• The David R. Collins Writers Conference, June 28 through 30

    Authors of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and more will share their talents and help strenghten the talents of others during the Midwest Writing Center's annual David R. Collins Writers Conference, the June 28 through 30 celebration of the written word boasting workshops, readings, book pitches, short films, and more.

  • QCA Today Headlines Quad Cities - Sunset Marina Rock Island, Illinois
    QCA Today: June 24, 2018

    This feature collects articles published online by Quad Cities-area media outlets and by CapitolFax.com and the state-politics sections of the Des Moines Register and the State Journal-Register.

  • River Action's “Explore the River Series,” May 29 through September 1

    Wildlife, history, geology, and more will be explored when River Action hosts presentations in this year's Channel Cat Talks and Riverine Walks – “Explore the River Series” celebrations of the Quad Cities' unique culture and landscape taking place four times weekly from May 29 through September 1.

  • “Very Eric Carle: A Very Hungry, Quiet, Lonely, Clumsy, Busy Exhibit,” May 26 through September 9

    One of the most popular and successful children's-book authors of all time – along with many of his beloved animal, bird, and insect friends – will be celebrated in a new Family Museum exhibition opening May 26, as the Bettendorf venue hosts the touring family delight Very Eric Carle: A Very Hungry, Quiet, Lonely, Clumsy, Busy Exhibit.

  • Planet Funk Con: Comic Con 2018, June 22 and 23

    Comic books, video and board games, tournaments, cosplay competitions, and loads of special guests will be on hand when Moline's TaxSlayer Center hosts the June 22 and 23 convention Planet Funk Con: Comic Con 2018, a weekend event housing entertainment and shopping opportunities for connoisseurs and collectors of all ages.

  • Rauner or Madigan: Who's Less Popular?

    Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan will be on the ballot in just one of Illinois’ 118 House districts this November, but his name and reputation will be featured in electoral battles throughout the state as Governor Bruce Rauner and the Republican Party use Madigan against every Democrat from JB Pritzker on down to maybe even mosquito-abatement district races. Can his lousy statewide image be used to defeat his fellow Democrats?

  • Poll Numbers Show Deep Dissatisfaction with Gubernatorial Candidates

    According to a recent Capitol Fax/We Ask America poll, Democrat JB Pritzker leads Republican Governor Bruce Rauner by nine points, 36-27, with 26 percent choosing an unnamed third-party candidate and 11 percent undecided. In other words, slightly more people said they preferred third party and/or were undecided than supported the frontrunner Pritzker.

  • It Isn't for Lack of U.S. Immigration Laws

    Immigration in the U.S. has become one of the most emotionally charged issues of our time, due to precious little factual data informing it, regardless of whether you are sympathetic to illegal immigration or opposed to it.

  • Mapes Out Despite the Trains Running on Time

    If you ask anyone at the Statehouse about House Speaker Michael Madigan’s former chief of staff Tim Mapes, they'll all say he "made the trains run on time.”

  • Separating the Possible from the Improbable in Loncar's Claims

    Pointing out the holes in Maryann Loncar’s allegations against Representative Lou Lang (D-Skokie) is like shooting fish in a barrel. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that absolutely everything she said was untrue.

  • The Mississippi Bend Players' “Big River,” June 22 through July 1

    Opening the company's second season with a Broadway hit that won seven Tony Awards and nine Drama Desk Awards, the Mississippi Bend Players bring life on the Mississippi to stage-musical life in the June 22 through July 1 presentation Big River, a Mark Twain adaptation praised by the Hollywood Reporter for its “tuneful score” and “episodic storyline that flows as smoothly as the Mississippi River.”

  • New Ground Theatre's “Love, Loss, & What I Wore,” June 22 through 24

    The late, great author and humorist Nora Ephron famously shared this piece of advice for women: “Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” That message will also be shared in New Ground Theatre's June 22 through 24 presentation of Nora and Delia Ephron's Love, Loss, & What I Wore, a stage serio-comedy that Variety magazine called “a bittersweet meditation on the joys and tribulations of women's lives” and that the Hollywood Reporter deemed “tender and insightful without being sentimental.”

