By Denny Dyroff, Staff Writer, The Times
Even long-time circus fans who have attended many, many circus performances have still probably never seen anything like Cirque Zuma Zuma. The show is frequently described as an African-style Cirque du Soleil.
Area fans will have the opportunity to catch a live show by the unique entertainment act when WCU Live! presents Cirque Zuma Zuma on February 17 at Emilie K. Asplundh Concert Hall (700 South High Street, West Chester, http://www.wcupa.edu/oca/wcuLive)
African Acrobats International, Inc. has established a circus that taps into the spirit of Africa – a continent that is the cradle of all cultures and the ultimate source for all music, dance and ritual – a land that teems with mysticism, magic and excitement.
The show will include performances of all different types of African culture, including South African female vocalist, Limbo Dance and the Africa Africa Lion Dance, percussionists from Zimbabwe, Ethiopian foot table juggling and female dancers from Africa.
Other featured acts will be South African gumboot dancers, outrageous pole acts, Zuma Zuma Acrobats, handstand balance act from Tanzania, Gabonese Tumblers, contortionists from Ethiopia, and comedy and juggling acts.
Video link for Cirque Zuma Zuma — https://youtu.be/YjZl93smnrQ.
The show at Asplundh Hall will start at 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices are — Orchestra: adults, $20; seniors and students, $15; Balcony: adults, $17; seniors and students, $13.
The remaining shows on the Spring 2017 schedule of WCU Live! are Committed (February 25, 7:30 p.m.), The Divine Hand Ensemble (March 3, 7:30 p.m.), Keyboard Conversations® with Jeffrey Siegel (March 8, 7:30 p.m.), Caladh Nua (March 11, 7:30 p.m.), Missoula Children’s Theatre presents Treasure Island (March 18, 3 and 5:30 p.m.), Hypnotic Brass Ensemble (March 31, 7:30 p.m.), Tamagawa University Taiko Drumming & Dance Troupe (April 10, 7:30 p.m.), and The Stunt Dog Experience (May 5, 7:30 p.m.).
If you have kids and you’re looking for different ways to help them deal with cabin fever, there are several good options.
The Hands-on House Children’s Museum (721 Landis Valley Road, Lancaster, 717-569-5437, http://www.handsonhouse.org) is hosting a special series called “STEAM Explorers.”
Curiosity, creativity, and discovery will take children (accompanied by an adult) on an educational adventure in The Clubhouse, where learning and fun go hand-in-hand.
Guests will be able to explore “STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math.” These programs are designed for families with children ages 3-5 years old accompanied by an adult. One adult is required for every two children attending. Free with regular admission to Hands-on House.
On February 17, there will be a special program called “Seuss Steam Challenge.” The event’s description states – “What goes up must come down and no one knows that better than the Cat in the Hat — join us for a Dr. Seuss STEAM Building challenge.”
The event is free with regular admission to Hands-on House and no pre-registration required. Admission to the museum is $9.50 for adults and children.
In other museum activity geared for youngsters, the Garden State Discovery Museum: (2040 Springdale Road, Cherry Hill, New Jersey, 856-424-1233, www.discoverymuseum.com) is presenting a special program called “Passport to Discovery” on selected weekends now through the end of March.
This weekend, the theme will Be “Ireland” while “Darwin Day” will be the theme for February 25 and 26.
Admission to the museum is $13.95 for adults and children (12 months and over) and $12.95 for seniors. Children visiting the museum must be accompanied by an adult 18 or older.
The Delaware Children’s Museum (550 Justison Street, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-654-230, delawarechildrensmuseum.org) is staying open late on February 17 to host a special event – the “DCM Children’s Scavenger Hunt.”
Young participants can use their sharp eyes to search for hidden items located throughout the museum. Kids can pick up an instruction sheet at the front desk when they arrive and then set off to see if they can locate all 10 items during their visit.
The challenging and fun scavenger hunt will run from 5-8 p.m. and is included in museum admission.
Tickets to visit the Delaware Children’s Museum are $8.75 for general admission. Museum hours on Fridays will be 10 a.m.-8 p.m. with admission starting at just $5 per person after 5 p.m.
