BLAINESWORLD #1113 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2





Section 12A, NC events

(1) The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) at HART
January 26 – February 4

Whether you love the bard, hate the bard, don’t know the bard, or are simply bored–you should come see this hilarious show with Oxymoron Improv members George Heard. Graham Livingood, and Strother Stingley! We lovingly roast Shakespeare and the modern world for 2 weekends at HART in Waynesville. Limited seating, so get your reservations now!

For tickets, please click:

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(2) Help Build Community Cat Shelters
Sunday, February 4 at 12- 3 p.m.
OHenrys Asheville
237 Haywood St, Asheville, North Carolina 28801

Unfortunately, there’s a lot more winter left, folks, and we’re running short on community cat shelters. Help us build some more to keep Asheville’s community cats safe and warm.

O’Henry’s has graciously agreed to let us use their space to build the shelters. Please join us on Sunday, February 4 from 12-3pm at O’Henry’s, 237 Haywood St, Asheville, NC 28801.

If you are unable to attend, you can still help by donating materials or Lowe’s gift cards so we can purchase materials.

Here’s a list of what we need:
-new or used plastic storage bins (18 gallon
or 30 gallon any variety)
-Gorilla tape (
-Reflectix roll insulation (
-bales of straw for bedding

For questions about this event or to donate, please email

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(3) We are so excited to be performing our Love is A Rose show, in an acoustic, intimate setting!!! Joining us for the evening will be the masterful James Vandenberg on guitars and backing vocals as well as the versatile bassman to all the stars, Zack Page! You’ll hear many of Linda Ronstadt’s classics: When Will I Be Loved, You’re No Good, Blue Bayou, Desperado, That’ll Be the Day, Poor Poor Pitiful me and more! By coming to this concert, you’ll be helping us to continue this fantabulous trajectory we’re on to take the show out on the road! Part of the money we make for this, will go directly into our coffers for our initial tour that starts in early 2019! We’d love to see your face in the place! For tickets:

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Section 12B, PA/NJ events

(1) Kelsey Theatre at Mercer County Community College:

Ken Ludwig’s Twentieth Century

Fridays, Jan. 26 & Feb. 2, 2018 at 8pm

Saturdays, Jan. 27 & Feb. 3 at 8pm

Sundays, Jan. 28 & Feb. 4 at 2pm

Attention, please! Twentieth Century Limited for New York and Boston now ready on Track 14. All aboard! Get away with Theater To Go back to the1930’s. The fun begins when an egomaniacal Broadway producer boards the Twentieth Century Limited with the intent of winning back his leading lady, now a temperamental Hollywood star, who is just as determined to ignore his advances, both professional and personal. This hilarious adaptation of the classic movie is truly a riot on rails!

Tickets – $18 adults, $16 seniors, $14 students/children

(2) Actors’ Net of Bucks County:

Witness for the Prosecution
By Agatha Christie
Jan 19 – Feb 4, 2018

Did that handsome young man murder his elderly benefactress? Only his German war-bride knows for sure. As any Christie fan knows, things are not always what they seem.


Facebook: ActorsNET, AKA Actors’ NET of 


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BLAINESWORLD #1112 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2 


(2) Susanna Euston: Blaine, this is really sweet! Refreshing after the continually awful news from the general media.

(3) Margie Zack: We elected a man who doesn’t know the words to our national anthem. Thx is, Jerry Hinz!!



Section 12A, NC events

(1) ‘Are You Ready to Start a Small Business?’

Sat, Jan 27 at 9:00 AM – 12 Noon

AB-Tech Enka Campus, 1459 Sand Hill Road, Small Business Center, Room 2046, Candler, NC 28715

It is not enough to have a great idea for a small business. This FREE seminar is designed to highlight the critical requirements for starting a business, including topics such as how to test the viability of your concept, identifying and reaching customers, and funding your business for growth and difficult times. It will also challenge you to consider the qualities required of successful business owners like leadership, persistence, and resilience. Best for those considering starting a business.

Instructor Eddie Dorf is an entrepreneur with over 40 years experience in manufacturing, production and importing. He has owned a Women’s fashion shoe factory in New York, souvenir T-shirt business and currently gift company. Eddie has a vast, well-rounded understanding of all aspects of running a successful company.

To register:, then ‘seminars and events.’

(2) Marilyn Sholin: The Art of Wine with Marilyn Sholin

Wednesday, Jan. 24, from 5-7 p.m.

At: Post 25 Kitchen & Lounge
2155 Hendersonville Road, Arden, North Carolina

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(3) Citizen Academy applications now open for Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office Citizen’s Academy.

The link is now active and accepting applications. View our previous post for more information or call 250-4427 with questions or EMail We look forward to meeting with you!

Note: I participated in the above and found it a valuable experience.


