There used to be a two-hour rule with well-known celebrities during the ’50s and ’60s. They could go anywhere they wanted, so long as it was within two hours of Los Angeles. Pushing the distance to a limit, these celebs would travel to Palm Springs and Cathedral City (aka “Cat City”) to escape the hustle and bustle of urban life. The desert community has more than embraced its heritage as a getaway for famous actors and musicians. It’s not just for bragging rights though, Film4Change will present this year’s AMFM Fest as a large celebration of arts, music and film entertainment. Plenty of short films will be shown, including a modern-day interpretation of Donnie Brasco and a 20-year celebration of Dazed and Confused. Check out tunes from the likes of the Miracles Dolls punk band and even our own previously featured Band of the Week, DJ Alf Alpha. Tie it all together with some meaningful poetry, a vendor and exhibit fair and plenty of educational panels for those up-and-comers. You can bet that despite the two-hour rule there will be some celebrities here which includes Viggo Mortensen, this year’s winner of the Dennis Lee Hopper Award. The award recognizes that, as Hopper believed, to be an artist one must participate in all forms of art. Mortensen’s collection of paintings, poetry, photography and a documentary he appears in will all be available for exhibition.
Thurs, June 13-Sun, June 16. $5-$199. Ultra Mary Pickford Theater, 36-850 Pickfair St., Cathedral City, (760) 328-7100; www.amfmfest.com.
Kick off father’s day weekend with a great American, family friendly event. Everyone will enjoy the live music and Hotrod Huck’s cruising antique and classic car show that’ll satisfy the city slickers. For those that prefer a more traditional Finn, the fishin’ derbies, arm wrestling, river raft building and cow chip throwin’s where you’ll want to be. These plus many more Huckleberry inspired adventures await.
Thru June 16. $25. Cucamonga-Guasti Regional Park, 800 N. Archibald Ave., Rancho Cucamonga, (909) 941-6920; www.huckfinn.com.
We’ve got very few outlets for comedy here in the IE. And while we love revisiting celebrities who appear at the Ontario Improv, now’s the time for those up-and-comers to shine. In this case, it’s time for “Hello, My Name is Improv,” a group that is bringing the true essence of improvisation to the stage. Plus hey, it’s cheaper than a movie!
7pm-9pm. $6. Rialto Community Theatre, 150 E. San Bernardino Ave., Rialto, (909) 873-8514.
Kevin Smith once played a character of silence but since then he’s acquired quite a voice through various podcasts and is revered as a staple comic-book aficionado (especially after the airing of his show Comic Book Men). In this one-night, stand-up special Smith takes you on a journey into the life of his buddy Bryan Johnson (aka “Beard Guy.”)
7pm. $25. Ontario Improv, 4555 Mills Cir., Ontario, (909) 484-5411; ontario.improv.com.
Butterflies have long been seen as a beautiful insect (most other bugs are labeled as creepy to most). Check out these local flutterers and explore the many species that roam our landscape. Kids can learn about how caterpillars pupate into butterflies but don’t be afraid to be an adult who simply appreciates the complexities of nature.
Thru July 28. Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, 1500 N. College Ave., Claremont, (909) 625-8767; www.rsabg.org.
Two stories dedicated to a place I hope you never have to experience are on display: jail. Sandow Birk paints the desolate desert prisons of California from afar with “Prisonation” while Richard Ross and Alyse Emdur give you an intimate inmate look from inside the “Architecture of Authority.” Even see 100 years of Guantanamo Bay history and discuss the limits of democracy.
Thru Sept. 27. Gallery hours: Tues-Sat, 12pm-5pm. UCR/California Museum of Photography, 3824 Main St., Riverside, (951) 784-3686; www.cmp.ucr.edu.
Sitting on a patio enjoying a cold, refreshing beer and listening to some tunes is the perfect way to spend a night. Move that scenario to a patio filled with fresh Hanger 24 on tap and life gets a little better. Get a traditional brew or try the Belgium Summer Ale or Essence on draft. Kid Gramophone will provide the live indie beats for the night.
6:30pm-9:30pm. Hangar 24 Brewery, 1710 Sessums Dr., Redlands, (909) 398-1400; www.hangar24brewery.com.