Linvilla Orchards’ (137 West Knowlton Road, Media, 610-876-7116, www.linvilla.com) “Fore! The Planet” is a highly interactive and playful museum exhibit created by the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. This exhibition pairs important environmental issues with the fun of miniature golf.
It features 18 unique educational holes on a variety of topics — butterfly metamorphosis, a tropical rainforest, evolution, dinosaur extinction, food chains and more. Kids of all ages can enjoy playing miniature golf while learning about our environment on every hole.
Video for “Fore the Planet” — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpvV0OVrv5Y&list=UUcFK4FqIn0TGKhXt09cFrvQ.
The mini-course is open daily from 9 a.m. -5 p.m. Tickets are $6.95 (ages 11 and over) and $4.95 (ages 10 and under).
And, a trip to Linvilla Orchards is not complete without a visit with the site’s “Barnyard Friends.”
Linvilla’s “Barnyard Friends” family features white-tailed deer, friendly calves, ultra-cute goats, gentle horses, docile sheep and the orchard’s adorable pot-bellied pig.
The orchard’s bird collection includes chickens, geese, pheasants, quail, doves, ducks, peacocks and guineas. And, there is a very big and very impressive emu.
Another sure-fire way to keep kids entertained this weekend is a trip to the circus.
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Circus will present “Out of This World” from February 16-20 at the Wells Fargo Center (Broad Street below Pattison Avenue, Philadelphia, WellsFargoCenterPhilly.com).
The circus invites visitors to get ready to blast off on an intergalactic adventure for space-age family fun as the ultimate circus experience launches into the future in “Out Of This World.”
Audiences will take the helm to join the Circus Space Fleet on a heroic quest of good versus evil that will let imaginations run wild with unexpected surprises and thrills at every turn.
Through the lens of a magic telescope, “Out Of This World” transports audience members on an unforgettable journey as the circus Star Seeker battles to bring the most spectacular and talented performers back to Earth after years in outer space.
The lavish spectacle features gravity-defying acrobats, orbital aerialists, majestic animals, fearless daredevils and humorous clowns.
Video link for Ringling Bros. Circus — https://youtu.be/RJCI5ZXbmEo
Ringling’s “Out of This World” will run from February 16- 20 at the Wells Fargo Center. Ticket prices range from $15-$105.
There is another event in the same entertainment complex this weekend that is geared much more for adults than children.
On February 18, XFINITY Live! (1100 Pattison Avenue, Philadelphia, 267-443-6415, http://www.xfinitylive.com) will host its annual “Cupid’s Undie Run,” which is billed as “being where a little crazy meets a lot of charity!.”
Staged as a benefit to support the Children’s Tumor Foundation, last year “Cupid’s Undie Run” raised over $3.5 million in cities throughout the country.
The doors at XFINITY Live! open and the party starts at noon. There will be an “Awards Ceremony” at 1 p.m. followed by the “Cupid’s Undie run” at 2 p.m.
The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center (100 Station Avenue, Oaks, 484-754-3976, www.phillyexpocenter.com) is hosting Philly Home + Garden Show from February 17-19.
If you’re considering projects that deal with working on or around your house — doing repairs, renovations, improvements or expansions, you should visit this weekend’s informative event.
The popular annual show features a large number of exhibits representing the home renovation and decorating industry. Featured products and services include roofing, windows, flooring, decking, landscaping, spas, contractors, designers, water, swimming pools, doors, gutters security systems, cabinetry, entertainment systems, appliances, furniture, vacuums and more.
Six of the region’s top landscaping companies are coming together to help visitors escape the winter and start planning for spring. There will be more than 7,500 square feet of inspirational gardens showcasing new gardening techniques, ideas and must-have products for 2017. This year the garden area will include wine and beer tastings and live music.
Another popular area will be “Smart Home powered by XFINITY, built by Rudloff Custom Builders.” Show attendees can experience the next generation of at-home comfort in the all-new, custom-built Smart Home. This home will feature everything from innovative design concepts to the latest technology.
