Brian’s picks – January 5

The Columbus Area Arts Council stepped into a more serious form of edutainment, if you will, a few years ago when it began coordinating an annual dramatic presentation on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Given the post-election stories about increasing racial tensions locally in the schools and elsewhere that we have heard and reported about, the free presentation of the Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati’s performance of “Martin’s Dream” could be one of the most important events this winter. The show, offered complete with a student study guide sheet, will be at 2 p.m. Jan. 16 at The Commons, 300 Washington St. in Columbus. Information: 812-376-2539 or

If you’re hardly a techie and want to save yourself a real gadget-induced migraine, Drop-In For Digital Help can compute. The free program will run Monday through Friday at the Bartholomew County Public Library, 536 Fifth St. in Columbus. During regular hours, the library’s high-tech helpers will assist visitors with phones, tablets, Kindles, etc., and help get them started with the library’s free resources for eBooks, movies, music and more at the special digital desk. Information: 812-379-1266 and

You and the kids or grandkids can have a swinging time at Old National Bank’s First Fridays For Families free presentation of “Monkey See, Monkey Do” at 6 p.m. Friday at The Commons, 300 Washington St. in Columbus. Madcap Puppets of Cincinnati, Ohio, a regular visitor over the years to First Fridays, will present the sometimes-comic “Monkey See, Monkey Do” about a group of monkeys exploring a new zoo. Information: 812-376-2539 or

Even if the weather outside is frightful, or even just a bit on the chilly side, remember that the surroundings inside FairOaks Mall for the Columbus City Winter Farmers Market seem as warm as a comfortable spring day. The market, open 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on the west end of the mall, 2380 25th St., features about 20 vendors with meats, produce, hand-made soaps, desserts, woodworking, pottery and more.

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Brian Blair is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at or 812-379-5672.