Section 12B, PA/NJ events

(1) Ugly Duckling Reveals Its Beauty in “Honk! A Musical” at MCCC’s Kelsey Theatre Feb. 9-18 

West Windsor, N.J.Join The Yardley Players at Mercer County Community College’s (MCCC’s) Kelsey Theatre for a wise, funny tale about a chick named “Ugly.” Shunned by the other barnyard animals for being different, he ultimately finds acceptance when his special kind of beauty is revealed. “Honk! The Musical” comes to the Kelsey stage Fridays, Feb. 9 and 16 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, Feb. 10 and 17 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and Sundays, Feb. 11 and 18 at 2 p.m.

Kelsey Theatre is located on the college’s West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road. A reception with the cast and crew follows the opening night performance on Feb. 9.

An award-winning family show direct from Britain, “Honk” offers a universal message about compassion and acceptance – for ducks and people too!  British playwrights George Stiles and Anthony Drewe’s witty musical is based on Hans Christian Anderson’s classic tale, The Ugly Duckling. Described as a story “for anyone who has ever felt like honking when the rest of the world goes quack,” the show is filled with memorable musical numbers, creative choreography and charming costumes. Winner of three awards for Best Musical, including the 2000 Laurence Olivier Award, “Honk” has enjoyed immense popularity with audiences in the United Kingdom and on tours worldwide.

Starring in “Honk” are Zachary Benedetti of Ewing as Ugly; Nicholas Pecht of Hamilton as Cat; Jessica Corriveau of Plainsboro as Ugly’s Mother, Ida; and Dan Mucha of Yardville as Ugly’s Father, Drake. Also featured are Gina Drigant of Bensalem, Pa., Stacy Danka of Allentown; Andrew Millin of Perrineville, and ducklings Nicholas Benedetti of Ewing, Claire Corriveau of Plainsboro, Dayley Katz of West Windsor, and Troy Vallery of Yardville.

Ensemble members include Amy Besselieu of Lawrenceville, Aimee Clark of Lawrenceville, Gabrielle Dirusso of Princeton Junction, Nolah Flynn of Yardley, Pa., Hope Ghaffoor of Yardville, Renee Gilmore of Yardley, Pa., Sydney Gilmore of Yardley, Pa., Rio Kiernan of Allentown, Kristin Kraus and Leslie Kraus of Levittown, Pa., James Legete of Bristol, Pa., Jessica Marinkowski of Columbus, Lili Meddahi of Robbinsville, Daniel Montero of Ewing, Anna Perno of Hamilton, Nicole Potenza of West Windsor, Alexys Pulsinelli of Bordentown, Shreya Savur of Robbinsville, and Casara Sexauer of Hamilton.

The production staff includes Producer Jill Katz, Director Tom Bessellieu, Choral Director Julie Braeckman, Orchestra Conductor Buzz Herman, Choreographer Laura Murey Ghaffoor, Costumer Louisa Murey, Stage Manager Tristan Takacs, and Set Designer James Kenna.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors, and $16 for students and teens. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Kelsey Box Office at 609-570-3333 or online at  Kelsey Theatre is wheelchair accessible, with free parking next to the theater.  For a complete listing of adult and children’s events, visit the Kelsey website or call the box office for a brochure.

(2) At Actors’ Net of Bucks County

Witness for the Prosecution
By Agatha Christie
Jan 19 – Feb 4, 2018

Did that handsome young man murder his elderly benefactress? Only his German war-bride knows for sure. As any Christie fan knows, things are not always what they seem.


Facebook: ActorsNET, AKA Actors’ NET of Bucks County



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BLAINESWORLD #1111 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2

(1) Ilene Logelin: Just want to wish you and Cynthia a happy and healthy New Year! I enjoy checking in on you both to see how you’re doing from time to time. Please let Cynthia know that I appreciate her encouragement, seven years ago, to come to Asheville. I just wanted her to know how happy I am living here. I knew it was the place for me the moment I arrived. Living here has brought me great joy. I love taking classes at the OLLI, gardening, creating sculptures at the Senior Opportunity Center and enjoying the wonderful music venues throughout the area. Occasionally I am able to bake or cook for various occasions, which also makes me happy as this has been one of my passions. …. I loved Joke 2.

(2) Chris Field-Funk: I enjoyed your newsletter, but not the joke about the Pope and President Trump.

Response: Thank you for sharing your opinion. My intent was not to offend you (or anybody else), and if I did, I’m sorry for having done so. … My take: Although I try, I can’t make everybody happy all the time. After all, I’m not a chocolate bar!

(3) Michaeleen Lee: Just read this in the current issue ofRunners World. “To protest local gerrymandering, an Asheville, North Carolina resident creates a zigzagging racecourse along the district line to bring awareness to the issue.” Had you heard about that?

Response: Unfortunately, yes. NC is a great place to live because of the weather, things to do, etc. … The polics, though, leave much to be desired. … Ironically, just after I got your email, I came across this article:

(4) Patty Alexander: I’m glad that you and Cynthia made it home safely from your dinner. Black ice is nothing to mess with. I’ve found that out.

(5)  Cappy Tosetti: A crazy world out there. Another dishonest person.
First hint……my monthly credit score report notified me of a company, Walmart Synchrony put in a request for my credit score. Not happy….tried to figure it out… no avail.

