Possessed to Create

CAMP builds a party

SAT 2/5

What's wrong with St. Louis? Here's the answer: There are too many people pointing out what's wrong with St. Louis and not enough putting fresh, constructive ideas into action. If you don't have time for action but can manage partying in the name of our city's social infrastructure, the Community Arts and Media Project (www.stlcamp.org) holds Influx 10: Possessed/Dispossessed from 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. to benefit the St. Louis Independent Media Center (www.stlimc.org). This time the semi-annual hoedown happens at the CAMP compound (3022A Cherokee Street), which, thanks to the success of previous benefits, is gradually becoming a handsome little community center in a developing area of town. Your donation at the door ($7 suggested, ages 21 and older) nets you an evening of interactive visual and performing arts, live music (Floating City, Corbeta Corbata and DJ Hershmack, among others), and independent 'zine distribution. Black Bear Bakery and Confluence magazine offer delicious baked goods and smoothies for sale, but you have to bring your own alcoholic beverages if you're the swilling type. Fun and frolic in addition to the post-orgasmic glow of helping those who not only have ideas but also make grassroots community involvement and improvement a lifestyle? Sign us up. -- John Goddard

Ocean's Millions
Captive Passage and the slave trade

Captive Passage, the new exhibit at the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; 314-746-4599 or www.mohistory.org), is an examination of the transatlantic slave trade that helped build the American empire. With more than 200 artifacts (such as the kuba hat pictured), multimedia displays and a complete sensory and physical re-creation of the brutal ships' holds that transported Africans to America (this "Middle Passage" section can be bypassed if visitors feel it's too overwhelming, in fact), Captive Passage is a powerful reminder that for many generations, the Land of the Free wasn't free for everyone. The exhibit opens Sunday, February 6, and remains up through August 14. Admission is free. -- Jedidiah Ayres

You and Your Slammin' Shadow
See who wins

WED 2/2

Well-known fact: Groundhogs work up a thick layer of fat in the warm months, seal their burrows and sleep until spring. Little-known fact: Poets also hibernate in winter -- they work on new poems and only rarely come out for Krispy Kremes. Well-known fact: If the groundhog surfaces from its burrow on February 2 and sees its shadow, six more weeks of winter follow. Little-known fact: If the poet emerges from its den on February 2 and kicks other poets' butts with clever wordplay, that poet is going to Massachusetts to represent St. Louis at the Individual World Poetry Slam! That's right: There's more at stake this year than a marmot's shadow. Join 40 of the best slam poets in St. Louis at 9 p.m. at the Schlafly Tap Room (2100 Locust Street) as they compete in Word in Motion's Individual Grand Slam. To watch, you must be 21 or older and possess $5. For more information call 314-776-6927. -- Amy Helms

He Is a Buffalo Soldier

Although you can sing along with Bob Marley's "Buffalo Soldier," you don't know anything about these brave men. Shame on you! Go down to the Museum of Westward Expansion at the Gateway Arch Thursday through Saturday (February 3 through 5) to see the Company A, Tenth Memorial Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers from Texas (pictured) re-enact how these African Americans served in the U.S. Army on the frontier and fought for their survival in the nineteenth century. The performances are free; call 314-655-1700 for exact times. -- Alison Sieloff

 
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