Sweet street Sample local treats at Montrose Chocolate and Wine Festival

Sweet street Sample local treats at Montrose Chocolate and Wine Festival

Chocolate and wine make for the perfect pair.
Savor all the rich, sweet flavors during the Montrose Chocolate and Wine Festival, set for Saturday, May 18, along the borough’s Chestnut Street. Tickets to the rain-or-shine event cost $20 in advance and are available online at chocolatewinefestival.com until Thursday, May 16.
The event started more than a decade ago and has only grown larger since then, festival president Tom Follert said.
“It’s always been an event where we focus on locally made items, food, wine or beer and that goes for music, too,” he said, adding the entertainment is full of regional acts who play originals and cover songs. “It gives everyone there a place to showcase what they do.”
The day begins with the Run for Life 5K run/walk and kids’ fun run, which Follert said goes “hand-in-hand” with the festival and also includes its own set of vendors, food and activities for kids at the Green, 126 Maple St., Montrose. Proceeds from the event benefit the Button-Weller Family Cancer Fund through the Endless Mountains Community Foundation, which helps those with cancer in Susquehanna County.

Participation costs $20 for the run/walk, and the kids’ fun run is free. Registration begins at 9 a.m., but runners can sign up in advance online at runsignup.com. The fun run starts at 9:30, and the run/walk follows at 10.
At 2:30 p.m., the chocolate and wine festival begins and will go until 7:30. Guests can choose samplings from Pennsylvania wineries, grab microbrews on tap, and snack on food from gourmet vendors and, of course, chocolates. Crowds also can peruse wine-, chocolate- and art-related products from local artisans and watch the at-home wine-making demonstration.
Tickets also are available for purchase at select businesses. Wine-tasting tickets will be available at the gate the day of the event for $30, cash sales only. Entry for non-drinkers, ages 16 and older, costs $10. Entry is free for ages 15 and younger. Non-drinker tickets are available for purchase at the gate only. Regardless of when guests buy tickets, identification is required for proof of age.
In addition to featuring wine and chocolate, the event also started as a way to give back to the community, Follert said, and this year’s beneficiaries include Susquehanna County Library, United Fire Company, Susquehanna County Interfaith and Pink Arrow Arts.

“Every dollar goes back to the community,” Follert said, adding that the festival has raised over $280,000 over the past 11 years. “When we think back to when this first started, we can’t believe it’s, A., gone on this long; and B., raised over a quarter-million dollars. We’re just thrilled.”
Guests can enter the festival at Maple and Chestnut streets or at Church and Chestnut streets. Street parking will be available throughout Montrose as well as in a few designated areas.
Organizers hope the event continues to show Montrose residents and visitors everything the community has to offer, Follert said.
“We want people to just have a good time, and we really hope people leave feeling good about what they did that day,” he added. “When you come in, you get a sampling of wine, a chance to hear some really fantastic live music (and) spend time with friends … For us, it’s really the kickoff to summer.”

Fab 5 – May 16, 2019

Fab 5 – May 16, 2019

1. ‘Saturday Night Live with the Oldies’
Enjoy dinner and a night of music at “Saturday Night Live with the Oldies” on Saturday, May 18, at the Club at the Highlands, 2700 Highland Blvd., Jermyn. Dinner starts at 6 p.m.
The dinner dance will include music by the Bill Arnold Band; Billy & the Jets, an Elton John tribute act; Jukebox Memories; and Gino Mercuri, an Elvis tribute artist.
Tickets cost $45 for VIP seating, dinner, dancing and the show; $35 for premier seating, dinner and the show; and $15 for general admission (show only) after 7 p.m.
For tickets, call 570-499-4904 or 570-881-2236.

Taylor Carmella, 4, of Scranton, carries the American flag through the rain as he watches the Armed Forces Day Parade. Jason Farmer / Staff Photographer

2. Armed Forces Day parade
Pay tribute to the nation’s armed forces at events this week in downtown Scranton.
On Thursday, May 16, the NEPA Armed Forces Parade Luncheon runs from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Hilton Scranton & Conference Center, 100 Adams Ave., and feature guest speaker Col. Nathan M. Swartz, commander of Tobyhanna Army Depot. Lunch costs $20. For tickets, call the Tobyhanna Army Depot public affairs office at 570-615-7308.
Then, on Saturday, May 18, at 9:30 a.m., the Helping Hometown Heroes 5K run and one-mile walk begins and ends at Lackawanna County Courthouse Square. Registration costs $20 in advance and $25 that day. To register, visit runsignup.com or sign up that day from 8 to 9:15 a.m. Pre-registered runners can pick up their packets Friday, May 17, from 1 to 7 p.m. at Scranton Running Co., 3 W. Olive St.
Next, the Armed Forces Day parade steps off at 11 a.m. at Gino J. Merli Veterans’ Center, 401 Penn Ave. The parade will travel up Mulberry Street toward North Washington Avenue, where it will turn right, followed by another right onto Lackawanna Avenue before finishing at Mifflin Avenue. For details, visit the Facebook event page.

3. New Everhart exhibits
Two new exhibits come to the Everhart Museum’s Maslow Galleries this week.
“Paper,” a selection of prints and drawings on paper from the museum’s collection, and “The Good News,” photographs from in and around Scranton by Zak Zavada, open Friday, May 17. They will remain on display at the Everhart, 1901 Mulberry St., Scranton, through Monday, Sept. 9.
An opening reception for “The Good News” will take place Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. Admission costs $50 and includes food, cocktails, and music. Reservations are required.
The museum is open Mondays and Fridays from noon to 5 p.m.; Thursdays, noon to 7 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m. Admission costs $7 for adults, $5 for seniors and students, and $3 for children 6 to 12 and is free for children 5 and younger and active military with ID.
For more information, call 570-346-7186 or visit everhart-museum.org.

4. ‘Game of Thrones’ pop-up
Celebrate the grand finale of “Game of Thrones” at Stage West, 301 N. Main Ave., Scranton.
Ahead of the HBO show’s Sunday, May 19, series finale, the venue will hold a “Game of Thrones” pop-up dance party on Saturday, May 18. Doors open at 7 p.m., and entertainment starts at 8.
The 21-and-older event will include themed food and drinks, a costume contest and trivia. Tickets cost $10, and advanced purchases are recommended.
For tickets or more information, visit the Facebook event page. Call 570-343-7100 for details.

Justify with Mike Smith atop wins the the 143rd Preakness Stakes horse race at Pimlico race course, Saturday, May 19, 2018, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

5. Preakness Stakes Day
Catch a screening of the 144th Preakness Stakes Day at the local home of horse racing.
Mohegan Sun Pocono, 1280 Route 315, Plains Twp., will air the race from Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, on Saturday, May 18, on its jumbo screen and in simulcast. The race is the second leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown. Live television coverage of the main race runs from 5 to 7:15 p.m. on NBC.
Concessions at the casino’s racetrack open at 3 p.m., and free live music, including “A Tribute To Soultown” by Encorz & the Fellas, runs from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Pacer’s Clubhouse opens at 5 p.m., and guests can take advantage of a reservations-only all-you-can-eat dinner buffet (for reservations, call 888-946-4672). Live harness racing at the Mohegan Sun track then follows at 7:30.
Advance wagering will take place Friday, May 17; doors open at 11 a.m.
For more information, call 570-831-2100 or visit mohegansunpocono.com.