Then today a letter from the full company name…..Walmart Synchrony Bank Creditor arrived saying they were processing a credit application for me.
I called….quite upset. Never applied for a credit application from Walmart…..
They had my name, but not my full name. Last four numbers of my SS number were not the same.

Seems on January 1 someone online tried to apply for a line of credit in my name. I straightened them out. Would have been nice if they sent the letter first before checking on my credit score….which is good, but every time a company checks, it lowers your score. No idea why, but it does.

They canceled the application for me. They have no way, so they say, of tracing the person who applied….oh yeah, they used my name when applying.

We need to be aware.

So frustrating, irritating and creepy. People out there doing such dishonest things. One wonders what else they are trying to pull.
Everything seems to be in order. I hope.

We have to be diligent…..if and when we know what’s going on. Scary.


Section 12A, NC events

(1) Kai Elijah Hamilton:

Note: I just saw the above play and enjoyed it. You will, too.

(2) Kathleen Meyers Leinder: Open-Handed Performance, Asheville Fringe Festival

January 26: 5:00 Performance( $13.00) at 54 1/2 Broadway
Limited tickets available for interactive performance:

Installation 12:00-5:00 Free community engagement 

1. (of a blow) delivered with the palm of the hand.
2. giving freely; generous.

Open-Handed is a response to the walls that separate us and the concept that our ability to connect or divide community is in our own hands. Stories of conflict and connection in a multi-media installation and movement performance by Kathy Leiner in collaboration with dancers, Shari Azar, Elizabeth Huntley, Melissa Lugo, and Mikhale Sherrill.

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(3) Kaleo Wheeler (about an event in nearby Spartanburg, NC):

(4) Barrie Barton: Even though I didn’t plan to have a Learning Lab in January, sometimes you can’t ignore what your audience wants!

Over the winter, I had 4 private coaching clients request a workshop to join together and learn more. This terrific convergence of readiness and timing made it possible for me to offer the next Speakers Learning Lab in January!

We start in 10 days…there are only 4 spots remaining…do you want to join us?

1) “I was so nervous about doing this, but after our first session I feel comfortable with your leadership and this group,” is one of the most common reflections I hear after the first session.

2) This Lab, Master The Art of Speaking with Confidence, Clarity, and Connection, is now six weeks. This length gets optimal results for you.

3) This Lab will teach the same concepts that my previous sold-out Speakers Learning Labs have implemented with the addition of a pre & post video for you to see, first hand, your improvements.

There are some skills you can’t develop on your own without feedback and a professional “mirror.” Do you want to make a bigger impact in your office, for your organization, or within your professional relationships? You will be guided by me in a safe and intimate group-learning environment to hone and improve speaking delivery skills while generating well-organized content.

As a result of this class, you will have a strategy map of how to write, rehearse and deliver your next presentation.

Six weekly live sessions with me and your supportive group
Personalized and group feedback
Handbook with lessons, tips and information
Editing and Writing support
On-site video (pre- and post-workshop)
Two individual speaking opportunities

By completing the Lab, you will have a 5-minute presentation ready to deliver to an audience.

Limited Enrollment is 8 participants.

Lab Begins: Tuesday, Jan. 23
Last class: Tuesday, Feb. 27
Meets at: MindSpring Consulting
966 Tunnel Road
Asheville, NC 28805
Time: 5:30 – 7pm
Cost: $325

Make $125 “Save My Seat” Deposit.
You are ready to go!

To register, please click:

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Section 12B, PA/NJ events

(1) Fran Orlando: Please join us for horderves and refreshments at the Bruce Katsiff: River Town Portraits, 1973-1983 gallery reception.

In 1973, fresh from graduate school and the new chair of the art department at Bucks County Community College, Bruce Katsiff set out with his large-format camera to get to know his neighbors in Lumberville and Point Pleasant, PA. These carefully composed photographs reveal the intimate character of village life and remain powerful today for their balance of emotion and technical precision. Bruce Katsiff: River Town Portraits 1973-1983 is timed to coincide with a new monograph with essays by curator Liz K. Sheehan; Jeffrey Marshall, Director of the Heritage Conservancy; and an appreciation by Jo Katsiff.

All events at Bucks County Community College.

