By Chip Chandler — Producer
Here's a quick take on your 10 best entertainment bets in the next 10 days.
1. Amarillo Sod Poodles
The Soddies return to town for a long home stand — playing the Springfield Cardinals through May 3, then the Arkansas Travelers May 5 to 7. Also on tap: The Amarillo Bulls could have a playoff game against the Shreveport Mudbugs on May 5 in the Amarillo Civic Center Coliseum (if the series extends that far), the FC Amarillo Bombers will continue its season with a 6 p.m. May 4 game against FC West Texas Rumbleweeds in the coliseum, and the Amarillo Venom will back in action at 6 p.m. May 11 against Salina Liberty, also in the coliseum.
2. Heathers: The Musical
After a sold-out opening weekend, TheatreAC will offer four more performances of this stage adaptation of the cult classic: 7:30 p.m. May 2 to 4 and 3 p.m. May 5 in the Amarillo College Experimental Theatre. Plus, Amarillo Little Theatre's staging of Mamma Mia opens with a sold-out weekend May 2 to 4 before continuing weekends through May 19. If you're having trouble getting tickets, ALT just added a 2:30 p.m. May 11 matinee performance.
3. Cinco de Mayo Fajita Festival
Get a head start on the Cinco celebrations with sizzling Mexican food and music from DJ Kane, Ram Herrera and Savannah V. at this annual Amarillo Hispanic Chamber of Commerce party at 5 p.m. May 3 at Starlight Ranch Event Center.
4. May the Fourth
Star Wars fans have plenty of ways to celebrate the space opera on this punny pseudo holiday: a day-long celebration at Don Harrington Discovery Center, film screenings from noon to 11 p.m. at Long Wooden Spoon Brewing, and Amarillo Sod Poodles's Star Wars Night with special food, merchandise and promotions. Plus, for the geek-inclined, May 4 is Free Comic Book Day, with goodies available at select stores.
Panhandle PBS will host an Indie Lens Pop-Up screening of this acclaimed documentary about high school athletes at 6:30 p.m. May 6 in the Caprock High School Auditorium, following a demonstration match by the Caprock wrestlers. Also of note: a 7:30 p.m. May 6 screening of the documentary The River and the Wall by Amarillo native Ben Masters at Premiere Cinemas Westgate Mall 6. Wide releases include action-adventure film El Chicano, romantic comedy Long Shot, thriller The Intruder and animated comedy UglyDolls on May 3, then con-artist comedy The Hustle, live-action/CGI blend Pokémon Detective Pikachu and comedy Poms on May 10. Special engagements include the 1989 Batman on May 4 and Batman Returns on May 6 (part of a series of encore screenings in honor of the character's 80th anniversary); a TCM Big Screen Classics 50th anniversary screening of True Grit on May 5 and 8; Christian comedian Chonda Pierce's Unashamed on May 7 and 9; and an advance screening of Tolkien with a live-streamed Q&A on May 7.
6. Amarillo ArtsFest
Arts in the Sunset will celebrate a broad range of artistic endeavors at this new festival running May 10 to 12, including the Texas Women Artists exhibition, film screenings, live music, kids' crafts, a Mother's Day brunch and more.
7. Yellow City Comic Con
Celebrate pop culture May 10 to 12 in the Amarillo Civic Center Complex, featuring comic books, anime, panel discussions, gaming and more. Look for appearances by celebrities Dante Basco (Hook), Nicholas Brendan (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Denise Crosby (Star Trek: The Next Generation), Sean Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Sam J. Jones (Flash Gordon).
8. Canadian River Music Festival
Enjoy a day full of Texas country, Americana and Red Dirt on May 11 in Canadian, featuring Robert Earl Keen, Marty Stuart, The Great Divide, Bonnie Bishop, JD McPherson, John Fullbright and Comanche Moon.
9. Musica Variada
Amarillo Opera will celebrate Hispanic culture with a food festival and concert featuring Mariachi Los Matadores de Texas Tech and Rafael Moras on May 11 in the Globe-News Center for the Performing Arts.
10. Shotgun Rider
The Amarillo-born country band will come home for a May 11 show at Starlight Ranch Event Center. Other concerts of note: Shane Smith & The Saints on May 4 and Fleetwood Mac tribute act Forever Mac on May 10 at Starlight Ranch; Charlie Shafter on May 4 at Hoots Pub; Cody Jasper on May 4 at Golden Light Cantina; Texas Hippie Coalition on May 5 at Leftwood's; and The RagTown Chiefs on May 10 at Golden Light Cantina.