Next time you're plastered, try this: Put your index fingers together a couple of inches away from your face. Stare across them at a distant point. See the cocktail wienie in the middle? "You'll get what they call a 'sausage finger,'" says Jennifer Radwan, public programming director at Great Lakes Science Center.
That's one of the experiments featured in Adventures in 3-D, a traveling exhibit of holograms, floating rings, and other optical illusions opening Saturday. There's also an "illusion room," reminiscent of a carnival funhouse filled with mirrors. "With two people standing on opposite sides of the room, their proportions are thrown wildly off-kilter," explains Val Davillier, the center's exhibits director. "You're completely baffled by what you're seeing."
For the grand finale, a cow's eye is dissected to show how the brain works with the iris, retina, and lens to create sight. "Some people are a little queasy and don't want to participate, but most people think it's the coolest thing," says Radwan. "But I don't recommend anyone doing this at home." The exhibit is at Great Lakes Science Center (601 Erieside Avenue) Saturday through September 6. It's open 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Admission is $12.95, $5.95 for kids; call 216-694-2000. -- Cris Glaser
DJ's life lights up Strip.
George Hickenlooper knows the biz. His documentaries about Peter Bogdanovich and Francis Ford Coppola have won him kudos. And he's just made the most sensitive rock movie of all time, Mayor of the Sunset Strip, about L.A. DJ Rodney Bingenheimer (who helped launch the careers of David Bowie, Nirvana, and others). "I went over to his apartment, [which was] floor-to-ceiling with photographs of himself with celebrities," Hickenlooper says. "Rodney would become luminous when he would talk about these photos." The challenge, the director says, was balancing his subject's contribution to music "versus a visceral story about this guy who was abandoned by his parents. He's been trying to make up for that in life." Mayor is at the Cleveland Cinematheque (11141 East Boulevard) at 9:15 Friday and 7:55 p.m. Saturday. Admission is $8; call 216-241-7450. See Film for review. -- Gregory Weinkauf
Thomas the Tank Engine rolls into the Cuyahoga Valley.
Yes, Day Out With Thomas features cheeky Thomas himself, his stout blue frame and omnipresent grin parting the verdant woods of the Cuyahoga Valley. He is large, and he is bodacious; preschool eyes bulge at the sight of him. But there are other, equally awesome attractions: an entire carnival tent packed with all manner of Thomas merchandise, along with other tents teeming with activities, from craft-making to storytelling. Thomas pulls into the station at Boston Mill Ski Resort (7100 Riverview Road in Peninsula) from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday (and May 28 to 31). Admission is free to roam the tents and shop; rides on Thomas cost $14 (free to riders under 1); call 866-468-7630. -- Erich Burnett
In Girls Who Bite Back: Witches, Mutants, Slayers, and Freaks, editor Emily Pohl-Weary set out to dispel, as well as feed, the myths surrounding superpowered women in movies and on TV. "I wanted to redefine the superheroine," she says. "They're a lot of fun, but I still have issues with them." Pohl-Weary brings a troupe of writers and performers (including a ventriloquist) to Mac's Backs (1820 Coventry Road in Cleveland Heights) at 7 p.m. Monday. Admission is free; call 216-321-2665. -- Michael Gallucci