Thursday, June 28

Theater review: Cirque du Soleil Quidam

Target                                                                   Image/MattBeard
Aristic-athlete or athletic-artist, whichever term you care to use, it applies to the current offering in Indianapolis by Cirque du Soleil (French for "Circle of the sun"). The show's title, Quidam (key-DAM), is Latin for "someone" or "somebody" and reflects the nameless stranger you don't notice in everyday life, passing by on the street or elsewhere.
The story line takes bored Tween Zoe' on a surreal trip to a land that lies somewhere in the vicinity of Cat in the Hat meets Edward Scissorhands, complete with floating parents, headless characters and a general uneasiness as to where it will all lead. But lead Zoe it will, into a world that opens her mind to other possibilities than her rut-life existence at home.
Hand to hand                                                               Image/MattBeard
For those who have attended other Cirque performances, this one is slightly different. No trampolines, few acrobatics and fewer big power plays. Instead the movements are slow, calculated and complex. Detail to attention must be adhered by audience members or miss out on the magnificence of it all.

Not a flashy show, Quidam. This go round is an intensely, intricate show.

Witness the ability to master the laws of physics in Statue where two performers balance on each other with minimal contact. Rotating and maneuvering each other, the sheer amazement factor pulls you in.

Contortionist in Silk                                                        Image/AlSeib
The contortionist twists and manipulates her body high above safety's reach. Zipping toward the ground then pulling back just in time is equally as exciting as a man-eating tiger.

At first it is tempting to look around for a 13-man pyramid and brush off the quiet artists focusing on their intricate movements. Although the performed-live, Benoit Jutras written music is amped up, the show itself is quieter in comparison.

This touring show brings the audience to the forefront, and stage, much more so than other Cirque shows, with the difference being a more comedic touch, also. Creating an on stage scenario, with outrageous ad libs from the people "borrowed" from their seats, the hilarity proved one of the audience favorites.

Bottom Line: As one of its earlier shows, Quidam demonstrates an intense, yet subtle version of Cirque du Soleil's magnificent creativity.

For tickets, directions and details, visit BankersLifeFieldhouse.com.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her new column, Infused, at GottaGo.us and FoodandDrinkDigital.com, and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.
Gotta Go is published on Gottago.us, BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Wednesday, June 27

Top 6 Midwest Places You've Gotta Go This Summer 2012

Lantern Festival                                                                                          Image/IzzyEvans


I have compiled a list of the Top 6 events and great places you've Gotta Go this summer. Within a day's drive, these should definitely be checked out whether as a full-blown vacation, a weekend getaway or day trip. There are long- and short-running exhibits, performances, etc., so take special note of the dates.

Lantern Festival: Art by Day, Magic by Night
Where: Missouri Botanical Garden (St. Louis)
When: Through Aug. 19, 2012
What: Created by Chinese artists on site, 26 silk and light sculptures that are larger-than-life (literally, they are huge-up to 3-stories tall).
My thoughts: By day, fun and pretty; by night, breathtaking and surreal. There are some things that must be seen to be believed and this one is right at the top for that sentiment. This is one of those "You won't see anywhere else" kind of things. My recommendation is to go about an hour before nightfall, see the sculptures by sunlight, then catch the wonder of them by moonlight. Never before seen in the United States, I was fortunate to be invited to St. Louis for the event's grand opening and I absolutely plan to drive the 4 hours to catch it one more time before it disappears.
Website: Mobot.org

World Choir Games 2012
Image/CincinnatiUSARgionalTourismNetwork
Where: Cincinnati
When: July 4-14, 2012
What: "The Olympics of Choral Music" competition
My thoughts: The honor of being selected from a list of 20 cities from around the globe striving to be chosen to host the phenomenal international event is not lost on me. Held every two years in committee-judged locations, Cincinnati is the FIRST ever selected from the United States to host 362 choirs in this international competition. More than 200,00 participants from 48 countries will arrive to compete in front of tens of thousands of attendees. Opening ceremonies, participant village, and special events throughout the host city bring together international and domestic performers all trying for the gold, silver and bronze medals and honor of distinction. More than 300,000 performances and public appearances, 10 venues and a rare chance to be a part of this high-energy event make it a Do-not-miss event.
Website: 2012WorldChoirGames.com

