Wildwood Park’s 104 bucolic acres are home to woodland trails, manicured gardens, and the 625-seat Lucy Lockett Cabe Festival Theater. In service of the center's continuing mission to encourage lifelong learning and fertile imaginations, the expansive grounds host myriad events that marry culture and art, from annual festivals to year-round children’s education programs. Beyond artistic pursuits, visitors can simply savor the center's natural splendor by taking in the sights of the Richard C. Butler Arboretum, wending through the Carl Hunger Wildflower Glenn, or spotting ballerinas in the wild at the park’s eight-acre swan lake. The nonprofit park maintains its gardens, education projects, and other artistic hallmarks purely through help from its community, including volunteers, individual donors, and arts organizations.
Returning to the scenic Ozark Mountains for its fourth year, Wakarusa immerses festivalgoers in a weekend of natural beauty, free-spirited art, and more than 100 musicians playing on five stages. Prolific rockers Primus headline on Saturday, pouring out the thick bass lines and cutting guitar riffs that line tracks such as Jerry Was a Race Car Driver. After rocking through the '80s and '90s, and becoming a household name by performing the theme song for South Park, the influential band returns, touring on the heals of its latest effort, Green Naugahyde. Though recently without his distinctive bushy beard, reggae and hip-hop icon Matisyahu headlines on Sunday, thrilling fans with his characteristically probing lyrics. Also performing throughout the weekend, soulful pop-crafters Fitz and The Tantrums continue a meteoric rise that saw them named hardest-working band of the 2011 summer festival season by Vogue and the most attractive group of talented people anywhere by their mothers. RJD2 keeps the air filled with beats throughout Saturday night, and San Diego outfit Slightly Stoopid continues two-and-a-half decades of sprightly, reggae-infused rock Saturday and Sunday. Check out the schedule for up-to-date times.
A lengthy lineup of traditional game-day fare and a sports atmosphere captivate fans at Fox and Hound - Bailey's, where the kitchen remains open as late as its neighboring fully stocked bar. Chefs cook until the wee hours of the morning and always until the bar closes, baking Bavarian pretzel starters, crafting towers of onion rings, and preparing hand-battered chicken tenders that are cooked until they are golden brown. They blend their own seasonings to sprinkle over grilled-to-order burgers, and draw from a diverse roster of cheeses and toppings to crown their wood-oven-inspired flatbreads.
While manning the bars, bartenders tap into a stash of libations, such as UV Whipped vodka and Patron Silver tequila, to mix their specialty cocktails. To further foster a sporting ambiance, high-definition TVs glow with sports games and custom music-video playlists, and guests partake in pastimes of ump bashing, billiards, or competitive people watching.
“Days in the Orient, Nights in Arabia” utilizes the Conway Symphony Orchestra’s skilled instrument wranglers to narrate the saga of "One Thousand and One Nights" through a growing flourish of vividly orchestrated music. The melodious tale of the cultured Persian queen Scheherazade is known throughout the world, still captivating audiences who fear for the queen’s life as she crafts riveting yarns to win over the heavily preserved heart of her murderous king. The symphony's ability to weave multi-hued pictures through music brings a fresh perspective to storytelling, making this establishment a sought-after community center of entertainment. The performance features the tones and scales of Middle Eastern music, and also introduces contemporary Chinese compositions inspired by the Fujian Province for a symphonic experience that’s as globally influenced as the lunchboxes in the U.N. break room.
When Ken Goodman survived a car wreck at age 4, his parents feared that his nearly severed tongue would never speak again. After a complicated surgery and months of healing, they found he could not only speak but sing. Years later, he nabbed lead roles in musical-theater classics such as Bye Bye Birdie and The Music Man. His lengthy list of performances also includes operas, pageants, and a concert for the Austrian ambassador to the United States. These days, Ken flaunts his melodious vocals at the Vienna Theatre, the 75-seat performance space he owns with his wife, Stephanie. Here, he adds his tuneful spin to renditions of Broadway standards and folk duets with humming radiators. Nestled within the century-old Simon Mendel building, the theater is one of the few structures to survive the fire of 1928 and the man versus building tickle war of 1987.
The taste-bud ticklers at La Valentina prepare gourmet Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine from scratch, using fresh ingredients united by rave-worthy recipes. The menu edifies traditional dishes with tenets of contemporary gastronomy, resulting in enlightened edibles such as fish tacos—corn tortillas topped with grilled tilapia, spinach, and pineapple-avocado pico de gallo ($10.99)—and smoked chicken enchiladas with zesty roasted tomato sauce ($8.99). Avocado artists chop, mix, and serve guacamole ($7.99) tableside, and the back-kitchen preps heartier plates such as the 12-ounce adobo marinated rib eye ($14.99). After the last plate clears, dessert devotees can pay their respects to the sugar gods with Mexican ambrosia such as the volcano—a gooey chocolate mound with a warm fudge center, topped with vanilla ice cream and caramel ($6.49)—and flan ($3.29).