Thursday, August 28, 2003
Sparks Will FlyBUBBA SPARXXX CONCERT Who would have thought that a white boy from the podunk town of LaGrange, Georgia would become one of rap music's hottest up-and-coming artists? After Warren Anderson Mathis' football career did not pan out, he put all his energy into becoming a rap artist. In 2001, Mathis, who dubbed himself Bubba Sparxxx, released his debut album, Dark Days, Bright Nights, with legendary producer Timbaland. Now, Sparxxx is poised to release his sophomore effort, Deliverance. See him rap southern-fried style, tonight at Planet Gemini. [ST]
Doors open 8pm, show begins 11pm. Planet Gemini, 625 Cannery Row, Monterey. $10. 373-1449.
MARS VIEWING PARTY Mars reaches its nearest approach to earth in about 100,000 years tonight. Optimal viewing will occur about midnight. So brew another cup a joe and head on over to the star party at the Weaver Student Observatory. Mars, which will be viewed using a computer-controlled 14-inch telescope, will be the main attraction. But smaller telescopes will also be available for viewing star clusters, nebulae and other celestial attractions. Monterey Institute for Research in Astronomy (MIRA) docents and astronomers will guide the viewing and answer questions. [JL]
9pm. MIRA Hamming Astronomy Center, Weaver Student Observatory, 200 8th St. (corner of 2nd Ave. and 8th St. on the former Fort Ord), Marina. Free. 883-1000.
Have A Doll
NAKED BARBIES The Naked Barbies have been through a lot since they became a group in 1990. The Bay-Area group had to change their name from the Naked Barbie Dolls to the Naked Barbies because of pressure from toy manufacturer Mattel. The group has also withstood the departure of four guitarists including Dan Vickrey, who left the band to join the Counting Crows. Despite all their troubles, the band fronted by singer/songwriter Patty Spiglanin has picked up a Bammie (Bay-Area Music Award) and been described by amzmusiczine.com as having "more hooks than a Birmingham, Alabama bait-and-tackle-store." The group also performs on Saturday night. [ST]
9pm. Viva Monterey, 414 Alvarado St., Monterey. Free. 646-1415.
CALIFORNIA INDIAN MARKET Drive right on past Costco and Target on the way to the 19th Annual California Indian Market in historic San Juan Bautista. Support Native American cultures by purchasing cool gifts like Native American jewelry and Xipe Totec rugs. Entertainment will be provided by Aztec dancers and Native American drummers. The event will last all day on Saturday and Sunday. [ST]
10am. The Alameda-San Juan school lot, on Third St. across from the Windmill Market, San Juan Bautista. Donation. 623-2379.
Poets Who Know It
WEEKLY POETRY NIGHT Hot off the tongues of the Monterey slam team in the West Coast Poetry Slam Championships in Big Sur last month are rhymes for Ryan Masters' free weekly reading. Guest poets Kitty Petruccelli (an alternate member of Team Monterey) and Rubber Chicken Poetry Slam ringleader Garland Thompson provide high energy and strong words to the gathering. Just listen or bring something of your own; there may be time for open-mic. [CC]
7pm. Bookworks, 667 Lighthouse Ave., Pacific Grove. Free. 372-2242.
Come Fly With Me
EARTHBOUND FARM BUG WALK Admit it. If you were once a little girl, you probably dug in the soil, pulling on earthworms and pillbugs, until some adult told you that it was dirty and gross, and to come wash your hands. If you were once a little boy, you probably did somewhat crueler things to insects, perhaps involving a magnifying glass. But at no point did it cross your juvenile brain that bugs were good for much of anything besides stomping and squishing. Earthbound Farm's bug walk can change that Neanderthal mindset. Kids get to see first hand how insects help the soil and assist in organic farming. And, kids get to release everyone's favorite insect, the ladybug, into the fields and cheer them on as they attack aphids and the like. Afterwards, raise a glass to the farmer bugs at Earthbound's new organic kitchen. [BW]
10-11am. 7250 Carmel Valley Rd., Carmel Valley. Free. Call 625-6219 to register. www.ebfarm.com for other farm events.
Trucks and Stuff
BIG BOYS TOYS SHOW Sure boat shows are cool and car shows are neat but how 'bout a show of power tools, boats, trucks, fitness gear and just about anything else that men will try to gather in their basements and garages? Today and tomorrow, all kinds of equipment, including the Grave Digger, will be gathered up in Salinas for you to check out. If you're the kind of guy who knows the difference between Ford F150 and a Ford F350, this is the place for you. Think of it as a manifestation of the old saying, "He who dies with the most toys wins." [AS]
Call for times. Salinas Sports Complex, 1034 North Main St., Salinas. $3/advance, $5/door, free/12 and under. 775-3113.
Big Fat Greek Weekend
GREEK FESTIVAL Opa! It's the 15th annual Greek fest this Labor Day weekend. So honor the ancient Greek tradition: eat, drink, dance and party 'till the Ouzo tastes like water and dancing in a circle, yelling Opa seems like a perfectly reasonable thing to do. Besides the taverna, live music and dancing, the fun also includes Greek crafts and authentic food, like dolmades, gyros and baklava. [JL]
11am-7pm, Sat & Sun; 11am-4pm, Mon. Custom House Plaza, Alvarado St., Monterey. Free. 424-4434.
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL LABOR DAY CONCERT Starting at 10am today, the Monterey Bay Symphony will be practicing American tunes ranging from marches to Gershwin and Bernstein medleys on the lawn of the Naval Postgraduate School. At 1pm, the Defense Language Institute Navy Choir performs, then at 2pm, the Monterey Bay Symphony officially starts, then joins in with the DLI choir at 3:20pm. Food and drink for picnickers are available for purchase, while tours of Herrmann Hall, the famous old Del Monte Hotel, built in 1880 by the California railroad barons, offer a peek into the grand old style of living and its present use as a school. [BW]
10am. Herrmann Hall Lawn, Naval Postgraduate School, 1 University Circle, Monterey. Free. 656-3649.
Photo by Bob Blackwell
Valley of the World
NEW WING AT STEINBECK CENTER There are times of the year when nearly every salad in America has lettuce in it from the Salinas Valley. Truly one of Earth's most fertile places, the valley just inland from the Monterey Peninsula is stunningly productive. Now the Steinbeck Center in Oldtown Salinas has a brand new $5.2 million wing to convey the agricultural history of the area, so ably captured in the writings of John Steinbeck. In addition to interpretive displays focusing on the history of local farming, the new wing also features explanations of contemporary methods and industry. Opening day festivities include a 10am ribbon cutting ceremony, a booksigning by local authors from 11am-1pm, and wine tasting from 1-4pm. [AS]
Opening Labor Day. One Main Street, Salinas. $10.95/adults, $8.95/seniors, $7.95/ages 13-17, $5.95/ages 6-12, and free/under five. www.steinbeck.org or call 796-3833.