THE 144th ANNUAL WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB DOG SHOW EXPANDS TO THREE DAYS IN 2020

“king” Best In Show 2019

“king” Best In Show 2019

The Westminster Kennel Club will expand its iconic dog show to include an additional third day of breed judging at Pier 94 in New York City. The Westminster Week celebration of dogs will kick off on Saturday, Feb. 8, with the Masters Agility Championship followed by the 144th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on Feb. 9-11, 2020.

Westminster will continue its annual benched dog show tradition, which offers the public an opportunity to meet and greet nearly 3,000 dogs of 205 breeds and varieties. In 2020, this will include an extra dog show day on Sunday, Feb. 9, at Pier 94. Spectators will now have a weekend opportunity to interact with hundreds of dogs and watch top show dogs vie for a chance to compete in the Groups, which will be held during the evening at Madison Square Garden on Monday, Feb. 10 and Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.

For 2020, Westminster welcomes a newly eligible breed, the Azawakh, to the competition. Originally from the West African nations of Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger, this guardian and hunter has a long history as a companion to nomads of the region. The Westminster Best of Breed winning Azawakh will make history as the first in its breed to compete in the Hound Group at Madison Square Garden. To learn more about this African sighthound, please visit the Media Center or the Azawakh breed page on Westminsterkennelclub.org.

"We are thrilled to offer dog lovers another day to meet top canine competitors from around the world," Westminster Director of Communications Gail Miller Bisher said. “Westminster looks forward to continuing its tradition of celebrating purpose-bred dogs, and their owners, breeders, and exhibitors, by sharing their heartwarming stories and highlighting their achievements in dog sports.”

There are a variety of ticket options on sale now at westminsterkennelclub.org. Also, find a quick reference guide to Westminster event tickets here.

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Party for Piedmont Park September 5, 2019

Every morning around 7:30am, eight men wearing “Piedmont Park Conservancy” imprinted on their chest set out on golf carts, trucks and mowers to tackle the 200 plus acres of beautiful Piedmont Park. Standing from any Piedmont Park gate looking in, anywhere your eyes can see is likely to be impacted by the Piedmont Park Conservancy. Whether you love to visit the Dog Parks, play in the playgrounds, shop at the Green Market, attend camp, splash in the Legacy Fountain, or jog around the running track, you can see the efforts of this hardworking team.

The Conservancy is now celebrating their 30th anniversary at the fall fundraiser, Party for Piedmont Park! While Party for Piedmont Park is one of the most important events benefitting the Piedmont Park Conservancy, it is also a joyful celebration of the life of Piedmont Park. Great food, drinks, music, and auction items all contribute to a wonderful evening of support.

Pop the champagne and turn on the music, because the Conservancy and over 500 friends are going to have a night to remember. Guests will arrive at Greystone, a gorgeous venue hall with original granite walls overlooking the pool and Lake Clara Meer. Then, attendees will be treated to an open bar, restaurant tastings from Atlanta’s premier spots, and an opportunity to snap a picture at the photo booth. Dance through the decades with DJ BIGG H and Ricardo Spicer of Amp’d Entertainment. Finally, check out a live drawing by The Sketch Effect and an experience-based auction spreading across the venue.

Many Atlantans don’t realize that Piedmont Park is much too large for just city support. The Piedmont Park Conservancy must raise over $3.5 million each year and rely on over 10,000 hours from volunteers to preserve and enhance beautiful Piedmont Park. Support your park by attending the Party for Piedmont Park on September 5, 2019! CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS!

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WILDWOOD REVIVAL UNVEILS FULL PERFORMER LINEUP

Wildwood-Revival

Wildwood Revival, a thoughtfully curated and intimate gathering and festival, is set to return this September 27th through 29th on historic Cloverleaf Farm just outside of Athens, Georgia.  Celebrating its sixth anniversary, the event embodies the magic of a Deep South setting, out into the wildwood while celebrating Athens’ storied music scene.  From Country, Blues and early Jazz to Gospel, Soul, Metal and Rock n’ Roll, Hip Hop and beyond, this isn’t your every day festival.  Exploring music, food and friendship, this coveted festival is a little bit country, a little bit rock n’ roll, and everything in between.  

