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posted: 12/1/2012 6:00 AM

Weekend picks: It's a Cosby show at the Genesee

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  • Comedian Bill Cosby is set to return to the Genesee Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 1.

      Comedian Bill Cosby is set to return to the Genesee Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 1.
    Associated Press File Photo

  • Native American artist Patricia Gardner is one of the Midwestern artists displaying and selling crafts at the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian's Native Arts Holiday Bazaar.

      Native American artist Patricia Gardner is one of the Midwestern artists displaying and selling crafts at the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian's Native Arts Holiday Bazaar.
    Courtesy of the Mitchell Museum of the American In

  • Get an up-close look at some resident raptors and meet with Santa Claus at the "Talons and Claus" Open House on Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn.

      Get an up-close look at some resident raptors and meet with Santa Claus at the "Talons and Claus" Open House on Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn.
    Courtesy of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage

  • Dancers from Moscow Ballet's "Great Russian Nutcracker" come to the Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on Sunday, Dec. 2.

      Dancers from Moscow Ballet's "Great Russian Nutcracker" come to the Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on Sunday, Dec. 2.

  • Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli is set to headline the Allstate Arena in Rosemont on Sunday, Dec. 2.

      Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli is set to headline the Allstate Arena in Rosemont on Sunday, Dec. 2.

  • Alabama Shakes -- Heath Fogg, left, Zac Cockrell, Brittany Howard and Steve Johnson -- play the Chicago Theatre on Sunday, Dec. 2.

      Alabama Shakes -- Heath Fogg, left, Zac Cockrell, Brittany Howard and Steve Johnson -- play the Chicago Theatre on Sunday, Dec. 2.
    Associated Press File Photo

  • Video: Video: Suburban weekend

 
By Scott Morgan and Laura Stewart

A Cosby show
Groundbreaking comedy legend Bill Cosby ("I Spy," "The Cosby Show") returns to perform Saturday at the Genesee Theatre, 203 N. Genesee St., Waukegan. $39.50-$75. (847) 782-2366 or geneseetheatre.com. 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Continuous comedy
Call them crazy, but five actors from the local improv troupe K.C. Redheart will perform improvised comedy for 30 hours nonstop (with guests from other comedy troupes) to benefit children's literacy as part of The Playground Improv Marathon at the Playground Theater, 3209 N. Halsted St., Chicago. $5-$10 per hourlong show; $25 for a full 30-hour pass to benefit the Illinois Coalition of Reach Out and Read. (773) 871-3793 or the-playground.com. Runs through 11 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Native American art
The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian hosts a Native American Holiday Bazaar at the museum's Central Street building, 3009 Central St., Evanston. Native American artists from across the Midwest will display and sell their traditional, handmade works including drawings, beadwork, corn husk dolls, pottery, children's quilts and more. Admission to bazaar is $5 for adults (includes admission to the museum). Free for kids 12 and younger and for museum members. (847) 475-1030 or mitchellmuseum.org. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2

Highlighting hunger
Help raise funds for local food pantries and other meal programs by taking part in Empty Bowls at Oakton sponsored by the Ceramics Club at Oakton. Buy a ceramic bowl Saturday at Oakton Community College, 1600 E. Golf Road, Des Plaines. $14 (includes handcrafted bowl, soup and bread). (847) 635-1699 or oakton.edu. 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Claws and Claus
Visit with Santa Claus and get up-close views of some of Willowbrook Wildlife Center's raptor residents at the Talons and Claus Open House at the Willowbrook Wildlife Center, 525 S. Park Blvd., Glen Ellyn. Other options include crafts, refreshments and horse-drawn carriage rides (weather permitting). Free admission. Note: Guests can purchase a photo CD or a print photo of their visit with Santa for $10. Proceeds from the photos will aid the wildlife center's rehabilitation efforts. (630) 942-6200 or dupageforest.org. Noon to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Kwanzaa demo
Find out more about the weeklong African heritage celebration of Kwanzaa with a special Pre-Kwanzaa Demonstration and Marketplace at College of Lake County's Lakeshore Campus, 111 N. Genesee St., Waukegan. Free admission. (847) 543-2191 or jlc.clcillinois.edu. Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Nutcrackers of the week
This weekend sees the addition of two contrasting approaches to Tchaikovsky's classic Christmastime ballet, one seen on a national scale and one that's locally produced. On the local side, Schaumburg Dance Ensemble presents its take on "The Nutcracker" at the Prairie Center for the Arts, 201 Schaumburg Court, Schaumburg. $26; $18 students/seniors. (847) 895-3600 or prairiecenter.org. The touring Moscow Ballet brings its "Great Russian Nutcracker" to the Akoo Theatre at Rosemont, 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. $26-$85.50. (800) 745-3000 or rosemonttheatre.com. 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday through Dec. 9 in Schaumburg; 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2, in Rosemont

