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Recommended Events this Week

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FILM | You won’t be losing green on this movie night
Unity Environmental Film Series
Fri., Aug. 3
7:30 p.m.
$5 suggested donation
Unity Church of Charleston
2535 Leeds Ave.
N. Charleston
566-0600

With the success of events like Live Earth and a green focus in the presidential debates, Americans seem to be waking up to environmental issues. The Environmental Film Series at Unity Church of Charleston hopes to further spread awareness about conservation. “We want people to take away conviction, ideas, and tools they can use to make a difference day in and day out,” says event coordinator Preston Maultsby. Kilowatt Ours, which will be shown on Friday, is a regionally-produced film that looks at what really happens when you turn on your light switch, and how it ultimately impacts the environment. With a focus on the Southeast, the area of the country with the highest energy demand, the film offers advice on reducing consumption — and utility costs. The Future of Food, the next film in the series, will be shown Aug. 18. This award-winning documentary by Deborah Koons Garcia (Jerry’s widow) looks at disturbing changes in the farm fields and dinner tables of America. The final film of the series on Aug. 31, Green: The New Red, White and Blue, explores the need for clean, carbon-free energy, a “world energy revolution in the making.” Discussion will follow each of the films, and healthy snacks and child care will also be provided. —Erica Jackson FRIDAY

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THEATRE | Entertainment for the ADD
Sidetracked
Fri. & Sat.,
Aug. 3 & 4
8 p.m.
$20/advance, $25/door
Village Playhouse
730 Coleman Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant
478-1776

Sometimes it’s funny to watch people’s lives fall apart. Jay White stars in the one-man show Sidetracked, a comedy about an ADHD 30-something who can’t stop procrastinating. You’ll relate to him as he turns to music, baking cookies, and G.I. Joes to distract himself from writing an important speech, and then watch as he loses his job, house, and girlfriend within a matter of minutes. But you won’t leave this show depressed; White promises a happy ending. The Mt. Pleasant marriage counselor discovered Sidetracked on a Showtime special in the ‘80s. White was intrigued by the character, whose worst downfalls were what made him so special. He kept the show in the back of his mind, performing it in Texas in 2000, where he did community theatre. (He’s also acted in Chicago and upstate S.C.) He started out performing as a magician in Vegas, for which he credits his high-energy stage presence, but eventually went back to school to study psychology. “I went from pulling rabbits out of hats to habits out of rats,” he laughs. Part of the proceeds from the event will benefit the Ronald McDonald house. Don’t procrastinate; the show is this weekend only so get your tickets now. —Erica Jackson FRIDAY & SATURDAY

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FASHION | Fashionistas invade Avondale
Poe Studio’s Runway Show
Sat., Aug. 4
8 p.m.
Free
Voodoo Lounge
15 Magnolia Road
573-4884

Poe Studio owner Amanda Weld had an interesting idea to publicize an upcoming runway show: she protested it — much like artists John Duckworth and Kevin Harrison did for their famous Entropy show during Piccolo several years back. With a group of designers and friends, Weld carried signs reading “Poe Studio is for Babies” and “Protest Fashion” around Avondale, hoping to draw attention to the event. Though they’ve put on quite a few trunk shows, this is the first full-on runway show Poe Studio has staged. The show, at the deliciously kitschy Voodoo Lounge right across the street, will feature unique, handmade pieces by local clothing and jewelry designers like Spinster, Momie, Laughing Raven Designs, and John Pundt. Some national designers will be on hand as well, like Lucky Fish from Brooklyn and Adrianne Ruffin of Miami. Fashionistas can put in their requests for the pieces the night of the show and pick them up the next morning at Poe, coffee and doughnuts provided. And if you fall in love with a skirt, don’t hesitate: these are one-of-a-kind pieces available on a first-come-first-served basis. Prices are surprisingly affordable, with clothing on average $70 and jewelry around $30. Weld promises an exciting halftime show, and while she won’t spill about the details, we’ve heard rumors of belly dancers, fire jugglers, and an airbrush tattoo artist. D.J. D-Rock will be on hand to add to the urban-cool vibe of the evening, so get there early, grab some dinner and a cocktail, and support some up-and-coming designers… It’s hard to think of a more fashionable way to spend a Saturday night. —Erica Jackson SATURDAY

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COMEDY | Thank you, I’ll be here all weekend...
Comedy Zone at Tonik
Thurs.-Sat., Aug. 2-4
7 & 9 p.m.
$10, $12 (Sat.)
Tonik
479 King St.
577-8844

The Comedy Zone has long been the red-headed stepchild of the Charleston entertainment scene. Dissed, mistreated, and ignored, it’s spent time in more Charleston bars than a sixth-year college co-ed. Part of this is because — through no fault of the Comedy Zone’s — the popularity of regional stand-up comedy has been in freefall for years. As a result, promotion has often outmatched the bill (how many of these guys can really be the “funniest man in America”?). But more than that, it’s no secret that comedy in this town is owned and operated by one conglomerate: the improvisers and sketch comics of The Have Nots! and their 30-plus-member strong troupe at Theatre 99. That company’s success, however, may actually beget similar fortunes for the latest incarnation of the Comedy Zone when it opens for the umptillionth time this weekend in a new location: Tonik Nightclub on King Street. Theatre 99’s stand-up programming in Tonik for its annual Charleston Comedy Festival and last spring’s Piccolo Spoleto program have been smash hits; if Tonik owner Lawson Roberts captures the same energy and crowds, the Zone may finally have found its permanent home. This weekend’s headliner is David L., a Tarheel whose repertoire ranges from improv to stand-up to music. Opening is Greg Lausch, who’s been performing high-energy stand-up on the road for 10 years. Tonik will provide appetizers, desserts, and full bar service. You know what they say: if it’s not funny, you’re not drinking enough. —Patrick Sharbaugh THURSDAY

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FUND-RAISER | What’s a pirate do for culture? Dinn-arrgh theatre.
Pirate Murder Mystery at the Old Exchange
Sat., Aug. 4
7:30 p.m.
$25
Old Exchange
122 East Bay St.
727-2165

Get out your eye patch and wench-ware, because pirates are taking over the Old Exchange Building downtown, and you’re invited to join in. For the third year, Friends of the Old Exchange hosts a Pirate Murder Mystery in one of the country’s most historically significant colonial buildings. After kicking off the night with a wine reception, the show begins. Written by local enthusiast Don Pittman, “They Deserved to Die” is roughly based on real characters and events from Charleston’s history, but it’s a parody above all else — don’t expect this to be an educational experience. Expect a lot of audience interaction with the cast, made up of enthusiastic amateurs including local storytellers and tour guides. During intermission, guests will be treated to refreshments compliments of the Bull Dog Tavern’s cook “Gassy Tuesday.” After that, it’s prize time, so make sure you’ve got an awesome costume if you want to win something. Tour guide Alan Stello, who plays Constable Stevens, jokes that they’d like to take the show to Broadway one day … or Piccolo Spoleto. —Erica Jackson SATURDAY

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