• Greater Quad Cities Renaissance Faire, September 29 and 30

    Fencing battles, sword fights, wandering minstrels, and all manner of Medieval fun will be on hand at the third-annual Quad Cities Renaissance Faire, the September 29 and 30 festival at Davenport's Credit Island Park that sets up camp in Iowa after two successive years in Illinois, and promises multiple stages of live entertainment, unique merchandise in the village marketplace, and food, drinks, and snacks galore.

  • QCA Today Headlines Quad Cities - Sunset Marina Rock Island, Illinois
    QCA Today: September 23, 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.

  • Active Endeavors Health & Fitness Expo and Quad Cities Marathon, September 22 and 23

    An eagerly awaited autumnal tradition will get the blood pumping on September 22 and 23, as the weekend brings with it the Moline TaxSlayer Center's Active Endeavors Health & Fitness Expo on September 22 followed by the annual Quad Cities Marathon, presented by TBK Bank, on September 23, the latter a Boston Marathon qualifier and the only such event in the country to incorporate fave races, four cities, three brides, two states, and one island.

  • John Brassard Jr.: “Murder & Mayhem in Scott County, Iowa”: September 23

    Unexpected, dark, and even horrific sides of Scott County history are currently being explored in a 2018 book by John Brassard Jr., and on September 23, the Eastern Iowa author will visit Davenport's German American Heritage Center in order to share real-life tales from his historical offering Murder & Mayhem in Scott County, Iowa.

  • “Introduction to Sikhism: Contributions and Challenges of the Sikh Community in the United States,” September 18

    For the first public engagement in the organization's 2018-19 lecture series, the World Affairs Council of the Quad Cities (WACQC) will, on September 18, offer Bettendorf Public Library visitors insight and information on a largely misunderstood religion in Introduction to Sikhism: Contributions and Challenges of the Sikh Community in the United States, a 90-minute presentation by the Sikh Coalition's Community Development Director Dr. Rucha Kaur.

  • Plenty of Conflict, but Little Substance, in First Gubernatorial Debate

    The first gubernatorial debate of the 2018 general election was almost all heat and no light. Instead of talking about where they want to take the state, the candidates focused mainly on delivering rehearsed zingers at other people in the race.

  • Rauner Admits Past Mistakes and Makes New Ones

    Governor Bruce Rauner’s campaign-reset speech last week has been described as “contrite,” a “mea culpa,” and even an “apology.”

  • Will “Governor Veto” Turn Into “Governor Override”?

    The JB Pritzker campaign slapped a new label on Governor Bruce Rauner the other day, calling him “Governor Veto” because he’s vetoed several bills that the Democratic candidate supports.

  • Need to Knowtes: Privacy Piracy

    The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a landmark decision (Naperville Smart Meter Awareness v. City of Naperville) on behalf of all Americans by determining that the Fourth Amendment protects smart-meter data collected by energy companies from being searched or seized by government without probable cause and/or appropriate warrants.

  • Local Improvisation with Rauner and the Republicans

    I’ve told you about the non-binding referendums to be held in dozens of Downstate counties designed to entice pro-gun voters to the polls. But that’s not the end of the story.

  • Because They're Goin' to the Chapel and She's Gonna Get Married: "Mama Won't Fly," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through November 3

    There was a certain air of rowdiness at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse's opening-night production of Mama Won't Fly, and rightfully so, as the champagne fountain was flowing in celebration of the theatre's final production of its 41st season. Everyone seemed ready for a good laugh, and on those terms, I don't think any of us left disappointed.

  • “Speech & Debate,” September 27 through 29

    A widely acclaimed work in which, according to Variety magazine, “conflicts explode in consistently intriguing ways,” the comedic drama Speech & Debate serves as the final production in the Playcrafters Barn Theatre's 2018 Barn Owl Series, its September 27 through 29 run demonstrating why the Washington Post deemed it a “suspenseful tale that fuses keen-eyed civic critique with riotous and even campy humor.”

  • “Elegies for Angels, Punks, & Raging Queens,” September 27 through 30

    Deemed “a beautiful memorial” by Nebraska's The Reader and “an incredible achievement” by Vada magazine, the lauded collection of monologues and show tunes Elegies for Angels, Punks, & Raging Queens enjoys a one-weekend Augustana College staging September 27 through 30 – a deeply moving work that TheatrePizzazz.com called “an unforgettable evening of material real and raw, touching and joyous, and ultimately, celebratory.”

