The Hotel at Black Oak Casino Resort in CA

Weekly Events Thread 12/30/19 - 1/5/20

Please, feel free to add any events below! Check out the Events Calendar and Visitor's Guide for more info!

Looking to meet up with people? Check out Meetup St. Louis.

New Year's Eve Events



Sporting Events This Week
Attractions Around the Area
Recurring Outdoor Activities
Recurring Events on the Mississippi River
Comedy This Week
Live Music This Week
submitted by STLhistoryBuff to StLouis [link] [comments]

I wrote a new, updated, more comprehensive and neutral wiki for the sub, but I guess the mods didn't want it. Here's u/garethom's guide to Birmingham.

I sent this is in a message to the mods a little while back after seeing that the existing wiki was a little out of date, really centric to certain areas and tbh, not very neutral when it came to other areas. It's my no means the end of any recommendations, but considering we have a lot of questions about what to do/see/eat/drink and where to stay or live, I thought it might be helpful.
Anyway, I haven't got a response, and I'm not even sure if any of them are even still active here, so I thought I'd just drop it here and maybe somebody can get some use out of it anyway.
I'll clarify that outside of playing for one of the American football teams currently, and having previously played for another, I'm not affiliated with any organisation mentioned herein.

About Birmingham

Birmingham is the second city (don't listen to anything Manchester says!) of the United Kingdom. It is the largest and most populous city in the United Kingdom, as well as the centre of the second largest urban area after London, with a population somewhere between 1 and 1.3 million people.
Birmingham boomed from a non-descript market town to a juggernaut of a city during the Industrial Revolution in the late 1700s/early 1800s, and is called "the first manufacturing town in the world". Although the steam engine is Birmingham's most famous invention, did you know, that amongst hundreds of other things, we're also responsible for the birth of the modern chemical industry, cotton spinning, the Baskerville typeface, building societies, powdered custard, the modern postal system, medical plaster, lawn tennis, plastic, medical use of x-rays, The Lord of the Rings, and the Football League? Well now you do!
Today, we don't manufacture so much, but we're still an important city on the global stage. We're now a centre for both the public and private service industry, and one of the most important centres of finance in the country.
We form the centre of a metropolitan area, spanning from Solihull in the south east, to Wolverhampton and the Black Country in the north west, and we make up an interesting group of people. We're a city of younger than average people, and are the UK's most ethnically diverse city, with large numbers of immigrants from Ireland, South Asia, the Caribbean and China. This make up has majorly shaped the city we live in today.
Whether you're visiting for a day or two, or you're a born and bred Brummie, Birmingham is still a city that can amaze you.
And yes... it's true. We do have more canals than Venice.

Big Name Attractions

  • BBC Birmingham: Visitors can book tours of their working building that take you behind the scenes of their television and radio productions. There is also a visitor centre that doesn't require booking.
  • Botanical Gardens: A 15 acre selection of gardens and greenhouses containing some of the world's rarest (and in some cases, entirely unique) plants. There are also a number of exotic birds.
  • Cadbury World: The world famous chocolate manufacturer was founded in Bournville. There are exhibits on the history of chocolate, the making of chocolate, the story of the Cadbury family, and if you hadn't guessed by now, a massive Cadbury shop.
  • LegoLand Discovery Centre: A newly-opened, kid centric day out based entirely on the world famous, colourful bricks.
  • Library of Birmingham: This striking building opened in 2013 is the largest public library in the United Kingdom, and the largest "public cultural space" in Europe and hosts a number of nationally and internationally significant collections.
  • National Sea Life Centre: Even with our extensive canal network, perhaps not the most appropriate location, but still... A giant aquarium with a range of sea and river life, from sharks, to penguins, to otters.
  • Sarehole Mill: A working water mill that has played a significant park in the history of both the industry and literature of Birmingham. Matthew Boulton, one of the fathers of the industrial revolution performed experiments there, and Lord of the Rings author, J. R. R. Tolkien lived just a stones throw from the mill. It is located in the Shire Country Park, named for its influence on the location of that name in the aforementioned books.
  • Thinktank: A family-oriented science experience with a focus on Birmingham's manufacturing and industrial history. You can see real WWII era aircraft, steam trains, and the world's oldest working steam engine. There's also a planetarium.

Smaller Attractions

  • Aston Hall: The "leading example of the Jacobean prodigy house" has a storied local history, from the Civil War-era onwards.
  • Back to Backs: The "city's last surviving court of back-to-back houses". Get a feel for life amongst the common folk of the city during the population boom of the Industrial Revolution.
  • Blakesley Hall: One of the oldest buildings in the city, and an archetypal example of Tudor architecture, originally owned by the famed Smalbroke family.
  • Coffin Works: A restored factory that historically manufactured brass fittings, and, you guessed it, coffins, including those of famed statesmen and members of the royal family.
  • Museum of the Jewellery Quarter: Step inside a "'time capsule' of a jewellery workshop" and learn about the 200+ year history of the Jewellery Quarter.
  • Pen Museum: The only museum dedicated to the pen trade in the UK, learn how Birmingham became the heart of the world pen industry.
  • Selly Manor: Originally the manor house of Bournbrook, it was acquired by the Cadbury family in the early 1900s and moved to be the heart of their model village, Bournville.
  • Soho House: A large house containing primarily a celebration of the life of famed industrialist Matthew Boulton and his peers in the Lunar Society.
  • Winterbourne House & Garden: A seven acre botanic garden of the University of Birmingham.

Food & Drink

Birmingham is a city quickly gaining a world-class reputation for food, with an exploding independent scene backed up by an enviable selection of fine dining options.
Fine Dining You may have heard that Birmingham has more Michelin-starred restaurants than any UK city outside of London, and that's (sort of, if you're including Solihull) true!
With five (strictly four) restaurants boasting a star, Birmingham has plenty for those desiring a fine dining experience.
Purnell's, ran by regular TV face Glyn Purnell, and Adam's are both located in the city centre. Simpsons is just a mile-and-a-bit outside the centre in leafy Edgbaston, and Carters of Moseley is just a little further out, in, well, Moseley. The most recently awarded star goes to Peel's, located in the Hampton Manor hotel in Hampton in Arden, a quick drive from Birmingham Airport.
But it's not all about those famous stars. There's also several restaurants that make the Michelin Guide. Asha's (Indian), Opus (European), The Wilderness (British/European), Lasan (Indian), Waters (European), The Boot Inn (European/Fusion), Opheem (Indian), Folium (British/European), and Harborne Kitchen (British/European) are all places you're almost guaranteed some good eating!
Street Food & Independents While the Michelin-club get all the plaudits, many prefer Birmingham's proud independent food scene for a cheaper, more relaxed meal.
The jewel in the crown is Digbeth Dining Club. The now three-day-a-week event sees an area in Digbeth in the centre of Birmingham closed off and populated by some of the countries finest streetfood vendors for a festival of food, drink and music. Many of the regulars have been crowned winners of something in the various country-wide streetfood competitions in recent years, and you'll get anything from Indian snacks, decadent waffles, slow cooked BBQ, and mouth-watering cheesecakes to award winning burgers. Additionally, in a very similar vein, is the much more recent Hawker Yard.
Looking for a burger? You're in luck. There's Original Patty Men (who are so renowned, Drake opted to miss out on the Brit Awards to eat their burgers) and The Meat Shack both located in the city centre that make some of the best burgers you'll ever taste, and have a great selection of beers to go with them.
Thanks to the city's impressive Chinatown, you're guaranteed some good authentic Chinese food. Our recommendation? Head to Peach Garden or Look In and order a selection of roasted meats (just look for the hanging ducks in the window, you won't miss them!)
Perhaps Birmingham's most world famous offering to the culinary world is the Balti. Named for the thin-pressed steel dish it's served in more than any particular method of cooking, the Balti is a garlic and onion heavy curry that is cooked over high heat, rather than simmering all day. If that sounds enticing to you, then I've got good news.
Birmingham is famed for the Balti Triangle, an area around Sparkbook, Sparkhill and Moseley that has an eye-wateringly high concentration of restaurants serving Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi food, almost all of which serving many variations of the eponymous dish. While the Balti may have spread across the entirety of the UK, it's well known that Birmingham still has the best. Looking for a recommendation? Check out Adil's, the place that lays perhaps the strongest claim to creating the dish in the first place or Al Frash. We're also locked into an ongoing battle with Glasgow as to which city created the creamy, mild curry, the Chicken Tikka Masala. Added bonus? Many of the city's balti houses are BYOB.
Outside of those mentioned, there really is something for those that want something a little different. The Karczma serves authentic Polish food in amazing decor. Bonehead is the place to go for fried chicken. If you're not feeling a full three course balti, Zindiya offers amazing Indian street food. Loaf is a co-operatively ran bakery and cookery school that offer literally the best sausage rolls in the world. Whatever cuisine takes your fancy, you will find a restaurant in Birmingham cooking it to the highest quality.
If there's anything that will force you to make plans to visit Birmingham again, it's the food.
Drinking And what d'you know, it's not just great food here, but great drink too!
In the city centre, you're spoiled for choice. There's a Brewdog bar, serving a range of beers from the eponymous brewery alongside a smorgasbord of guest brewers. Just opposite is Cherry Reds (they also have a location in Kings Heath), serving craft beers in a cafe atmosphere. Located in a former, guess what, the Post Office Vaults invites you to take a look through their "Beer Bible" and select from hundreds of beers from around the world. Purecraft serves beers from the renowned Purity Brewing Company, and the food is amazing too.
Around what was formerly a financial district, you'll find a lot of popular bars in attractive buildings, such as The Old Joint Stock, The Lost and Found and The Cosy Club. In the Jewellery Quarter, you'll find the reasonably priced 1000 Trades (usually with a pop-up dishing out great food) and further afield, the Plough in Harborne.
Cocktails more your thing? You won't miss out. The Alchemist, Fumo, Ginger's and Gas Street Social all serve proper cocktails in trendy atmospheres.
On the same street in Stirchley and Cotteridge, you will find two of the countries highest-rated off-licences. Cotteridge Wines has been voted The Best Bottle Shop in England for five years running, and Stirchley Wines, just a few minutes walk away, is held in similarly high regard. Both have been listed in RateBeer's top four locations in the country.

Sport

Birmingham is famous as a sporting city. The Football League, the world's first league football competition, was founded in 1888 by Birmingham resident, and Aston Villa director William McGregor.
Along with the aforementioned Aston Villa, Birmingham is also home to another of the oldest football teams in the country, Birmingham City. Birmingham City's Ladies play at the top level of Women's football. The football season runs between August and May.
Edgbaston Cricket Ground is home to Warwickshire County Cricket Club, but is also more prominently used for Test matches, One Day Internationals and Twenty20 Internationals. The County Cricket season runs between April and September. The Twenty20 season runs between July and September.
Birmingham and the nearby areas are home to two PGA standard golf courses; The Belfry, which has hosted the Ryder Cup more than any other venue, and the Forest of Arden, a regular host of tournaments on the PGA European Tour.
Arena Birmingham, formerly known as the National Indoor Arena, has hosted a number of World and European indoor athletics championships, and the Alexander Stadium in Perry Barr is the headquarters of UK Athletics, and the home of the Birchfield Harriers, which counts a number of elite international athletes amongst its members.
The first ever game of lawn tennis was played in Birmingham in 1859 and the Birmingham Classic, played annually at the Edgbaston Priory Club is one of only three UK tennis tournaments on the WTA Tour.
There are two professional Rugby Union teams in Birmingham and the surrounding areas. Moseley Rugby Football Club play in the National League 1, and Birmingham & Solihull Pertemps Bees play in the Midlands Premier division. The Rugby Union season typically runs between September and April.
Birmingham is also home to the oldest British American football team, the Birmingham Bulls and the most successful team in University American football, the Birmingham Lions at the University of Birmingham. The Tamworth Phoenix, the current BAFA National League champions, are located in nearby Coleshill, and the Sandwell Steelers are located in the Black Country. The BAFA National Leagues season typically runs between April and August and the University season typically runs between October and January.
The Birmingham Bandits play in the National Baseball League, the top level of competition in the country. The season typically runs between April and August.
Birmingham will host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Entertainment