With tickets on sale now, the full lineup of performers for 2019 has been released. Festival goers can enjoy engaging sets from an array of artists including: Lucinda WilliamsShovels & RopeMandolin OrangeSon VoltLanghorne Slim and The Lost at Last BandRayland BaxterRebirth Brass BandThe Texas GentlemenCharley CrockettLilly HiattT. Hardy MorrisSuper DopplerCedric BurnsideIlliterate LightRevel in Dimes, and Georgia Mountain String Band. Performers take the stage in the Pecan Grove as well as inside the farm’s open-air barn. Beyond the stage lights, there are late-night picking sessions around the campfire where the best stories are often sung. 

The festival also features a dynamic artisan market with vintage clothing, antiques, printmakers, woodworkers, 1800’s-era tintype photography, leather makers, handmade crafts and more.  Celebrating what’s old is new again, Wildwood Revival  embraces its history as a cultural revival; making it a true antithesis to what people have come to think of festivals. Around the grounds, festival goers can experience great food, cold craft beers from Creature Comforts Brewing Co., and meals made with local produce.  In addition, this is a plastic-free experience with no single use cups or bottled waters, with YETI offering festival goers stylish drink ware options. All the water is filtered, cold and free. Camping is encouraged for the full experience, but if guests prefer a king bed and AC to a shady patch of grass, there are plenty of lodging options in nearby Athens.

All tickets to Wildwood Revival include three full days of music.  VIP tickets include access to a 7,000- square foot Antebellum Mansion that includes gourmet catered meals, complimentary alcohol, private restrooms and an outdoor courtyard. The farm opens Friday at 12 p.m. and music starts at 4 p.m. Tickets start at $92. To purchase tickets, visit https://wildwoodrevival.com/tickets.  

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Dad's Garage Big Stupid Parking Lot Carnival - April 6th

BSPLC Square

Move over BaconFest, Dad’s Garage Theatre Company is shaking things up this year and rolling out a brand-new concept for its annual fundraiser: Dad’s Garage Big Stupid Parking Lot Carnival.  One part festival and one part theatrical weirdness, the inaugural event will feature plenty of beer, delicious food and rides.  Attendees will also have the chance to interact one-on-one with Dad’s Garage improvisers in games and carnival booths like the Redneck Wine Tasting, Wheelchair Obstacle Course, Bad Caricatures, and Improvised Erotic Fanfiction.  Set for Saturday, April 6, 2019 from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., Dad’s Garage Big Stupid Parking Lot Carnival is for ages 21+ and will take place in and around the theatre’s home in the Old Fourth Ward.  Tickets start at $10 and all proceeds benefit Dad’s Garage Theatre Company.  For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.dadsgaragecarnival.com

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WHERE TO SPEND NEW YEAR’S EVE IN ATLANTA

NYE 2019

RING IN THE NEW YEAR WITH AN INDULGENT FOUR-COURSE DINNER AT ATLAS

Decked out in holiday décor, Atlas will offer three seatings this New Year’s Eve at 5 p.m., 7:30  p.m. and 9:30 p.m. for a special, four-course prix fixe dinner created by Executive Chef Chris Grossman for $150 per person.  Diners will be treated to an evening of live music by La Calle Ocho Funk Band and a celebratory midnight toast to ring in 2019.  The Tavern at Atlas will also be serving its acclaimed small plates menu. With a focus on curating fresh ingredients from local farms, Atlas is an award-winning restaurant located in The St. Regis Atlanta (88 West Paces Ferry Rd NW) and celebrates the very best in seasonal American cuisine combined with European influences. For more information or to make a reservation, visit atlasrestaurant.com or call 404.600.6471.