Symphony on the Prairie
                                                     Image/IndianapolisSymphonyOrchestra
Where: Conner Prairie (Indianapolis)
When: Through Sept. 2, 2012
What: Annual summer outdoor concerts, performed by Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
My thoughts: This annual tradition encourages picnics, family time and great music in a casual, scenic location. Jazz, classical, rock and even disco are all performed with, and without, the symphony depending on the show. This year's selection includes Don McClean (American Pie), The Contours (Motown) and firework displays. For a complete schedule, click here Complete schedule
Website: IndianapolisSymphony.org

German Fest
                                                                               Image/GermanFest
Where: Summerfest Grounds (Milwaukee)
When: July 26-29, 2012
What: United States' largest German festival
My thoughts: It only makes sense that the city with the largest German settlement in the United States would hold the largest German festival in the nation. Nearly 100,000 people will frolic for three days along the banks of Lake Michigan, enjoy biergartens and dance in liederhosen.
Website: GermanFest.com

Mackinac Island Fudge Festival
       Image/MackinacIslandTourismBureau
Where: Mackinac Island (Michigan)
When: Aug. 24-25, 2012
What: United State's largest German festival
My thoughts: Fudge. A festival devoted to fudge...kinda proves there is a heaven, doesn't it? Known for the Grand Hotel, horse-drawn carriages and fudge, the island has been a vacation destination since the 19th century. This annual event has activities and demonstrations galore for fudge fanatics known affectionately as "fudgies."
Website: MackincaIslandFudgeFestival.org

Taste of Chicago
                                                                           Image/TasteofChicago
Where:  Grant Park (Chicago)
When: July 11-15, 2012
What:  34th annual Five-day foodie festival
My thoughts: Free admission. This annual event welcomes one-day (called "Pop ups") and five-day restaurant participants from the Chicago area. The more laid back, dressed down predecessor to Gourmet Chicago feeds approximately 1 million attendees.
Website: TasteofChicago.us

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her newest column, Infused at GottaGo.us and FoodandDrinkDigital.com, and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on Gottago.us, BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Tuesday, June 26

Klipsch Summer Concert Series 2012 Continues

Indianapolis, IN (June 26, 2012) Klipsch Music Center is nestled on 228 acres of land in Noblesville, located outside of Indianapolis in Hamilton County. The venue has hosted a wide variety of leading popular artists ranging from Frank Sinatra to Coldplay to Metallica to the recent appearance of Elton John and countless others since it opened in 1989.

Klipsch Summer Concert Series 2012

Phish – June 28 & 29

Toby Keith w/ Brantley Gilbert – June 30

Zac Brown Band – July 7

Vans Warped Tour – July 10

Rockstar Mayhem Festival – July 15

Iron Maiden w/ Alice Cooper – July 19

Nickelback w/ Bush, more – July 21

Wiz Khalifa & Mac Miller – July 28

Big Time Rush w/ Cody Simpson, more – July 29

Jimmy Buffett & the Coral Reefer Band – July 31

Def Leppard & Poison w/ Lita Ford – August 24

Linkin Park & Incubus – August 25

*Rascal Flatts – August 31

KISS & Motley Crue – September 1

Kelly Clarkson & The Fray – September 2

Jason Mraz – September 14

*Jason Aldean – September 15

*Shows not yet on sale; but are part of the Modern Trailer Sales Country Megaticket. General public on sales tba.
For tickets, directions, and details, visit LiveNation.com.

Top 4 Summer Value For Fans In 2012 Includes:
1. $4.00 12 oz. Domestic Draft Beer.
2. 4-Packs of Concert Tickets. Value pack of 4 tickets for the price of 3 at select shows..
3. Concessions: Value Combination Meals. Fan favorite value meals which include a choice of a
cheeseburger, hot dog or chicken tenders, with fries and a soda for a discounted combination price.
Refillable Souvenir Fountain Drink. Live Nation is offering a 32 oz. souvenir fountain soda with a
free refill. Restaurant Quality Upgrades To Menu Items. Upgraded restaurant quality food items
include hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, chicken tenders, corn dogs and more.
4. New Food Stations and Food Trucks. Local food trucks will serve food fans know and like from
the greater Indianapolis area.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, freelance feature writer, and an Indianapolis performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her newest column, Infused at www.GottaGo.us and www.FoodandDrinkDigital.com and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Gotta Go is published on www.Gottago.us, www.BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and these newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter. Connect on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Wednesday, June 20

Infused Restaurant Review: Seasons 52 Unveils Wine-paired Summer 2012 Menu

You could go to years of specialized, intensive schooling and become a wine expert to learn how to pair wine with your meals.

