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Calendar of Events

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Who wrote this?   Ann Arbor Observer tree logo Observer editors    community member community members
 10 a.m.  Free! 

"Taste of HDS: I Spy Kindergarten": Hebrew Day School of Ann Arbor.

  community member   < less Come explore HDS!

Preschoolers and their families are invited to join us for "I Spy Kindergarten!" Filled with exploration and fun, this event offers a hands-on opportunity to experience a day in the life of an HDS kindergarten student. All are invited to join us for this engaging morning led by our kindergarten teaching team. Please RSVP to Ali Reingold at
Hebrew Day School of Ann Arbor, 2937 Birch Hollow Drive. Free. free. 734-971-4633 X102. [map]

 10 a.m.-4 p.m.  Free! 

"Great Lakes Days": U-M Museum of Natural History.

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Jan. 25 & 26. Various Michigan water-related activities featuring a stream-table demo (showing water flow through different mediums), a talk (topic, TBA) by St. Clair-Detroit River Sturgeon for Tomorrow representative Jeremy Guc, and a reading by Deb Pilutti from her children's book, Old Rock (is not boring). For complete schedule, visit
U-M MNH, 1109 Geddes. Free. 764-0478. [map]

 11 a.m. & 3 p.m.  Free! 

Science Forum Demos: U-M Natural History Museum.

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Every Sat. & Sun., except Jan. 4 & 5. Short hands-on demos for ages 5 & up. "How to Become a Fossil" (11 a.m.). Participants handle real fossils while learning how they form and how fossil casts are made. "Life: How Do We Find It?" (3 p.m.). Participants learn about what kinds of planets might support life.
Natural History Museum, 1105 North University. Free. 764-0478. [map]

 11 a.m.-noon  Free!  Online 

Tuesday Morning Mindfulness Meditation: Open Mindfulness Meditation.

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Tuesdays, 11-Noon. Online. Please join us for this weekly free one-hour mindfulness sitting; it's appropriate for everyone, beginners and experienced meditators alike. There are two 20 minute sits, the first guided and the second silent, with discussion and questions in between. Come when you can. Experience the power of mindfulness in community!
Please message for Zoom link.
Now Online!, Saline. Free. Online. 734-276-7707.

 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, 2:30, & 3:30 p.m. 

U-M Natural History Museum Planetarium.

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Every Thurs., Sat., Sun., Jan. 20. & Feb. 18 Three audiovisual planetarium shows suitable for all ages.


The Sky Tonight (Thurs. 5:30 & 6:30 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, & 2:30 p.m.; Jan. 20, 1:30, 2:30, & 3:30 p.m.; Feb. 18, 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, & 2:30 p.m.), is an exploration of the current night sky.


Cosmic Colors (Sat., Sun., & Feb. 18, 10:30 a.m.), details the spectrum of energy we call light. Preceded by a brief star talk.


Two Small Pieces of Glass (Sat., Sun., & Feb. 18, 3:30 p.m.) shows how telescopes big & little, simple & complex, use light to work.

Various times, U-M Natural History Museum, 1105 North University. Tickets $8. 764-0478. [map]

 Noon  Free! 

"Kitchen Coaching": Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea of Meijer A2 Saline.

  community member   < less Kitchen Coaching Series

Planning to make some changes in your eating in 2020? Here's your chance to do it with the help of health coach Liza Baker -for FREE! Join us at noon every Sunday in January at Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea of Meijer A2 Saline Rd for a presentation, a grocery store tour, and time for Q+A. And between 1-2pm, Liza will be holding drop-in office hours-curious about health coaching? Stop by to chat!
Kitchen Coaching Series:
1/5 What's the best way to eat? (It's a trick question)
1/12 Label Reading 101
1/19 Going (more) plant-based
1/26 Thriving Without Certain Foods (gluten, dairy, sugar...)
Find out more about Liza Baker here:
Simply: Health Coaching
Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea of Meijer Ann Arbor Saline Rd, 3145 ANN ARBOR SALINE RD. Free. 7343698697. [map]

 noon-4 p.m. 

"ScienceFest Weekend: Science is for Everyone": Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum.

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Accessible experiments and hands-on activities, with a focus on science pioneered by scientists of diverse backgrounds.
10 a.m.-4 p.m., Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, 220 E. Ann. Admission $12.50 (members & kids under age 2, free). 995-9439. [map]

 1-4 p.m.  Free! 

"Amigurumi Cocoa Mug": Ann Arbor District Library.

