Articles in this Issue

Editor's Notes
The Rear End

Decking the Halls

Christmas has demanded that I stop doing housework

Not getting a tree means you go to hell – a special kind of hell for parents where you must listen to an electronic, Fisher-Price version of Mary Had a Little Lamb on really crappy speakers. On repeat. Forever.

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Cover Art

On the Cover | Dec. 16, 2010

learn about this issue's cover art by Odin Pitts

"My medium of choice today is pen and ink. The pen I use is called a sharpie. I’ve always felt the arrangement and designs in this medium differ from other ink drawings, and therefore may have more value in a fine art sense. I want to give ..."

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Opening Shots
Thinkpieces

Field of Daydreams

I get the feeling not all parents share our laid-back approach to elementary athletics

Even before the game started, it was clear that the opposing coaches had vastly different approaches to motivating their teams. The other team’s coach – his methods reminded me of the sensei from the Cobra Kai dojo in The Karate Kid.

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Entertainment

Winter After Hours 2011

mini winter wonderland returns to Boyd Park in January

We’ve all done it. We’ve complained for four months a year about the cold. And the ice. And the bleak darkness. And the misery. But now it’s time to put all that behind us and embrace winter.

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Music

The Big New Year's Show

House of Rock slates mix of genres, plus two new bands

When everyone’s looking for a place to gather and ring in the new year, the best thing a venue can do is bring in variety – a mixture of acts that can appeal to a big cross-section of our music-loving public.

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Orfield & Perry

Sue Orfield collaborations return with Mike Perry show

As a self-proclaimed experimental band, it’s only fitting that the Sue Orfield Band should look beyond their four members to increase the eclecticism and evade any genre thrown their way.

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Reason One

Rice Lake rockers infiltrate Eau Claire

The hard rock group Reason One has been around for several years – opening for bands like CCR, Nazareth, and Eddie Money – but recently took on new members, a new sound, and extended its roots to the Chippewa Valley.

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Words

Yare' Darkness Bound

local author releases first book in fantasy trilogy

“I had this folder full of ideas, and this one just kind of moved to the forefront over time. I decided to just finally write it.”– writer Travis Ludvigson

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Visual Art
Cinema

Fifth Found Footage

infamous VHS series releases new edition, plans tour

Between their prominent role in Winnebago Man and a new regular feature for The Onion, is there anyone who doesn’t know about the Found Footage Festival at this point? Really?

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Local Look

Amping It Up

Altoona’s Phish Haus youth center focuses on music

Just behind the tennis courts in Altoona City Park, an unassuming rectangle-of-a-building has been given a name and some fresh coats of dark green paint. The Phish Haus – a reincarnation of a youth arts center that expired in 1996 – is back.

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Thanks for Asking | Dec. 16, 2010

our local jack-of-all-facts tells you how it is

Thanks for asking! You’re right: easily the smallest house in Eau Claire. Easily. I bet it’s not 200 square feet. It originally sat in the woods between Rock Falls and Meridean.

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Rumblings | Reaching for the Star Farm

Fall Creek farmland hopes to house self-sustaining commune

Raise your hand if one of the following applies: you garden, raise chickens, make a point to buy local, and/or take time regularly to connect with nature.

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Food / Drink

Beyond Chocolate

Obsession Chocolates explodes into new location

After 20 months of extensive renovations, Obsession Chocolates has leapt onto the Eau Claire café scene – and brought their artistic chocolates with them. The space at 18 S. Barstow ...

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Smiling Moose Deli

Colorado sandwich shop opens in Phoenix Park

Phoenix Park scores again. The downtown area, with its scenic riverside property and stylish new architecture, recently welcomed a new deli to the neighborhood.

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Recreation

Pedal Like Hell

local cyclist brings popular race event to Valley bars

“The races have become an international phenomenon in recent years, but until recently there was a void in Wisconsin for people interested in giving them a shot.”

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Special Sections

The Driven Snow

a local winter memory

I desperately held on to my aunt, simultaneously trying to stay on the back of the swerving snowmobile and hoping to keep my lunch down. Something was wrong ...

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Over the Hill and Still Skiing

a local winter memory

As a kid, my idea of a great way to spend a winter afternoon consisted of curling up behind the couch with a handful of cookies and a volume or two of the World Book Encyclopedia.

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Repetition Made New

A friend loans me some snowshoes and I learn what our ancestors had discovered some 4,000 years ago. I float with ease across the snow, leaving a wake of large duck foot impressions behind me.

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Life Inside a Snow Globe

Snowflakes were so big that even a 3 year-old atop his dad’s shoulders could throw back his head and catch them in his mouth. It’s the closest I’ve come to feeling the tranquility of life inside a snow globe.

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The Snow Architects

When I was young and it snowed, my older brother and I became the Greatest Snow Architects Under the Age of 10. You may have heard of our greatness.

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Other Stuff