A&E Digest: Palo Alto Art Commission works on master plan and more

This week's A&E news

Palo Alto's Public Art Commission works to develop a master plan, the Aquarius Theatre prepares to reopen and more.

PUBLIC ART PLANNING ... Palo Alto's Public Art Commission has launched a year-long project to develop a master plan, the first of its kind for Palo Alto. The new master plan will clarify the city's goals for public art over the next five to 10 years, commission new public art projects, identify sources of funding and outline strategies for community engagement. Last week, consultants met with community members to solicit public input, and held an artists' focus group to hear from members of the arts community. The next public meeting will be 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 10, and will tentatively be held at the Downtown Library, 270 Forest Ave. The final draft of the master plan is scheduled to be completed by March 2016.

AQUARIUS THEATRE REOPENS ... After three months of renovation, Palo Alto's Aquarius Theatre, 430 Emerson St., will reopen on Friday, July 24. Built in 1969 and operated by Landmark Theatres since 1985, the refurbished space now features a new marquee, larger screens, leather seats and recliners, new lighting and an expanded concession menu including specialty treats like sweet potato fries and smoked Gouda macaroni-and-cheese bites. The public is invited to a free open house, 6:30-9 p.m. on Thursday, July 23, when the Marx Brothers' "Duck Soup" will also screen. In celebration of the reopening, admission to all movies on opening weekend -- Friday, July 24 through Sunday, July 26 -- includes free popcorn.

STANFORD HOSTS ARTS TOURS ... With a burgeoning arts district including the recently built Anderson Collection of modern art and the McMurtry Building for the history and practice of art due to open this fall, Stanford University has begun a new tradition: campus tours focused specifically on the arts. The free, hour-long Humanities and Arts Tour introduces small groups of visitors to the university's newest arts facilities as well as Bing Concert Hall, the Cantor Arts Center and the famous Rodin Sculpture Garden. The tour also encompasses academic departments including English, Philosophy, History and Classics. Online reservations are recommended. Go to visit.stanford.edu.

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Short story writers wanted!

The 33rd Annual Palo Alto Weekly Short Story Contest is now accepting entries for Adult, Young Adult (15-17) and Teen (12-14) categories. Send us your short story (2,500 words or less) and entry form by March 29. First, Second and Third Place prizes awarded in each category.

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