Wednesday, May 25If you're feeling a little frisky this evening, why not head to the Grandel Theatre (3810 Grandel Square) for Intimate Apparel, the final production of the Saint Louis Black Rep's season? As the title implies, there are plenty of undergarments to go around in Lynn Nottage's drama. Esther (Linda Kennedy) designs frilly underthings for both the high-class and the working-class (nudge, nudge) women of early-1900s New York. She has everything but a paramour, but the impending arrival of her Caribbean-based pen pal George (Erik Kilpatrick) may change that. Except George in person is much different from George on paper -- is this the same man who wrote those swoon-worthy letters? Discover the truth with Esther at 8 p.m. at this special "sneak preview" of the play, which begins in earnest Friday, May 27, and runs through June 25. Tickets are $10 to $37.50; call 314-534-3810 for more information.
Thursday, May 26Rock bands and club DJs are fun to go see, but all that booming bass and, well, rawkin' eventually take their toll on the ol' ear drums. But you love music -- what should you do? You should go to Powell Symphony Hall (718 North Grand Boulevard; 314-533-2500 or www.saintlouissymphony.org) for the Seven18 Club. This casual, happy-hour-style event, which runs from 5:30 to 8 p.m., features non-amped music by some of the members of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra at a reduced price: Tickets are only $7.18 in advance (at www.mstl.org) and $10 at the door. But what would a happy-hour concert be without food and drinks? Good news -- your admission includes treats from Juniper Grill Bistro and Wine Bar and two drink tickets! Now that's music to our ears!
Friday, May 27Everyone knows the arrival of Memorial Day signals the commencement of summer leisure time. But this rule only applies to people; if you're an animal in the Saint Louis Zoo in Forest Park (314-781-0900 or www.stlzoo.org), you'll now work extra hours on Friday and Saturday nights, thanks to the North Star Summer Zoo Evenings. It's not so bad, though. The zoo stays open till 7 p.m., but on Fridays the animals can groove to live bands (the "Jungle Boogie Concert Series," sponsored by KEZK 102.5 FM) between 5 and 7 p.m., and on Saturdays the critters enjoy extra-special enrichment activities between 5 and 5:30 p.m. The summer overtime kicks off tonight with the poppy sounds of Ultra Violets, and as always, admission to the Saint Louis Zoo is absolutely free.
Saturday, May 28So it's decided: Farmers' markets are the new thrift stores. Not because the goods are used (gross), but because the fresh produce is excellently cheap, and because going to the market is totally hip. If you don't believe us, take your vintage-jeans-clad hipster butt over to the Clayton Farmers' Market today, or any Saturday through September, to check out its embarrassment of quality riches. Live music and chefs' demonstrations? Far out. And yummy fresh omelets made with market ingredients? Way cool. North Central Avenue in downtown Clayton is closed from 8 a.m. to noon so you can shop fresh; market admission is free (and so is weekend parking). For more information call 314-645-5807.
Sunday, May 29Most art exhibits showcase a number of works, but not the show Night & Day is sending you to today. Nope, this exhibit features only one work, but it is a very special painting that took 50 years to realize and was only achieved after many interviews, sketches and notes -- don't worry, there's no half-stepping here. See such a researched piece when local artist Deacon T. Michael Kenney III unveils his painting, The Lord's Supper, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. in the west transept of the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis (4431 Lindell Boulevard; 314-373-8200 or www.cathedralstl.org). Kenney's piece offers an interesting take on the traditional "Last Supper" theme: Everyone at the table represents a different nationality. Now, isn't that special?
Monday, May 30Oh, decisions, decisions. Should one attend a third consecutive day of the Rib America Festival (at 1315 Chestnut Street; see page 29 for details)? Yes, of course. But after a quick lunch, power-walk a few blocks over toward Saint Louis Union Station, just north and west of 20th and Market streets; you'll burn off some calories and be rewarded with the annual Gypsy Caravan flea market. This fundraiser for the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra features more than 400 vendors selling everything, everything, everything under the sun. Perhaps you'll find an old medicine ball or a pair of generously-waisted pants to aid you in your current pork-bloated condition. Or maybe a pair of Jennifer Lopez-size hoop earrings to detract from your newfound ampleness. Admission to the Gypsy Caravan is $5 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and more information is available by calling the hotline at 314-286-4452 or by visiting www.gypsycaravan-stl.org.
Tuesday, May 31As shocking as it may seem considering the prodigious intellect he carries around in his bulbous dome, Mr. Night knows absolutely nothing about playing chess. Jack squat. Oh, he'll watch a game with rapt interest, but that's because he always imagines the White side to be the numerous members of prog-rock supergroups Yes and Asia, and the Black side to be the marauding forces of the late-'70s New York punk scene. That moment when Richard Hell slices through Bill Bruford's intricate defenses and topples Steve Howe always makes Mr. Night smash a bottle on the wall. But he promises to be on better behavior as he is schooled in the actual rules of the game by the members of the Soulard Chess Club. The group plays a four-round tournament starting at 6:30 p.m. at Nadine's Gin Joint and Café (1921 South 12th Street; 314-436-3045). It'll cost you $3 to play -- but nothing to join Mr. Night on the sidelines as he roots for Robert Quine and Johnny Ramone all night long.