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Four For The Fourth

By Marcus Gilmer in Arts & Entertainment on Jul 3, 2008 4:45PM

2008_07_03_fourth.jpgSure, there are the fireworks on the lakefront and the Taste of Chicago is still going strong, but if you're like us, you want to seek out something to do with your Fourth that's a little less crowded. So if milling around shoulder-to-shoulder with tens of thousands of strangers isn't your bag, here's a quick list of other things that might prove to be some good post-grilling entertainment for your America Day.

Subterranean is hosting one hell of a benefit for the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. There will be performances by The Sound Conspiracy, Million $ Mano, LA Jesus, Capcom, Hey Champ DJs, and Marco Morales, as well as videos by MF Chicago. Hilary Rawk hosts.
Freedom: Fuck Yeah, 9 p.m. - 2 a.m., Subterranean, 2011 W. North Ave, $8

In the mood to celebrate one of America's literary icons? New film Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson opens Friday at Landmark's Century Centre. Alex Gibney's documentary celebrates the life and work of a writer who managed to capture America like no other. And if you're more in the mood for some reading, we recommend Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72. It proves a compelling read as we head into this historic election.
Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, 11:00-2:10-4:45-7:30-10:15, Landmark's Century Centre, 2828 N. Clark St.

If you're in a fest mood but feel like skipping the Taste, try the African-Caribbean International Festival of Life happening all weekend down at Washington Park. Great food and drink are abundant, but the musical entertainment is pretty exciting as well. Friday's performers include Lady Margaret, Hydro Band, Maureen Brown, Soul Tempo, and international reggae superstar Beenie Man.
African-Caribbean International Festival of Life, 10 a.m - 10 p.m., Washington Park, Adults: $10 before 5 p.m., $15 after, Seniors and children (7 years to 11): $5, Children under 7 years: Free

Nothing screams "independence" quite like dressing up in anime costumes, so if that's your thing, head over to Darkroom for Chicago Suicide Club's J-Pop Night. There will be DJ sets from Chinkasu, Lance Milk, and Le Sprite. Wearing a costume - "Cosplay, Anime, J-School Girl, etc" - gets you in for free, and there will even be free sushi from 9 p.m. until 10 p.m. if grilling ain't your thing.
J-Pop Night, 9 p.m. - 2 a.m., Darkroom, 2210 W. Chicago Ave., $5 after 11 p.m.; no cover charge with appropriate costume