CELEBRATE 2019 OUTSIDE THE CITY AT BISTRO OFF BROAD

Want to avoid the hustle and bustle of Atlanta this New Year’s Eve? Bistro Off Broad, a chef-inspired bistro located in historic downtown Winder, GA, is hosting a special New Year’s Eve celebration on Monday, December 31st.  Known for its farm-to-table French and Contemporary American Cuisine, award-winning Executive Chef Alex Friedman has whipped up a Southern-style, four-course prix fixe dinner menu for $65 per person or $85 per person with wine pairings.  In addition to the regular menu, beginning at 6 p.m., Chef Alex will be serving:  Hoppin’ John — Black Eyed Peas, Grilled Baby Collards, Corn Pudding, Smoked Ham, Pot Likker Demi; Diver Scallop — Blue Crab Finger, Warm Blue Crab Salad, Charred Citrus Butter, Kaffir Lime; 72 Hour Short Rib — Goat Cheese Ravioli, Sweet Potato Puree, Chanterelle Mushrooms, Baby Boy Choy; and finally, Passionfruit Mouse — Vanilla Genoise, Blood Peach, and White Chocolate Truffles.  And, if that wasn’t enough, guests will be treated to live music from the Daniel Lee Band and a champagne toast at midnight.   For more information, visit www.bistrooffbroad.com or call 678.963.5517.

CELEBRATE THE NEW YEAR AT TWO URBAN LICKS 

Celebrating the New Year in style, hungry revelers are invited to visit TWO urban licks for New Year’s Eve dinner created by Executive Chef Michael Bertozzi on Monday, December 31st between 4:30 p.m. and 1 a.m.  Conveniently located on the Atlanta BeltLine, the evening will feature live music from Johnny Cash Now and a balloon drop at midnight.  TWO is also hosting a New Year’s Day dinner on Tuesday, January 1st from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.  Guests can take advantage of TWO’s acclaimed wine program, craft beers and specialty cocktails while enjoying an array of classics such as: TWO’s popular Salmon Chips — Smoked Salmon, Chipotle Cream Cheese, Capers, and Red Onion; Pork Belly — Shrimp Fried Rice, Farm Egg, House Kimchi, and Unagi; Lamb Porterhouse — Fottouch, Fregula, Hummus Cherry Bomb Hot Sauce.  To make a reservation, visit twourbanlicks.com or call 404.522.4622. TWO urban licks is located at 820 Ralph McGill Blvd. Atlanta, GA 30306. 

SAIL INTO THE NEW YEAR WITH YACHT ROCK REVUE AT PARK TAVERN IN PIEDMONT PARK

Let the countdown begin as Park Tavern gets ready to sail into the New Year on Monday, December 31st with an all-inclusive celebration featuring live music from Yacht Rock Revue in the Piedmont Room.  Beginning at 9 p.m., partygoers are invited to enjoy an open bar of premium liquor, beer, wine and champagne from Coors Light, Blue Moon, Miller Lite, Crispin Original, Finlandia, Sland Irish Whiskey, Jack Daniels, Jack Daniels Winter Jack and El Jimador tequila, along with a range of tasty offerings including hors d'oeuvres, tacos, sliders, fresh sushi flown in from Hawaii, and s’mores. At midnight, guests will be treated to a champagne toast and can dive into a breakfast buffet that includes Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, breakfast burritos, and much more. General Admission tickets are available for $125 for ages 21 and up and the Ultimate VIP Experience tickets are available for $200 and include champagne, oysters, sushi and wagyu beef from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. and the Yachty New Year’s Eve Party from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.parktavern.com or call 404.249.0001.

RING IN 2019 AT STK ATLANTA’S MOËT & CHANDON NEW YEAR’S CELEBRATION

NYE 2019

This New Year’s Eve, join Midtown’s sexiest steakhouse for an unforgettable New Year’s celebration on Monday, December 31st. Known for its high-energy atmosphere and exceptional, signature and seasonal offerings, STK will take luxe to the next level during its New Year’s Eve Moët & Chandon Celebration.  Not only are partygoers invited to enjoy a selection of seasonal specials created by Executive Chef Thomas Mikesell from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., but they can also take advantage of a three-hour premium open bar beginning at 9 p.m.  Revelers are invited to dance the night away to a live DJ performance and will be treated to complimentary New Year’s Eve party favors, a champagne toast at midnight, and much more.

