Journey Into Night
Friends and followers of this column, I have an announcement to make.
After almost exactly four years writing this column, and five years and seven months as a reporter, I am officially moving on from The Post-Journal.
It’s a big, somewhat scary move for me, but I feel the time has come for me to set forth upon a new journey and see what I can see. My last day will be Friday, May 25, and my final column as a Post-Journal employee will run the day prior.
This is not a decision I arrive at lightly, but it is one that I made long ago — that when presented with the right opportunity, I would humbly accept and graciously pass the baton onto another eager journalist. Now that opportunity has come, and, with a tinge of sadness, I am going to pursue it.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel like the decision I’m making is the wrong one. But I have sat at this same desk for the past 67 months, hammering out regular columns (this is my 212th consecutive column, by the way) along with a plethora of other stories on a weekly basis.
During that time I became familiar and comfortable with my job, but never truly considered that this would be all for me. I’ve never been one to harbor extreme or lofty ambitions for myself when it came to a career outside of music, but I do know there is more out there; and I’d like to experience some of that.
Thankfully, for those of you have an interest in reading this column week in and week out, I have been in discussions with the powers that be regarding the continuation of this column in some fashion. The details have yet to be solidified, but both parties have expressed an interest in having me still contribute in some way. So, I wouldn’t completely write me off (see what I did there?) from our local daily print publication just yet.
I’ll save most of the sappy, sentimental rhetoric for next week’s “final” column, but I felt it wouldn’t be right for myself or my readers to sit on this information. We all must allow ourselves the time to process and, at least in my case, grieve to some degree. Plus, maybe this will set the stage for an easier transition even as I begin the slow process of cleaning up and out my desk — which, by the way, I’ve accumulated a lot of stuff during my time here.
The really tough thing is that, in bringing to close this chapter of my professional life, I also conclude some other personal chapters as well.
I was at a completely different phase of life when I officially began this job on Oct. 8, 2012. In these past years I feel I’ve lived several different lives and assumed even more roles and identities for those I’ve met, and even lost, along the way. Though hardly any of these lives, roles and identities were really associated in any way with my job title, they will invariably remain linked in the recesses of my brain simply because they occurred in the same time frame.
OK, this went on longer than I intended, and I hope I saved up enough to use in next week’s column. I know I have a real good parting quote to end that off with, so that’s something. But with all this information in mind, I think I’ll take my leave until next time.
And now, here’s some of what you can expect to find in the area this week.
RTPI To Offer Guided Gallery Tour Today: The Roger Tory Peterson Institute will offer a Guided Gallery Tour trom from 7-9 p.m. in conjunction with its newest exhibit, “Roger Tory Peterson: The Life, The Work, The Legacy.” Peterson’s contributions, beginning with his pioneering field guides, have educated generations about nature worldwide. The knowledge and passion that he shared helped spark the global modern-day environmental movement, and his legacy continues to inspire and inform to this day. This exhibition, featuring never before seen original artwork alongside unique artifacts and memorabilia, tells Peterson’s story. The exhibit will be on display through Aug. 5. The guided tour will be administered by Jane Johnson, RTPI’s director of exhibits and special collections.
The cost for this program is a $10 donation, which supports RTPI’s Art, Education, and Conservation initiatives. For more information, call 665-2473 or visit rtpi.org.
‘Third Thursday’ To Feature Spooky Wescott, In Crowd Tonight: The seventh annual “Third Thursday” free downtown concert series will kick off its season with performances by local bands Spooky Wescott and The In Crowd at Winter Garden Plaza tonight beginning at 6:30 p.m. “Third Thursday” concerts are free, family friendly and open to attendees of all ages. Music will run until approximately 9:30 p.m.
The Winter Garden Plaza is located adjacent to The Wine Cellar at 313 N. Main St. For more information, find the event on Facebook.
JCA’s 2017-18 Finale Concert Is Friday: The Jamestown Concert Association is set to conclude its 2017-18 season with the performance of a duo hailing from abroad. Syrian-born clarinetist Kinan Azmeh and his accompanist Dijuk Wijeratne, a Sri Lankan-born Canadian on piano, will give an 8 p.m. concert at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church on Friday to close out the JCA’s six-event series that kicked off last fall. Tickets to Friday’s concert are available at the door or can be picked up in advance from the Reg Lenna Center for The Arts, Chautauqua Music, and Germaine and Pappalardo. They can also be purchased by calling 484-7070 or 487-1522.
The lineup for the JCA’s 2018-19 season will be announced at Friday’s concert, and season tickets will also be offered. For more information on the JCA, visit jamestownconcertassociation.org.
Winged Ox Players To Present ‘It Can’t Happen Here’ This Weekend: The Winged Ox Players will conclude its production of the play “It Can’t Happen Here” at the Willow Bay Theater — 21 E. Third St., Jamestown — with 7 p.m. performances Friday and Saturday. Described as a cautionary dark satire about the fragility of democracy, and how fascism can take hold even in the land of liberty,” “It Can’t Happen Here” is based on the Upton Sinclair novel and adapted for stage by Tony Taccone and Bennet S. Cohen.
