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    Happy Happy Merry Merry from Eureka Springs nestled splendidly in the Ozark Mountains of Northwest Arkansas!  An oasis of art, music, healing spas,  and eclectic shops awaits the visitors of our Victorian village. There is much to do, but also lots of space to “not do” if that is what your spirit screams out for.  For about six years I have been writing this column, Eureka!, and each November I can’t help but relay how gorgeous the river, trees, and lakes look at this time trimmed in golden leaves with visiting bald eagles roosting on the stark riverbank Sycamores. Once upon a time, when Christian and I moved here from North Little Rock in the late 90’s, we enjoyed the slower pace that came along with the falling temperatures. However, the music scene has evolved to a more year-round rhythm that suits me just fine too. As long as change is positive, I embrace it, you know?

Chelsea’s Corner Pub Hosts NF’s 30th Anniversary Party
    Chelsea’s is an entertainment icon on the map of Eureka Springs, perpetual party occurring no matter the season. Nightflying is an entertainment information icon for Arkansas and it’s neighbors in print form, and for all of planet Earth via  www.nightflying.com! Icon celebrates icon on Friday, November 26, 2010 when the folks at Chelsea’s graciously host a party celebrating 30 Years of Peter Read and friends leading the world to musical amusement. This will be the first time Peter Read has ever had an anniversary party in our little town as well as the Eureka Springs debut for The Shwag, an incredible Grateful Dead tribute band.  Also, this party is on the night after Thanksgiving, traditionally one of the biggest party nights of the year at Chelsea’s. Each year on the night after Thanksgiving, the natives of Eureka Springs get out with old friends for some dancing and carrying on. 
    Homecoming + NF 30th Anniversary Party = Big Fun! 
    Brick Fields will kick off the night of music at 7 pm. I get the opportunity to sing the praises of Nightflying and Peter Read myself at 8, when my buddies and I take the stage as The Ariels. Next up is Ozark Blues Society leader, ‘Lectric Liz Lottmann & Friends from Fayetteville area, followed by Joey Farr & The Fuggins Wheat Band. The Shwag will rock us until last call when we will all crawl home to our beds to dream about the fantastic evening! 30th Anniversary Nightflying T’s will be available for purchase, as well as CD’s and other fun stuff. Don’t miss it!
    More fun music at Chelsea’s in the upcoming weeks includes Mountain Sprout, Ouchita Band, Earl & Them, Eoff Brothers, The Prohibition Party (celebrating the the end to Carry Nation’s historic Tirade), Blue Moon, MSG, Lyle Strickland, Randy Hayes, Electric Rag, and a special New Year’s Eve appearance by Patrick Sweany! 

    New Delhi continues to honor the music of Brick Fields each weekend on Friday’s, Saturday afternoons, and the very popular Gospel Sunday Brunch.  Jerry Jones hosts an Open Jam each Wednesday night for those of you desiring to get out and share some tunes or listen.  Then Jerry joins with his buddy, Singer Songwriter and guitar-player, Stevie Tombstone on Thursday evenings.  Throughout the weekend enjoy entertainment from folks like Mountain Sprout, Dasanni, Automatic Duo, Supe Granada (founding member of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils), and Big Bad Gina with no cover charge.

    Jack’s Place and Jack’s Center Stage is both a friendly neighborhood bar with a cool little karaoke stage on one side and a classic live music 2 level dance venue complete with big TV’s, Wii games, and pool table on the other. Each Wednesday night, Jeff Lee of the band Blue Moon, hosts an open electric jam at Jack’s Center Stage.  Rock out your own songs or jam with other special guests. Jack is bringing Joplin-based Beneath the Surface very soon and Chad Emmerit Band will be on hand over Thanksgiving weekend providing the motivation to dance off the extra helping of stuffing you had. Then on Saturday, December 4th, attend the “Party of the Year” with the incredible sounds of Yao Angelo & Ozakwaaba! Advance tickets are just $5, or at the door $7. That should be a great time!

