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Wednesday, January 28, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 31.0° F  Overcast


Beer Here: NightCall Smoked Porter from Karben4 Brewing

Four Bottle Openers! NightCall is my go-to all-around Karben4 favorite. It's just so drinkable, and it's great with food; it's not a beer you have to think too deeply about to appreciate. >More
382 Pixel LineOpinion: Pundits ponder the hole in Scott Walker's resume

Sure, he's more conservative than Chris Christie and younger and fresher than Jeb Bush, but voters, some of whom feel dismissed by intellectuals, keep electing smarty-pants candidates. >More
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The Paper

How about them high school teams?

By now, you may have recovered from witnessing arguably the most improbable NFC Championship victory in NFL history. But discussions of how the Green Bay Packers squandered a 16-0 halftime lead over the Seattle Seahawks and lost in overtime, 28-22, will continue long into the offseason. >More
382 Pixel LineThe ghosts of Richard Brown

As Richard Brown Sr. sees it, Madison is suffering from a crisis of leadership. A former Dane County supervisor, Brown says the crisis will end only when voters stop living in the past. "We're stuck in the Paul Soglin time warp," Brown says. "People have lost confidence in the mayor's office. There is no leadership there." >More
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An assured Oliver's Public House dresses up the farm-to-table scene

A farm-to-table restaurant with a serious craft cocktail program -- it's so basic a formula nowadays that it elicits yawns. In big markets, menus barely acknowledge farms anymore; it's taken for granted that a decent restaurant will source impeccably and locally. And craft cocktails are a given. >More
 Mashups on tap for MACN Week

MACN Week, the Madison Area Chefs Network's new food event to take place March 9-15, is shaping up to be a kitchen-hopping extravaganza. There are still more events to be confirmed and details to iron out, but already there's much to look forward to. >More
Yonder Mountain String Band moves forward after founder's departure

Rather than folding or caving into pressure to change their sound, remaining members Dave Johnston, Adam Aijala and co-founder Ben Kaufman began collaborating with fiddle player Allie Kral and mandolin player Jake Jolliff. >More
 Isthmus Live Sessions: Joe Pug

Folk troubadour Joe Pug's gritty, narrative songwriting invites comparison to Bob Dylan and John Prine. But the former playwriting student says he also looks to literary figures like John Steinbeck and Walt Whitman for inspiration. Pug recorded a live session at the Isthmus office on Jan. 21, a few hours before a Barrymore Theatre performance in support of the Devil Makes Three. >More
Ensemble shines in The Beautiful Dark

Erik Gernand's script is sharp and witty, providing just the right amount of biting sarcasm. The snappy dialogue propels the story while still providing the necessary time for the pieces of the plot to unfold. >More
 Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra shines on Schönberg

The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra's Friday evening concert was cunningly planned. Each half opened with unfamiliar, maybe off-putting music, followed by works of familiar composers. The orchestra was accompanied by Russian-born pianist Ilya Yakushev as soloist. >More
The wee bear gets the movie he deserves in Paddington

Bears and marmalade have gone together like Pooh and honey ever since 1958, when U.K. author Michael Bond and illustrator Peggy Fortnum published their children's book A Bear Called Paddington. Featuring the misadventures of a young bear from "darkest Peru" who finds himself living in London through no fault of his own, the Paddington books are the rarest of VYA (Very Young Adult) touchstones, the children's classic. >More
 Bradley Cooper is a revelation in Clint Eastwood's American Sniper

Clint Eastwood's second film of 2014 (Jersey Boys was released in June) is also his best film since at least 2008's Gran Torino. With it, the filmmaker revisits his long preoccupation with guns and their capabilities, although the recoil of American Sniper doesn't have the same moral reverb of Eastwood's finest work. Still, the action sequences are packed with zealous clarity and tense dynamism. >More


Wednesday, January 28
J.J. L'Heureux Madison Children's Museum
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Thomas Gaudynski, Brandon Norsted Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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Ne-Hi, Varsity, Proud Parents Frequency, The, 8:00pm
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DJ Evan Woodward Natt Spil, 10:00pm
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Melissa Falcon Field Coopers Tavern, The, 6:00pm
Thursday, January 29
J.J. L'Heureux  Madison Children's Museum
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Thomas Gaudynski, Brandon Norsted  Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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Friday, January 30
Thomas Gaudynski, Brandon Norsted  Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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J.J. L'Heureux  Madison Children's Museum
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Saturday Looks Good to Me  UW Memorial Union-Der Rathskeller, 9:00pm
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Chicago Afrobeat Project  UW Union South-The Sett, 9:00pm
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DJs Josh B. Kuhl, Andy Ash  Majestic Theatre, 9:00pm
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Cocktails in the Conservatory  Olbrich Gardens, 7:00pm
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Musical Theater Open Mic  UW Memorial Union-Fredric March Play Circle, 8:00pm
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Isthmus Picks: Madison calendar for January 22-29, 2015

Here are this week's Isthmus Picks. The Guide provides an extended listing of events in and around Madison. >More


Citizen Dave: Packers and climate change? I am happy in my denial

When someone so much as brings up the topic of football, I cut them off, change the subject or, if necessary, leave the room. Global climate change can be ignored in the same way, or so the U.S. Senate would have us believe. >More
 Citizen Dave: Let's talk about death

When patients in La Crosse started to think about end-of-life issues, costs dropped to half the national average, yet life expectancy is longer: "They want to end their stories on their own terms." >More


Isthmus on WORT: Sisterhood is Powerful

A. David Dahmer spoke with WORT producer Dylan Brogan about Madison's African American alumni sororities, who have helped generations of black women network and build careers in Madison. >More
 Isthmus on WORT: Life coaching, careers and professional development at UW-Madison

Isthmus contributor Jeff Buchanan reported on the growth of life coaching as a service and how a UW-Madison program is developing the profession in the January 8 issue, and discussed his story with WORT producer Dylan Brogan on that day's edition of In Our Backyard. >More


Tell All: Should parents tolerate their kids smoking pot?

Shrugging off a child's drug use is not acceptable behavior for a parent. >More
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When Theresa Sanders was an undergraduate at Wilberforce University during the 1960s, the struggles for racial equality and women's rights were fully under way. She saw classmates at the historically black college in Ohio board a bus for Cleveland to support Carl Stokes, the first black mayor of a major U.S. city, and take part in bra-burning ceremonies. Sanders wanted in on the action. So she joined a sorority. >More


Here's a link to pictures from the 2015 festival, along with links to vote for your favorite beer and cheese. >More
"This is unique," says Vintage brewmaster Scott Manning of his latest creation. InAbsinthia is a robust blend of English and Belgian brewing tradition, aged for nearly a half-year in an absinthe barrel. With its layers of flavor, spicy notes of licorice and alcoholic warmth, InAbsinthia isn't for everyone. Adventuresome drinkers and those who love to find rare, limited-release beers, this is one you need to try. >More
There's a lot of common beer festival DNA, no matter which one you attend. You'll see a lot of pretzel necklaces, of course, and some kind of crazy clothing accessory -- hat, novelty glasses and beer-themed socks are common. If the festival is indoors, you'll definitely get to know the ooooooh..., that half-sympathetic, half-judgmental cheer that goes up whenever a glass is dropped. So yes, you would have witnessed all these things at the Isthmus Beer and Cheese Fest (IBCF) which just wrapped up its jam-packed sixth annual iteration last Saturday. >More



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