  • “Mama Won't Fly,” September 19 through November 3

    Having enjoyed a sold-out sensation with its production of the ABBA musical Mamma Mia!, the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse wraps up its 2017-18 season, from September 19 through November 3, with another stage hit boasting a mother in the title: Mama Won't Fly, a delightful road-trip comedy by the playwriting team of Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope, and Jamie Wooten that Broadway World decreed “moves quickly and never lets up on the laughs.”

  • Better Living Through Chemistry: “Tuesdays with Morrie,” at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through September 23

    Friday’s opening night of Tuesdays with Morrie found the Playcrafters Barn Theatre housing the largest audience I’ve ever seen there. It was almost unbelievable, then, that the intimacy of this two-man show directed by Jeff Ashcraft made me feel like the only person in the room – and I feel fortunate to have been a part of this production's history.

  • The Necessary Raps: Christylez Bacon and Nistha Raj Cross Cultural Streams

    I met and spoke with Raj and Bacon on Thursday, 20 September, at Rozz-Tox (2108 3rdAve, Rock Island). After playing a number of schools in the QC during their too-brief stay here, they will return to DC on Saturday. I’m already looking forward to seeing them again…

  • John Popper, September 24

    Lauded by BluesRockReview.com for his “harmonica gymnastics with vocal theatrics” and the frontman for the Grammy-winning outfit Blues Traveler for more than 30 years, John Popper plays a special September 24 concert at Davenport's Redstone Room, sharing the musical gifts that led Alternative Revolution to deem the 51-year-old “an elder statesman of the jam scene … and he certainly earned the title at a young age.”

  • Sam Morrow, September 26

    Touring in support of his most recent release Concrete & Mud, an album that, according to American Songwriter, “features a greasy guitar groove and some of [the artist's] most soulful vocals to date,” Sam Morrow headlines a special Moeller Nights concert on September 25, the Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter cited by Rolling Stone among 2018's “10 New Country Artists You Need to Know.”

  • Robert Randolph & the Family Band, September 28

    Lauded by NPR for their “irresistible rock 'n' roll swagger,” and with its frontman landing on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time, the Grammy-nominated Robert Randolph & the Family Band play a September 28 concert at Davenport's Redstone Room, the group's most recent release Got Soul inspiring Blues Rock Review to deemed them “a jam band full of energy and power.”

  • Garp 2018, September 28 and 29

    In the venue's latest annual celebration of alternative rock, roots, and country music, Maquoketa's Codfish Hollow Barn hosts no less than 20 performers and ensembles at Garp 2018 on September 28 and 29, both days featuring sets with lauded folk-rock and Americana musician Nathaniel Rateliff, who will perform as both a solo artist and frontman for his group Nathaniel Ratelieff & the Night Sweats.

  • Trump Card: “Fahrenheit 11/9” and “Life Itself”

    “Was it all just a dream?” Those were the first words uttered by an off-screen Michael Moore in his 2004 documentary Fahrenheit 9/11, Moore's incensed indictment of George W. Bush's first years in office (and, because it's Moore, a bunch of other things, too). Those same words, not at all coincidentally, open Moore's new Fahrenheit 11/9, the numerically swapped title a reference to the day in 2016 that Donald T. Trump was officially named our nation's president. The difference between those identically worded openers, though, lies in the timbre of Moore's voice. In 9/11, he was recognizably sardonic and faux ingenuous, following the question with snarky references to Ben Affleck and Robert De Niro. In 11/9, however, “Was it all just a dream?” sounds like the lament of a truly sad, incredulous man – one who can't believe that, 14 years later, he's forced to ask the same damned question again, and likely to ever-less-receptive ears.

