Staff Picks

Dec. 26-Jan. 4
‘Re-Gift’ your Christmas Tree
    Jerry Seinfeld brought the term “re-gifting” into our vernacular in episode No. 98 of the hit show “Seinfeld” when dentist Tim Whatley re-gifted a Label Baby Junior given to him by Elaine. (“Love the Label Baby, baby,” was Elaine’s endorsement of the gift.) Well, our own Mayor Jerry Abramson has taken a cue from the show in requesting that Louisvillians who live in the Urban Services District leave their live Christmas trees at the curb the day after Christmas. Other residents can drop off their trees at one of the city’s four Tree-Cycling Centers (see below) Dec. 27-29 or Jan. 2-4. The trees will be recycled into mulch. For every five trees recycled, approximately 35 pounds of mulch can be created to help nourish new plant and tree growth; last year, the recycling program produced nearly 9 tons of mulch, much of which was used at Otter Creek Park and in Metro government planting beds. The Tree-Cycling Centers are open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tree vendors may recycle their unsold trees on Friday, Dec. 29, at the Hubbards Lane location. (No Label Babies, please.) —Kevin Gibson
Tree-Cycling Centers:
595 Hubbards Lane
7219 Dixie Hwy.
3528 Newburg Road
636 Meriwether Ave.
Free; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.


Dec. 27-30
Blood drives
    I saw Wendell Berry on KET recently, lamenting that some of the cautionary things he wrote 30 years ago are still applicable today. That’s the world we live in, where legitimate need expressed more than once gets received like a broken record. Case in point: The Red Cross typically sees a dip in blood donations during the holidays because people are so busy. But the need never takes a hiatus, and so, allow us to point out a few options over the next few days: At Executive West on Dec. 27-28, it’s the 28th annual Donorama, with Sullivan University chef Eugene Bell directing preparation of a hearty hot meal, plus live music and kiddie entertainment, plus free parking and child care. And you can get a free scarf, too. And on Dec. 30 in Clarksville, visit the Kroger on Lewis and Clark Parkway. It’s a more understated affair, but the warm feeling’s the same. If you ever feel a little weird during this time of overkill and largess and would like to directly help your fellow man, look no further. —Cary Stemle
Executive West
830 Phillips Lane
Noon-7 p.m. on Dec. 27-28

Kroger, 305 E. Lewis and Clark Pkwy., Clarksville
(812) 283-8416
10 a. m.-3 p.m. on Dec. 30

Thursday, Dec. 28
Elected officials to be sworn in … publicly
    Take your mind off Barack, Hillary and the (sure to be painful) governor’s race next year and consider what you’ve just done, voters of the Metro: Hizzoner Mayor Jerry Abramson, along with every recently elected official save judges and County Judge-Executive Ken Herndon (his job bears no official duties post-merger), are having a swearing-in party Thursday, and folks, you’re invited. Almost half the Metro Council will be there, along with some of those officials whose names you may recognize but, if pressed, probably couldn’t say what they do. It’s OK, we understand. There were a lot of names on the ballot this year. This would be a good opportunity to learn. —Stephen George
Louisville Marriott Downtown Ballroom
280 W. Jefferson St.
Free; 4:15 p.m.
All ages

Thursday, Dec. 28
Honey Roy
    One of the best local bar bands just feeling its oats is Roy Carter Jr.’s Honey Roy, which gigs consistently around town and, indeed, brings both da noise and da funk. With a resume that would shame the likes of most white-boy rockers, Honey Roy pulls the asses out of the seats and onto the dance floor. Stax and Motown are constant concerns, but a passel of New Orleans-style barrelhouse ballads and a clutch of originals gets the group firing on all of its cylinders. Then a few Van Morrison influences begin to arrive. From R&B classics and jam-band space-rock to righteously soulful pop, these boys can and do play almost everything. Seeing them might be the perfect Christmas hangover remedy. —Paul Kopasz
Stevie Ray’s Blues Bar
230 E. Main St.
$5; 9 p.m.

Friday, Dec. 29
Adrianne Archie
    Adrianne Archie just returned from a whirlwind tour of Europe. She only had one day off. And you thought you worked hard. So does she unwind? Please. The Louisville gospel artist is still hitting the stage. Only this time, it’s for a good cause. She is collecting warm winter clothing items that will be delivered to Hotel California, a shelter for men recovering from drug addiction. “A lot of the men come here with absolutely nothing,” Archie said. “Some don’t even have coats.”
    She asks that the items be new, not used. Gloves, hats, scarves, blankets, longjohns … “anything that helps people stay warm,” she said. —Mat Herron
St. Stephen Baptist Church
1018 S. 15th St.
Free (with clothing donation), $5 without; 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 29-31
    “Monstruppets” is a collection of stories the Squallis Puppeteers, who’ve been around since 1997, never dared tell — until now. The stories and characters came out of the Puppeteers’ Independent Series — basically Sunday assemblies over the past six months that included all kinds of people who created puppets and shared ideas. Some of those ideas grew into a story about the witches from Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.” Another became “Zuppet Moon,” Squallis’ first movie, in which the living dead, played by puppets, of course, invade Louisville. Due to the scary themes, the puppeteers have given this show a PG-13 rating and recommend it for teens and older kids. On New Year’s Eve the band Ut Gret will follow the show. —Elizabeth Kramer
Shark Tank Theater
414 Baxter Ave.
$10 (Fri.-Sat.), $15 (Sun.); 8 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 30
Seeing snowflakes
    Back in 1880, Wilson A. Bentley, then 15 and living in the rural town of Jericho, Vt., received an old microscope given from his mother. Fascinated by snowflakes, he tried to use the microscope to draw them, but they melted too fast. He later found that he could take photographs of snowflakes using a compound microscope and a bellows camera. Bentley photographed his first snowflake on Jan. 15, 1885, and went on to capture more than 5,000 images of crystals before his death in 1931. Just before he passed away, he worked with the U.S. Weather Bureau to publish “Snow Crystals,” a book illustrated with 2,500 photographs. This Saturday at the Frazier Museum, visitors can learn more about Bentley’s photographic process and recreate some of his most famous flakes. —Elizabeth Kramer
Frazier International History Museum
829 W. Main St.
Free with admission ($9 adults, $7 seniors, $6 students)
10 a.m., noon, 2 & 4 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 30
Texas Hold ’Em Tournament
    The Kentucky Center is going Vegas Saturday night as it gets invaded by a Texas Hold ’Em Tournament, titled “The Full House,” sponsored by the Fern Creek Optimists. You can bet Uncle Jesse and Joey will be donning their best poker faces as the stakes rise. The buy-in fee is $100 per person, and a $50 re-buy fee will be offered from 7-8:30 p.m., as well as a $50 add-on from 8:30-10 p.m. Other gaming events — including straight poker, 5-card stud and 7-card show down — begin at 10 p.m. Limited seating is available, and the total prize package is $15,000! Best of all, the proceeds from the tournament will benefit the Fern Creek Optimists and Stage One: The Louisville Children’s Theatre. Deal me in! —Sara Havens
The Kentucky Center
501 W. Main St.
$100 (buy-in fee); 7 p.m.-1 a.m.