17 Things to Do in Movies, Comedy, Books and Harry Potter Parties

A still from “Nikki Glaser: Perfect.” The comedian plays Punchline Thursday through Sunday. (cc.com)

Monument Lab Live: Hidden Histories and Missing Monuments @ Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts | Wednesday, October 18
Murals Arts’ provocative Monument Lab series rolls on, this time hosting TED-style talks about who gets honored and who gets left behind in history. Includes presentations from Paper Monuments (NOLA), Vashti Dubois (The Colored Girls Museum), Jarrett Drake (digital archivist), Venissa Santi (Cuban–American vocalist) and Monument Lab artists Kaitlin Pomerantz and Marisa Williamson.

Woke & Well-Read Book Club @ Big Blue Marble | Wednesday & Thursday, October 18-19
Writer Jamila Latham hosts a regular book club focusing on African-American authors. This month’s selection is The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison. Read more »

Philly Moms Speak: 19 Super Helpful Books for Parents


You know how people say parenting is lonely? It is. And while books can’t give you a hug, they can be a reassuring voice, validate that inclination you have, solve problems and make you laugh through the trench warfare that is parenting. There are tons of great (and not-so-great) tomes out there, but this set in particular was recommended by a group of trusted Philly parents. Read up.

When you are expecting …
On Becoming Babywise. I swear by this book and recommend it to anyone who asks about sleep stuff or is just generally clueless about schedules. It’s small, which I love, because some baby books are just as long (and just as left open to interpretation) as the Bible is.

The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems. Like Babywise, this book breaks down a schedule into very clear, step-by-step instructions. Admittedly, these methods aren’t for everyone — some people find them too rigid and/or are horrified by the idea of sleep training — but if you are into very specific, very clear directives, you’ll dig this one too.

The Baby Name WizardNot just helpful in terms of providing thousands of ideas, but the background info and name analysis is surprisingly fascinating — like a little anthropological dive into why certain names evoke certain feelings, and why certain names get so popular.

For once the second one comes along …
Siblings Without Rivalry. Tips and tools to ease the transition and deal with sharing and disagreements as kids age.

Read more »

44 Things to Do This Weekend

Best Coast plays with Paramore at the Tower on Friday. (Janell Shirtcliff)


DesignPhiladelphia @ all over town
The citywide DesignPhiladelphia festival is under way in earnest, with workshops and presentations pertaining to all manner of design (lighting, industrial, graphic, textile) and related areas (urban planning, architecture). On Friday, October 6, for instance, you can take a tour of NextFab — checking out their 3D printing and other cool tech. DesignPhiladelphia continues through October 14.

Terri Fridkin @ MUSE Gallery
First Friday reception for printmaker Terri Fridkin’s colorful Convergence exhibition. Runs through October 29. Read more »

Pulitzer/Oprah-Approved Writer Colson Whitehead Speaks for Free at UPenn

After years as toiling away as a “beloved but kinda underappreciated” Genius-granted author, Colson Whitehead reached superstar status last year with the best-selling The Underground Railroad. The novel uses elements of the fantastical (as in, a literal train running underground) to tell a harrowing story of escape through the American South in the early 1800s. It was spellbinding and terrifying, and my favorite book of 2016. Oprah liked it, too. So did the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award people. It’ll be adapted for TV at some point.

This Wednesday, Whitehead — who spoke to a packed Free Library crowd soon after The Underground Railroad was released — returns to Philly for a discussion entitled “Ghosts, Zombies, and the Afterlives of Slavery,” a conversation with Salamishah Tillet, associate professor of English and Africana Studies at UPenn. Tillet is the author of Sites of Slavery: Citizenship and Racial Democracy in the Post-Civil Rights Imagination, published in 2012.

