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People, Places and Things by Gwen DeRu

Gwen DeRu


JOSH RITTER AND BAND at the Alabama Theatre

ALLSTARS COMEDY, MUSIC and POETRY with comedy by COMEDIAN HOLLYWOOD and COMEDIAN SAMMIE, poetry by VOICE PORTER, music by DOUGOUT AND THE PITCH HITTERS featuring MICHAEL YOUNG, Open Mic and more, at the Tide and Tiger on Graymont.  Doors open at 7.  Show starts at 8 p.m.  For more, call (205) 503-3880.

OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, every Thursday at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials, 4 p.m.  For more call (205) 326-2881.

LIVE AT STEEL, 8 p.m. with SHARRON performing and DJ CDUBB in the Mix at Steel on First Avenue at 23rd Street, downtown Birmingham. Get your live music and dance on every Thursday night.

POSITIVELY FUNNY IMPROV at the StarDome Comedy Club at 7:30 p.m.




COMEDIAN BRUCE BRUCE at the StarDome Comedy Club.

FANCY FRIDAYS, 5 p.m. featuring JILLIAN GRAY with YARBROUGH & COMPANY every Friday at Legends on 18th Street North, Downtown. Birmingham. This is an After Work Experience hosted by Keely and Tiger and catered by Chef Jones.  Call (205) 212-4406 for more.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.


HORNDOGS at the Perfect Note.



RAILROAD PARK is where the fun is Saturday.

COMEDIAN BRUCE BRUCE at the StarDome Comedy Club.

SOULFUL SATURDAY at Steel 1st and 23rd Club.

UNKNOWN LYRIC, 8 p.m. at the Perfect Note.


NADA SURF, 8 p.m. at Saturn.



SUNDAY BRUNCH AT OSCAR’S, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Museum of Art.

SLOW ART SUNDAY, 2-3 p.m. at the Birmingham Museum of Art with Marlean Wallace

COMEDIAN BRUCE BRUCE at the StarDome Comedy Club.

THEM DAMN DOGS at the Nick.



DJ REVELS at The Nick.

SENSES FAIL, 6:30 pm. At Saturn.



TIDE AND TIGER ON THE PATIO, 4 p.m. until … on Graymont across from Legion Field.

OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, 4 p.m., every Tuesday, at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials.  For more call (205) 326-2881.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.


 ANDREW BIRD, 7 p.m. at Saturn.



MASTER PASQUALE with dance classes and music at the Tide and Tiger on Graymont Avenue.

RUSSIAN CIRCLES, 8 p.m. at Saturn.




2016 EAT DRINK READ WRITE FESTIVAL – The Birmingham Public Library is hosting the annual event Saturday through Thursday. at the Central Library 2100 Park Place, downtown. 



DOUGOUT AND THE PITCHHITTERS at the Tide and Tiger, 8 p.m. , today.  DougOut and the Pitch Hitters have performed with groups from South America, Israel, Europe, and in America.  You can see them performing every Saturday at the Avondale Market. 

Tom Timko of The Horndogs
Tom Timko of The Horndogs

HORNDOGS at the Perfect Note in Hoover at 8 p.m. Friday night. The Horndogs is a funk, R&B and blues band that has played with the Tower of Power and the Average White Band.

JOSH RITTER FALL TOURJosh Ritter confirms fall tour dates supporting Jason Isbell. The dates extend Ritter’s ongoing North American tour with stops in Atlanta, Birmingham, Louisville, New Orleans, Des Moines and more. This extensive run supports Ritter’s acclaimed album, Sermon On The Rocks (Pytheas Recordings/Thirty Tigers).

UNKNOWN LYRIC (Jazz Fusion Duo) at the Perfect Note in Hoover at 8 p.m. Saturday night.  Go to www.perfectnotelinvecom for more.



DAYHIKE SATURDAY, 10 a.m. with Southeastern Outings Dayhike at the Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve.  Details: Join SEO for a moderate 4-mile hike on the trails in the 1000+-acre Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve, one of the largest in-city nature preserves in the country.  Pass remnants of old iron mining and limestone quarrying operations which took place on the mountain, have views from the overlook to see all the way to the Miller Steam Plant on the Locust Fork River on a clear day.  Bring picnic lunch and drink.  Supervised children age 8 and up welcome.  Depart 10 a.m. from the Ruffner Mountain Nature Center Pavilion.  For more information, contact Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or (205) 631-4680.