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Local crafter Drew Hill demonstrates how to crochet an amigurumi mug of cocoa. Amigurumi is a Japanese art of crocheting small stuffed toys. Previous crochet experience recommended.
AADL Pittsfield, 2359 Oak Valley Dr. Free. 327-4200. [map]

 1:30 p.m.  Free! 

"Family Tree Software Choices": Genealogical Society of Washtenaw County.

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A discussion led by club member Nancy Howard. Followed by a talk led by club member Rodger Wolf on best practices for the genealogy software Family Tree Maker.
St. Joseph Mercy Women's Health Center rm. 1AB, 5305 Elliott. Free. 483-2799.

 2-3 p.m.  Free! 

"Cullen Washington Jr.: The Public Square": UMMA.

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A docent-led tour of Washington's abstract multimedia installations, which explore the artistic, spiritual, and political importance of public space.
2-3 p.m., UMMA Forum, 525 S. State. Free. 764-0395. [map]

 2 p.m.  Free! 

"Souls of Black Girls": Ypsilanti District Library & Interfaith Council (ICPJ).

  community member   < less Girl on bus.

Safely Talk About Race & Racism continuing series of film screenings and community discussions facilitated by La'Ron Williams. YDL and ICPJ host a film screening and facilitated discussion of The Souls of Black Girls. Filmmaker Daphne Valerius's award-winning documentary explores how media images of beauty undercut the self-esteem of African-American women. Valerius surveys the dominant white, light-skinned, and thin ideals of beauty that circulate in the culture, from fashion magazines to film and music videos, and talks with African-American girls and women about how these images affect the way they see themselves.
Ypsilanti District Library, 5577 Whittaker Road, Ypsilanti. Free. 734-482-4110. [map]

 2 p.m.  Free! 

The Play's the Thing: New Play Festival: Ann Arbor Civic Theatre.

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The Play's the Thing 2020 features area playwrights, including Brian Cox, Hank Greenspan, Jill Halpern, Maureen Paraventi, Kate Umstatter, as well as others. From the poignancy of the Warsaw ghettos to a comedy about the afterlife, each script offers a fresh perspective on topics both timely and timeless. Cydney Marie directs 10-minute plays on Friday at 8pm. Maegan Murphy directs full-length play by Annika Andersson on Saturday at 8pm. Sallie Love directs a series of short plays, on Sunday at 2pm. The festival is a unique collaboration between playwrights, actors and audience members. Local actors bring the scripts to life allowing playwrights to hear their work performed, often for the first time. Following the readings, audience members, actors and the director share feedback with the playwright to facilitate the play's development. All shows are performed as concert readings, scripts in hand. Tickets are free and available at the door. Donations welcomed.
Ann Arbor Civic Theatre, 322 W. Ann St. Free. 734-971-2228. [map]

 2-4 p.m. 

Winter Nature Programs: Waterloo Natural History Association.

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Jan. 26 (2-4 p.m.): "Winter Orienteering." A hike to learn to find your way through the woods in winter. Compass provided, or bring your own.

Feb. 2 (2-3:30 p.m.): "Skins, Scat, and Skulls." Presentation and demonstration walk by naturalist Dave Szczygiel, with specimens from his collection of Michigan animal skulls and skins, on how various creatures use their specialized body parts and how to recognize animal signs in the wild.

Feb. 9 (2-3 p.m.): "Creatures of the Night." Representatives from Howell Nature Center show a variety of live nocturnal animals to compare and contrast their adaptations and behavior.

Feb. 16 (2-3 p.m.): "Living with Coyotes." All adults invited to listen to Michigan DNR representative Holly Vaughn discuss the behavior and activities of this native animal.

Feb. 23 (2-3:30 p.m.): "Build Your Own Telescope." Led by local astronomy buff Meg Gower. (supplies, $8).
Various times, Eddy Discovery Center lower parking lot (except as noted), Bush Rd. (west off Pierce Rd. from I-94 exit 157), Chelsea. $2 (families, $5) except as noted. Space limited; preregistration required. $11 annual vehicle entrance fee. 475-3170.

 2 p.m. 

"James & the Giant Peach": Dexter Community Players Youth Theatre.

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Jan. 24-26. Deric Prieskorn & Joy Gee direct young actors in grades K-12 in Ken Jones, Christine Jones, and Jamey Strawn's U-M grads Benj Pasek & Justin Paul's 2010 musical adaptation of Roald Dahl's fantasy novel, a version of which Encore Musical Theater presents beginning Feb. 28 (see listing).
7 p.m. (Fri. & Sat.) & 2 p.m. (Sat. & Sun.), Copeland Auditorium, 7714 Ann Arbor St., Dexter. Tickets $10 at 726-0355. [map]

 2-3 p.m. 

