2nd Saturday Roadmap: Sacramento Loves Art

Do you love art as much as I do? Prove it during this weekend of love by taking in all that 2nd Saturday has to offer! There’s a lot to love this month, so bring your Valentine and take ’em on an artsy adventure they’ll never forget. 

Start the Journey:
I’ll start the day off with a trip to Rubicon Brewing Company for a couple appetizers and a pint of their First Contact pale ale. After fueling up for the day, I’ll be making my first gallery stop of the day at the Axis Gallery. Its newest exhibit, titled Uncontrollable Beauty: An Odyssey – What We Need Is Always With Us, admittedly intrigued me because of its crazy long title, but after looking at some of Cheselyn Amato’s work, I’m extremely excited to see what the artist has sewn up.

Photo courtesy of the Axis Gallery

Photo courtesy of the Axis Gallery.

A Lifetime’s Collection:
After scratching my brain at Axis, I’ll be popping over to Pour House for some brunch and a St Louis Gueuze sour. This quick meal will be followed by a stop to Elliot Fouts Gallery’s The Ed Goldman Collection show. This eclectic exhibit  features works collected by Ed Goldman, an author and daily columnist for the Sacramento Business Journal.

Photo courtesy of the Elliot Fouts Gallery

Photo courtesy of the Elliot Fouts Gallery.

Big Screen, Short Stories:
If you are a movie snob like me then you’re probably pretty excited for the Oscars, happening at the end of this month. I’ve seen all of the nominated full-length feature films but missed out on most of the shorts. The Crest Theatre is giving Sacramentans the chance to see the five nominees for the live-action short Oscar. After getting film schooled, I’ll be digging into Mother‘s vegetarian treats.

Photo courtesy of the Crest Theatre

Photo courtesy of the Crest Theatre.

Crafty Motel:
I’ll be making a pit stop at Frank Fats for one last meal (Fats special wok-fried spareribs and sang gai shee chow mein, please!) to prepare for my last stop at Art Hotel 916. This abandoned hotel has been filled to the gills with works from 30 artists who poured their talent into this one building that will soon be demolished. This building is being given a new life (albeit, a short one), and you do not want to miss the chance to experience it. This 2nd Saturday is the last day you will be able to check out the Art Hotel, so you must go! Note: While there will be a line, the experience is well worth it.

Photo courtesy of M5 Arts

Photo courtesy of M5 Arts

Whether you want to follow my map or make your own plan, you can’t go wrong. Whatever you plan to do, make sure to get social with us by using the hashtag #Sacramento365.

***This blog was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

2nd Saturday Roadmap: A guide to a night on the grid

What better way to start the New Year than a 2nd Saturday affair? There is tons of great art being displayed this month throughout Sacramento and I’ve rounded-up some of the shows I’m most excited to check out this weekend. This month I’ll be checking out all “The Grid” has to offer.

Join me in celebrating Sacramento365.com partnership with the In the Sac app by checking out these great exhibits on 2nd Sat and exploring all the grid has to offer.

Quality Family Time:
I’ll start my journey off right with some cold pressed raw juice from the Sun & Soil Juice Company. I’ll definitely be grabbing a Sweet Green (a sweet apple, cucumber, spinach, lime, and ginger blend), but depending on how tired I am I might be grabbing a cold brew coffee (from Pachamama coffee) for the road. My first gallery stop in 2016 will be at the Axis Gallery to check out the Family Stories…or Down the Rabbit Hole Exhibit. This exhibit features the stories of Angela Casagrande’s family retold through heavily edited photographs.

Brighten Up and Fill Up:
After getting lost in a world of black and white, I’ll be heading to a slightly brighter exhibit. Get Lit at Little Relics Boutique & Galleria presents Kristen Hoard’s LED infused metal sculptures. These whimsical works are sure to lighten up what looks to be a gloomy overcast day. By this time, I’ll probably work up an appetite — don’t be surprised if you catch me with a beer and a pulled pork sandwich at Tank House BBQ.

Photo courtesy of Kristen Hoard

Photo courtesy of Kristen Hoard.

Get Inspired:
The stop I’m most looking forward to is at the Artists’ Collaborative Gallery. This month, the Old Sacramento venue will be featuring the work of the incredible Priscilla Wong. Priscilla has an uncommon muscle disorder that has taken much of her mobility away. This hasn’t stopped Priscilla remarkably, she paints using only her tongue and toe. Seeing someone create so much beauty after such hardship is something everyone should see. After taking in Wong’s impressive work, I’ll mull over what I’ve seen at Ten 22’s Dine Downtown meal.

Photo courtesy of Artists' Collaborative Gallery

Photo courtesy of Artists’ Collaborative Gallery.

