- Catch John Gierach out of his waders and with free hands at Borders on Thursday.
When my fly fishing buddies hauled me deep into Montana's woods a few years ago, on a dirt road to Rat Lake, I didn't at first realize it was the Rat Lake, about which famous fishing writer John Gierach had written. (Or so my friends believed.) I, never having developed quite the fishing fever as they, didn't (and still don't) tend to ingest lots of fishing literature. But those that do should be excited to know that the author will read from and sign his new work, Fool's Paradise, at 7 tonight at Borders (2120 Southgate Road). Call 632-6611 if you're fishing for more info. MS
Brantley Scott Haines has played the Wolf in Into the Woods, and the Prince in Cinderella. Now, he's back to animal form as the hideous titular character in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. He, along with Natalie Jensen as Belle, and Malcolm Ulbrick as Gaston, will teach don't-judge-a-book-by-its-cover-type lessons at 8 tonight at the Fine Arts Center (30 W. Dale St.). The Cory Moosman-directed production runs through June 1, with ticket prices ranging from $18 to $31. Call 634-5583 to reserve your seats. By the way, actors will chat with audience members in the lobby after this, and every, performance, so maybe you'll get a chance to ask Haines why he never gets to play a character with an actual name. KW
Lions? Check. Tigers? Check. Ligers? Check. Bears? Not so much. Big Cats of Serenity Springs is a sanctuary for really big felines. We're talking 50- to 150-pound bobcats, mountain lions and leopards. And those guys can eat. This nonprofit group, based near Calhan, is holding a fundraiser today to help pay for food and other expenses at their facility, which provides care for more than 120 cats. The Annual Family Day Celebration will feature music, gourmet food, games and entertainment starting at 11 a.m. at the City Auditorium (221 E. Kiowa St.). Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12. For more, call 761-1120 or visit bigcatsofserenitysprings.org. AA
- American Idol fave Carrie Underwood gets unbundled Tuesday at the World Arena.
Depending on Mom's tastes, you've got choices. If she likes music, take her to Pueblo's Runyon Theater (611 N. Main St.) for the 2 p.m. finale of Always ... Patsy Cline performed by the Damon Runyon Repertory. Matinee tickets are $10 with reservations recommended (719/564-0579). For classical, go to the Colorado Springs Philharmonic's last Mozart & Friends Series concert at 2:30 p.m. in First United Methodist Church (420 N. Nevada Ave.). Tickets are $18-$20 each at 520-SHOW (7469), ticketswest.com or the door. If she likes urban art and hip-hop (a cool mom), head to the wrapup of Nocturnal Mockery 7, from noon to 7 p.m. at Cedars Jazz Club (3125 Sinton Road). Entry to shop or spectate any time this weekend is $5, and more info may be found by e-mailing email@example.com. RR
I don't remember much from my high school history class, but I do remember my teacher's mullet. He might have told some lies, but I wouldn't know. I was too focused on his mullet. James Loewen does not rock a mullet, but is an avid historian, author and former University of Vermont professor. At 7:30 tonight he will be at the OUC Ballroom on the CSU-Pueblo campus (2200 Bonforte Blvd., Pueblo). The free lecture inspired by his book, Lies My Teacher Told Me, will conclude the four-part, Voices of America Distinguished Lecture Series on campus. Call 719/369-3026 for more. DO
Yes, I watch American Idol. And, yes, I love country music. I'm proud to say I voted for Carrie Underwood when she won Season 4 of the FOX musical-competition phenomena. It won't surprise you then that her coming to Colorado Springs makes me giddy with excitement. Catch the three-time Grammy winner and back-to-back CMA Female Vocalist of the Year at 7:30 tonight when she storms the World Arena (3185 Venetucci Blvd.). Tickets run $32-$52. Grab them at ticketswest.com or call 576-2626. Simon Cowell won't be there, though "Firecracker" Josh Turner will get the country party started. KA
Everyone loves monkeys, except maybe for those creepy surrogate mothers that maternal-deprivation scientist Harry Harlow fashioned out of barbed wire and used to raise emotionally disturbed baby chimps. Fortunately, Harlow is not a member of the Suburban Stage Munkys, the Colorado Springs improv/standup/sketch/whatever comedy troupe that swings through the Underground (110 N. Nevada Ave.) for a free performance at 9 p.m. The SSM's evolved, if you believe in that sort of thing, from M.I.S.T. (Masquer's Improv & Sketch Troupe) to further populate our fair city's burgeoning improv scene. Call 578-7771 for more info. BF
This week's 7 Days contributors: Alexa Acord, Kirsten Akens, Bill Forman, David Owens, Ralph Routon, Matthew Schniper and Kirk Woundy.