In January of 2016, Sierra Leash traveled from Humboldt to Greece to volunteer with refugees fleeing to Europe from Syria and other war-torn countries. One year later she reports, "There are over 62,000 refugees stuck in Greece awaiting asylum or relocation, often living in unsafe and unsanitary conditions." Since returning home, Leash has continued to work with and support independent volunteers and grassroots organizations in Greece, and now brings the opportunity to our own community. Rhythm for Refugees, a benefit for Syrian refugee families in Greece, takes place Thursday, Jan. 19 at the Jam, starting with an all-ages portion at 5 p.m. and 21-and-up after 9 p.m. ($5-$15 sliding).
The event features live music by Altar Tones, The Brothers Norton, Arkaingelle and Ultra Secret with early performances by DJ Rotten, State of Mind and Abba Roots. There will be guest speakers, henna art, a silent auction and space to write a note or draw a picture to be delivered to refugee camps next month. Proceeds from the event will be donated to the Shelter House Project in northern Greece. The project provides studio apartments and support for 24 families who were previously living in refugee camps, a community cultural center for all children in the area and outreach for refugees living rough on the streets of Thessaloniki.
Rhythm for Refugees is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy live music, art and community while supporting an important humanitarian cause. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, "We may have all come on different ships, but we're in the same boat now."
— Kali Cozyris
Campy black-and-white horror/sci-fi films of the '50s and '60s provide just a bit of a fright but mostly ghostly good fun. From William Castle, B-movie mogul and pioneer of the horror movie gimmick (House on Haunted Hill with Emergo! and The Tingler with Percepto!), comes 13 Ghosts (1960), a silly fright fest about a displaced family that inherits a spooky mansion, showing at the Arcata Theatre Lounge on Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. (free w/$5 food/bev purchase).
Somewhere in bowels of the mansion is the late uncle's fortune — along with 12 ghosts who need a 13th in order to free them — and a sinister lurker seeking the hidden treasure. The film's gimmick at the time of its release (Illusion-O!) was special ghost-viewing glasses — similar to the uncle's invention in the film. Castle appears in the beginning of film to explain that viewers who believe in ghosts should look through the red lens (the ghosts appeared more vivid) and skeptics should look through the blue lens (ghosts barely visible).
The film has been remastered so that the special ghost viewers aren't needed, and some versions of the film have been edited to remove the distracting USE VIEWER NOW and REMOVE VIEWER NOW text that appears on the screen. Glasses or no, there are plenty of laughable moments in this one. Catch Castle's wink to The Wizard of Oz's Margaret Hamilton (minus green face paint and maniacal cackle), who plays the mansion's housemaid, when young Buck repeatedly refers to someone in the house being a real witch.
The renowned Curtis Institute of Music, whose alumni includes Lang Lang, Samuel Barber and Leonard Bernstein, sends its future stars, performing in the Curtis Chamber Orchestra, to the Van Duzer Theatre on Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 8 p.m. ($46, $10 HSU). Treat your ears to Mozart violin concertos.
Warm up with a hot bowl of beans with friends and community at the annual Bowl of Beans Benefit on Monday, Jan. 16 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Arcata Community Center ($6). The benefit for Arcata Recreation and Arcata Elementary School celebrates the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with storytelling and music performances following the meal.
Not to brag, but during the winter months, Humboldt County's gorgeous coastal rivers boast more steelhead than anywhere else in California. It stands to reason that a three-day event held four years ago in Mad River would spawn the three-month, countywide celebration that is Humboldt Steelhead Days, making its run Jan. 1 through Mar. 21. The festival includes a fishing and photo contest, special access tours (on private, tribal and timber lands), food, fun and family and educational events. Regional happenings kick off this weekend and culminate with an awards celebration and carnival on April 1. We've reeled in some upcoming highlights here:
On Friday, Jan. 13, CalTrout gets the party started at the Eel River Kick Off Party and Opening Reception at River Lodge Conference Center from 5 to 7 p.m. (free).
A week later up north, don't miss the Mad River Kickoff Party on Friday, Jan. 20 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Mad River Brewing Company and Tap Room. There'll be live music from Cadillac Ranch, games, prizes and an auction.
Dell'Arte International Theatre presents its popular, family-friendly variety show Fish Tales 4 at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 20 and Saturday, Jan. 21 at the Carlo Theatre ($10, $5 for kids 12 and under).
