May 23, 2017
Max Wellman and Katy Merriman, married in real life, play a couple falling in and out of love in "The Last Five Years."
DRAMA BUILDS AT NOCE
  
The jazz club Noce brings a little drama to its stage once again with the production of "The Last Five Years," a musical by Jason Robert Brown starring Katy Merriman and Max Wellman. Performances are June 2-11.

The emotionally powerful and intimate musical about two New Yorkers in their 20s who fall in and
out of love was adapted as a 2014 movie starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.   

Noce will produce this show in the main stage room normally set aside for live jazz and cabaret
performances. The intimate setting will feature a full pit of professional musicians, including two
cellos along with violin. Showtimes vary. For details, click here or call 515-244-5399. 

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Members of the Belin Quartet alternate among performances and include John Helmich, Tracy Engman Finkelshteyn, George Work, Julie Fox Henson, and Sherida Josephson. Learn more about each of them here.
QUARTET PERFORMS FREE (NO STRINGS ATTACHED)
  
Yet another joy of the season returns with the outdoor concerts of the delightful Belin Quartet. Most Fridays through July, you can find them performing from 12:15 to 1 p.m. For example, this Friday (May 26) hear them at People's Plaza, located at the foot of the State Capitol's west terrace. On
June 2 and again June 9, they'll be on the lawn of the Central Library downtown. For details on the complete series, click here.

Can't make it to a Friday concert? Bring a blanket or lawn chairs to the Johnston Public Library Sunday, June 4, at 7 p.m. when the Belin Quartet performs for Sundaes on Sunday. Like the quartet's Friday outdoor concerts, it's free -- and this one includes ice cream! 

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by Design presents dsmDining

The decor and atmosphere of Range Grill and Golf is predicted to be on par with a country club.
COMING TO URBANDALE: RANGE GRILL + GOLF
  
By Wini Moranville 
  
Greater Des Moines' restaurant scene is a crowded field, so if you want to get in on the action, you'd better do something off the beaten path. With his new Range Grill + Golf, slated to open in mid-July, Steve Garrels seems to be doing just that. The venue will combine a restaurant, bar and six golf simulators in one building on Hickman Road near Lifetime Fitness. Garrels, who also owns the Signature Male hair salon, said that he "fell in love with the concept" when he experienced Fairways, a similar enterprise in Chicago.

If you, like me, immediately pictured a sports bar, think again. The way Garrels described his vision to me, it sounds more like a hip, modern interpretation of a country club (albeit less stuffy and with no dues). Garrels says the interior, designed by Invision Architecture, will include walnut furnishings and a gray, black and chartreuse color scheme. A three-season screened-in porch, complete with a glass garage-style door, will open directly to the lounge. Des Moines' own Slingshot Architecture designed the building.

The restaurant's name has a dual meaning. It refers to the golf range, of course, but the menu itself will bring to mind another kind of range: With elk tenderloin and bison filets, ribeyes and burgers, there's a certain "home on the range" appeal. I also spotted plenty of more common options, including steaks, burgers, buffalo wings, salmon, and shrimp Alfredo pasta, on the preliminary menu. A non-buffet weekend brunch is in the works.

The chefs are Jeff Snowgren, formerly executive chef at AJ's Steakhouse at Prairie Meadows, and Jeremy Brittain, formerly sous chef at Centro.

Range will be at 11865 Hickman Road, in the complex of businesses near Lifetime Fitness. The website is under construction at rangedesmoines.com. No phone number was available at press time; to contact the restaurant, email info@rangedesmoines.com.

Wini Moranville covers food and dining for dsm. Follow her at  All Things Food - DSM Wini Moranville.
It's Pork-Can-Beans, artfully rendered in boxed and canned foods for the Food Bank of Iowa.
MAKE ART OUT OF FOOD? THESE FOLKS CAN
 
More than 13 tons of food was donated to Food Bank of Iowa in connection with its recent A-CAN-EMY Awards celebration. The event marked the 20th anniversary of Central Iowa Canstruction, a fun competition among local businesses that create elaborate sculptures using canned food they collected for the cause.

An entry entitled "Pork-Can-Beans," created by RDG Planning & Design, won the Chick Herbert People's Choice Award, based on voting by the 245 people who attended the event at the State Historical Museum.
Through the years, Canstruction's  competition has donated over 325,000 pounds of food to Food Bank of Iowa.
 
The rock band Abby Normal performs Friday, June 2, at Commons Off the Clock.
DOUBLE-HEADER FREEBIES AT COWLES COMMONS
  
After being cancelled by weather last fall and again last week, Commons Off the Clock has a better forecast for Friday, June 2, from 4 to 7:30 p.m. at Cowles Commons downtown. Admission is free to this downtown party with music by Abby Normal. Beer and food vendors will sell their wares. If weather stomps on it a third time, we'll begin to wonder if the event is haunted by the spirits of Nollen Plaza and Seniom Sed. Crossing our fingers.

Earlier on June 2, a lunchtime party at Cowles Commons offers free food and music, courtesy of Bankers Trust, kicking off its centennial celebration with a public party from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.    
Henri Matisse illustrated and signed a 1935 edition of "Ulysses" by James Joyce. The illustrations don't depict Dublin, where the novel is set, but rather evoke Homer's epic "Odyssey," which Joyce used as a framework for "Ulysses."
SALISBURY HOUSE 'TREASURES TOUR' LATER TODAY
  
If you haven't yet taken Salisbury House & Gardens' Treasures Tour, then today's your chance to do so. Our advice? Take advantage of this unique cultural offering as the Salisbury library is without a doubt one of the city's most dazzling gems.
 
On the tour, you'll get to see and learn about some of the library's 3,500 tomes as well as significant artifacts and art. The exquisite book collection includes such rarities as a 1935 edition of James Joyce's "Ulysses," illustrated and signed by Henri Matisse; the 14th-century "Book of Hours," a prayer book that predates the printing press; all nine first editions of "Leaves of Grass" by Walt Whitman; and first editions of literary giants Ernest Hemingway, D.H. Lawrence and William Faulkner, among others.
 
The tour, led by curator Megan Stout Sibbel, begins at 5:30 p.m. with a reception. The cost is $30 per person -- which we think is one of the best bargains in town. When we prepared this newsletter on Monday, tickets were still available through the Salisbury website.

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