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Nick Krug

Stories by Nick

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Chef's Choice: Crimson & Brews tacos with Greg Renck

For this month’s edition of Chef’s Choice, I joined Greg Renck, owner of Terrebonne Po’Boys at 805 Vermont St., for the taco special at Crimson & Brews, 925 Iowa St.

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In one square: Artist Michael Benedetti uses architecture-inspired works to showcase life experiences

When artist Michael Benedetti first began exploring the idea of memories in his art, it was the summer of his third year of graduate school at the University of Georgia and he was taking measurements of everything in his apartment — everything from the space itself on down to his record collection.

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Microorganisms' 'crazy' structures inspire sculptor Shiyuan Xu

Leave it to an artist to draw inspiration from some of the most minuscule of muses. For Shiyuan Xu, a sculptor from Hangzhou, China and one of two artists in residence at the Lawrence Arts Center, her inspiration has largely come from subjects on the microscopic scale, unable to be seen by the naked eye.

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Filmmaker says famed journalist William Allen White's story is just as relevant today

Even though Kansas newspaper editor and editorialist William Allen White died nearly three-quarters of a century ago, Lawrence filmmaker Kevin Willmott says he views the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist as a modern figure.

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Tennessee Williams' classic 'The Glass Menagerie' opening at Theatre Lawrence

In a career that has spanned 50 years, Piet Knetsch has never directed the same play twice. Or, rather, he hadn’t directed the same play twice until he approached Theatre Lawrence about "The Glass Menagerie."

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A look behind the scenes of Kansas' 2018 Final Four appearance

Beyond being the greatest stage in college basketball, the Final Four is also an incredible melting pot for fun, humanizing and quirky moments among players coaches and fans. It's also the ultimate landing spot for little stories that have built there way up to the national stage throughout the month of March.

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Art meets activism in Dave Loewenstein's works

Even if you don’t know who Dave Loewenstein is, it’s highly likely that you’ve come across his large-scale, community murals, which often stretch the length of the walls of Lawrence parks, schools, buildings, passageways and elsewhere. What you may not be aware of, is that there is a good chance that you’ve likewise come into contact with his small-scale work, which might be inconspicuously stuck to the side of a newspaper box or possibly wheat-pasted onto a wall.

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Theatre Lawrence bringing Johnny Cash's life story to the stage

If catching Johnny Cash in concert was on your bucket list and you never quite got around to it before his passing in 2003, Theatre Lawrence may have the tunes — 36 to be exact — to set your weary heart at ease.

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Lawrence Arts Center changing the mood of 'Wizard of Oz'

The Lawrence Arts Center's upcoming production of "The Wizard of Oz" won't change the script or music of the beloved tale, director Amanda Pintore said. However, as far as the set and many of the underlying messages, she and the cast are inviting viewers to skip arm-in-arm down a different path and on "a new adventure."

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Chef's Choice: Breaking out of the downtown box at Nagoya

It’s no secret that most often, the culinary gems of a city are typically found in the prime, downtown real estate. Zach Thompson, consultant chef for 715, agrees with such a point, but also has another message, which pretty much boils down to this: Don't overlook the strip malls.

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5 questions with 2018's Langston Hughes Award honorees

A poet whose work examines body politics and a fiction writer exploring the breakup of a family have been chosen as the winners of the 2018 Langston Hughes Awards for Creative Writing.

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Soon there will be a book that lets you play some of Lawrence's favorite songs

Most cities don't have up-to-date songbooks of all the wonderful music conceived and recorded within the confines of their city limits, but Lawrence soon will.

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Theatre Lawrence brings a relatable clan to life in "Miracle on South Division Street"

If you haven’t already completely burst at the seams from the overwhelming portions of family drama during the recent string of holiday visits, Theatre Lawrence is set to plop another large helping onto your plate with its production of Tom Dudzick’s comedy "Miracle on South Division Street," which opens Friday.

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Time-traveling activists' exploits on display at Lawrence Arts Center exhibition

The current solo exhibition under construction at the Lawrence Arts Center will feature artist Justin Marable, who’s name many will immediately recognize for his work in screen printing. However, for this show, has not focused his attention on the dynamic color gradient of the Kansas sky. Depending on one’s perspective, the skies created by the installation’s content are quite a bit gloomier, but that’s precisely the point.

