with children 12 and under admitted free until 5 p.m. (By purchasing a $15 wristband, they can enjoy unlimited carnival rides from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.) Some of the fair's attractions include Ken Carter's puppet show, the Globe of Death motorcycle act, a petting zoo, and the National Belgian Horse Show. Plus, ROCK-IT - the nine-foot-tall body puppet seen in the accompanying photo - will be talking, dancing, and putting on his own light show.

Shows of a different kind will be provided through six nights of concerts at the fairgrounds' grandstand. The fair's country acts include Sugarland, Alan Jackson, Jason Aldean, Darryl Worley, and Ronnie Milsap; for a night of rock 'n' roll, Ted Nugent will take the stage to play such classics as "Cat Scratch Fever" and "Stranglehold." And the Diamonds, a four-man '50s rock 'n' roll group, will offer free shows throughout the week.

Admission is $3 for ages four through 12 and $8 for adults at the gate, and for more information on the Mississippi Valley Fair, check out its Web site at ( - Marguerite Day



Are We There Yet?

Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse

Wednesday, July 23, through Saturday, September 13


Tom Walljasper, Sandra D. Rivera, and Tristan Tapscott in Are We There Yet?I was employed at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse for 11 years, and it's no secret that I love the place, but man - talk about greedy!

The Rock Island venue's new offering is the local debut of the musical comedy Are We There Yet?, which explores the American family through 20-odd vignettes, and let's consider the audience it's aiming for:

• Older parents, with songs about a babysitting grandmother and a widower rediscovering romance.

• Middle-aged parents, with songs about a child's prom and a father walking his daughter down the aisle.

• Young parents, with songs about a surprised mother-to-be and the dreaded pre-pre-school screenings.

• And anyone who can relate to the song titled "Your Parents Push Your Buttons," which I'm guessing includes all the rest of us.

Plus, after four area plays opened two weekends ago, five opened last weekend, and four open next weekend, guess how many plays open opposite Are We There Yet? Zero.

Like I said: Totally greedy. But at least Circa is generous enough to produce a musical comedy featuring more than two dozen characters for performers to sink their teeth into, and it says here that the roles will be played by Erin Dickerson, Sandra D. Rivera, Tristan Tapscott, Tom Walljasper ... .

Wait a minute.

That's it.

Only four actors?!?

The greed is spreading, people!

For more on Are We There Yet?, visit Circa '21's Web site at ( - Mike Schulz



Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Jazz Festival

Downtown Davenport

Thursday, July 24, through Sunday, July 27


The New Wolverine Jazz Orchestra "Shawn?"

"Hey, Mike."

"I'm in a bit of a pickle with my piece on this year's Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Jazz Festival."

"Well, I'm kinda slammed right now, but I think there's a Web site at ( ... ."

"Nah. I know it's the festival's 37th anniversary, and it's taking place July 24 through 27, and nearly five dozen concerts are being performed at Davenport's Clarion Hotel, Col Ballroom, Danceland, Capitol Theatre, and Modern Woodmen Park."

"Okay ... ."

"And I know there'll be seminars on Bix's local upbringing and musical style, and a jazz clinic at the Clarion, and two brunches at the Radisson ... ."

"Mmm-hmm ... ."

"But my problem is this: Which of the 10 bands gets the accompanying photo? A local group, like Illinois' West End Jazz Band or the Quad Cities' Bix Beiderbecke Youth Jazz Band, or a group from out of town? I mean, there's Wally's Warehouse Waifs, from Michigan. Jean Kittrell & the St. Louis Rivermen, from Missouri. Randy Sandke's New York All-Stars and the Statesmen of Jazz, both from New York. Davy Jones & the Bixieland All-Stars, from Florida. The High Sierra Jazz Band, from California. Spats Langham & His Rhythm Boys, from the U.K. And the New Wolverine Jazz Orchestra, from Australia. So which do I choose?"

"Go with the Australians. They traveled the farthest to get here, so it's only polite."

"Wow. That makes perfect sense. Thanks, man - you're way more help than Jeff was. He just said, ‘Go pester someone else with your dumb-ass question.'"

"Wish I'd thought of that ... ."


"Nothing." - Mike Schulz



Corbin Bleu and Mitchel Musso

Modern Woodmen Park

Monday, July 28


Corbin Bleu On July 28, Corbin Bleu (pictured, right) and Mitchel Musso (pictured, left) will perform a double-bill concert at the Modern Woodmen Park, and it's entirely possible that even with the accompanying photos, you don't know who these young men are. Trust me, though, if you were a pre-teen girl, you'd be plotzing right now - the 19-year-old Bleu plays Chad Danforth in the Disney Channel's High School Musical movies, and the 17-year-old Musso plays Oliver Oken in the Disney Channel's Hannah Montana series.

Needless to say, if you have a pre-teen daughter of your own, you'll score major points for securing tickets to their area performance.



Mitchel Musso But why not try to score some points now? Match the following accomplishments with who did the accomplishing, and afterwards, impress your child with your knowledge of Corbin and Mitchel trivia!

Was it Corbin Bleu or Mitchel Musso who ...


1) Released a solo album, Another Side, in 2007?

2) Sang the Oscar-winning "If I Didn't Have You" for the CD Disneymania 6?

3) Sang a remake of "Lean on Me" for the DVD Snow Buddies?

4) Appeared on the series ER?

5) Appeared in the movie Galaxy Quest?

6) Appeared in the movie Secondhand Lions?

7) Appeared in the movie Mystery Men?

8) Voiced the role of "DJ" in the movie Monster House?


For tickets to Bleu's and Musso's Davenport concert, call the Modern Woodmen Park box office at (563) 322-6348. - Mike Schulz



Answers: Corbin Bleu - 1, 4, 5, and 7. Mitchel Musso - 2, 3, 6, and 8. Now have your daughter take this quiz, and watch just how badly she kicks your ass on it.


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