Archive | June, 2016


Michael Kelsey experiments at Peach’s by Matt Clevenger Photo: Dulcimer player Butch Ross strums his way to Taffy’s; photo: Trish Wileman Using only a few electronic effects and his trusty Taylor 615 acoustic, Indianapolis-based recording artist Michael Kelsey has spent decades pushing the boundaries of guitar playing and creating a musical career built on creativity and […]

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The Ballooners


Your summer guide for floating through the Miami Valley By Joyell Nevins Photo: A balloonist prepares his craft at the Flag City BalloonFest, Aug. 12-14; photo: Bruce Baker Long before airplanes were a reality, there were balloons big enough to fly someone above the earth. Even after technology makes getting coordinates or measuring the wind […]

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On Your Marc: 6/28/16

Woody Hayes and politics by Marc Katz So I’m in the sports office at a ridiculous time of the morning–1:45 a.m.–and, of course, I can’t remember what I was doing there, but I didn’t and still don’t drink or do drugs, so I wasn’t lost. This was pre-computer/cellphone days, which was a time when dinosaurs […]

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The architect, the chocolatier


The wizard of Ghyslain Chocolate by Paula Johnson Photo: Key Lime Cheesecake at Ghyslain Chocolate Factory; photo: Paula Johnson “The superiority of chocolate, both for health and nourishment, will soon give it the same preference over tea and coffee in America which it has in Spain.” —Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson had something there, especially in terms […]

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Debate Forum: 6/28/16

Criminal Minds

From prison locks to ballot box Should felons get the vote? By Sarah Sidlow You can do it in public, or you can do it in private. You can do it with your friends, or by yourself. You can do it early; you can do it by mail. That’s right, we’re talking about voting. And […]

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The rocky mountaineer


Butch Ross’s dulcimer rock at Taffy’s by Tim Walker Butch Ross—touring musician, Chattanooga resident, and lover of the mountain dulcimer—began his musical career playing a much more common stringed instrument: the guitar.    “I came to the dulcimer backwards. I started out playing rock and roll guitar,” Ross says, “and from there, I transitioned into […]

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What the world needs from ‘The BFG’

In Disney's fantasy-adventure THE BFG, directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Roald Dahl's beloved classic, a precocious 10-year-old girl from London named Sophie (Ruby Barnhill) befriends the BFG (Oscar (R) winner Mark Rylance), a Big Friendly Giant from Giant Country.  The film opens in theaters nationwide on July 1.

When will Steven Spielberg acknowledge kids’ maturing sensibilities? By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Ruby Barnhill as Sophie in Steven Spielberg’s “The BFG” Rating: PG; Grade: C Earlier this year, Jeff Nichols helmed the indie release “Midnight Special,” which felt like it was inspired by the complex and emotionally rich Steven Spielberg classic family movies of old—think “Close […]

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The bite’s better than the bar


Scruffy’s Hot Dogs: Chicago in Dayton by Paula Johnson Photo: The New York Dog (left) and the classic Chicago-style Scruffy Dog (right) at Scruffy’s; photo: Paula Johnson Walking into Scruffy’s Hot Dogs is like walking into a hot dog joint in the Windy City. You will seriously be checking Google to verify your location because there […]

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Jes McMillan’s Mosaic Institute

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by Bill Franz Photo: The Mosaic Institute serves artists at 43 S. Main St. in Miamisburg; photo: Bill Franz Most artists would be content to find a studio with good light and with enough space to store their material and make their art. Mosaic artist Jes McMillan thinks bigger. She rented a 16,000-square-foot building in downtown Miamisburg that once housed […]

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Behind the bookcase

Dayton's Children

Mark Martel’s ‘Dayton’s Children’ reinvents By Mark Luedtke Photo: Aeronautical engineer Maude Elsa Gardner (left) and chemist Thomas Midgley Jr. (right) from ‘Dayton’s Children’; photos: Mark Martel Few people know many of the technologies they use every day were invented in Dayton. Mark Martel wants to fix that. Martel published a history of the fascinating characters […]

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Wright State gets wired

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Hollywood composer starts college sound studio By Jim Hannah Photo: Composer Steve Hampton and his son designed the professional grade Wright State recording studio; photo: Erin Pence Wright State University now has a state-of-the art, professional-level recording studio thanks to noted Hollywood composer and Wright State alumnus Steve Hampton. The studio, which is housed in Benjamin […]

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Yeck, not yuck


Students mentor students in DAI’s Yeck Fellowship By Jimaur Calhoun Photo: Artwork (from left to right) created by Allison Parrish, Stephanie Tyson, Christa Cape, and Jessie Karlsberger; (group from left to right) Christa Cape, Jessie Karlsberger, Stephanie Tyson, and Allison Parrish taught high school students at the DAI; photos courtesy of the artists and Eric […]

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Too tough to die

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Richie Ramone brings back his own blitzkrieg to Bob’s by Gary Spencer Unless you’ve been cryogenically frozen like Han Solo or live under a rock, then you know who the Ramones are—NYC’s godfathers of punk, the band that changed the landscape of rock music when they released their eponymously-titled debut album in 1976 and went […]

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Sky of lights


Regional Fourth of July celebrations By Erin Callahan Photo: The Centerville Americana Festival celebrates 43 years July 4; photo courtesy of Centerville Americana Festival Friday, July 1 Kevin Sonnycalb Memorial  Fireworks Festival  Shawnee Park, 591 S. Park Drive in Xenia The festival honors Kevin Sonnycalb of Xenia and has brought the community together after the […]

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On the beat: 6/28/16

Light, camera, Jake Owen by Jim Bucher First of all, show of hands: how many of you experienced the Jake Owen concert at Fraze Friday night? Wow, lots of hands in the air. Know why? Jake sold out.  It was a beautiful Ohio evening, a little warm, but perfect for an outdoor concert. Plus, Owen […]

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Conspiracy Theorist: 6/28/16

Governments and religions should be measured by peace by Mark Ludetke Governments should be measured by the extent to which they limit aggression and promote peace, not by their form. The more aggression and violence employed by a state, the worse it is. The more governments reject aggression and promote peace, the better. Taxes, regulations, […]

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The St. Vincent de Paul relief mission continues


  Gateway Shelter for Women and Families on W. Apple St is ready to help 24-hours a day.  By Tim […]

Mulling the merits of Merit Grill


Wide variety compromised by some puzzling choices The Merit Grill’s Carne Asada substituted sirloin for skirt steak, but the salsa, […]

Bread Baking Demystified

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The secrets to a delicious loaf of bread are in the details The process of properly kneading bread dough includes […]

It’s happening in Troy


Jazz vocalist Vanessa Rubin Music at The Troy-Hayner Center The Troy-Hayner Cultural Center is welcoming the arrival of spring with […]

A tradition of storytelling

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Shannon McNally at Newport’s Southgate House Revival Singer-songwriter Shannon McNally By Dave Gil de Rubio Songwriting has always had a […]