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Give the gift of Lawrence art this holiday season

Maybe remembering shirt and pant sizes is not your strong suit. Or maybe you’re having second thoughts about gifting that one-of-a-kind painting of sunflowers in a vase you made after three glasses of red wine. If either of these are true, it might be helpful to remember that they don’t call Lawrence an arts town for nothing. To help you on your quest of holiday gift giving, we’ve compiled a list of Lawrence artists who might just have have what you’re looking for.

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Chef's Choice: Mediterranean flavors meet Midwestern classics at Culinaria

When Taco Zone owner Brad Shanks opted for visiting Culinaria for this month’s Chef’s Choice, he explained that his affinity for the catering service and Mediterranean restaurant is twofold.

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Theatre Lawrence's 'Beauty and the Beast' a labor of love for set designer, costumer

If you ask costumer Jane Pennington or set designer James Diemer, the most important reviews for the Theatre Lawrence production of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” won’t come from a grizzled theater critic. They’re much more concerned about the younger members of the audience — particularly the ones who have seen the movie three dozen times and who have practically memorized every stitch of Belle’s gold dress.

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A look at the 2017 Phoenix Award winners — through the eyes of those who nominated them

For the 22nd year, the city of Lawrence and the Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission will present Phoenix Awards to several local artists who have demonstrated exceptional achievement in their field or in promotion of the arts and arts education in Lawrence. The awards ceremony will be today at 2 p.m. at the Lawrence Arts Center. Here’s a look at the 2017 award recipients — through the eyes of those who nominated them.

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Renowned Lawrence sculptor Kris Kuksi releases new book

If you just looked at the floor of artist Kris Kuksi’s North Lawrence studio, the sight provides a pretty clear vision of the kind of disorder an energetic child could create if left unattended for hours. Action figurines lie next to toy motorcycle parts while a disassembled space craft, a toy machine gun and the vertebrae from a miniature skeleton congregate near the steeple of a model church. Although the studio is dusty and somewhat chaotic, all of the disarray comes to a halt when you set your eyes on his sculptures, which are pristinely and meticulously crafted as evidenced by his new book Conquest, which was released in early October.

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Your guide to finding fun on the farm picking pumpkins

If getting your winter boots a little dusty isn’t quite your thing, a nearby grocery store might be the place for you as far as perusing this year’s pumpkins. But if you want to catch a wagon ride, drink some hot cider or momentarily entertain your kids’ fantasies of bringing home a 70-pound behemoth, then the intersection of North 1500 and East 1850 roads is ground zero for the Douglas County pumpkin experience.

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Chef's Choice: Limestone's mushroom pizza is 'go-to' for Ramen Bowls owners

Pretty much the moment a server at a restaurant asks if I’d like to hear about the specials, I nod but usually drift off to a place where words just become sounds that don’t matter. I’m not trying to be impolite, I just have favorite menu items that I really look forward to everywhere I go. So, when Ramen Bowls and Luckyberry owners Shantel and Tim Grace told me they both order the mushroom pizza at Limestone, always, I knew I was in good company.

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As Halloween nears, stained-glass artist's works take on a darker tone

Artist John Niswonger’s stained-glass hawk feathers would look nice in just about any window and might even make a nice gift for a loved one. But here’s guessing that your grandmother would not react the same way if she were to unwrap his one hundred-piece homage to the 1970s low-budget, horror movie The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

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Exhibition of Native American nude paintings hopes to 'tear down' a cultural taboo

Among the upcoming Final Friday exhibitions is a show at the Phoenix Underground, which artist and organizer Brent Learned is sure will offer a unique experience not only in subject matter, but also in its assemblage.

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Musical adaptation of Hanks, DiCaprio film to make debut at Theatre Lawrence

For its opening act of the 2017-2018 season, Theatre Lawrence will present the musical Catch Me If You Can, which director Ric Averill explains goes much deeper than a simple tale of cat and mouse.

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Chef's Choice: Fried chicken from an unexpected source

Just when you thought you’d finished that 800-page novel on fried chicken restaurants in Lawrence, Reagan Petrehn, co-owner of 1900 Barker Cafe and Bakery, decided to write a new page with a visit to an unexpected restaurant. This month for Chef's Choice, we travel to Hank Charcuterie, for — yes — fried chicken.