  • “Hedwig & the Angry Inch,” June 23 through 30

    Lauded by Rolling Stone as “the first musical to truly rock” and the winner of four Tony Awards, the theatrical sensation Hedwig & the Angry Inch will be staged in a special three-performance run at the Circa '21 Speakeasy June 23 through 30, its electrifying glam-rock atmosphere inspiring Entertainment Weekly to call the show “groundbreaking and undoubtedly ahead of its time.”

  • Forest Afire: Genesius Guild's “As You Like It,” at Lincoln Park through June 24

    At Friday night's final dress rehearsal of Genesius Guild's As You Like It, there were instances in which performers were forced to overcome numerous distractions from around the park. The distant sounds of children on the playground, a flock of birds singing their twilight song, an occasional motorcycle passing by … even the noise of a rushing freight train from the bottom of the hill.

    One could make the case that these distractions would lessen the overall enjoyability of this Shakespeare production. But I found the opposite to be the case, for they reminded me that this is public theatre at its finest – an opportunity for all to come and enjoy classical theatre no matter the emptiness of their pockets (though donations are gratefully accepted), and even if performed in the sweltering mid-June heat, by actors with true love for and dedication to the art.

  • What to Expect While They're Expecting: “Baby,” at the Black Box Theatre through June 23

    Every summer, the Quad Cities is blessed with an extensive live-theatre scene, and the months are crowded with show after show. Many of them are epic or extravagant productions such as Mame, The Marriage of Figaro, Beauty & the Beast, The Bridges of Madison Country, The Book of Mormon, Jesus Christ Superstar and those are just examples from the first half of June.

    But then there are the smaller, more intimate ones. Presentations of works that you’ve maybe never heard of. Things that sound interesting but are overshadowed by bigger, more well-known titles. Shows such as the Black Box Theatre’s musical offering Baby – which may well prove to be the sweetest, most heartfelt, and most authentic musical you’ll see all season long.

  • Joseph, June 27

    Praised by Whatsup Magazine for music that delivers “the lyrics as spells, the melodies as enchantment, the rhythms as the primal beatings of the heart,” the folk artists of Joseph play a Moeller Nights concert at Maquoketa's Codfish Hollow Barn on June 27, sharing what the magazine lauded as “a harmonic alchemical transmutation of word and music into shimmering epiphanies of transcendent meaning.”

  • The Heligoats, June 27

    Performing a Moeller Nights concert on June 27, the Heligoats – what NPR called “a strange name for a guy strumming a guitar, but oddly befitting someone who stuffs his songs with so many sideways ideas and observations” – delivers acoustic indie rock courtesy of singer/songwriter Chris Otepka, whom NPR declared “writes songs that are brainy in the best way: clever without straining for cuteness, wry but never smug.”

  • Magic City Hippies, June 28

    Presenting what 24OurMusic.net called “artistic synergy done right, combining all the best elements of rock, funk, and hip-hop into something that is cool and enchanting,” the Miami-based musicians of Magic City Hippies will bring their luaded genre blend to Davenport's Redstone Room on June 28 – the latest stop in a June tour that finds the band visiting nine states over 13 days.

  • “That'll Be the Day: A Tribute to Buddy Holly & the Crickets,” June 28 and 29

    The familiar sounds of “Peggy Sue,” “Maybe Baby,” “Oh Boy,” “Everyday,” and many other iconic '50s-rock hits will fill the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse on June 28 and 29, with the Rock Island venue presenting two performances of the exhilarating touring production That'll Be the Day: A Tribute to Buddy Holly & the Crickets with headliner Todd Meredith, the star of Circa '21's 2008 musical Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story.

  • Sugarland, June 29

    Winners of two Grammy Awards, five Academy of Country Music Awards, and six Country Music Association Awards, the chart-topping Sugarland duo plays a June 29 TaxSlayer Center concert on the musicians' “Still the Same Tour,” treating fans to beloved hits – including “Baby Girl,” “All I Want to Do,” and “It Happens” – from more than a decade of recording and sold-out amphitheater events.

  • Clone Rangers: "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom"

    Despite the movie topping the summer-of-2015 box-office charts and grossing some 1.67 billion worldwide, it appears that many of Jurassic World's salient details completely left my brain the moment I completed my review. I realized this after returning to said article in preparation for my Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom critique, and discovering that many of elements I was planning to diss this time around were elements I already knocked three years ago: the slavishness to Spielberg, the presentational sameness, the lack of genuine scares, the tired cliché of the first character killed off being a person of color. In fairness, the new film kills off a black guy and a white guy simultaneously, which I guess is this series' idea of progress, but still … . What was left to bitch about?