Artist talk: Wednesday, January 31, 3 – 4:30 p.m., Grupp Hall, room 257
Gallery reception: Wednesday, January 31, 5 – 7 p.m. Curator’s talk at 6:15 p.m.
Photography Tech Talk with Bruce Katsiff: Friday, March 2, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Hicks, room 120
Gallery reception and business card exchange: Thursday, March 8, 6 – 7 PM
“Bucks County River Towns” talk with Jeffrey L. Marshall: Thursday, March 8, 7 PM, Music & Multimedia Center, room 001

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EVENT:  WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTIONAgatha Christie’s classic courtroom drama about a dashing young man accused of murdering an older woman for her inheritance takes center stage at The Heritage Center Theatre.  Andrena Wishnie directs stars Tom Stevenson as the lawyer for the defense, John Helmke as the defendant and Dara Lewis as the accused’s wife.  Costarring (alphabetically) Ken Ammerman, James “Jim” Cordingley, DJ Holcombe AND Jim Palmer.  Featuring (alphabetically) Keli Ganey, Tim Irvine, Griffin Kemp, Marilyn Licciardello, Amanda McCarther & Tom Smith.  Stage Managed by Keli Ganey.  Set design by John Helmke and Jim Cordingley.  Lighting design by Andrena Wishnie.  Costume coordination by Cheryl Doyle. Presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

SHOW DATES:  Jan. 19 – Feb. 4, 2018.  (Nine performances only)

TIMES: Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m. and Sunday, 2 p.m.

PLACE: The Heritage Center, 635 North Delmorr Avenue (Route 32), Morrisville, PA – near the Calhoun Street Bridge.

ADMISSION:  $20 for adults, $17 for seniors (62+), $15 for WHYY cardholders and students, $10 child (under 13).  Group rates available for ten or more.

 TO RESERVE:  Call the nonprofit Actors’ NET at 215-295-3694 or email

ON THE INTERNET:  The Company’s website is  Social networking includes Facebook page — “ActorsNET, AKA Actors’ NET of Bucks County” — and Twitter name @actorsnet.

 COMING NEXT:  Weekends, March 2 – 18, 2018, ActorsNET presents Lolita Chakrabati’s RED VELVET – a biographical drama about Ira Aldridge, an African-American actor who shocked the professional theatre world in the 1830s by assuming the title role of OTHELLO.  Shunned in Great Britain, he went on to become a European star!  Kyrus Keenan Westcott stars as Ira Aldridge.  ActorsNET Artistic Director and Co-Founder Cheryl Doyle directs.

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BLAINESWORLD #1110 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2

(1) Blue Wine Is Real But Here’s Why It’s Making People Angry

(2) Bray Creech: Is the Michelle Baker in your photo an artist, by chance? We bought an art piece from a Michelle Baker at the Open Doors art auction last year and love it. Just curious if that’s the same person or not.

Response: One and the same. Michelle is both a talented photographer and artist.



Section 12, NC events

A. Philippe Andre Coquet:

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B. Amanda Levesque:

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BLAINESWORLD #1109 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2

(1)  Relive your favorite “A Christmas Story” moments at the real house in Cleveland

(2) Barbara Firestone: Is the movie deal for real and did you join it?

Response: Yes and yes. I’ve used it twice, so far. Takes a little time to get used to it, but definitely  worth it.

(3) Jean Brenner: I am so glad Cynthia did everything she was told by the doctor and now you are so much better!

(4) John Murray: Suffered a bout of that global amnesia a while ago. Weird I thought. I was driving to the Acme in Newtown when I couldn’t remember the date, i.e. year, month, or day. I was still able to drive but was quite concerned about not knowing, “was it Christmas time?”, “am I still teaching at the College” and other obvious things that weren’t with me. I assured myself that I’d cure this when I got to the store and bought a newspaper and would find out the date. Fortunately the incident passed before I got to the market. It lasted about 15 minutes.

Told my doctor about it. He said he had many horror stories about this type of thing, like the Judge who was actively on a trial and not knowing who the parties before him were. Scary.

He changed my colesterol meds, and I haven’t had any incidents like that, again.

Don’t know if that’s the answer but so far so good for me.

Good luck with your moment in history.

(5) Herb Spiegel: I had TGA. Two years ago. No reoccurrence. SCARY. Couldnt remember anything. By 3a.m. I named the entire starting lineup of the 1946 Red Sox.

(6) Susan and George Beck: We are so glad you are okay. Chill out on your ironman activities!

(7) Bray Creech: Great weekly email. Glad you’re around to keep sending it after your health scare! And glad I’m around to read it. Guess I’m just feelin’ grateful all the way around. Thanks for placing my Citizen Times article in your email.

(8) Julien: I wish you good health. A 2018 of World Peace, respect for our military, our police, less world hunger, and a new awareness of our ourselves. The world has headed so far in the wrong direction I pray that we find ourselves and move forward in a positive direction. If we wish each other positive “hellos” just maybe we will begin to see a glimmer of renewal at the of the tunnel. Peace to you Blaine and your beautiful bride. God bless.

(9) Gladys Podhurst: That was quite a scare you had. I hope you are fully recovered and back to normal. … Jerry and I are back in Asheville for the winter. … We want to wish you both a very happy and healthy new year.



