BY RUTH RICE
Laurel Highlands Polar Plunge to benefit Western Pennsylvania Special Olympics athletes will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Quemahoning Reservoir near Boswell.
Registration will begin at 10 a.m., and those not brave enough to plunge can support the cause by registering under “Too Chicken to Plunge” for a $50 donation.
The plunge is open to the public, and spectators are welcome free of charge.
This year’s Special Olympics games will begin with an opening ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Sunday at Central Park in downtown Johnstown.
Athletes will gather at the Holiday Inn-Downtown on Market Street and proceed to the park.
The ceremony will culminate with the lighting of the Olympic Torch.
Competitions will begin Monday and continue through Tuesday.
Alpine skiing will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday and 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at Hidden Valley Four Seasons Resort.
Cross-country skiing will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday and 9:15 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, and snowshoeing will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday and 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Blue Knob Four Seasons Resort.
Figure skating will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday and 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Cambria County War Memorial Arena.
Speed skating will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday and Tuesday at Planet Ice in Richland Township.
Awards and closing ceremonies will be held Tuesday at each venue.
A highlight of the games is the Victory Dance, which will be held at 7 p.m. Monday at Richland High School.
The dance troupe Step Afrika! will perform in celebration of Black History Month at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center, Richland Township.
Tickets are $15, $22 and $25.
Information: 269-7200, 800-846-2787 or www.upjarts.org.
“American History – Land of the Free” will be presented by Johnstown Symphony Orchestra at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center in Richland Township.
This is the symphony’s first concert in celebration of Black History Month.
Tickets are $25, $30 and $35 for adults and $10 for students.
Information: 535-6738 or 269-7200.
The second annual Rotary Rock Fest will be held at 9 p.m. Saturday at Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
Doors will open at 8. Featured bands will be Shades of June, Maiden America and Wyld Syde.
Proceeds will benefit community projects and humanitarian endeavors undertaken by the Rotary Club of Richland Township.
Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.
Allied for art
The annual Winter Show of Allied Artists of Johnstown will be on display through Feb. 23 in the lobby of AmeriServ Financial, Main and Franklin streets, downtown Johnstown.
There are 72 works of art in the show, representing 41 artists.
Mediums include photography, acrylic, oil, watercolor, relief carving, mixed media, pastel, pencil and wood burning.
Information: 266-0874 or www.johnstownart.com.
Mardi Gras fun
The seventh annual Fat Friday Fundraiser to benefit Roxbury Bandshell Preservation Alliance will be held at 6 tonight at Pasquerilla Conference Center, 301 Napoleon St., downtown Johnstown.
Dinner tickets, which are still available, are $25.
“Cinema Judaica: The War Years, 1939-1949” will be on display through March 31 at Heritage Discovery Center, 201 Sixth Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
The exhibition of iconic Hollywood film posters is on loan from Hebrew Union College’s Jewish Institute of Religion Museum.
Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays.
Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors and $6 for students. JAHA members will be admitted free.
Stretches & wiggles
Yoga classes for all skill levels will be held at Bottle Works Ethnic Arts Center, 411 Third Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
Classes taught by Judy Hunter will be held at 5:45 p.m. Mondays through March 11.
Classes taught by Adriann White will be held at 5:45 and 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Feb. 27.
The cost is $8 per class or $56 for an eight-week session.
White also will teach a four-week session of belly dance classes from 8 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays through Feb. 27.
The art of American cabaret-style belly dancing will be taught, and participants will learn basic belly dance choreography and how to incorporate it into a dance routine.
The cost is $25 for the four-week session.
Hip scarves will be available for purchase for $15 at the first class.
Registration: 241-8122 for Hunter and 539-0924 for White.
A chicken and biscuit dinner sponsored by Greek Catholic Union Lodge 625 will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday in the church hall at Holy Trinity Byzantine Catholic Church, 217 Fourth St., East Conemaugh.
Dinner will include chicken with gravy over biscuits, mashed potatoes, salad, dessert and beverage.
The cost is $7 for adults and $3.50 for children ages 12 and younger.
Music is on the menu at the Venue of Merging Arts, 305 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
Broken Fences, Striped Maple Hollow and The Crew of the Half Moon will perform from 7 to 11 tonight.
Indie folk duo Broken Fences, named 2012 Band of the Year by Pittsburgh’s 91.3 FM, released its debut album in June and will make its debut appearance in Johnstown.
Striped Maple Hollow is a four-piece Americana band from Johnstown, and The Crew of the Half Moon is an indie-folk duo from Johnstown that just released their debut album in December.
The show is for all ages, and admission is $5.
Information: 410-2245 or www.thevoma.com.
Friends of the Cambria County Library’s Inclined To Read Bookstore will highlight books about pets and animals of all kinds and books pertaining to wars that involved the United States at the library, 248 Main St. in downtown Johnstown.
Hardback books are $1 and paperbacks are 25 cents each or five for $1.
Bookstore hours will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays.
Love in the air
“Love Songs & Valentines,” a dinner-theater show, will be presented at 6 p.m. Thursday at Oakhurst Tea Room, Somerset.
Mary McCormack of Alabaster Productions and special guest Jessie Glover will perform romantic songs from the 1940s to the present day.
This is the first in a series of dinner-theater shows to be offered at Oakhurst Tea Room.
Tickets are $38 and include a complete meal followed by the show.
