Drinking and Golf?

What an unusual combination

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THUR 8/21

After the stock-market crash of 1929 (but before the advent of giant concrete gnomes), miniature golf courses began appearing everywhere in America. Country club memberships were beyond the means of just about everyone, but anyone with a quarter could play a round of putt-putt. Miniature golf became the way to maintain the illusion of a high life. Urban golf was within everyone's reach, and it still is. Besides, there are no filthy varmints to contend with.

In that spirit, it'll be a regular golfapalooza in Soulard tonight. Eighteen public houses will host the Second Annual Soulard Putt-Putt Pub Crawl, an evening of putting, drinking and live music from 7 p.m.-midnight.

Each establishment will sport a putting green for the night, and participants can enjoy local bands and libations as they compete for every golfer's dream -- their very own golf cart. The first hole is at Lil' Nikki's (1551 South Seventh Street) and trams will ferry competitors through the rest of the course. Tickets can be had for $10 at all Ticketmaster locations, Streetside Records and participating Soulard pubs. For more information, visit www.soulardnights.com or call 314-776-6927. Don't forget to bring two pairs of knickers (in case you get a hole in one). -- John Goddard

Livin' After Midnight
Rock 'til dawn creeps up

SAT 8/23

The nightlife ain't reserved just for the martini-and-cigar crowd; the rotgut and coffin-nail contingent likes to keep late hours, too. The Creepy Crawl (412 North Tucker Boulevard, 314-851-0919) offers this second batch of reprobates a triple bill of bands for whom it's worth staying up 'til all hours of the morning. Grande rock superstars Sullen represent the home team, while Detroit's Easy Action (featuring Jack Brannon, formerly of Negative Approach and Laughing Hyenas, and Harold Richardson of Gravitar) deliver the outlandish hardcore/blues/punk. And what do the 25 Suaves bring to the table? Manic panic, as only a two-member band can provide. Tickets cost $8, and the show starts at a very continental 10:30 p.m. -- Paul Friswold

Read Like the Wind
Cheap! Cheap! Book! Fairs!

Book lovers unite! You have nothing to lose but your social standing. Pundits tell us that nobody's reading books these days, but we know it's just a high-school thing -- the readers are out there, but they're under pressure to chat about Stripperella and Stuff magazine instead, so as not to seem too stiff or too smart. Books are the medium left out in the cold, banging on the backdoor while the Internet, cable TV, DVDs, Palms and iPods share cocoa around a fire made from worn copies of Fahrenheit 451.

Put out the fire at two monstrously big used-book fairs happening this week. The Carondelet Family YMCA Book Fair (600 Loughborough Avenue, 314-353-4960) boasts four levels of books and is open from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, August 23, through Wednesday, August 27 (Friday, August 22, is preview night, $5). Meanwhile, the Jewish Community Center (2 Millstone Campus Drive, 314-442-3281) ain't just whistlin' "Hatikvah" with 200,000 used books on sale at various times from Monday, August 25, through Monday, September 1 (with a Sunday, August 24, $6 preview night). -- Byron Kerman

Blues Healing

SUN 8/24

Two years after a ten-year-old was fatally mauled by wild dogs there, Ivory Perry Park is getting an image makeover with a free summer concert series (314-727-2309), culminating with a 6 p.m. performance by local blues diva Kim Massie.

Organized by nearby Union Avenue Christian Church -- where Massie is featured at gospel blues services -- the series finale gives a free glimpse of the singer, who packs 'em in at her weekly Beale on Broadway gigs and just made her theater début in the St. Louis Black Repertory Company's production of Damn Yankees. -- Rose Martelli

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