Mother of all weekends

Mother of all weekends

Celebrate mom with offbeat activities across NEPA

Moms deserve credit for all their hard work and the love they give year-round, but with Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 12, there’s plenty to do this weekend in Northeast Pennsylvania to show how much you care.
We’ve rounded up some out-of-the-box ideas for ways to celebrate the moms and motherly women in your life.
On Friday, May 10, drop in at the Greenhouse Project at Nay Aug Park, 500 Arthur Ave., Scranton, for a Mother’s Day Succulent Make and Take. Join staffer Carol between 2 and 4 p.m. to create an arrangement as a surprise or with the special mom in your life. The project uses upcycled items for the pots, with a minimum $5 donation suggested to cover soil and plant costs. The greenhouse also will have a wide variety of additional succulents available for purchase, including pre-made arrangements in decorative containers for those who don’t have time to stop in and make their own.
Support first responders by shopping for a unique Mother’s Day gift at the inaugural Mother’s Day Craft Show set for Saturday, May 11, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Dickson City Emergency Medical Services, 2 Eagle Lane. Admission is $2.
Enjoy the bounty of Mother Nature with a Mother’s Day Paddle hosted by Susquehanna Kayak and Canoe Rentals, 2374 Sullivan Trail, Falls Twp. On May 11 and 12, starting at 8 a.m. both days, bring your mom along for a scenic journey on the waterway. Moms paddle for free with a party of four, with trips starting at $45 per person. After, treat her to brunch or dinner at Ardee’s Foodrinkery. Brunch runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on May 12, while dinner service runs from 5 to 8 p.m. Reservations are required for kayaking (call 570-388-6107) and are suggested for brunch and dinner, too (call 570-388-2511).
Looking for something really different? Treat mom to ringside seats at the Mother’s Day Melee on May 11, when Back Breakers Entertainment comes to Falcon’s Nest, 403 Hudson St., Mayfield. At its first show outside the Back Breakers Training Center, see BBE and BBTC students and wrestlers, including Carver Cross, Coach Cal, Rex Taylor, Alexander Bateman, Cyrus Mars, Adena Steele, Harszang, Trevor Trudeau, Tucker Riley, Demitrius Raid and Rodd Wylder as well as a variety of local independent stars, including Clay Drasher, Ken Andrews, Jak Molsonn, Danny Hamel, Kimberly Spirit, Zac Belmont, Karlo Vice and many more. The night also promises a Battle Royale for the No. 1 contender’s spot, the winner of which will then face off against BBE’s Squid Sterling for the BBE Heavyweight Championship during the main event of the night. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with bell at 7. Ringside tickets cost $20, and general admission is $15. Tickets can be purchased in advance at Falcon’s Nest, online at http://bbemelee.bpt.me or at the door. All advance ticket-holders gain early access to the venue at 6 p.m. and can meet all the wrestlers. Refreshments will be available for purchase.
Support a good cause with the Mother’s Day Weekend Fundraiser for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on May 11. From 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Spirited Art, 253 Scranton-Carbondale Highway, Dickson City, invites painters 16 and older to bring in a special mom, aunt or lady to create a butterfly portrait. Tickets cost $35 and are available through rezclick.com, with a portion of proceeds being donated to the society. Arrive 15 minutes before the class to pick a seat.
Check out the fifth annual Mother’s Day Brunch at Nearme Yoga, 700 Main St., Moosic, on May 12 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Guests will start with a gentle yoga class and gratitude meditation, then sip on mimosas (or fresh juice) and enjoy butlered hors d’oeuvres and a healthy lunch from Nearme Café. Admission is $55 for two, $75 for three and $90 for four, with group pricing valid only when purchased together. You must sign up at least 24 hours in advance. Call 570-840-3220 for more information.
It takes a village to raise a child, and so Misericordia University, Dallas, will host its fourth annual Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch to benefit the student mothers of the Ruth Matthews Bourger Women with Children Program on May 12 in Sandy and Marlene Insalaco Hall. Proceeds will help provide tuition support for student mothers in the program. The menu includes scrambled eggs, Potatoes O’Brien, cinnamon vanilla French toast, bacon, sausage, a waffle station, granola, yogurt, fruit, Viennese pastries, muffins, Caesar salad, ham carving station, roasted turkey, mustard-glazed salmon, sautéed green beans, tortellini a la vodka and an assortment of desserts. Coffee, tea and soft drinks will be served along with Champagne, mimosas and Bloody Marys. A special children’s buffet will feature macaroni and cheese, chicken fingers, cheese hot dogs, corn and french fries. Doors open at 10:30 a.m., and seating begins at 11.
The brunch also includes a silent auction and basket raffle, with some baskets offering more than $500 worth of prizes. (A pre-sale on tickets for the “Parade of Baskets” will be held May 10 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Insalaco Hall lobby.) Tickets cost $50 for adults and $20 for children 12 to 18; children under 12 enter for free. Because of limited seating, reservations are required. Visit cougarconnect.miseri cordia.edu/wwcbrunch19 or call Kim Caffrey at 570-674-1877 to register or get more information.
Celebrate the importance of mom’s role with a theatrical performance at Music Box Dinner Playhouse, 196 Hughes St., Swoyersville, on May 12. The Music Box Players will stage the musical comedy “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder” with a special meal offered to enhance the experience. The menu includes choice of Chicken Parmigiana over Spaghetti with Marinara Sauce, Beef Tenderloin Tips, Crab-stuffed Flounder or Pasta Primavera with salads, side dishes and choice of desserts. Mothers also will receive a flower. The price for the dinner and show is $38, with show-only tickets also available for $20. Doors open at 1 p.m., dinner is served at 1:30, and the curtain rises at 3. For reservations, call 570-283-2195 or email reservations@musicbox.org.
And Stage West, 301 N. Main Ave., Scranton, will present a Mother’s Day Concert featuring Tom Petty tribute band Damn the Torpedos on May 12. Doors to the 21-and-older show open at 6 p.m., with the show starting at 8. General admission costs $25 (seating is not guaranteed). The venue also will have food and refreshments for sale.
No matter what kind of mom you love, NEPA has the right entertainment to treat her to a special time this week.

Fab 5 – May 9, 2019

Fab 5 – May 9, 2019

1. ‘Take Me Home Colleen’
An all-ages show featuring folk ballads about the Irish experience will raise money for a memorial project.
“Take Me Home, Colleen” will take place Saturday, May 11, at 7 p.m. at the Theater at North, 1539 N. Main Ave., Scranton. Doors open at 6:30.
Created by musician and songwriter Brendan Farrell, the show focuses on Sean Og Gaughan (Farrell) and Colleen Boyle (Edana Barrett) and their lives in Ireland’s County Mayo during the famine of the 1840s. In addition to a dozen original contemporary ballads, the show features film, photography and Irish folk tunes.
Tickets cost $30 for general admission and $50 for the VIP level, which includes a post-show meet-and-greet. Proceeds will benefit the Officer John Wilding Memorial and the Garda William Golden Memorial.