Wednesday, September 27, 5-6:30 p.m. @ Harrison Auditorium, Penn Museum

11 Things to Do in Comedy, Movies, Theater, Books and more

Jen Kirkman plays the Trocadero on Saturday.
(Robyn Von Swank)

Rock and Roll Man: The Alan Freed Story @ Bucks County Playhouse | Through October 1
George Wendt (Norm!) and Alan Campbell star in the world premiere of Gary Kupper’s musical about one of the fathers of rock ’n’ roll.

Ma’ Rosa @ Prince Theater Black Box | Wednesday, September 20
Philadelphia Film Society presents a screening of Brillante Mendoza’s 2016 film as part of their Passport to World Cinema series. Jaclyn Jose won Best Actress at Cannes for her portrayal of a meth-dealing convenience store owner in the Philippines. Read more »

10 Things to Do in Movies, Books, Comedy, Theater and More

James Davis of Comedy Central’s Hood Adjacent plays Helium this week. (cc.com)

Excuse My Dust @ Good Good Comedy Theatre | Wednesday, August 30
Philly writer/”eloquent dirtbag” Jaime Fountaine hosts a night of literature and comedy featuring Joey Sweeney, Mel Bentley, Andy Futuro and Annie Paradis.

James Davis @ Helium | August 31-September 3
The very funny comedian behind Comedy Central’s Hood Adjacent plays four nights. Read more »

12 Things to Do in Comedy, Movies, Poetry, Guns, Ghosts and More

Married comedians Natasha Leggero and Moshe Kasher play the Troc on Thursday. (Robin Van Swank)

Summer Coven, Had Me a Blast @ Martha | Wednesday, August 2
The 215 Festival presents an evening of poetry readings by Alina Pleskova, Amy Saul-Zerby, Nicole Steinberg, Gina Myers and Elizabeth Scanlon (editor of The American Poetry Review).

Moshe Kasher & Natasha Leggero @ Trocadero | Thursday, August 3
A double-bill by two very funny comedians who are also married to each others. They’re calling it the Endless Honeymoon Tour. The New York Times did a funny, pretty adorbs story on the two of them recently. Read more »

14 Things to Do in Books, Comedy, Art, Movies, Storytelling, Tattoos and more

Let Me Make You a Martyr starring Marilyn Manson screens at PhilaMOCA on Thursday.

Mystery-Author Panel @ The Rosenbach | Wednesday, July 19
Philly-area crime/mystery writers Dennis Tafoya, Merry Jones and Jon McGoran will participate in a panel discussion about writing, local crimes that have inspired them and more.

Tell Me A Story @ Shot Tower Coffee | Wednesday, July 19
Hillary Rea hosts this storytelling night with the theme “Make a Splash.” Speakers include Cecily Alexandria, Max Barth, Anna Goldfarb, Ted Passon, Rina Patel, Caroline Rhoads and me, Pat Rapa. Read more »

One Thing You Should Be Penciling Into Your To-Do List Every Day (But Aren’t)

When you have a to-do list that will seemingly take you 25 hours out of a 24-hour day, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. But an interview on Science of Us with the authors of a new book chock full o’ tips for maximizing your output sheds some light on what your to-do list might be missing (hint: breaks are essential) and how working rest in can improve your productivity. Music to our ears.

Read more »

9 Things To Do in Comedy, Movies, Books, Celebricats, Queer Kickball and more.

Mystery Science Theater 3000 plays the Keswick in the not-too-distant future, this Friday A.D. (Netflix)

Kevin Hart Day & Mural Dedication @ Max’s Cheese Steaks | Thursday, July 6
Why Kevin Hart Day? Why not? And because it’s his birthday. The comedian/actor will be on hand for the dedication of the new mural painted in his likeness and honor on the side of Max’s Steaks, just a block from where Hart grew up.

215 Festival Presents: The Broken River Revue @ Johnny Brenda’s | Thursday, July 6
Author J. Robert Lennon celebrates the release of his latest novel, Broken River. Also on reading and performing will be authors Andrew Ervin and Elizabeth Scanlon, and bands I Think Like Midnight and Joey Sweeney & The Neon Grease. Read more »

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