Hudgens at Heartland, poker with Mel Daniels, and more

September 20, 2013
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—The Heartland Film Festival announced its lineup Thursday. The Oct. 17-26 festival opens with a screening of "Gimme Shelter" which, no, is not the Rolling Stones documentary concert. It's a drama about a pregnant teen, and star Vanessa Hudgens is expected to attend. She'll be receiving a Rising Star award at the Oct. 19 award ceremony (which I'll reserve judgment on until seeing the film, which also features Indianapolis native Brendan Fraser). The festival closer is "The Book Thief" with star Geoffrey Rush expected to be here. In between, look for 132 other films. Watch IBJ for my picks closer to festival time. (FYI: I served on the documentary jury this year and have some definite favorites.)

—Speaking of Heartand, founder Jeffrey Sparks is stepping down as the name above the title. Story here.

—Meanwhile, the spell-checker's nightmare, Krzysztof Urbanski, has renewed his contract with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchesra. The new deal will keep him at the podium through 2018. More here.

—A number of weeks back, I blogged about the Celebrity Poker Tournament I was invited to compete in at Indiana Grand Casino (See posts here and here). Rather than pick a charity to represent, I opted to blindly draw from among not-for-profit central Indiana arts groups that posted on the blog. The recipient turned out to be Heartland Actors Repertory Theatre, presenters of summer Shakespeare at White River State Park. And I'm happy to report that after a brutal four or so hours of play, I outlasted the likes of Rik Smits, Slick Leonard and others as the field whittled down from 84 to 19. At that point, the collective decision was made to chop the pot which, combined with cash for being one of the last two "celebs" in the game (NBA Hall-of-Famer Mel Daniels being the other), allowed me to check out with $900 for HART. Almost as fun as the game was dining with Daniels and his teammates, and hearing stories of the early days of the Pacers. (No, I'll never tell.)

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  1. If what you stated is true, then this article is entirely inaccurate. "State sells bonds" is same as "State borrows money". Supposedly the company will "pay for them". But since we are paying the company, we are still paying for this road with borrowed money, even though the state has $2 billion in the bank.

  2. Andrew hit the nail on the head. AMTRAK provides terrible service and that is why the state has found a contractor to improve the service. More trips, on-time performance, better times, cleanliness and adequate or better restrooms. WI-FI and food service will also be provided. Transit from outlying areas will also be provided. I wouldn't take it the way it is but with the above services and marketing of the service,ridership will improve and more folks will explore Indy and may even want to move here.

  3. They could take the property using eminent domain and save money by not paying the church or building a soccer field and a new driveway. Ctrwd has monthly meetings open to all customers of the district. The meetings are listed and if the customers really cared that much they would show. Ctrwd works hard in every way they can to make sure the customer is put first. Overflows damage the surrounding environment and cost a lot of money every year. There have been many upgrades done through the years to help not send flow to Carmel. Even with the upgrades ctrwd cannot always keep up. I understand how a storage tank could be an eye sore, but has anyone thought to look at other lift stations or storage tanks. Most lift stations are right in the middle of neighborhoods. Some close to schools and soccer fields, and some right in back yards, or at least next to a back yard. We all have to work together to come up with a proper solution. The proposed solution by ctrwd is the best one offered so far.

  4. Fox has comments from several people that seem to have some inside information. I would refer to their website. Changed my whole opionion of this story.

  5. This place is great! I'm piggy backing and saying the Cobb salad is great. But the ribs are awesome. $6.49 for ribs and 2 sides?! They're delicious. If you work downtown, head over there.

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