2. Carnival at the Park
St. Cats and Dogs, a Scranton-based animal rescue and trap-neuter-return organization, is again hosting an all-ages carnival in the heart of the city’s Nay Aug Park.
Featuring rides, food and games, the carnival is now open and runs through Saturday, May 11, starting at 6 p.m. in the part of the park across from the Everhart Museum, 1901 Mulberry St.
Wristbands for rides cost $15 on Thursday, May 9, from 6 p.m. to close and on Saturday from 2 to 6 p.m. On Wednesday, May 8; Friday, May 10; and Saturday from 6 p.m. to close, wristbands cost $20. The wristbands provide the bearer with 22 ride tickets, with rides costing an average of three tickets.
Proceeds benefit St. Cats and Dogs, which is housed in the former Nay Aug Park zoo building.

3. Spring Wine Festival
Indulge in food and drinks from Pennsylvania vendors at the third annual Spring Wine Festival at Montage Mountain Resorts, 1000 Montage Mountain Road, Scranton.
Presented by Harvest Seasonal Grill and Wine Bar, the festival will take place Saturday, May 11, from 1 to 6 p.m. Participants include Deer Creek Winery, Courtyard Winery, Seven Mountain Wine Cellars, Buddy Boy Winery + Vineyards, Kulpmont Winery, Hidden Creek Vineyards, Sand Castle Winery, Sorrenti’s Cherry Valley Vineyards, Wood Lodge Winery, University Wine Co. and Bee Kind Winery. Numerous food and retail vendors also will be on hand.
Bluegrass band Serene Green and solo acoustic musician Asialena Bonitz will provide entertainment.
General admission costs $19 in advance and $30 at the door. Tickets include a tasting glass and wine sampling, but guests also will be able to buy wines by the glass and bottle. For tickets, visit ticketfly.com.

4. Karl Hall concert

Downtown Wilkes-Barre venue Karl Hall, 57 N. Main St., has a full slate of music planned for this weekend.
On Friday, May 10, hear folk, bluegrass and jazz music by Charming Disaster, Dave Brown and Friends, and Spencer Reed will perform, with songs starting at 8 p.m. Admission costs $10.
Then, on Saturday, May 11, Blind Choice, Look Alive, Mellifluous and Into Sunday will take the stage. Doors to the all-ages, BYOB show open at 7 p.m., and the cover costs $10.
For more information, email info@karlhall.org or visit karlhall.org.

5. The Lords of 52nd Street
A group of musicians who backed Billy Joel on many of his recordings and tours take their sound to Wilkes-Barre on Saturday, May 11.
The Lords of 52nd Street — including Richie Cannata, Liberty DeVitto and Russell Javors — will perform at F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, 71 Public Square, at 8 p.m. Doors open at 6:30.
The band worked with Joel for more than a decade, recording the albums “The Stranger,” “52nd Street,” “Glass Houses” and “The Nylon Curtain” with the legendary Piano Man. With Joel, they toured around the world, performing at venues including Wembley Stadium, the Royal Albert Hall, the Sydney Opera House, Madison Square Garden and Carnegie Hall.
After 30 years apart and their induction into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame, the Lords of 52nd Street reunited and continue to tour regularly.
Tickets cost $28, $33 and $38, plus fees, and are available at the box office, kirbycenter.org and 570-826-1100

Off to the races

Off to the races

Mark Kentucky Derby Day with events around the region

Celebrate the greatest two minutes in sports with hours of fun at area venues.
Many local Kentucky Derby Day parties even support good causes, so grab a big hat and hit the town for the horse race set for Saturday, May 4.
The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, 1280 Route 315, Wilkes-Barre, gets a jump on Kentucky Derby Day activities with advance wagering opening at 10 a.m. on Friday, May 3, aka Kentucky Oaks Day. On Saturday, May 4, the casino will host what it promises to be “the biggest party North of Churchill Downs” with a Champagne brunch that runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and a double-header of live harness racing at 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. The full bar opens in the Clubhouse Lobby at 11 a.m., while the trackside bars and food concessions open at 3 p.m. Guests also can enjoy an all-you-can-eat dinner buffet between 5:30 and 9 p.m. at Pacer’s Clubhouse, though reservations are required by calling 888-946-4672. Mint juleps will be available in souvenir Kentucky Derby 145 glasses. From 2 to 6 p.m., a $3 donation to Standardbred Retirement Foundation earns guests a turn in a souvenir photo booth, and a Run for the Roses Hat Revue will offer cash prizes in six categories. To compete, register in the racing lobby between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m., with judging set to take place at 5:30 in front of the Winner’s Circle.

Visit any of the following on May 4 for Derby Day fun:

The Jive, 113 Van Brunt St., Moscow, inside the former public library building, will host a Kentucky Derby Party from 3 to 9 p.m. The party will include drink specials and prizes for the best hats. The bar offers craft beer, a wine bar and fresh, original food made from scratch for sale. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

Nick’s Lake House, 20 South Lake Drive, Lake Harmony, will host a Kentucky Derby Party starting at 3:30 p.m. The event will feature horse betting and 50/50 chances, Derby-themed bake sale and food and drink specials, and a contest for hats and Best Dressed. Proceeds support the Penn Kidder Library. For more information, call 570-722-2500 or email cyndipantages@gmail.com, or visit the Facebook event page.

The Country Club of Scranton, 1001 Morgan Highway, Clarks Summit, will be the place for a Kentucky Derby Party hosted by the Voluntary Action Center of Northeast PA from 4 to 8 p.m. The event costs $90 in advance or $100 at the door and includes buffet, open bar, games of chance and live music. The party is VAC-NEPA’s largest fundraiser of the year, with proceeds being used to support the organization’s community programs. For more information, call 570-347-5616, visit vacnepa.org for tickets, and check the event Facebook page for updates.

Backyard Ale House, 523 Linden St., Scranton, will have a Blue Moon Kentucky Derby Party from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. Guests will be able to grab up Blue Moon dress vests, handkerchiefs and collector Kentucky Derby 22-ounce glasses — which can be filled with Blue Moon for $4 — all while supplies last.

Jack’s Draft House, 802 Prescott Ave., Scranton, will host a Kentucky Derby Day Party from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Admission is $15 in advance or $20 at the door and includes one mint julep drink, with proceeds supporting educational programs at the Greenhouse Project in Nay Aug Park. The Hill Section tavern will offer a cash bar plus food off the regular menu for sale, and there will be a hat contest for the best men’s, women’s and upcycled or handmade head gear. For advance tickets, visit eventbrite.com, and for more information, visit the Facebook event page.

