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    Cutting-Edge, Arts-Oriented LB Neighborhood Businesses Readying Tonight's "First Fridays" Event In Bixby Knolls

    (May 4, 2007) -- A group of creative, cutting-edge LB neighborhood businesses and residents are readying tonight's (May 4) "First Fridays" event in Bixby Knolls, the latest in a series of locally created monthly arts events welcoming visitors from the neighborhood, citywide and beyond.

    Declaring their goal of "building community through the arts" -- and without visible assistance from City Hall's taxpayer-subsidized "arts" sources, a number of arts-oriented Bixby Knolls businesses created the monthly events themselves and "First Fridays" was born...and has grown.

    Tonight along Atlantic Avenue, there'll be live music, painters, sculptors, open mic, martini bar enjoyment and more.

  • Chroma Glass Designs (4242 Atlantic Ave): Free reception 7:00-10:00 p.m., open to all, for artists presenting new and original works of art. says:

    Featured artists are painter George Marshall whose artworks are primarily expressions of color. Out of the interplay of the qualities of color, light and dark, warm and cool, harmony and dissonance, movement comes into being. Movement, in its restless struggle, coalesces into form. It’s an evolution analogous to music. The attempt has been made to paint a visual music.

    1st Fri Rin May 07Rin Colabucci is a painter whose work is the result of discerning the necessity and unnecessary, transformation of the unconsciousness to the consciousness.

    [Digital image, right, provided by Chroma Glass Designs]

    John Michael Shipman, a sculptor, deals with developing surface contours and edges that interact and flow around, through and into each other. His works are carved abstract forms, for which he coins sometimes-whimsical titles as the forms develop and start to resemble recognizable images—much like visualizing elephants or dragons in cloud formations.

    And the artwork will remain on display through the month of May.

  • Jennifer Corday May 07Nino's Italian Ristorante (3853 Atlantic Ave.): Presents award-winning singer, songwriter, Jennifer Corday ( from 9-11 p.m. First Friday's business host Carina Cristiano Leoni says Ms. Corday "is poised to launch her fourth studio album, "Superhero" this summer" and will present an "intimiate acoustic performance."

    Also appearing is LB artist Jamie Kivisto from 8-11 p.m. ( showcasing her Superhero series, showing several pieces to be featured in the Superhero CD.

    Nino's is also featuring a new Three Olives Martini Bar (21 and older, please) on this First Friday's event. "We're thrilled to be working with Three Olives Vodka...These martini blends are exceptional. The pomegranate and amaretto is so smooth to drink! The Blue Grotto is as beautiful in color as it is in taste. The Dino Martini reminds me of my summer months in Napoli (my father's hometown in Italy) where you see watermelon juice stands everywhere." There'll be a lite menu with appetizers, ˝ pasta dishes and desserts for dining alongside traditional Italian cuisine all served in a Retro style bar. Restaurant dining from 4:00-11:00 p.m.

  • The Long Beach Shakespeare Company (4250 Atlantic Avenue): Opening Night May 4th for Shakespeare’s Richard III (runs until June 16). 6:00-8:00 p.m.: Lobby Entertainment & Artwork Display. 8:00 p.m. showing, Thursday - Saturday. 2 p.m. showing, Sunday. $15 general admission, $10 students. Box Office (562) 997-1494.

  • Four Olives Café (4278 Atlantic Ave.): Artist, Don deLew -- acrylics on canvas. Dining hours 4:00-10:00 p.m. with pre theater dining. $2.00 off admission price for theater. 10% off pre-theater dining, upon request

  • 2000 Plus Bookstore (4270 Atlantic) soon to be renamed Shore Books (name is changing; they have another location on 2nd Street in Belmont Shore): Features progressive books and literature, history & culture and children's reading materials together with Long Beach Unified School District's reading list. (562) 424-5052. ( and

  • It's a Grind Coffee House (4245 Atlantic Ave.): Live Music, 8:00-10:00 p.m. every Friday and Saturday

  • Mirage Coffee House & Cusine (539 Bixby Road): Open Mic Night (Music), 8:00-10:00 p.m.

    Ms. Cristiano Leoni said in a release, "This is just the beginning to fantastic art shows, cuisine and fun in the Bixby Knolls area. I'm really excited to be a part of this great movement to build our community through the arts!"

    Echoing her enthusiasm is 8th district Councilwoman Rae Gabelich who said in a release, "This is the most exciting opportunity for the Bixby Knolls neighborhoods and businesses. This new experience hasn't been available in this part of the city since the 1970's. First Fridays is a new and vibrant energy shared through the arts."

    What: "First Friday's LB -- Building Community Through The Arts"
    When: Tonight, May 4
    Where: Multiple venues 3800-4200 blocks, Bixby Knolls

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