By WILL KRISS
Upcoming April and May events offer plenty of interesting and unusual activity opportunities all across the Great Lakes state. If you’re seeking a new experience, or if you just feel like seeing something a bit different, look no further than this preview.
March 25-30 – Ann Arbor Film Festival
The Ann Arbor Film Festival has been recognized worldwide as an excellent source of works for independent filmmakers. This year, the festival will run for six days, featuring more than 40 programs with more than 200 films of all lengths and genres from over 20 countries, including experimental, animation, documentary, fiction, and performance-based works. For more information, visit the festival website at http://www.aafilmfest.org/
April 2 – Mindless Self Indulgence perform at St. Andrews Hall
Since 1997, the New York City based four-piece act Mindless Self Indulgence (MSI) have been winning audiences over with their bizarre antics, twisted blend of electronic and punk music, and their high-energy concerts layered with audience interaction and props. With an almost undefinable genre, the music appeals to all kinds of fans, and as a result, the concert attracts one of the most mixed audiences of any show. With five studio albums under their belt and a handful of EP’s, MSI has been hard at work carving out its own original style ever since its inception. Their last two stops in Michigan have been to The Fillmore in Detroit; however, on April 2, they will be bringing their act to St. Andrews Hall. Tickets are $35 after service fees, with all ages welcome. A must see for almost any music fan. In addition, MSI has announced that after this tour, the group will be taking a hiatus from touring, making this show one of the last possible opportunities to see them live for a while.
April 4 – Dream Theater is “Along for the Ride” at The Fillmore Detroit
Following the release of their critically acclaimed self-titled studio album, progressive Metal/Rock legends Dream Theater have just embarked on a North American tour that will be stopping at the Fillmore in Detroit on April 4. Entitled “Along for the Ride,” this tour has already finished its first leg in Europe, which ran from Jan. 15 to March 2
across 20 countries.
In regards to what fans can expect from the show, guitarist John Petrucci says, “We are all really pumped and excited to bring our new live show to North America and to take all of our amazing fans ‘Along For The Ride’! Returning to the ‘An Evening With’ format will enable us to deliver the best DT live experience yet with time for lots of music, and we can’t wait to share it with all of you. With this tour, our goal is for you to be able to step into the world of Dream Theater from the moment you enter the venue.”
A night with Dream Theater will surely be one to remember. Tickets start at $29 after service fees, and are sure to go quickly.
April 5 – Monroe Street Fair / Hash Bash Returns to Ann Arbor
On Saturday, April 5, the Monroe Street Fair/ Hash Bash will return to Ann Arbor for its 13th year (43rd for Hash Bash). Thanks to generous sponsors, the festival is free with plenty of activities to see. This year, the festival will include seminars by guest speakers Ed Rosenthal (author, publisher and marijuana advocate) and Mathew Abel (executive director at Michigan NORML), with more to be announced soon.
The festival also will feature live music, with groups representing Michigan as well as cities and states across the nation. Some of the announced performers include Lil Wyte of Memphis, whose next album is to be released in April of this year; Chief Greenbud of Nashville; as well as Detroit-based acts Bizarre, I.L.O., Jeremy Shipley and others.
Genealogy: Discovering Your Family Roots; Wednesdays, April 9 – May 14, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Our friends over at North Central Michigan College are hosting a six-week program for students to come and learn about their own genealogy. Genealogist and NCMC Professor Kim Simpson has 40 years of experience on the subject, and students will be able to track their lineage back three generations. All reference materials are provided to students within the course.
Students will examine research sources and methods, use internet materials, and explore ways to organize and sort the information you find about your ancestors, as well as learn to source and document your data. To enroll, visit
Morel Mushroom Festival in Boyne City — May 15-18
The morel mushroom is known to grow wildly in Michigan, and is so popular that a festival happens every year to celebrate them. The 54th annual Morel Mushroom Festival will be taking place this year May 15-18. A statement from the official Petoskey website claims: “At this festival, hundreds of mushroom lovers from around the country come to seek that elusive delicacy – the marvelous morel. Found in nearby woods and clearings, morels are favored by those who know their mushrooms and during the festival, hunters hit to Northern Michigan woods to take home the top prize for the most mushrooms found.”
Several of the planned activities for the festival include guided morel hunts, craft fairs, showcasing of local musicians, carnival rides, and much more. For more information about the festival, visit http://www.visitpetoskeymichigan.com/stories/morel_mushroom_festival_boyne_city_michigan.