And Paupack Hills Golf and Country Club, 125 Country Club Drive, Greentown, will host its own Kentucky Derby Party from 5 to 8 p.m. The free celebration will feature Kentucky Brown Sliders and mint juleps for sale, an exquisite hat contest, plus gambling just for fun.

Contact the writer:
pwilding@timesshamrock.com; 570-348-9100 x5369; @pwildingTT on Twitter

Fairy tale classic a shoe-in

Fairy tale classic a shoe-in

Ballet Theatre senior company to stage ‘Cinderella’ for spring production

For Ballet Theatre of Scranton’s senior company, “Cinderella” proved to be a perfect fit.
Dancers from the studio will present the fairytale classic as their spring production on Saturday, May 4, at 2 and 7:30 p.m. at Theater at North, 1539 N. Main Ave., Scranton. Tickets cost $15-$25 and can be purchased at tututix.com.
While audiences can’t expect the animated Disney version of the story, Ballet Theatre artistic director Joanne D. Arduino said they will see the close relationship between Cinderella and her father, as well as the conflict between the young girl and her stepmother.
The third act features dances that highlight Andalusian, far Eastern and other cultures that represent the prince’s journey to find who fits the slipper.
“And from there, the story holds true,” Arduino said. “He does find Cinderella and they live happily ever after.”
Selena Knowlton, who danced with Ballet Theatre up until last year, stars as Cinderella, and Jose Hurtado portrays the Prince. Both are students at the Rock School for Dance Education, Philadelphia, and “talented young dancers,” Arduino said. They are among a cast of more than 50 regional dancers plus Ballet Theatre alum Elizabeth Conway, who will dance the role of Fairy Godmother.
The show will be complete with dreamy fairy tale scenery and costumes, a life-size pumpkin coach and a technical team that includes Emmy Award-winning light designer Dennis M. Size, who frequently returns to Scranton to lend a hand with Arduino’s productions.
The production is based on the Bolshoi Ballet production in Russia and was originally staged by international ballet master (and another frequent Ballet Theatre collaborator) Henry Danton in 1994. That same year, area native Karen Keeler, creative director for the Rockettes, starred as Cinderella. The production was restaged in 2011 and Ardruino chose it again this year.
“We do a lot of the classics but it’s always nice to get back to a fairy tale,” Arduino said, adding that any little ones who come to the show are welcome to dress up in princess costumes. “It’s nice that it’s a new generation of dancers and a new generation of audiences that get to experience this ballet.”


While audiences can’t expect the animated Disney version of the story, Ballet Theatre artistic director Joanne D. Arduino said they will see the close relationship between Cinderella and her father, as well as the conflict between the young girl and her stepmother.
The third act features dances that highlight Andalusian, far Eastern and other cultures that represent the prince’s journey to find who fits the slipper.
“And from there, the story holds true,” Arduino said. “He does find Cinderella and they live happily ever after.”
Selena Knowlton, who danced with Ballet Theatre up until last year, stars as Cinderella, and Jose Hurtado portrays the Prince. Both are students at the Rock School for Dance Education, Philadelphia, and “talented young dancers,” Arduino said. They are among a cast of more than 50 regional dancers plus Ballet Theatre alum Elizabeth Conway, who will dance the role of Fairy Godmother.
The show will be complete with dreamy fairy tale scenery and costumes, a life-size pumpkin coach and a technical team that includes Emmy Award-winning light designer Dennis M. Size, who frequently returns to Scranton to lend a hand with Arduino’s productions.
The production is based on the Bolshoi Ballet production in Russia and was originally staged by international ballet master (and another frequent Ballet Theatre collaborator) Henry Danton in 1994. That same year, area native Karen Keeler, creative director for the Rockettes, starred as Cinderella. The production was restaged in 2011 and Ardruino chose it again this year.
“We do a lot of the classics but it’s always nice to get back to a fairy tale,” Arduino said, adding that any little ones who come to the show are welcome to dress up in princess costumes. “It’s nice that it’s a new generation of dancers and a new generation of audiences that get to experience this ballet.”

Fab 5 – May 2, 2019

Fab 5 – May 2, 2019

1. Books Appétit
Valley Community Library’s largest fundraiser, Books Appétit, will take place Thursday, May 2, at the library, 739 River St., Peckville.
The annual event runs from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and includes a wine tasting with Case Quattro Winery, food from dozens of local restaurants, open bar featuring soda, beer and wine, raffle baskets and prizes.
Proceeds from Books Appétit will be used for library’s programs and services and to purchase new and upgraded equipment. The fundraiser also will serve as a NEPA Match Day event. For every dollar raised, Scranton Area Community Foundation will match it up to $1000.
Tickets cost $25 and are available in advance or at the door. For more information, call 570-489-1765.

2. Actors Circle at Providence Playhouse presents ‘Pygmalion’
Actors Circle at Providence Playhouse, 1256 Providence Road, Scranton, will present “Pygmalion” Thursday, April 25, through Sunday, April 28, and Thursday, May 2, through Sunday, May 5.
Thursdays through Saturdays, the show will start at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
The story focuses on two linguists who make a bet they can transform the life of Cockney, working-class flower girl by teaching her proper English dialect. One of George Bernard Shaw’s best known plays, it’s an updated version Greek legend of Pygmalion and Galatea. A musical version of the story, “My Fair Lady” was later adapted into a Broadway musical and film.
Tickets cost $12 general admission, $10 for senior citizens and $8 for students. On Thursday, April 25, tickets cost $8 for general admission and senior citizens and $6 for students. For reservations, call 570-342-9707.

Abington Heights High School freshman Giovanni “Gino” Mercuri sings and performs as Elvis Presley during his tribute shows. JAKE DANNA STEVENS / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

3. ‘Saturday Night Live with the Oldies’
Debra Records Music presents “Saturday Night Live with the Oldies” featuring Elvis tribute artist Gino Mercuri, the Mahoney Brothers, Jukebox Heroes and Leather & Lace.
The show takes place Saturday, May 4, at St. Mary’s Center, 320 Mifflin Ave., Scranton. Doors open at 5 p.m. and the show begins at 7. There will be a cash bar as well as a food court provided by Villa Maria II.
General admission tickets cost $30 in advance and $35 day of show. VIP seats cost $45 in advance and $50 day of show.
Tickets can be purchased online at debrarecordsmusic.co­m or by calling 570-499-4904.

4. 18th annual Free Comic Book Day
Regional shops will celebrate the 18th annual Free Comic Book Day on Saturday, May 4.
Rubber Mallet Comics, 802 Wyoming Ave., West Pittston, kicks off the day with costumed heroes, Funko Pops, statues and pins available starting at 10 a.m. for all ages. Free comic books including titles from Avengers, Spider-Man, Doctor Who, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Pokemon, Stranger Things, Riverdale, Firefly and more, as well as DC Comics’ special “Year of the Villians.”
For more information, call 570-655-5522 or visit rmcomics.com or the shop’s Facebook page.
Comics on the Green, 307 N Washington Ave., Scranton, will host face-painting, sales and free comics on hand from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The all-ages event also will host writer Scott Beatty from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., known for works including “Batgirl Year One,” “The Ultimate Guide to Batman” and “Star Wars Adventures.”
For more information, call 570-342-5960 or visit the event’s Facebook page.