Film For those that want to catch a movie, there is, as you might expect, a range of chain cinemas in dozens of locations across the city in which you can catch the latest release.
But if you're looking for something really special? Why not check out The Electric, the UK's oldest working cinema?
Of course, they show the latest blockbusters, but they also show classic movies and special events throughout the year.
Music Whatever your preference, there's a good bet that Birmingham has had an impact.
We have the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra playing at the Symphony Hall for those with a more refined ear.
There are regular jazz festivals across the city and surroundings through the year.
Perhaps you've heard of the small time bands Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Led Zeppelin and Napalm Death? Birmingham is the home to metal, and it's an influence that is still obvious today. You'll find local bands playing the full spectrum of metal at music pubs across the city.
If you want to check out a band on tour, we've got arenas that range in size from the huge (Arena Birmingham, Genting Arena) to the more modest (Hare & Hounds, HMV Institute) and those in-between (O2 Academy).
Theatre The Repertory Theatre is the UK's longest-established "producing theatre" and the Alexandra and Hippodrome are the go-to places to see shows on tour.
Those looking for a particularly classy night out can choose from the Birmingham Royal Ballet, resident at the Hippodrome, or the Birmingham Opera Company, known for their avant garde performances in non-typical spaces.
Museums & Galleries Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery is the big one. A notable collection of Pre-Raphaelite work and the Staffordshire Hoard are probably the stand outs that it's known for, but there's a temporary exhibition space that hosts events like student exhibitions from local universities.
The Barber Institute of Fine Arts is located on the campus of the University of Birmingham, and was one of only five galleries outside London to receive five stars for having "Outstanding collections of international significance", and this relatively modest sized gallery hosts works by the likes of Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Auguste Rodin and J. M. W. Turner and has one of the world's largest coin collections.
If contemporary art is more your thing, then the Ikon Gallery in Brindley Place is for you, hosting rotating exhibitions throughout the year.
The mac, located in Cannon Hill Park is an art gallery with rotating exhibitions that also hosts plays, concerts and film showings.
For further Museums & Galleries see the "Attractions" section.
Nightlife As a young city, there's plenty of places in the city to while the night away.
Broad Street is Birmingham's most well known area. It's a long street with very popular, relatively "bog-standard" bars and clubs, with large dancefloors and loud, popular music. PRYZM is the largest nightclub in the city, and Grosvenor Casino, open 24 hours, is nearby.
You'll most likely find single 18-25 year olds along this busy street just a few minutes walk from the very centre of the city.
Birmingham's Gay Village is also well established, with Nightingales being arguably the biggest name. Nearby, the Arcadian hosts a number of smaller bars and clubs.
The Jewellery Quarter offers more intimate nightlife options, and you're more likely to find a slightly older clientele sipping cocktails and listening to live bands than on their feet on a dancefloor.
Digbeth is where the cool people go in search of more underground fare. DJs and producers playing House, Techno (including the world famous "Birmingham Sound"), Dubstep, Garage and Drum & Bass congregate in the clubs in this area, catering to those that are happy to go all night. If you want to go even further off the beaten track, check out PST where you're likely to find Listening Sessions, showcasing a range of music from local producers.
Shopping The Bullring is the major shopping centre in Birmingham. It is one of Europe's largest and houses just one of four Selfridges department stores, housed in an iconic building. There are a number of stores selling fashion, cosmetics, toys and gifts and food.
The Bull Ring markets see 140 stallholders offering fresh fruit and vegetables, meats and fish, and basically every non-food item you can think of.
The Jewellery Quarter is Europe's largest concentration of businesses involved in the jewellery trade, which produces 40% of all the jewellery made in the UK.
The Great Western Arcade is a Grade II listed row of shops that cater almost entirely to independent retailers where you're almost guaranteed to find something unique.

Weather

We're a relatively temperate city, in that it rarely gets super cold, and rarely gets super hot. In the summer months, you can expect a twenty four hour swing from around 11°C(52°F) to 23°C(73°F), and in the winter months, anywhere between 0°C(32°F) and 7°C(45°F).
We get roughly 10-13 rainy days per month throughout the year.
Compared to other UK cities, we are relatively snowy, due to our inland position and high elevation, however, it rarely snows to a degree that it causes problems.

Environment

Birmingham is, perhaps surprisingly given its unfair reputation, an outstandingly green city. We have a stunning 571 parks in the city, more than any other European city.
Sutton Park is the biggest park in the city, and is Europe's largest urban park outside of a capital city. Around a quarter of the former Royal Forest is covered by ancient woodlands, and there are a number of large ponds and pools. It is relatively common to see deer and exmoor ponies in the less busy parts of the park. There are several sporting events held in the park throughout the year.
The Lickey Hills are home to a Green Flag awarded country park that offer picturesque views of the city of Birmingham, and are home to several species of deer, badgers and around ninety bird species, and some believe this favoured haunt of J. R. R. Tolkien formed the inspiration for the Shire in his famed The Lord Of The Rings series.
Cannon Hill Park is a 250 acre area consisting of woodland, grassland and several large ponds. There are areas for soccer, boating, fishing, tennis and mini-golf.

Travel

Due to its centralised location, Birmingham is well placed for transport. It is served by the M5, M6 (famed for the Gravelly Hill Interchange, more commonly known as Spaghetti Junction), M40 and M42 motorways.
Birmingham Airport (actually located in Solihull), is an international airport, with flights to and from to many destinations in Europe, North America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
Birmingham New Street is the largest railway station outside of London and serves locations across the country. Snow Hill and Moor Street act as the northern termini for trains coming from London Marylebone.
Buses are mainly administered by National Express, and the West Midlands bus route 11, also known as the Birmingham Outer Circle, is the longest urban bus route in Europe at 27 miles, taking around three hours to complete.
Uber operates within Birmingham.

Living In Birmingham

Many times we're asked here on brum "where should I live", "is area X ok to live in", etc. Much like everything else in Birmingham, there is a lot of variety. Houses can range from cheap as chips to pretty expensive, and each area of the city has its own up and downsides. It's not so easy to divide Birmingham by distinct areas of desirability, and some of the most expensive and sought after suburbs border those that aren't as popular.

Central Birmingham

Living in central Birmingham will be similar to living in the centre of any other big city, if you've ever done that. There will always be something to do on right on your doorstep, the social opportunities are immense, and your commute can be but a short walk to the office. Of course, this is often at the expense of a smaller, more expensive property, greater noise and everywhere is pretty busy 24/7. There are a number of distinct "regions" in the city centre.
Brindley Place & Surrounding Areas Likely the priciest part of the city centre to live in, but there are often more than small flats available. Penthouses, townhouses and large apartments are more common in this area.
Average property price: Anywhere from ~£150,000 to £1m+ Brindley Place on Streetcheck
Digbeth An area still undergoing gentrification, but also a focal point for up and coming independents in business, food, arts and culture. Most, if not all, properties in Digbeth will be flats. Most of Digbeth is a five minute walk to the centre of the city.
Average property price: £158,024 Digbeth on Streetcheck
Jewellery Quarter Great for food and drink, the Jewellery Quarter, while still a stronghold in the UK jewellery industry, is fast becoming one of the "cooler" areas to live in the city. Most, if not all, properties in the Jewellery Quarter will be flats.
Average property price: ~£200,000-250,000 Jewellery Quarter on Streetcheck

North Birmingham

North Birmingham has a large swing in terms of lifestyle. Some areas closer to the city centre are more economically deprived, whereas further away, the likes of Sutton Coldfield can boast some of the most expensive and most desirable locations in the Midlands. The transport links are, to some, an attraction to living in North Birmingham, usually being just minutes from several junctions on the M6 and M5.
Aston Aston as a settlement is very old, and has a real mix of history, ranging from the medieval to Jacobean to early 1900s. Most properties in Aston are terraced houses.
Average property price: £107,137 Aston on Streetcheck
Erdington Lying between the city centre and it's more expensive neighbour, Erdington is fast becoming a desirable location for those priced out of Sutton Coldfield. There is a range of properties from detached housing to flats.
Average property price: £163,075 Erdington on Streetcheck
Handsworth An "on the rise" area that can boast perhaps the longest list of famous residents in the whole city. There are a wide range of properties from detached housing to terraced houses.
Average property price: £144,484 Handsworth on Streetcheck
Sutton Coldfield A "Royal Town" and the fourth-least deprived area in the country, Sutton Coldfield is renowned as a very affluent area with many attractions. There are a range of properties from terraced houses to very large detached houses.
Average property price: £314,808 although houses can and do regularly top £3m+ Sutton Coldfield on Streetcheck

East Birmingham

East Birmingham is home to a diverse population, and a relatively green area stretching from the city centre to neighbouring Solihull, and is quickly finding itself a niche as younger folk priced out of Solihull move to a desirable location between the leafy town and Birmingham's centre.
Bordesley Green Traditionally an area popular with immigrants, and mostly consists of terraced houses.
Average property price: £122,712 Bordesley Green on Streetcheck
Stechford Mostly terraced housing with a tonne of local ameneties and is cut almost in two by the River Cole and has a large nature reserve running through it.
Average property price: £150,085 Stechford on Streetcheck
Yardley & Sheldon An historically old suburb of Birmingham, with a dedicated conservation area and many local ameneties. There are a range of properties from detached houses to a small number of flats and apartments.
Average property price: £162,601 Yardley & Sheldon on Streetcheck

South Birmingham

The south of Birmingham is home to some of the "coolest" suburbs that are quickly gaining popularity, seated between the city centre and what you might call "countryside" towards Warwickshire.
Hall Green Encompassing much of the Tolkien trail, this suburb borders Shirley in Solihull.
Average property price: £209,923 Hall Green on Streetcheck
Kings Heath, Stirchley and Cotteridge These three closely related suburbs are quickly becoming seen as an affordable alternative to Moseley.
Average property price: £211,276 Kings Heath on Streetcheck
Moseley With a real "village" feel, there are many renowned drinking holes and eateries, with a large range of property types.
Average property price: £276,533 Moseley on Streetcheck
Sparkhill Home to a large population of immigrants, it's not surprising that Sparkhill is home to much of the famed "Balti Triangle". Most of the properties are terraced houses.
Average property price: £142,394 Sparkhill on Streetcheck

West Birmingham

As you move away from the city centre towards the Black Country, you'll come across some of the city's most sought-after locations for both young and old alike.
Edgbaston A very affluent suburb that is also home to much of the University of Birmingham campus. There are a number of very large houses, but also a large number of flats and terraced houses. Houses can and do regularly go for £1m+
Average property price: £301,851 Edgbaston on Streetcheck
Harborne A Victorian-era suburb with a large amount of terraced and semi-detached housing, located between Edgbaston and Quinton.
Average property price: £278,266 Harbone on Streetcheck
Selly Oak The majority of residents in this suburb are students at Birmingham's universities. As such, it has many transport links to the city centre. Most of the properties are terraced houses.
Average property price: £221,046 Selly Oak on Streetcheck
Quinton This green suburb basically forms the very western border of the city before you enter Sandwell and Dudley. Most properties are semi-detached.
Average property price: £258,077 Quinton on Streetcheck

Outside the city

Birmingham is part of the greater West Midlands conurbation, so it can be used as a hub for exploring the region easily.
Solihull is situated on the south-eastern edge of Birmingham. Solihull is an affluent town with a mid-sized town centre, and a number of smaller villages located more rurally.
Coventry can be reached via the M6 or A45, and is roughly a half an hour to fourty minute drive from the city centre.
Stratford-Upon-Avon, famed for being the home of William Shakespeare, is located roughly an hour away from the city centre.
Warwick, the home of Warwick Castle, is located near Royal Leamington Spa, and is about an hour by car from the city centre.
The Cotswolds, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, can be quickly reached, anywhere from one to two hours away from the city centre.
Worcester and the Malvern Hills, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, can be reached via the M5, around an hour and a half from the city centre.
On the western edge of the city, the Black Country, consisting of Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton can be found.
Further out west, the Shropshire Hills, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty can be found.
To the north of the city, Cannock Chase, a large, heavily wooded Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is located.
submitted by garethom to brum [link] [comments]

I smoked crack while I survived Hurricane Katrina.

