How to get a free show with dinner

New this year is "Starvin Artists" open-mike night at the Sun Dog Cafe at Mongoose. 

It’s not really a cafe, or even a place – it’s a bunch of tables set on the patio and walkway of the shopping arcade.  There’s a cute little bar (‘manned’ by Stephanie last night) and about a dozen tables.  Starting at 7 p.m. Mark ("Don’t ask me to play Jimmy Buffett or Kenny Chesney songs AGAIN!) Wallace begins playing, and at about 8 p.m, he MC’s amateur hour.

Sure, a few guys thought that they sang better than they did (must have been the
Margaritas.)  But then our waitress did a couple of country songs, several of which she wrote, and sounded positively Crystal Sundogcafe_markGayle-country.  The daughter of the St. John Sun-Times publishers enthusiastically recited a poem while she swing her jump rope.  Then Stephanie picked up a guitar, and although sheSundogcafe_her_1 professed she doesn’t do this sort of thing often, she brought down the clear nighttime sky with some strong strumming and great lyrics.  To top it off, a guy gets up from a table and does a few harmonica licks between choruses.

Sun Dog’s mid-week business builder is a great idea, and a lot of fun.  (Sorry for the quality of the photos … they’re off the phone.)

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