5. ‘Taste of Fringe’
The SPACE at Olive, 541 Wyoming Ave., Scranton will host “Taste of Fringe” on Thursday, May 2, from 6 to 9 p.m.
The evening, which benefits Scranton Fringe Festival and its 2019 season, features live performances, visual art, hors d’oeuvres, and a cash bar.
Tickets cost $25 and are available online. There also will be a limited number of tickets to purchase at the door.
There will be free parking on the street and within the Lackawanna College parking lot, directly across the street from the venue. Guests are asked to wear the official Fringe colors, red, white or black.
For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page or call The SPACE at Olive, 570- 346-2421.

The secret’s out

The secret’s out

Scranton speakeasy opens with jazz, burlesque

When the red light goes on, the night begins.
That signal, long tied to old-time bawdy houses and the city underworlds in which they operated, today announces that a new downtown hot spot is open for business.
Madame Jenny’s — with its vintage decor and seating and cabaret-style stage — will open Friday, April 26, in the former private event space at the rear of Ale Mary’s, 126 Franklin Ave., Scranton, and help usher in a new era of drinking, dining and entertainment in Scranton.
“When I first purchased the Bittenbender Building more than six years ago, I envisioned opening a gastro pub and a speakeasy from the start,” said the building’s developer, Arthur Russo. “Madame Jenny’s is the culmination of that original vision. It’s something unique not only in downtown Scranton but in the entire area. We’re able to do this now that someone like Wendy (Wilson) has come on board with me. It’s something an older (crowd) is looking for and a younger crowd will appreciate.”

Local musician Tyler Dempsey will lead the venue’s house band, Madame Jenny’s Jazz Orchestra, during Friday’s sneak peek, when guests can enter for free. The grand opening then will take place the next night, Saturday, April 27, when Tansy Burlesque Troupe out of New York City comes to town. Doors open at 8 p.m., and the show starts at 9. Tickets start at $35 and are available on Madame Jenny’s website.
Wilson, the venue’s hospitality director, hopes the speakeasy will attract locals as well as people from the Lehigh Valley and the Poconos.
“We’re putting together a lot of incredible programs,” she said.
Vintage style
Russo previously converted the building’s upper levels into apartments and established bar/restaurant Ale Mary’s on the ground floor. He and Wilson, a longtime friend, had wanted to work together on a project for many years and finally united for the speakeasy. Joined in the project by Russo’s son, Zach, the group named the space for Jennie Duffy, who operated a bawdy house in Scranton for many years in the early 20th century. They renovated the space to reflect the style of the 1920s, the height of the Prohibition Era in which more than 150 speakeasies sprang up in Scranton, Wilson said.
“There’s honestly nothing around like this,” Zach Russo said.
Deep-red walls and dark wood envelope the room, which features a stage perfectly sized for small ensembles at one end and a bar to one side, all with vintage lighting, seating and glassware originally from the historic Waldorf Astoria hotel.
“Arthur, who is an aficionado of all things classic architecture, was able to get this through auction,” Wilson said.
In front of the stage, they set small tables, while larger booths and tables reach to the back of the room. Wilson said they envision guests being able to reserve the stage-side tables for an additional cost during some performances. But the venue also can arrange tables and chairs to accommodate various types of private events, including weddings and showers.


An adjacent lounge, meanwhile, boasts leather-inspired walls and a bar and will serve as another event space to complement the main room. If that main room is hosting an event, for example, guests can gather in the lounge until the main room is cleared for the next one, Wilson said.
Madame Jenny’s will open Wednesdays through Saturdays at 5 p.m. with entertainment beginning around 6 or 6:30, Wilson said, and it will follow what the crowd demands in terms of how late it stays open. The venue will accept reservations.
Guests can enter Madame Jenny’s through Ale Mary’s and into the outer lounge, where an old vault door from the property will lead them through a hallway designed to feel like a back alley taking them to a hidden speakeasy. Or, guests can come through a door in Raymond Court, the alley behind the Bittenbender. Both doors will have a red light outside them that, when lit, will let guests know Madame Jenny’s is open for business.
All that jazz and more
Wilson expects to bring in not only musicians but also stand-up comedians and burlesque, and with Jenny’s just a two-hour drive from New York City, it could attract national acts, too. She sees it as a revival of the old adage that if you can play Scranton, you can play anywhere. The venue’s soft opening earlier in April, for instance, featured an Édith Piaf-inspired ensemble featuring members of the touring “The King and I” production in its debut performance.
“The audiences here love these artists, and that inspires them,” she said, noting that out-of-town performers can stay overnight in an apartment above the venue.
Madame Jenny’s “goes hand in hand” with jazz, Dempsey said, who expects his group to perform a mix of jazz styles, from classic piano trio songs to New Orleans-influenced tunes on Friday nights.
“As soon as I was in and saw the stage and the space, I was thrilled. … It feels like a concert atmosphere,” he said. “(It) feels like a listening room.”
Madame Jenny’s will share a kitchen with Ale Mary’s, and Chef James Bodnar has crafted a French-inspired menu of small plates to compliment what Wilson called the classy, classic cocktails Madame Jenny’s bar will serve.

“We want someone to come in here and have the best Manhattan they’ve ever had in their life,” she said.
Zach Russo noted that they have named drinks after “people of the time,” such as other local madams and the Scranton mayor who led the shutdown of speakeasies and bawdy houses. They want Madame Jenny’s to complement Ale Mary’s, he added, with mixed drinks in the speakeasy and craft beer in the restaurant up front.
Wilson said she has been “so impressed” by the people who already found Jenny’s through social media and word of mouth. And seeing people gather for the soft opening brought tears to everyone’s eyes, she said.
“Once (my father) actually saw everybody sitting down, watching the show, seeing what we had on stage, he was blown away,” Zach Russo said.


Contact the writer:
cwest@timesshamrock.com; 570-348-9100 x5107; @cheaneywest on Twitter