Section 12A, NC events

(1) Poetry Night with Barbie Angell
Tuesday, Jan. 9, from 6:30-8 p.m.
At The Hop Ice Cream Cafe
640 Merimon Ave., Asheville

Families and Poetry fans of All Ages! The Hop on Merrimon is excited to bring to you a family-friendly evening filled with magical words, metered and otherwise! Local Poet, celebrity and good friend, Barbie Angell, will be performing many of her original works both from her book of children’s poetry, Roasting Questions, and more. Additionally, if anyone – kids or adults – wanted to read their own poems – or simply their favorite poem written by someone else – this will be an excellent opportunity! All performers will receive a Free Kiddie Scoop of Ice Cream 🙂

For more work by Barbie Angell you can visit

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(2) 2018 Open Auditions!
Hosted by Attic Salt Theatre Company

Sunday, January 21, 2018 at 10 AM-2 PM
Attic Salt Theatre Company
2002 Riverside Dr., Studio O, Asheville, North Carolina 28804

We are holding a general open audition for all projects happening in 2018. This includes shows for both family and general audiences. Seeking all races, ethnicities, genders and ages for a host of projects including shows for family audiences, main stage shows, readings and special events.

Specifically seeking one male, 50-65, for our April production of Mass Appeal.

Sides will be provided. Please contact us with questions.

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Section 12B, PA/NJ event

Andy Borowitz in Philadelphia
Thursday, March 8, 2018 from 8-10 p.m.

The Keswick Theatre
291 N Keswick Ave, Glenside, Pennsylvania 19038

For tickets, please click:

Note: This guy rocks. I’m soooo sorry I won’t be in the area to see him.

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BLAINESWORLD #1108 (Please send any comments to:

 Section 2, part 2


(2) Art Mayhew: In my newspaper career, one of my joys was, believe it or not, reading obits. (I once considered writing a book of the best obits I’d seen.) At any rate, a good one recently appeared in the Courier Times. After noting her career and family, it concluded:

“As per her request, there will be no service. In her own words, ‘If you didn’t have the time for me while I was alive, then don’t put the dog on me when I am dead.'”



(4) Ken Greenfield: Thank you for introducing us to Mrs Maisel. We really enjoyed.

(5) Trissa King: 5 Research-Based Ways to Say No During the Holidays

(6) Mary Lou Sartoris: Have you seen LOVING VINCENT? Awesome movie due to the incredible animation which totally mimics his paintings. The whole movie production was quite an undertaking. Nelson and I were riveted!!

(7) Mark Beloyan:

Note: For more information, please click:

(8) Rock Eblen: Happy Holidays! It’s that time of year for generosity and helping others. I’m reaching out to family, friends, and folks that know my work to get our crowdfunding off to a good start. ANY contribution is great!

I personally don’t get paid for the work involved in this project, but I’m sincere about the message and believe it can be helpful and even life-saving for at-risk young people.

Perhaps you or someone you know has been bullied in the past or recently. It’s an awful feeling. With the power of social media the problem has intensified. Teenage depression and suicide is at an all time high.

Amy’s Alien is a short film with a big message about compassion and tolerance. That’s what this time of year is about. Please help us get this story told. Simply click the link below for more info and to see the beginning song of the film. MUCH THANKS! **and please forward this email to your friends also**

(9) Mike Martinelli: THE GREATEST SHOWMAN ** 1/2

Story of B.T Barnum and how he started the famous circus. I wanted to like this film more than I did. There are 3 songs that are good, This Is Me (Golden Globe best song nominee) a very powerful song that the circus performers sing when Barnum snubs them from attending a fancy party, a touching ballad sung by Michelle Williams called Tightrope a beautiful ballad about her love for her husband and the final number From Now On. The rest of the score isn’t. The choreography was very well done, but it’s a movie that would have worked better without being a musical, which is something I rarely say.

Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron Zendaya all give great performances.

The story opens with Barnum and his friendship with future wife Charity. Her father didn’t like him as a child and never liked him being his son in law. The rise of the circus is a drain on the marrage as is his freindship with a rising singing star Jenny Lind. When the circus building is burned down and there is no money to rebuild Barnum gets the idea to set the show up in a tent and we have history and the final song From Now On.

This movie is something that should be seen on the big scree,  and I do believe it will do well at the box office. The audience last night loved it and clapped at the end.


Section 12A, NC events

(1) Tracy Schmidt: Asheville friends, join us for some holiday quiet…Rumi, Hafiz and my own work (new work by the way) at White Horse Black Mountain. Thursday the 28th, 7:30. I am particularly excited to be working with an amazing group of musicians: Scott Sheerin, Michael Ivy, William Elon DeHaro and Allen Roda. To purchase advance tickets (10.00/12.00) go or just show up!

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(2) Rodney Smith:

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Section 12B, PA/NJ events

(1) Actors’ Net of Bucks County:


Witness for the Prosecution
By Agatha Christie
Jan 19 – Feb 4, 2018

Did that handsome young man murder his elderly benefactress? Only his German war-bride knows for sure. As any Christie fan knows, things are not always what they seem.


Facebook: ActorsNET, AKA Actors’ NET of Bucks County

(2) Broadway Blockbuster,  ‘West Side Story,’ Coming to MCCC’s Kelsey Theatre for Three Weekends, Jan. 5 to 21

Maria (Tara Keelen) and Tony (Mason Kugelman). Photo by Robert Terrano.