A book signing by Central City freelance author Jean L. Croyle will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Pages and Light Book Store, 314 Georgian Place, Somerset.
Croyle will sign copies of her book, “Encounters,” a humorous journal of real-life dating experiences.
There will be several opportunities to make valentines this weekend at Dressler Center for the Arts, 214 S. Harrison Ave., Somerset.
In “C’mon, Cut It Out,” valentines will be made using papercutting from 6 to 8 tonight.
The cost is $20 for nonmembers and $16 for members.
Light refreshments will be provided.
Registration is limited to the first 10 callers.
In “Origami & Valentines,” origami will be used to create valentines on Saturday.
A beginners class will be held from 10 a.m. to noon, and an advanced class will be held from 1 to 3 p.m.
The beginners class will make easy valentines, while those in the advanced class with more folding experience will create gift boxes, cards, toys and jewelry.
The class fee is $20 for members and $25 for nonmembers and the materials fee is $5 for beginners and $7 for advanced.
“Ain’t Misbehavin’ ” will be performed by members of Band of Brothers Shakespeare Company at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Feb. 15 and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 16 at Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for seniors, students and military members for the show only.
Tickets are $25 for dinner and the show.
There will not be a dinner for the matinee performance.
Tickets are available at Ace’s; Mr. Muffler, 1022 Scalp Ave. in Richland Township; or reserved by phone at 536-4176.
The comedy “Let’s Murder Marsha” will be presented by the Bedford County Players at 7 tonight, Saturday and Feb. 15-16 and at 2 p.m. Sunday and Feb. 17 at the Homewood Spring House Estates, 150 Victoria Ave., Everett.
Friday and Saturday performances will cost $25, which includes dinner and the show.
Sunday matinees will cost $13, which includes the show and light refreshments.
Altoona Community Theater will present its 20th anniversary production of the backstage comedy “Noises Off” at 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 15-16 and 2 p.m. Feb. 17 at Mishler Theatre, 1208 12th Ave., downtown Altoona.
“Noises Off” is a three-act play-within-a-play, with a second-rate touring company readying a production of a mediocre British sex farce titled “Nothing On.”
Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for students.
Information: 943-4357 or www.altoonacommunitytheatre.com.
Music and art
The 2013 Blue Monday season will kick off at 6 p.m. Monday at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Altoona, 1210 11th Ave.
The event will feature a light supper, music by Mountain City Grass, a traditional bluegrass group based out of central Pennsylvania, and a tour of the latest exhibition, “Julie Bernstein Engelmann: Being Spirit,” with the artist in attendance.
The cost is $20 per person.
Information: 946-4464 or www.sama-art.org.
“The Civil War in Pennsylvania” will be on display through March 5 in the second floor gallery at Heritage Discovery Center, 201 Sixth Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
The traveling exhibit was created by the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh for its affiliate program members and is expected to travel to 40 sites in four years.
The exhibit will feature five lifelike museum figures, artifacts, previously unseen photographs and large museum panels describing Pennsylvania’s contributions to the Civil War.
Admission is free to JAHA members or with museum admission.
Information: 539-1889, www.jaha.org or www.heinzhistorycenter.org.
“The Feline Art Show” will be on display through March 8 at the Wolf-Kuhn Gallery at Mount Aloysius College, Cresson.
An opening reception will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Feb. 17 in the gallery.
The art featuring domestic cats, which was put together by the Mount Aloysius Art Alliance, will include photos or paintings done by the artist, pieces from a collection or antique cat art.
Information: 749-7341 or 977-3238.
The Orchid and Tropical Bonsai Show will be on display through Feb. 24 at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Pittsburgh.
Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and until 10 p.m. Fridays.
There will be elegant and vibrant exhibits of orchids in many hues and bonsai, the Japanese art of training dwarfed trees to take on the shapes of their larger counterparts in nature, all designed by Phipps staff.
Admission is $15 for adults, $14 for seniors and students and $11 for children ages 2-18.
Members and children younger than age 2 will be admitted free.
“An Industrial Revolution: The Photography of Amelia Patsy” will be on display through July 6 at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Johnstown, located at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center on the campus of Pitt-Johnstown, Richland Township.
The exhibit features 55 gelatin silver prints and cyanotypes chronicling much of western Pennsylvania’s industrial heritage and includes several Johnstown landmarks.
Museum hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.
“125 Years of Organized Jewish Life: 1888 to 2013,” the Johnstown Jewish Community Heritage Project, will be on display through September at Heritage Discovery Center, 201 Sixth Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.
The exhibition illuminates the history, traditions and achievements of Johnstown’s Jewish community.
Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
“Julie Bernstein Engelmann: Being Spirit” will be on display through April 20 at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Altoona, 1210 11th Ave.
This retrospective will highlight Engelmann’s abstract canvases, which are renowned for their lush colors and textures and have won many best of show awards throughout western Pennsylvania.
“Red, White and Blue in Black and White: The American Scene in Prints, Drawings and Photographs” will be on display through May 4 in the Margery Wolf-Kuhn Gallery at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Loretto on the campus of St. Francis University.
The exhibition includes approximately 35 works from the museum’s permanent collection.
Works range in date from 1890-1991, with the majority being American Scene subjects produced during the heyday of Regionalist art in the 1920s and 1930s.
Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and 1 to 5 p.m. Saturdays.
Information: 472-3920 or www.sama-art.org.
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