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Wednesday, July 30, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 77.0° F  Partly Cloudy

New

Mexican ice cream shop La Michoacana to open east-side location

La Michoacana, the Mexican ice cream treat shop at 6712 Odana Rd. that opened early this year, is looking to expand with a second location on the east side. Armida Ramos and her sister Liliana are finalizing a lease to open at 4512 E. Washington Ave., in the same strip mall with the La Hispana grocery not far from East Towne. >More
382 Pixel LineIsthmus on WORT: How a proposed MGE rate change could undermine conservation

Isthmus staff writer Joe Tarr reported on MGE's proposed rate change and its implications for energy efficiency in the June 24 issue, and discussed his story with WORT producer Dylan Brogan on that day's edition of In Our Backyard. >More
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The Paper

Inside the minds of Human Head Studios

Any seasoned gamer who's dodged missiles and firestorms in a multiplayer deathmatch knows there's a time when it's best to crouch behind cover for a few seconds, honing a careful strategy rather than charging in with CRB Vector-submachine guns blazing. It's often the difference between surviving and ending up a corpse in another player's killing spree. >More
382 Pixel LineAnnabel Lee is seduced by the spotlight

It's hard to imagine Annabel Lee ever being shy or uncertain, especially if you saw her at the Madison Area Music Awards in June. Her show-stopping performance of her single "Pray" announced her status as one of Madison's hottest up-and-coming musicians. With remarkable vocal talent and a stage presence that oozes power and sex appeal, the 28-year-old artist had the audience in the palm of her hand. >More
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El Poblano to celebrate second anniversary, new sense of identity

A few words about El Poblano Restaurant, 3737 Milwaukee St., in the parking lot of Woodman's East. Located along with Pan and Pan Bakery in the former Popeye's, El Poblano is not new; the Mexican restaurant is actually about to celebrate its second anniversary on Aug. 23 with "Luchafest 2014," featuring beer, appetizers, celebrity imitators and more. >More
 Showboat Saloon brings sanity to Wisconsin Dells

To call Wisconsin Dells a sensory assault should neither surprise nor offend anyone. Neon novelty T-shirts, amusement museums and ghost tours aren't the attractions of the subtle tourist destination. I admit I'm far more likely to visit the Dells for a coffee en route to the Twin Cities than I am to hit a waterpark. But eager vacationers and resigned visitors alike stand to be in need of a break sometime, and if you're a fan of craft beer, boy does Showboat Saloon deliver. >More
Jamming with roots-music stars at the 2014 Sugar Maple Traditional Music Festival

The Sugar Maple Traditional Music Festival is as much a pop-up community as it is a concert. When the 11th annual event comes to Lake Farm County Park Aug. 1-2, there will be performances, workshops, discussions and jam sessions that migrate to the camping area before each night ends. >More
 Gabriel Sandler sets a world record during a DJ set at Jolly Bob's

He came. He spun. He conquered. Globetrotting house and techno artist Gabriel Sandler deejayed his way to a world record at Jolly Bob's on Saturday, July 26. >More
Madison Savoyards does justice to Gilbert & Sullivan's unfairly neglected Princess Ida

Princess Ida is unusual among the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. It is, for instance, the only one inspired by the work of an author other than Gilbert himself -- Tennyson, as it happens. It is the only one by the collaborators structured in three acts. >More
 Music Theatre of Madison's Miscast challenges age, gender and race expectations with lovely singing and lots of humor

The annual performance of Miscast by Music Theatre of Madison asks questions like "Are eight year old girls with red hair and freckles the only ones who get to sing songs from Annie?" The answer, according to executive director Meghan Randolph, is no. At least once a year, the role is open to anyone with the nerve and talent to take the stage. >More
Zach Braff reflects on the messiness of his 30s in Wish I Was Here

I'm not one of Garden State's belated haters. Zach Braff's portrait of generational anomie and mid-Aughties indie-film mores was on point when it was released in 2004. But a decade's gone by, and things change. Whether Braff has changed too is another matter. His latest film, Wish I Was Here, provides some clues. >More
 A tenderhearted woman tussles with an ornery widower in And So It Goes

In the opening moments of And So It Goes, Oren Little (Michael Douglas) visits the grave of his beloved wife, who has died of cancer. This scene is supposed to humanize Oren, who is horrible to most of the people he interacts with. Unfortunately, director Rob Reiner wants us to spend 90 more minutes figuring out that deep down, Oren's a sad guy, not a bad guy. >More

THE GUIDE

Wednesday, July 30
Brent Nicastro Tamarack Studio & Gallery
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Tyler Robbins, Graham Yeager Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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Jeremiah Nelson, Paul Otteson, Oh My Love Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, 7:00pm
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Blooming Butterflies Olbrich Gardens, 10:00am
Thursday, July 31
Brent Nicastro  Tamarack Studio & Gallery
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Tyler Robbins, Graham Yeager  Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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San Fermin, Griswald  UW Memorial Union-Terrace, 9:30pm
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Central Park Sessions  Central Park, 5:00pm
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Blooming Butterflies  Olbrich Gardens, 10:00am
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American Players Theatre's "American Buffalo"  American Players Theatre, Spring Green, 7:30pm
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American Players Theatre's "The Importance of Being Earnest"  American Players Theatre, Spring Green, 7:30pm
Friday, August 1
Brent Nicastro  Tamarack Studio & Gallery
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Tyler Robbins, Graham Yeager  Overture Center-James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy
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Ariada, Honey & the 45s  UW Memorial Union-Terrace, 9:30pm
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Apothesary, Repaid in Blood  Mr. Robert's, 10:00pm
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Blooming Butterflies  Olbrich Gardens, 10:00am
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Saturday, August 2
Brent Nicastro  Tamarack Studio & Gallery

CRITICS' CHOICE

Isthmus Picks: Madison calendar for July 25-31, 2014

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

TELEVISION

R.I.P. Hercule Poirot: The detective must solve his own murder in Masterpiece Mystery!

Agatha Christie's Belgian detective Hercule Poirot (David Suchet) returns to Masterpiece Mystery! with his waxed mustache, three-piece suit and formal manner -- so formal that he even refers to himself in the third person. >More

RECREATION

Flyboarding is the new kiteboarding

"You've snowboarded or surfed before, right?" Bob Cook, instructor at Mad City Flyboards, is waving off my expressed fear of heights as he launches his jet ski. "Er, nope." >More

TELL ALL

Tell All: X-rated in public

Dear Tell All: I'm wondering why it's so difficult these days for many couples to keep private behavior private. I'm not referring to just kissing, hugging and handholding. I'm referring to such behavior as slobbering all over each other, "dirty embracing," French-kissing and other behavior bordering on lewd and lascivious conduct. >More

ISTHMUSPARENTS.COM

Mama Madison: Parental dice rolls?

Last week, in response to the county-wide Sleep Safe, Sleep Well public health campaign that encourages parents to "share the room, not the bed" with their sleeping infants, Isthmus contributor Ruth Conniff penned a lovely opinion piece in defense of bed sharing entitled "Confessions of a Co-Sleeper." >More

MADISON SNAPS

Madison Snaps: July 30, 2014

Today's image titled "summer friends" was photographed by Ryan Wisniewski. >More
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COVER

Wisconsin's hyper-partisan climate is shaping the 2014 Democratic primary for attorney general

Democrats throughout the state are calling the attorney general's office more partisan than ever. But has the position really grown more political since current Republican Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen was elected in 2006? Or have a slew of controversial issues given the impression that the focus of the state's "top cop" has changed from neutral enforcer to partisan crusader? >More
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GREAT TASTE OF THE MIDWEST

Your guide to Great Taste of the Midwest eve 2014 pre-parties and beer tastings

Madison is ascending as a destination city for craft beer enthusiasts, a status that's affirmed the second week of every August when it plays host to the Great Taste of the Midwest and a growing host of satellite celebrations. Here's your guide to the series of pre-parties known as Great Taste Eve. >More

BEER

Beer Here: Eastside APA from Next Door Brewing

Since taking on the lead brewer position at Next Door Brewing in May, Bryan Kreiter has been making subtle changes at the east-side brewpub that haven't gone unnoticed by its fans. Keeping the regulars happy has meant that Kreiter has kept up with demand for the mainstays like Wilbur (cream ale) and Sevex (English strong ale) while turning out a half-dozen new beers based on his own recipes. >More

HISTORY

Lost Madison: A Facebook page revives the city's magical past

If the number of construction crews in town is any indication, Madison is finally figuring out what it wants to be -- or at least how it wants to look -- in the 21st century. Sometimes change is excruciating, and other times we only notice it in retrospect. >More

CITIZEN DAVE

Citizen Dave: Beware the ads of August in Wisconsin's 2014 gubernatorial race

The latest Marquette Law School poll confirms what seemed like a mirage back in May when it first showed incumbent Republican Governor Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Mary Burke in a dead heat. While the basic numbers are virtually the same -- the two candidates are tied at 46% among registered voters -- the news for Burke is better. >More

NEWS

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