This Week's Day-By-Day Picks

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Grab a partner and dance, dance, dance to the music - at Wade Oval Wednesdays.
Grab a partner and dance, dance, dance to the music at Wade Oval Wednesdays.
Thursday, July 21

Jennifer Jeanne Patterson discovered something after her nuptials: Marriage ain't easy. But unlike most of us (who bitch, cry, and resign ourselves to a life of misery), Patterson worked out her problems by writing a book: 52 Fights: A Newlywed's Confession. "I was getting frustrated and was thinking that maybe I married the wrong person," she says. "We were encountering all these issues." The book divides a year of arguments into chapters ("Dealing With Temptation," "My Debt Is Your Debt"). Now there's a new wrinkle: Patterson and husband Matt recently became parents. "There's so much more work to do," says Patterson, who's at Mac's Backs, 1820 Coventry Road in Cleveland Heights, at 7 tonight. Admission is free; call 216-321-2665.

Friday, July 22

In the mockumentary Mail Order Wife, a documentarian breaks Rule No. 1 by taking an active part in this movie about a Burmese mail-order bride. When her new husband casts her in amateur porn videos made in their basement, the non-English-speaking woman leaves the guy and shacks up with the filmmaker (co-writer and co-director Andrew Gurland). But the supposedly innocent victim turns out to be a shrewd con artist in this funny, biting comedy, which screens at the Cleveland Cinematheque (11141 East Boulevard) at 7 tonight and 8:50 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $8. For more information, call 216-421-7450.

We love playing sports at night. Whether it's tennis, baseball, or hoops, the absence of sunlight, the addition of bugs, and the quiet all around make for a grand experience. One of our favorites is Metroparks' Moonlight Golf. Unlike other sports, which are played either in confined spaces (tennis) or with balls bigger than a human head (basketball), nocturnal golf adds a whole new obstacle to the game: You gotta find a tiny ball in a wide-open field. In the dark. All of which makes this outing one of the most satisfying and challenging games out there -- even with a special Nitelite ball that glows in the dark. Tee time is 9 p.m. at Mastick Woods Golf Course in Rocky River Reservation, 19900 Puritas Road. Fee is $20. For more information, call 216-267-5626.

Saturday, July 23

At this weekend's Arts Expo 2005, more than 165 arts and crafts exhibitors, food vendors, and live performances (from the likes of Ohio Ballet) celebrate summer with enough activities and displays to keep everyone happy. It's at Hardesty Park (at the corner of West Market Street and Wellhaven Drive in Akron) from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow. Admission is free. For more info, call 330-375-2835.

San Diego's Waking Ashland never met a piano flourish it didn't want to ride out. It initially comes on like one of those mid-'80s hair-rockin' bands that leaned a little too heavy on the keyboards (hello, Night Ranger!). Listen closely, though, and you'll hear some contemporary noise too. On its debut album, Composure, the foursome sounds like a cross between Ben Folds and any number of emo bands. It all makes for tuneful, keyboard-driven rock that's earnest and shameless as hell. Waking Ashland comes to the Grog Shop (2785 Euclid Heights Boulevard in Cleveland Heights) with Action Action and Spitalfield at 6 tonight. Tickets are $8; call 216-241-5555.

Sunday, July 24

Ever wish you could return to ye olden days, when folks only had to worry about the Black Death, pillaging knights, and maggot-ridden potatoes? The Great Lakes Medieval Faire turn its fairground into a land of strolling minstrels, kings, princesses, and lute-makers for the next couple of weeks. Super-old-school food, drink, and music will be on hand. And today only, pirates invade. Ahoy, matey! Get medieval from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday through August 7 at the fairgrounds (seven miles south of I-90 at the Geneva exit on State Route 534). Admission is $16.95, $5.95 for kids; call 888-633-4382.

Monday, July 25

Mushroomhead launches its summer tour tonight with Waylon, its new frontman, who wowed the crowd last month at the CMJ Rock Hall Music Fest. The local metal band's first DVD, Volume 1 (a compilation of videos, live clips, and backstage peeks), comes out in a couple of weeks. The road show introduces songs from a new CD due later this year. Busy guys! Show time is 7 p.m. at Peabody's, 2083 East 21st Street. Tickets are $18, available by calling 216-241-5555.

Tuesday, July 26

Legacy Village's free Legacy Live music series keeps summer nights filled with pop, rock, jazz, folk, and classical-music performances. Something's happening almost every night of the week (jazz on Thursdays, pop and rock on weekends, etc.). Tuesday's classical-music night, and since we're not the type to spend $75 on an orchestra ticket, this sounds like a pretty cool deal. The Metropolitan Brass performs at 6:30 tonight at Legacy Village (on Cedar Road in Lyndhurst); call 216-382-3871.

Wednesday, July 27

Wade Oval Wednesdays at University Circle offer a sweet summer-concert series loaded with food, drinks, and museum specials. In addition to the Western Reserve Historical Society's free admission (and jalopy rides), the Museum of Natural History and Botanical Garden both cut their admission fees to $5 after 5 p.m. The latter also offers a Chef Series, featuring some of the area's finest eats (Mitchell's Ice Cream is in the house tonight). And free outdoor performances keep the music playing during lunch and dinner times. Today's lineup includes guitarist Doug Wood (from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.) and folkie Anne E. DeChant (from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.). The series runs through August 31. Call 216-707-5033 for more information.

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