WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
@brianbingaman on Twitter
Banana Factory: Textile artist Barbara Schulman’s fabric quilts are the focus of a new “Deciphering the Universe” exhibit on display through March 22 in the Banko Family Gallery at the Banana Factory, 25 W. Third St., Bethlehem. The exhibit will showcase a series of 15 quilts made from fabric designed by Schulman using dye, batik and discharge techniques. Gallery hours are 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays and 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends. An opening reception will take place 6 to 9 p.m. Feb. 6 as part of the Banana Factory’s First Friday celebration. Visit www.bananafactory.org.
The Print Center: New exhibits on view through March 28 include prints and artist books with “The Knitter’s Hand and the Telegrapher’s Fist” by Denise Bookwalter, and “The Home Stage” by Merion artist Jessica Todd Harper. The center is at 1614 Latimer St., Philadelphia and hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Call (215) 735-6090.
Montgomery County Community College: Grammy Award-winning singer Gregory Porter will blend jazz, ’70s soul and modern sounds at 4 p.m. Feb. 8 in the Science Center Theater, 340 DeKalb Pike, Whitpain. Tickets cost $30. Visit www.mc3.edu/livelyarts or call (215) 641-6518.
Philly Pops: A “Classic Soul” program featuring singers Capathia Jenkins and Darius de Haas with the Philly Pops, is performed at 8 p.m. Feb. 6, and 3 p.m. Feb. 7-8 in Verizon Hall of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, 300 S. Broad St., Philadelphia. Tickets range from $28-$129. Go to www.phillypops.org or call (215) 893-1999.
North Penn S-Gaugers: A portable S-gauge model train layout will be open to the public 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Feb. 6-7 at the Lower Providence Community Library, 50 Parklane Drive, Lower Providence. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (610) 666-6640, ext. 25.
Day of the groundhog
Schwenkfelder Library and Heritage Center: Celebrate and learn about Pennsylvania German culture, the folkloric significance of the groundhog, dialect phrases, and help the grundsau predict the weather forecast for spring at the sixth annual Children’s Groundhog Lodge 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Jan. 31 (snow date is Feb. 7). There will be crafts and games, and family members are welcome to join in too. Snacks and refreshments will be provided. There is a $5 per person suggested donation to attend the program. The center is at 105 Seminary St., Pennsburg. Sign up by Jan. 28 at (215) 679-3103 or email@example.com.
Pennypacker Mills: Pre-registration and pre-payment are required for a Valentine craft workshop for children 5 and up 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 7 in the Classroom Building at Pennypacker Mills, 5 Haldeman Road, Perkiomen Township. Refreshments will be served. The crafts will be done in Victorian style with ribbons, fancy papers and “scrap,” a type of clip art available 100+ years ago. Kids will be making a hot air balloon decoration, a fancy candy container, a special flower pin for their Valentine, and a card fashioned out of a handprint. The fee is $5 per child and children need to be accompanied by an adult. Call (610) 287-9349.
Laymen Playmen: The community theater group presents the musical “Oliver!” as their 28th production at 8 p.m. Feb. 5-6; 2 and 8 p.m. Feb. 7-8 and 14; and 2 p.m. Feb. 15 Lansdale United Methodist Church, 300 N. Broad St., Lansdale. Proceeds are donated to local charities. Ticket reservations can be made by calling (215) 368-9484. Also visit www.laymenplaymen.com.
Theatre Exile: A suicidal 600-pound man decides he wants to reconnect with his daughter in “The Whale” Feb. 5-March 1 at Studio X, 1340 S. 13th St., Philadelphia. For show times and tickets, call (215) 218-4022.
ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks: An off-Broadway production of the interactive show “Tony ‘n’ Tina’s Wedding” runs Feb. 5-7 and 12-14 at the Musikfest Café, 101 Founders Way, Bethlehem. It includes a pre-show cash bar, ceremony and reception full of mishaps and comedy, plus a buffet dinner with wedding cake, music and dancing. For tickets and show times, visit www.steelstacks.org.
Mount Hope Estate & Winery: A Jane-Austen-themed, interactive, culinary murder mystery dinner theater will be featured Feb. 6-March 28. Guests can enjoy a four-course meal with the stars of the play, then maybe participate in activities such as English country dancing, tours of the estate mansion and more. Performances are at 7 p.m. Fridays, 1 and 7 p.m. Saturdays. Mount Hope Estate, home of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, is on Route 72, south of Pennsylvania Turnpike exit 266 in Cornwall. Admission is $42.95 per person; reservations are strongly recommended. Visit www.parenfaire.com/murdermystery or call (717) 665-7021, ext. 231.