A sea of suffering called me from her shores. I answered her call, charted a course for the unknown and swam out. No more a child playing in the gentle break of the surf, I was the sole survivor of a shipwrecked life. There was mutiny, fire and disasters of every kind before the hull broke in half and the depths swallowed my life whole. I was lost at sea where only sea monsters survived, and since it is better to eat than to be eaten, I became one.
It is true that I survived Hurricane Katrina with my father in New Orleans, and that before our two months together were over, he threatened to shoot me with a nine-millimeter. But before I tell you about that, I need a few paragraphs to tell you about my girlfriend from high school, and that whole thing starts with a large shipment of blotter acid, printed with pink elephants. Supposedly it came from the Lavender family, whatever that meant, and it made an unlikely couple out of us.
My family and I were out of town for Christmas break of my senior year, but I can't remember where we went. I think it was Mexico, and while we were gone, the captain of the cheerleading team took some of that acid with two of my friends. They tried to come see me, but since we were out of town, they couldn’t. Somehow their journey to find me and my absence mixed with the LSD to simulate feelings of love and longing for me in her. When I got back, this girl I barely knew wanted to hang out with me. She was the head cheerleader for her junior and senior years, made good grades and loved her mother. I skateboarded, slept through classes, resented the preppy kids, and wore skulls on my black tee shirt.
Towards the end of our relationship, I stole 200 dollars from our friend and disappeared for 24 hours with her vehicle, until I came back and we screamed at each other. Later she dropped me off at my parents’ house, and I hurled my cellphone at the pavement in the driveway under the oak tree. Its bark bloodied my knuckles, and it felt like some bones might be broken in my hands and wrist. Inside of the house my parents and I screamed before they told me to leave and locked me out. They called the police. I stuck my fist through the window in a door on the front porch and turned the old knob to let myself in. When the cops showed up I was eating a hot dog.
“Put the hot dog down! You are under arrest!”
But it didn’t start out like that for us. The first time we hung out, I took two of those pink elephants, and the Jimi Hendrix coming out of her speakers caused my brains to leak out of my eyes and nose and puddle itself in an awkward Technicolor mess on my shirt. She kept her cool and comforted me as I tried to clean it up. We rode to school every morning after that and knew each other in ways that no one else did. The girl shed tears over my addiction and wrote privately in a journal about how much she loved me when we went out.
After the overdose that I have already told you about and the episode with Stanky, besides the rest of our miserable 18 months together, she had enough. She moved on, and the break up played in my head over and over again. It left a smoldering heap of twisted metal and mental torment like a train wreck of my own emotions and the memories we created together. I staggered. I struggled to breathe. I fell to my knees as images of her smile and the love she once held in her eyes faded away from in front of me like smoke slowly dissipating or the mirage of a desert oasis, I would never reach.
I punched myself in the face until I had two black eyes. I called her 50 times a day. I wrote a poem to tell her how pathetic I was and left it on her windshield in a psychotic spider's web of scotch of tape while she was at work once, but I never got her back. I lost her forever, and I only had myself to blame.
Anyway, that gives you an idea of how things were going for me around the time that Katrina came to town, but I should also tell you about the job my uncle gave me. It was delivering trays of medical instruments and every kind of orthopedic implant to different hospitals for the company representatives and the surgeons they did business with. I disappeared into the ghetto in the middle of a delivery one afternoon and would not answer my phone. Somehow the 70,000 dollars’ worth of medical equipment ended up where it was supposed to go, but I disappeared to my friends’ house that night. In the morning my uncle called to tell me he didn’t want me to give up on life.
My cell phones never had a voice mail message, but if they did, it would have said something like, “Hi, you’ve reached Riley. I’m not able to take your call right now, because I am smoking crack. Leave your name and number, and I’ll be sure to ignore it, until I need something from you. Thanks.” That brings us right up to the account of the hurricanne, because my friends only let me stay with them for a few days before they evacuated. My mom picked me up from their house and took me home to help my dad board up the windows. I stayed with my grandmother and Uncle after that.
The night before Katrina made landfall my cousin and I watched the satellite footage of the huge storm bearing down on the gulf coast just below New Orleans. My uncle had rented hotel rooms for his ex-wife, my cousins, my grandmother and me, and during the storm, the windows cracked on the 21st floor of the Lowes Hotel across from Harrah’s Casino. Raindrops could be seen ripping through the city in the currents of wind pushing through the streets, and the wire and plaster materials used to construct the exterior of other buildings fluttered in the air like pieces of tissue. There seemed to be a kind of divine wrath being poured out onto the city. At least that’s what people were saying, because there had been seven senseless and violent murders in one night just before the storm.
Management fed us and moved us down to the 15th floor to another room, but the water didn’t work. Eventually the storming stopped, and we made phone calls to people we cared about. I tried to call the girl whose house I slept at before she evacuated and was happy to talk to her. After that I called my mom.
“Riley! The levees broke! I need you to come get me from the house and bring me back to the hotel.”
“Okay. Is poppa coming?”
“No. He has too many animals at the clinic. I tried to talk him into it, but I don’t think he will come.”
“Okay. Well I should probably stay with him.”
“Yeah. I think that would be best but come get me and bring me back to the hotel, please.”
My grandmother let me take her Camry to get my mom from the house, and I went up Tchoupitoulas to get there and remember the feeling the houses gave me. They were abandoned and desperate and vulnerable prey to the looters and pillagers running around the city. Once I picked my mother up at the house and headed back to the Lowe’s Hotel down St. Charles, men hung halfway out of cars they did not own and sweated trying to get them started. All storefront windows had holes smashed into them, but everything inside was already gone.
Our dog had puppies during the storm, and my dad told me about how he went outside to see what it was like and got locked out. My mom couldn’t hear him knocking so he was out there for over an hour in the rain and wind. We slept on the roof of the front porch that first night, but somebody at the hotel had given me some Xanax. I had 20 dollars in my pocket and decided that I would sneak out the front of the house and take the Camry to go smoke crack.
He flashed his light on me from the front porch roof as I started the Camry and took off into the dark. No automobiles made any noise in the streets, and not one streetcar ran up or down the tracks. Telephone poles lay on the ground with their power lines tangled in messes of large live oak limbs that covered St. Charles Avenue from one end to the other. It was a dangerous prospect taking off like that into the desolate city in a small car, and it was almost impossible to get the Camry from Palmer Avenue all the way to ghetto by the parish line, but I did it.
When I got to the ghetto by Leake Avenue and Oak everyone in the neighborhood converged in the streets. An atmosphere of panic hovered over us, and they walked around with the energetic fear of bees in a hive worried they would perish. Water came out of the drains and pooled in the streets. There was a man carrying a large box fan on his shoulder in the crowd, and he had the twitch in his walk that I was looking for. I flagged him down, and he ran over to the car.
“What’s up, wodee?”
“Looking for a 20.”
“I got you. Let me put this in the car.”
He put the fan into the back seat of my grandmother’s Camry and took my 20 into a house. Historic buildings across town lay in heaps of ashes smoldering, and other buildings waited to be consumed by fire or looted. A deluge of black water destroyed whole neighborhoods where families once lived and kids once played. Pandemonium swept across the city. Those who remained realized that our beloved New Orleans was drowning, and it looked like the city might never recover even if it survived this catastrophe. I sat in the car waiting for the crack head to come back with my crack rock, and my father sat on the front porch roof of our house wondering if I would come back with the car or get killed trying to smoke crack in the chaos.
I lost the hit in the car before I could smoke it. There was nothing I could do to recover it, so I got out and tried to cut a deal with a guy who desperately needed gas. He said he would help me out, and we tried to siphon gas out of the car, but it didn’t work. Since I tried to help he waved his friend off who followed us around and looked like he had his hand on a pistol in his waistband. When I got back to the house my father gave me a Tylenol PM and begged me to sleep.
In the morning the crack had worn off, and we began to navigate our stay in post Katrina New Orleans. We parked the Camry at his clinic in Jefferson Parish and rode around in the old Landcruiser. Sometimes we picked up the displaced people walking up and down St. Charles and took them to Oschner Hospital. There was one lady who carried a bunch of cat carriers with frizzy, frazzled hair and looked like she had lived her life as a recluse in one of the nearby neighborhoods, but the flood brought her out. When we stopped and asked her if she wanted a ride or needed help she just turned around and walked the other direction. Sometimes we got calls at my dad’s clinic from people who wanted us to break into their houses and rescue their animals, so we did.
At night we tried to sleep outside, because it was so hot. Mosquitoes hung around us in softly humming clouds and bit hard even through sheets drenched in Adam’s Flea and Tick Spray. I tried to cook some steaks over a fire but had caked the seasoned salt on them in the dark so badly that we could barely eat them. There was a silence that filled the air and gave us a dread we had never known about the future of our lives.
The destruction of the city matched the broken emptiness inside of me. It was fitting for me to be there and see it all. Not that either one directly caused the other, but the dire straits of the city mirrored the reality of my own insides. My childhood pediatrician hung himself over the city’s devastation, while my father focused on the litter of puppies our Italian greyhound had to get through it. As if everything happening at the time wasn’t enough stress for him, I gave him hell by smoking crack, stealing money and getting violent.
I found my sister’s Adderall prescription and took the whole thing at once. Then I chugged warm beers we had until I couldn’t talk or sleep, and I smoked crack with a pimply skinned lady and her boyfriend in a crumbling apartment building called the Studio Arms by Oschner Hospital. On the way back home the cops stopped me for being out after curfew but let me go.
We made trips to the house in Orleans Parish during the days and shot the trunk of a magnolia tree with the 9-millimeter out of boredom once. Two members of the National Guard robbed the house while we slept at the clinic. Both were arrested and received dishonorable discharges.
After a month my dad got me a job with a contractor who lived in Harahan, and on our first job we demolished the insides of a man’s house, whose wife had just divorced him and left with his daughters a few weeks before the storm. We carted mildewed art projects made of construction paper and Elmer’s glue and photo albums in wheelbarrows out through the front door and into a dumpster. Every single memory he had of his daughters’ childhoods had fallen under the chalky brown water line a foot below the ceiling. The man sweated and took pictures hoping that his insurance company might pay him for his losses, for the things that have no price. I quit after a week.
Sometime towards the end of our time together in the shambles of a post-Katrina New Orleans my dad got on the phone to help me get the 2300 dollars FEMA gave to survivors of Katrina, and after that I got into it with my dad. It was over something stupid, but I got him in a headlock and rammed the top of his skull into the corner of a doorway behind the clinic. We struggled for a few minutes before we stopped, and he said,
“You attack me like that again, Riley, and I’m gonna shoot you. You hear me?”
I knew he meant it, and he would have been right to do it with the way I acted. It reminded me of the time he told me he wanted to fight me as a teenager but remembered how much he paid for my teeth to be straight. I tore off in the Landcruiser up to Baton Rouge where I stayed with my mom and sisters at my grandmother’s until I could figure out what to do.
Eventually, my mother and I devised the plan for me to go live in California, with my friends who had all moved out to San Francisco and planned to grow weed. They needed another roommate to make it work, so I told them I would be out there soon. My mom bought a ticket, but it would be a week or so before I could fly out. In that last week, my friend stole a car and picked me up in the middle of the night. By the time the sun came up we were trying to buy some crack in the ghetto with a fake 100-dollar bill, but when the dealer wanted the rocks back I rolled onto my back and kicked him in the face and ground his fingers under my heel before he fell out of the back seat. We may have run over him, but we definitely drove into a ditch before we escaped. All the while the kid in the back seat next to me snored and had a strand of drool hanging from his lip to the floor and his head between his legs. My mom had to come get me out of a crack house the morning of my flight to San Francisco, and my father hadn’t talked to me since we’d fought last.
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Happening in Indiana: July 22nd - 28th

My computer had a mini heart attack last night and I wasn't about to do this on a cellphone... So here's the latest happenings with a slight delay!
All my information comes from VisitIndiana so the list is not 100% comprehensive. If you know of anything that's missing, please post and share with everyone! If you've ever been to any of these events, or if you go this week, please share your experiences
Also be sure to visit the city-specific subreddits
This Week Only
Northwest Indiana
Ouibache Music Festival - July 27, 730-930pm, at Delphi Opera House. This quintet of locally grown musicians formed in 2000 celebrating American Roots music with a flair for jazz and anything else. Proceeds from the concert will benefit the missions of the Ouibache Music Festival and the Delphi Opera House
Old Lighthouse Museum S.S. Eastland Memorial - July 27 at the Old Lighthouse Museum. At 11am, the 104th Anniversary Memorial of the S.S. Eastland will commence, Station Michigan City Coast Guard will place a wreath in Trail Creek where Indiana Transportations dock was located. Father Lev of the Holy Trinity Orthodox Church will say memorial prayers. Speakers will tell the horrific story of the Eastland tragedy. WEFM 95.9 live radio will be at the museum from 9am-noon. The museum will be open free of charge today only from noon-4pm.
Gatsby at the Gardens - July 27, 6-9pm, at Friendship Botanic Gardens. Step into a Great Gatsby Garden Party! Enjoy a speakeasy evening set in the 1920's. Stroll the gardens, sip some giggle water, play bocce or badminton or cut the rug while listening to live jazz. $45; 21+event
Main St. Tour & Taste of White - July 26, 500-1130pm, at Downtown Monticello. Concert-style music and delicious food/beverages. You won't want to miss this night of entertainment!
New Carlisle Hometown Days - July 26-28 at 300 E Michigan St. New Carlisle Hometown Days is a 3 day family fun-filled weekend. Friday night we offer fireworks, parade on Sat, car show, famous wiffleball contest, kiddie tractor pull, bouncy houses, games, various vendors, food and entertainment.
Downtown Tractor Show - July 27, 8am-3pm, at 124 N. Michigan St. The streets of Downtown Plymouth will be filled with Tractors, Garden Tractors, Pedal Tractors and Hit-n-Miss Engines! There will also be food trucks with yummy treats to purchase. Autumn Leed and the River City Band will be playing from 12:00 pm til 2:00 pm. This is a FREE, family-friendly event!
Jasper County Fair - July 20-27 at the Jasper County Fairgrounds on State Road 114. The annual fair includes rides, games, demolition derby, food vendors, craft vendors and more!
U.S. Military All-Star Baseball Game - July 22, 7-10pm, at Oil City Stadium. The U.S. Military All-Stars will return to Northwest Indiana for a stop on this year’s Red, White & Blue Tour as they continue the mission of promoting the awareness of all Americans in support of the honorable sacrifices our armed forces make. The team is comprised of active duty servicemen from all branches of service around the world.
25th Annual Pierogi Fest - July 26-28 throughout Whiting. Taking place in Whiting, Indiana, Pierogi Fest® celebrates Eastern European food and culture with a wacky familial twist. Pierogi Fest® welcomes all to celebrate Eastern European heritage while poking a little fun at the same time.
Festival of Magic - July 26-28 at the Aftermath Cidery and Winery. Join Aftermath Cidery and Winery for a family-friendly trip to everyone's favorite boarding school! Visit all locations on your map to complete the scavenger hunt and win a prize: Hogwarts, Diagon Alley, King's Cross, the Leaky Barrel, and more! Each location will offer both Adult Potions and drinks for Little Wizards and Witches
Northeast Indiana
Park-inn Movies: The Sandlot - July 25, 930-1130pm, at Potawatomi Inn. Bring your blanket or lawn chair to the lawn overlooking Lake James. Admission is free to Inn Guests, Campground Guests and with paid admission to Pokagon State Park. (Weather Permitting).
Auburn Downtown Cruise-In - July 25, 530-800pm, at Courthouse Square. Join classic car enthusiasts around Courthouse Square downtown. See restored cars and other special vehicles of interest at this free event. Bring your family and stroll the streets, shop, have dinner in one of our local restaurants. There will be door prizes and a Crew's Choice Award for the most popular car. All show vehicles should arrive no earlier than 5:30 pm. Please enter at the corner of 7th & Cedar in order to check in and receive registration forms. All Cruise In's are held in Downtown Auburn around the square (Cedar, 9th, and Main.)
Berne Swiss Days - July 25-27 throughout Berne. The Swiss Day Celebration is a time for Berne to share it’s heritage with authentic Swiss costume, great food, craft vendors and merchandise. Residents and visitors alike enjoy the friendly competitions for all ages. From the 5K race to Big Wheel Competition for the younger ones to the Steintoss, there is something for everyone. On stage and around the festival you can hear Swiss music. Watch as couples dance the polka to live music on stage.
Allen County Fair - July 23-28 at the Allen County Fairgrounds. We welcome families to the 30th Annual Allen County Fair July 23rd to July 28th at the Allen County Fairgrounds, located off Carroll Road in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The 2019 Allen County Fair is home to Allen County 4-H and features many animal shows, projects and events throughout the week. In addition to 4-H festivities, the fair offers a full food court, carnival rides, and lengthily list of family-fun events. Highlighted events include: free ice cream social, hot air balloon fight/glow, 4X4 truck pull, demo derbies, kids day, live music, peddle truck races and much more.
Fort Wayne Pride Fest - July 26-27 at Headwaters Park. The two day event features live entertainment, vendor market, a beer tent, food plaza, workshops, tournaments, KidSpace and fun with the community! There are a variety of opportunities available for businesses and individuals who are looking to support Pride in the Fort including sponsorship, vendors, and volunteering. Pride is committed to bringing events throughout the year to build a stronger LGBTQ community outside of the festival. Check out our events page for more info.
Colonial America on the Frontier - July 27-28, 10am-6pm, at The Old Fort. Enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of the American Revolution at Fort Wayne’s Historic Old Fort. The Continental Army and British forces will be on hand to provide live demonstrations throughout the day on period specific artillery and military maneuvers. Re-enactors will also bring to life the daily activities of this time period through demonstrations on period cooking, gardening, blacksmithing, and much more! The Fort will be open to the public: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 27, and 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 28. Tours of the Fort will be offered throughout the weekend.
Elkhart County 4-H Fair - July 19-27 at the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds. he fair hosts nationally known musical artists during their 5-night concert series. A sanctioned rodeo, PPL tractor pull, and demolition derby are also highlighted at the free grandstand during fair week. Bring your appetite and explore famous food row. With more than 70 food stands, the fair takes pride in offering mouth-watering, once-a-year, fair favorites. Over 3,000 4-H livestock and more than 4,000 4-H still exhibits are shown during the 9-day event. Daily entertainment can be been found on every corner of the grounds, with multiple shows and exhibits included with your gate admission. Thrill seekers of all ages will want to visit the mid-way, complete with roller coasters, games and kiddie rides for the young fairgoers.
Amishland and Lakes Bicycle Tour - July 27-28, 6am-1pm, at Lakeland High School. Amishland and Lakes, based at Lakeland High School in LaGrange, Indiana, visits a world where lifestyles have remained almost unchanged for over a hundred years. One of the friendliest rides around, you’ll enjoy seeing and meeting families, women’s groups, regional cycling clubs, and tandem pairs who tell us they love our routes because they are so “tandem friendly.” There are wide open spaces, clean country air, friendly people and lots of great food. There is plenty to explore, experience and eat. Amishland and Lakes is famous for great SAG food (watermelons, peaches, blueberries, bananas, fresh baked cookies and more), and there are also Amish bakeries, restaurants and homemade ice cream parlors along the route. The routes range from 22 to 100 miles, offering smooth, quiet roads, where buggies are numerous and cars are few (both days begin and end at the High School). We also offer directions for a do-it-yourself Friday option to ride the Pumpkinvine Nature Trail. Camping is available at the 4-H Fairgrounds across from our start location. For more details go to http://amishlandandlakes.com
11th Annual Dixie Day Festival and Arts & Craft Fair - July 27, 8am-5pm, at 102 S. Morton St. The Dixie Day festival honors the landmark sternwheel paddle boat. It also encourages everyone to visit North Webster. The Dixie Boat has been cruising Webster Lake every summer since 1929 and attracted more than 13,000 riders last season. Dixie Day Festival is a dream come true with a list of activities and events that continue to grow. Extra Dixie cruises will be added for Saturday afternoon of the festival as well as the regular evening cruises. What to expect: North Webster Fire Department Pancake/sausage breakfast - 7am until out, Arts and Craft fair- 10a- 4p, 5K Run like a Pirate/Walk like a Captain, Car, truck, and bike show 10a-3pm, Boat show- 8am-4pm, Delicious food trucks, Tractor Show 10a-3p, and Ride the Dixie Sternwheel on beautiful Webster Lake.
Lauren Talley - July 23, 7-9pm, at the Blue Gate Theatre. Showtime: 7:00pm | Doors Open: 6:30pm Prices: Tickets Only - $19.95 | Dinner and Theater - $37.95
The Taylors - July 25, 7-9pm, at the Blue Gate Theatre. Showtime: 7:00pm | Doors Open: 6:30pm Prices: Tickets Only - $19.95 | Dinner and Theater - $37.95
Legacy Five - July 26-27, 7-9pm, at the Blue Gate Theatre. Showtime: 7:00pm | Doors Open: 6:30pm Prices: Tickets Only - $39.95 | Dinner and Theater - $57.95
Central Indiana
SetonFest - July 25-27, 6-10pm, at St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church. SetonFest is a three-day festival that includes carnival rides, a different band each night, food, bingo, a casino, beer garden and more. Free parking and free admission.
2019 Topgolf Tour - July 22, 6-11pm, at Topgolf Fishers. Team up, play and earn your way to Las Vegas and $50,000. There are 19 Regional Tournaments at Topgolf locations across the US, UK, and Australia, between June 18 and August 14. Playing a variety of Topgolf signature games that test strategy and accuracy, two-person teams compete against one another for a spot at the Topgolf Tour Championships in Las Vegas, with full VIP treatment. Only one team from each Regional Tournament makes it through to compete for the glory and a life changing prize. WHAT'S INCLUDED Entry into Topgolf Tour Regional Tournament, Minimum 2.5 hours of game play, Hot buffet, Official Topgolf Tour Insulated Water Bottle, $5 donation to Bunkers in Baghdad from every US player registration.
25th Annual Frankfort Hot Dog Festival - July 26-27 at Prairie Creek Park. Indiana's largest two-day hot dog festival features vendors, family fun, hot dog eating contests, dachshund races and HOT DOGS!
Gas City Concerts in the Park Presents Keith Anderson - July 23, 7pm, at Gas City Park. This is a FREE concert brought to you by the Gas City Concerts in the Park committee.
Gas City Concerts in the Park Presents The Park Avenue Band - July 26, 7pm, at Gas City Park. This is a FREE concert brought to you by the Gas City Concerts in the Park committee
Indy Shorts International Film Festival - July 25-28, 10am-10pm, at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields. The Indy Shorts International Film Festival, presented by Heartland Film and the organizers of the Heartland International Film Festival (HIFF), is an Academy Award®-qualifying fest dedicated to the art of short film! Last summer, Indy Shorts expanded as its own separate event from HIFF, becoming the largest short film festival in the Midwest - showcasing storytelling from around the world. All winners (Grand Prize and Audience Choice Awards) will play encore screenings at HIFF in October 2019. General ticket info at https://heartlandfilm.org/indyshorts/.