You could.

Or.... you could just let a Master Sommelier such as George Miliotes (No. 152 of only 190 in the world) do it for you. The fact he is from Indiana's own Depauw University is another plus.

Seasons 52 unveiled its Summer 2012 wine-paired menu at a private tasting event where, once again, Master Sommelier Miliotes and Senior Culinary Director Chef Cliff Pleau paired up to, well, pair up food and wine. Naturally, you will be able to choose whatever vino you prefer, these are simply their expert recommendations.

Having been invited to the prior-to-opening event (read review here) I was suitably impressed to return for S52's spring unveiling (read review here) and last night's event. The Darden restaurant has continued to impress me with its menu, wine list and service. The entire concept is serve top top quality, local foods, be environmentally conscious (as with the new "green" water bottle made from Earth-friendly corn), and serve excellent wine. How can anyone hate that idea?

Below is the Summer 2012 menu items we tasted, wine pairings and descriptions, along with my notes:
Cocktail Reception
BBQ Chicken Flatbread-glazed BBQ chicken, balsamic onions, sliced scallions, melted Parmesan
Atichoke and Goat Cheese Flatbread-leaf spincah, balsamic onion and roasted peppers
Wine-Aveleda Vinho Verde, Portugal '10/'11
Note: This wine is crisp and refreshing, perfect with the goat cheese flatbread. If you feel flatbreads have run their course, there are other apps on the menu such as organic edamame, crab, chrimp stuffed mushrooms and spicy chicken chili relleno.


Click here for Seasons 52 full Summer dinner menu

First Course
Chilled lobster and shrimp spring roll-served with sauce trio of cool salsa verde, aromatic lemongrass, sweet-hot red chili
Wine-Hirsch #1 Gruner Veltliner, Kamptal '09/'10
Note: Definitely the Gruner coupled with the seafood. This is one of those, I-could-make-a-meal-with-just-these type of menu items. Seriously. They were light, yet filling; crispy, yet soft. I can picture nibbling on these while dining this summer.

Second Course
Organic Arugula Salad-
watermelon, grilled golden beets, goat cheese, jicama, toasted pistachios
Summer Vegetarian Tasting-grains of life, soft taco, chili relleno, vegetables, cedar-roasted tofu, mango chutney
Wine-Honig, Napa '11
Note: This was my favorite white wine served matching the watermelon as easily as the tofu with mango. I am not a vegetarian by any means. I love red meat. But, this menu selection could convince me to cut way, way back on meat and become a pseudo-vegetarian. Be sure to eat a bite of goat cheese with the beets or watermelon for full effect of flavor.

Third Course
Wild Alaskan Copper River Salmon-
corn risotto, fresh asparagus, roasted perpper, dill sauce
Wine-Chehalem INOX, Willamette '10
Piedmontese All natural, Bone-in Strip Steak 11 oz-roasted asparagus, cremini mushrooms, Fingerling potatoes
Wine-Markham Cellar 1879, Napa '10
Note: This red wine encompassed almost all of my needs in a wine ~ smoky, woodsy ~ the mushrooms and beef loved it as much as I did. Piedmontese will be the steak to request for anyone seeking a low-fat, yet still tender steak. The salmon (difficult to come by due to seasonal restrictions) with a dab of dill and red pepper was paired with the Chehalem and was soothed by the lemongrass notes of this Chardonnay.

Fourth Course
Mini-indulgence desserts-
mocha macchiato, blueberry cheesecake, raspberry & chocolate chip cannoli, pecan pie with vanilla mousse, Belgian chocolate Rocky Road, Key lime pie, chocolate peanut butter mousse, Meyer lemon, fresh fruit.
Wine-Jam Jar Moscato, Western Cape '11
Note: Moscato is definitely a wine to go with for desserts if you are not certain which to choose ~ you can't go wrong with it for cheesecake or mousse. Desserts also change with the season.

