Planet friendly festival
Hope is the word, the movement and the spirit that guides this weekend’s 15th annual HOPE Festival, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 25, at the University of Maine Student Fitness and Recreation Center. The free event, with a special emphasis on taking care of Earth, features music, dance, puppetry, juggling, theater, food, crafts, speakers and more. Featured speaker Eliot Coleman, former host of The Learning Channel show “Growing Naturally” and purveyor of the Four Season Farm in Harborside, will give a keynote address at 1 p.m. about living green. Renowned Maine folk singer David Mallett will perform at 2:30 p.m. His song, “The Garden Song,” has been recorded more than 150 times, with its timeless message about the simple joys of living on the land resounding since it was first written more than 30 years ago. Before the festival, a 5K Fun Run kicks off at 10 a.m., followed by an official festival launch featuring American Indian drumming and the HOPE Festival Singers. Zachary Field’s Amazing Juggling will take place at noon, improvisational theater with the Penobscot Theater is at 12:45 p.m., and Peregrine Puppets will perform at 1:15 p.m. More dance, theater, music and lectures will take place throughout the day. For a full schedule of events, visit http://peacectr.org/wp. The HOPE Festival is co-sponsored by the Peace & Justice Center of Eastern Maine, UM Peace & Reconciliation Studies Program, UM Women in the Curriculum, Women’s Studies Program and Maine Peace Action Committee.
Fans of the beloved National Public Radio program “This American Life” are in for a special treat tonight when host Ira Glass and a number of familiar contributors offer a live, real-time broadcast of the show, transmitted in hi-definition to theaters all over the country. At 8 p.m. Thursday at both The Grand in Ellsworth and the Strand Theatre in Rockland, “Life” will feature stories by Dan Savage, Starlee Kine and Mike Birbiglia. David Rakoff and Dave Hill will conduct a special investigation, a new cartoon from graphic novelist Chris Ware will be premiered, additional visuals will be provided by Arthur Jones, and there will be a very special appearance by Joss Whedon, creator of the TV programs “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Dollhouse.” Tickets at both venues are $20, available at the box office. For more information, visit www.thisamericanlife.org.