“The Jets are gonna have their day…tonight.” From left are David Williamson as Gee-Tar, Evan Krug as Riff, and (Matthew Snyder as A-Rab. Photo by Robert Terrano.

Shark girls, from left, Kate Bilenko as Francisca, Lindsey Jordon as Teresita, Lorraine Perri as Anita, Jenna Zielinski as Rosalia, and Nicole Farina-Machin as Estella. Photo by Robert Terrano.

West Windsor, N.J. – The Sharks and the Jets are preparing to do battle over their small piece of New York City’s Upper West Side, while star-crossed lovers Tony and Maria are on a collision course to tragedy. PinnWorth Productions proudly presents “West Side Story,” considered one of the all-time greats of Broadway theater. The show comes to Mercer County Community College’s (MCCC’s) Kelsey Theatre for three weekends: Fridays, Jan. 5, 12 and 19 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, Jan. 6, 13 and 20 at 8 pm.; and Sundays, Jan. 7, 14 and 21 at 2 p.m.

Kelsey Theatre is located on the college’s West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road. A reception with the cast and crew follows the opening night performance on Jan. 5.

With its dark themes, stunning musical score, complex dance numbers, and a focus on social issues, the show broke new ground when it premiered on Broadway in 1957. The famed Leonard Bernstein score, with lyrics by a young Stephen Sondheim, includes such unforgettable numbers as “Something’s Coming,” “Maria,” “America,” “Somewhere,” “Tonight,” “I Feel Pretty,” “One Hand, One Heart,” “Officer Krupke,” and “Cool.” The production was nominated for six Tony Awards including Best Musical. A film version followed in 1961 and was nominated for 11  Academy Awards and won 10, including Best Picture.

The PinnWorth cast stars Mason Kugelman of Rumson as Tony; Tara Keelen of Bloomfield as Maria; Lorraine C. Perri of Florence as Anita; Evan Krug of Edison as Riff; Kevin Albanese of Woodbridge as Bernardo; Erica Boyea of South Plainfield as Anybodys; Peter Sauer of Yardley, Pa., as Doc; Joseph A. Zedeny of East Windsor as Lt. Schrank; David Walter of Lawrenceville as Krupke; and Diana Puertas of Somerville as Gladhand.

Featured as members of the Jets are: Nicholas Buonvicino of Green Brook as Action; Sean Dickinson of Jackson as Big Deal; Nicholas Kianka of Hamilton as Snowboy; Matthew Robertson of Yardley, Pa., as Diesel; Liam Smith of Yardley, Pa., as Baby John; Matthew Snyder of Levittown, Pa., as A-Rab; and David Williamson of Flemington as Gee-Tar. Members of the rival gang, the Sharks, are         Charlie Gormley of Morrisville, Pa., as Chino; Connor P. McDowell of Levittown, Pa., as Pepe; Nicolas Fallacaro of Yardley, Pa.; James LeGette of Levittown, Pa., Michael Mottram of Cream Ridge; Jeff Rosenthal of Dayton; and Hunter Stahley of Millstone Township.

The Jets Girls include Cait Crowley of Bloomfield as Velma; Emily O’Sullivan of Hamilton as Graziella; Deanna Flanagan of Rahway as Minnie; Madison Kotnarowski of Mercerville; Lauren Suchenski of Yardley, Pa., Rachel Tovar of West Orange; Nicole Farina-Machin of Columbus; and Kelly Vallery of Hamilton. The Shark Girls include Jenna Zielinski of Scotch Plains as Rosalia; Haley Schmalbach of Palmyra as Consuela; Kate Bilenko of Philadelphia, Pa., as Francisca; Lindsey Jordon of Edison; Reva Sangal of West Windsor; and Zoey Aliah Woody of New Brunswick.

The production team is led by Co-producers LouJ Stalsworth and Kate Pinner, Director LouJ Stalsworth, Choreographer Koren Zander, Music Director François Suhr, Costume and Set Designer Kate Pinner, Lighting Designer Robert Terrano, Sound Designer Evan Paine, and Stage Manager Dennis Tolentino.

Tickets are $20 for all and may be purchased online or by calling the Kelsey Box Office at 609-570-3333.

Kelsey Theatre is wheelchair accessible, with free parking next to the theater. For a complete listing of adult and children’s events, visit the Kelsey website or call the box office for a brochure.

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BLAINESWORLD #1107 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, FYI

(1) Laura Douglas Olson: My only first-hand knowledge is via my work as a Guardian ad Litem. The mom on my case tried to self-dedetox using Kratom and ended up in the hospital. Horrible side effects, including addiction. I’d say to steer clear! Read the following:

(2) Annette Wells: Here is a long email about alternatives to opioids and nsaids and kratom…probably more info than you wanted…hope it’s helpful

Amongst other things, I am an herbalist. In professional herbalist circles, kratom is known as a dangerous drug. It is also about to be banned by the fda. It is marketed as a non toxic non addictive alternative to opioids. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It is virtually unstudied, it’s effects on the liver and kidneys may be dangerous, esp in combination with other drugs— and ther have been dozens of deaths associated with its use. It can be a strong sedative. The effects can be cumulative. So people have overdosed, looking for a narcotic like effect, which it doesn’t quite give, so more is taken. It can be a pain reliever, not a very strong one. It’s narcotic effects are not pleasant like opioids, and it causes a hangover in many people, mental fog and unstable gait.

