Things to do this weekend

When it comes to weekend activities, Champaign-Urbana has no shortage. From concerts to art exhibits and sporting events, it may seem as if the biggest challenge Illini students face is deciding which events to cram into a single weekend. Read on to find out what’s happening this weekend both on campus and around the 217.

Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013

A Night at the Canopy Club

To kick off the weekend early, students in the C-U area can catch a live show at the Canopy Club. Mathien & Tristan Lake & the Chromatic Black as well as When We Were Sound will be performing. According to Michael Armintrout, director of marketing and operations for Jay Goldberg Events and Entertainment, Mathien & Tristan Lake & the Chromatic Black have played at the Canopy Club previously and received a great response from attendees.

“We felt it would be a great pairing of music for the night,” he said. “People should go see these bands because, without support, bands on the rise can’t continue to climb.”

Doors open at 9:30 p.m., and the show will officially start at 10 p.m. Admittance is $7, and attendees must be at least 18 years old.

Thursday, Sept. 5 — Saturday, Sept. 7

A Weekend at the Ellnora Guitar Festival, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts

Guitar enthusiasts will have plenty of activities to fill their schedule, as the Ellnora Guitar Festival, which kicked off Tuesday, continues through the weekend. Hosted by the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, an “Opening Night Party” is Thursday evening at 6 p.m. on both Stage 5, Stage 6, as well as in the lobby, the outdoor Amphitheatre and Southeast Terrace. It costs $5 to get in, and the evening will include performances from Fiona Boyes, Stephane Wrembel, The Lee Boys, Sam Bush/Del McCoury duo and Jonny Lang.

The festival will continue through Saturday, Sept. 7, and will include a number of free admission shows. More information can be found at

Thursday, Sept. 5 — Saturday, Sept. 7

“SeaScapes and Beyond” Art Exhibition and Fundraiser

Laura Bradley is the artist behind “SeaScapes and Beyond,” Indi Go Artist co-op’s latest exhibit. She said the exhibit, which opened on Aug. 30, is “an exciting opportunity to get (my) work out in the Champaign area.” Originally from Carbondale, Ill., Bradley said her exhibit appeals to both college students and anyone else who enjoys nature or natural scenery, as her pieces primarily feature landscapes and seascapes.

“I hope viewers can walk away having seen some, hopefully, good works of art,” Bradley said. “It would be great if my exhibit could maybe inspire someone else to start creating their own works of art.”

The exhibit will be open from 7 to 9 p.m. at 9 E. University Ave. on Thursday and will end on Saturday, Sept. 7.

Thursday, Sept. 5

Dancing Fair at the Union

For those looking to get involved with the dance community on campus, the Dancing Fair is the perfect weekend activity to kick off the fall semester. The event takes place on Thursday, Sept. 5, at 7 p.m., and all are welcome to attend this free event in the Illini Union Courtyard Cafe.

Megan Laz, the media communications specialist for the Illini Union, said the Dancing Fair will operate like a mini Quad-day and give students the opportunity to talk and connect with the different student dance organization members face-to-face.

“There will be over 20 RSOs at the Dancing Fair, with tables set up so that the crowds can walk around the explore,” Laz said. “Eighteen different RSOs will perform as well, like the Blues, which is described as a swing dance style with blues music. Other genres include salsa and tango.”

Friday, Sept. 6- Saturday, Sept. 7

Head to Downtown Champaign to visit Mike N Molly’s

As Seth Fein, founder of Nicodemus Agency, puts it, “Mike N Molly’s is, quite frankly, one of the better bars in all of Illinois.” For those interested in checking out the downtown Champaign hotspot this Friday, there will be live music featuring Shannon Swords, a local emcee, with special guest Cypha MC and Jonah. Isaac Arms of Heirship Records booked Mike N Molly’s entertainment for Friday evening, and he said Swords will perform in the beer garden, weather permitting. The following evening, Woodie will perform with special guests Alec’s Band and The Autocorrect.

Arms said he encourages students to attend events at Mike N Molly’s, as “the ambiance is something you have to experience to believe.”

“The beer garden is almost holy; it’s our little slice of Wrigley,” Arms said. “Inside is also just bursting with local character — and characters.”

Mike N Molly’s is located at 105 N. Market St., Champaign, and doors open at 8 p.m., with performances beginning at 9 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 6 — Saturday, Sept. 7

Cosmic Colors at the William M. Staerkel Planetarium

“Cosmic Colors: An Adventure along the Spectrum,” is a Parkland Planetarium exhibit designed to allow for the examination of colors that people can’t see visibly, like X-rays and Infrared rays. During the show, audience members sit in a 50-foot hemisphere dome and view examples of infrared light, both on the ground and in space.

