Midwest travel: SOAR with the Eagles weekends in Minnesota
Silence is golden
Enjoy a silent film, seated in Chicago's only remaining silent film studio, the historical Essanay Studios. The classic film "Sherlock Holmes: Back at Home," which turns 100 this year, will be screened where it was filmed and accompanied by local musicians. A local historian and author launches the evening with a short discussion about the film and studio. Dress in you Sherlockian best and enjoy a cash bar of specialty Sherlock-themed cocktails, too. 7 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday, March 12, at Essanay Studios, 1345 W. Argyle St., Chicago. $25; buy tickets at tinyurl.com/jxhqe54.
It's not brain surgery
Get a behind-the-scenes look at some of the most interesting and gruesome artifacts at the International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago. Museum staff eagerly open the vaults during "Surgical Curiosities: Rare Books and Selections from the Permanent Collection." See archival materials, rare texts, human remains and some of surgery's grimmest instruments. The first event in the three-part series focuses on trephining, the surgical process of drilling, scraping or cutting a hole into the skull. A BYOB reception follows. Subsequent tours cover Medical Illustration/Anatomy (April 8) and Gynecology (May 13). 6 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 11, April 8 and May 13, at the International Museum of Surgical Science, 1524 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. General admission is $25 and tickets are available at tinyurl.com/zt7cuba.
Apollo Chorus, Chicago's oldest musical organization, celebrates the power of live musical performance through choral masterworks. Experience Mendelssohn's "Elijah" in the legendary Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago performed in collaboration with the Elmhurst Symphony Orchestra and featuring baritone Gerard Sundberg in the title role. There's an optional free preconcert talk by Music Director Stephen Alltop, too. Mendelssohn's "Elijah," with lyricism and orchestral color, is the biblical journey of the prophet Elijah, which culminates in his dramatic ascension to heaven on a fiery chariot. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 12, in the Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago, 5850 S. Woodlawn Ave., Chicago. Individual tickets cost $30-$60. (312) 427-5620 or apollochorus.org.
Fondue for two
The Huron House, a luxury bed and breakfast in Oscoda, Michigan, is offering an authentic Michigan experience with a fun twist in the privacy of your room, most of which are lakefront and have a Jacuzzi or an outdoor hot tub. The fondue package includes a two-night stay at the Huron House Bed and Breakfast; fondue for two using locally sourced chocolate from a family business in East Tawas and fruits from local farmers' markets; complimentary next-day breakfast-in-bed, parking and Wi-Fi. The special runs through March at the Huron House Bed and Breakfast in Oscoda, Michigan. Packages start at $410 plus taxes, rates vary by room selection and are subject to availability. (989) 739-9255 or huronhouse.com.
Time for you to fly
It's March, so expect maple syrup and eagle-watching activities galore. The best place to learn about raptors has to be the National Eagle Center and its SOAR with the Eagles festival. The Wabasha, Minnesota, center, located on the banks of the Mississippi River, offers programming all month that celebrates the spring migration of bald eagles with excellent opportunities to see the migrating birds. Each weekend SOAR features nationally acclaimed flying bird shows, live animals and educational programs. See how North American bald and golden eagles compare to other eagles from around the world; learn more about the endangered Whooping Crane; experience a mobile planetarium to explore the wonders of the night sky; and Wings to Soar guarantees a hair-raising experience with birds flying right over the audience. Saturday and Sunday, March 5-6, 12-13 and 19-20, and Saturday, March 26, at The National Eagle Center, 50 Pembroke Ave., Wabasha, Minnesota (60 minutes west of Eau Claire, Wisconsin). $8 adults; $7 seniors (62 and older); $6 students 4-17; free for kids 3 and younger and NEC members. (877) 332-4537 or nationaleaglecenter.org/soar-with-the-eagles/.
Get ready to get paddled
Canoecopia is the largest paddlesports consumer event on the planet packed with kayaks, canoes, stand-up paddleboards, outdoor equipment and clothing plus more than 110 seminars and clinics about fun on the water. Presentations include paddle board yoga; kayaking kids; wellness for paddlers; and many about various places around the country to visit for paddle sports. 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, March 11; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, March 12; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, March 13, at the Alliant Energy Center, Madison, Wisconsin. A day pass costs $15 and a weekend pass is $25. Free for ages 17 and younger. canoecopia.com.