Sister Act

Sister Act

Temple shakes things up with drag show fundraiser

Fundraising can be a drag.
At least, that’s what the board members of Scranton’s Temple Hesed are banking on being true for their next big event.
On Saturday, April 27, the temple at 1 Knox Road will host “Callaway-We-Go,” a comedic lip-synch concert featuring drag performers Carol Ann Carol Ann and Sharron Ann Husbands.
The show presents a different version of drag, the stars explained, and is meant to be an homage to the Tony-nominated sister act of Liz and Ann Hampton Callaway. Based on the Callaways’ legendary 1996 cabaret show, which was recorded and went on to become a force of its own, “Callaway-We-Go” is a recreation of the staged collection of American standards, Broadway and Great American Songbook classics.
“Their harmonies are just unbelievable, as only siblings can have, and the arrangements of the music are beautiful. They locomotion right out of you,” said Jerry Schmidt, who performs as Carol Ann Carol Ann. “It’s fun to listen to, and it draws the audience in.”
His longtime stage partner, Tim Hahn, aka Sharron Ann Husbands, noted that his own theater background lends a different flavor to the revue, making it unique from other drag performances guests may have seen.
“Manipulating the script to make it your own is so, so much fun,” said Hahn, a Pittston native. “We interact with the crowd, and whatever happens, happens — but we always make our way back to the script.
“There’s so many different types of drag,” Hahn added. “We do a lot of songs that you need to be convincing with. You need to memorize every breath, every intake, every elevation of voice. You have to make it seem like it’s really you singing. It really is so fun.”
“Our hope is that line is blurred. When we nail that, it’s just incredible,” Schmidt said.
He and Hahn have met the real Callaway sisters several times, which Schmidt noted helps inform the performance.
“It’s always fun to see someone you’re impersonating,” Schmidt said. “How they hold the mic, how they breathe. These two women have embraced us and are just so fabulous.”
Though parents should exercise discretion since the show begins at 8 p.m., the performance is considered family-friendly. Temple Hesed board member and fundraiser chairwoman Jennifer Novak said she plans to bring her kids to the show.

The Dunmore resident, who joined the temple after moving to the area more than six years ago, wanted to “raise the bar” with this year’s fundraiser, opting to book “Callaway-We-Go” instead of the usual comedians for the fundraiser.
“We wanted to create a similar but more elaborate event,” Novak said. “The committee brainstormed, and we tried to go along with the mission of the temple. One thing we like about it is it’s very diverse and inclusive — we try to do a lot with LGBTQ. We’re a very welcoming temple.
“But I wanted to shake things up a little, and I think history might be being made, because I think this might be the first drag show being held in a temple in Scranton,” she said. “It’s going to be a light evening. The drag queens are going to be campy and bantering.”
Proceeds from the event will be used to support the temple’s programming, which includes efforts for Jews and non-Jews alike, such as backpacks for kids who can’t afford all their school supplies, and food drives.
“I always feel like it’s great to do these events to bring the temple community together, but even better if the greater NEPA community comes together to support them,” Novak said. “It’s a great way to show them all the great things temple offers, even for the non-Jewish. It plays a very influential role, and we do a lot of social-action programs.”

Contact the writer:
pwilding@timesshamrock.com; 570-348-9100 x5369;
@pwildingTT on Twitter

Fab 5- April 25, 2019

Fab 5- April 25, 2019

1. ‘Art in Bloom’
Spring is in the air — and in the galleries — at the Everhart Museum.
The Scranton museum, 1901 Mulberry St., will host its inaugural “Art in Bloom” program Friday, April 26, and Saturday, April 27. The program, which takes place at museums across the country, challenges local floral designers to create fresh arrangements based on museum paintings.
A preview reception will take place Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. and include music, food, and cocktails catered by POSH at the Scranton Club. Tickets cost $40 for members and $50 for nonmembers.
Then, on Saturday, guests can check out the event for free when the museum hold its Community Day from 1 to 4 p.m. The day will include will guided workshops, lectures and gallery tours.
Guests can donate to vote for the People’s Choice Award, and that money will go toward the Everhart’s participation in Scranton Area Community Foundation’s Match Day fundraising initiative.
While at the museum, guests can check out a related exhibit, “Art of Nature,” in Gallery 7 on the first floor. The collection of floral prints and paintings as well as pressed botanicals will be on display through Monday, May 20. The museum is open Mondays and Fridays, noon to 5 p.m.; Thursdays, noon to 7 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m.
For more information, call 570-346-7186 or visit everhart-museum.org.

2. Soul Shakers CD release party
The Soul Shakers, a NEPA funk rock, blues and R&B known for throwing the jam-fest showcase “Winter Blues Guitarmageddon” at Scranton Cultural Center at The Masonic Temple, will host its CD release party on Friday, April 26, at Arlo’s Country Store & Tavern, 10340 Route 171, Union Dale.
The album, titled the “Northeastern Pennsylvania Rockin’ Blues Sampler,” includes 10 tracks — mostly recognizable covers — with features from many well-known local musicians, such as Phyllis Hopkins, MiZ and Mojomo, among others. Some of these guest artists may join the Soul Shakers during the release show, which starts at 7:30 p.m.
“We’re highlighting some of the talent we have here. It just amazes me constantly,” said bassist Bill Coleman. “A lot of them have done blues jams with us at Arlo’s (before), and that’s sort of the genesis of this.”
Keyboardist Eric Brody agreed, calling NEPA a “hidden gem” for high levels of musical talent and noting that the Soul Shakers’ release show will serve as both another great showcase of live performance and a way to provide fans with a tangible way to revisit the band’s best songs.
“This is for the regulars who come out all the time and want to have something in hand to play,” Brody said.

3. Blasts from the past
Two shows coming to Lackawanna County this weekend focus on hits from yesteryear.
On Friday, April 26, the Theater at North, 1539 N. Main Ave., Scranton, hosts “The Rat Pack Together Again.” Doors open at 7:30 p.m., and the show starts at 8.
Audiences will hear hits made famous by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. Tickets cost $25 to $35 and are available at the box office and thetheateratnorth.org.
Then, on Sunday, April 28, head to Fiorelli’s Catering, 1501 Main St., Peckville, for the “Jersey Four Dinner Show” featuring the music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Music begins at 3 p.m. with the main act taking the stage at 6:15.
Tickets start at $62 and include entertainment and dinner. The Luongo Brothers and Elvis tribute artist Giovanni “Gino” Mercuri will open the show, and Joe Long, an original member of the Four Seasons, will make an appearance.
For more information, visit jztours.com or call 570-344-2212.

4. Purse bingo fundraiser
A purse bingo set for Sunday, April 28, looks to raise money for children and adults with emotional, behavioral and developmental disabilities in Northeast Pennsylvania.
Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health Pocono will host the 20-game bingo at the Space at Olive, 541 Wyoming Ave., Scranton. Doors open at noon, and tickets cost $25 in advance and $30 at the door.
Participatnts will have a chance to win Coach, Dooney & Bourke and Michael Kors purses in addition to raffles. Four special games also will be available for an extra $5 each.
Meals on Wheels Community Services of NEPA will provide concessions.
For more information, contact Theresa Russell at 570-839-6140 or theresa.russell@devereux.org. Visit the Facebook event page for tickets.

5. Bob Lewis and Megan Palmer
A Northeast Pennsylvania native returns to the region for a show with a fellow Nashville songwriter.
Bob Lewis, who now calls East Nashville home, will perform with Megan Palmer on Saturday, April 27, at 8 p.m. at Karl Hall, 57 N. Main St., Wilkes-Barre. Doors open at 7:30.
Lewis spent two decades performing in the local punk and rock scenes and released his latest EP, “End of an Error,” in November. Palmer, meanwhile, is known for her violin-playing and songwriting skills. She released the album “What She’s Got To Give” in 2016, and her recent cancer battle inspired her newest single, “Stetson.”
Wilkes-Barre songwriter and music producer James Yamrus, an engineer at Wilkes-Barre’s King Room Studios, also will take part in the show. His upcoming album is titled “Awake.”
Tickets cost $10 and are available at karlhall.org and eventbrite.com.