“IMAX movies are big, but they don’t wrap all around you — that is what we do,” said Planetarium Director David Leake. “Cosmic Colors is a full-dome show.”

In addition to being a unique, visual experience, Leake said “Colors” is also “very informative and light-hearted.” The show has multiple soundtracks and narrators to keep viewers entertained.

Tickets can be purchased at the door and cost $5 for adults and $4 for students, children and senior citizens. Located on the west side of Parkland College in northwest Champaign, “Cosmic Colors” will be shown at 8 p.m. The planetarium is located at 2400 W. Bradley Ave., Champaign.

Friday, Sept. 6

A Brazilian Independence Day Party

Radio Maria will be hosting a Brazilian independence party on Friday, starting at 9 p.m. Those in attendance can enjoy an evening of Brazilian music, dancing and drinks. There will be a DJ playing Brazilian music. Tickets can be purchased at Radio Maria, located at 119 N. Walnut St., Champaign, and cost $5 in advance and $7 at the door. Kevin Abrams, Radio Maria’s front of house manager, recommends getting tickets as soon as possible, as there are only 50 total tickets available.

Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013

Science at the Market

Those with “science on the brain” may find “Science at the Market” to be an entertaining outing. Held on Saturday mornings at Lincoln Square Mall at 201 Lincoln Square, Urbana, from 8 a.m. to noon, students may come and have their science-minded questions answered. The market is located on the Community Groups aisle in the square at Lincoln Square.

Inga Karliner, a retired research physicist, said the event consists of nine independent groups who each set up booths. At each booth, demos or specimen are shown to observers who can then ask questions.

“Last week’s students from the group sponsored by the University of Illinois Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology brought several robots (that) they designed and built,” Karliner said. “Other weeks, students brought nano-materials, 3-D printers or DNA extractors.”

In addition to observing scientific demos, students can also meet with other professors and students, speak with experts and explore science-related careers.

“In fact, many of us are amazed that we get paid for what we love to do,” Karliner said.

Saturday, Sept. 7

“ILL-INI!” Football

Illini fans can attend the home football game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Memorial Stadium Saturday, starting at 11 a.m. After their win against Southern Illinois Aug. 23, the Fighting Illini football team currently holds a record of 1-0.

Donovonn Young, a junior running back for Illinois, said he is expecting a good game and for his team to come out with a win.

“Fall camp went well and I’m anxious to see how the season plays out with a new outlook,” Young said. “(When students attend), it helps with school spirit. It gets us going and ultimately we play just a little bit harder.”

Sunday, Sept. 8

Enjoy a live performance at the Champaign Public Library

All are welcome to attend a concert at the Champaign Public Library, located at 200 W. Green St., Champaign, on Sunday afternoon, starting at 2 p.m. Linda Larson, the CPL’s adult services librarian, said that the library’s concerts typically last one hour and admission is free.

“This particular concert features Indian classical music, played on the guitar and tabla,” Larson said. “Both of the musicians have impressive music resumes and have performed jazz and other styles of music.”

Larson oversees the “In Concert @CPL” series, which features live music at the Champaign Public Library once a month. She said she hopes people will come with an open mind and eager to experience something new.

“It’s the library’s first time featuring Indian music,” Larson said. “It will give students the opportunity to sample a different culture’s traditions.”

Sunday, Sept. 8

Inspired By… Works of the C-U Spinners and Weavers Gild

Located at the Spurlock Museum, 600 S. Gregory St., Inspired By … Works of the C-U Spinners and Weavers Gild celebrates the art of fiber-working in a unique exhibit, representing a three-year collaboration with C-U Spinners and the Weavers Guild. It combines museum artifacts with original Guild member artwork.

Kim Sheahan, Spurlock Museum’s assistant director of education, said she especially loves this exhibit because it is “engaging on a number of levels and for a wide variety of visitors.”

“It contains artifacts from all over the world,” Sheahan said. “It’s fascinating to see what aspect of each of the cultural artifacts inspired the fiber artist. Some artists made multiple items inspired by the same artifact.”

This exhibit will be on display through March 9, 2014, and contains 38 fiber artworks created by 16 different Guild members.

The Spurlock Museum will be open on Sunday from 12 to 4 p.m. Tours of the exhibit may be reserved by contacting Brook Taylor at 217-265-0474.

Anna can be reached at [email protected]