Photo credits: Elizabeth J. Musgrave; Seasons 52

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, freelance feature writer, and an Indianapolis performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her newest column, Infused at www.GottaGo.us and www.FoodandDrinkDigital.com and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Gotta Go is published on www.Gottago.us, www.BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and these newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter. Connect on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Monday, June 18

Cirque du Soleil Quidam Tour Bus Rolls into Indianapolis



*** Press Release***

Indianapolis, June 18, 2012 – In anticipation of the upcoming performance of Cirque du Soleil’s Quidam, a one-of-kind tour bus will visit Indianapolis from June 20 - 24.


Quidam will perform from June 27 – July 1 at Bankers Life Filedhouse. Tickets are available at CirqueduSoleil.com/Quidam or 1-800-745-3000.


Check back with GottaGo.us for a full review of Quidam.


The Quidam Tour Bus Schedule and Locations 


Wednesday, June 20

10 am – 2 pm City Market- Downtown Indianapolis

4 – 6 pm Circle Center Mall

10 am – 2 pm Lafayette Square

4 – 8 pm Indiana Fever game- Bankers Life Fieldhouse

Thursday, June 21

10 am – 2 pm City Market- Downtown Indianapolis

4 – 6 pm Circle Center Mall

10 am – 2 pm Lafayette Square

4 – 8 pm Indiana Fever game- Bankers Life Fieldhouse

Friday, June 22

Noon - 2 pm Indiana War Memorial

4 - 8 pm Carmel Art & Design District

Saturday, June 23

10 am- 2 pm Kroger Grocery Store

4 – 6 pm Garfield Park

Sunday, June 24

10 am – 2 pm Barnes & Noble- Keystone Crossing

4 – 6 pm Glendale Town Center

At each location, the Quidam tour bus offers the following complimentary activities:

* Opportunities to win Quidam show tickets and prizes

* Souvenir Quidam photos using green screen technology

* Unique video postcards to send to friends and family

* Popcorn to get into the Cirque spirit

Quidam performances June 27 – July 1 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse

Quidam relates the story of a young girl who feels ignored by her parents. To escape her reality, she slides into an imaginary world where she meets characters who help her discover her true self.


For tickets, schedule and directions, visit

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on BroadwayWorld.com and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Friday, June 15

Milwaukee Dares You to Skip the Family Reunion

Cannoli from Sciortino's Bakery                                  Image/EJMusgrave
Summer time brings many enjoyable activities: swimming, picnics and family reunions. One of the main factors of pleasure at the relative catch-up is the food. Whether Grandma’s traditional dish, the newlywed’s epicurean attempts or Uncle Joe’s trusty barbecue, it is worth the drive to taste everyone’s culinary wizardry.

What if you could find a city that so closely resembles that same abundance of palate-pleasers that it would be worth the time to visit?
Located less than a tank of gas away, Milwaukee is a reunion-style town filled with its culinary delights at every turn…

And, just as with a summer time’s ever growing, extended family reunion, all the relatives have shown up with their dishes of pride in this bordering-Lake Michigan town.

A virtual smorgasbord of epicurean delights is tucked away in every corner of this revitalized family-reunion of a town. Without losing the family tree’s historical significance, Milwaukee embraces its younger, more energetic generation’s offerings.



Escargot form Bartolotta's Lake Park Bistro                     Image/EJMusgrave
Your mother’s Italian great uncle, Peter Sciortino’s Bakery, is there with delicious pastries, including cannoli, over on Brady Street.
A distant cousin’s French husband, Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro, shows off his European flair with Terrine de Canard Truffee, Cote d'Agneau Grillees and well-appointed wine from his upscale, picturesque restaurant.
Usinger’s, the sweet-tempered aunt, brings her famous summer sausage and bratwurst still made in Uncle Fred’s original Old World style from charming Old World Third Street. Also representing the German side of the family at this reunion is everyone’s favorite great uncle, Mader’s, who always brings a stein of beer and traditional Rheinischer Sauerbraten.
Demonstration-The Spice House

Not to be out done, and always wanting to bring wonderful aromas to the table, is the family’s eccentric cousin, The Spice House, located in historic Third Ward District with its fresh and exotic spices.

Never much of a cook, that uber-cool brother-in-law, Great Lakes Distillery, Wisconsin’s first distillery since Prohibition, brings along adult beverages for the over-21 relatives, including Rehorst honey-flavored vodka. Of course at every reunion, is that well-traveled clan, Milwaukee Public Market, who always brings a surprise culinary treat.
Iron Horse Hotel/The Yard
And, naturally, big sister, Milwaukee Food Tours, who always knows exactly where to go and what to try, is there giving locals and visitors alike the chance to nibble and sip their way around the buffet of gastro fare.
Little brother and hip Harley rider, Iron Horse Hotel, shares smart cocktails and upscale nibblers from his outdoor lounge, The Yard.