And the Mad River Steelhead Expo on Saturday, Jan. 21 from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Mad River Brewing Company and Tap Room and Mad River Business Park (free) is a full day of presentations, casting workshops and seminars, games and activities for the kids.
There are plenty of events happening on the Trinity, Mad and Eel rivers, so keep an eye out in the Journal's calendar and visit www.humboldtsteelheaddays.com for more information.
New Year's resolutions don't have to be painful or mean giving something up. In fact, they're often about restoration and taking things in. Few activities replenish health more than spending time in nature. Take a look around. We are positively bursting with natural beauty. From the redwoods to the beaches to the mountains and rivers, Humboldt's ready with your remedy.
If it's been a while since you've strolled among the tall trees with your head tilted back, immersed in that beautiful balance of awe and peace, don't wait another weekend. Our spectacular forests become a bit more primeval the first Saturday of every month when the Newton B. Drury Parkway through Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park closes to motorized vehicles on Bike and Hike Day. Take advantage of the next one on Jan. 7 from sunrise to sunset (free). Bring the kids on bikes, skates or strollers. Dogs on leash are welcome, too — just not on trails.
If the beach beckons, head to the dunes to learn about the importance of protected areas with Friends of the Dunes and the Northcoast Environmental Center during Exploring Protected Areas on Land & Sea on Saturday, Jan. 7 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Ma-le'l Dunes Parking Area (free). In celebration of Underwater Parks Day, naturalist Carol Vander Meer and Marine Protected Area outreach coordinator Delia Bense-Kang will take you on a guided walk to explore the bountiful biodiversity present in our coastal dunes. Breathe in fresh air, absorb some vitamin D and work those calf muscles. R.S.V.P recommended, so call 444-1397.
Roots and blues singer-songwriter and Humboldt favorite Thad Beckman brings his trio (Danny Montgomery on drums and Gary Davidson on bass) to the Arcata Playhouse on Friday, Jan. 13 at 8 p.m. ($15) for an evening of original music. Beckman and his band also support poet Jerry Martien and guitarist Fred Neighbor on Thursday, Jan. 12 at the Playhouse at 8 p.m. ($15).
It's a drag saying goodbye to the holidays, isn't it? Thankfully, the sparkly, glitzy fun ain't over yet. Club Triangle presents Gentlemen's Glitter: A Celebration of Burlesque, Boylesque & Drag on Wednesday, Jan. 11 at 9 p.m. in Blue Lake Casino's Wave Lounge (free). Sure, it's a Wednesday night, but the 'staches and tassels are twirling for free and let's be real, you haven't settled into that post-holiday schedule yet. Plus, you don't wanna miss world famous drag king and male illusionist Spikey Van Dykey, visiting us all the way from Florida's manhandle.
The shimmering shindig is hosted by Mr. Humboldt himself, John McClurg, and features performances by Va Va Voom, Rag Doll Revue and Club Triangle favorites including Tucker Noir, Hugh Johnson, Demi Fluxx, Ophelia Cox, Jennay SeKwa, Jessica Pow, Britain SpearMe, Jamie Bondage, Fuscia Rae, Jess Dayton-Around and more.
If you're not able to catch Spikey on Wednesday, fear not: The bedazzling bad boy is back at the Jam on Saturday, Jan. 14 for an all-ages show catering to a "PG-13" audience, featuring performers of all ages and hosted by Deanie Babie and Nora Pinephrine, starting at 7 p.m. ($8) and a Masqueerade Ball for 21 and up starting at 10 p.m. ($15, $12 advance - tickets at 1/11 Gentlemen's Glitter show only).
Get out there and keep the party going just a little while longer. Again, Wednesday's show is free drag and burlesque. I don't need to tell you what a treat that is. Tip: Use the cash you saved to make it rain on these deserving performers.
The Bee Eaters buzz on stage Jan. 6 and 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Arcata Playhouse ($20, $17 advance, youth 25 and under $10, free for 12 and under). This benefit concert featuring local fiddler/cellist siblings Tashina and Tristan Clarridge, with Simon Chrisman on hammer dulcimer is a benefit to raise money for a local chap in need.
The Wedding & Event Faire on Sunday, Jan. 8 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the River Lodge Conference Center is the place to get ideas, meet caterers, photographers, planners, formal wear, decor and more for your big event ($10). There are more than 30 local vendors offering everything you need to make sure your shindig goes smoothly.