While area children got a day to play in the snow this week, many adults did not. Some of us (me! me!) may be bitter about that. Here are some distractions for the warmer weekend:
Baseball on the brain
This week’s special guest is sports editor Todd Eschman, who is going to explain some Cardinals baseball history. Apparently, the offseason of 1981 was a pivotal time for Whitey Herzog.
“Over 368 days, Whitey, as both manager and general manager of the Cardinals, made eight trades involving 31 players,” Eschman said. “He rebuilt the Cardinals placing an emphasis on speed and defense and, in doing so, traded away many stars and popular players. Within a year, the Cardinals had posted the best record in baseball and within two years, won the World Series. By that time, they had only three players on the roster who were there when Whitey was hired.”
You can learn all the nitty-gritty details of those days from Herzog himself at the 16th annual Belleville Hilgards American Legion Baseball banquet on Sunday at the Scottish Rite Hall. The event opens at 5 p.m., dinner at 6:15 p.m. and the program at 7:15. Tickets are $36 per adult and $16 for those under 15.
Longtime high school coach Dennis Schutzenhofer will also be on hand for awards and inductions into the Hilgards Hall of Fame.
Call 618-233-1416 for more information.
Eagle overload? Not yet
If you just can’t get enough of eagles — and who could? — add a visit to the Lewis & Clark Confluence Tower in Hartford. Eric Snider of Chip Off the Block will do an ice carving of an eagle starting at noon Saturday, whittling a single block of 250-pound ice into a feathered frigid friend in about 90 minutes. The tower itself is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday with guided tours available. Admission to the tower is $4 adults; $3 seniors, active military and veterans; $2 children under 12; and free for children 2 and under.
Angie Snider of Chip Off The Block says the company has done ice eagles for several years and the carving will be on display “for the life of the carving.” She said below zero temperatures are helpful to keeping the ice solid, and the sun’s ultraviolet rays add to the breakdown.
“It will change a bit,” she said. “But most likely somebody will bump into it or touch it and it will break. Hopefully it will last through Sunday.”
After more than a dozen years of celebrating cultures through food, the Lincoln Place Heritage Association has learned a trick or two.
“We run out of food really fast because it’s so popular, so we’ve shortened the hours,” said president Norma Asadorian. The Granite City neighborhood became home to many Eastern European and Mexican immigrants in the early part of the 1900s, Asadorain said, and the organization is composed mostly of their descendents.
The annual Taste of Lincoln Place runs from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Granite City Township Hall at 2060 Delmar, in Granite City.
Food, including pastries, will run between $1 and $3. Dishes include Macedonian Spinach Zelnick, Armenian Pakhlava, Armenian Heresah, Mexican Chicken Mole with Rice and Italian Chicken Florentine with Farfalle.
When your favorite Five Things columnist is an occasional Civil War junkie, you should expect that a program on a Civil War Prison is going to make the cut.
Historian Don Huber will talk about a prison in Alton, built in 1833 as the state’s first prison, and its conscription into service as a military prison. It housed more than 11,000 captured Confederate soldiers and Union men and women for treasonable actions during a period of three years. The talk starts at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Madison County Archival Library, 801 N. Main St., Edwardsville. It’s free.
Dance like a chicken
For a very serious need, the theater folks are ready to have some fun with you.
Among the Miner’s Theatre needs are an audible fire alarm system before it can be reopened, so they’re putting on an adult comedy hypnosis show. The fundraiser starts at 8 p.m. Saturday at the American Legion Post 365 in Collinsville. Tickets are $15; you must be at least 18 to get in. For more information, call 618-345-2508.