Visiting Milwaukee is like walking along the pot luck family reunion food table. Whatever you can dream up, it is there. Midwest comfort food, Old World style, fine French cuisine and the latest contemporary dining options are ready to impress everyone and definitely worth the drive.

Bottom Line: With all its culinary options, you can skip the family reunion this year and, instead, head to Milwaukee. Heck, they practically dare you.
Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her newest column, Infused at GottaGo.us and FoodandDrinkDigital.com, and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on Gottago.us, BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Wednesday, June 13

Dig IN Announces VIP Tickets for 2012

VIP tickets, allowing 1,000 people an 11 a.m. entry to the event and a more casual opportunity to talk with chefs, vintners, brewers and all participants, are available for Dig IN 2012. 
240 Sweet Gourmet Marshmallows

What
Dig-IN, A Taste of Indiana food festival 
Where
White River State Park Celebration Plaza, Indianapolis 
When
Sun., Aug. 26, noon-5 p.m. 
Cost
$30-through July
$40-August & at gate
$10 children under 10
$60 VIP ticket
Tickets
DigINdiana.org or (317) 607-8715
Dig IN, A Taste of Indiana, will again showcase Indiana’s top chefs, growers, producers, brewers, vintners, and value-added food producers at the third annual event, Aug. 26 at White River State Park. 

As part of the ticket price, visitors receive two-ounce tastes of unique dishes made with farm-fresh Indiana produce and proteins. More than 30 of the state’s greatest food minds will prepare the tastes on site while discussing their recipes and the all-Hoosier ingredients with visitors. 
Chateau de Pique Wines
Sun-ripened Indiana tomatoes, basil, Greenville's Capriole goat cheese; bison, yellow perch and duck raised on Indiana farms; and blueberries, jalapenos and sweet corn grown in Hoosier soil are just a few ingredients used form Indiana.


The Indiana Wine Grape Council and Brewers of Indiana Guild will provide wine and beer tastings, and local soft drinks and water will be served as well. Local bands, urban gardening exhibits, educational discussion panels, local expert Q&A sessions will round out the day.

Photos: EJMusgrave; IzzyEvans
Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her new column, Infused, at FoodandDrinkDigital.com and GottaGo.us, as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaG, LinkedIn and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on BroadwayWorld.com, Gottago.us, and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Tuesday, June 12

Infused: The Spirit of Chocolat in review


Fredericksburg, TX's Chocolat adds a spirited twist to the traditional art of Swiss chocolate.
In INFUSED, a weekly column, Elizabeth J. Musgrave connects spirits, wine, and beer with culinary and creative arts.

When looking for a perfect dessert, we often turn toward chocolate or an after-dinner drink, creating the unpleasant decision of which to choose. It’s a decision that proves difficult for even the most strong-willed person. But for almost thirty years, Lecia Duke has made life easier by combining the two options into a selection of unique, one-bite nuggets.
Duke’s shop, Chocolat sits snugly deep in the heart of Texas, located in the charming town of Fredericksburg within the Lone Star state’s Hill Country region. Duke blurs the line between spirits and candy through a 200-year-old method learned while apprenticing with a Swiss chocolatier. Originally an architect-turned graphic designer, the chocolate master creates a crystallized sugar nest to encapsulate the liquor, wine or liqueur in a process known as liqueur praline. She then covers the fragile globe with the finest chocolate available: bourbon, Irish Cream and spiced rum are just a few of the choices among the over-21 liquids to get the Willy Wonka treatment.

According to the award-winning chocolate maker, beer and Champagne are the only liquids unable to withstand the process for the Spirited Chocolates line of confections.

After nearly two dozen tastes, my favorite is a toss-up between Amaretto and Sam Houston Straight Kentucky Bourbon, although the red wine is rather tasty as well.

The signature piece, Tequila D’Almendrado, is the only liqueur praline to progress through three individual flavors: almond, tequila and finishing with chocolate.

