Plenty to do this week

Published: Monday, June 1, 2009 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, May 31, 2009 at 8:32 p.m.

All it took to pull off the biggest musical in Hippodrome history was a quiet Brahman bull, a water tank and, oh yes, some of the most rollicking performances and tongue-in-cheek humor that ever sent a Gainesville crowd into hysterics. Today, the Hipp refers to the 2006 run of "The Great American Trailer Park Musical" as a record-setting event when "21,000 people crowded into a trailer in downtown Gainesville."

Starting Friday (and in previews Wednesday and Thursday), the trailer is back in business again as the musical set in Starke returns with several members of the original cast, including Kelly Atkins as "stripper on the run" Pippi and Mark Chambers as toll-booth collector Norbert.

"The Great American Trailer Park Musical": Reduced-price previews 7 p.m. Wednesday, 8 p.m. Thursday, opens 8 p.m. Friday and runs through July 19, Hippodrome State Theatre. Tickets: $12-$30. (375-HIPP)

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Bo Diddley's Plaza

Exactly a year ago Tuesday, Bo Diddley died at his home near Archer - ending one of the most original and influential careers in music history. On Friday, the official renaming ceremony of Gainesville's Downtown Community Plaza will have Alachua County Commissioner Rodney Long and Gainesville Mayor Pegeen Hanrahan on hand to unveil a large painting on the stage wall of the amphitheater. And the night's musical tribute to Diddley will include family members, longtime band members and invited guest musicians.

Plaza Renaming Ceremony: 8-10 p.m. Friday, Bo Diddley Community Plaza. Free.

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Yulee Diddley Day

Area tributes to Diddley will continue on Saturday with Yulee Diddley Day in Archer honoring its most famous musical citizen as well as David Yulee, Florida's first U.S. senator and the man who spearheaded the building of the state's coast-to-coast railroad in the 1850s. Events will include a 9 a.m. parade, entertainment all day including performances by Diddley family members, and a first-ever, public exhibition of Diddley memorabilia as well as a raffle to win one of his signature Gretsch guitars.

Yulee Diddley Day: 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, downtown Archer.

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Tuesday's DVDs: "Defiance," "He's Just Not That Into You," "Revolutionary Road" and "Spring Breakdown"

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Friday's movies: "The Hangover" and "Land of the Lost"

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