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Mark "Gator" Rogowski, before he ended up in prison. - His story, Stoked: The Rise and Fall of Gator, is - at the Cinematheque Sunday.
  • Mark "Gator" Rogowski, before he ended up in prison. His story, Stoked: The Rise and Fall of Gator, is at the Cinematheque Sunday.
Thursday, November 27

The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo welcomes everybody in free today and has lined up a day full of public feedings and special activities for the animals. That means staffers will toss dead fish for seals and sea lions to fetch, and leave honey trails on trees for bears to follow. Zoo employees will also answer questions about the featured animals (elephants and sharks get special treatment too) throughout the day. The zoo (3900 Wildlife Way) is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today. Call 216-661-6500 for more information.

Friday, November 28

The 30th annual Larchmere Holiday Stroll takes place this weekend, kicking off Shopping Season 2003 with gift ideas from more than 45 area stores -- everything from books, furniture, and artwork to antiques, jewelry, and vintage clothing. All this, and free horse-and-buggy rides! It happens from noon to 5 p.m. today through Sunday on Larchmere Boulevard (one block north of Shaker Square); call 216-229-8919.

Sixteen-year-old Bay Village resident Kate Voegele sports a résumé that musicians twice her age would kill for: She wrote all the songs on her debut EP, "The Other Side," warmed up audiences for Chris Isaak, Aimee Mann, and John Mayer, and is getting major airplay on local college-radio stations. She taps into the post-Lilith Fair female singer-songwriter set, looking like Michelle Branch and sounding like Jewel -- all the while declaring her independence from bad boyfriends and the like. Voegele opens for Cincinnati rockers Oval Opus at the Hard Rock Café (230 West Huron Road) at 9:30 tonight. Tickets are $7. Call 216-830-7625 for more information.

Saturday, November 29

Since their reformation a decade ago, the Buzzcocks have made a handful of albums that desperately attempted to fan the punk flame they helped ignite in the late '70s. Their new self-titled CD comes closest to the sound and fury unleashed on such classics as Another Music in a Different Kitchen, Singles Going Steady, and A Different Kind of Tension. Founders Pete Shelley and Steve Diggle now write and sing about more grown-up things, but onstage, they still haul out such teen-angst anthems as "Orgasm Addict" and "Oh Shit!" The Buzzcocks are at Peabody's (2083 East 21st Street) at 7 tonight. Tickets are $12 and $15. Call 216-241-5555 for more information.

Sunday, November 30

Mark "Gator" Rogowski was the Tony Hawk of his time. During the late '80s, he was a skateboarding superstar with his own boards, videos, and clothing line. By 1991, he was in prison for killing a woman. Stoked: The Rise and Fall of Gator chronicles Rogowski's tragic tale. Old-school skateboarders weigh in on the guy, who they describe as being both charismatic and "a prick." Most of the pros -- including Hawk -- now distance themselves from Rogowski. Stoked is a comprehensive document of his fame, fortune, and destruction. it's at the Cleveland Cinematheque (11141 East Boulevard) at 9:20 tonight and 7 p.m. tomorrow. Admission is $8, $5 for members. Call 216-421-7450 for more info.

Monday, December 1

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is turning into one of those other types of museums for winter -- you know, the kind with art and stuff. Rock My Soul: The Black Legacy of Rock and Roll features more than 20 paintings by Detroit-based artists that depict African-American contributions to popular music. "We're trying to portray, artistically, this legacy from African drum beats to hip-hop," says Rock Hall President and CEO Terry Stewart. "There are strong lines there." West African music, blues, jazz, gospel, R&B, funk, and hip-hop all are represented. "The art is individually powerful, but the sum of the parts is much greater," Stewart says. Rock My Soul is at the Rock Hall (751 Erieside Avenue) through April 30. It's open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily (till 9 p.m. Wednesdays). Admission is $11 to $18; call 216-515-1930 for more information.

Tuesday, December 2

South Korean photographer Nikki S. Lee explored the worlds of a dozen oft-maligned stereotypical American cultures for the works that make up Assumed Identities: Nikki S. Lee Photographs, opening today at the art museum. From drag queens and yuppies to exotic dancers and trailer-park dwellers, the intimate, revealing portraits are the product of six years during which Lee assimilated herself within each subculture. Assumed Identities is at the Cleveland Museum of Art (11150 East Boulevard) through January 21. It's open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily (closed Mondays). Admission is free. Call 216-421-7340 for more information.

Wednesday, December 3

James McGrath Morris discovered something about Cleveland while researching his book, The Rose Man of Sing Sing: A True Tale of Life, Murder, and Redemption in the Age of Yellow Journalism. He found out that pioneering newspaper editor Charles E. Chapin, convicted for murdering his wife in the 1920s, had a romantic association with a Cleveland-based Federal Reserve Bank employee . . . while serving his life-sentence. "She edited financial documents every day, but was carrying on a 10-year relationship with one of America's most notorious convicts," Morris says. The book details Chapin's path to success (he was an archetypal hard-bitten editor of Joseph Pulitzer's New York Evening World) and ruin (he planned to kill himself after shooting his wife in her sleep, but had second thoughts). "Everyone in the 1920s knew who he was," Morris says. "And by telling his story, I'm able to tell a broader story about the development of America's mass media. Consuming news as entertainment [started here]." Morris is at Joseph-Beth Booksellers (13217 Shaker Square) at 7 p.m. Admission is free. Call 216-751-3300 for more info.

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