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Monuments of a different type honor civil rights heroes at Lawrence exhibition

As bronze statues of Confederate figures are creating national controversy, there's hope that a Lawrence exhibition featuring quilts and textiles of civil rights heroes will bring people together.

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Chef's Choice: Pho with Lee Meisel

For this month’s edition of Chef’s Choice, Lee Meisel of Leeway Franks decided that Little Saigon Cafe was his spot for pho. Perhaps that's because Little Saigon owners Steve and Anna Nguyen have mastered the classic Vietnamese dish to the same degree that Meisel has mastered sausages and frankfurters.

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Artist Anson DeOrnery makes viewers a part of his work

Not many artists readily admit that their set intention with their work is to disappoint the viewer. Anson DeOrnery, who goes by the artist name Anson The Ornery, on the other hand, has a show at the Lawrence Arts Center titled Deluge, which is, well, kind of a bummer the more it is explored. According to the artist, that’s precisely the point.

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How a little sweat equity can earn you a bicycle

You know that old junker of a bike that’s been sitting in your garage? The one with all the spiders on it that has two flat tires with punctured tubes and an unattached, rusty chain that’s leaving a stain on the concrete? That’s the one. Now imagine 60 of those in your garage or basement.

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Chef's Choice: La Estrella and 'the perfect taco'

Some might call it serendipitous that Ladybird Diner owner Meg Heriford found her favorite taco in town while searching for a few staples for her restaurant. What’s most likely, however, is that she was lured just a little off the beaten path by a star, shining brightly, even in broad daylight.

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Retired Lawrence police officer dives deeper into acting with film being shown at Free State Festival

It’s possible that the 27 years he spent with the Lawrence Police Department served Paul Fellers well when it came to sniffing out acting roles. In the twilight of his career with the LPD, Fellers began moonlighting as an actor and was cast in two different roles, which must have seemed like natural fits.

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29th Outdoor Downtown Sculpture Exhibition kicks off this week

For this year’s Outdoor Downtown Sculpture Exhibition, Lawrence residents and visitors will be treated to works by some familiar names such as Kate Dineen and John Rasmussen, but also ODSE first-timers like Alicia Kelly.

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A Chef's Choice tour at Bon Bon! and a healthy dose of 'buns'

For this month’s edition of Chef’s Choice, T.K. Peterson, owner/chef of Merchants Pub and Plate decided that traveling to the “Far East” was a must for eating Katsu Buns. Happy to oblige, I booked my travel, packed my bags and journeyed to far East Lawrence, to eat my “Bunz” off at Bon Bon!.

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'The Music Man' comes to town

For Charlie Goolsby, Friday’s opening of "The Music Man" at Theatre Lawrence will be his third time directing the musical, which he says brings him back to his childhood watching the American classics on late-night television.

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Chef's Choice: A Chicago dog with Chef Rick Martin

For the first installment of Chef’s Choice, I met with chef-owner Rick Martin of Limestone Pizza, 814 Massachusetts St., and invited him to a lunch at any restaurant in town other than his own. His choice: the Chicago dog at Leeway Franks.

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KU professor awarded Guggenheim Fellowship for family photo project

For many attuned to the Kansas art scene, the name Daniel Coburn might recall beautiful black and white images of sweeping Kansas landscapes with not-so-subtle indications of the human impact on our environment. Although Coburn has certainly received recognition for his portrayals of nature’s complex relationship with humans, he was recently awarded a 2017 Guggenheim Fellowship for his work that has involved rotating his lens 180 degrees and turning his attention to another complexity, his own family history.

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First-time filmmaker's work to debut at Liberty Hall this week

Lawrence resident Kalee Forsythe says she wants to be a writer/director “more than anything in the world,” but unlike Sara, the lead female role in her film “E 1200,” Forsythe didn’t have to get a $5,000 loan from a sadistic drug dealer named Alice to make it all happen. But, she did need $5,000 to get the dream off the ground. She got it through the slightly less stressful method of an Indiegogo campaign.

