Staff Picks

Thursday, Sept. 21
Happy Tail Hour
    There’s nothing like having a beer with your best friend. But if that friend is of the furry, four-legged type, then the only place you can socialize is at home or the Longshot Tavern (which always seems to have a few dogs running around the bar). No longer, thanks to a joint venture between Louisville Metro Animal Services and the Louisville Waterfront Development Corp., who are sponsoring a pet-friendly happy hour with live music (featuring bands Satchel’s Pawn Shop and Kentucky Fried Pickin), cocktails (liquor and BBC beer) and even games for pets and humans alike. The first Happy Tail Hour is Thursday from 5-9 p.m. at the Brown-Forman Amphitheater, between the new Tumbleweed and Stoplight Liquors on the eastern edge of the park. All pets must be on a leash or in a bowl. If you’re petless but thirsty and social, there will be an adoption clinic on site as well. Watch where you step. —Sara Havens
Brown-Forman Amphitheater Lawn
Waterfront Park
Free; 5 p.m.

Sept. 21-Dec. 21
‘Tesori Italiani: Italian Treasures’
    The headquarters of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America is located in Louisville, and its members are making their presence known with a blockbuster exhibition of Italian embroidery, lace and weavings. Included in the show are examples of “casalguidi,” a type of exquisite Florentine-raised needlework, and “reticello,” a style of geometric lace. The opening reception is Thursday from 3:30-7 p.m.
    The exhibit has an accompanying seminar and slide lecture. The needlework seminar, presented by Vima deMarchi Micheli, runs Sept. 21-24 and costs $270 for EGA members and $300 for non-members. The slide lecture is also Thursday from 6-7 p.m. Bello! —Jo Anne Triplett
Embroiderers’ Guild of America Inc.
426 W. Jefferson St.
Free (suggested donation $2); 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (Mon.-Fri.)

Friday, Sept. 22
St. James Cake-Off
     “Let them eat cake!” could be the slogan for the volunteers working past years and at this year’s St. James Court Art Show, which runs Oct. 6-8. This week the show begins celebrating its 50th anniversary and honors its volunteers by having five local bakeries — A Piece of Cake, The Bakery at Sullivan University, Gallery House, Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen and Sweet Surrender — compete for best creative culinary masterpiece. These competitors will dish out the sweets to volunteers who attend. If that offer isn’t tempting enough to sway people to volunteer, the Art Show also offers free food, a parking pass and a T-shirt to volunteers interested in working the fair. —Claudia Olea
St. James Court fountain
Free; 11:30 a.m.

