Born to Stand Out

(L to R) Brian Steven Shaw (Angelique), Brent Barrett (Georges) and Adam Lendermon (Chantal) in La Cage aux Folles. Photo by Charr Crail.

(L to R) Brian Steven Shaw (Angelique), Brent Barrett (Georges) and Adam Lendermon (Chantal) in La Cage aux Folles. Photo by Charr Crail.

With hit after hit, Music Circus will wrap up its 64th season with the hilarious La Cage aux Folles. After reading about its storied Tony Award-winning history and catching a glimpse of the flashy musical’s theatrics at Badlands, Sacramento audiences are in for a treat. Truly, we all need a little glitz, glamour and a few white lies to shake up our weekly routines.

Based on Jean Poiret’s play of the same name (which I still struggle to pronounce) and the inspiration for the late Robin Williams’s film, The Birdcage, the bawdy musical takes the simple act of meeting the parents… and adds a fresh dose of drag, deceit and dance. Madness ensues as gay couple, Georges, the manager of a Saint-Tropez nightclub (played by Broadway veteran Brent Barrett), and his drag queen partner Albin (captured perfectly by touring regular Alan Mingo Jr.) attempt to conceal their true selves to blend in with the ultra-conservative parents of Anne, the fiance of Georges’s son, Jean-Michel. Thankfully their colorful personalities outshine their dull “masculine” caricatures.

Don’t miss your last chance to see Music Circus this year! Catch performances of La Cage aux Folles at the Wells Fargo Pavilion August 19-24.Tickets ranges from $35-$80. Performances will be held at 7:30pm on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday nights; Thursday, Saturday and Sunday showtimes are 2pm and 7:30pm. For more information, visit the musical’s event page on

***This blog post was written by’s Content & Social Media Coordinator, Jamila B. Khan.

Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 8/18

This Week: Mix it up this week!

Midtown_Cocktail_Week2Midtown Cocktail Week 2014
August 19-24
A few highlights:
Cocktail Competition
Harlow’s; Tues 6pm-9pm
Bright Lights, Big City Dress Up, Get Down
Grange Restaurant; Fri 6pm-9pm
Island Summer Nights
Crawdad’s on the River; Sun 1pm-4pm

16th Annual Race for the ArtsRace_for_the_Arts
William Land Park
Aug 23
Sat 8:30am
Put on your tennis shoes and support local arts organizations at this 5K.

dana_carveyDana Carvey
Punch Life Comedy Club
Aug 23-26
Sat & Sun 7pm; Tues 8pm

Catch this rare opportunity to see the legendary comedian.

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Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 8/11

This Week: Brewing up some social fun!

RAWSacramentoRAW Artist Showcases: Communique
Ace of Spades
Aug 14
Thurs 7:30pm-11:30pm

Get ready for a circus of local creativity at this event that celebrates local artistic talent.

Tap FolsomTap_Folsom
Lake Natoma Inn
Aug 15
Fri 6pm-10pm

Attend this first ever craft brew fest held in historic Folsom.

Sac_Bridal_Couture2Sacramento Couture Runway & Bridal Show
Memorial Auditorium
Aug 17
Sun 1pm-5pm
Brides will be blown away by this showcase of designer gowns and wedding trends.

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Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 8/4

This Week: Go Bananas This Week

Ray_FranklinRay Franklin: A Retrospective
Gallery 2110 Art Complex
Aug 7-Sept 6
Various times

This exhibit encompasses the 25+ year career of the Sacramento-based artist.

Banana_Festival5th Annual Banana Festival
William Land Park
Aug 9 & 10
Sat 10am-7pm; Sun 10am-5pm

The two-day event highlights the many cultures that use the fruit as a source of food & art.

Car_CruiseCA Auto Museum Car Cruise
Fulton Avenue
Aug 9
Sat 4pm-9pm
Gorgeous classics will travel down the street for this sixth annual show.

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Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 7/28

This Week: Food. Festivals. Fun.