When an herb is taken in pill form, or isolated component form, it’s a drug. Herbs are not any safer than pharmaceuticals. That they are safer is a myth. Herb tea is kitchen medicine, and a very safe way to take herbs. Tinctures are a step stronger and still relatively safe if take in moderAtion. Some good tinctures for pain relief are Skullcap and motherwort. Tinctures are best taken my themselves, not in a mixture. ( think of NyQuil:NyQuil is a mixture of many different medicines, and has lots of contraindications and more of a chance of clashing with other meds than just plain benedryl .) so one could start perhaps by trying Skullcap tincture, at the recommended dose. And seeing if it helps, giving it at least a week.

Essential oils are and even more concentrated, what that means is they include the entire immune system of the plant, the toxins the plant produces to repel predators. So they should not be taken internally. There are essential oils such as Plai (well diluted in carrier oils) that can be used topically to reduce chronic pain and inflammation.

Turmeric is great for inflammation and pain, and a Little black pepper take with it helps it to work. Only take the whole ground spice , or grate the fresh root, the isolated curcumin has not been studied. Turmeric is not an herb that is safe to take for long periods of time. It eventually creates digestive and other problems. ( its is a well studied herb in traditional Chinese medicine, with properties and effects well known through thousands of years of use) it is good to take for a couple of weeks on then a month off, or taken every three days…just not long term everyday use.

Acupuncture, Massage, meditation with an anti inflammatory diet, can also be used as a substitute for nsaid, and opioids…the downside is it takes work and consistency, the upside is that those practices can also significantly improve overall health, emotional health, energy levels and longevity.

Dr. Weil has a good anti inflammatory diet that is not extreme and doesn’t require lots of supplements or cutting out carbs, etc.

If you want more info or resources just let me know.

(3) Coy Theobalt: I have tried kratom on a number of occasions and will continue to do so. I would place it in the same category as Kava, if you have ever tried that. Both of these are medicinal plants from south America I believe. They have been used for thousands of years by the indigenous peoples in those areas to combat pain and they are also used in religious ceremonies. There is a new Kava/ Kratom bar on reems creek in Weaverville Lora and I would be glad to meet you there and share the experience with you, if you are up for it. The side effects that I’m aware of only come into play when the medicine is mixed with alcohol. So don’t plan on drinking before or after . I would say it can be addictive for those who might have addiction problems, but it is no different than alcohol in my mind. You just need to be aware that you utilize it as a medicine or a relaxer every now and then. I hope this has cleared up some things for you. Again, let us know if you would like to meet up.

(4) Beth Byas: I actually have 2 bottles of Kratom.   One strain is supposed to be more for daytime use, as it doesn’t cause sleepiness.   the other I got for bedtime.    I have to say that even though I got them many months ago, I really haven’t experimented enough with them to give any informed feedback.  However, there has been a lot of talk by the FDA about curtailing the sale of it.   I believe that is due to pressure from big Pharma, just as they are also going after essential oils.  People have been discovering these natural alternatives and cutting into RX territory.  Kratom has been used for many, many years in Asia with great results.   My only concern, as with ANYTHING that comes from Asia, is the purity and safety of the product.    Being that the plant grows in Asia presents a conundrum, in that you can’t obtain it anywhere else.  ??

What I have is a brand called Kratom Infusion.   The two varieties I have are Bumblebee MaengDa, from Vietnam, and the other is Malay MaengDa.

Also, from:

What is the Correct Kratom Dosage?
Calculating the ideal kratom dosage for your condition can be difficult, but it is important to carefully consider. Dosage guides vary based on tolerance, strain type and concentration of kratom alkaloids in the leaf.

The information below assumes you are buying good quality kratom from a reputable source and that you are taking the kratom on an empty stomach. Only ever buy kratom from trusted vendors.

How Many Grams or Teaspoons of Kratom to Take?
To calculate your dosage, compare the strain you are using (or average, if not listed) with the effects you desire to get a base dose.

(5) Keith Kusa: Regarding your question about Kratom I’m sure you’ve already done the Google searches and found opinions ranging from “It can cure everything from Hangnail to Cancer” to “The only thing it’s good at is leaving the taste of s**t in your mouth!”

I have two good friends from my days in healthcare who are both integrated physicians; MD’s who have incorporated alternative therapies into their mainstream medical practices. Their opinions were remarkably similar.