General Admission tickets, including a 3-hour premium open bar experience, is available for $95 per person. For a more exclusive experience, partygoers can take advantage of the Moët & Chandon Champagne Ice Impérial option that includes a 750ML Bottle and a dinner reservation for two guests for $150 per person; the Moët & Chandon Champagne Magnum Bottle experience that includes a dinner reservation for four guests for $225 per person; or the Moët & Chandon Champagne Public School Limited Edition Bottle experience that includes a dinner reservation for four guests for $325 per person.  Tax and gratuity are not included in any package.  The event is for ages 21 and up and tickets are available by visiting https://www.bigtickets.com/events/stkatlanta/stk-atlanta-new-years-eve-ice-ball/?referral=bt-buy-tix

For more information, visit STK Atlanta online at www.stkhouse.com or call 404.793.0144. STK Atlanta is located at 1075 Peachtree Street in Midtown Atlanta on the corner of Peachtree and 12th Streets in the 12th & Midtown development. 

CHEERS TO THE NEW YEAR AT CITY WINERY

Atlanta Wine Festivals is returning for the second year in a row to the popular urban winery to host an unforgettable bash on Monday, December 31st from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. The all-inclusive, high-energy party will feature a premium buffet, spirits, beer, and fantastic wine options for revelers.  Guests can also dance the night away as they prepare to ring in 2019 with live music from Coast Guard and a popular local DJ.  General Admission tickets are $99 advance and $109 after December 22nd and $119 the day of the event.  VIP tickets are also available and include an 8 p.m. entry and access to exclusive VIP bars for $139 advance and $149 after December 22nd. VIP tickets are not available the day of the event. To purchase tickets, visit https://www.bigtickets.com/events/atlantabeerfestivals/atlanta-wine-festivals-new-years-eve/?referral=cw.

For more information, visit  citywinery.com/atlanta or call 404.946.3791. City Winery is located at Ponce City Market, 650 North Ave NE, Suite #20,  Atlanta, GA 30308.

IT’S A NEW YEAR’S EVE ON MIRACLE ON HIGHLAND AT PARISH

It’s beginning to look a lot like cocktails! Conveniently located along the BeltLine in Inman Park, join PARISH for a New Year’s Eve Miracle on Highland.  Beginning at 9 p.m. on Monday, December 31st, partygoers can cozy up in the winter wonderland and take advantage of PARISH’s buffet, an open bar that includes Miracle’s cocktail line up, beer, wine and well spirits upstairs, while bourbon and bubbles will be flowing in the market downstairs.  The evening’s soundtrack is created by Rare Form Crew.  Tickets are available for $120 per person at MiraclebarAtlanta.com. Can’t make it for New Year’s Eve?  Miracle on Highland is open on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m., and on Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Miracle on Highland at PARISH: The Brasserie and Neighborhood Café is located at 240 North Highland Avenue Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30307. For reservations and more information, visit parishatl.com or call 404.681.4434.

KEEP IT CASUAL AT DANTANNA’S THIS NEW YEAR’S EVE

With locations in Buckhead and Downtown in CNN Center, Dantanna’s invites revelers to keep it casual this New Year’s Eve.  Offering their full dinner menu featuring a diverse selection of fresh seafood, steak, burgers, salads, sandwiches and more, guests can sit back and relax while watching the ball drop on one of the many flat screen TVs located throughout the restaurant and bar.  An Atlanta institution for drinking and dining over the past 15 years, both locations will be open until midnight on New Year’s Eve, Monday, December 31, 2018. Dantanna’s Buckhead is located at the Shops Around Lenox, 3400 Around Lenox Rd NE #304, Atlanta, GA 30326. Dantanna’s Downtown is located at 1 CNN Center #269, Atlanta, GA 30303. For more information or to make a reservation visit www.dantannas.com or call 404.760.8873 for Dantanna’s Buckhead or 404.522.8873 for Dantanna’s Downtown.

