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Monday, December 29, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 24.0° F  Overcast
The Daily
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The Week[end]: May 24-27, 2013
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Monona Memorial Day Parade
Monona Memorial Day Parade

Madison welcomes a long holiday weekend that celebrates the most beautiful of seasons with: serious competition at the USA Ultimate College Championships; bratwurst bonanzas at the World's Largest Brat Fest, the People's Braftest, and Wurst Times; a sing-along at the Memorial Union Terrace Summer Kickoff with Rock Star Gomeroke; roadside cheering at the Madison Marathon; and, salutes to sacrifice at a series of Memorial Day observances around the Madison metro area. The calendar also includes: WisCon; productions of Gruesome Playground Injuries, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Arsonists, and Wicked; the "Help Rebecca Light Up the Stars" fundraiser show, a screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show with a performance by Human Aftertaste, and the "Geeks Do Good" benefit concert for Haiti School Project; and, more live music from Golpe Tierra, Trinidad Tripoli Steel Drum Band, Ami Saraiya & the Outcome, The Handphibians, Netherfriends, Piper Road Spring Band, Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Band, and Mighty Short Bus.


Friday 5.24

WisCon
Concourse Hotel, through May 27
Madison's world-famous science fiction convention emphasizes issues of feminism, race, gender and class, having a lot of fun along the way. There will be panel discussions, readings and appearances by guests of honor Joan Slonczewski and Jo Walton.

USA Ultimate College Championships
Reddan Soccer Park in Verona & Memorial High School, through May 27 Ultimate Frisbee players from around the country descend on Madison to battle for control of the disc. (See Sports.)

World's Largest Brat Fest
Willow Island at the Alliant Energy Center, 10 am-9 pm. Also Saturday & Sunday (10 am-9 pm) & Monday (10 am-6 pm), May 25-27 The longtime fundraiser for local charities aims to break the record of 209,376 brats consumed. Do your part! There will be brats, hot dogs and veggie franks, plus four entertainment stages and, hopefully, plenty of napkins.

Golpe Tierra
Cardinal Bar, 5 pm
Start your weekend right: with cocktails and dancing during a happy-hour set of Afro-Peruvian jazz.

Gruesome Playground Injuries
The Frequency, 6 pm. Also Saturday, May 25, 6 pm
Theatre in all the Wrong Places is a new local troupe interested in theatrical venues off the beaten track. It offers Rajiv Joseph's quirky, touching boy-meets-girl story, which follows a couple as they grow from accident-prone kids to self-destructive adults.

A Midsummer's Night Dream
Bartell Theatre, 8 pm. Also Thursday (7:30 pm) & Saturday (8 pm), May 23 & 25
Strollers Theatre presents Shakespeare's lost-in-the forest masterpiece with unconventional music, costumes, casting and scenic elements. The troupe evokes a complicated, engaging fantasy world.

The Arsonists
Bartell Theatre, 8 pm. Also Thursday (7:30 pm) & Saturday (8 pm), May 23 & 25
Mercury Players paints a convincing portrait of a small Wisconsin town in this tale of Plainfield residents trying to make sense of Ed Gein's horrific crimes in the 1950s.

Wicked
Overture Hall, 8 pm. Also Saturday (2 & 8 pm), Sunday (1 & 6:30 pm), Tuesday-Thursday (7:30 pm); through June 9
The acclaimed Wizard of Oz-inspired Broadway musical wowed audiences when it last toured through Madison. The show turns L. Frank Baum's story on its head by focusing on the witches.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show with the Human Aftertaste
Majestic Theatre, 8 pm
A Friday-night freak show is on the docket at the Majestic. First up is a screening of the cult-classic film, after which the Human Aftertaste will bewilder the crowd with silly, creepy performance art and surprisingly tuneful shock-rock.

Trinidad Tripoli Steel Drum Band
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9 pm
This group started out as a family band in 1950s Trinidad, playing reggae and Harry Belafonte songs on steel pans. After moving to the U.S. in the 1970s, they landed tour gigs with famous performers such as Liberace, and their repertoire grew to include rock, classical and calypso. No matter which genres they choose, their instruments' melodic peals sound like summer.