Laugh the Night Away:
I’ll end my day with some laughter at the Sacramento Comedy Spot’s Barger’s World. Starring Eric Barger, a favorite of the Comedy Spot, the show is a fictitious kids television show that’s really not for children. After laughing my butt off, I’ll head over to LowBrau to try a couple of their newer brews.

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Comedy Spot

Photo courtesy of Sacramento Comedy Spot.

This 2nd Saturday is sure to be full of fun and great art. You can follow my map if you’d like, but if you’d like to plan your own you can check out Sacramento365.com’s 2nd Saturday page to craft your own adventure. Whatever you plan to do, make sure to get social with us by using the hashtags #Sacramento365 and #intheSac.

***This blog was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

Get to Know January Featured Artist Gioia Fonda

Jan2016_ProfileWith the New Year comes a new way of doing things. After a few years getting to know Sacramento365.com featured artists through online communication, we’ve decided to return to the art of conversation. In 2016, our team is connecting with creatives working on projects that will be impacting the Sacramento arts landscape, interacting with them in the spaces where they craft their dreams and masterpieces.

Interdisciplinary artist Gioia Fonda helps us kick off our re-energized interview series here.

2nd Saturday Roadmap: A guide to a colorful, festive night

It may be a cold, wet weekend here in Sacramento, but our city’s 2nd Saturday festivities are really heating up! I’ve found some vibrant art, unique holiday experiences, and a performance that will have you laughing out loud.

Bundle up and prepare for some fun as I show you some of the coolest events and exhibits happening this weekend.

Get Wild:
After hitting up one of the busiest breakfast spots in town — the Tower Cafe — I’ll make the pilgrimage to William Land Park to relive one of my favorite childhood memories: watching the Sacramento Zoo’s Holiday Magic festivities. I always looked forward to the animals opening their brightly colored enrichments (a.k.a. presents) as a child; this year is no different. Even if there’s rain, watching the animals playfully open their gifts should not be missed.

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Zoo

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Zoo

Art to Make You Merry:
After watching the animals romp around with their gifts, it’ll be high time for me to treat myself. I’ll warm up with a coffee from Old Soul Co. then head across the street to the Brickhouse Gallery to treat my eyes to Visual Revel featuring the art of Sacramento365.com April Featured Artist, Demetris “B.A.M.R.” Washington. You might want to stick around the Gallery for an open mic with Candace Goodwin and Jenny Lynn later that evening.

Photo courtesy of B.A.M.R

Photo courtesy of B.A.M.R

Last Minute Shopping:
Fun fact: There are only two more weekends left before Christmas! If you still haven’t found a gift for the special people in your life (like me), Fe Gallery is having their Christmas Table-Top Sale, featuring some great gifts from local artists. The best part? A portion of the proceeds raised will be donated to Developmental Disabilities Service Organization’s (DDSO) Short Center North. DDSO helps better the lives of people with developmental disabilities primarily through art.

After shopping ’til I drop, I’ll swing around the corner to Hoppy Brewing Company for a pint of their Burnt Sienna Ale.

Photo courtesy of the Fe Gallery

Photo courtesy of the Fe Gallery

Say Anything IRL:
Next, I will take part in Sacramento’s inaugural Unsilent Night. This event was created by composer Phil Kline in an effort to bring the community together for a unique “caroling” experience. Unsilent Night is built upon audience participation, so make sure to download the tracks and bring a boombox. Of course, I will have to stop by Hot Italian for some Magnini pizza after hand. There are very few things better than pizza; being a part of a new event is one of them.

Photo by Noel Y. Calingasan

Photo by Noel Y. Calingasan

Whether you choose to follow my map of fun or blaze your own trail, this 2nd Saturday is certain to be a delight!

If you’re looking to make your own plan, check out Sacramento365.com’s 2nd Saturday and Holiday sections. Brave the rain, and have a jolly old time this weekend with me!

***This blog was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content Specialist, Dylan Fisher.

A Day in the Life with The Sugar Plum Fairy

behind the sceneSacramento Ballet’s principal dancer Alexandra Cunningham shares how she and The Sacramento Ballet Company dancers prepare for the region’s holiday tradition.

As the orchestra tunes their instruments there is a certain magic in the air. It’s almost opening night of Ron Cunningham’s The Nutcracker and I can hardly contain my excitement! All the memories of performing in this classic holiday production for the past 22nd years come flooding back to me.

From my humble beginnings as a Baby Bunny in the “Battle Scene”, I always knew that one day I wanted to be a professional dancer for The Sacramento Ballet. I would watch the ballerinas in awe as they accomplished their choreography with the confidence and grace that comes with years of experience. Still a youngster, and just starting my ballet training, I couldn’t imagine exactly how they did it — but I knew that I wanted to be just like the dancers on stage.