DAYHIKE SUNDAY, 1 p.m. with Southeastern Outings Sunday at the Hargis YMCA Retreat, 928 Hargis Drive, Chelsea, Alabama 35043.  Details: This is an easy 4-mile hike on trails in Shelby County off Highway 280 near Chelsea.  The area is very scenic.  Hike along a rock cliff and walk around a lovely lake.  Bring water and wear good walking shoes or boots. Dress appropriately for the weather.  Supervised children age 7 and above welcome. Depart 1 p.m. from the parking lot right beside the chapel at the Retreat.  Directions from Birmingham to the Hargis YMCA Retreat: From junction of AL Route 119 (Cahaba Valley Road) and U.S. 280 past Inverness and Brook Highland, take U.S. 280 about 7.4 miles up and over the mountain past the Wal-Mart in Chelsea and on to junction with Shelby County 39.  Turn left on Shelby County 39.  See Publix Supermarket on the right of Co. 39 at that intersection.  Drive 2/10 mile on Shelby County 39 and turn right on Shelby County 280 (old U.S. 280).  Drive a total of 1.0 miles on County 280 to the Hargis Retreat sign and turn left on Hargis Drive.  After a while you come to a fork.  Take the right fork to stay on Hargis Drive, the road to the Hargis Retreat. Drive up a hill and through the Hargis YMCA Retreat gate. Then go down hill and park in the large parking lot in front of the chapel. Total distance on Hargis Drive is about 7/10 miles. Admission is Free. For more information, contact Dan Frederick, email seoutings@bellsouth.net or (205) 631-4680.

(Photo:  Dale Earnhardt, Jr.)

Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

NASCAR COMES TO TALLADEGA SUPERSPEEDWAY – October is here! Fans are looking forward to racing at its finest at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR’s most competitive track. Six-time Talladega winner DALE EARNHARDT won’t be competing in the Alabama 500 but you can see him as part of the Fan Driver Question & Answer session with a front row vantage point in a reserved area at the start-finish line on Sunday morning, if you get the Unstricted VIP Package.  Talladega Superspeedway’s popular Unrestricted VIP Package will give fans a chance to get in the center of all the pre-race action with behind-the-scenes access for the much anticipated Chase double elimination NASCAR weekend, Oct. 21-23. The package provides fans with up-close access to the garages, pits and other exciting track activities leading up to the pivotal Chase Elimination races – fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on Saturday, Oct. 22, and the Alabama 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event on Sunday, Oct. 23. Joining Earnhardt will be Carl Edwards and defending Alabama 500 champion Joey Logano (both in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup), along with Brian Scott, Michael Annett and 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Rusty Wallace. Talladega Superspeedway’s action-packed weekend kicks off on Friday (Oct. 21) with practice sessions for both the fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola and the Alabama 500. Saturday’s schedule includes Foodland/Food Giant qualifying for both NCWTS (9:30 a.m. CDT) and NSCS (3 p.m. CDT) while the fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola gets the green flag at 12 Noon CDT. The Alabama 500 race is set for Sunday at 1 p.m. CDT.  For more information, go to www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 1-877-Go2-DEGA.

MAGIC CITY CLASSIC is October 29 in Birmingham Alabama.



BRUNCH – BRUNCH is a new event that will benefit the Urban Food Project, October 8, noon to 2 p.m. at the Social Venture in Woodlawn.



LEARN TO PLAY CHESS – West End Library hosting Learn to Play Chess classes today.  If you are a child with a desire to learn how to play chess, the West End Branch Library is hosting free classes during the month of September. “Learn to Play Chess” is 3:30 p.m., today.  West End Library is located at 1348 Tuscaloosa Ave. SW, Birmingham, AL  35211. The classes are free and open to the public.  Chess teaches a higher level of thinking skills such as the ability to visualize, analyze, and think critically.  For more information, call (205) 226-4089.

*EAT DRINK READ WRITE 2016 – The festival starts Saturday through next Friday. This year’s festival will have a nationally known chef, Bryant Terry headlining. Chef Bryant Terry is a 2015 James Beard Foundation Leadership award-winning chef, author, and food-justice activist as well as the Chef-In-Residence at San Francisco’s Museum of the African Diaspora. There will also be a Children’s Food Art, Bards & Brews Poetry Slam, Fermented & Foraged Food Panel and Literary Cocktails. Terry will present a dynamic program in which he will discuss the need for a healthy, just, and sustainable food system as well as his passion for good food. There will be stories of how jazz, reggae, and soul music have influenced Chef Terry’s cooking. This year’s Eat Drink Read Write festival is dedicated to the idea that taking a risk and seeking out adventurous foods can result in great culinary experiences. Whether it is trying a Thai restaurant located in a gas station, buying ribs that have been cooked in a 55 gallon steel drum smoker in a parking lot, or foraging for wild blackberries along an old fence line, there are countless opportunities for culinary adventure in our daily lives.