There will also be an open-market style area featuring vendors with antiques, home-made, finely crafted items and original art and a “Make-it, Take-it” area where homeowners can get their hands dirty with our new hands-on workshops. Visitors will learn from the experts, discover new DIY project tips and ideas plus walk-away with their own creation.
The show will feature live music performed by area favorite kategory 5 along with songsmith Tony Alosi. The list of other special guests includes Jeff Lewis from Bravo’s docu-series “Flipping Out,” Hilary Farr from “Love It or List It,” and former Eagles linebacker Garry Cobb.
Admission is $10 for adults and free for children (12 and under).
An all-you-can-eat Valentine’s Breakfast Buffet — complete with live musical performances — will be held on February 18 from 7-noon at Historic Joanna Furnace (Route 10, Morgantown, 610-286-0388, www.haycreek.org).
Visit to the historical site Saturday morning will be able to savor the delicious breakfast foods Joanna Furnace is known for, indulge in a chocolate-enhanced menu and learn about the history of Joanna Furnace. Many of the dishes served at the event will be reminiscent of the breakfasts served in the historic furnace homes.
The all-you-can-eat Valentine’s Breakfast Buffet will feature bacon, creamed chipped beef, eggs, fresh country sausage, ham, scrapple, pancakes, hash browns, toast, coffee, juice and fresh strawberries accompanied by a fabulous chocolate dip.
The “Lovers’ Day” ambiance will be enhanced by live music performed by Phyllis Hummel. The veteran musician from Berks County will play acoustical guitar and sing a variety of romantic ballads throughout the breakfast time.
Tickets for the breakfast are $9 for adults and $4.50 for children (ages 5-11). Reservations are not required for breakfast.
The Strasburg Rail Road (Route 741, Strasburg, 717-687-7522, www.strasburgrailroad.com) is running two special trains on February 18 – the “Long John Limited” at 11 a.m., noon and 1 p.m. and “Riding with the President” at 11 a.m., noon and 1 p.m.
Riders on the “Long John Limited” might get a break with this weekend’s forecast of mild weather.
According to the rail line’s website, “Passengers are invited to don their long johns and winter attire, brave the weather aboard our Open Air Car, and enjoy complimentary Long John donut and coffee as we kick off our 2017 season.”
Not to be confused with the long undergarment worn on cold days, Long Johns are rectangular, yeasted doughnuts that are either filled or unfilled and topped with a variety of icing flavors.
Strasburg Rail Road’s Long Johns will be provided by Achenbach’s Pastries Inc and available while supplies last to those customers purchasing a ticket for the Open Air car. They can pick up their Long John donut and coffee at the Station before boarding the Open Air Car.
On the “Ride with the President” trains, passengers will be able to ride with President Ulysses S. Grant on a historic experience unique to the Strasburg Rail Road. They will ride in a coach car alongside President Grant as he shares his integral involvement with America’s railroads.
Tickets for either train ride are $17 for adults, $10 for children (ages 2-11) and $2 for infants (under 2).
On February 17, it’s time for the “Party in the Park” at Main and Broad streets from 5-9 p.m.
Ice sculptures are available for viewing from dawn to dusk in the Lititz Springs Park and throughout downtown Lititz. The evening will also feature food, games and live entertainment. At the Pulse Dance Pavilion.
Saturday’s events will feature the Chili Cook-off, the Winter Wonderland Carnival and the Vendor Fair — all taking place at Warwick High School from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Activities include charities, rides, games, food, and various vendors.
Linden Hall participates in the Fire & Ice Festival in Lititz by presenting a “Fire & Ice” themed concert on February 18 at 4 p.m. in the Mary Dixon Chapel on the Linden Hall campus. The concert will be presented by the school’s music department and will feature choirs, solos, and duets of popular music.
Additionally, the historic Mary Dixon Chapel, built in 1833, will be open at 3:30 p.m. for self-guided tours to learn more about the history of this unique Lititz landmark.
On Sunday, the focus will be on the Dodgeball Tournament from 1-5 p.m. at Warwick High and the Community Movie Night with a screening of “The Lion King” at Linden Hall starting at 7 p.m.
