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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Turn the page

Schuler Books & Music hits the big 3-0

by Bill Castanier
Bill and Cecile Fehsenfeld have seen a lot when it comes to the life of the modern bookstore. They were there for its conception, its first clumsy steps, its ugly teenage years and its bloated post-adolescence. But now their baby, Schuler Books & Music — the state's largest independent regional bookstore, with three locations in Grand Rapids and two in the Lansing area — is celebrating its 30th anniversary, just as the entire industry is entering a turbulent middle age. No one said being a parent was easy.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

The Zoobie's sessions

'Gypsy-jazz' band records album inside abandoned Old Town bar

by Rich Tupica
Dylan Rogers unlocks the back door of the dilapidated, vacant bar on the outskirts of Old Town, and slowly pushes it open. "Hello! Anybody here?" he shouts, carefully entering, crowbar in one hand, flashlight in the other. Then the stench hits— the kind of unpleasant odor only found in a building after years of neglect and vandalism. Thanks to Rogers and his wife, however, that odor is now ever so faintly covered up with the aroma of household cleansers.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Laugh track

Lansing student standup comedians polish their acts

by Rich Tupica
The notorious "Bill Hicks Hates Hecklers" video on YouTube is as good a crash course in standup comedy etiquette as you can get. In the grainy reel from the '80s, a drunken female heckler shouts, "You suck!" at Hicks, unleashing a string of primal screams from the comedian in which he calls her everything from a "drunk bitch" to an "idiot piece of shit." Lesson: do not call Bill Hicks names.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
City Pulse hosts: Teenage Slumber Party at Mac's The first in a series of upcoming City Pulse-hosted events happens Wednesday at Mac's Bar when Teenage Slumber Party and Catalina Wine Mixer play an early, all-ages show. Headlining is Teenage Slumber Party, a Grand Ledge-based punk-rock duo made up of Dylan Sowle (guitar/vocals) and Ariel Rogers (drums).
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Fierce creatures

Local facial hair enthusiasts take it on the chin in weekend competition

by Tracy Key
Whether you're sporting a daring Donegal, manly muttons or rocking a royale, fame, glory and prizes could be yours this Saturday when "beardos" from across the nation will their facial hair against each other. It's all part of the first Great Lakes Regional Beard and Moustache Championship, a growing new concept in competition.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Diversity now

Mosaic festival offers multi-cultural mash-up

by Tracy Key
Scales rub against skin as a 6-foot-long boa constrictor slithers down the curves of a woman's body. The woman twists and undulates on stage in front of hundreds of staring eyes. Suddenly you realize you forgot to put on your pants. Just kidding about the pants — this isn't really a nightmare (well, maybe for some people). But the snake is real, and his name is Amon Ra.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

How to race your dragon

Second annual Capitol City Dragon Boat Race sets weekend on fire

by Tracy Key
Time to start thinking about what you're doing this Labor Day weekend. Stuff your face with hot dogs and fruit salad? Look through granny's photo album for the umpteenth time at a family reunion? Or maybe dangle precariously from the horns of a Chinese dragon boat racing perilously down the Grand River? I think we know which of these options sounds most exciting.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

Enlightened darkness

Lansing artist conjures up top-secret Haunted Art Exhibition inside an abandoned schoolhouse

by Holly Johnson
With shattered windows, boarded-up doors, and white paint plastered over graffiti, this massive brick building — once a Lansing schoolhouse — satisfies all the visual qualities of a haunted house. It appears as if some demonic force, filled with equal parts splendor and spook, shot the building onto the property with a lightning bolt.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

New in town

Bar 30 & spare time entertainment center

by Allan I. Ross
The number 30 has inspired generations of navel-gazers to contemplate their unproductive lives and try to figure out where all the time went. In fact, card companies and party supply stores have made a good living selling dour 30th birthday paraphernalia, goading guests of honor into feeling prematurely over the hill. It's funny, then, that Bar 30 chose to slap that number right there in their name, numerophobes be damned.
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Monday, August 27,2012

Reviewing renegade

Food-themed shows rise to the top

by City Pulse Staff
Last weekend's Renegade Theatre Festival transformed Old Town into one big stage, as actors and actresses took over nine of the area's businesses and empty spaces. With show names like "Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner," "Comfort Food" and "Surviving Lunch," we couldn't help but notice a culinary theme.
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