Rock The Casbah
Back in January, The Casbah celebrated its 25th anniversary with a month of outstanding shows that brought local favorites like Creedle, No Knife and Rocket From the Crypt to the club’s Naugahyde-lined stage for one corker of a rock ’n’ roll celebration. Now that the venue’s anniversary year is coming to an end, it’s throwing a killer wrap party to send off 25 in style. On 25th Anniversary Wrap Party is being held at SILO at Maker’s Quarter (753 15th St., East Village), featuring live performances from The Burning of Rome (shown here), Barbarian and Low Volts. The outdoor rock show will also include food trucks and alcoholic beverages, so it’s for ages 21 and up. Tickets are $12 advance, or $15 the day of the show., The Casbah’s
Happening from BLVD Market and BLVD Nights, two popular events created by the El Cajon Business Improvement District to highlight the enclave of shops, services and eateries on the Boulevard, between Utah and 28th streets. Participating businesses include Media Arts Center, Thrift Trader, The Homebrewer and Gym Standard—check out a homebrew competition, an art show and film screenings—while folks from Calexico Creamery, Anthem Vegan, The Heart and Trotter, Tribute Pizza, Pho Realz and others will serve up holiday-inspired eats. The whole thing’s free and open to all ages. , at #30ECB (shorthand for 30th Street and El Cajon Boulevard) is a blend of
With 11 issues under its belt, The Radvocate’s mission is to give writers, poets and artists a place to publish their work. And what better way to further introduce those folks to the masses than with curated live readings held in cool spaces? The Radvocate Magazine Presents: Make it Snow goes from , and features readings by scrappy creatives like Juliet Escoria, Scott McClanahan (pictured), Lucy Tiven and CityBeat’s own Ryan Bradford. Swing by the The Hideout (3519 El Cajon Blvd., North Park) and listen to a few of the future famous belt out prose. With free admission and booze (The Hideout’s got a pretty decent craft-cocktail menu), it’s a no-lose evening.
Local art collector Sharon Gorevitz started theTalmadge Art Show in 1992 as a way to help artists and artisans find a place to show and sell their work. She held the first event in her Talmadge home, but it quickly outgrew the space and is currently held three times a year at NTC in Point Loma. But from , , the Talmadge Art Show will return to its roots with a special pop-up exhibition at Gorevitz’s house (4514 Norma Drive). The intimate, pared-down happening features a handful of art show regulars like Randy Au (one of his clay creations is pictured), Cindy Bolin, Bonnie Bowman and Miriam Chor-Freitas selling jewelry, clothing, pottery, textiles and more.
There's a new Grinch in town. Burke Moses has taken over from Steve Blanchard in The Old Globe's holiday perennial, Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, which is back for the 17th consecutive year. Other than that, this kid-friendly show is the same as always. Kind of like the Del Mar Fair, but good.
So how does Moses, a Broadway veteran (Beauty and the Beast, Guys and Dolls, Kiss Me Kate) stack up against Blanchard, who was so hilarious that even adults like me enjoyed The Grinch? I don't know if this is a word, but Dr. Seuss would probably approve: Moses is definitely "growlier" than Blanchard, and he moves kind of like John Wayne might have if cast in the role of the big green guy. But in the long run, Moses is just fine and only the Blanchard fans like myself will notice any difference.
As always, this is a sugar-sweet show that, different from the classic cartoon-special version, makes the Grinch's transformation from bad to good more about his bond with Cindy-Lou Who than about realizing the Who's don't need presents to celebrate the holiday. There's no point in quibbling about that anymore. Not after 17 years.Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! runs through Dec. 27.
Au revoir, Mixture
After more than a decade of being one of the coolest design shops in San Diego, Mixture is closing its doors and saying farewell. Owners Brumby and Misti Broussard are moving to Louisiana to be closer to family, but before they go, they're throwing a final shindig. From , stop by Mixture (2210 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy) for live music, food and drink plus artwork by the Broussards' favorite artists—including Robert Verhees, Alicia Dunn, Kyle Boatwright and Monty Montgomery—and some shopping: everything in the store is marked 20 to 90 percent off.
Second City's Nut-Cracking Revue, which opened Thursday night at La Jolla Playhouse's Mandell Weiss Forum, isn't exactly a subversive take on the holiday season, but it's probably as close as we're going to see to one on San Diego stages this December. Only Second City would have the inspired wickedness to turn Santa into Satan all because a child misspelled the salutation in his letter to the North Pole.
This two-act combination of sketches, set pieces and improvisation is nowhere near as satisfying as Second City's The Good, the Bad and the I-5, which the troupe presented at the Playhouse last year. That show had the benefit of low-hanging fruit like Bob Filner to skewer. But the Nut-Cracking Revue has its scripted highlights, and because the audiences are different every performance, the improv bits that spring from audience suggestions will change each night.