Ami Saraiya & the Outcome
Frequency, 10 pm
Balkan-inspired indie music gained traction in the mid-aughts thanks to gypsy punks Gogol Bordello and dreamy folksters Beirut. Saraiya and crew add heady, cabaret-style vocals and a hearty dose of magical realism, drawing praise from Flavorpill and Chicago's WBEZ. With Lion's Mouth and Rockwell Windsor Rice III.


Saturday 5.25
NOTEWORTHY: Oprah Winfrey ends 25-year run of The Oprah Winfrey Show, 2011.

People's Brat Fest
UW Library Mall, 10 am-7 pm
The alternative brat fest sprang up two years ago during the protests against Gov. Scott Walker. The kid-friendly, alcohol-free event features veggie and meat brats and bands, with all proceeds going to charity.

Terrace Summer Kickoff with Rock Star Gomeroke
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 5 pm
The Terrace's summer music and film lineup has been finalized (see Music). Get the latest info at this gathering, where you can belt out the lyrics to a favorite song as the Gomers back you up and your friends cheer you on.

Madison Marathon
Capitol Square, May 25 & 26
Even though the full marathon has been moved to November, the annual spring event lives on, featuring a kids' race around the Capitol (Saturday, 6:30 pm), a twilight 10K (Saturday, 8 pm), a half-marathon (Sunday, 7 am), and a half-marathon walk (Sunday, 7:15 am). We won't think less of you if you just do the walk. Really.

'Geeks Do Good' Benefit for Haiti School Project
Frequency, 8:30 pm
Star Wars costumes and other nerdy getups are encouraged at this Geek Pride Day party, which happens to be on the 36th anniversary of George Lucas' first space-themed blockbuster. The event is also a fundraiser for a group that's rebuilding a school destroyed by the Haitian earthquake of 2010. Performers include Chicago prog rockers Lakeside Collective and Detroit face-melters Touch the Clouds. With Deuce Bag, I Saw the Creature and SheShe.

The Handphibians
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9 pm
Community percussion ensembles, or baterias, are common in Brazil, often found near samba dancers and capoeira performers. See if the Terrace crowd gets into the groove as this local group explores rhythms from So Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and beyond.

Netherfriends
Mickey's Tavern, 10:30 pm
Though he played avant-garde indie pop at Pitchfork Fest in 2010, the artist has found a new identity as a hip-hop beat maker. (See Tour Stop.) With Asumaya and Stephanie Rearick Jr.


Sunday 5.26
NOTEWORTHY: House of Representatives' Un-American Activities Committee holds first session, 1938.

Wurst Times
High Noon Saloon & Brass Ring, 11 am-8 pm
Cosponsored by the Madison Area Music Association, the event features more than 25 local bands to help you wash down your bargain-priced brats. Proceeds go to Second Harvest Foodbank and Madison-area music education.

Help Rebecca Light Up the Stars
Electronic Theatre Controls, 3031 Pleasant View Rd., 5 pm
This celebration of Rebecca Jallings, the retiring West High School theater teacher, doubles as a fundraiser for a new lighting system for West. There will be food and performances by Anthony Cao, Nick Kaufman, Ft. Wilson Riot and Aman Alem.

Piper Road Spring Band
Harmony Bar, 5:30 pm
Though this local quintet formed during the heyday of the Grateful Dead, they take most of their cues from acoustic performers such as Bill Monroe and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. But don't be surprised if a fiddle or mandolin solo morphs into a psychedelic jam.

Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Band
Cardinal Bar, 8 pm
Special guests such as guitar guru Louka Patenaude and flutist Nic Cowles turn Castañeda's percussion-fueled sextet into a supergroup that packs an even bigger punch.

Mighty Short Bus
Great Dane-Downtown, 10 pm
After spending a decade establishing their brand of soulful, country-tinged roots-rock, this local band will undergo a metamorphosis. It begins at this show and continues into the summer, until a new group called WheelHouse emerges with a debut record and their own brand of whiskey.


Monday 5.27

Memorial Day Events
There are several chances to tip your hat to our brave American soldiers today. The Madison Veterans Council hosts a 9:30 am ceremony on the Capitol's State Street steps. Monona's Memorial Day parade begins at 10 am, going from the 5400 block of Monona Drive to Edna Taylor Parkway (via Femrite Drive). The Veterans for Peace observance is at 1 pm in James Madison Park, with speeches and music. And Fitchburg features a speaker from the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs at 1 pm at the Fitchburg Senior Center.

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