"Nature Explorers: Dens, Roosts, and Nests": Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation Commission.

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Naturalist Shawn Severance leads ages 5 & 6 (with caregiver) on a hike to learn about animals' winter homes and winter survival strategies. Followed by a campfire with s'mores.
2-3 p.m., County Farm Park, 2230 Platt. Free; preregistration required at 971-6337. [map]

 2 p.m. 

"PJ Masks Save the Day Live!": EMU Convocation Center.

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A touring theater company TBA performs a lavishly staged production of Round Room Live's family-friendly musical adaptation of PJ Masks, the popular Disney Junior animated TV series about 3 young friends who are able to activate their superanimal alter-egos nightly by putting on their pajamas. Along the way they solve mysteries and learn valuable lessons. Geared for ages 2-6.
799 N. Hewitt, Ypsilanti. $29.50-$59.50 in advance at and at the door; an additional $50 to meet the cast. 487-2822. [map]

 2 p.m. 

"Roadsigns": Purple Rose Theatre Company.

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Every Wed.-Sun., Jan. 16-Mar. 14. Guy Sanville directs the world premiere of Purple Rose founder Jeff Daniels' new play, a lyrical drama about a young poet who, as he embarks on his own life's journey, encounters a rich gallery of characters on the margins of life who are each following a dream, or hoping to bump into one. Cast: David Bendena, Tom Whalen, Richard McWilliams, Rusty Mewha, Ruth Crawford, K. Edmonds, Kristin Shields, and Caitlin Cavanaugh.
8 p.m. (Thurs.-Sat.), 3 p.m. (Wed. & Sat. & Nov. 29), & 2 p.m. (Sun.), Purple Rose Theatre, 137 Park St., Chelsea. Tickets $32 (Wed.), $28 (Thurs.), $42 (Fri. eve.), $43 (weekend matinees), $46 (Sat. eve.) in advance (beginning Dec. 9) at and by phone, and (if available) at the door. Discounts available for students, seniors, teachers, military personnel, and groups. 433-7673. [map]

 2-3 p.m.  Free! 

"Stories and Images from the Last Frontier": Ann Arbor District Library.

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Photographer Howard Smith discusses the process for capturing the photos displayed in Images of Alaska.
AADL Downtown multipurpose rm., 343 S. Fifth Ave. Free. 327-4200. [map]

 2-5 p.m.  Free! 

"Wave Oscillator": Ann Arbor District Library.

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All invited to assemble and solder this small device that produces sounds electronically--an essential part of any synthesizer--to take home.
AADL Downtown Secret Lab, 343 S. Fifth Ave. Free. 327-4200. [map]

 2:15 & 8 p.m. 

"Song of Names": Michigan Theater.

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(François Girard, 2019). Drama about a Polish child violin prodigy whose disappearance remains unsolved for 40 years, until his old friend gets a clue.
Tickets: $10.50 (children under 12, students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8.50; MTF members, $8; weekdays before 6 p.m., $7.50)., 668-TIME.

 3-5 p.m.  Free! 

"Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution": Citizens' Climate Lobby.

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Screening of this documentary about recent innovation in clean energy technology. Followed by a talk by Ann Arbor sustainability staff about the city's carbon neutrality initiative and a talk by Citizen's Climate Lobby members about federal carbon pricing legislation.
3-5 p.m., AADL Westgate. Free.

 3-4 p.m.  Free! 

"In Conversation: Disability and Power with Dessa Cosma": UMMA.

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Informal gallery talk by this social justice activist, the founding director of Detroit Disability Power, in response to the works of UMMA featured artist Mari Katayama.
3-4 p.m., UMMA Irving Stenn Jr. Family Gallery, 525 S. State. Free, preregistration required at 764-0395. [map]

 3 & 8:25 p.m. 

"Parasite: Color": State Theater.

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(Bong Joon-ho, 2019). Satirical black comedy thriller. Korean, subtitles.
State Theatre. Tickets: $10 (students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8, children under 12, free)., 668-TIME. Town: Ann Arbor.

 3 p.m. 

"The Little Mermaid: The Sing-Along": Michigan Theater.

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(Ron Clements & John Musker, 1989). Animated Disney classic adapted from the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale. On-screen lyrics.
$16 (students, seniors, & veterans, $13).

