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Feb 13th
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Arts, Entertainment, Dining, Calendar

A&E

Blues Brother

Blues Brother

Pat Simmons hits the Blues Fest. In a GT interview, The Doobie Brothers’ guitarist/vocalist waxes nostalgic about Santa Cruz, opens up about the band’s origins and ponders the road ahead.

Who knew that the Santa Cruz Blues Festival, which began in 1993 as a one-day Chicago and Texas blues celebration in Aptos Village Park, would be alive and kicking 20 years later? And who could have predicted that the festival would boast a list of past performers that includes B.B. King, Ray Charles, John Lee Hooker, Joe Cocker, Etta James, Bonnie Raitt, Buddy Guy, Bobby “Blues” Bland and Albert Collins?

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A&E

Wave of Change

Wave of Change

Documentary about local nonprofit challenges stereotypes concerning the disabled and surf culture

Special education teacher/videographer Julie Pollack, remembers filming from West Cliff in 2000 as one of her students, Brandon Arthur, went surfing for the first time.

“He was a little guy in a wheelchair, not able to sit up on his own, talk, or really hold himself up in the water,” she says. “His parents told me about this woman who wanted to take him surfing, so I held my breath from the cliff and watched them paddle this little guy out on the water. We all kind of got hooked on it from there because you could tell he was just so thrilled.”

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Literature

The Next Chapter

The Next Chapter

On brink of closing, Capitola Book Café launches campaign to save store

When Capitola Book Café employees Wendy Mayer-Lochtefeld, Melinda Powers, Janet Leimeister, and Richard Lange became co-owners of the shop in 2007, the four booklovers had an inkling of the rough road ahead.

“The book business was already in decline at that point, but the decline sharpened deeply about a year after we took over, and then in 2008, the bottom fell out of the economy,” says Mayer-Lochtefeld. “So, our timing was not terrific. … [but] we were still in a good position to weather that storm until it sort of turned from a storm into a hurricane.”

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A&E

Senior Miss Sunshine

Senior Miss Sunshine

Flamboyant seniors help redefine beauty in Walter Matteson’s documentary ‘Pretty Old’

Walter Matteson was in Copenhagen, Denmark to visit his then-girlfriend (and now wife) when he first saw the photograph that sparked it all. The photo, hanging at the 2007 World Press Photo Exhibit, displayed three senior women in a backstage setting. “I had just seen sports photography and war photography, and I was like, ‘What in the world is that?’” remembers Matteson. “It almost looked something like a David Lynch painting to me; it was a large print—it was giant—that I saw from across the room and it didn’t look real.” The caption was simple: “Ms. Senior Sweetheart Beauty Pageant, Fall River, Massachusetts.”

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Theater

A Midwinter Night's Dream

A Midwinter Night's Dream

ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Cid Pearlman and an international cast bring a piece of Estonia to Santa Cruz in ‘From Estonia With Love

It all began in Estonia. Cid Pearlman was a Fulbright Scholar, teaching at Tallinn University for the 2009-2010 academic year. She spent the long winter instructing and researching, but most importantly, collaborating with five talented dance artists, three Estonians and two Americans: Tiina Mölder, Rain Saukas, Helen Reitsnik, Alexis Steeves and David King.

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A&E

Roll ’Em

Roll ’Em

Gamblers, and ukuleles, and hippies! Oh my! The 11th annual Santa Cruz Film Festival unveils an eclectic round of cinema.

Navigating a film festival is not unlike finding your way through a foreign city for the first time—it’s difficult to know what’s worth checking out. Fortunately, the Santa Cruz Film Festival, now in its 11th year, manages to spread out its  creative offerings enough so that attendees can plan ahead. Diversity is key in this year’s fest—from the opening night film, California State of Mind: The Legacy of Pat Brown (May 10) to more eclectic fare, such as EarthVision’s “shorts” program, Active Planet (May 16). Take note of the following 10 films that caught our eye; a fine mix of local and non-local films, narrative and documentary, domestic and international, short- and feature-length works. See you at the movies.

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Theater

Ghost Protocol

Ghost Protocol

Dead ex completes offbeat romantic triangle in JTC's entertaining 'Blithe Spirit'

A standard device of the classic drawing room comedy is the man with too many women: a wife and an ex-wife; a wife and a mistress; dueling girlfriends. In 1941, Noel Coward added a new, um, element to this classic situation in his comedy, “Blithe Spirit,” about a man, his wife, and the ghost of his previous wife (deceased). A fizzy concoction as dry as a martini, written as an antidote to the gloom of World War II, “Blithe Spirit” materializes once more in an upbeat and elegant new production by Jewel Theatre Company, the season finale to its seventh season.

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A&E

The Poems of Martina Evans

The Poems of Martina Evans

Editor’s note: This week’s Poetry Corner features Martina Evans, an Irish poet and novelist living in London. Evans’ fourth collection, “Facing the Public,” was named a Book of the Year by The Times Literary Supplement and won the 2011 Piero Ciampi International Poetry Prize. “Petrol,” a verse novel, is set for release by Anvil Press in September 2012.

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Literature

Finding Voice

Finding Voice

Author Terry Tempest Williams discovers the gift of mystery in her mother’s journals

A blank page can be a daunting prospect to begin with. But what if that’s all there is left in the end? On her deathbed, Terry Tempest Williams’ mother bequeathed all of her journals to her only daughter, with the caveat that she wouldn’t look at them until after she was gone. She told the then-30-year-old author, naturalist, and conservationist where to find the clothbound books. A week later, she died.

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Theater

Off the Cuff

Off the Cuff

Hilarity and humanity collide at the Santa Cruz Improv Fest

For those with a basic familiarity of improvisational theater, the words "improv" and "comedy" may be so closely related as to be virtually synonymous. Due in large part to the success of the television program Whose Line is it Anyway? and the ComedySportz live improv franchise, the theater genre is commonly associated with short-form gag-sprees, chock full of puns and one-liners.

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of February 12

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Pub Watch

Mega gastro pub-in-progress at the Old Sash Mill, plus the best pasta dish downtown

 

How do you know love is real?

When you feel the groove in your heart and you’re inspired to dance. Becca Bing, Boulder Creek, Teacher

 

Temple of Umami

Watsonville’s Miyuki is homestyle cooking, Japanese-style

 

How would you stop people from littering?

Teach them from the time that they’re small that it’s not an appropriate behavior. Juliet Jones, Santa Cruz, Claims Adjuster