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posted: 1/28/2014 5:30 AM

Best bets: Bullriders test their mettle at Sears Centre

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  • The Professional Championship Bullriders World Tour Finale VIII comes to the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 31 and Feb. 1.

      The Professional Championship Bullriders World Tour Finale VIII comes to the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 31 and Feb. 1.
    Courtesy of Sears Centre Arena

  • The Festival of Asia returns to Benedictine University in Lisle.

      The Festival of Asia returns to Benedictine University in Lisle.
    Daily Herald file photo by Bev Horne/bhorne@dailyh

  • Comedian Sonya White headlines at Zanies in St. Charles.

      Comedian Sonya White headlines at Zanies in St. Charles.

  • Opera baritone Nathan Gunn stars in a new production of Rossini's comedy "The Barber of Seville" at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

      Opera baritone Nathan Gunn stars in a new production of Rossini's comedy "The Barber of Seville" at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

  • Chef Walter Staib, left, will appear at the Woodstock Opera House on Thursday, March 20.

      Chef Walter Staib, left, will appear at the Woodstock Opera House on Thursday, March 20.
    Associated Press

 
 

Top pick

Bucking trend
See daring men and women brave bucking bulls, participate in barrel racing and more at the Professional Championship Bullriders World Tour Finale VIII, which also features country star Tracy Lawrence, this weekend at the Sears Centre Arena, 5333 Prairie Stone Parkway, Hoffman Estates. $18-$53; $10 parking. (888) 732-7784 or searscentre.com. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Jan. 31 and Feb. 1

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This weekend

Year of the Horse
Welcome the upcoming Lunar New Year with the Festival of Asia 2014 featuring table-tennis tournaments, cooking contests, Asian performances and a buffet meal at Benedictine University's Krasa Center, 5700 College Road, Lisle. $20. (630) 829-6000 or ben.edu. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31

Frozen fun
Bundle up for ice-sculpting displays, snowman contests, ice skating and more at an Inaugural Winter Carnival at Hawthorn Woods Community Park, Old McHenry and Quentin Roads, Hawthorn Woods. No admission charge. (847) 847-3531 or vhw.org. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31

Down-home humor
Catch up with comedian and Virginia native Sonya White (CMT's "Southern Fried Chicks," "Last Comic Standing") this weekend at Zanies at Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 E. Main St., St. Charles. $23 plus a two menu-item purchase. (630) 584-6342 or zanies.com. 8 and 9:45 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31, and 7:30 and 9:45 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 1

Ella tribute
Jazz singer Kim Nazarian performs withThe Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra for "A Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald" at College of Lake County's Lumber Center for the Performing Arts, 19351 W. Washington St., Grayslake. $30-$38; $29-$37 seniors; $14-$15 kids and students. (847) 543-2300 or clcillinois.edu/tickets. 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31

Instant musical
Help out in the creation of "Broadway's Next H!T Musical" with this interactive and improvised musical comedy show on Saturday at Elgin Community College's Blizzard Theatre, 1700 Spartan Drive, Elgin. $32. (847) 622-0300 or elgin.edu/arts. 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 1

Figaro! Figaro! Figaro!
Baritone Nathan Gunn returns to star in the Lyric Opera of Chicago's new production of Rossini's comedy"The Barber of Seville" directed by Tony Award-winner Rob Ashford starting Saturday at the Civic Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive, Chicago. Sung in Italian with projected English translations. $20-$284. (312) 332-2244 or lyricopera.org. 7:30 p.m. Feb. 1, 3, 15, 18, 21, 25; 2 p.m. matinees Feb. 6, 9, 12 and 28

Plan ahead

Dainty & daring
Television cartoon royalty and raiders of the sea combine for the special show "Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure" starting on Friday, March 14, at the Rosemont Theatre, 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. $15-$75. (800) 745-3000 or rosemont.com. 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 14; 11 a.m., 2 and 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, March 15-16

He's cooking
Chef Walter Staib, best known for his TV series "A Taste of History," will appear as part of the Creative Living Series on Thursday, March 20, at the Woodstock Opera House, 121 Van Buren St., Woodstock. $24. (815) 338-5300 or woodstockoperahouse.com. 10 a.m. Thursday, March 20

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