Dude, you got a sec? Cool. Uh, well, um, I’ve been thinking, LOO-A-VUL oughta change its name to Festaville, because, uh, it seems like every other week there’s some type of an event. “What in God’s holy name are you blathering about?” I’ll tell you what man, by my estimation, I count at least 108 festivals, events, and/or parades in the city including: the recently held Thunder Over Louisville and GonzoFest, as well as upcoming Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby Celebrations and even the groovy Forecastle Festival. One event you might have overlooked is actually right in your back yard. This summer Lebowski Fest, is celebrating 15 years of exalting all things Dude, in Louisville, Kentucky on July 8th and 9th. As I wrote in March, “the term ‘dude’ is commonly agreed to refer to both genders. Most linguists contend that ‘Dudette’ is not in keeping with the parlance of our times”, so all are welcome, even amateurs. Inspired by the Coen brothers cult-film, The Big Lebowski, the two-day event is something to experience, and I wouldn’t be living up to my duties as an Ordained Dudeist Priest if I didn’t spread the Dude’s gospel.
The Festival Abides
In the fall of 2002, founding members Will Russell and Scott Shuffitt, along with fellow Achievers Bill Green and Ben Peskoe rolled out the first inaugural Lebowski Fest by procuring a cheap Louisville bowling establishment to hold the event. They began to spread the word to every: deadbeat, nihilist, stoner, fascist, avant-garde artist, accomplished goldbricker, bum, trophy-wife and stranger, they could find. Expecting a low turnout, the event actually drew over 150 people, and over the years it spread. While headquartered in Louisville, Lebowski Fest has been held in cities across our great land including: Chicago, Los Angeles, and Austin as well as international cities across Europe. Huh! I know right? I bet that “hadn’t ever occurred to you, man…er, sir!”
Day one entails an outdoor showing of the cult-classic that inspired it all, The Big Lebowski. All ages are welcome, so bring your chairs, rugs, blankets, and what-have-you. However, fair warning to the parents of all the Little Lebowski Urban Achievers out there, the movie does contain some occasional sexual humor, brief violence that some might find distrubing, mild drug references and partaking, and yes, (earmuffs) profanity. In fact, the number of “F” bombs uttered on screen clocks in at a staggering 260 times. That’s more F’s than: The Departed, Eddie Murphy’s Raw, and Good Will Hunting, but less than F***: The Documentary, Casino, and Straight Outta Compton. Music will be provided by the Chicago based band Black Bear Combo which will be lively for sure.
Day two really ties the festival together by hosting a bowling party complete with Dude-ish trivia, games, and everyone’s favorite, “I like yer style”, Lebowski-themed costume contest. To avoid looking like an amateur, do your homework, and rewatch the film before you go to familiarize yourself with the cast of characters from the main ones to the lesser knowns and such. Make your costume as creative as possible by stealing your mom’s dingy bathrobe, breaking out the paper-mÃ¢chÃ©, rocking the red spandex…far out man! Whether you’re going as: Larry Sellers, the Dude, Brandt, Walter, Jesus, or even a bowling pin, make it fun and have “a few “burgers, a few beers, a few laughs….your troubles will be over.”
Tickets went on sale this past Saturday, April 30th, and I’m not sure you realize it dude, but today is already May 2nd, so if you want to attend Lebowski Fest you might want to….well, you know. They’d love it if you came out, so unless you already agreed to critique your landlord’s dance quintet performance at Crane Jackson’s Fountain Street Theatre those two days, you should attend. Just slip your payment under the door. On second thought dude, it might be better to go online and purchase them on the Lebowski Fest website here.
Take ‘er easy.