Despite some meaty roles in Forrest Gump and Apollo 13 (and an Academy Award nomination for the former), Highland Park native Gary Sinise is still a ways away from being immortalized at Grauman's (now Mann's) Chinese Theater in Hollywood. Until that happens he'll have to settle for leaving his cement handprints at the North Shore Walk of Fame at the North Shore Hilton in Skokie. Among the five others to be so honored this evening are tennis star Andrea Jaeger, who's from Lincolnshire, and astronaut James Lovell, who lives in Lake Forest. The 5:30 ceremony is free and open to the public at the hotel, 9599 N. Skokie in Skokie. Call 708-729-7333 for details.
Uptown's Beacon Street Gallery & Theatre has rounded up kids from a variety of neighborhood educational programs to participate in a big multimedia art show. What I Did on My Summer Vacation opens tonight with a free reception from 7 to 9 at the gallery, 4520 N. Beacon. Call 708-232-2728.
Its promoters say attending Mortal Kombat Live, an exhibition of "martial arts, gymnastics, special effects and illusion," will allow you to experience "the power of hope and the triumph of good." Funny, we thought it was just a crass attempt to piggyback on the popularity of the notoriously violent video game and the current hit movie of the same name. Tix are $9.50 to $17.50. Shows start at 8 tonight, 7:30 tomorrow, and noon on Sunday at the Rosemont Horizon, 6920 N. Mannheim in Rosemont. Call 559-1212 for tickets.
Reduce Abuse, a party tonight at the Ruiz Belvis Puerto Rican Cultural Center, benefits the center as well as the Mumia Abu-Jamal Legal Defense Fund. Deejays Jesse Delapena, Penis, and Chris and David will provide music. Two live bands--the Bag People and the Hemp Squad--are scheduled to appear, along with performance poet Monica Kendrick. It's from 8 to 2 at the center, 1632 N. Milwaukee. Admission is $5, $3 for those with low incomes. Call 235-3520 for more.
The 1980 film Times Square has never been taken seriously by critics--Leonard Maltin calls it a bomb in his movie guide--but the film has always had a certain cachet. New wavers of the time thrilled to its punk score, and the lesbian community liked its story of two boyless-and-not-noticeably-unhappy-about-it teenage girls (Trini Alvarado and Robin Johnson) on the loose in the Big Apple. It gets screened tonight at 8 and 10 at Kino-Eye Cinema at Chicago Filmmakers, 1543 W. Division. Admission is $6, $3 for members. Call 384-5533 for more info.
Performance artist Matthew Owens follows up his first successful pet-related open mike/ theater-in-the-round with the three-part series Bark K, which opens tonight at Randolph Street Gallery and continues for the next two Saturday nights. Tonight's "Animalia Fashions" will feature bedraped beasts of every description; next week at "Starry, Hairy, Furry Celebrities" some local personalities will share their animal anecdotes; the final installment, "Pet Psychics," explores the world of the pet paranormal. Shows start at 8 at the gallery, 756 N. Milwaukee, and pets are welcome at all three. Admission is $10. Call 666-7737.
A pair of media watchdogs, Chicago Media Watch and Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting, have put together a daylong look at the failures of the mass media. Moderated by Ken Davis, Media & Disinformation: Democracy in Crisis includes a session on government control of the press with Robert Parry, the journalist who broke the Iran-Contra story. It's $20, $10 for students, seniors, and the unemployed. Registration begins at 8 AM at DePaul's Schmitt Academic Center, 2323 N. Seminary, and the day ends around 5. Call 604-1910 for more.
A north-side unit of the ROTC--that's the Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps, a gay drill team--leads off the sixth annual AIDS Walk Chicago this morning. Walkers leave at 10:30 from Monroe Harbor, Monroe and Lake Shore Drive, head south to the Adler Planetarium, and return to the harbor. The pledges they collect benefit a smorgasbord of local AIDS agencies. For registration info call 935-9255.
The Insistent Subject: Photographing Time and Again looks at what happens when a photographer obsessively shoots the same scene or object. Curator Denise Miller-Clark, director of Columbia College's Museum of Contemporary Photography, has dipped into the museum's archives and private and local collections for this show, which includes Cindy Sherman's self-portraits, Alfred Stieglitz's portraits of Georgia O'Keeffe, Sally Mann's portraits of her children, and William Wegman's portraits of his weimaraners. It's up through October 28 in the museum, 600 S. Michigan. Hours are weekdays 10 to 5, Thursdays till 8, and Saturdays noon to 5. It's free. Call 663-5554 for details.
For his book History Through the Opera Glass, George Jellinek compared the events and characters in approximately 200 historically based operas to their real-life counterparts. The radio personality--whose long-running show The Vocal Scene is broadcast locally on WNIB--will talk about his book at 7 tonight at Borders Books & Music, 830 N. Michigan. It's free. Call 573-0564.
Probation Challenge, a 17-year-old criminal-rehabilitation program founded by Reverend Harold E. Bailey, holds a benefit gospel concert tonight featuring the legendary Albertina Walker. Doors open at 7 at Ambassadors for Christ Center, 7859 S. Ashland; the show starts at 7:30. Tickets are $10 and $50. Call 291-6670.
In the tradition of Wallace Stevens, who spent a lifetime toiling at the Hartford Accident and Insurance Company, three poets who live and make money in the real world make a sally into the rather unenlightened world of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange this afternoon to show that art can coexist with mammon. As part of the Poetry Society of America's Poetry in Public Places series, Andrea Hollander Budy, who runs a bed-and-breakfast in the Ozarks, life-insurance exec Ted Kooser, and adman Robert Philips will read their poems in the upper-lobby auditorium of the Merc, 30 S. Wacker, at noon. It's free. Call 648-5463 for details.
Anna Quindlen, who walked away from a shot at being the first woman to run the New York Times in order to concentrate on her family and her career as a novelist, is the keynote speaker at today's annual meeting of the Chicago Foundation for Women. The event begins with a free symposium at 8:45 AM in the grand ballroom of the Hyatt Regency, 151 E. Wacker. The luncheon featuring Quindlen's talk starts at noon and costs $50. Call 266-1176 for reservations.
Tonight at Live Bait Theatre three pairs of Chicago artists discuss the pros and cons of combining the personal and the professional. Pulled in Two Directions features father-daughter theater team Susan and Mike Nussbaum, artists and domestic partners Ed Hinkley and Laurie Shaman, and playwright-performance artists Bryn and Jenny Magnus, who are brother and sister. It costs $3 and starts at 7. The theater is at 3914 N. Clark. Call 871-1212 for the suggested reservations.
Garry Marshall made a mint creating such dopey 70s sitcoms as Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley, and Mork and Mindy. Later he made some bad movies--Pretty Woman and Beaches among them--and became a memorable character actor (Lost in America, Soapdish). He talks about his new book Wake Me When It's Funny, which purports to impart his trade secrets for showbiz success, tonight at 7 at Borders Books & Music, 830 N. Michigan. It's free. Call 573-0564 for more.
Aaron Freeman, creator of the theatrical farces Do the White Thing and Council Wars and host of WBEZ's Metropolis program, makes an infrequent live appearance tonight at the Northside Cafe. The show, featuring improv and musical parody, starts at 7:30 at the restaurant, 1635 N. Damen. Tickets are $12. Call 384-3555 for details.