For more information on chocolates, tours and flavors, visit Chocolat-Tx.us.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her column, Infused, at FoodandDrinkDigital.com, as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on BroadwayWorld.com, GottaGo.us and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Monday, June 11

The Cake Boss, Buddy Valastro Live at Murat Theatre

Who: Buddy Valastro Live: The Cake Boss
What: Homemade for the Holidays Tour
Where: Murat Theatre at Old National Centre
When: Wednesday, December 5 · 7:30 p.m.
Website: LiveNation.com
*Press release*

Candy canes, carols, and the Cake Boss! Celebrate the holidays this season with America’s favorite baker, Buddy Valastro, at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre in Indianapolis, Indiana on Wednesday, December 5 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets go on-sale this Friday, June 15 at 10:00 a.m. at livenation.com, by phone at 800-745-3000, or at the Old National Centre box office. Reserved tickets are $47.50, $37.50 and $24.75 plus applicable service charges. A limited number of VIP tickets are available for $85.00 which includes a post-show meet and greet, Cake Boss tour laminate, and special holiday surprise.

Buddy Valastro, star of TLC’s “Cake Boss,” brings a special live holiday show the entire family will enjoy. Sharing the holiday traditions and stories from his family at Carlo’s Bakery, Buddy presents an all-new show full of holiday spirit and jingle bell rock. Demonstrating the techniques that have made him the most famous cake artist in the country, Buddy will share behind-the-scenes stories from his hit TV show, answer audience questions, and will bring several lucky members of the audience up on stage for cupcake and cake decorating.

One of the centerpiece shows of the TLC network, a 5th season of “Cake Boss” began airing on Memorial Day. Viewers continue to celebrate the mouthwatering desserts and not-to-be-missed Valastro family moments occurring in bustling Hoboken, NJ, home of Carlo’s Bakery, which celebrates its 102nd anniversary this summer. In addition, Buddy’s second TV series on TLC “Next Great Baker” launches a new season on November 26th.

In late 2011, Buddy’s released his second book with Simon & Schuster. In “Baking with the Cake Boss: 100 of Buddy’s Best Recipes and Decorating Secrets,” Buddy shares everything a home cook needs to know about baking as he takes readers through the same progressive training he had in his apprenticeship at Carlo’s Bakery. A new book is set for release in November 2012 (details forthcoming).

The Homemade for the Holidays Tour is produced by Mills Entertainment based in Saratoga Springs, NY. An industry leader in alternative and branded live entertainment, Mills produces, promotes and manages shows throughout the United States, Canada and abroad. For more information, visit millsentertainment.com.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on www.BroadwayWorld.com and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Thursday, June 7

Infused: Christian Moerlein Lager House in Review

Where can you go with a hankering for a nice pint, views of two professional ball stadiums and food infused with various spirits, wine and beer? Only one place. In fact, you will need to trek to the nation’s Midwest region for such a high-maintenance request.

Cincinnati, to be exact.

Upscale Christian Moerlein Lager House, recently opened, offers a gourmet gastropub menu, gleaming taps and every sports fan’s dream – an up close and personal view of the home for the Cincinnati Bengals and the home of the Cincinnati Reds.
Being privy to a four hour private tour of the craft-beer lover’s version of Disneyland, I could only gawk and grin at the marvel of this, this … I don’t want to say beer joint … this, this …

World Class Beer Mecca.

Seriously, who thinks of things like this? Two stories high with seating for nearly 750 of your closest friends, a beer garden, wraparound outdoor seating, and, oh, just for fun -- live music in the park in which it resides, sitting majestically overlooking the Ohio River, paddle and steam boats cruising along for colorful scenery (in case the stadiums aren’t enough).
Although it would have been so simple for proprietor Greg Hardman to have gone over-the-top with the d├ęcor and atmosphere, he has instead, somehow created a blended ambiance of familiar congeniality and understated elegance. As friendly as a neighborhood pub, Moerlein’s pulls off its regal pose while keeping a mindful eye on the original brewing district of German settlers known as Over-the-Rhine.
Gone are the days of underground tunnels keeping barrels cool, giving way to the microbrewery setup Hardman has situated directly to the left of the grand entrance. Acquiring the entire Hudepohi-Schoenling Brewing Co. of Cincinnati's line of brands, Hardman is now the proud, yet somehow modest, owner of Christian Moerlein, Little Kings Cream Ale, Hudepohl Amber Lager, Hudy Delight and Burger.