 3:10 & 6 p.m. 

"Les Misérables": State Theater.

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(Ladj Ly, 2020). Premiere of this drama, inspired by the 2005 Parisian riots, about an anti-crime squad overwhelmed by simmering neighborhood tension & violence. French, subtitles.
State Theatre. Tickets: $10 (students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8, children under 12, free)., 668-TIME.

 4-7 p.m. 

Beer & Board Games: Pointless Brewery & Theatre.

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Every Sun. All invited to play board games. Some games provided; bring your own, if you like.
4-7 p.m., Pointless, 3014 Packard. Free admission (buy your own beer). (989) 455-4484. [map]

 4 - 5:30 p.m. 

Wu Style Tai Chi.

  community member   < less

Weekly Wu Style Tai Chi with Marilyn Feingold. Learn the ancient art of meditation in motion with this 'soft style' martial art emphasizing relaxation and balance. Suggested donation $5. Drop ins welcome.
Jewel Heart Tibetan Buddhist Center, 1129 Oak Valley Drive. Donation. 734-994-3387. [map]

 4 p.m.  Free! 

"Choreography of the Air": Michigan Chamber Players.

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This ad hoc ensemble of U-M music professors performs the music of Bach, Debussy, Steve Reich, and Jay Cloidt, with accompanying dance by U-M dance students.
4 p.m., U-M Moore Bldg. Britton Recital Hall (4-4:40 p.m.), Moore Hall (4:50-5:05 p.m.), Davis Studio (5:15-5:30), & Brehm Pavilion (5:50-6 p.m.), 1100 Baits. Free. 615-3204. [map]

 4 p.m. 

"Wine, Women, and Song: A Funny Thing Happened On the Way…": Kerrytown Concert House.

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Jan. 24-26, & 31 and Feb. 1. Monica Swartout-Bebow directs local woman singers in an elegant evening of jazz, classical, and cabaret songs. With pianist Tyler Driskill. Singers include Laurie Atwood, Linda Beaupré, Sue Booth, Carolyn Burnstein, Roxy Diederich, Shelley MacMillan, Gayle Martin, January Provenzola, Deanna Relyea, Emily Rogers-Driskill, Susan Shipman, Lisa Tucker-Gray, and Kathy Waugh. Wine is served. This popular event usually sells out.
8 p.m. (except Jan. 26, 4 p.m.), KCH, 415 N. Fourth Ave. Tickets $25-$75 (students, $15) in advance at 769-2999. [map]

 4:50 p.m. 

"Fantastic Fungi": Michigan Theater.

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(Louis Schwartzberg, 2019). Documentary featuring fungi's capacity to heal, sustain, and regenerate life on Earth.
Tickets: $10.50 (children under 12, students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8.50; MTF members, $8; weekdays before 6 p.m., $7.50)., 668-TIME.

 5 p.m. 

"Knives Out": Michigan Theater.

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(Rian Johnson, 2019). Drama about the investigation of the death of a patriarch of an eccentric, combative family. Chris Evans & Daniel Craig.
Tickets: $10.50 (children under 12, students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8.50; MTF members, $8; weekdays before 6 p.m., $7.50)., 668-TIME.

 5:50 p.m. 

"Jojo Rabbit": State Theater.

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(Taika Waititi, 2019). Audacious anti-hate satire about a young boy in Hitler's army who finds out his mother's hiding a Jewish girl between the walls of their home. Scarlett Johansson.
State Theatre. Tickets: $10 (students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8, children under 12, free)., 668-TIME. Town: Ann Arbor.

 6-8 p.m.  Free! 

Ann Arbor Morris.

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All invited to try this boisterous, jingly English ceremonial dance thought to be descended from the 15th-century Spanish moresca. Wear athletic shoes.
6-8 p.m., Concourse Hall, 4531 Concourse. Free. Email to confirm, or check 717-1569. [map]

 7 p.m. 

"Found Footage Fest": Michigan Theater.

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Writers Joe Pickett (The Onion) and Joe Pickett (The Colbert Report) present various VHS footage found in thrift shops & estate sales, featuring an exercise video called "Skiercise!" and segments from the 1988 Miss Junior America Wisconsin pageant.
$18 (MTF members & students, $14).

 7 p.m. 

Pinball League: Pinball Pete's.

