Arts Devo

Toasting a successful Chico Beer Week and looking forward to more local fun

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Something's brewing Chico Beer Week was fun, filled as it was with great new beers and time spent with fellow beer fans. But the most exciting thing of all was the palpable anticipation around town that Chico is on the verge of taking some final steps toward becoming a bona fide craft-beer town. In other words, in addition to all the new tap handles going in around town—at The Bear, Round Table Clubhouse, the new Burgers & Brew, and the soon-to-open Lost Dutchman Taproom (see “Bottom Line,” page 24)—we might be getting some new breweries in Chico very soon. British Bulldog Brewery, with its roster of mostly English-style brews (with a couple of Belgians and West Coast-style IPAs thrown in) is hoping to be in local shops and restaurants by early 2016. Zythos Brewing Co. is looking for a location and investors. And Arts DEVO has heard rumors of at least two more that are hoping to open in 2016.

I can hear some of you saying, “Chico's been a craft-beer town since 1980!” To that I say, “Of course it has!” Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. put Chico (not to mention all of craft beer) on the map and is the king of independent craft breweries. Which is all the more reason why Chico should have many more. Why should Redding and Reno and thousands of other cities have more breweries than the town that started it all? If Chico can add a few more destination breweries to the foundation that Sierra Nevada and our new kick-ass beer bars and shops—The Handle Bar, Winchester Goose, Spike's Bottle Shop, Burgers & Brew—have built, Chico will have arrived and our local economy will have the potential thrive. Chico is ready to imbibe and prosper.

TV for locals Things are continuing to take shape at, the new public-access TV station run by local arts advocate Debra Lucero and filmmaker Skyler Sabine, and one of the more fun-looking offerings in the production stage is a new show called That’s That. What's that? Well, as it says on the show's Facebook page: “it's kinda like a talk show, but with skits. I guess you're just going to have to see it.” The show's host is tall, dark and Jazz fan Jeff Anderson, a sweet dude-about-town who you've probably seen behind the register at Chico Natural Foods Co-op. I ran into the Utah transplant as he filmed some local bands at a recent basement show, and he told me that he'd already interviewed a local philosopher and that he wants to break things up with footage of local arts and music happenings. And for now, that is that.

Dont' call him John On the heels of the recent successful Broadway revival of Bernard Pomerance's play, the Blue Room Theatre is staging The Elephant Man. Martin Chavira is directing and Nick Anderson will star as John Merrick in the story based on the real life of the severely deformed British man (whose first name was actually Joseph) who spent his life as a “human curiosity” in a freak show and then as a medical curiosity in a London hospital. The Elephant Man opens tonight, Oct. 22, at 7:30 p.m., and shows Thursday-Saturdays through Nov. 7.