Video link for Fire & Ice Festival — https://youtu.be/yYpkAaniO-Q.
If you’re in the mood to rock out a bit on Sunday afternoon, then you should make Bridgeport your destination.
“Ribstock 2017,” an all-day music event to benefit Little League and middle school music programs, will be held at Bridgeport Ribhouse (1049 Ford Street, Bridgeport, , 610-278-8066, http://ribhouse.net/).
The festivities kick off at 2 p.m. and will feature performances by some of the top local artists including The Hot Sauce Junkies, The Fight Back Home, Skitty Show, The Sofa Kings, That Band, Broken Brothers, Side Arm (featuring special guests Paul Hammond and Paul Sinclair from Get The Led Out and Brian Quinn from Candlebox), and IV Stone.
According to organizers, “Ribstock” will be even bigger than ever this year with a new tented area added to the parking lot where sandwiches will be served and added seating will be provided.
This popular event was created by the Bridgeport Ribhouse staff, Philadelphia musicians Kevin Burk, Brian Quinn and Paul Hammond, sound engineer Dave Anderson, and dmk Publicity owner Denise Kovalevich as a way to give back to the community.
A $10 entry fee is required for the event and specials will be offered throughout the day and evening.
The official marching order is Broomall String Band, Ferko String Band, Pennsport String Band, Greater Kensington String Band, Avalon String Band, Greater Overbrook String Band, Uptown String Band, Duffy String Band, Polish American String Band, South Philadelphia String Band, Woodland String Band, Durning String Band, Quaker City String Band, Fralinger String Band, Hegeman String Band, and Aqua String Band.
Following the parade, mummers and their fans will gather together to celebrate Mardi Gras at a street fair in downtown Manayunk.
The annual celebration will not only provide excitement for Manayunk but will generate exposure and raise money for one of the greatest and oldest traditions in Philadelphia — the Mummers.
This event offers a full day of family-friendly activities such as face painting and photo booths. Visitors will be able to meet the Mummers at their “Clubhouses” for the day and enjoy performances, photo-ops, and food and drink.
Longwood Gardens (Route 1, Kennett Square, 610-388-1000, www.longwoodgardens.org) is hosting its popular “Orchid Extravaganza” through March 27.
The celebration of the orchid species features thousands of orchid blooms along with a variety of displays and special exhibits throughout its four-acre conservatory. “Orchid Extravaganza” will also feature stunning displays of orchids in planting beds, containers and innovative exhibits.
Approximately 5,000 colorful orchids hang from baskets, create inspiring arrangements and adorn unique forms throughout “Orchid Extravaganza.” Two of the most interesting exhibits are an oncidium waterfall display and an orchid meadow.
Admission to Longwood Gardens is $23 for adults, $20 for seniors and $12 for students.
If you’re looking for a way to celebrate Black History month, you should consider visiting the Historic Odessa Foundation’s National Park Service Network to Freedom site and exhibit, “Freedom Seekers: the Odessa Story.”
With your guide at Historic Odessa (201 Main Street, Osdessa, Delaware, 302-378-4119, www.historicodessa.org), you can follow in the footsteps of Sam, a fugitive slave escaping bondage in Maryland, who sought refuge in 1845, at the National Historic Landmark Corbit-Sharp House.
Admission is free, however, since the site is closed during the months of January and February, reservations are required.
The Reading Terminal Market (5 North 12th Street, Philadelphia, www.readingterminalmarket.org) is celebrating Black History Month with a day-long event featuring cooking demonstrations, live performances and discussions.
The schedule of events is: 10 a.m., The Center for Urban Health information table; 10:30 a.m., performance by Demented Evolution; 11 a.m., Cooking Demonstration in City Kitchen with Jorrae Beard, COO and originator of the Lulu Bang Sauce; noon, Healthy Cooking Education/Talk from The Dorrance H. Hamilton Center for Culinary Enterprises; and 12:30 p.m., Weez the Peeples Music Outro.
The event, which features free admission, runs from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Additionally, throughout February, the National Constitution Center, the Annenberg Center, Independence National Historical Park and other sites in Old City will be presenting special activities to celebrate Black History Month.