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KU Distinguished Alumnus to give jazz tribute to Langston Hughes

For many in town, the name Ron McCurdy might be linked with fond memories of trumpets and tubas blasting over the triumphs of Danny Manning and Larry Brown while McCurdy served as director of the Kansas Basketball Band in the late 80s. It’s possible that KU music majors may have recorded jazz pieces within a Murphy Hall studio named after McCurdy, where he once served as the first director of Jazz Studies. For everyone else stateside and far flung around the globe, McCurdy, a KU Distinguished Alumni, is best known for creating the Langston Hughes Project, which he has performed internationally and which he will be bringing back to KU during a performance on April 7 in Swarthout Recital Hall.

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Behind the scenes at Lawrence's Fight Club

If you hear the name Lawrence Fight Club, you’re probably picturing a dingy and damp basement in some old building on Mass Street with fluorescent lights flickering from the ceiling. Down below a circle of spectators surrounds two shirtless dudes who are pulverizing each other.

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6 restaurants in 2 hours? Journal-World staffers take a chicken challenge

If you’ve kept up with Chad Lawhorn’s Town Talk and you’re anything like me, you’re probably wondering exactly what the cluck is going on with all of these fried chicken joints popping up around town. To further investigate the allure, as every journalist should, I enlisted the help of sports editor Tom Keegan and the fried chicken oracle of Lawrence himself, Chad Lawhorn, to eat at all of them.

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Lawrence musicians making commercial music heard all over the world

If the names Sam and Dan Billen ring a bell, it might be that you heard their music while popping around the Lawrence music scene at The Bottleneck or Jackpot Saloon in the early- to mid-2000s. But you’ve likely heard their music and not known it — and it may even have caused you to grab your wallet.

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Residents share their wildly unpopular and totally nonpolitical opinions

Give us your wildly unpopular, nonpolitical opinions.

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A process revealed: Arts Center exhibit gives glimpse into photojournalism

A current exhibit at the Lawrence Arts Center, featuring works by Mike Yoder and Richard Gwin, two photographers with well over a half-century’s worth of combined years at the Lawrence Journal-World, aims to bring forth the hidden process. By presenting prints of contact sheets while on assignment, and photos selected after being pushed through the various channels of editing, “the work” is made visible.

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Pageant contestant has unique and colorful talent

In 90 seconds, most people could probably fry an egg on a preheated pan, fill up an empty tank of gas on a compact car or peel and cut up an apple with fingers fully intact. Most people, however, could not produce a large-scale painting of anything remotely recognizable before an audience while wearing high heels.

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65 colorful characters in Lawrence artist John Sebelius' upcoming show

It would be pretty difficult to forget meeting a anyone with a name like Gizmo Joe, or Mothman or Pat the Hat from Slab City, California. A pinky-ringed cabbie from Jersey named Al? Fahgettaboudit! For Lawrence artist John Sebelius, the memories of these four and 61 others certainly haven’t faded, as he has recorded them in great, colorful detail for his upcoming show, Cupcakes, which opens at Phoenix Gallery for Final Fridays on Nov. 26.

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New book aims for a clearer look at Phog Allen

Most Kansas basketball fans can recall from memory the classic photo of the game’s creator James Naismith standing proudly on the left with the coach Phog Allen to his right. The two figures of basketball royalty are both wearing fedoras and the only thing stopping them from holding hands is a basketball that they hold together. The image portrays the two as allies and collaborators in lock step, cradling the game in its fledgling years. But a new book on Phog Allen suggests reality wasn't nearly as picturesque.

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'Pinnacle of Nuttiness' — Political state of affairs a dominating theme this Final Friday

If going downtown to unwind and unplug yourself from the presidential election, the talking heads and hot-button political issues is on your agenda for the upcoming Final Fridays, let this serve as a warning to steer clear of several works of art.

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Whether you call her Cheese Whiz or Big Cheese, Lawrence resident now in most exclusive of cheese clubs

After waiting for six weeks, on Sept. 2, Knickerbocker, who heads the Murray’s Cheese Shop at the Dillons at 4701 W. Sixth St., said that she received word that she had passed the three-hour, 150-question Certified Cheese Professional exam.

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Are you a Cheese Whiz? Answers to the quiz

Answers to the cheese quiz.

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Art between friends: Lawrence artists collaborate despite 1,000-mile separation

Two Lawrence friends, Adam Smith and Adam Lott have collaborated on a Final Fridays show despite having more than a thousand miles between them.

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