Wednesday, October 20After finally turning on your furnace last week and putting your shorts and sandals away for next year, you feel like you've thrown the towel in on warm weather as the memories of summer slowly slip away. Not so fast! Nothing says summer like ice cream, and now St. Louis is home to another cold-and-creamy purveyor. Stop by Cold Stone Creamery at the new Village at Schneithorst's (1600 South Lindbergh Boulevard; www.coldstonecreamery.com) to relive carefree summer dreams and help out charity. This little added bonus (as if ice cream needed one) is courtesy of the Kyle Turley Foundation (www. kyleturleyfoundation.com) -- the Ram plans to sign autographs from 5 to 7 p.m. during the event, which runs from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Helping kids and eating ice cream? What more do you want on a Wednesday night?
Thursday, October 21During your morning commute, you may ask yourself questions like "Is the coffeepot off?" or "Do I have deodorant on?" Hopefully, on the mornings of Thursday, October 21, and Friday, October 22, when you're on your way to Room 126 of the J.C. Penney Conference Center on the University of Missouri-St. Louis campus (1 University Boulevard), you're pondering stuff more along the lines of "What Is a City?" because that's where the Center for the Humanities hosts a conference of the same name. Beginning at 9 a.m. each day, St. Louisans can attend lectures by local and national movers and shakers. On Thursday at 12:05 p.m. hear Michael Levinson, director of BUILD St. Louis, and Kris Kleindienst, co-owner of Left Bank Books, lecture on "Community Is Our Business: The Role of Locally Owned Businesses in Neighborhood Life." Later that day, Seattleite David Sucher teaches you about the essence of city-ness (at 6 p.m.). And listen closely as a couple of UMSL's own speak about Old North St. Louis at 10:50 a.m. on Friday. The conference is free, but bring a canned good to donate; register for these and other lectures in advance at 314-516-5974.
Friday, October 22The Central West End is known for many wonderful things: nice housing, great dining, cool coffeehouses. But this city enclave is not known for being a mecca of dance culture. Sure, the CWE has Club Viva!, but as fun as a little salsa (the style of dance, not the food) is, is it really enough now that M.P. O'Reilly's has moved? Twist14 doesn't think so. Why don't you join the new gay nightclub on its opening night at 7 p.m. in the former M.P. O's space (14 Maryland Plaza; 314-367-8111)? Twist14 shares the former occupant's setup, with sports on one side and DJs on the other, but it will have a new twist. And not just in the music -- although the bar features dance music "other than techno" (there is dance music other than techno?). Welcome the new neighbors, and don't just sit in your apartment watching all the partiers come and go -- get out and join them! While one dance-club opening may not be a revolution for this fancy neighborhood, it's a start.
Saturday, October 23If you believe that behind every successful man there is a good woman, you owe it to yourself to check out ANNONYArts' production of Josephine Bonaparte: Martinique to Malmaison, a solo dance piece choreographed and performed by Beckah Voigt. Inspired by Sandra Gulland's trilogy of novels about Napoleon's wife, this dance interpretation of the life of Mrs. B. plays at the Bastian Center for the Performing Arts (5600 Oakland Avenue; 314-721-0052) at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 3 p.m. Sunday (October 22 through 31; tickets are $10 to $15). The show features an original score by Moira Smiley that draws on traditional French music of the late 1700s. Hmm, conceived by women, written by women, performed by women -- looks like the "successful man" may be superfluous, no?
Sunday, October 24We here at Night & Day Global Industries believe whole-heartedly in the word, so when the Metro Theater Company tells us it has an exciting play about literacy for kids, we're all in. José Cruz González's Salt and Pepper explores the joy and pain of learning to read through the friendship of Salt, the non-reader, and Pepper, who could work at N&DGI if she were older. It's recommended for ages seven to adult, so pack up your young readers and get to the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; 314-997-6777) for either the 1:30 or 3:30 p.m. show. Tickets are $12 to $14, and after the show you can get arty and crafty with YuCanDu (the hands-on art studio) -- or just enjoy a good book in the reading corner.
Monday, October 25Syndicated columnist Molly Ivins has thrice been a Pulitzer Prize finalist, and she'd probably hate the use of the word "thrice" in the previous clause. Ivins is a shoot-from-the-hip kinda lady; a fan of the direct, well-written sentence; and something of a partisan rabble rouser -- she did write Shrub: The Short but Happy Political Life of George W. Bush, after all. Ivins brings her uncluttered, powerful style to Webster University's Loretto-Hilton Center (130 Edgar Road; 314-968-4925) at 7:30 p.m. for a free lecture and book signing. Do you think she'll discuss the upcoming election and the recent debates? Well, she did once famously remark of Bill Clinton: "No one but a fool or a Republican ever took him for a liberal," so she'll probably have a political opinion or two to share on this year's crop of candidates.