RECOVERING THE CLASSICS CONTEST AND EXHIBITION – The Birmingham Public Library Recovering the Classics contest ‘A New Look for an Old Book’ at the Central Library, 2100 Park Place downtown. To enter the contest, visit www.bplonline.org/classics. Both the exhibit and contest will run through tomorrow. The winners will be announced by Oct. 15, 2016.



THIRSTY WOMEN’S CONFERENCE – DON’T LET THE STILETTOS FOOL YOU, a three-day women’s conference is dedicated to equipping and empowering women of all ages in Montgomery starting next Thursday, 7 p.m. Pastor Yvonne Jones is Host Pastor.  For more information, call (334) 356-7660.

NO MORE VICTIMS CONFERENCE, October 7-8 at the Empowerment City Church.



ART AFTER 5 – The Birmingham Museum of Art First Thursdays has been reformatted into a new event series called Art After 5, which will take place on the first Friday of each month, beginning in October.

#BLACKGIRLS$CHANGE: THE HOBSON CITY 9, Cultivating Community and Creating Change exhibition through Friday at the Paul R. Jones Gallery, 2308 Sixth Street in Tuscaloosa.

UA/UAB STUDIO FACULTY EXHIBITION through Friday at the University of Alabama Gallery at the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, 620 Greensboro Avenue in Tuscaloosa, AL 35401. Call (205) 342-2060 for more.

“DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR & THE CHICAGO FREEDOM MOVEMENT: PHOTOGRAPHS BY BERNARD J. KILEINA Exhibition” is at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute displaying its collection of rare color photos, through December in the BCRI’s Vann Gallery.  This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Chicago Freedom Movement. These photographs are some of the only known color photographs of Dr. King in Chicago.  Bernard Kileina was a priest in Chicago that wanted to get involved in the movement, who removed his collar, picked up his camera and marched.



DISNEY DREAMERS ACADEMY is taking applications until October 31, for youth ages 13-19 that live in the United States and enrolled in high school grades 9-12. For more go to: disneydreamersacademy.com.



NAACP BIENNIAL ELECTION OF OFFICERS – The Metro Birmingham NAACP Biennial Election of officers and at-large members of the Executive Committee meetings will be held at the Birmingham Public Library, 2100 Park Place downtown, SEPTEMBER 17, 2 p.m. – Election of the Nominating Committee, OCTOBER 15, 2 p.m. – Report of Nominating Committee, petitions and Elections of Election Supervisory Committee and NOVEMBER 5, Noon – 4 p.m. – Election.  For more, call Secretary at (205) 714-5860.



AT THE TIDE AND TIGER: Every Thursday is ALLSTARS NIGHT. Check out COMEDIAN HOLLYWOOD. Hollywood is one of the best comedians around, whether performing in Hollywood or in Birmingham.  He is a comedian with characters that you may have seen but are definitely very funny. He has performed with other comedians, at various venues around the country, writes short films and so much more.

Bruce Bruce
Bruce Bruce

AT THE STARDOME: Every Thursday is Positively Funny Improv.  Check out BRUCE BRUCE.  Bruce Bruce is a name synonymous with keeping audiences rolling with laughter thanks to his captivating improv skills. Bruce’s larger than life comedic style has been showcased across the country. His wit, spontaneity and dazzling personality set him apart from other stand-up comedians. Although Bruce is known for his adult comedy, he prides himself on not using vulgarity to win a laugh. He is well known to audiences from his two-year stint of the host of BET’s “Comic View” as well as the host of BET’s “Coming to the Stage.” Bruce can currently be seen as “Big Shug” in the Lionsgate feature film ” Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector”, starring along side comedian Larry the Cable Guy.


MORE DATES: October 5 – CHRIS D’ELIA and November 9 – DREW LYNCH.  See you there!




OCTOBER 1 – JAZZ@MILES, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., at the Ross Bridge Renaissance Golf and Spa Resort Hotel.

OCTOBER 1 – FIESTA 2016- CELEBRATE YOUR FIESTA, 710 20th Street North, 12 – 8 p.m.

OCTOBER 7-8 – WEALTH BUSINESS SUMMIT, 5 p.m., at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel.

OCTOBER 8 – WALK A MILE IN MY SHOES, 9 a.m. at Alex Bradford Park located at First Avenue and 19th Street in Bessemer.

OCTOBER 10 – FEED 500, 5 p.m. at 509 19th Street North, Bessemer, Al 35020.

OCTOBER 21 – LYDIA LOVELESS at the Saturn.

OCTOBER 22-23 – TALLADEGA SUPERSPEEDWAY’S Alabama 500 and Fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola, the most anticipated NASCAR Chase Elimination races of 2016.


Well, that’s it.  Tell you more next time.

(People, Places and Things by Gwen DeRu is a weekly column. Send comments to my emails: thelewisgroup@birminghamtimes.com or gwenderu@yahoo.com.)


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