If there’s one thing binding this week’s Fresh Starts together, it is imagination and exceptional creativity. Maybe you’re the kind of “end user” who wants an insider’s understanding of the technology and innovations that alternately abet and upset. Or perhaps you’re wondering how to combat the human toll from a devastating virus. Want to lessen your own toll on the planet, but have no idea where to start? We’ve got that, too. Even if all you want to do is “blow the winter stink off” with some hot jazz stylings, Cleveland’s got your dance card covered.
Hack the Planet!
“Hacking the subconscious mind,” is a social engineering catchphrase describing peoples’ vulnerability to subliminal, external influence. We don’t pretend to know all of the ins and outs of Dale Carnegie-esque Jedi mind tricks, but we all know something about computers and the similarly-attuned missions of their hackers. The weekend-long Notacon Computer Hacker Convention delves into that shadowy world, pairing creativity and community with technology and counterculture starts Friday, April 16 at the Wyndham Cleveland at Playhouse Square. The largest of its kind in the Midwest, Notacon spends equal time covering tech innovations, nerdcore hacker culture and “black hat” system cracking. It’s a spellbinding, Trojan horse of a learning experience, aimed at all levels of interest and experience. Not sure it’s for you? Check out their Freeview on Thursday, April 15 at 7 pm and score a handful of rapid fire presentations previewing Notacon’s topics and talkers.
Beyond Haring and Mapplethorpe
Launched by the Cleveland Institute of Art seven years ago, the ArtCares partnership between the CIA, the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland, and MOCA Cleveland has been simply outstanding. Back in 2003, CIA student Tony Bowden wondered aloud what he could do to help conquer HIV/AIDS and bring about awareness through art. Today, ArtCares trains focus on the toll that the human immunodeficiency virus has taken on the art world. Their stylish, annual reception and auction ArtCares 2010 hits Saigon Plaza in the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood this Saturday, April 17. The event features original, contemporary art works created and donated by local and regional artists – not to mention resplendent vino and nosh –with all proceeds benefiting the Taskforce and their fight against HIV/AIDS. Call 216-621-0766 ext. 270 for tix/info.
It’s Not That Easy Being Green…?
Apologies to Kermit the Frog for the pun, but as EarthFest celebrates the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day this week, being green has never been easier. The Earth Day Coalition proves it every year with their fest; the 2010 edition runs this Sunday, April 18 from 10 am to 5pm at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. More than 160 different environmental exhibits offer “climate change solutions” ranging from green home improvement and local/organic food, to clean transportation and more. Live music and plenty of family fun rounds out the day; regular zoo admission scores access to everything that Ohio’s largest environmental education event offers. You’ll have fun and come away with a ton of ideas on lessening your carbon footprint. And that spring in your step? Better than ol’ Kermit’s. Just sayin’.
And All That Jazz… Literally
You’re enlightened, we know. Telling you the Tri-C JazzFest that starts Friday is worth experiencing is like preaching to the choir, right? This year’s lineup is particularly intriguing, with luminaries like Ramsey Lewis, Patty Austin, Charlie Haden, Brenda Russell, Cleveland’s own Joe Lovano, the Shaw High Marching Band and an Allen Theatre concert presentation by The Roots making this year’s A-list. Now really, who couldn’t use a little bit o’ ?uestlove’s drumming? It’s like butter. It makes everything bettah.