Stagecrafters Theater: “Something Intangible” tells the story of two brothers running a studio during the golden age of Hollywood. Show times at the Stagecrafters Theater, 8130 Germantown Ave., Chestnut Hill, are 8 p.m. Jan. 30-31, Feb. 5-7 and Feb. 12-14, and 2 p.m. Sundays Feb. 1-15. Tickets are $17 online (two for $25), $20 at the door (two for $30). Visit www.thestagecrafters.org or call (215) 247-9913.
Bryn Mawr College: The college’s Performing Arts Series presents two different lineups of various performers Jan. 30 and 31 at 8 p.m. at the Hepburn Teaching Theater in Goodhart Hall, 101 N. Merion Ave., Bryn Mawr. Most performer sets will last 12 minutes. On Jan. 30 will be multimedia artist Cynthia Hopkins, an ensemble theater piece based on Chekhov with music and dance, filmmaker Judy Dennis showing selections from “The Dancer Films,” comedian Chris Davis, artist Rucyl presenting an experimental work featuring electronic instruments of her own design, and performance artist Annie Wilson. On Jan. 31, check out Martha Graham Cracker, modern dance duo Chelsea & Magda, filmmaker Peter Rose, spoken word artist Raphael Xavier, dancer Christina Zani, and New York City-based DJ Rekha. Tickets are $20, $18 for seniors, $10 for students and Dance Pass holders, and $5 for children under 12. Go to http://brynmawr.edu/arts/series.html or call (610) 526-5210.
DCP Theatre: High school friends, who went to dancing school together, plan to recreate the annual dance event of their youth in the romantic comedy “The Snow Ball,” which from Jan. 30-Feb. 8 runs 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays; and 8 p.m. nightly from Feb. 12-14 at 795 Ridge Road, Salford Township. Tickets are $15, $13 for seniors. Check www.dcptheatre.com or call (215) 234-0966.
Bryn Athyn College: The story of Joan of Arc is re-imagined in “The Lark,” Jan. 31-Feb. 7 at the Mitchell Performing Arts Center, 800 Tomlinson Road, Bryn Athyn. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 31 and Feb. 6-7, and 2 p.m. Feb. 1. Tickets are $12, $7 for students and children. Visit www.mitchellcenter.info or call (267) 502-2793.
Philadelphia Theatre Company: Family and forgiveness in a changing society is the them of the play “Mothers and Sons,” running Feb. 6-March 8 at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, Broad and Lombard streets, Philadelphia. Tickets range from $46-59, with discounts for students, seniors and groups. Call (215) 985-0420 or visit www.philadelphiatheatrecompany.org.
Amici Opera Company: Puccini’s “La Boheme” will be staged at 2:30 p.m. Feb. 1 in the chapel at Dock Woods Community, 175 Dock Drive, Towamencin, and at 4 p.m. Feb. 7 at Redeemer United Methodist Church, 1128 Cottman Ave., Philadelphia. Call (215) 224-0257 for more information or reservations.
Lunar New Year
Penn Museum: It’s the Year of the Sheep with a Chinese New Year Celebration 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 31 at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, 3260 South St., Philadelphia. It includes music and dance performances, tai chi and Shaolin-style kung fu demonstrations, calligraphy and tangram workshops, language presentations, children’s activities, and arts and crafts. The day ends with a Grand Finale Lion Dance Parade. Admission is $15, $13 for seniors, $10 for children 6-17 and students. For more information, call (215) 898-2680.
Matters of the heart
Montgomery Mall: Grand View Health sponsors a heart health fair in celebration of American Heart Month from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 7 near Macy’s on the lower level of the mall, Routes 309 and 202, Montgomery Township. The event will feature one-on-one discussions with cardiologists, free blood pressure checks and free cholesterol screenings. The event will also include CPR, lifestyle and fitness demonstrations by Grand View Emergency Medical Services, Dr. Drill Instructor Fitness Boot Camp Program, The Dance Place Zumba, Bucks County Bungee Jumpers and Fitzpatrick School of Irish Dance.