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The Atlanta Ballet presents A WHOLE NEW ‘NUTCRACKER’

nutcracker

Atlanta Ballet’s first fresh holiday show in 2 decades

was 2 years in the making. Creators hint

that it will be brimming with surprises.


Atlanta Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” runs Dec. 8-24 at the Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.892.3303. 

::

CURTAIN UP on the glow and oh-so-pretty snow. It’s finally time to crack open a whole new Nutcracker because, as Atlanta Ballet Artistic Director Gennadi Nedvigin says, every generation deserves its own.

Choreographer Yuri Possokhov in rehearsal for the new “Nutcracker.” Atlanta Ballet Artistic Director Gennadi Nedvigin describes his friend as “a child in big-person pants” and calls his work “amazing.” Photo: Kim Kenney

Choreographer Yuri Possokhov in rehearsal for the new “Nutcracker.” Atlanta Ballet Artistic Director Gennadi Nedvigin describes his friend as “a child in big-person pants” and calls his work “amazing.” Photo: Kim Kenney

Nedvigin, a Bolshoi-trained artist, became the fourth artistic director in the company’s 89-year history two seasons ago. He last danced with San Francisco Ballet, and moved to Atlanta knowing he’d help oversee an all-new Nutcracker ballet.

Young people who grew up attending its predecessor, a storybook production staged for 23 seasons, are continuing the tradition. The old version was set against rich, jewel-toned backdrops that evoked 19th-century Russia. It blended clever comedic moments and ethereal classical ballet sequences with thrilling pas de deux.

Nedvigin’s new $3.7 million staging, choreographed by friend and Russian-born dancer Yuri Possokhov, returns to the original source material: German author E.T.A. Hoffmann’s 1816 fantasy story, “Nutcracker and Mouse King.” It places the opening Christmas Eve party scene in a small German village.


A magical uncle

With dream-versus-reality notions, along with toy soldiers and snowflakes and such, The Nutcracker opens its imagination wide to artistic invention. But its central story line often remains: a magical uncle figure brings handmade toys to children at the party. Among them is a nutcracker, which is soon broken. A young girl named Marie checks on it in the middle of the night and discovers it has come to life. The nutcracker battles a mouse king, and then turns into a prince who carries Marie off to a fantasy kingdom inhabited by dolls.

A costume fitting with designer Sandra Woodall. Photo: Kim Kenney

A costume fitting with designer Sandra Woodall. Photo: Kim Kenney

Hoffmann’s tale contained bleak, even scary elements. As a leader in the German Romantic movement, he was accustomed to writing fantasy and Gothic horror, with tales full of inanimate objects coming to life. In 1844, French writer Alexandre Dumas toned down much of the darkness in Hoffmann’s story. An all-new Nutcracker, which premiered in 1892 in St. Petersburg, Russia, paired the lighter Dumas telling with the familiar Tchaikovsky score.

The ballet was not an immediate hit, finding success gradually and chiefly after 1954, when George Balanchine created a version for New York City Ballet. Atlanta audiences have seen that version, too, and until now the one choreographed by Possokhov predecessor John McFall. Possokhov’s ballet is unlike either of those.

“Yuri is truly a child in big-person pants,” Nedvigin says. “He has such a great sense of creativeness inside him. The dancers can prove my words. He truly becomes a child and runs and plays when he is creating. It’s amazing to watch him. We’ll be having dinner, and you will see him just sort of float away. You discover he is making steps in the air.”

The ‘firepower’

Atlanta Ballet hints that its new  Nut “will rival a Broadway show in terms of production firepower.” A versatile team was assembled to help make that happen:

A costume rendering for Christmas Eve party guests by designer Sandra Woodall.

A costume rendering for Christmas Eve party guests by designer Sandra Woodall.

SCENIC DESIGNER TOM PYE sometimes designs costumes as well. He received a Tony nomination for the scenic design of Broadway’s 2004 Fiddler on the Roof revival.

