Events for May 15-21, 2003

THU 5/15Run, kids! Run as fast as you can! Bombardment League begins at Carver Ranches Park (4750 SW 21st St., Hollywood) at 6:30 p.m. today. Anyone who remembers grade-school P.E. class knows what the Bombardment League is about: in a phrase, dodge ball. This scourge upon the youth of our nation -- or at least upon uncoordinated or overweight youth -- has been a bane of childhood for generations. Happily, in league play, children ages 10 to 13 are watched carefully to ensure that no one gets seriously tagged, which is a good thing. Perhaps the next generation will not be plagued with recurring nightmares of being chased down by laughing children with red rubber balls. Not that we know anything about that. Registration required. Games will be held every Tuesday and Thursday through June 12. Call 954-985-1990.

FRI 5/16While he may be the son of legendary jazz-fusion guitarist Larry Coryell, Murali Coryellis no chip off the old C chord. Instead, the 33-year-old guitarist has taken a liking to blues and soul, though he and his fans are quick to avoid labeling him. That seems a wise move, for although those two genres cover the lion's share of Coryell's oeuvre, each of his albums includes a melange of source material. The singer, songwriter, guitarist, producer, and record-label owner's latest effort, this year's Strong as I Need to Be, is as varied as his past work, though still entrenched primarily in the blues. Two shows this week reveal to the curious just how much Coryell is capable of -- tonight at Musicians Exchange at One Night Stan's (2333 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 954-929-1566) and Saturday at the Bamboo Room (25 S. "J" St., Lake Worth, 561-585-2583).

SAT 5/17Hialeah's finest takes the stage at the Factory (2674 E. Oakland Park Blvd., Fort Lauderdale) tonight when Humbert performs, along with Front Row Centerand the Avenging Lawnmowers of Justice. Scenesters may remember that, despite the frequent live covers of "Come On Get Happy," the Lawnmowers reportedly weren't; they broke up several months ago following scheduling conflicts at a disorganized Culture Room show. And yet, the Lawnmowers are back, offering their brand of good-time pop-rock (and their undeniably cool name). Meanwhile, Humbert, despite consistently being tagged as the local version of Weezer, continues to break out in new directions under dreadlocked frontman Fernie. The band hasn't broken out the accordion lately, but we're waiting with bated breath. Call 954-566-6331.

SUN 5/18Phil Ochs, who famously hanged himself in 1976, always endured the shadow of Bob Dylan. Both were folk singer/songwriters who first gained fame in the coffeehouses of New York City in the early 1960s. Both wrote about serious social issues, especially the Vietnam War. One thing that puts Ochs above Dylan in that regard, though, is his unwillingness to diverge from a social message. He remained a consistently leftist voice throughout his career. As a result, he gave the world the best war protest songs of the era -- "Draft Dodger Rag," "I Ain't Marching Any More," and "Love Me, I'm a Liberal," which revealed the view of the early, optimistic Ochs. Songs such as "Pretty Smart on My Part" (sung from the view of a far-right wingnut who celebrates presidential assassination) and "I Kill Therefore I Am" (this time from the point of view of a ruthless, brutal cop) showed how Ochs' assessment of reality turned grim later in the 1960s. Whichever era you prefer (and Ochs fans spend hours debating this), the Unitarian Universalist Church (3970 NW 21st Ave., Fort Lauderdale) presents a Phil Ochs Song Night at 8 p.m., featuring folkies singing their favorite Ochs' tunes. Though it's the first time the event has been held here, it continues a tradition that started in NYC in 1983. Admission is a $15 suggested donation. Call 954-484-6734.

MON 5/19What with the whole canine-clothing craze, a lot of people probably wish dogs would just go back to being, ya know, dogs. North Broward Park (4400 NE 18th Ave., Pompano Beach) offers a four-week puppy kindergarten class for mutts five months and younger. The pups can learn the basics of sitting, staying, and fetching. The park also offers an eight-week household obedience class. No word on whether the puppies get a diploma after graduating. Hmm.... but wouldn't they look cute wearing a little cap and gown? Aww, or maybe just a hat -- like a beret -- to let everyone know they're cultured. Mondays at 6:15 p.m., $55 for four weeks. Household obedience class, for the older set, starts at 7:45 p.m. and is $80 for eight weeks. Preregistration is required. Call 954-786-2195.

TUE 5/20Be like the boys at NASA! No, we certainly are not referring to those connected with the recent shuttle disintegration. We're talking about the upcoming Mars expedition. Now you too can get in on all the action surrounding the red planet. The South Florida Science Museum's (4801 Dreher Trl. N., West Palm Beach) planetarium opened Destination Mars! on May 2, and the show goes on daily at 1 p.m. Learn once and for all whether there's life on Mars (no), whether there once was (maybe), and whether there could be again (no). Admission is $7, or $5 for children ages 3 to 17. Planetarium shows cost $2 per person. Call 561-832-1988. (DS)

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