  • Ask Not for Whom the Clock Ticks ... : "The House with a Clock in Its Walls" and "Assassination Nation"

    Given that his directorial credits have included a couple of Hostels, the gory Cabin Fever, and the unapologetically repellant cannibal shocker The Green Inferno, hiring Eli Roth to helm a kiddie scare comedy seemed, at first, to be a phenomenally terrible idea, like putting Lars von Trier in charge of church camp or asking Tarantino to babysit. Amazingly, however, Roth proves himself the right director for the job of The House with a Clock in Its Walls, a movie no funnier or scarier than, say, 2015's Jack Black vehicle Goosebumps, but one with plenty of charm, sweetness, and child-friendly gross-outs. Roth being Roth, know that you will witness projectile vomiting. But the puke is wholly composed of pumpkin guts, and the face it lands on is Black's, so you know … . No harm, no foul.

  • “Milford Graves Full Mantis,” September 27

    Described by Artform as “an elegant and patient portrait,” and with Downbeat magazine calling it “as much a visual poem as it is a doumentary,” 2018's Milford Graves Full Mantis will be showcased as the September 27 feature in the Cinema at the Figge series, with hosts Ford Photography and the Figge Art Museum presenting the area debut of this heartfelt ode to a legendary musician.

  • Shane! Come Back! : “The Predator” and “The Wife”

    Even though Hollywood's summer tends to begin in the last days of April and end a couple weekends before Labor Day, it is, you know, still technically summer. Consequently, I feel completely within my rights to decree The Predator perhaps the happiest summer-movie surprise of 2018 – a thrillingly funny, nasty, unpretentious good time that's leagues more entertaining than any deeply unnecessary sequel/reboot of its type should ever be.

  • Sherlock Homemaker: “A Simple Favor,” “Unbroken: Path to Redemption,” and “White Boy Rick”

    Few likely remember it, but back in 1985, Susan Sarandon starred in a movie titled Compromising Positions, an utterly charming mystery-comedy in which a suburban homemaker becomes an amateur sleuth investigating the murder of her dentist. Director Frank Perry's film is a sharp, funny trifle with an astounding supporting cast of Broadway talents – Raul Julia, Judith Ivey, Joe Mantegna, Joan Allen, Edward Herrmann, Mary Beth Hurt – and totally worth a watch on YouTube. (It's easier to sit through if you can ignore the film's rather blatant mid-'80s misogyny.) But I hadn't thought about that movie in years, if not decades – not until director Paul Feig's irresistible mystery-comedy A Simple Favor kept bringing it to mind.

Art

  • “William L. Hawkins: An Imaginative Geography,” September 22 through December 30

    From September 22 through December 30, one of the 20th Century's most accomplished artists will enjoy a career retrospective as the Figge Art Museum houses the touring William L. Hawkins: An Imaginative Geography, the first major exhibition in more than a decade to showcase Hawkins' varied work and important examples from his favorite artistic subjects.

  • “Earth Wind & Fire,” September 1 through 28

    A quintet of superb artists, working in a variety of mediums, will collectively showcase their works in the group exhibition Earth Wind & Fire, on display from September 1 through 28 at the Beréskin Gallery & Art Academy, and boasting new pieces of Dean Kugler, Bill Wolford, Bonnie Grebner, Heidi Grandt, and Karen Brinson.

  • “The Crazy Heads Story” Art Show & Sale, September 7 through 30

    Delightful, fanciful, whimsical, and ingratiatingly goofy works of art will be showcased at Rozz-Tox from September 7 through 30, as the Rock Island venue and the Art Legacy League host the combined art show and sale The Crazy Heads Story, a collection of colorfully original pieces by artists trained by the late Father Ed Catich – Amy Nielsen and Paul Herrera – as well as the St. Ambrose University Art Department founder himself.

  • “Breathe” and “The Grayed Air,” August 24 through October 12

    Encaustic pieces and mixed-media works by artists from both sides of the Mississippi River will be on display August 24 through October 12, as Rock Island's Quad City Arts Center presents Breathe, a collection of works by Carol Hamilton of Harvard, Illinois, and The Grayed Air, a creative assemblage by the Davenport-based Matt Pulford.

  • “Five Alumni: Continuing to Create,” August 24 through October 27

    For the first exhibition in the college's 2018-19 academic year, the Augustana Teaching Museum of Art will showcase works by artists who honed their skills at Augustana itself, with Five Alumni: Continuing to Create, from August 24 through October 27, presenting beautiful, fascinating, and resonant works by a quintet of the school's most gifted graduates.