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Every Tues. & Sun. All invited to compete in a pinball tournament of 6 games, followed by a playoff between those in the top half. Prizes.
7 p.m., Pinball Pete's, 1214 South University. $2 entry fee plus the cost of games (75 cents to $1 per game). 213-2502. [map]

 7:30 p.m. 

Kneebody: The Ark.

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This leaderless band brings one of the more unusual improvisatory mixes around. Says a New York Times reviewer: "There isn't a handy term or genre for the music that Kneebody creates. It's a band thoroughly acquainted with 1960s free-bop, 1970s jazz rock, 1990s hip-hop and postmillennial indie rock; along with classical postminimalism. (I'm leaving something out, I'm sure.) Whatever the terminology, this group has an audience." Kneebody earned a Grammy nomination for its 2009 album Twelve Songs by Charles Ives.
7:30 p.m., The Ark, 316 S. Main. $20 in advance at the Michigan Union Ticket Office ( and at the door. To charge by phone, call 763-TKTS. [map]

 7:30 p.m. 

Open Stage: Pointless Brewery & Theatre.

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All performers invited to showcase their talents.
7:30 p.m., Pointless, 3014 Packard. Pay what you can. Sign up for an 8-minute spot at (989) 455-4484. [map]

 8 p.m.  Free!  Online 

"Wine, Women, and Song: As Long As I Can Sing": Kerrytown Concert House.

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Video compilation of archival performances from this KCH tradition, featuring jazz, classical, and cabaret songs that showcase noted local singers.
Online at Free. [map]

 8:15 p.m. 

"Uncut Gems": State Theater.

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(Josh & Benny Safdie, 2019). American crime thriller.
State Theater. Tickets: $10 (students with ID, seniors age 65 & older, & U.S. veterans, $8, children under 12, free)., 668-TIME.

Canceled and Postponed Events:

 10 a.m., noon, and 2 & 4 p.m  Free! 

Canceled: U-M Natural History Museum Tours.

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Every Sat. & Sun., except Mar. 22 Thirty-minute guided tours showcasing some of the museum's beloved and new exhibits. "Museum Highlights Tour" (noon & 4 p.m.) shows a mastodon couple, the Majungasaurus, and some of the new research labs. "Wonderful World of Whales Tour" (2 p.m.) shows how whales and dolphins made the transition from land back to water.
Natural History Museum, 1105 North University. Free. 764-0478. [map]

 11:30 a.m. & 3:30 p.m.  Free! 

Canceled: Lab Chats: U-M Natural History Museum.

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Every Sat. & Sun. Short all-ages lecture-demos by museum educators in the museum atriums. "Paleo Prep Lab Chat" (11:30 a.m.) shows the tools and skills needed to prepare and cast fossils for research and display. "Biodiversity Lab Chat" (3:30 p.m.) shows how and why scientists process DNA samples from plants and animals.
11:30 a.m. & 3:30 p.m., U-M Natural History Museum, 1105 North University. Free. 764-0478. [map]


Nightspots Listings:


Ann Arbor Distilling Co.: Brennan Andes & Friends

Jazz ensemble led by Macpodz bassist Andes. [venue info]

Bel-Mark Lanes: II-V-I Orchestra

Veteran local big band, led by saxophonist David Swain, that plays late 1930s swing and 1940s R&B. 6-8 p.m. [venue info]

Chelsea Alehouse Brewery: The Wes Fritzemeier Jazz Experience

With the Chelsea ensemble of pianist Brian Brill, bassist Jed Fritzemeier, and drummer Wes Fritzemeier. Also, different guest musicians each week. [venue info]

Conor O'Neill's: Traditional Irish Session

All invited to join or listen to an instrumental jam session. [venue info]

Habitat Lounge: Rob Crozier Trio

Jazz originals and standards by this local ensemble led by bassist Rob Crozier. [venue info]

Old Town: Midwest Territory Band Rollie Tussing

Local acoustic trio led by blues-oriented vocalist and guitar virtuoso Rollie Tussing. With bassist Serge van der Voo and percussionist Jim Carey. [venue info]

Ravens Club: "Sol Jazz Sundays."

A house band--trumpeter Ingrid Racine, keyboardist Michael Malis, bassist Josef Deas, & drummer Jesse Kramer--is joined by a different guest each week. [venue info]

Ypsi Alehouse: "Celtic Jam"

Traditional Irish tunes on traditional instruments. [venue info]

Zal Gaz Grotto: "Swing Night."

Swing dancing with the Royal Garden Trio , a trio led by guitarist Brian Delaney that plays early jazz standards and Hot Club- style gypsy jazz. [venue info]


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