BOOZE BLURBS:PlayDate PDX, a large indoor playground in Slabtown, has applied for a limited liquor license, presumably to serve parents. This is an excellent idea. The recently deceased Krakow Koffeehouse on Interstate Avenue will shortly be taken over by Northeast Alberta Street’s Black Cat Cafe.
NUT CRACKED: Good news for people who love ballet but hate magical toys and oversize rats: On the last night of Oregon Ballet Theatre’s new Holiday Revue, on Sunday, Dec. 19, at the Keller Auditorium, OBT Artistic Director Christopher Stowell made it official: The show was so popular, he announced on stage, the company was declaring it “a new annual OBT event.” Stowell’s gamble—creating and staging an original production in tandem with the company’s more traditional, The Nutcracker, a logistical challenge unto itself—seems to have paid off. According to WW dance critic Heather Wisner, the Revue’s a good-looking show with a sleek setting: hanging panels, a piano, a stack of gifts and a projection of a fire flickering on a TV screen. And its series of vignettes, inspired by the dancers’ own holiday memories, are set to hits spanning Vince Guaraldi to the Barenaked Ladies. Don’t worry, Sugar Plum Fairy fans, The Nutcracker will be back next year, too.
JAZZMATAZZ: If there was any lingering doubt about Blue Cranes being the hippest jazz outfit in Portland, the forthcoming Oversea Orbits LP—a nine-track remix album featuring local artists like experimental composer Ethan Rose, electronic music producer Jesse Munro Johnson (Gulls) and singer/songwriter/producer Gavin Castleton—ought to seal the deal. The album—a reworking of the Cranes’ 2010 album Revised Observations—also includes three videos, one of which is a welcome addition to the popular “Shredz” YouTube meme. The disc drops on Friday, Jan. 21, at a Secret Society Ballroom show featuring many of the artists from the remix album. Then, in April, Blue Cranes will tour the entire country via train and blog their trip for wweek.com—at which point the Cranes will probably cash in their massive stash of cool points for some travel mugs and lava lamps.
GIVE IT UP: Have you given your favorite local nonprofit some love yet in 2010? In the last three days of the year, WW’s Give!Guide wants to help you with that. Portlanders raised more than $900,000 for local nonprofits through the guide last year and have given nearly $700,000 since Nov. 17 this year. Visit wweek.com/giveguide to get the scoop on 79 of our favorite worthy groups. Donations close at midnight Friday, Dec. 31, so go donate your heart out.