Athenaeum Soireé: An Affair on the Ave - July 25, 630-900pm, at Athenaeum Foundation, 401 East Michigan St. The Athenaeum Soireé: An Affair on the Ave is an annual fundraiser featuring pairings of culinary creations and delicious handcrafted beverages from local establishments as well as live entertainment, silent auctions and more at this business casual, 21+ indoor event.
7th Annual Iron Eagle Paddle & Run - July 27, 8am-6pm, at Eagle Creek Park. Athletes of all ages can explore Eagle Creek Park, one of the nation’s largest city parks, via land and water alternating between trail runs and a canoe/kayak leg. Starting at the beach, the race consists of a 2.5-mile trail run, 1.5-mile paddle and 2.5-mile trail run back to the beach. Participants can enter as an individual or 2-person team. They have the option to bring personal kayaks or canoes with life jackets and paddles, or rent a boat in advance from Eagle Creek Outfitters. Spectators are more than welcome to come show support. Awards will be presented to the top solo female, the top solo male, the top team and the top relay team. An after party will be held post-race at the Earth Discovery Center. 100% of proceeds benefit the Eagle Creek Park Foundation. To Register: Visit EagleCreekPark.org
RhumFest 2019 - July 27, 2-10pm, at Kokomo Arts Pavilion in Foster Park. Enjoy live music by local students and instructors of Rhum Academy of Music in Kokomo. Free admission. Bring everyone for a family-friendly day of great music, art, food, and fun in Foster Park. With back-to-back performances in a variety of styles and genres all day you are sure to hear some music you love!
Tippecanoe County 4-H Fair - July 20-27 at the Tippecanoe County Fairgrounds. All phases of agriculture, 4-H exhibits, wide variety of youth activities, carnival rides, games and mouth watering fair food.
Tuesday on the Trail Nature Walk - July 23, 6-7pm, at the Haan Museum of Indiana Art. Get a closer look at nature as a guide leads you on an educational walk along our Nature Trail. The trail is about a mile long loop in the Museum’s three acre woods making it feel very much like a wilderness experience in the middle of town. Meet at the Nature Trail Entrance located at the south side of the Carriage house just off the parking lot. Fee: FREE
Bicentennial Park Summer Concert: Random Reaction - July 27, 7-9pm, at Bicentennial Park. Located at the corner of Indiana and Main Streets, the park is convenient to local restaurants to enjoy before the show. Popular local group Random Reaction will take the stage on July 27. Live music begins at 7 pm; bring your lawn chairs or blankets. Free.
47th Annual Vintage Motorbike Show - July 24-28 at the Jay County Fairgrounds. The LARGEST vintage motor bike show in the USA. Join us to reminisce the Simplex, Mustang, Whizzer, Cushman motorbikes and more! $5 admission fee per person/per day charged at the Fairground's front gate. Gates open at 6 AM daily.
Southern Indiana
Jackson County Fair - July 22-28 at the Jackson County Fairgrounds. The Jackson County Fair is the biggest and best! Still a free fair, find building after building of exhibits, visit barns, enjoy the midway and delicious food. Great grandstand events and racing!
Bluegrass on the Square - July 27, 4-8pm, at Historic Downtown Corydon. Since its inception in 2003, Bluegrass on the Square has featured some of the most well-known Bluegrass musicians in the region. Now in its 16th year. All concerts are free and open to the public. July 27 features Hog Operation and Ida Clare
Master Gardeners and 4-H Llamas & Alpacas Club - July 27, 800am-1230pm, at 400 Block Laffollette Station. Join us for Two Special Events;; Master Gardeners will be a the Market answering your Gardening questions and Floyd County 4H Club will be bringing the Alpacas & Llamas.
Purple Veins: a tribute to Prince - July 27, 630-900pm, at Lincoln Amphitheatre. Purple Veins aim to re-create the magical power and energy of a classic Prince show circa 1985: an all-out dance party with relentless funk, all the hits, tasty lesser-known classics, theatrical elements, and dance choreography woven into it. Their aim is to be all-inclusive, with an age range of 18 to 40 and multiple ethnicities within the band..to both reach his music to millennials who didn’t live through it and transport those that did back in time to their younger days. With a charismatic and soulful frontman, a huge ensemble (16 plus!) of the funkiest cats, sultriest singers, and hottest dancers Wisconsin has to offer, Purple Veins is THE tribute show of all Prince tributes.
Country Roads Shop Hop - July 25-28, 10am-5pm, at Country Roads of Dearborn and Ripley Counties. Six Antique, Vintage and/or Home Decor shops will be combining forces to give you an unforgettable shopping week, with the chance to win big in the process! You can start and end at whichever shop you would like. Get your brochure stamped at each location and you’ll be entered to win our Grand Prize Drawing, $150 in gift certificates! ($25 from each participating shop) * Must be 18 yrs or older to be entered and Limit 1 per family* No purchase is necessary to receive a stamp, but it will be difficult not to purchase anything when you see what these amazing shops have to offer! Are you ready for some Antique, Vintage or Home Decor shopping and hopping? Hop all over the country roads and visit each participating shop! The Greenbriar Shop - Guilford, IN, The White Swan - Moores Hill, IN, The Blue Willow House - Dillsboro, IN, The Rustic Nail - Dillsboro, IN, The Whistle Stop - Milan, IN, The Huntington Carriage House - Milan, IN.
Wild Women's Hike - July 27, 10am-12pm, at McCormick's Creek State Park, 250 McCormick's Creek Park Rd. All are welcome to join us for the monthly DNK hike at McCormick's Creek State Park! The hike is free, but there is an entrance fee to get into the park. We'll be meeting at the Wolf Cave Parking area for about a 2-mile hike. Click here for the park map: https://www.in.gov/dnparklake/files/mccormicks_creek_trail.pdf Can't wait to hit the trail with you!
ONGOING EVENTS
Northwest Indiana
Chesterton's European Market - Saturdays May through October at Third St and Broadway, Downtown Chesterton. An outdoor family/artisanal market held in historic downtown Chesterton from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Gary Southshore Railcats at U.S. Steel Yard - Various days at US Steel Yard. A day at U.S. Steel yard is non-stop fun, and that's even without the baseball! The RailCats promise a wide array of laugh-out-loud between inning entertainment, great giveaways , jaw-dropping fireworks and a family-first, kid-friendly atmosphere!
Miller Woods Hike Sundays - Every Sunday at Miller Woods. The hike starts at the National Lakeshore's Paul H. Douglas Center and travels through varied habitats including rare and beautiful black oak savanna and offers incredible views of Lake Michigan and Chicago. Wear sturdy shoes and bring water and insect repellent. This hike is offered every Sunday from 1:30 to 3:30pm.
61: An Exhibit Celebrating the 61st National Park - July 2 - Sep 21 at the Indiana Welcome Center, 7770 Corinne Dr. The 6,500-square-foot exhibit hall will be transformed to represent the 15,000 acres of diverse landscapes and highlight activities available to those that visit the park system. The exhibit will feature 12 trail stops. There will be interactive exhibits for children along the trail, selfie stations and a large “sandbox” for building sandcastles. Visitors will also have the opportunity to learn about the 1,100 native plant species, rare and migrating birds, as well as recreational opportunities like camping, hiking, kayaking and cross-country skiing. Interactive activities will also give children a chance to become a Junior Ranger!
Summer Market on the Lake - Thursdays through the end of August at Festival Park, 111 E Old Ridge Road. Come enjoy outdoor shopping featuring fresh produce, baked goods, ethnic and gourmet foods, beer garden, local live entertainment, jewelry, handmade crafts and so much more.
LaPorte Farmer's Market - Saturdays July through the end of October at Monroe St and Lincoln Way. The LaPorte Farmer's Market strives to build and strengthen the local food movement in LaPorte by showcasing our region's bounty and economic opportunities locally.
Summer Sundown Music Series - Sundays May through August. Bring the lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy Sunday evenings listening to a different musical artist each week. Each Sunday evening you will find yourself at a different park with new musical artist. Check online to see where and who will be appearing!
Michigan City Municipal Band Concerts - Thursdays in June, July, and August, at the Washington Park Guy Foreman Amphitheater. Experience free live musical performances under the stars near the shores of Lake Michigan in Washington Park. Seating available or bring your own chair. June-August, Thursdays 7:30pm.
Light Keeper Harriet Colfax Month - July 1-31, 1-4pm, at Old Lighthouse Museum, 100 Heisman Harbor Rd. Harriet Colfax came into the 1858 Light House in 1861 an served faithfully until her retirement in 1904. Learn more about his Great Lakes legend all month long. The Michigan City Historical Society commissioned a color portrait of Harriet by local artist Wendy Wilcox Kerman. Come and view the portrait and enjoy the historic museum and don't forget to browse the gift shop.
Michigan City's Farmers Markets - Saturdays July - October at 801 S Washington St. and 1500 Franklin St. Saturdays through October 26th, 2019. Michigan City's Farmers Market aims to provide our community with the freshest produce, providing a space filled with locally grown food and artisan goods
Market on the Square - Fridays June through August, 3-9pm, at Founders Square. There will be over 20 vendors selling unique crafts, fresh produce, honey, flowers, breads and jams. Plus local food vendors selling food. Bands from the region will begin at 6. Then to top off the evening we will have a family movie at dusk.
Keepers of the Fire: The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi - April 2019 to January 2020 at The History Museum. The rich history, culture, and art of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi is shared in this vibrant exhibit about the thriving community. Through interviews and oral histories, sculpture and beadwork, art and artifacts, the exhibit immerses visitors in the traditions and teachings of the Pokagon Band.
South Bend Cubs at Four Winds Field - Various days at Four Winds Field. The South Bend Cubs are the Class A minor league affiliate of the World Series Champion Chicago Cubs. Over the past 30 seasons, the team has won five Midwest League titles and has captured 12 division titles. In 2015 the team was named Ballpark Digest's Team of the Year and received the John H. Johnson President's Award, the highest award in minor league baseball.
The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Show - May 4th 2019 to May 2nd 2020, 6-9pm, at the DoubleTree by Hilton. America’s largest interactive murder mystery dinner show! The Dinner Detective provides a hilarious evening of murder mystery, a 4-course meal, and a prize package for the top sleuth. Just beware, the killer might be sitting right next to you!
Northeast Indiana
Fort Wayne TinCaps at Parkview Field - Various days at Parkview Field. The TinCaps are entering their 10th season at Parkview Field, which has been rated as Minor League Baseball's No. 1 Ballpark Experience four consecutive years.
Faces of Middlebury - May 17th to October 4th throughout Middlebury. Grab your cameras and the map to locate each “face of Middlebury” and insert your face for the perfect picture. Free maps are available at local businesses and organizations. Post your pics on Middlebury Then & Now’s Facebook page or on Instagram using #facesofmiddlebury. Can you find all of them, up to 30 "faces"?
Gangsters, Saloons and Buggies on Roofs Guided Tour - May 29th to September 25th at the Downtown Middlebury library. You wouldn't know Middlebury had a rough-and-tumble past, but behind today's modern facades lie tales of small-town mischief, hoods on the lam and possible mysterious passageways. Get the inside story and secrets from a local with this tour of downtown. Tours are offered at 10am every Wednesday and at 630pm the first Tuesday of each month. Walking tour is approximately 1 hour. Allow time after the tour to visit the unique shops and restaurants in the area. $5 Group tours are available by advanced reservation (call 574.825.5601)
