Charlottesville Breaking News
As far as music festivals go, certain regions of the country have it covered: Chicago has Lollapalooza, Tennessee has Bonnaroo, and Austin has South-by-Southwest. What more do we need?
According to local businessman and former City Council candidate Paul Beyer, there's plenty of room for more music meccas in the US– and Charlottesville is just the place for a large-scale, multifaceted festival to call home. Enter the Tom Tom Founders Festival, a month-long soiree that seems to emulate the feel of SXSW by combining live music, art shows, local food showcases, and business/innovation workshops to bring community possibility to the forefront of everyone's mind.
"Tom Tom's themes are about music, art, and innovation– those are all conversations that take place in Charlottesville to begin with," he says. "There's a sense of artistic possibility within the community as well as a political and business landscape."
Tom Tom looks to educate and inform festival-goers while striking just the right balance of celebration and revelry– which is where the music comes in. Music is obviously a draw for Cvillians, who boast a handful of large, big name arenas and concert halls as well as a bevy of intimate, unique hole-in-the-wall venues. With a music scene that has ebbed and flowed throughout the years– from rockers and jam bands in the '70s to songwriters, bluegrass/rockabilly, and indie-pop-rock groups dominating the circuit today– findi...
[Re: April 12 cover story: "Belmont
vortex: Vision vs. reality in Belmont Bridge debate"], three
big questions to mix it up at your next backyard BBQ:
1. The historical debate: "Is the Belmont Bridge replacement design a step forward or a step back?" Historians have articulated that the current bridge was, like the Vinegar Hill razing, a product of biased urban planning and Eisenhower-era highway hysteria. It cut off Downtown from the surrounding neighborhoods– geographically, socially, and economically. Do we want to repeat that mistake for simplicity's sake? Or do we care enough to rethink that critical junction from the ground up– and maybe even below. How would we do it now if we could do it over? (And, we can.)
2. The metaphysical riddle: "Are we designing for a journey or a destination?" True, we could spend $14.5 million on a utilitarian slab of road. Or, we could create an enduring piece of Charlottesville culture– an arts district, a central park, a permanent farmer's market (add your dream here). Infrastructure is about opportunity. The Rotunda is more than a classroom. The Downtown Mall is more than a mall. That's how we do it in Charlottesville, right? Rethinking the Belmont Vortex should take us somewhere far greater than the mere distance from Levy to Market Street.
3. The political hot potato: "Who is the p...
"She is impressive," says Charlottesville-based evolutionary psychiatrist Andy Thomson, speaking of Sarah Blaffer Hrdy, a University of California-Davis-based researcher who is one of the world’s foremost experts on mothering and the mother-child relationship. Her works includeMother Nature and Mothers and Others, the latter of which is gaining her a visit and an award at UVA on Thursday in McKim Hall, a building along Hospital Drive.
April 26th, Leonard Sandridge Auditorium, 4pm, free
Art and theater
Downtowners know all about First Fridays, but what about Final Fridays, the collection of arts events UVA organizes in the area now fondly called the John & Betsy Casteen Arts Grounds, which serves as the site of the academic year's fi...