As of January 1, 2016, Gapers Block has ceased publication. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
✶ Thank you for your readership and contributions over the past 12-plus years. ✶
Saturday, March 25
FitzGerald's, in Berwyn, hosts its 32nd annual American Music Festival June 29-July 3. Dozens of bands play on three stages, while concertgoers enjoy Cajun and Italian food and excellent beverages. Tickets are $30 per day at the door, with a $5 discount for the first hour of each day; children under 12 get in for $5 and can stay till 9pm. Four-day passes are available for $100 in advance or at the door. Doors open at 4:30pm today, with performances by Joel Paterson & The Modern Sounds, Sons of Fathers, Puffins, the Anna Fermin Band, Go Long Mule, Elephant Revival, Garland Jeffreys, Dave Alvin and The Guilty Ones, and Robbie Fulks as the Everly Brothers. See the schedule for times.
The Chicago Craft Beer Festival runs June 29 through July 1 at St. Michael in Old Town, 1633 N. Cleveland Ave. The event includes a street festival with music, arts and craft vendors, food and beer, as well as daily beer tastings. Admission is $5; the beer tastings are ticketed separately. The festival is open from 5pm to 10pm today. See the site for full details.
Corbett vs. Dempsey, 1120 N. Ashland Ave., 3rd floor, opens an
Nothing says summer in Chicago like partying in the street. Live music, food and that warm, fuzzy feeling of knowing your entry fee went toward a good cause. Tonight and tomorrow, 5:30-10:30pm, Madison and DesPlaines. Entry fee includes some bonuses.
Join Gapers Block readers and staff next door at the Gingerman Tavern, 3740 N. Clark St., at 6pm for a GB Get-Together and US Air Guitar pre-party! We'll enjoy drinks and conversation before heading over to the Metro at around 8:30pm for the big event. 21+
At Karaoke Idol tonight at Beauty Bar, 1444 W. Chicago Ave., karaoke stars will try to impress judges Mason Johnson, Amy Guth and Jacob Knabb -- could it be you? Sign-up to for the auditions starting at 8pm, in hopes of making it to the finals at 9pm, in which six contestants will vie for the audience and judges' approval. After the winner is determined, stick around for open-signup "shameless karaoke." The bi-monthly event will benefit a different local nonprofit each edition; this month the $5 suggested donation goes to Read/Write Library. 21+
Gapers Block presents the US Air Guitar Chicago Regional Championships are tonight at the Metro, 3730 N. Clark St. See some of the city's best air guitarists compete to represent Chicago in the national finals in Denver later this summer. The halftime show will feature a facemelting performance by defending US champion and second-rated air guitarist in the world, Chicago's own Nordic Thunder. Early bird tickets are $9.99; they'll be $15 at the door. Doors open at 8pm. 18+
The zombies at this Zombie Prom will likely be wearing less clothes than those at the one back in April. Grab your favorite undead partner, get made up and head to Vision, 640 N. Dearborn St., at 9pm. Tickets are $20 per person in advance, $25 at the door; packages are available for couples. 21+
Fellowship Of The Boobs is a Lord of the Rings, World of Warcraft, Dungeons & Dragons, Role Playing Game Burlesque. In this send-up of all things fantasy, we join Bruste Oakentits (a Dwarf), Isdra Silverbosom (an Elf), Pectus Ironchest (an Amazon Warrior) and a mysterious Fourth Companion as they journey over sea, under mountain, and right out of their semi-protective armor. See it all on Fridays at 9pm at Gorilla Tango Theater, 1919 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets are $20. 18+
Fruit Bats have their roots in Chicago with a former Old Town School of Folk Music instructor at the helm. The Sub Pop band plays delightfully appealing indie-pop with some bite in the lyrics of its sugary tunes. Fruit Bats headline Schubas, 3159 N. Southport Ave. The show is 21+, $15 and starts at 10pm.
Tonight, in case you missed him at the Book Cellar on Tuesday, Patrick Somerville reads from This Bright River at Women and Children First. It's a joint appearance with Natalie Bakopoulos, reading from The Green Shore, the tale of a family set during the 1967 Greek coup d'etat. Women and Children First, 5233 N. Clark St., 7:30pm.