Festival_of_Cheese_BIGSacramento Cheesemaker Dine Around
Downtown Sacramento
July 28-Aug 1
Various times

Restaurants will feature special cheese-themed items while the American Cheese Society is in town.

The_Color_Run_NewThe Color Run
Capitol Mall Greens
Aug 2
Sat 9am

This unique paint race will add some color to your weekend!

Festa_ItalianaFesta Italiana
Croatian American Cultural Center
Aug 2-3
Sat 11am-10pm; Sun 11am-7pm

Italy comes to the River City! Enjoy the country’s cuisine, music & heritage this weekend.

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Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 7/21

This Week: Add a Local Twist to Your Plans

Sacratomato WeekSacratomato_Week
The Sutter District
July 21-27
Various times

Celebrate Sacramento’s signature fruit with creative menus & drink specials.

South_PacificSouth Pacific
Wells Fargo Pavilion
July 22-27
Various times

This Rodgers and Hammerstein classic proves that love can overcome any obstacle.

Strauss Festival of Elk GroveStrauss Festival of Elk Grove
Elk Grove Regional Park
July 24-27
Thurs-Sun 8:15pm
Enjoy choreographed stories set to the music of Austrian composer Johann Strauss.
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Its All About the Sacra”tomato” This Week

RedRabbit Heirloom Salad

Midsummer means tomato season in Sacramento! It’s the time of year where heirlooms begin to pop up all over restaurant menus around town. This year the Sutter District wrangled its restaurants and bars together to create menu items to highlight the colorful fruit. The week-long dedication has been dubbed “Sacratomato Week” – a nod to our river city’s nickname due to the “farm fresh flavors that flourish” here locally (as quoted from the Sacratomato Facebook page) in America’s Farm to Fork Capital. The celebration begins tomorrow and runs through Sunday (July 21-27) so start planning your meals accordingly!

When I think of Sacratomato week, I can’t help but think of the movie Forrest Gump and the scene where Bubba says, “shrimp are the fruit of the sea” and proceeds to describe all of the ways you can enjoy shrimp. Like Bubba, I’ll happily eat a  tomato any way you can “slice and dice” it.


This week, I foresee my Facebook newsfeed being filled with a steady stream of posts about the various kinds of tomato dishes my friends are enjoying in Midtown- tomato soup, tomato salsa, tomato pizza, roasted tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes…I can go on and on. There will be check-ins and pictures galore of people gallivanting around town enjoying the ‘fruits’ of our bountiful farms and culinary talents. (You’ll absolutely see some from me!)

Here are a few sneak peeks from the preview night I was lucky enough to get an invite to:

For more information about Sacratomato Week, visit the event page here.

***This blog post was written by’s Marketing & Development Manager, Rachael Lankford.

Make It A Festival Night!

We’re halfway through summer, which means it’s festival time! I don’t know about you, but my favorite part about the season is the food. Here are a few ways you can get your grub on at some of Sacramento’s upcoming festivals.


So it won’t exactly be great for my diet, but how can anyone resist fried festival food with a cold beer to go along with it?! (Photo courtesy of Flickr user RLEVANS)

161st Annual California State Fair, July 11-27
As always, there will be hundreds of food vendors on hand at the historic fair — spaghetti ice cream, chocolate covered bacon, or fried anything — but I especially can’t wait to pick up some fresh produce from the Friends of the State Fair Farmers Market to help me stay on my healthy track! Details

10th Annual Sacramento Japanese Film Festival, July 18-20
Great movies AND great food? Sign me up! With sponsors including Oto’s Marketplace and Gekkeikan Sake Folsom Brewery, there is sure to be some deliciously cultured eats and strong drinks at this film fest. Oishii Sushi is also right around the corner, which makes it the perfect before or after movie destination. You can even show off your singing voice in one of its private karaoke booths! Details

