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First Things – Nov. 2022

KIA’s Annual Art Sale

Out of Favor Boys

Something Charitable

K’zoo Folklife hosts benefit concert

A number of the area’s musicians will be playing for charity in the K’zoo Folklife Organization’s Loaves & Fishes Benefit Concert Nov. 19 at Trinity Lutheran Church, 504 S. Westnedge Ave.

This is the 25th year of the benefit concert, with proceeds going to Loaves & Fishes, a Kalamazoo County food pantry. The concert begins at 5:30 p.m. and will feature the Luke Lenhart Band, Dana Scott, the Mall City Harmonizers, Out of Favor Boys, Schlitz Creek bluegrass band and Shirley Kime.

K’zoo Folklife is an organization promoting local acoustic musicians. Admission to the concert is free with a non-perishable food donation.

Something Artistic

KIA hosts annual Holiday Art Sale

The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts transforms into an artists’ market Nov. 17–19 for the annual Kirk Newman Art School Holiday Art Sale.

This is the 49th year for the sale, which features handmade works by KIA students and faculty in a variety of media, including wood, metal, glass, ceramics, block prints, etchings, paintings, wearable art, jewelry and holiday-inspired items.

The sale begins at 5 p.m. Nov. 17 with KIA-members-only shopping. Public hours run from 5–8 p.m. Nov. 18 and 9 a.m–3 p.m. Nov. 19. For more information, visit

Something Bluegrass

Billy Strings to play at Wings

Grammy Award-winning bluegrass guitarist and Michigan native Billy Strings will perform at 8 p.m. Nov. 3 at the Wings Event Center, 3600 Vanrick Drive.

Strings won a Grammy in 2021 for his album Home and was named the New Artist of the Year in 2019 by the International Bluegrass Music Awards. He is touring to promote his 2021 album, Renewal, and the upcoming release of Me and Dad, which he recorded with his father, Terry Barber. Strings will be performing with bandmates Billy Failing (banjo, vocals, piano), Royal Masat (bass, vocals), and Jarrod Walker (mandolin, vocals, guitar).

Tickets are $39.50–$69.50 and available online at

Something Stout

Who will win the Kalamazoo Beer Cup?

Bourbon-barrel-aged stouts are on tap in the last tasting event of the annual Kalamazoo Beer Cup competition. The event runs from 6:30–8 p.m. Nov. 18 at Kalamazoo Beer Exchange, 211 E.
Water St.

The annual competition, sponsored by West Michigan Beer Tours, has regional breweries present their brews in various categories for a public blind tasting. The winner in each category takes home a Kalamazoo Beer Cup trophy. The competition began in February.

Tickets for the event are $39 and include beer, appetizers and a chance to win prizes as well as history and tasting tips on the beer style. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

Something Jolly

Holiday Parade set for Nov. 19

Getting folks in a merry mood for the upcoming holidays is the aim of the Maple Hill Holiday Parade, which takes place at 11 a.m. Nov. 19 in downtown Kalamazoo.

With marching bands, holiday-themed floats and giant balloons, the parade is the annual kick-off of the holiday season in downtown Kalamazoo. The parade route will start at Lovell and Jasper streets, travel west to Park Street, north on Park Street to Michigan Avenue, east on Michigan Avenue to Pitcher Street and south on Pitcher to Lovell Street.

High school students with decorated cards will be walking the route to gather donations of canned and dry goods and money for the Loaves & Fishes food pantry.

After the parade, there will be activities and games on the Kalamazoo Valley Museum grounds, and Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at KVCC’s Anna Whitten Hall, 202 N. Rose St., until 2:30 p.m.

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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