Admission to the show is free, but free-will donations are encouraged. Proceeds from the performances will be used to establish a scholarship for a Chautauqua County senior with an interest in studying journalism at a two- or four-year college. There will also be a voter registration table at each performance.
The Winged Ox Players is a ministry of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church that engages the theatrical talents of the greater Jamestown area to present plays that inspire conversations about our community. Individuals interested in more information about the Players are asked to contact Deacon Pierce at 969-7412 or Steven Cobb at 499-5142.
County Museums, Historical Societies To Host Saturday Open Houses: Local residents and visitors are being encouraged to learn more about local history by participating in the first ever countywide Museum and Historical Society Open House Day, taking place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event is being presented by the Chautauqua County Museum Consortium, which is comprised of nearly two dozen different organizations and historical groups from throughout the county. The purpose for the open houses is to help raise awareness of the vital role that local history groups provide for their community by preserving and promoting our county’s rich past. Visitors are welcome to stop by their area museum and see items in their collections, learn more about upcoming programs and activities, and find out how they can help preserve local history by becoming a member or even a volunteer.
While many historical groups are offering free admission to the open house, not all are. Please be sure to contact your local organization prior to Saturday to find out if they are participating in this event.
Northwest Arena To Present ‘Wits ‘N Giggles’ Season Finale Saturday: The “Wits ‘N Giggles” stand-up comedy series at Northwest Arena will present its final installation of its 2017-18 season Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in the Jamestown Mattress Arena Club — located on the top floor of the arena. The night features Cam Rowe and Tyrone Davis.
Rowe, the feature act, is a stand-up comedian, reality TV personality and failed basketball star from Southfield Michigan. Rowe has been doing comedy for six years, and takes inspiration from his own life. One aspect of his life that works its way into his routine is his incredible size. Rowe is 6’9” tall, and along with being good for comedy, it also landed him a role on Tru TV’s “Storage Hunters.”
Davis, the headliner, has entertained audiences all over the country with his high energy and “take no prisoners” attitude. Whether he’s talking about his family, or politics, you never know where he’s going until he gets there. His comedic prowess has landed him multiple television and radio appearances with the likes of Todd Yohn, Spanky Brown, Killer Beaz, Bruce Bruce, and many more. He has also entertained U.S. troops stationed in Kuwait and Iraq.
Tickets for the event are $10 presale, $12 day of show and $5 for students. Must be 18 years of age and up to attend. To purchase tickets, call the arena box office at 484-2624 or visit northwestarena.com.
To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 487-1111, ext. 243 by Monday.
Karaoke with DJ Felony: 7 p.m., The Vegas Pad, 1064 Route 394 in Kennedy
Comedy open mic: 8 p.m., Labyrinth Press Co., 14 E. Fourth St. in Jamestown
Jules-R-Us Karaoke: 8 p.m., Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave. in Jamestown
Karaoke with DJ Xcite: 9 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
Karaoke with Felony Entertainment: 10:30 p.m., Forte, 114 E. Third St. in Jamestown
Doc and Willie: 6 p.m., The Wine Cellar, 309 N. Main St. in Jamestown
Bill Ward: 6 p.m., MJ’s Tavern, 10933 Mace Road in Randolph
“Peter Rabbit” screening: 7 p.m., Reg Lenna Center for The Arts, 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown
Evan Dillon: 8 p.m., Group Ther-happy, 103 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
The Release: 9 p.m., Big Shots, 674 Route 394 in Kennedy
Pressure Sensitive: 10 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
Toast, Roast and Boast with Paul Hoefler: 10 p.m., Shawbucks, 212 W. Second St. in Jamestown
DJ Bloomquist: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown
“Peter Rabbit” sensory friendly screening: 2 p.m., Reg Lenna Center for the Arts, 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown
Alex Kates and Dan Shanahan: 7 p.m., Craft Burgers and Brews, 60 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
Acoustic Confusion: 7 p.m., Group Ther-happy, 103 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
Screamin’ Lou: 8 p.m., Lakewood Legion, 174 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
Charity Nuse: 8:30 p.m., Busti Tap House, 792 Busti-Sugar Grove Road in Busti
The Freeze: 9 p.m., Big Shots, 674 Route 394 in Kennedy
Jules-R-Us Karaoke featuring Tami T: 9 p.m., Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave. in Jamestown
The Hallow Society with Joe Nameless: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown
We Speak Canadian: 10 p.m., Shawbucks, 212 W. Second St. in Jamestown
Dueling Pianos: 2 p.m., The Vegas Pad, 1064 Route 394 in Kennedy
Karaoke with DJ Xcite: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown
“The Death of Stalin” screening: 7 p.m., Reg Lenna Center for The Arts, 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown