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Tuesday, September 23, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 47.0° F  Fair
The Paper

FEATURED STORY

Race and R Place

Tonight is the first time I've been to R Place, 1821 S. Park St., and right now, I'm conscious of being one of two white people in a crowded room. When Richard, the person I came here with tonight, finally joins the jam, I get self-conscious about being a stranger in R Place. This is the south side of Madison. It's after dark, and inside this space, I fret that I won't shake hands the right way. >More

NEWS

Volunteers for America

When John F. Kennedy said, "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country," the message caught fire almost as soon as he uttered it. Nearly 50 years later, Barack Obama's "call to service" has also spread far and wide, with a modern, high-tech twist. >More
 UW Memorial Library 'red-flagged' felon

Wayne Murphy says he's gone to UW's Memorial Library at least 10 times a year since 2001, doing research for his writing. "I looked for book publishers, writing workshops, tips from successful authors," says Murphy, who in 2008 self-published a novel called Crackin' Up under the pseudonym Swank Master. >More
 GOP challengers smell opportunity against Russ Feingold

Dave Westlake, one of the state's three announced Republican candidates for U.S. Senate, puts it this way: "I think I've got as good a chance as anybody." He doesn't. >More
 Adjudicate this! Wacky lawyer stories

The Dane County Bar Association recently asked its members to nominate "strange-but-true stories" to share at its annual Bench Bar Brawl, held April 22 at the Elk's Club. To spur recollections, it listed some possible topics, like "Most innovative legal argument." >More

OPINION & COMMENTARY

All hail the Tea Party!

Ol' Davy would recognize today's tea partiers as his spiritual descendants. I walked among them on the Capitol Square on tax day, April 15. Conservatives. Thousands of 'em, right in the heart of Madison! Pinch me! >More

MUSIC

The Dirty Shirts mine sorrow in their monthly shows

Jeff Burkhart laughs when I ask him if the Dirty Shirts have ambitions to tour in 2010. Then he says "No," without pause or apology. As Burkhart makes clear, the Dirty Shirts aren't trying to sell a million downloads or be the next big thing. They're content to be a honky-tonk happy-hour band in Madison, Wis. "We're just a bunch of friends who like to hang out and play songs," says the guitarist and songwriter. >More
 Null Device: Suspending Belief

Since forming in 1997, Null Device has bridged production and live instrumentation to show there's more to electronic music than beats per minute. >More
 The Choons: The Choons

Spring semester ends at UW-Madison this week. The Choons' new self-titled EP is the perfect tribute. After all, campus bands made a big impact on the local scene this year, and the Choons were among the most prominent. This four-song disc makes it easy to understand why. >More

AT A GLANCE

ARTS

Chazen expansion respects original structure's design

While the UW campus may seem like a minefield of endless construction, Russell Panczenko, director of the UW's Chazen Museum of Art, has his eyes on the prize: Oct. 22, 2011. That's the grand opening of the museum's expanded facility, which will effectively double the Chazen's size. >More
 Friday Night Lights gets you rooting for small-town football

Critics have gone wild over Friday Night Lights, a series about high school football in small-town Texas. Audiences haven't gone wild, but it's time to start, people. NBC has begun airing the fourth season at an unconventional time, just as 2009-10 is winding down for other dramas. >More
 Awards ceremony will salute the Bartell Theatre's best

The first Bartell Theatre Awards will be held July 10. Dubbed "the Barties," the public gala will look back over the 2009-10 season and celebrate the best of the best in an awards ceremony. >More

MOVIES

Russell Crowe's Robin Hood lacks conviction

At times Robin Hood feels like a training film for the Tea Party movement. There is much talk of tyranny and liberty. "We'll only serve a law we had a hand in making," complains an English baron at an angry outdoor meeting that features much shouting and bitterness. >More
 The Art of the Steal tells of a collection's hijacking

Don Argott's engrossing documentary makes no bones about its allegiances. The Art of the Steal bills itself, after all, as "the true story of a multibillion-dollar heist and how they got away with it." >More
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ARCHIVE

EATS

Sins of the Sconnies: A poutine recipe with bratwurst

Don't blame me for what I'm about to suggest. Blame Canada, home to Quebec's bar-food staple, poutine: a heavenly/sinful combination of fries, gravy and cheese curds, and often other toppings. It's like Canada out-Sconnied Wisconsin, and that just can't stand. >More
 Water House Foods gives travelers a reason to detour

You know those spring mornings when the sky is that unbearably bright, gorgeous blue and all the world seems to be blossoming? They make me want to get in the car and drive. Just get out there, anywhere, no destination in sight. On those trips, one often finds herself, at some point, hungry, and part of the fun is stopping at a new place to eat. If you too find yourself impetuously headed east on I-94 this spring, visit Water House Foods in Lake Mills. >More

SPORTS & RECREATION

Will it be a Big 15?

Remember when the Big Ten was an athletic league? That may have been true at one time, back when the success of a conference or college's athletic programs was measured by the wins and losses of their teams. But today, revenues determine which among the six most powerful college conferences - the Big Ten, SEC, ACC, Big East, Big 12, Pac-10 - is top dog. >More
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