    Squid & Whale makes sure that something enticing is happening each of the 7 days a week that their doors are open. I suspect that the owners are musically addicted and keep that place open to feed their habit, because they often have 2 or three acts a night on deck. Just ahead they have Snake Fighter, Alchemy From Ashes, The Paperclips, Zack Bramhall & Seth Freeman (which has just got to be a spine-tingling combination…), Blue Fiddle, Mountain Sprout, Eric Sommer, Black Water, and Dayton Waters. The “Rogerpalooza” benefitting Mr. Music Roger Jones on December 18th is still in the works, but have no doubt that the night will feature some fantastic music. Yao Angelo & Ozakwaaba will dance your socks off at the Squid & Whale’s New Year’s Eve Party.
    Caribe Restaurante sizzles with hot scrumptious food and music on these chilly nights. KJ welcomes Jeremiah’s Call in November, and Stevie Tombstone and Guests ring in 2011 with an entire New Year’s Weekend of tunes for you. By the way, Stevie Tombstone has some fantastic CD’s that you should get your hands on. They are each the kind that go into you car’s player and stay in for 3 weeks, because you haven’t heard enough of them yet. Put Stevie T CD’s on your Christmas wish list, whether you’ve been naughty or nice. 

    The Lumberyard Saloon is open with live music on the weekends.  A special performance by Fossils of Ancient Robots on Saturday, November 27th is a not-to-be-missed situation. Get a nap after that massive NF Anniversary Party on Friday, eat some Thanksgiving leftovers, and get over to the Lumberyard for this spectacular diversion from reality. Fossils of Ancient Robots are an experience that I find hard to describe, but their music is multi-generationally pleasing and ahead of its time. Check them out on My Space and FaceBook for a sample, but you have got to be there to really get it.

 Eureka Springs Christmas Festivities...
    The sights and sounds of the holiday season have already begun in Eureka Springs with lights and tinsel in the shop windows, hanging from the lampposts, and glitzing up the city parks. The display will charm any Scrooge into a Tiny Tim.    
    The Eureka Springs Holiday Parade is Friday night, December 3rd.  The lighted “A Gift From The Heart” procession will wind along Spring Street to the Court House and get us all in the spirit of the season. Hot beverages and treats in the Basin Park will make the experience even more delightful.
    Three concerts in the Eureka Springs City Auditorium are on the books for December.  John Two Hawks will present a concert at the Aud on December 4th benefitting Heifer International.  The Ozark Chorale will perform it’s 15th Annual Old Fashioned Holiday Concert on Saturday, December 11th.  And the local favorite, Home for the Holiday’s Concert is scheduled for Friday, December 17th featuring several of Eureka Springs’ finest talents on one stage.
    Three seasonal music shows run through December 11th.  The Ozark Mountain Hoe-Down’s Christmas Music Show plays on Friday and Saturday nights. The same schedule applies to the Great Passion Play's Christmas Show from 5-7 p.m, and the free, drive-through “Christmas Story In Lights” display on the grounds of the Great Passion Play is open nightly through Dec. 31.  “A Season of Celebration,” Pine Mountain Theater’s Christmas show, runs Thursday through Saturday nights, except Thanksgiving.
Eureka Springs Historical Museum’s Annual Christmas Ball and Auction
    The Historical Museum’s Annual Christmas Ball &  Auction will be held on Friday, December 10th in the ballroom of the Historic Basin Park Hotel from 7:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m.  Dance to the enchanting music of the Jack Mitchell Combo starting at 7:00 p.m. Great food will be provided compliments of the Basin Park Hotel along with your favorite libation available from the cash bar.
    There will be both a Silent and a Live Auction of a wide selection of desirable items (possible Christmas gifts or private treasures), from artwork and tools to massages and repair services donated by area businesses.
    Dress is Resort Casual, Black Tie and Gowns are optional. Tickets are $20.00 in advance and $25.00 at the door. Groups of eight can reserve their own table for $20.00 plus the cost of their tickets.  For tickets, more information about the Ball or Membership, call 479/253-9417 or go to eurekaspringshistoricalmuseum.org

    May your holiday’s sparkle like the brand new eyes of a baby, the bubble in a glass of champagne, the crystals of morning frost in the sunshine, and like the gloss on a new Gibson under the Christmas tree.  I hope you get some good home cooking, and lots of hugs from old friends and family…

Peace and love,
Karen FitzPatrick

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