Now, 22 years later, there I am backstage in my Sugar Plum tutu preparing my pointe shoes and trying to calm the butterflies in my stomach. Yes, even after all these years, and after all the hours of rehearsal, I still get nervous before every show. I know all the choreography inside and out, but the thing about a live performance is that you never know what might happen on stage — and that thrill is one of the many reasons why I love to perform.

This year alone, the Company dancers and I have spent over 200 hours in rehearsal for The Nutcracker. This year’s Nutcracker is certainly not our first rodeo –if you add up all the years each Sacramento Ballet dancer has performed a version of the Nutcracker, we dancers bring audiences a total of 361 years of experience! For many, like myself, The Nutcracker was our first experience on stage and the reason why we eventually pursued a professional ballet career.

theater day
The life of a dancer is one that requires immense dedication, discipline, and vision. We start our workday with a one and a half hour ballet class to improve our ballet technique and build stamina, followed by up to five hours of rehearsal, six days a week. We rehearse our choreography for our Artistic Director or ballet master (equivalent to a coach) who constantly corrects us in an effort to helps us achieve our best possible performance. Over time, we develop tough skin like the calluses around our toes. Dancers are taught to strive for perfection, although we all know that it is unattainable. Our work never ends as there is always a next level to reach.

All the hard work and hours of training however become instantly worth it once we step onto the stage. The Nutcracker is particularly treasured by the dancers as, in our Sacramento version, we work with over 500 children throughout the performances. To see their smiles and genuine joy as they take the stage alongside us reminds us of the reason we pursued our chosen profession in the first place.

The Nutcracker is so much more than just a ballet performance — it’s a holiday tradition that celebrates our community in the most meaningful way. It’s truly a miracle to watch people from all walks of life spend their time and invest their hearts into making The Nutcracker a success. For me, it wouldn’t be the holiday season if I wasn’t backstage preparing to dance The Nutcracker. Now, as I prepare for opening night, I am filled with a special kind of happiness that comes from knowing I am part of a legacy that inspires the spirit of the holiday season for generations.

See The Sacramento Ballet’s hard work throughout the month of December. Ron Cunningham’s The Nutcracker will be performed December 12-22 at the Sacramento Community Center Theater. To learn more, visit its Sacramento365.com event listing here.

This blog post was written by The Sacramento Ballet’s principal dancer, Alexandra Cunningham.

Get to Know December Featured Artist Priscilla Ameneyro

Dec2015_ProfileTo round out 2015, Sacramento365.com decided to get introspective with the vibrant mixed media artist, Priscilla Ameneyro. Expressive, minimalist, and wonderfully organic, Ameneyro’s artwork is born from letting go: her action paintings are uninhibited, taking viewers on a journey “where creativity is endless”; while her works on paper explore the boundaries of organic shapes and arrangements.

Find out more about the brilliant British expat’s creative mind here.

Be Grateful at these Sacramento Thanksgiving Events

ThanksgivingAs Turkey Day steadily approaches, we at Sacramento365.com have searched far and wide for local outings that’ll put you in the spirit of giving (and eating)! Feel-good turkey trots will support local nonprofits and keep your metabolism high for your Thanksgiving feast, while local Black Friday and Small Business Saturday celebrations will ensure that our community (and wallets) benefit from holiday spending.

Be driven to share…

8th Annual Turkey Drive*
Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services
Fri (11/20) 4:30am-7pm

*Families interested in receiving a turkey can go to the Sacramento Food Bank & Family Service Building on Monday, November 23. Distribution begins at 8am.

If you want to move for a great cause, consider one of these Thanksgiving Day races:

Run to Feed the Hungry
Sacramento State
Thurs (11/26) 8am

Folsom Turkey Trot
Folsom Parkway Trails
Thurs (11/26) 8:50am

A number of local groups will be offering free Turkey Day meals for those in need:

Thanksgiving Community Meal
Ray Robinson Oak Park Community Center
Thurs (11/26) 11am-1pm

20th Annual Free Thanksgiving Dinner
Pannell Meadowview Community Center
Thurs (11/26) 11am-2pm

Don’t stress out this Black Friday…treat yourself to some fun activities while supporting local:

Free Admission Day: Canned Food Drive
Fairytale Town
Fri (11/27) 10am-4pm

Brewery Black Friday: 3rd Annual Party
New Helvetia Tasting Room
Fri (11/27) Noon-Midnight

Sacramento Kings v. Minnesota Timberwolves: Kings Food Drive Game
Sleep Train Arena
Fri (11/27) 7pm

Search the Sacramento365.com Holiday Events page for a cornucopia of things to do during the long holiday weekend.

***This blog post was written by Sacramento365.com’s Content and Social Media Coordinator, Jamila B. Khan.