Candlelight at the Inn
Experience the tradition of winter visits with neighbors, as practiced by families in the 1800s, at the Candlelight at the Inn event at Garfield Farm Museum, on Garfield Road, off Route 38, Campton Hills. Hospitality, food, music and a bake sale are featured. Free; donations welcome. (630) 584-8485 or garfieldfarm.org. 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 1-2

Frosty Fest
Step into a world resembling an old-fashioned vignette with horse-drawn wagons, live reindeer, a grand tree lighting and Victorian carolers at the Frosty Fest celebration in downtown West Chicago. Free general admission. Note: The cookie-decorating activity cost a $1 donation, which will go to assist a local food pantry. Dress for the weather, as many activities are outdoors. (630) 293-2200, ext. 135, or westchicago.org. 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Celebrate the Season fest
A tree lighting, ice-carving demonstrations, carolers, reindeer and appearances by Santa and Mrs. Claus are all part of the Celebrate the Season Holiday Festival at Cantigny Park and First Division Museum, 1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton. Admission is free with paid $2 parking fee. Some activities require fees, including sleigh rides ($1 per person). (630) 668-5161 or cantigny.org. 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Lewis at Zanies
Veteran standup and "Curb Your Enthusiasm" regular Richard Lewis, who for decades has mined his own neuroses for comic gold and who Mel Brooks reportedly described as the "Franz Kafka of modern day comedy," headlines Rosemont's Zanies, 5437 Park Place, Rosemont, this weekend. The author of several books, including his 2000 memoir "The Other Great Depression," Lewis also appeared in the film "Vamps" released earlier this month. $30, plus a two item food or beverage minimum. (847) 813-0484 or zanies.com. 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Liza times 3
About Face Theatre celebrates the holiday season with the world premiere of "We Three Lizas," a musical by Scott Bradley (book and lyrics) and Alan Schmuckler (music and lyrics) about Conrad and Reggie, who wish for youth, wealth and beauty and wind up with Liza Minnelli bearing holiday gifts. Danielle Plisz plays Liza Then and Bradley plays Liza Now in the production, which includes a preshow "cocktail hour" featuring guest artists. See it at the Steppenwolf Garage, 1624 N. Halsted St., Chicago. $25. (312) 335-1650 or steppenwolf.org. Preview at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1; opens at 3 and 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2

Rolling Christmas
Get into the spirit of the season when the Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis performs contemporary arrangements of holiday classics with multimedia sound and lighting effects at the Akoo Theatre at Rosemont, 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. $28-$79. (800) 745-3000 or rosemonttheatre.com. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Holidays, '80s-style
Get into the holiday spirit by checking out the "Jingle Bell Rock" show this weekend at the Arcada Theatre, 105 E. Main St., St. Charles. The songs will be performed by 1980s hitmakers Eddie Money, John Cafferty and Edgar Winter. $35 to $89. Go to oshows.com. 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Sing it
Trey Songz brings his hip-hop/R&B blend to the Arie Crown Theater at McCormick Place, 2301 Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. Tickets cost $48-$103. (800) 745-3000. 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

Going solo
Ray LaMontagne brings his rock/acoustic/solo show to the Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State St., Chicago, this weekend. Tickets cost $49.50-$69.50. (312) 462-6300 or thechicagotheatre.com. 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1

'Once Upon a Christmas'
Lisle's "Once Upon a Christmas" celebration features holiday crafts, music, brick-oven baking, a blacksmith, model trains and Santa Claus at the museums at Lisle Station Park, 921 School Street, Lisle. Free. (630) 968-0499. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2

'They're Playing Our Song'
Liberty Town Productions presents "They're Playing Our Song," Marvin Hamlisch and Neil Simon's hit 1970s Broadway musical about two quirky songwriters who fall in love. The show takes place at Libertyville High School, 708 W. Park Ave., Libertyville. $10-$20. Visit libertytownproductions.com. 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2

Andrea Bocelli
Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli headlines with the World Festival Symphony and guest vocalist Katherine Jenkins at the Allstate Arena, 6920 N. Mannheim Road, Rosemont. The program features classical, pop and miscellaneous selections. $75-$350. Parking is $20 (cash only). (800) 745-3000 or allstatearena.com. 7:30 p.m.Sunday, Dec. 2

Shake it up
Band of Horses and Alabama Shakes bring their rock/roots/holiday show to the Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State St., Chicago. $50. (312) 462-6300 or thechicagotheatre.com. 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2

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