Giant Toadstools and the World's Fair Guided Walking Tour - May 30th to September 26th at the Krider World's Fair Garden. Enjoy a guided tour through living history! The Krider family of Middlebury once captured the imagination of the world. This tour of the garden that bears their name opens a window to the family's nursery at the height of its creative powers. The beauty will take your breath away, just as it did at the Chicago World's Fair in 1933. Tours are offered at 10am every Thursday and at 630pm the first Tuesday of each month. Walking tour is approximately 1 hour. Allow time after the tour to visit the museum, unique shops and restaurants in the area. $5 Group tours are available by advanced reservation (call 574.825.5601)
A Simple Sanctuary, the new musical - March 28th to October 31st at the Blue Gate Theatre. She prayed the day would never come, but when her past comes calling, Melissa James has no choice but to flee. Pursued and living on the run, she finds desperate sanctuary and surprising friendship in Amish country. Part suspense, part romance, A Simple Sanctuary is a compelling story of love tested, the cost of freedom, and the solace found in true community.
Shipshewana Flea Market - Tuesdays and Wednesdays from May through September, 8am-4pm, at the Shipshewana Auction. Nearly 700 open-air booths on 40 acres await you at the Midwest’s Largest Flea Market. Food courts, restrooms, scooter rentals and rest areas are on site. Open rain or shine. Also open for Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, and new weekend markets on August 16-17 (MotheDaughter Days). Antique Auctions are every Wednesday inside the Antique & Miscellaneous building.
Shipshewana Breakfast Club - Fridays in July and August, 830-1100am, at the Blue Gate Theatre. Breakfast: 8:30am | Program: 10:00am Price: $26.00 - Includes Breakfast and Show These concerts will be held at the Blue Gate Theatre July 12 - Lynda Randle July 19 - Allison Speer July 26 - The Taylors Aug 2 - King's Brass Aug 9 - Doug Anderson Aug 16 - Old Time Preacher's Quartet Aug 23 - Soul'd Out Quartet Aug 30 - TBA
Central Indiana
Kroger Symphony on the Prairie - Saturdays and Sundays at Conner Prairie. The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra's summer series provides music from classical, pop, and rock genres from mid-June through Labor Day weekend. See performance schedule online indianapolissymphony.org
Celebrate the 10th Year of Tenderloin Tuesdays - Tuesdays in July throughout Hamilton County. Celebrating the 10th year, dine along the Tenderloin Trail™. Don’t miss Tenderloin Tuesdays™ in July along the tastiest trail. Each Tuesday restaurants offer special deals on the Hoosier delicacy. For a complete list of participating restaurants in Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield and Northern Hamilton County, visit TenderloinTrail.com.
Hot Wheels: Race to Win - May 18th to July 28th at The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis. Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines and hold on tight as we open our Hot Wheels: Race to Win exhibit celebrating speed, safety, design, and power. Get revved up for the special performances, activities, and the occasional pit stop.
Treasures of Ancient Greece exhibit - Jun 15 to Jan 5 at The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis. This once-in-a-lifetime immersive exhibition brings to Indianapolis more than 150 ancient objects and artifacts, many of which have never been seen outside of Greece. The ancient Greeks revered the human body, and many of the depictions are nude. Featured are bronze and marble statues, gold jewelry and funerary objects, exquisite pottery, artifacts of the world’s first democracy, and an extraordinary replica of the Antikythera Mechanism, known as the world’s first computer.
Mind Tripping Show - March 1st to December 28th, 8:30-10PM at the Hilton Indianapolis Hotel and Suites. Mind Tripping: a Comedy with a Psychological Twist is an interactive show by Christian & Katalina, the #1 Husband and Wife Comedy Mind Reading Act in the Nation. Be a part of a mind-bending, reality-twisting interactive theatrical show. Think Candid Camera meets the Twilight Zone. Be prepared to have your perceptions challenged and your expectations turned upside down
Naturally Inspired Art Exhibition - May 24th to August 21st at The Indianapolis Zoo. After the paintings have dried and been professionally framed by The Great Frame Up Downtown, they are displayed for the summer in the Schaefer Rotunda at White River Gardens. Plus, you also get to enjoy the works of some of our more artistically inclined animals. Who knows — you may see a penguin Picasso, a walrus Warhol, an elephant Escher and many others! The Naturally Inspired Art Show presented by The Great Frame Up Downtown is included with Zoo admission.
Nickelodeon’s PAW Patrol Adventure Play - February 23 to July 28th at The Children's Museum of Indianapolis. The hero pups of Adventure Bay are coming to The Children’s Museum, and they need your help. It’s time to run some rescue missions, as we work together to overcome challenges and help everyone in Adventure Bay. Enter the Lookout. Save the Day in Adventure Bay. Be a Helping Hero on Jake’s Mountain.
The National Bank of Indianapolis Summer Nights Film Series - Various days June-August, at The Amphitheater. You can watch movies under the stars every weekend at Newfields. Doors open at 7 pm, when you can enjoy a picnic dinner, music, and activities, followed by that night’s movie, which will begin when twilight turns to night (usually 9:30 pm). Over the summer, over 20 movies will be shown—everything from black-and-white classics to modern blockbusters. All you need is a picnic (with non-alcoholic beverages only), chairs (for the back row of each tier), and blankets (in case the chair row is full). You will also want sunscreen and bugspray. No alcohol, pets, candles taller than 12 inches, or knives permitted. And if you want to travel light with just a chair and blanket, concessions will be available to purchase. Check out discovernewfields.org/summer-nights-2019 to see available films and to purchase tickets once they are available.
Zoolapalooza Concert Series - Fridays in June and July, 530-830pm, at the Indianapolis Zoo. Under the Bicentennial Pavilion, this incredibly fun night out is a great way to kick off summer weekends on Friday evenings with terrific live music. Concerts are free for members and included with Zoo admission, so you can play all day and dance all night! Seating under the Bicentennial Pavilion includes open tables on a first-come, first-serve basis
The Generous Pour at The Capital Grille, July 8 - Sep 1, 5-9pm, at 40 W. Washington Street. The Capital Grille’s annual The Generous Pour wine event has returned for its eleventh year. This year’s theme is Legends of the Land, where guests can sip on any combination of seven select wines including the Maggy Hawk 2015 Pinot Noir, the 2015 Cenyth Red Blend, and the Arrowood 2013 Red Blend. Each is from California’s Jackson Family that tell a unique story of origin and sustainability. From July 8th through September 1, 2019, guests are offered a customized wine tasting paired with the restaurant’s classic menu items, including hand-carved steaks and fresh seafood and appetizers with a flavorful twist for $28 per person with dinner.
First Friday Kokomo - First Friday of every month, 530-9pm, at Downtown Kokomo. Activities include art, music, food, local vendors, shops, entertainment, kid's activities & much more! Visit their Facebook page for monthly themes and schedule of all activities!
Kokomo Jackrabbits at Kokomo Municipal Stadium - Various days at the Kokomo Municipal Stadium. Enjoy a day at the ballpark! The Kokomo Jackrabbits baseball team are members of the summer collegiate Prospect League. Games are held late May through early August and feature fun themes and giveaways. Lawn and stadium seating available, starting at $8.
Karl Martz and the Legacy of IU Ceramics - May 4th to July 27th, 1-4pm, at the Haan Museum of Indiana Art. Martz’s influence spread throughout Indiana and beyond through the ceramics program that he established at IU in 1945, and through his students. Many of Martz’s students went on to teach at universities, and others established successful careers as independent ceramic artists. The exhibition features works by Karl Martz, faculty that taught (or still teach) in the IU Ceramics Department, and students who went on to establish successful careers in ceramics.
Summer Story Hour - Mondays, 10-11am, at the Physical Building of the Joseph Moore Museum. Join us each Monday in June and July at 10am for a special hour of stories! Each week will feature a different book about nature or science with a corresponding craft or activity. All ages are welcome and stories are chosen particularly for children in preschool - first grade.
Indianapolis Colts 2019 Training Camp - July 25 - Aug 15 at the Grand Park Sports Campus. Join us at the Indianapolis Colts 2019 Training Camp! Every day you can enjoy watching practice, giveaways, food & drink specials, interactive games, and more. Download your free tickets at www.colts.com/camp.
Southern Indiana
Wildlife Cruises on Patoka Lake - Wednesdays May through October at the Patoka Lake Marina. Not just a boat ride: cruise the second largest lake in Indiana upon a climate controlled tour boat to search for osprey, eagles, blue herons, loons and other wildlife. Two hour cruises embark EVERY WEDNESDAY at 10am beginning in May and continuing through October. Voyagers are encouraged to capture on camera baby osprey in their nests, an eagle in flight, and busy beavers as the boat passes by.
Wine Cruises on Patoka Lake - Every other Friday starting June 7th, 730-930pm, at the Patoka Lake Marina. Sip wine paired with hors d'oeuvres/desserts while enjoying the sunset on Patoka Lake on our 60 person tour boat! Enjoy 5-7 tastings of wine from a featured Indiana winery, and choose 2 glasses of your favorite to enjoy after the tasting portion. Bottles of wine available for purchase as well as additional glasses. Call (812) 685-2203 to reserve your spot today! Only $50/person or $98/couple. Visit our website to view the winery lineup.
Shrek the Musical - July 3rd - Aug 18th, 6-10pm, at the Derby Dinner Playhouse. Somebody once told me everyone’s favorite ogre is back in the hilarious and twisted adventure based on the Oscar-winning smash hit film. Follow this unlikely green hero on a life-changing journey full of romance and dozens of zany misfit characters. The perfect show for any age! Ticket price includes dinner, show, tax & parking. AAA discount available.
Evansville Otters at Bosse Field - Various days at Bosse Field. Locally owned and a member of the Frontier League, the Otters are the darlings of summer. Great ball play combined with fun promotions throughout the game guarantee an evening of fun family entertainment. To top it off, the games are played at Bosse Field, a stadium built in 1915 and the site of the filming of "A League of Their Own" in 1992. Come watch our Boys of Summer from May through August!
Floyds Knobs Farmers Market - Saturdays May through October at 400 Block Laffollette Station. Floyds Knobs Farmers Market Opening May 11 - October 26 Every Saturday from 8:30 am to 1 pm. Were an Indiana Grown Market and host a variety of Great Events throughout Season.
The Art of the Monon - April 1st to August 31st, 10am-4pm at the French Lick West Baden Museum. The Monon was Indiana’s railroad and touched every town in Orange County. See the Monon paintings of renowned railroad artist Howard Fogg and other rare Monon items.
Dubois County Bombers at League Stadium - Various days at the League Stadium. League Stadium was home to the Rockford Peaches in the hit movie A League of Their Own. The vintage signage, scoreboard, and atmosphere remain. The Bombers play in vintage-inspired uniforms - pants are knickered, stirrups are worn. The crack of a wood bat against a baseball resounds through the stadium. You may hear Who’s on First over the audio. We even have our own Peaches at the games keeping everything in the stadium rolling, while our coaches and players keep it exciting on the field.
Rock on Rising Sun - April 10th to September 30th on Main Street. Search and re-hide painted rocks hidden within the City of Rising Sun city limits. Spearheaded by a local resident, thousands of rocks are painted throughout the season for kids of all ages to find and re-hide. Participants are encouraged to paint their own creations and hide within the city limits. Photos of found rocks are asked to be uploaded to the Rock on Rising Sun
submitted by WeimarRepublic to Indiana [link] [comments]