Sacramento Shakespeare Festival, July 5-August 3
Picnics are encouraged at this outdoor theater fest that flips the Bard’s classics on their heads. Why not pack your basket with one of the Tower Cafe‘s amazing Chinese Chicken salads? If you happen to catch me eating their chocolate layered El Diablo cake for dessert, don’t tell my diet coach! Details

tempest fairytale town

The Cat and the Fiddle Music Festival will feature live music for the entire family on Fairytale Town’s Mother Goose Stage. (Photo courtesy of Fairytale Town’s Facebook page)

Cat and the Fiddle Music Festival, August 9-10
I’m looking forward to the theme-park style food sold at Fairytale Town’s yummy Dish & Spoon Cafe during this family-friendly concert series. They sell everything from hot dogs to peanut butter and jelly sandwiches — all for a great price, too! Details

So we might have to work out a little more to make up for all of the food you’ll be eating, but we both know it will be SO worth it in the end. See you there!

To learn more about these and other upcoming festivals, check out the Festivals page here. And to learn more about’s Make It a Night campaign, click here.

***This blog post was written by’s Content Specialist, Alyssa Sanguinetti.


Top 10 Sneak Peek: Week of 7/14

This Week: Flicks, Food & FUNdraisers

Wells_Fargo_WednesdaysWells Fargo Wednesdays
Sacramento Zoo
July 16-30
Wed 9am-4pm
Your kids can explore the zoo for free on select Wednesdays in July!

Japanese_Film_FestivalSacramento Japanese Film Festival
Crest Theatre
July 18-20
Various times
Watch an eclectic mix of Japanese cinema at the historic theatre.

Twilight_Open_Cockpit_NightTwilight Open Cockpit Night
Aerospace Museum of CA
July 19
Sat 5pm-8pm
Hang out with Radio Disney & let your dreams take flight at the museum.

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Practically perfect in every way

Mary Poppins (played by Kelly McCormick) makes her grand arrival. Photo by Charr Crail.

In Music CircusMary Poppins, the title character is just as you remember her: a little bit sweet, a little bit sassy, and practically perfect in every way. This production of the classic Disney musical is perfect for theatergoers young and old and will ignite a certain whimsy that only Mary Poppins can.

Though this production is certainly reminiscent of the 1964 movie starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, it shines in its own light. With new staging and musical numbers alongside favorites like “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” “Let’s Go Fly a Kite,” and “Feed the Birds,” Mary Poppins will be a delight regardless of whether you’ve seen the classic film.

Played by amazing young talents Noa Solorio and Ben Ainley-Zoll, Jane and Michael Banks are being raised by an increasing number of nannies, all of which have failed to fit the bill. The two decide to write an advertisement with their requirements for a new nanny, and within seconds, Mary Poppins arrives. While it seems she brings mischief wherever she goes, Mary Poppins is the only one who can bring the Banks family together in a meaningful way.

(L to R) Noa Solorio (Jane Banks), Kelly McCormick (Mary Poppins) and Ben Ainley-Zoll (Michael Banks) in Mary Poppins, produced by Music Circus at the Wells Fargo Pavilion July 8 - 13, 2014. Photos by Charr Crail

(L to R) Noa Solorio (Jane Banks), Kelly McCormick (Mary Poppins) and Ben Ainley-Zoll (Michael Banks). Photo by Charr Crail

Just as Mary Poppins transforms an ordinary park into a magical wonderland, so does she transform those around her. With her tricks and treats, Mary teaches the Banks family perspective and empathy. My favorite Mary Poppins lesson, however, is: “anything can happen if you let it.”

There is no doubt that if Marry Poppins can improve the Banks family, she can also help to transform your thinking too.

Mary Poppins will have you clapping as characters fly, dance, and tap in merriment. If you need to escape the Sacramento summer heat, I suggest a spoonful of sugar and a visit to the Wells Fargo Pavilion to see Mary Poppins!

Mary Poppins will play at Music Circus through July 13 with very limited ticket availability. Tickets range from $35- $80 and are available by phone at (916) 557-1999, online at, or in person at the Wells Fargo Pavilion box office. For more information, visit the musical’s event page here.

***This review was written by contributor, Allison Baker.