The trouble with those audience suggestions is that they frequently can be boneheaded, as on opening night, when some yahoo shouted "Wooden legs!" after a Second City member's call for something someone would be addicted to. Wooden legs? Well, the six-member cast made it work best they could. In fact, some of the funniest moments in the revue come when one Second City player makes fun of another's attempt at spontaneous comedy. That they can laugh at themselves makes it easier to laugh at them, and to laugh at the holidays that are already driving so many people crazy.
The Second City Nut-Cracking Holiday Revue runs through Dec. 21.
Have fun storming the castle
It’s an event that promises to be better than a sea full of shrieking eels, which, as you may know, always grow louder when they’re about to feed. But never mind that, and feast your senses on this: As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride. That’s right, there’s a book about the making of the cult classic film, and it was written by Cary Elwes, whom you might know as the movie’s hero, Westley. On , Elwes will be in San Diego to discuss his book, which recently debuted at No. 3 on The New York Times bestseller list and includes interviews with Billy Crystal, Fred Savage and Carol Kane, among others. The event starts at at the Jewish Community Center's Garfield Theater (4126 Executive Drive, La Jolla). Admission is $28 and includes a book. A pair of tickets with one book are $38. Seating is first come first serve and Elwes will sign books after the event. *This event has been rescheduled to 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 21.
Barrio Logan's increasingly becoming a go-to spot for art (see: the monthly, always awesome Barrio Art Crawl—next one's !), and, now, well-curated afternoon outdoor concerts.Concerts in the Barrio kicks off , with a performance by Quinteto Caballero, headed up by Latin-jazz trumpeter Bill Caballero and featuring piano, bass, congas and timbale. The band takes the stage from at Mercado del Barrio Plaza (corner of Cesar Chavez Parkway and Newton Avenue), giving you a chance to dance off those Thanksgiving calories. From there, concerts take place on the last Sunday of each month, with all-female mariachi band Mariachi Divinas scheduled to perform .
North Park can seem like two different neighborhoods, transforming from a blue-collar family district—complete with a local hardware store—during the day to urban hotspot at night. And a number of small businesses are attempting to cater to both locals and the Uber crowd. Exhibit A: North Park After Dark, which gives folks the best of both worlds. From , after the sun goes down and the bars start to buzz, more than three dozen businesses will offer refreshments, special deals and holiday-themed entertainment. Visit at least 10 participating spots and be entered into a raffle featuring more than $800 in prizes. Use the parking structure at 30th Street and North Park Way, and show' em that your locally made, hand-crafted boots were made for walking.
San Diego Beer Week's actually 10 days long. But "10 Days of Beer in San Diego" just doesn't have the same ring. That said, there are still several days of SDBW left. Here are four recommendations for folks who've been waiting on the sidelines: From , Tacos Perla (3000 Upas St., North Park) is the site of No Border: A Night of Craft Beer and Tacos, featuring brewers from Tijuana's Cerveceria Insurgente. After you hit up Tacos Perla, head over to Seven Grand (3054 University Ave.) for Barrel Aged Beer Tap Takeover, where from , you can taste pairings of five beers and the whiskey from the barrels it was aged in. From , OB Warehouse (4839 Newport Ave.) hosts the History of Craft Beer tasting and class ($30 per person), where you'll get to try 10 beers that helped define the craft movement. And, to round out your weekend, head over to Donuts, Coffee and Stout at Benchmark Brewing Co. (6190 Fairmount Ave., Grantville) happening from . See the SDBW website for all the details.
Artist Rita McBride’s sleek “Arena” installation is only partly complete. The intended finishing touch is when groups of people actually fill the intimate, stadium-like space, activating it through performances, readings and other public events. The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego will do just that with the upcoming Blind Date series, which kicks off at , at the museum's downtown location (1100 Kettner Blvd.). The interactive event features readings by members of the Art and Social Practice MFA program at Portland State that will bring the unique program (only six students a year are accepted) to life. The audience will get to be part of the performance by participating in an assignment from the program's "workbook," an ever-evolving text that explores how art can engage the public.
It's been more than four years since Sophia Hall opened Make Good in South Park (2207 Fern St.), a shop stocked entirely with locally made goods. Since then, Make Good's been one of our go-to spots for holiday gift guide ideas, not to mention our own personal shopping. From , the boutique's hosting its first Meet Your Maker event in the grass lot just a bit north of the store. Hall says they'll have some of their fave artisans from both San Diego and Tijuana on hand, selling their goods and available to talk to buyers about their craft (Natalie Cervantes' "Frida twins" shown here). Given the event's proximity to Dia de los Muertos, there will also be calavera face painters, a shrine made by local artists and Mexican ice cream from Calexico Creamery.