Part 2: A Timeline of Epstein, Trump, Sex Trafficking, and the Intelligence Community

I don't think John DeCamp gets everything right, especially his claims about satanic groups, but in 1988 we learn about the Franklin Coverup, which Wikipedia describes as:
"The Franklin child prostitution ring allegations began in June 1988 in Omaha, Nebraska and attracted significant public and political interest until late 1990, when separate state and federal grand juries concluded that the allegations were unfounded and the ring was a "carefully crafted hoax."[1][2].
From the NYT:
(12/18/88) A Lurid, Mysterious Scandal Begins Taking Shape in Omaha
In the Executive Board's public session Monday, Mr. Chambers said the activities of Lawrence E. King Jr., the credit union's manager for the last 18 years and the central figure in its collapse, were ''just the tip of an iceberg, and he's not in it by himself.'' But Mr. Chambers added nothing that would shed light on his cryptic assertion....Mr. King is a 44-year-old Omaha resident who wholly or partly owns several small businesses here and lives with his wife and school-age son in a large house in one of the city's better neighborhoods. He is a tall, expansive figure well known for his costly style of dressing, lavish celebrations and extensive travel, sometimes in chartered jets and often with an entourage of young men.In 1972 he headed a national political organization, Black Democrats for George McGovern. But he gained greater prominence after he had switched parties a while later, serving for a time as vice chairman of the National Black Republican Council, an official affiliate of the Republican Party, and becoming a familiar figure on the Republican social scene.Mr. King has maintained a $5,000-a-month residence off Embassy Row in Washington and has also entertained generously at Republican National Conventions. At the 1984 gathering, in Dallas, where he sang the national anthem on the convention floor, he rented the ranch where the television series ''Dallas'' is filmed and organized a party there for black Republicans....Mr. King's trouble with the authorities came to the surface early last month when officials of the Government's National Credit Union Administration, acting on information from the F.B.I. and the Internal Revenue Service, arrived at the offices of the Franklin Community Federal Credit Union and shut it down. Then, on Nov. 14, the agency, which oversees the nation's federally chartered credit unions and insures their deposits, filed the Government suit against Mr. King, whose salary as Franklin Community's manager had been less than $17,000 a year.
(1989) Washington Call Boy Scandal
Craig J. Spence (1941 – November 10, 1989) was a Republican) lobbyist who was found dead in a Ritz-Carlton hotel room in 1989.[1][2] ...Spence was implicated in a gay call-boy ring scandal, that arranged after-hours visits to the White House, the Washington Times and other papers reported in June 1989. Afterward, Spence committed suicide in a Boston hotel....Spence's name came to national prominence in the aftermath of a June 28, 1989 article in the Washington Timesidentifying Spence as a customer of a homosexual escort service being investigated by the Secret Service, the District of Columbia Police and the United States Attorney's Office for suspected credit card fraud. The newspaper said he spent as much as $20,000 a month on the service. He had also been linked to a White House guard who has said he accepted an expensive watch from Mr. Spence and allowed him and friends to take late-night White House tours.[4]Spence entered a downward spiral in the wake of the Washington Times exposé, increasingly involving himself with call boys and crack,[5] and culminating in his July 31, 1989 arrest at the Barbizon Hotel on East 63rd St in Manhattan for criminal possession of a firearm and criminal possession of cocaine.[6]Months after the scandal had died down, and a few weeks before Spence was found in a room of the Boston Ritz-Carlton Hotel, he was asked who had given him the "key" to the White House. Michael Hedges and Jerry Seper of The Washington Times reported that "Mr. Spence hinted the tours were arranged by 'top level' persons", including Donald Gregg, national security adviser to Vice President George H. W. Bush at the time the tours were given.[5]When pressed to identify who it was who got him inside the White House, Spence asked "Who was it who got [long-term CIA operative] Félix Rodríguez) in to see Bush?", agreeing that he was alluding to Mr. Gregg.[5]Gregg himself dismissed the allegation as "absolute bull", according to Hedges and Seper. "It disturbs me that he can reach a slimy hand out of the sewer to grab me by the ankle like this," he told the reporters. "The allegations are totally false."[5]
I'll let you decide how credible you find any of this so far. It should be noted that many of the people implicated in these affairs -- Wilson, Singlaub, Moon, Casey, Rodriguez, Bush, Stone, and Gregg -- were also involved to varying degrees in the Iran Contra Affair, which illegally raised money for anti-communist terrorists in Central America through the use of death squads, rape, and drug sales. One does not necessarily equal the other, but sexual blackmail and human trafficking don't seem like much of a stretch.
An article by The Guardian notes:
Czechoslovakia ramped up spying on Trump in late 1980s, seeking US intel:
In summer 1987, Donald and Ivana Trump visited Moscow and Leningrad, following a personal invitation from the Soviet ambassador in Washington, Yuri Dubinin. The trip was arranged by Intourist, a travel agency that was also an undercover KGB outfit. Soon after returning from Moscow, Trump announced he was thinking of running for president. That presidential bid failed to materialise.In October 1988, on the eve of the US election, Ivana Trump visited her parents in Zlín, known at the time as Gottwaldov. According to the files she “confidently” predicted Bush’s victory to her father, who in turn passed the tip to local StB officers.“The outcome of the election confirmed the veracity of this information,” StB field agent Lt Peter Surý wrote, in a document dated 23 January 1989 and marked “secret”.The prediction came “from the highest echelons of power in the US”. Ivana was “not only a well-heeled US citizen” but moved in “very top political circles”, Surý stated....It is unclear when the KGB began a file on the future president. In Prague about 60,000 StB documents were declassified in the mid-1990s, after the collapse of communism. The StB destroyed most records.However, secret memos written by the KGB chief, Vladimir Kryuchkov, in the mid-1980s reveal that he berated his officers for their failure to cultivate top-level Americans. Kryuchkov circulated a confidential personality questionnaire to KGB heads of station abroad, setting out the qualities wanted from a potential asset.According to instructions leaked to British intelligence by the KGB defector Oleg Gordievsky, they included corruption, vanity, narcissism, marital infidelity and poor analytical skills. The KGB should focus on personalities who were upwardly mobile in business and politics, especially Americans, the document said.
Another article in the Chicago Tribune notes:
Czechoslovakia secret police file: Trump sure of presidential win — in 1996:
A year before the 1989 collapse of communism in many parts of Europe, details about Ivana Trump's 1988 visit back to her homeland were recorded in a classified police report. The Oct. 22, 1988 report claimed that Trump refused to run for president in 1988 — despite alleged pressure to do so — because he felt, at 42, he was too young. But the secret report said he intended to run in the 1996 U.S. presidential race as an independent, when he would be 50."Even though it looks like a utopia, D. TRUMP is confident he will succeed," the police report said, based on information from an unspecified source who talked to Ivana Trump's father, Milos Zelnicek, about her visit.It was unclear where the alleged "pressure" was coming from. [Note: In "Get Me Roger Stone", Stone claims he was the one who convinced Trump to run.]...Trump's first wife was born Ivana Zelnickova in 1949 in the Czechoslovak city of Gottwaldov, the former city of Zlin that just had been renamed by the Communists, who took over the country in 1948. She married Trump, her second husband, in 1977. As she kept traveling home across the Iron Curtain on a regular basis, Ivana became a tempting target for the powerful, deeply feared Czechoslovak secret police agency known as the StB.
And by at least 1989, Trump himself was in the social circle of both Iran Contra figures and the father of Epstein's alleged "madame", Ghislaine Maxwell:
(This is from a previous post I made, seen here. Some of the links are subscription only, but are provided for accuracy)
NY Daily News - May 5, 1989:
“Everybody, but everybody at the party aboard British media mogul Robert Maxwell’s yacht Wednesday night had to doff their shoes before boarding the plush-carpeted “Lady Ghislaine.” Maxwell insisted, and his guests cooperated, including Donald Trump (minus Ivana), who has a much bigger yacht and was happy to compare notes with Maxwell. [Note: This is in reference to the Kingdom 5KR, originally owned by Adnan Khashoggi, international arms dealer and uncle of slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi.] There were John Tower [Republican Senator in charge of the Tower Commission, which investigated Iran Contra]; ex-Navy secretary John Lehman [Reagan appointee 1981-1987], now with Paine Webber; lawyer Tom Bolan [law partner of Roy Cohn]; literary agent Mort Janklow [clients include both Nancy and Ronald Reagan for their memoirs]; UN envoy Thomas Pickering [currently a board member at the world’s biggest pipe company, OAO TMK, in Moscow and Chairman of the Rostropovich-Vishnevskaya Foundation, “a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC that supports programs to improve the health of children worldwide”]; and Peter Kalikow, owner of the New York Post [awarded the Israel Peace Medal in 1982; created a super PAC for Herman Cain that was later revealed to be entirely financed by his donations]; Maxwell’s daughter, Ghislaine, and his niece, Helene Atkin of Macmillan, the publishing house Maxwell recently took over."[Note: This sentence wasn't in the Daily News article but shows up in a St Louis Dispatch piece a week later]: “Maxwell, who weighs about 300 pounds, went over the guest list personally.""No one could tell who didn’t make the final list, but we do know that Martha Smilgis of Time was disinvited by David Adler, public relations chief at Macmillan. She wrote the profile of Maxwell which he apparently did not like.”
Who was Ghislaine’s father?
Ian Robert Maxwell "MC (10 June 1923 – 5 November 1991), born Ján Ludvík Hyman Binyamin Hoch, was a British media proprietor and Member of Parliament (MP). Originally from Czechoslovakia, Maxwell rose from poverty to build an extensive publishing empire….Maxwell had a flamboyant lifestyle, living in Headington Hill Hall in Oxford, from which he often flew in his helicopter, and sailing in his luxury yacht, the Lady Ghislaine. He was notably litigious and often embroiled in controversy, including about his support for Israel at the time of the 1948 Palestine war. In 1989, he had to sell successful businesses, including Pergamon Press, to cover some of his debts. In 1991, his body was discovered floating in the Atlantic Ocean, having fallen overboard from his yacht. He was buried in Jerusalem. Maxwell's death triggered the collapse of his publishing empire as banks called in loans. His sons briefly attempted to keep the business together, but failed as the news emerged that the elder Maxwell had stolen hundreds of millions of pounds from his own companies' pension funds. The Maxwell companies applied for bankruptcy protection in 1992....Shortly before Maxwell's death, a former employee of Israel's Military Intelligence Directorate, Ari Ben-Menashe, approached a number of news organisations in Britain and the U.S. with the allegation that Maxwell and the Daily Mirror's foreign editor, Nicholas Davies, were both long-time agents for Mossad. Ben-Menashe also claimed that in 1986, Maxwell had told the Israeli Embassy in London that Mordechai Vanunu had given information about Israel's nuclear capability to The Sunday Times, then to the Daily Mirror. Vanunu was subsequently kidnapped by Mossad and smuggled to Israel, convicted of treason and imprisoned for eighteen years.Ben-Menashe's story was ignored at first, but eventually The New Yorker journalist Seymour Hersh repeated some of the allegations during a press conference in London held to publicise The Samson Option, Hersh's book about Israel's nuclear weapons. On 21 October 1991, two MPs, Labour's George Galloway and the Conservative's Rupert Allason (also known as espionage author Nigel West), agreed to raise the issue in the House of Commons under Parliamentary Privilege protection, which in turn allowed British newspapers to report events without fear of libel suits. Maxwell called the claims "ludicrous, a total invention" and sacked Davies.[44] A year later, in Galloway's libel settlement against Mirror Group Newspapers (in which he received "substantial" damages), Galloway's counsel announced that the MP accepted that the group's staff had not been involved in Vanunu's abduction. Galloway himself, however, referred to Maxwell as "one of the worst criminals of the century....The Maxwell companies filed for bankruptcy protection in 1992. Kevin Maxwell was declared bankrupt with debts of £400 million. In 1995, Kevin and Ian and two other former directors went on trial for conspiracy to defraud, but were unanimously acquitted by a twelve-man jury in 1996.”
Epstein's own weird history has been spoken of to some degree, and I'm not sure I have much to add at this point, but perhaps it's important in context.
Financier in sex abuse case went from math whiz to titan
He taught calculus and physics at the prestigious Dalton School, a prep school in Manhattan, from 1973 to 1975, despite not having a college degree. Attorney General William Barr's father, Donald Barr, was headmaster at the time...Epstein left Dalton in the mid-1970s for a job at Bear Stearns at the urging of a student's father who arranged a meeting with the chairman of the investment bank, according to published reports. He later began his own money-management business, J. Epstein & Co....Epstein has long obscured the source of his wealth. Even after his arrest, he refused to provide authorities with even basic information about his income and assets. His attorney said Epstein's lawyers intend to provide the information but want to make sure it is correct first.This much is clear: "He is a man of nearly infinite means," federal prosecutor Alex Rossmiller said in court....Epstein also forged a relationship with Leslie Wexner, the retail titan behind Victoria's Secret, The Limited and other store chains. He started managing Wexner's money in the late 1980s and helped straighten out the finances for a real estate development Wexner was backing in a wealthy Columbus, Ohio, suburb.It was through Wexner that [in1996] Epstein acquired his Manhattan mansion, a seven-story, 21,000-square-foot former prep school less than a block from Central Park. It has been valued at about $77 million.
Around the same time, Trump started dating Marla Maples, who was working at his Atlantic City Taj Mahal Casino:
(1988) The Untold Story of Trump Model Management (Part 1):
Donald Trump, for his part, was becoming increasingly restless, and reckless. Despite fathering 3 children and having a devoted wife, by all accounts he didn’t spend much time with any of them, preferring work and play to the routines of domestic life. In the 80’s he made at least two life changing decisions-to step out on his wife publicly, and to expand his negligible empire into Atlantic City casinos. He built Harrah’s at Trump Plaza in 1984, and a partially completed building that became Trump Castle in 1985-a property that would be managed by his first wife, Ivana. He also scooped up the Taj Mahal in 1988, which at a cost of $1.1 billion made it the most expensive casino ever built at the time.
Some weirdness starts to pop up here, at least allegedly. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer:
(10/27/83) GROUND BROKEN FOR RESORTS' 2D N.J. CASINO-HOTEL
Resorts International, which opened the city's first gambling hall 5 1/2 years ago, broke ground yesterday for a second casino-hotel that will cost $250 million to build and will contain 1,000 hotel rooms and the world's second-largest casino.
According to Wikipedia:
