The Chicago Architecture Foundation's annual season of Chicago River cruises begins today. The 90-minute trips--taken by more than 40,000 people each year--are accompanied by lectures given by CAF docents and include looks at and info about the Wrigley Building, Mies's IBM Building, the Civic Opera House, and the NBC Tower. There's a noon cruise Monday through Saturday through May, with an additional departure at 2 on Saturday. On Sunday tours leave at 9:30 and 3. In June, July, and August the schedule expands to three tours daily. Tickets ($15) are available by phone (902-1500) or at the CAF office, 224 S. Michigan. The cruises leave from the south side of the river at Michigan and Lower Wacker. Call 922-3432 for more.
The work of the School of the Art Institute's fashion design students gets shown off at 6:30 tonight at a fashion show accompanied by a cocktail reception. Clothes, accessories, knitwear, and even shoes will be displayed in the Chicago Rooms of the Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington. Tickets are $50, $25 for students. The exhibit stays up through May 23; hours are 10 to 7 weekdays, till 6 Friday, 10 to 5 Saturday, and noon to 5 Sunday. Admission is free. Call 899-5168 for info.
Hey--didja know that those crazy French think that turkeys go "gloo-gloo"? Of course it's patently obvious that the sound is "gobble gobble." And what about the Chinese--they think that buzzing bees go "boon-boon"! Those are just a few of the cultural conflicts unearthed by Reader contributor Hank De Zutter in his new book, Who Says a Dog Goes Bow-wow? De Zutter will be at the Children's Bookstore, 2465 N. Lincoln, to impart these and other gleanings at 10:30 today. It's free; call 248-2665 for details.
Director Julia Reichert, who garnered Academy Award nominations for her films Seeing Red and Union Maids, offers a new feature-documentary hybrid, Emma and Elvis, the story of a friendship between a child-of-the-60s filmmaker and a twentysomething radical video maker. The movie includes interviews with the likes of Tom Hayden, Angela Davis, and Greil Marcus. The film plays at 7 tonight at Facets Multimedia, 1517 W. Fullerton; Reichert herself will be there to answer questions afterward. It also screens at 5:30 and 7:30 tomorrow evening, and at 7 and 9 Monday through Thursday, May 13. Admission is $5, $3 for members. Call 281-4114 for more.
The last races of the ten-day Tour of Illinois bicycle meet start at 7:45 this morning. From then till 4:30, cyclists from all over the midwest will compete on a course around the Midway Plaisance, between 59th and 60th streets. It's free to go watch, and there's even a heat for members of the public to ride in. Today's event is sponsored by the University of Chicago's Velo Club; call 684-6553 for details.
On Mother's Day, what better thing to do than protest the Catholic Church's continuing discrimination against women? Like the similarly configured religious organization that perished in Waco two and a half weeks ago, the Catholic Church invests infallible power in one male leader, bases its structure on conveniently interpreted dicta from an ancient text, and has been known to get hostile when challenged by outsiders. Chicago Catholic Women are working to change things; the group plan to gather at 11 today at Holy Name Cathedral, 750 N. State, to call for a national boycott of churches until women can be ordained. Call 561-5668 for more.
The Barrett Sisters--the nationally known Chicago gospel group featured in the documentary Say Amen, Somebody--are playing a concert to benefit LaSalle Street Young Life, which provides tutoring, counseling, and recreation programs for kids at Cabrini-Green. The show's at 5 PM at the LaSalle Street Church, 1136 N. LaSalle. Tix are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Call 787-3917.
The story behind Silverlake Life: The View From Here is a sad one. The film's about two filmmakers, teachers and lovers Tom Joslin and Mark Massi, who are diagnosed as HIV positive. The documentary, directed by Joslin and a student, Peter Friedman, tracks the pair's last months together. "This painful but bracingly frank film," says Newsweek, "isn't only an invaluable document of the day-to-day ravages of AIDS, it's a testament to an extraordinary relationship, a love story in extremis." The film won the best-documentary award at the 1993 Sundance Festival. It shows tonight at 6 at the Film Center, Columbus at Jackson, and repeats Thursday at 6 and Saturday, May 22, at 4. Admission is $5, $3 for members. Call 443-3733 for details.
Tonight the Society of Midland Authors gives out its annual book and drama awards. A special guest: desegregation activist Rosa Parks, whose kids' book, Rosa Parks: My Story, is the society's winner for juvenile nonfiction. Other winners include Carol Anshaw's Aquamarine, for fiction; Maureen Seaton's poetry collection, The Sea Among the Cupboards; Bentley Gilbert's David Lloyd George, for biography; Hadley Irwin's The Original Freddie Ackerman, for juvenile fiction; and Christopher Cartmill's Light in Love, for drama. Local poet G.E. Murray speaks at the affair, in the Drake Hotel, 140 E. Walton; $37.50 gets you cocktails at 6, dinner at 7, with the awards and Murray's talk to follow. Call 337-1482.
Celebrated cabaret singer Andrea Marcovicci opens a five-show stand at the Park West tonight with a benefit for the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, the group that provides legal assistance to people with AIDS. Tix are $40 and $60 for the event, which begins at 8 at the club, 322 W. Armitage. The higher-priced ticket lets you rub elbows with a bunch of lawyers and Marcovicci herself after the show. Call 427-8990 for details.
If lecture topics like the history of magnetic tape, the playback of cylinder recordings, and the history of Chicago recording from jazz and blues to the CSO are all music to your ears, check out the annual meeting of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections, happening this week at the Bismarck Hotel, 171 W. Randolph. It's the 27th such affair for the association, which is "dedicated to the preservation and study of recordings in all fields of music and speech." Registration for the three-day session begins at 4 PM in the hotel's Green Room; there's an opening reception from 5:30 to 7 at the same place, where you can get a complete schedule and details. Cost is $30 a day, $80 for the whole shebang. You can call the CSO's Brenda Nelson-Strauss at 435-8129 for info.
Looking for a place to volunteer? The Evanston-based group BE-HIV (it's pronounced "beehive" and stands for "better existence with HIV") offers counseling, support groups, help with transportation and daily living, and companionship to people who are HIV positive, and it needs some new volunteers. They're holding a pair of volunteer training sessions this week: the first is tonight from 6 to 9 and the second Saturday from 8:30 to 5, both at the Saint Francis Hospital School of Nursing, 355 Ridge in Evanston. Call 708-475-2115 for details.
There's a two-stepping benefit tonight for Hull House, the still-vibrant social agency founded in 1889 by Jane Addams, at the Whiskey River C and W nightclub. Twenty bucks gets you drinks, appetizers, and two-stepping lessons. The event runs from 6 to 9 at the club, 1997 N. Clybourn. Call 906-8600 for more.
T. Coraghessan Boyle, "rococo prosemonger" (as he's been called by the Boston Globe) and author of four novels and three short-story collections, reads from his new book, The Road to Wellville, tonight at the Old Town Barbara's. Boyle's previous full-length works include World's End, East Is East, and Water Music. He hits the stage at 7:30 at the store, 1350 N. Wells. It's free; call 642-5044 for details.