As the dust settles from our most recent battle against the hazardous and unnecessary CO2 pipelines, I find myself weary, but nevertheless the war against the pipeline continues.

Wolf Carbon Solutions Website Screenshot

Intervening in the Illinois Commerce Commission's protocol, via trial by jury, is the best way to stop the carbon dioxide pipeline project.

The Timber Lake Playhouse’s latest jukebox musical, What a Wonderful World, is the magical tale of how Santa and Mrs. Claus try to retire – but in doing so, they must pass the baton to the new Santa, otherwise the North pole, and the fate of Christmas, are in danger of disappearing forever.

Ready or not, here come the holidays! I had the privilege to attend the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse’s Wednesday-night preview of their latest musical Winter Wonderland. Upon entering the theatre, I was greeted with a lovely arrangement of lighted Christmas wreaths and a cozy set design consisting of a fabulous cabin decked out in all kinds of sparkling ornaments and tinsel, compliments of scenic designer Susan Holgersson and scenic artist Trinity Filut. The surroundings absolutely got me in the holiday spirit.

I was delighted to catch Friday’s opening-night performance of the new musical comedy Disenchanted! at the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse. Directed by Corinne Johnson, with musical direction by Ron May, this show is about the other sides – more disgruntled sides – of the lives of fairytale characters made famous through the wonderful world of Walt Disney, with Snow White and her gang of dissatisfied co-princesses venting their frustrations as storybook/movie characters.

There were people dancing in the aisles at the Timber Lake Playhouse on Friday night, with patrons enjoying the theatre's current and vibrant musical production Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story. Audience members absolutely went wild for author Alan Janes' show – they were on their feet, clapping, cheering, and singing along to such classic tunes as “Peggy Sue,” “Maybe Baby,” and “Oh Boy.” The atmosphere was positively charged, and I found myself singing along, too. It was so good to see people cutting loose and having a fantastic time.

On Wednesday night, I attended a preview of the Black Box Theatre’s latest presentation The Guys, written by Anne Nelson. Based on a true story, the play follows an editor named Joan (Jennifer Cook Gregory), who receives an unexpected phone call from Nick (Jim Harris), a fire captain who has lost most of his men in the 9/11 attacks. Directed and designed by Lora Adams, The Guys is a poignant and conversational piece that brought forth, to me, many horrific and sad images from that devastating day.

The joint was really jumping at the Timber Lake Playhouse on Friday as the company presented its rendition of Ain’t Misbehavin', an energetic tribute to the songs of Thomas “Fats” Waller.

Does everything that happens to us happen by chance? Or could our reactions to life’s events change their outcomes in small or large ways? (I've heard it said before that what might break one person may actually strengthen another, and although we cannot control outside events or circumstances, we can choose how we react.) These thought-provoking questions came to mind as I finished watching Sunday’s matinée performance of playwright Nick Payne’s Constellations, now playing at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre.

It was a lovely summer evening at the Timber Lake Playhouse on Friday night, with glowing stringed lights hanging throughout the campground that added a tranquil feeling outside. Inside the theatre, it was equally pleasant, with the welcoming, rustic set design by Sherri Howells providing a fabulous, bluegrass-and-country playing area for the venue's latest musical presentation The Robber Bridegroom.