Weekend picks: Improv hosts Maz Jobrani
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Persian, like the cat
Comedian Maz Jobrani ("Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!" "The Axis of Evil Comedy Tour") puts his spin on life in the U.S. as an Iranian-American at the Improv Comedy Showcase and Restaurant, 5 Woodfield Road, Schaumburg. $27 plus a two menu-item purchase. (847) 240-2001 or improv.com. 8 and 10:15 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8; 7 and 9:15 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9; and 7 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Need ideas on remodeling or sprucing up your home? Then don't miss The Old Home New House Home Show, which returns this weekend at Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 E. Main St., St. Charles. $7; $4 seniors; kids and teenagers younger than 18 admitted free. (630) 515-1160 or pheasantrun.com or kennedyproductions.com. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Irish singer Aidan O'Toole headlines at Ballydoyle Irish Pub and Restaurant 5157 Main St., Downers Grove. Free. (630) 969-0600 or ballydoylepub.com. 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8
Legendary folk singer and songwriter Judy Collins, known for such hits as "Send in the Clowns" and "Both Sides, Now" headlines two concerts at Evanston SPACE, 1245 Chicago Ave., Evanston. Tickets cost $40-$85. Visit evanstonspace.com. 7 and 9:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8
'Winter Classics' concert
The FullScore Chamber Orchestra presents its "Winter Classics" concert at St. Paul the Apostle Church at 6401 Gages Lake Road, Gurnee. The concert is open to the public. Admission is $10. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8
The rock bands Certain Daze, GPS, She Loves Seven and Thallium headline Penny Road Pub, 545 Penny Road, Barrington, on Friday. Admission is $8. (847) 428-0562 or pennyroadpub.com. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8
See big trucks crunch smaller vehicles this weekend when Monster Jam returns to the Allstate Arena, 6920 N. Mannheim Road, Rosemont. $21-$57.50; $10 opening night. (800) 745-3000 or monsterjam.com. 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8, and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 9-10
The Security Project, a group consisting of former members of Peter Gabriel's band and King Crimson, will stop at the Arcada Theater, 105 E. Main St., St. Charles. The band features Jerry Marotta, Josh Gleason and Larry Fast, all former Gabriel backers, as well as Trey Gunn of King Crimson. They'll be exploring many of the songs from Gabriel's adventurous 1982 record "Security," which included the hit "Shock the Monkey." The band will also perform other material, including other Gabriel songs. Tickets start at $29. Go to oshows.com. 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8
Citadel Theatre Company presents "God of Carnage," Yasmina Reza's deliciously bitter comedy of bad manners. Wayne Mell directs Citadel's revival of the dark comedy about a playground altercation between two boys that sparks a war between their upper-middle class, middle-aged parents who indulge in behavior so childish and nasty it would likely make their children cringe. See it at 300 S. Waukegan Road, Lake Forest. $32.50, $37.50. (847) 735-8554 or citadeltheatre.org. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 8-9, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Chain O' Lakes Fishing Derby
Bring the family to enjoy the good old-fashioned winter fun at the 53rd Annual Chain O' Lakes Fishing Derby and Winter Festival at the Thirsty Turtle on Channel Lake, 42273 N Woodbine Ave., Antioch. Come watch the fishermen register their catch of the hour hoping to win a prize for the smallest or the largest fish. Fish judging and food will be inside the tent. There will be raffles and games for kids and adults. Weather permitting. (847) 395-6422 or mynicc.org. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Walk the grounds and search for finches and other winter birds at the Bird Walk at Cantigny Park, 1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton. Participants should meet in the visitor's center. Free admission. (630) 668-5161 or cantigny.org. 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 9
All about autos
See the latest models and concept cars when the Chicago Auto Show revs things up for its 105th edition starting Saturday at McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. $12; $6 admission for seniors ages 62 and older and for kids ages 7 to 12. chicagoautoshow.com. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, through Sunday, Feb. 17, and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18
'Ice Age: Continental Drift'
See a screening of the 2012 family film "Ice Age: Continental Drift" at the Tivoli Theatre, 5201 Highland Ave., Downers Grove. Admission to the PG-rated film is $4 per person. Proceeds will benefit Noah's Hope, a local charity that assists families with children who are battling the LINCL-Batten disease. Visit classiccinemas.com. 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 9
Celebrate the Chinese New Year
Ring in the Chinese New Year at the Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park Ave., Chicago, by joining Dragon Dancers in a procession celebrating the Year of the Snake. The event features Chinese music and activities, as well as a self-guided scavenger hunt highlighting conservatory plants signifying good fortune, Chinese traditions and this year's Zodiac symbol, the snake. (312) 746-5100 or garfield-conservatory.org. Free. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9
'On the Road to Glory'
Learn about the life of NASCAR legend and Elmhurst native Fred Lorenzen, known as "Fearless Freddie," at the "On the Road to Glory: Fred Lorenzen" exhibit at the Elmhurst Historical Museum, 120 E. Park Ave., Elmhurst. The exhibit features photos, artifacts and car-racing footage. Exhibit runs through Sunday, May 19. Admission is free. (630) 833-1457 or elmhursthistory.org. 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 9-10
The art of orchid-growing
Orchid lovers are invited to get ready for spring and learn more about the basic techniques of caring for and cultivating orchids at the Orchids for Beginners program at the Heinz Brothers Greenhouse Garden Center, 2010 E. Main St., St. Charles. Admission is $5. Participants can register at (630) 584-0473 or can just come to the event. 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9
The Elgin Choral Union and Heartland Voices join with the Elgin Symphony Orchestra for the concert "Choral Fantasy," which features pianist Alexander Schimpf and conductor Donato Cabrera performing music of Brahms, Beethoven and Schubert. Performances are this weekend at the Hemmens Cultural Center, 45 Symphony Way, Elgin. (847) 931-5900 or hemmens.org. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
AM Taxi at Subterranean
Suburban pop-punk band AM Taxi will perform Saturday at Subterranean, 2011 W. North Ave., Chicago. AM Taxi includes Adam Krier and Jason Schultejann, both former members of DuPage County band Lucky Boys Confusion. The band is making a name for itself with a driving sound and energetic stage presence. The Kickback, Chasing Mars and Dan Wade are also on the bill. $12. Go to subt.net. 9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9
Music from 'Middle Earth'
The Marion Consort choral ensemble performs a blend of music from the Medieval era, featuring music from and inspired by "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of The Rings" films at the Palatine Public Library, 700 N. North Court, Palatine. To register, call (847) 359-7267 or visit palatinelibrary.org. Free. 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Big Band Dance
Dance all afternoon to the sounds of the big bands from the '40s and '50s at the Big Band Dance at the Centre at North Park, 10040 Addison, Franklin Park. The event features ballroom dancing, waltzing, cha-cha, rumba and more. Mixers are featured, allowing everyone a chance to dance. $10 per person. (847) 590-1947 or fpparks.org. 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Bill's big band
Bill O'Connell's Chicago Skyliners band headlines an evening of big band music at FitzGerald's nightclub at 6615 Roosevelt Road, Berwyn. Admission is $5-$10. Call (708) 788-2118, or visit fitzgeraldsnighclub.com. 6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
Get in the mood for Mardi Gras celebrations by catching the rock and bluesy band Creole Stomp Sunday at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, 111 W. Campbell St., Arlington Heights. (847) 577-2121 or metropolisarts.com. 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10
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