Resorts International was a hotel and casino company. From its origins as a paint company, it moved into the resort business in the 1960s with the development of Paradise Island in the Bahamas, and then expanded to Atlantic City, New Jersey with the opening of Resorts Casino Hotel in 1978.
So how did a paint company morph into a multimillion dollar casino company? We're going to have to go to conspiracy theorists again. Make of it what you will:
Goodfellas: The Hidden History of Resorts International:
Resorts International was largely a family affair that grew out of a company called the Mary Carter Paint Company."Mary Carter (she never existed) was pretty much a family affair controlled by Jim Crosby, two of his brothers, and his in-laws. Based in Tampa, Florida, the firm included in its directorate James Crosby, John Crosby (a plastic surgeon in Mobile, Alabama), William Crosby (a Tampa realtor), and the Murphy brothers, Henry and Tom, who'd married the Crosby daughters. Henry owned a funeral home in Trenton, New Jersey, while Tom was board chairman of Capital Cities Communications, a successful broadcasting business founded by explorer Lowell Thomas. The explorer too was an early shareholder in Mary Carter Paint, as was Republican Thomas Dewey." (Spooks, Jim Hougan, pg. 381)Acclaimed researchers Sally Denton and Roger Morris note: "... the Mary Carter Paint Company, which was widely considered to be a CIA front that laundered payments to the Cuban exile army in the early sixties..." (The Money and the Power, pg. 284).This is certainly quite plausible considering Mary Carter was then based out of Tampa, a hub for joint CIA-Syndicate efforts to assassinate Castro. As was noted before here, Tampa don Santo Trafficante, Jr. was one of the gangsters initially tapped by the CIA's notorious Office of Security to arrange for Castro's untimely demise. Trafficante, a close associate of Meyer Lansky (whom we shall return to again), had been deeply involved in Cuba's gambling operations prior to the revolution and would later become even more deeply immersed in the world heroin trade. As was noted before here, he was very close to the emerging Cuban Mafia, which provided ample recruits to the CIA during the early 1960s despite much suspicion that Trafficante was a double agent for Castro.Certainly the Mary Carter Paint Company would have been well positioned to assist Trafficante in these endeavors in Tampa. And such a connection would also explain why the corporation, in the mid-1960s (as CIA Cuban operations were winding down), abruptly sold off its paint business and boldly delved into gambling. By the end of the decade it was managing one of the most profitable casinos in the world on the Bahama's Paradise Island.What it amounts to is that by the late period James Crosby emerged as not only the CEO of Mary CarteResorts International, but as an extremely well connected figure within the GOP and beyond."... Crosby was himself uniquely situated in Republican circles: a sometime guest at the White House, he'd donated $100,000 to Nixon's 1968 campaign. He was also a friend of, and frequent host two, Bebe Rebozo (with whom he banked). Moreover, Crosby's private intelligence agency, Intertel, was even then working with White House aides and ITT executives to discredit Jack Anderson's revelations anent ITT and Chile. At the same time, Intertel was the de factocustodian of the demented billionaire Howard Hughes (his own $100,000 donation would later result in two volumes of Senate testimony in the Watergate affair). Indeed, the ties between Paradise Island and Richard Nixon's administration were of the sort that bind: Allan Butler, owner of the failing bank that was his namesake, claims the Nixon was a silent partner of Crosby's in his Bahamian ventures, sharing a healthy chunk of Paradise Island bridge revenues with yet another secret partner, Bebe Rebozo. And by by no means finally, James O. Golden, Resorts' vice-president and one of Intertel's founding spooks, had formerly served as Nixon's Secret Service shield, later taking charge of security for the Nixon forces at the GOP's 1968 convention in Miami Beach. That Paradise Island is a special place, and had a special place in the heart (or what passed for a heart) of the Nixon regime, is abundantly clear... (Spooks, Jim Hougan, pg. 180) ...And that brings us to possibly the most curious aspects of Resorts, namely its ownership of its own vast private intelligence network.It was known as Intertel, short for International Intelligence, Inc. Intertel was incorporated in 1970 as an almost wholly-owned subsidiary of Resorts International and hit the ground running. During its heyday, Intertel had an impressive roster and an international reach. It would turn up in host of intrigues throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Curiously, it had its origins with Robert Kennedy's "Get Hoffa" squad."... Intertel, known especially and remarkably for its composition of former organized crime strike force attorneys from Robert Kennedy's Justice Department... The IRS considered Intertel... 'an organized crime enterprise of some type aimed at the Bahamas,' as one account summed up the agency's view. Roberts Peloquin and William Hundley, Kennedy's top crime fighters, had joined the firm and recruited operatives from the CIA, FBI, IRS, Secret Service, and other intelligence agencies. Staffed exclusively by what one author called 'Get Hoffa agents,' it was likened into a corporate CIA.' (The Money and the Power, Sally Denton & Roger Morris, pg. 284)...Intertel's other ventures include spying of muckraker Jack Anderson) for ITT, investigating the Chicago Tylenol murders and the Bhopal disaster. Even more ominous, however, were its dealings with a shady Belgium-based private detective agency known as Agence de Recherche et d'Information (ARI). As was noted before here, ARI was linked to members of the neo-fascist terror organization known as the Westland New Post, a few of whom had also been implicated in drug trafficking and pedophile rings. Intertel reportedly hired ARI to do some work for them during the 1980s....What is of great interest to us here is Trump's third Atlantic City casino: the Taj Mahal. While now widely associated with Trump, thanks in no small part to it leading to his first bankruptcy, it was not in fact Trump who started the casino. That dubious distinction lies with Resorts International.The company had begun construction on the Taj Mahal in 1983, but had run into persistent difficulties in finishing construction in the following years. Then, in April 1986, James Crosby died suddenly. This left Resorts in turmoil (allegedly) and Trump stepped in. Trump bought a controlling stake in the company in 1987 and was promptly named its chairman of the board.Let that sink in for a moment: Donald J. Trump, the current President of the United States, was briefly the chairman of a corporation long suspected of being a CIA front, that had decades-spanning involvement with the Syndicate, numerous "rogue" financiers, various drug and arms traffickers and which owned a vast private intelligence network...."
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer:
(07/22/87) TRUMP COMPLETES THE DEAL FOR RESORTS INTERNATIONAL
Developer Donald Trump took control of Resorts International Inc. yesterday in a $79 million deal that gives him his third Atlantic City casino, including what will be the largest gaming hall in the city.Trump sealed the deal in New York with those connected to the estate of the late founder of Resorts International, James M. Crosby.Trump paid a cash price of $135 a share for 585,068 shares of Class B stock, which has 100 times the voting power of Class A stock.He is expected to make a formal tender offer for the remaining 167,230 shares of Class B stock within the next several weeks at the same $135-a-share price. Owning all the Class B stock would give him 93 percent of the company's voting power.At a board meeting immediately after the transaction with the Crosby estate, Trump was elected chairman of the board of Resorts International, replacing Henry B. Murphy, Crosby's brother-in-law, who resigned.
And his relationship with Ivana was falling apart:
(1989) Ex-Wife: Donald Trump Made Me Feel ‘Violated’ During Sex
After a painful scalp reduction surgery to remove a bald spot, Donald Trump confronted his then-wife, who had previously used the same plastic surgeon.“Your fucking doctor has ruined me!” Trump cried.What followed was a “violent assault,” according to Lost Tycoon. Donald held back Ivana’s arms and began to pull out fistfuls of hair from her scalp, as if to mirror the pain he felt from his own operation. He tore off her clothes and unzipped his pants.“Then he jams his penis inside her for the first time in more than sixteen months. Ivana is terrified… It is a violent assault,” Hurt writes. “According to versions she repeats to some of her closest confidantes, ‘he raped me.’”Following the incident, Ivana ran upstairs, hid behind a locked door, and remained there “crying for the rest of night.” When she returned to the master bedroom in the morning, he was there.“As she looks in horror at the ripped-out hair scattered all over the bed, he glares at her and asks with menacing casualness: ‘Does it hurt?’” Hurt writes.
In 1992, Trump would divorce Ivana. It's this same year that we find him arranging a party of 30 for himself, Jeffrey Epstein, and 28 young aspiring calendar girls:
(1992) Trump Was Alone at a 1992 Party with 28 Girls and Accused Sex Trafficker Jeffrey Epstein
Part of a “calendar girl” competition organized at Trump’s request, the party was put together by a businessman named George Houraney, who spoke with the New York Times for a story published Tuesday.Houraney was also one of many to accuse Trump of sexual harassment, this time toward his former girlfriend and business partner, Jill Harth, who described an incident in 1997 as an attempted rape by Trump.“I arranged to have some contestants fly in,” Houraney told the Times. “At the very first party, I said, ‘Who’s coming tonight? I have 28 girls coming.’ It was him and Epstein.”...Before the “calendar girl” event, Houraney warned Trump about Epstein once again.“Look, Donald, I know Jeff really well, I can’t have him going after younger girls,” Houraney recalled telling Trump in the Times interview. “He said: ‘Look I’m putting my name on this. I wouldn’t put my name on it and have a scandal.’”
[EDIT: MSNBC reports on 07/17/2019 on newly discovered footage of Trump and Epstein discussing women at a party in November of 1992.]
The Boston Globe reported:
(1992) The pageant of Donald Trump’s dreams
It was a snowy night in Manhattan, December 1992, and the festive group was embarking on a circuit of exclusive clubs after a sumptuous dinner at the Plaza Hotel’s Oak Room.As the limo wove through the city, Trump discussed his views on dating, according to one of the women riding along. The billionaire casino mogul declared that “all women are bimbos” and said most were “gold diggers” who would be smart to go after men with money. Like him.Rhonda Noggle, the model who relayed the story to the Globe in an interview, said that, at that point, she had had enough. Speaking sharply to Trump, she said, she asked him to stop the limo. The car grew silent.
(1989-1995) The Untold Story of Trump Model Management (Part 1):
1989-1995 just so happens to be the same time period in which Donald Trumps world and empire was falling apart at the seams. In the beginning of the decade he was facing the end of his first marriage and a looming court battle. Despite his purportedly active dating life, by many accounts Trump was being rejected by many, if not most, of the women he pursued-including Carla Bruni and Jill Hearth. Marla Maples, after years of being the secret mistress and repeated rounds of being dumped and publicly humiliated by Trump, was starting to lose her patience. And the big gamble he took in Atlantic City was, by all accounts, failing miserably-a direct result of his jaw droppingly awful business practices and general incompetence. In 1991, his Taj Mahal Casino filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. In 1992, he again filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy again, this time on his Trump Plaza Hotel (also in Atlantic City), at the time owing $550 million dollars. Recall that he would report an almost 1 billion dollar loss on his 1995 tax returns, according to the copies obtained by the New York Times. Indeed, the early 90’s were not a very good era for Donald Trump. In light of this fact, it’s worth noting that the sexual assault allegations against him are all clustered within this very time frame. [Note: This article was written in 2016, prior to more allegations]...By the time “New York Magazine” did a front page profile of him in 1988, Casablancas reputation for bedding young models was established and begrudgingly accepted (a price to pay in exchange for his “genius”) within the New York social scene, but the expose came as a shock to many outside the bubble. John Casablancas would soon find out that he was not as untouchable as he thought he was. In the article-which ran under the title “Girl Crazy”-Casablancas was portrayed as a champagne guzzling pervert, singularly dedicated to the “new look” department of Elite where he spent his days ogling the scantily clad, sometimes naked bodies of teenage girls. In light of Donald Trump’s more alarming comments and decisions around his daughter Ivanka, this quote stands out:"Casablancas talked about his seventeen year old daughter, Cecile. He said Cecile had been solicited by a photographer last summer on a beach in Ibiza. The photographer asked her to pose in a bikini, and Casablancas raced over to try to get a $2,000 fee for the shot. “She’s got a great little body” he told his models."Another quote that brings a chuckle and a nod of recognition in this story is Casablancas’s bizarre pride over never having changed a diaper. Donald Trump would make similar boasts in a Howard Stern interview a few years later. Compelling proof this is not, but I do believe it’s a hint at the kind of Don Juan persona that Don, far from a Juan, actually a dejected, balding husband with a crumbling empire....But the scandal did not end there, nor did it begin. Less than a month earlier 60 minutes aired a prime-time special on the abuses of underage girls in the modeling industry. Investigative reporter Craig Pyes portrayed the modeling industry as infested with agents who were notorious hustlers and playboys. His report revealed that both Claude Haddad- the head of European scouting for Ford- and Ford’s Paris-based agent Jean-Luc Brunel had been accused of horrific sexual misconduct by many models. [Note: Brunel's name appears multiple times on Epstein's flight manifests.] The special aired the interviews of dozens of women who accused both Brunel and Haddad of a litany of crimes, ranging from racist invective towards black models to violent rape. And in fact the hidden camera footage captured in filming the special caught it all- from Xavier lamenting about n**er models, to Haddad chuckling about drugging and raping 13 year old girls. According to Model At a retreat soon after the one-two punch delivered by the coverage, Haddad, Jean Luc Brunel and Casablancas were once again overheard (albeit not taped this time around) laughing about their crimes. Alternatively they were angry when confronted by interim scouting manager Trudi Tapscott - ”I’m a man and I have needs, I will not apologize for that!” Casablancas is said to have declared....Over time Donald Trump would emerge from the ruins of his empire with a new approach to business, and a new source of income-in 1996 he bought the rights to the Miss Universe franchise, and became the central figure in the running of these pageants. And in 1999 he started a modeling agency - T models, later changed to Trump Model Management. The correlation of interests is quite clear-for a man awkward around women but dependent on his public image saying otherwise, a stable of women under his employ was a way to boost his image-and even better, he was able to lock all of these women into non disclosure agreements, ensuring that his behavior with them had little chance of becoming public knowledge. It also appeared to have served as a useful tool regarding his business transactions-which, in the aftermath of his bankruptcy, were increasingly dependent on some less than savory characters. How he did this, and the breadth of this activity, will be explored in the next installment. But for the time being, there is one final aspect of this story that is breathtaking, and speaks more to the character of Donald Trump than anything else.
More in Part 3.
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THE HOTEL at Black Oak Casino - Grand Opening - YouTube

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