Growing like a weed

Growing like a weed

Cannabis festival hopes to keep drawing in crowds with day of action

The fifth annual Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival will take over Nay Aug Park in Scranton for a full day of music, education, food and more.
Founded in the city in 2015, the free festival this year will take place Saturday, April 20, starting at 9 a.m. and featuring 10 hours of live music on three stages. Set to attend are Root Shock, Suburban Sensi, Philadelphia Slick, Brahctopus, the Holtzmann Effect, Rogue Chimp, Young Lion, Eric Harvey & Friends, Dee Maple Band, Canary Circus and Friends of the Family.
The Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival is a celebration of the cannabis culture and also will include live art, vendors and guest speakers. Since its conception, Pennsylvania has legalized the use of medical cannabis, but other uses remain outlawed.

Tommy DeWald of Reading dances with a hula hoop at the Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival at Nay Aug Park in Scranton on Sunday, April 22, 2018. Christopher Dolan / Staff Photographer

“We will continue to hold this event for years to come even after the cannabis prohibition is lifted,” festival spokesman Jeff Zick said.
Festival speakers will come in from around the country to educate people about cannabis and its potential values. The festival also will have around 250 merchandise vendors and 20 food vendors, including Manning’s Ice Cream, Uncle Bucks BBQ and West Side Flavas.
Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival has grown greatly over the last few years, with more than 10,000 attending last year. And organizers believe it has had a great impact on the local community.
“Two or three years ago, people would arrive just in time for the event and leave as quickly as they could in fear of getting in trouble for speaking about cannabis,” Zick said. “Now we have trouble finding hotel rooms for people because people come in on Friday before the event and book all of the hotel rooms from
Wilkes-Barre to Waverly.”

People play percussion instruments on the lawn of the Everhart Museum during the Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival at Nay Aug Park in Scranton on Sunday, April 22, 2018. Christopher Dolan / Staff Photographer

The growth of the festival also has had a positive effect on local businesses, Zick noted.
“People travel from all over the place to come to this festival, and they shop in downtown Scranton as well as stop and eat at all of the local restaurants,” he added. “It is really great for the community.”
This year, organizers expect at least 15,000 people to attend.
“The event continues to grow every year, no pun intended,” Zick said.

If you go
What: Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival
When: Saturday, April 20, starting at 9 a.m.
Where: Nay Aug Park, Mulberry Street and Arthur Avenue, Scranton
Details: penncannafest.com

Contact the writer: johearn@timesshamrock.com;
570-348-9127

Sites to see

Sites to see

Enjoy natural wonders, activities at local posts during National Park Week

Enjoy the outdoors, learn some history and celebrate “America’s best idea” during the annual National Park Week.
The action happens nationwide from Saturday, April 20, through Sunday, April 28, including at the National Park Service sites in Northeast Pennsylvania. All park entrance fees are waived on April 20, and other days throughout the week will commemorate different groups and topics, such as “Wild Wednesday,” “Friendship Friday” and “BARK Ranger Day.” For more information, visit nps.gov.
Meanwhile, here’s how you can join the fun locally.

Steamtown National Historic Site
Hours:
Daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: 350 Cliff St., Scranton
Details: 570-340-5200 or nps.gov/stea

The free railroad museum and home to historical trains and related machinery has been part of the National Park Service for 33 years, and it will celebrate not only National Park Week but also National Volunteer Week to honor the people who help keep it chugging along.
This year’s park week celebrations include the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Golden Spike, the ceremonial spike that connected the Central Pacific and Union Pacific railroads to mark the completion of the United States’ first transcontinental railroad. The park also will release the seventh edition of a series of collectible trading cards and a new Steamtown Junior Ranger badge (available starting Saturday, April 20), with one day dedicated to Junior Rangers that week.
On Sunday, April 28, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., guests can check out games, activities and other information about the health benefits of the outdoors during Park RX Day. Scranton Limited short train rides also will return, and the site will offer extra tours.

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
Hours:
Most of the park is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week (check with visitors centers for specific hours)
Where: Park headquarters, 1978 River Road, Middle Smithfield Twp.
Details: 570-426-2452 or nps.gov/dewa

The recreation area and nearby Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, Shawnee, will host the annual volunteer-led cleanup of River Road on Saturday, April 27, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Safety gear, a continental breakfast, post-cleanup appreciation lunch and T-shirt (while supplies last) will be provided to volunteers, who should meet at the Shawnee River Sanctuary Pavilion on the resort’s Grand Front Lawn at 8:30 a.m. The program will take place rain or shine.
To volunteer, register at https://a.pgtb.me/sZ8MgR. For more information, contact Nicole Althouse-Garced at 570-424-4050, ext. 1408, or
marketing@shawneeinn.com.

Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River
Where: The site encompasses the upper echelon of the Delaware River; traveling from Scranton, take Interstate 81 to Route 6 East (Exit 187) through Carbondale and Honesdale to Route 652 East to Narrowsburg and New York Route 97.
Hours: River use, 24 hours a day, year-round; public river access, 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Details: 570-685-4871 or nps.gov/upde

Park visitors can hit the Delaware River for boating, rafting, fishing and other water-based fun, or stay on land for hiking. Guests also can hit up one of the area’s notable sites, including the Roebling Bridge, which is open 24 hours a day and crosses the river from Lackawaxen to Minisink Ford, New York; the Towpath Trail, which is open year-round (access the trailhead near the parking lot entrance on the New York side of the Roebling Bridge); and the Roebling Bridge Toll House, 4225 Route 97, Barryville, New York, which is open daily (weather permitting), from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Fab 5 – April 18, 2019

Fab 5 – April 18, 2019

1. Egg-cellent Easter Eggs-travaganza
Learn about eggs while celebrating Easter at Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den in the Marketplace at Steamtown, 300 Lackawanna Ave., Scranton.
The Egg-cellent Easter Eggs-travaganza will take place Saturday, April 20, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Activities, which are included in the site’s admission, will include a scavenger hunt to find hidden eggs in the animal enclosures. All participants will receive a “sweet reward.”
While there, guests also can check out some visiting animals, including rabbits and chicks, and an “egg-ucation table” to learn about eggs and the land and sea animals that lay them, and to also see baby animals up close.
Admission costs $15.95 for children 2 to 12, $18.95 for adults, and $16.95 for college student, seniors, military members, veterans and first responders. Group rates also are available.
Call 570-507-1902 or visit electriccityaquarium.com for details.

MADELINE WHITEHEAD Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead will deliver this year’s American Masters Lecture for the Lackawanna County Library System’s Library Lecture Series on Thursday, Nov. 15, in Scranton.

