Midwest travel: True/False Film Fest fetes docs, music, art
Another film festival? Stop yawning because the 13th annual True/False Film Fest in downtown Columbia, Missouri, delivers: TIME magazine named it one of the top 50 cultural events to experience in 2014, IndieWire said it was "the most vital" film festival in America in 2015, and MovieMaker Magazine recently honored it as one of the "coolest" 25 film festivals on the planet. See groundbreaking documentaries from around the globe. In addition to 60 documentaries (including three of the five in the running for this year's Oscar), the fest offers a masquarade-themed jubilee with music, food and refreshments, 15 concerts and 40 different buskers and bands. Venues are in downtown Columbia and the University of Missouri campus, all within walking distance from one another. March 3-6 in downtown Columbia, Missouri. For tickets, locations and a schedule, see truefalse.org.
Don't be a blockhead
Block 37, a Chicago shopping, dining and entertainment center in the heart of the Loop, features a "tax free" shopping day on Leap Day, Monday, Feb. 29. Participating retailers offer a discount equivalent to the current Illinois sales tax (10.25 percent). In addition, Block 37 retailers showcase exclusive promotions throughout the day, such as extra discounts. Participating retailers include Anthropologie, Magnolia Bakery, Akira, Dakota Watch Company and Latinicity. Recent openings in Block 37 include Latinicity, AMC Dine-in Theatres, the Moto Shop, the Trendy Sparrow pop-up shop and more. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 29, at Block 37, 108 N. State St., Chicago. For participating retailers and other info, visit blockthirtyseven.com.
Let's go to bed
In celebration of "Van Gogh's Bedrooms" at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel presents a special package inviting art fans to lay their head to rest in a bedroom of their own. The hotel's Van Gogh Bedrooms Package includes: two nights' Deluxe Room accommodation; breakfast in bed for two; 50 percent reduced valet parking; two general admission tickets to the Art Institute of Chicago with access to the "Van Gogh's Bedrooms" exhibit; and a Van Gogh keepsake. Now through May 8 at the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, 12 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. Subject to availability at the time of booking; blackout dates apply. See rates for the day you want to stay at www.chicagoathletichotel.com/downtown-chicago-hotel-special/van-gogh-bedroom-series-package.
March is all about the green, and apparently, the brown as well if you stroll the Chicago Whiskey Walk. Think small food tastes, entertainment and excellent Irish whiskey at eight North Side Chicago bars -- Casey Moran's (the check-in spot at 3660 N. Clark St.), Sports Corner, Roadhouse 66, Deuce's & The Diamond Club, Stretch Bar & Grill, Dive Bar, Minibar and Clark St. Beach Bar -- all within walking distance of each other. Consider the all-day event as training for St. Patrick's Day. A portion of proceeds will benefit local nonprofit and charitable organizations. Noon to 10 p.m. Saturday, March 5. Tickets are available online only at $55 each. Get information at chicagowhiskeywalk.com.
Break it up
Who says only kids need a break when the chill lifts? Teachers, professors and nurses can treat themselves to The Galena Territory with "Grown Up Spring Break" at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa at a discount. Regardless of the day or length of stay, you'll enjoy the special room rate as long as you show teacher or nurse identification upon check-in. The resort is also offering special rates and packages to all spring break families throughout March and April. Get busy with winter sports if there's snow or get a jump on golf season if it's warm enough. There's a heated indoor pool, family games and activities like movie nights and make-your-own snack. March 1 through April 30 at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa in Galena, Illinois. Special $89 rate for teachers and nurses. Call for rates on family packages. (800) 892-2269 or eagleridge.com.
Celebrate your gal pals
Call your mother, sister and BFFs to meet in St. Joseph, Michigan, for Diva Days -- A Women's Weekend during which the Lake Michigan resort town's restaurants, stores and hotels celebrate the gals. Expect activities including tastings of regional wines and beers, special sales, dining discounts, workshops and demonstrations, cooking classes and antique treasures. There will be a fashion show on Friday night and an entertainment experience on Saturday. Many of the area's lodgings are within walking distance or a short, easy drive of activities. Friday through Sunday, March 11-13, in St. Joseph, Michigan. For a schedule, activity ticket information, lodging options and details about the weekend, see stjoetoday.com/all-events/details/diva-days-women-s-weekend-in-st-joseph.