Beyond the numerous, seasonally changing, tap offerings, the 28,000 square foot lager house has a menu to drool over. Rivaling the finest restaurants and surpassing the standard pub’s level of epicurean delights, Chef Carl Chambers, executive chef, has created a menu infused with beer, spirits and wine for every palate. Barbecue sauce with dark lager, smoked malt marinades, prime rib with Barbarossa demi and horseradish cream, mussels with white wine … oh, so many choices. The list is extensive without ever losing its original focus.

Elizabeth Recommends:
No matter what else happens upon being seated, order immediately from the meat & cheese boards menu for the taste bud teaser you’ll enjoy indicative of the pure delight your foodie palate is in for within this noblest of all craft beer establishments. It is a “choose two or three of each” style selection, including smoked salmon, Prosciutto, candied pork belly, King Ludwig beer cheese, and Cambozola to name a few options.

Beer flights: Get them, enjoy them and then decide which is your favorite beer for a full serving.

Desserts: Here is where it starts to hurt. You absolutely must save room (trust me it will be extremely difficult) for the desserts at this Cincy jewel. Some options include, Black Cherry Forest Cake with Kirschwasser cherry compote and chocolate ganache, Apple Almond Bread Pudding with toffee-crusted vanilla ice cream, brown sugar almonds and white chocolate sauce, Orange Panna Cotta with Grand Marnier candied oranges ... see what I mean?

Bottom Line: Greg Hardman’s Christian Moerlein Lager House brings the world’s attention to Cincinnati’s brewing heritage, sets the future standard for all craft beer establishments and puts ‘Cincinnati’ on the lips of every worthwhile beer drinker, brewer and expert.

Need to know:
Website: ChristianMoerlein.com
Reservations: Highly recommended due to baseball and football home games, concerts, etc.
Parking: Underground parking garage
Hours: Mon – Thurs: 11a.m. – Midnight; Fri & Sat: 11a.m. – 1a.m.; Sun: 11a.m. – 11p.m.
Address: 115 Joe Nuxhall Way, Cincinnati, OH 45202
Phone: 513-421-2337
Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated fine-living columnist, travel writer, and restaurant and performing arts critic. Find her new column, Infused at FoodandDrinkDigital.com, catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on BroadwayWorld.com, GottaGo.us and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Tuesday, June 5

Hoosier Park Racing & Casino Announces 2012 Summer Concert Lineup

(Anderson, Ind) Thousands of visitors from throughout the Midwest are expected to visit Hoosier Park Racing & Casino for a lineup of six top music acts in the Coors Light Summer Music Track II concert series. All concerts will be held in the outdoor music center with the series running through Sun., Sept. 2.

If you are looking for the 2013 Summer Concert Lineup, click here.

Grammy-nominated classic rockers, Foreigner, will kicked off the series Memorial Day weekend, followed by an all-day country music event featuring headliners Gary Allan, Rodney Atkins and Josh Thompson in the
Country Throwdown Tour Sunday, June 3.
Five-time Grammy winner, Wynonna Judd, will perform Saturday, July 7 with progressive rockers, Styx, taking the stage Saturday, Aug. 4. Kool & the Gang, with the Commodores, will bring their blend of funk and soul to the series Friday, Aug. 11. The 2012 Coors Light Summer Music Track II concert series will culminate on Sept. 2 with one last special performance.

All concerts will take place in the Hoosier Park outdoor music center, which accommodates up to 5,500 reserved ticket seats. The music center features a wide variety of ticket options, including premium VIP seating and a private party deck complete with personal beverage service and a private music center entrance. All concerts are scheduled to begin at approximately 7:30 p.m.
Performances 

· Saturday, May 26, Foreigner with special guests The Devonshires

· Sunday, June 3, Country Throwdown Tour (Headliners: Gary Allan, Rodney Atkins & Josh Thompson)

· Saturday, July 7, Wynonna & The Big Noise with special guests Steel Magnolia

· Saturday, Aug. 4, Styx

· Friday, Aug. 11, Kool & the Gang with The Commodores

· Friday, Aug. 31,   Creedence Clearwater Revisited
· Sunday, Sept. 2, Big & Rich with special guests Cowboy Troy and Bradley Gaskin

For more information, tickets and directions, please visit www.hoosierpark.com 

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her new column, Infused at FoodandDrinkDigital.com, and as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, or follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook. Gotta Go is published on GottaGo.us, BroadwayWorld.com and in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Sunday, June 3

Theater Review: Beef and Boards: The Wizard of Oz

Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre, Indianapolis, brings out classic The Wizard of Oz for its beginning summer fare, playing through July 15. Based on the series of books by L. Frank Baum, the story of a little Kansas farm girl transported to a colorful place, one that is "(Somewhere) Over the Rainbow." The tale was made famous by the 1939 MGM film starring Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Burt Lahr, Margaret Hamilton and Frank Morgan.