2. American Masters Lecture
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead will deliver the Matthew F. Flynn American Masters Lecture on Thursday, April 18, at 7 p.m.
Rescheduled from November when snow postponed the initial date, the talk — part of the Lackawanna County Library System Library Lecture Series — will take place at Scranton Cultural Center at The Masonic Temple, 420 N. Washington Ave.
Tickets are free and are available at the library system’s branches and online at eventbrite.com.
Colson won the Pulitzer as well as the National Book Award, the Carnegie Medal for Fiction, the Heartland Prize and the Arthur C. Clarke Award for his novel “The Underground Railroad,” which also was named the best book of the year by leading publications. The recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, aka a “genius” grant, Colson will sign autographs following the lecture.
For more information, visit lclshome.org or call 570-348-3003.

3. Spring Thaw Ice and Wine Festival
Kiss the cold goodbye and celebrate spring at the Spring Thaw Ice and Wine Festival.
Set for Saturday, April 20, from noon to 5 p.m. in the Ice House at Sculpted Ice Works, 311 Purdytown Turnpike, Lakeville, the event will feature drinks from Lucchi Family Wine Cellars, Malacari Winery, Deep Roots Hard Cider, Capra Collina Winery, Renegade Winery and King Cole Winery.
Tickets cost $20 in advance and $25 at the door and include a complimentary wine glass. Designated driver tickets cost $10.
For details, call 570-226-6246 or visit sculptediceworks.com.

4. Young Lion
A concert at Stage West, 301 N. Main Ave., Scranton, will raise money for the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.
Young Lion — a roots, rock and reggae group based in Stroudsburg — will perform along with local artists as a tribute to late musician George Wesley on Saturday, April 20, at 8 p.m. Doors open at 6.
Admission to the 21-and-older show costs $10, and a portion of the proceeds will go to the cancer center. Wesley, a well-known local reggae musician, battled cancer before his death in July 2016 at 62.
Visit the Facebook event page for more information.

CHRIS BARBER / Blue October will perform at the F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts Friday, April 19.

5. Blue October
The band behind hit singles “Hate Me” and “Into the Ocean” comes to Wilkes-Barre on Friday, April 19.
Presented by Times-Shamrock Communications radio station ALT 92.1, Blue October will perform at 8 p.m. at F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, 71 Public Square.
The alternative rockers have had 11 Top-40 singles in their career and watched their album “Foiled” go platinum. Their latest album, “I Hope You’re Happy,” came out in August.
Tickets cost $29.50 in advance and $32 the day of show, plus fees. For tickets, visit the box office or kirbycenter.org or call 570-826-1100.

Charlie Daniels ready to connect with fans at arena

Charlie Daniels ready to connect with fans at arena

With all the charms of musician life, the fans are the best part for Charlie Daniels.
The legendary country musician has toured and performed with his namesake band — best known for its No. 1 hit, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” — for over 50 years.
He’s a Grammy Award-winner, been inducted into Grand Ole Opry and Country Music Hall of Fame, and written books including “Never Look at the Empty Seats” and “Let’s All Make the Day Count.”
Though it’s the times on stage connecting with fans that he holds in highest regard.
“The best thing I can say is they’re going to have a good time when they come in,” Daniels said during a recent phone interview from Des Moines, Iowa, after a slew of sold-out shows. “From the time we walk out on stage, there’s a lot of things that go into it. The sequence of our songs, the pace of the show. … We really want to give the audience a great show.”
The Charlie Daniels Band will appear with country and Southern rock band Alabama on Friday, April 12, at 7 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, 255 Highland Park Blvd., Wilkes-Barre Twp., during its 50th anniversary tour.
Alabama, known for hits such as “Tennessee River” and “Dixieland Delight,” has sold a combined 75 million records worldwide. Though the band went its separate ways after a farewell tour in 2003, it reunited in 2010 and has recorded and toured ever since.

The Charlie Daniels Band, meanwhile, has toured for six decades, and fans can expect a show with lots of energy and familiar songs. With six musicians on stage, the vibe of the show is built upon the experience they’ve had together, and each person plays off of each other to create a one-of-a-kind experience.
He and the band often see familiar faces in the crowd. The band holds a special section for fans who’ve seen more than 100 shows. The “Century Club” members get prime seating as well as a commemorative belt buckle. Daniels also noted the loyal fans who make Charlie Daniels Band shows a family affair.
“You definitely see the generations coming year after year,” he said.
Even after decades of performing for and entertaining thousands of people, Daniels treats every show like it’s something special. And he wants the crowd to feel the same.
“We want them to leave talking about what a great show it was: ‘That was so good we’re going to come back next time,’” he said.

Fab 5 – April 11, 2019

Fab 5 – April 11, 2019

1. Fourth annual Buy Local Spring Fling
Head to Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple, 420 N. Washington Ave., for the fourth annual Buy Local Spring Fling Marketplace on Saturday, April 13.
The event will feature around 75 local vendors, including local businesses, artisans and wineries. The event will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission costs $2, and the first 1,000 guests will receive a free reusable shopping bag.
For more information, visit the Facebook event page, email Rachel at buylocal@sccmt.org or call 570-344-1111.

2. Third annual carpentry auction
Johnson College will hold its third annual carpentry auction benefiting the Children’s Advocacy Center of NEPA on Thursday, April 11.
The auction will take place in the carpentry shop of the college’s Woolworth Hall, 3427 N. Main Ave., Scranton. Doors open at 5 p.m. for registration and browsing, and the auction will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Preregistration is encouraged. Donations are to be made either by cash or check.
Additionally, guests can stop by the shop and view auction items on Wednesday, April 10, during regular campus hours.
For details and to preregister, visit the Facebook event page. Email Matthew Darrow at darrowma@student.johnson.edu for more information.

3. ‘In Concert’
Scranton Civic Ballet Company presents its next show, “In Concert,” on Sunday, April 14, at 2 p.m. at the Theater at North, 1539 N. Main Ave., Scranton.
“In Concert” features various excerpts from ballets portrayed by members of the senior, apprentice and junior companies. The show will be choreographed by artistic director Helen Gaus.
For tickets, visit the ballet company studio, 234 Mifflin Ave., Suite 1. Tickets also will be available at the box office on the day of the show.
For more information, call 570-343-0115.

4. ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’
The University of Scranton’s Liva Arts Company presents the musical “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” this weekend.
The all-ages show — which tells the Biblical story of Joseph, his family and his “coat of many colors” — will take place Thursday, April 11, and Friday, April 12, at 8 p.m. and Saturday, April 13, at 2 and 8 p.m. in Room 133 of the university’s Loyola Science Center.
The musical features lyrics by Tim Rice and music by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Liva is the university’s student-run musical theater troupe that draws participants from a variety of majors.
Tickets cost $5. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

5. Kris Kristofferson & the Strangers
Singer, songwriter and actor Kris Kristofferson comes to F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, 71 Public Square, Wilkes-Barre, with the Strangers on Sunday, April 14.
Doors open at 5:30 p.m., and the concert begins at 7.
The three-time Grammy winner has recorded 30 albums and appeared in more than 70 films in his more than 50-year career.
Tickets range from $35 to $75, plus fees, and are available at the box office, kirbycenter.org and 570-826-1100.