First, it seems nobody can really agree about the definition of what Kratom is. There are many different manufacturers, and some simply claim the ingredients to be “natural herbal extracts.” Second, there have been no clinical studies or even peer-reviewed articles published about Kratom, so anything you read or hear about it is purely anecdotal. Third, it’s suspected that, just like many other “natural” remedies, there is a significant placebo effect where people report good results that are either attributable to other things they are taking (people who like herbal remedies tend to take multiple forms), or simply to their belief that they feel better after taking it.

Finally, and most concerning is that there may be something in this remedy that has addictive properties. Because no formal studies have been done, there’s no way to know what that might be, but some people have reported withdrawal symptoms such as sleeplessness and digestive issues after stopping taking even relatively small doses.

Both physicians advised keeping your money in your wallet until more work has been done to truly establish the safety and efficacy of Kratom.

Hope that helps.

(6) Janna Gower: Here is one article. On balance I think Mercola is one of the better sources of health reporting. He is definitely alternative.

Green is another excellent source of information on natural pain relief options. I have not noticed anything there on kratom, but it’s easy to search.

(7) David Brown: I have been to the Kava Bar numerous times. I have found the owners to be very knowledgeable…I would ask for someone who is a manager or owner to get the information you seek. I tried Kratom once…I ordered just as you would any drink at a bar or fountain. I experienced no ill side effects.

Also, these people sell Kratom in their store. They are going to have the most experience regarding it. 

(8) Evelyn Blau: I googled this product and don’t like what I’ve learned. Used as a wannabe opioid. I would be VERY careful about using this without thorough investigation.

(9) Sylvia Kearns: To answer your question- -very dangerous drug. I️ researched after a post on another site. It’s . not for people with a history of addiction. Can cause relapse. Best of luck with your situation. Many other better choices out there.

(10) Charles Edwards: Works great for pain! Too much of anything is bad. I know kratom has worked for pain without addiction.

(11) Stacey Woody: Research is showing that one 200 milligrams of Advil taken with 500 milligrams of Tylenol every 6 hours is as effective as taking opioids.

(12) Glynn Lookabill: FDA warns on use of kratom to treat opioid addiction amid links to 36 deaths

(13) Lynn Bregman Blass: I tried it twice in a powder form chocolate drink. It relaxed me for sure. I took it more for sleep issues. I have packets left that I’m not going to use, you are welcome to have them and then I can tell you the source.

(14) David Debs Make sure no warning about dehydration. (Almost all meds have this in the small print somewhere as side effect!)

(15) Melissa ML Collins-Arnder: Chronic pain warrior here: Blaine , I have thought about trying this but am a little concerned. I may get up the nerve to soon.

(16) Anita Manders: CBD. I think better non-addictive. … Seems that the higher mg. good when taken for longer term.

(17) Jack Bowen: Caution!

(18)  Shawna Owens Shook: Video on kratom. Warning language, but very insightful. I love this guy.

(19) Tasha Pepi Sullivan: I’ve tried it with good results. It’s not the tastiest thing, though. … I know someone who takes it for pain and someone who takes it when anxious. The Kava Bar In west Ashe has some, I believe. … Most people say it’s like any pain killer in the way you would want to be safe. Don’t take too much, too often. I don’t know that it becomes addictive, but be cautious–like with anything?

(20) I just came across the following that I thought y’all would like to see:

Government falsifies warning against kratom


Section 12A, NC events

(1) Winter Wonderland: Kat Williams and the Richard Shulman Trio

Wednesday, Dec. 20, at 8:30 PM – 11 PM
Isis Music Hall
743 Haywood Rd, Asheville
Tickets Available:

The inimitable Kat Williams singing songs of the season in R&B, Jazz and Sacred styles, accompanied by the Richard Shulman Trio – songs from the Sublime to the Hilarious! Shannon Hoover on bass and Jeff Rudolph on drums.

Limited Tables Available with a Dinner Reservation All Other Seating is First Come First Serve

General Admission : Please Call Venue for Dinner (Table) Reservations: (828) 575-2737

$20 Advance / $20 Day of Show

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(2) Vegan Fudgecake Sundae Night
Thursday, December 21 from 3-9 p.m.
The Hop Ice Creamery
167 Haywood Rd, Asheville, NC

All Vegan Ice Cream! Every third Thursday of the month we are opening up the doors of The Hop Ice Creamery to provide a night of vegan delight. There will be 8 total flavors made with any of the following housemade milk bases – cashew, hemp, sunflower, coconut, banana creme and rice.

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Section 12B, PA/NJ event

(1) “It’s a Fruitcake”, the concoction of Tom Orr and Meagan Hill, host and co-host of the former Bucks County Cabaret, is back again by request. It’s chock-full of merry musical moments and crazy yuletide parodies that will stick to the roof of your mouth. Tom and Meagan have performed together and separately as cabaret artists, in addition to their careers in theatre, radio, television, and film, from Philadelphia to New York & Atlantic City. Not your typical Christmas show. This stocking is filled with surprises! With the maestro, Joe Flanagan on the piano and Johnny Orr on the bass.

The RRazz Room New Hope at the Clarion Hotel
6426 Lower York Road, New Hope, PA
Tickets Available:

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