    Quite a bit, actually. But in a not-unhappy surprise, very little of it matters, because while Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom may be stupider than its predecessor, it's also a lot more fun.

  • Jack-Jack Be Nimble, Jack-Jack Be Quick: “Incredibles 2,” “SuperFly,” and “Tag”

    Listening to the sustained, rolling laughter at my screening of Pixar's Incredibles 2, it became clear, even while it was happening, which individual scene was likely going to be the best-remembered and most-adored of the bunch: the one with the raccoon.

  • “East Meets West: The First Railroad Bridge to Cross the Mississippi,” June 28

    One of the most significant events in the history of American travel will, on June 28, be explored at the Putnam Museum & Science Center when the venue hosts a special free screening of the documentary East Meets West: The First Railroad Bridge to Cross the Mississippi the first public showing of the film since its River Action-hosted area premiere last August at the Figge Art Museum.

  • Purloined Necklace: “Ocean's 8,” “Hereditary,” and “Hotel Artemis”

    There's a kind of directorial smoothness, an almost tangible delight in the composition and pacing of the on-screen images, that keeps audiences alert and energized. Though the films themselves were of varying quality, Steven Soderbergh demonstrated this easy, breezy style in Ocean's Eleven, Twelve, and Thirteen – heist comedies that gleamed with their directors' signature polish. But there's also a kind of smoothness, a professional yet rather paint-by-numbers approach, that can lead to your mind wandering even while you're enjoying yourself.

  • Johnny Knoxville Owns a Theme Park, and Other Freak Accidents: "Action Point," "Upgrade," "Adrift," and "The Rider"

    As the movie's star has recounted, among the many injuries Johnny Knoxville suffered while filming his new comedy Action Point were concussions, broken bones, and the loss of “two-and-a-half teeth.” Did they happen to be his fangs? I ask because director Tim Kirkby's stunt-filled slapstick, despite its expected R rating, is about as close to a family-friendly Jackass as Knoxville has attempted, and I don't mean that admiringly; even before its famously fearless, possibly deranged lead walked on set, this thing was destined to be toothless.

Art

  • “John Preston: Day by Day,” June 23 through July 26

    Paintings and watercolors of richly beautiful nature images – and images found very close to home – will be on local display June 23 through July 26, as the Beréskin Gallery & Art Academy houses the recent works of a Fairfield, Iowa, artist in John Preston: Day by Day.

  • “Relics” by Dean Kugler and “Momentarily Present” by Erik Ohrn, June 29 through August 17

    Scultpures and paintings by Iowa- and Illinois-based talents will fill the Quad City Arts Center from June 29 through August 17, as the Rock Island venue houses Dean Kugler's Relics and Erik Ohrn's Momentarily Present – exhibitions boasting works by two gifted artists who use figuration to communicate ideas about psychology, internal states of being, and the solitary nature of existence.

  • “An Intimate Encounter with Nature,” April 28 through June 21

    From April 28 through June 21, the wonders of the great outdoors, and the creatures who make their homes there, will be celebrated in the latest exhibition at Bettendorf's Beréskin Gallery & Art Academy: An Intimate Encounter with Nature, featuring evocative paintings by Mary Kline Misol and expressive photographs by Larry Mendenhall.

  • “Karmageddon” and “News Anchors with Nabisco,” May 11 through June 22

    Artworks boasting the strange, the familiar, and the strangely familiar will be on display at Rock Island's Quad City Arts Center May 11 through June 22, with illustrative imagery and bright colors employed to communicate ideas about objects, environments, and concepts in the charming, humorous exhibits Karmageddon, featuring mixed media by David Balluff, and News Anchors with Nabisco, showcasing paintings by Greg Dickinson.

  • “Steve Sinner: Master Woodturner,” February 17 through June 24

    Highlighting nearly 30 examples of solo pieces, collaborations, and innovations within the art form, the Figge Art Museum's new exhibition Steve Sinner: Master Woodturner will, from February 17 through June 24, showcase the talents of the Omaha native and Bettendorf resident whose beautiful, hand-crafted works can be found in galleries and collections from California to Ohio to New York.