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First Things

November 2023

Something Good

Concert benefits Loaves & Fishes

From barbershop to bluegrass, six acts will be featured during the annual Loaves & Fishes Benefit Concert organized by the K’zoo Folklife Organization.

The concert begins at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 4 at Trinity Lutheran Church, 504 S. Westnedge Ave. The performers include pianist Shirley Kime, rock cover band His Boy Elroy, folk/country singer Carrie McFerrin with Mike List, barbershop quartet Four Got To Shave, singer/songwriter Bob Rowe and the Green Valley Boys with Luke Lenhart, and the Schlitz Creek Bluegrass Band.

Admission is free, but donations of non-perishable food and of money to Loaves & Fishes, a local food pantry, are requested. For more information, visit

Something Bluesy

Buddy Guy stops in Kalamazoo

Blues legend Buddy Guy will be stopping at the Kalamazoo State Theatre on his Damn Right Farewell Tour. The Grammy-winning artist will perform at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 17.

The 87-year-old Guy, who has been making music since he was 13, has become noted for his slashing electric guitar riffs and passionate vocals. He is one of the faces of Chicago blues. Tickets are $59.50–$99.50. For more information or to buy tickets, go to

Something Historical

Library spotlights Civil War history

Two Civil War history events will be featured at the Portage District Library this month.

The first event, Meet Abraham Lincoln: Celebrating the 160th Anniversary of the Gettysburg Address, is set for 2–4 p.m. Nov. 11. It will feature historian Norma Clack sharing the story of her family’s Civil War flag, followed by professional Lincoln reenactor Kevin Wood reciting the famous speech.

The second event, Blades of the American Civil War, set for 6:30–8:30 p.m. Nov. 15, will feature Jerry Berg from the Swordsmanship Museum and Academy discussing swords from the Civil War era. Local historian Steve Rossio will also be on hand to discuss muskets and provide a live musket demonstration outside.

Registration is required, since only 35 spots are available for this event. For more information or to register, visit

Something Mexican

Mariachi band performs at State Theatre

The Grammy-nominated group Mariachi Herencia de México will perform at the Kalamazoo State Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 18.

Mariachi music traces its origins back to the 18th century in places like Guadalajara and Mexico City. Mariachi Herencia de México has been around since 2017 and has put out five albums that have topped the Latin streaming charts. The group’s bilingual repertoire blends genres like bolero, cumbia, tango and swing with lyrics that speak of the Latino and immigrant experience.
Tickets are $29–$49 in advance and $34–$54 on the day of the show. For more information or to buy tickets, visit

Something Local

Michigan-made items at Kalamatopia

You can enjoy the crisp fall weather while shopping in an outdoor marketplace if you go to Kalamatopia, set for 5–8 p.m. Nov. 3 in the 100 block of North Kalamazoo Mall.

Showcasing more than 30 vendors with goods ranging from jewelry and pet accessories to food and candles, the market will feature products made by artisans and sellers from Kalamazoo County and other parts of Michigan. For more information, visit

Encore Magazine

Encore Magazine is Southwest Michigan’s Magazine, bringing readers intriguing images and stories of the good things, good works and great people of our corner of the mitten. Published 12 times a year, Encore in its fifth decade of serving Southwest Michigan, carrying on a historic tradition of being the premier lifestyle publication of the greater Kalamazoo area.

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