Friday, Sept. 22
Author Mo Willems
    Children’s book author and illustrator Mo Willems will be at Carmichael’s Friday to meet his young and old fans alike during his visit to Louisville to accept the Bluegrass Award from the Kentucky Reading Association for his book “Knuffle Bunny.” The book is a hilarious allegory that pairs the mixed media of black-and-white photography and illustration. Willems’ received a Caldecott Honor for “Knuffle Bunny,” along with his book “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus.” Willems is no stranger to awards; he won six Emmy Awards when he was a writer on “Sesame Street” from 1993-2002. The author also will give a drawing lesson (materials provided) and sign copies of his books, including his latest, “Edwina, the Dinosaur that Didn’t Know She was Extinct.” —Claudia Olea
Carmichael’s Bookstore
2720 Frankfort Ave.
Free; 7 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 22
Second Story Man plays Homecoming
    It’s always nice to get home from a tour, which is how Louisville’s Second Story Man is feeling about now, coming off an East Coast jaunt that ran 14 shows over 17 days and more than 6,000 miles. That much explains the “Homecoming” theme of Friday’s show with Louisville’s Venus Trap and Nashville’s Forget Cassettes (the latter also play an ear X-tacy in-store at 5:30 that evening). But what of the more nostalgic high-school-romance request that attendees come garbed for prom? That’s just fun. And there will be a photo booth to commemorate the grand fashion event, as well as limited CDs with some new SSM material. Don’t resist. You can’t resist. —Stephen George
The Rudyard Kipling
422 W. Oak St.
$6 ($10 for couples); 9 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 23
Gettin’ catty with Susan Sturgill
    Take it from an asthmatic who has gone to sleep every night for the past 12 years with an inhaler of Albuterol, a sense of humor and four cats. For me, Rory, Little Bear, Andy and Pumpkin are my family. Cats can be a passion, perhaps an addiction, and for many two-leggers like myself, there is no patch, pill or therapist that can change my mind. Illustrator and humorist Susan Sturgill’s book, “I’m Just a Cat Mattress,” validates the pleasure and plight of … cat people. With 27 colorful illustrations, each page turns detailed ink, savvy quotes and classic observations into a lively coffee table guide. Sturgill’s whimsical book puts the laugh track on a personal and spiritual drama regarding my animals. After all, they rescued me.
    Come out for this gathering and bring photos of your cats — they’ll be added to the book’s Web site. A portion of the book sales will benefit the Animal Care Society. —Cindy Lamb
Borders Books
4600 Shelbyville Road
Free; 2 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 23
Rush the Growler
    Not so long ago, there were no refrigerated trucks, so there was no Bud Light in stores. Louisvillians who wanted beer bought fresher, Louisville-made beer at the corner tavern and carried it home in a bucket. Fathers often sent children to fetch the brew, and if any was spilled, Dad would growl — which resulted in giving the buckets the nickname “growlers.” Some enterprising youths learned to make money by filling growlers for workers at work sites, and would string the buckets along a pole to carry as many as possible. This became known as “rushing the growler.” With Bluegrass Brewing Co. as the sponsor, the Portland Museum presents Rush the Growler, a 5K run/walk (no buckets) followed by a finish line festival. Participants will make their way through the historic Portland neighborhood, along the Riverwalk, past the K&I Railroad Bridge, to the old Portland street grid and Portland Wharf Park. At the end of the run/walk, participants will receive a free pint of BBC beer and the finish line festival will commence, with food, drink and live music from the Corn Island Band and H.O.T.S. Proceeds will go to fund Portland Museum programs. —Kevin Gibson
Portland Museum
2308 Portland Ave.
5K registration $25 (tickets to the fest $1 under 21, $3 over)
4 p.m.

Sept. 23-24
Mid-South Paranormal Convention
    The 2006 Mid-South Paranormal Convention is a star-studded event indeed, with a long list of celebs from supernatural circles, including Troy Taylor, author of more than 36 books and president of the American Ghost Society; Dave Goodwin, paranormal investigator and author of “Ghosts of Jefferson Barracks”; Melody Bussey, editor of Ghost! Magazine; and Keith Age, local ghost-hunter and host of “Spooked.” For the first time ever, the Louisville Ghost Hunters and others will be able to officially investigate the famously haunted Palace Theatre from 11 p.m. on Saturday till 6 a.m. Sunday. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door at the Holiday Inn Southwest, and will grant you access to all of the many speakers and a vendors’ area. The first 40 registrants will be able to buy a spot to go along on the Palace investigation for an additional $51. There will also be a screening of “Spooked” at the Palace Theatre to kick off the events, beginning at 7 p.m. on Saturday. I ain’t ’fraid of no ghosts — are you? —Nathan Thacher
Holiday Inn Southwest
4110 Dixie Hwy.
Louisville Palace Theatre
625 S. Fourth St.
$8 adv., $10 at door

Through Oct. 29
‘Riverspeak’ by Willie Rascoe
    Willie Rascoe works in the unusual medium of driftwood sculpture. A self-taught folk artist, he finds his wood from Lake Barkley and on this travels throughout Kentucky.
    “It’s definitely a regional thing,” Rascoe says in his artist statement. “I start out with a piece of wood and then react to it.” After analyzing the shape, he embellishes it with items such as shells, bones and metal.
    If you visit Bernheim in September, go see the new outdoor sculptures on display — “Growth” by Erin Fletcher and “The Persistence of Solitude” by Jesse Levesque. —Jo Anne Triplett
Bernheim Arboretum
State Hwy. 245
Clermont, Ky.
Free (Mon.-Fri.), $5/car (Sat.-Sun.)