COSTUME DESIGNER SANDRA WOODALL has done costumes and scenery for prominent ballet companies around the world. She designed costumes for Atlanta Ballet’s Helen Pickett-choreographed Camino Real (2017). A “costume can be absolutely stunning,” Pickett says, “but it cannot take away from what the body is doing … how the body describes the story … and Sandra understands that.”

LIGHTING DESIGNER DAVID FINN did lights and scenery for Camino Real. Next for him are world premieres of The Little Prince for the National Ballet of Canada and Frankenstein for London’s Royal Ballet.

PROJECTION DESIGNER FINN ROSS did scenery for Broadway’s Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Frozen and Mean Girls. He won London’s Olivier Award (2012) and Broadway’s Tony Award (2014) for the scenic design of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. He and his team spent nine months making the short, three-dimensional film shown during the overture.

And that’s not all. Robert Allsopp, known in  theater circles for his sculptural costumes, was hired to create mice costumes and some headpieces. His work is among more than 250 costumes this Nut uses, many hand-dyed and handcrafted in the United States and three other countries.

Friends & colleagues

Possokhov and Nedvigin have known each other for 18 years. Both were San Francisco Ballet principals near the ends of their performing careers, which also is when Possokhov’s choreographic reputation began growing.

“Oh, so many wonderful surprises,” promises artistic director Gennadi Nedvigin. “So much more is possible.” Photo: Hyosub Shin

“Oh, so many wonderful surprises,” promises artistic director Gennadi Nedvigin. “So much more is possible.” Photo: Hyosub Shin

The Nutcracker is rooted in Tchaikovsky’s music,” Possokhov says, and gives choreographers “much room for imagination.” Its magic is “its ability to bring people together — children, parents, grandparents, friends, people from all different backgrounds and various faiths.”

Atlanta Ballet calls the new production “a Nutcracker for our time,” without getting too specific. “You will lose your mind to it,” Nedvigin says, “and will forget what is outside the theater walls. You will be transported to a completely different world.”

Nedvigin and Possokhov want audiences to have a hard time discerning what is and isn’t real “but in a good way.” Almost whispering, Nedvigin says, “Oh, so many wonderful surprises. So much more is possible. One time will not be enough to see it or love it.”

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THE WHISKEY GENTRY ANNOUNCES 10TH ANNUAL MERRY Y’ALLTIDE CELEBRATION

The Whiskey Gentry - Photo: Jon Whittaker

The Whiskey Gentry - Photo: Jon Whittaker

An Atlanta institution, The Whiskey Gentry has announced it will be returning to the Variety Playhouse on December 8, 2018 for the 10th Annual Merry Y’alltide Celebration.  The announcement comes with the news that this will officially be the final performance by The Whiskey Gentry. Recent months have seen the band take fewer engagements, as lead singer, Lauren Morrow has emerged with a new sound and self-titled solo EP.  Rolling Stone profiled Morrow in its latest issue as one of their “10 New Country Artists You Need To Know”  creating further buzz to already exciting news.

“When Jason and I started The Whiskey Gentry, I don't think we ever imagined how incredible this journey would be. We've toured the world, played music with some amazing people, and most importantly, created a family with a group of guys that we love like brothers,” says The Whiskey Gentry lead singer, Lauren Morrow.  “ Over the years, some of us have gotten married, had kids, moved to different cities, and it makes it harder to be a collective unit like it was.  Jason and I have chosen to keep moving with our careers under my name, but no matter what, we will always have these songs, this family of musicians, and all of the incredible memories we've created together over the last decade.”

The final performance of The Whiskey Gentry will be accompanied by several special guests who will help get the crowd warmed up for this spirited evening. Full details on the special guests along with comparative poster art will be reveled in the coming weeks. 

Advance tickets for the 10th Annual Merry Y’alltide Celebration are on sale now, starting at $20. Based on availability, tickets may be available at the Variety Playhouse box office the day of the show.  Tickets are available online at www.ticketfly.com.  This is an all ages show and doors open at 7:00 p.m.  The 10th Annual Merry Y’alltide Celebration is presented by Zero Mile.

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