With several strongly talented crowd favorites in the cast, this live production is sure to be a hit with the family sector as well as anyone looking for a bit of nostalgia. Main character, Dorothy Gale, portrayed by Lisa Bark, joins her trio of friends played by Jeff Stockberger (Tin Man), Doug King (Scarecrow) and Jayson Elliott (Cowardly Lion). Eddie Curry steps onstage to play both the Wizard of Oz and Professor Marvel. Lynne Perkins portrays the Wicked Witch and Miss Gultch
If the show seems to run a little long, it could be the inclusion of the fun "The Jitterbug" dance scene cut from the award-winning movie version.
Two performers step into the Gotta Go Spotlight by standing out with the energy and enthusiasm brought to their roles.

Curry, whose version of Professor Marvel was a little quiet and sedate, delighted the audience with his animated style as the Wizard. Portraying the phony wizard with just the right amount of vulnerability and sweetness, Curry creates a very likable character.

Elliott practically roars upon the stage with his over-the-top Cowardly Lion role. Solos "If I Only Had the Nerve" and "King of the Forest" are easily the best vocal performances of the evening showcasing Elliott's powerful singing ability. A treat for those who are just now learning of his talent for the first time, fans and critics alike who believe one can never get enough of Elliot's multi facted range. Whether in Oklahoma, Smoke on the Mountain series or Always...Patsy Cline, he consistently turns in top notch performances. Elliott's unbridled enthusiasm set the standard in Oz which the others, surprisingly, didn't match until the second act.

I will say there is a confused disappointment for me with Stockberger and King. Both are well known for their talent which leaves this critic scratching her head as to their laid back performances in the first half of the program. The lack of enthusiasm is perplexing. It certainly isn't as if we are not all aware of the fabulous ability each has on the stage.

Particularly with Stockberger whose dramatic and zany sides are both much loved by audiences; who is able to say so much with just a glance or twitch - the expectation was high. A man made out of tin whose moves are limited should be custom made for Stockberger. Fortunately the energy level was somewhat recovered in the second half. I would certainly enjoy knowing that all retrieved all of their normal zest for the remainder of the scheduled performances.

* Special Note & Spoiler Alert * There are several situations occurring throughout the performance which inspires me to mention the best seats for this show are those nearest the aisles. In particular, seats: R34-35; R44-40; L35/45; and along the aisle of L10/20/30 and A9/19.

Bottom Line: Jayson Elliott is absolute perfection and thoroughly delightful as the Cowardly Lion making Beef and Boards' The Wizard of Oz a must-see.

Photo credits: JulieCurryPhotography.com
For tickets, directions, and schedule, click on BeefandBoards.com.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo and Facebook. Infused is published on FoodandDrinkDigital.com. Gotta Go is published on GottaGo.us, BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.

Richard Dawson Dies at 79

RICHARD DAWSON

(Nov. 20, 1932 - June 2, 2012) 

Richard Dawson (nee Colin Lionel Emm), born Nov. 20, 1932, died June 2, 2012 from esophageal cancer. The British-born actor became a United States citizen in 1984.

Dawson was a cast member of the unexpected hit series, Hogan's Heroes, (1965-71), portraying Cpl. Peter Newkirk. The sitcom revolved around a WWII prisoner camp.
Family Feud

Known perhaps best for hosting the popular game show, Family Feud, (1976-89), Dawson was also a regular guest on the '70s popular game show, Match Game 73 (1973-82).

Dawson is survived by his wife, Gretchen, their daughter Shannon, two sons, Mark and Gary, from his first marriage to British film star Diana Dors, and four grandchildren.

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated columnist, travel writer, performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC, and follow her on Twitter @GottaGo and Facebook. Infused is published at FoodandDrinkDigital.com. Gotta Go is published on BroadwayWorld.com, in M magazine and the following newspapers: South Sider Voice, Indiana Weekender, New Palestine Reporter, Pendleton Times Reporter and Fortville-McCordsville Reporter.