Calendar for the week

thursday
august 29
Steve Gunderson: Among the many, many fascinating headlines and sound bites that came out of this month's Republican National Convention were interviews with Congressman Steve Gunderson, the only openly gay Republican congressman in U.S. history. His partner, architect Rob Morris, not only shares his life but has also helped Gunderson shape his political views. The two have collaborated on House and Home, a book that recounts Gunderson's Wisconsin upbringing, his long-time refusal to accept his sexual orientation, his reluctance to come out until several years into his successful political career, and the ups and downs of his relationship with Morris. Tonight at 8:00, Books & Books (933 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach) hosts an evening with Gunderson and Morris. Admission is free. Call 532-3222. (GC)

South Beach After Dark: Every night is a benefit this weekend as South Beach After Dark (SBAD) hosts a Labor Day weekend bash at eight dance clubs to raise funds for various AIDS organizations. Tonight the Kremlin (727 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach; 673-3150) presents "House of Heat" to benefit the People with AIDS Coalition (PWAC). Tomorrow, Twist (1057 Washington Ave.; 538-9478), Swirl (1049 Washington Ave.; 534-2060), and Hombre (925 Washington Ave.; 538-7883) offer a night of no-cover bar hopping. On Saturday the Twelfth Street Beach Club (Ocean Drive and Twelfth Street; 532-5051) hosts "Beach Ball '96," a benefit for the South Beach AIDS Project, from noon to 9:00; admission is ten dollars. The same night from 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m., Salvation (1771 West Ave.; 673-6508) hosts "Hard Labor," a Food for Life Network benefit. Then on Sunday SBAD presents "Men at Work 2," a benefit for PWAC and the Shelbourne hospice, from 6:00 to midnight at the parking lot on Collins Avenue and Thirteenth Street. Later, head over to Liquid (1439 Washington Ave.; 532-9154) for "Manwich," also a PWAC benefit, from 11:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.; admission is $20. Prices for admission vary for some club events; call ahead for details. (GC)

Kyra Belan: Local artist, mythologist, and author Kyra Belan explores spirituality, beauty, and nature from a matriarchal world view in her book Earth, Spirit, and Gender: Visual Language for the New Reality. Colorful, hyperreal images of flowers, serpents, and goddesses wrought in acrylic and colored pencil, as well as a series of "magic circles" built from rocks and other materials, are among the archetypal images Belan uses to examine the transformative powers of Mother Earth; the artist proposes an optimistic future based on an understanding of nature from a feminine and maternal viewpoint. Tonight at 8:00 at Borders Books & Music (19925 Biscayne Blvd., Aventura), Belan discusses her book and her artwork. Admission is free. Call 935-0027. (GC)

friday
august 30
The Cure: Robert Smith has had a reputation for black-clad wistfulness for nearly two decades. But he and his band actually have a lot of fun, a fact evident in the band's sixteenth album in seventeen years, Wild Mood Swings. While still pining for lost loves and lost time and ruminating over existential dilemmas, Smith finally gives free rein to his more entertainingly over-the-top fantasies -- layering loopy lyrics over decadent new wave, dwelling eternally in the Eighties while incorporating timeless touches of pschyedelia and mariachi. The Cure isn't exactly the most lively live band, but their fans are sure to flock to the Miami Arena tonight (721 NW First Ave.) when the band takes the stage at 8:00. Tickets cost $22.75 and $33. Call 530-4444. (GC)

SoBe Stomp: Get all the fun of club hopping for a fraction of the price as the Creative Alliance of Florida hosts the SoBe Stomp tonight at 7:00. Nightclub goers will meet at the Clevelander Hotel (1020 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach) for a pre-Stomp party; the group will then roam through the area visiting 25 night spots. An admission price of $25 gets you in to all clubs, plus a T-shirt and a free drink. Call 377-8008. (GC)

Rezurrect Fest: The Florida Music Association and F.A.S.T. (Florida Artists Showcasing Talent) kick off the holiday weekend with an evening of hot live music on two stages at Rezurrection Hall at Club Nu (245 22nd St., Miami Beach). Puerto Rican rock band Sol d'Menta headlines the fest; their Latin-flavored blend of funk, rap, ska, reggae, and thrash can be heard to good effect on their Polygram debut album. Also on the bill are local talents Nation of Fear, Reckless Lester and the Tumbleweeds, Hermit, Maria, Y, Mindflower, the Honeysticks (see "Music," page 81), Rene Alvarez, Doug Walker, Kelley Dolan, Shandra Renee, and Lisa "Noodles" Hayden. Showtime is 9:00; admission is seven dollars. Call 535-9016. (GC)

Fort Lauderdale Home Show: Everything you need to turn your house or apartment into a beautiful, efficient home is under one roof at the 25th annual Fort Lauderdale Home Show, taking place through Monday at the Broward County Convention Center (1950 Eisenhower Blvd., Fort Lauderdale). Displays include the automated CyberHome, a showcase of the very latest home utility, educational, and entertainment technology; a pet expo featuring Dominique LeFort and the Flying House Cats (acrobatic kitties); model rooms; and more than 600 exhibitors offering new products, services, and professional advice for remodeling, renovating, and redecorating your home. Admission is seven dollars. Show hours are 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. today through Sunday, and 11:00 to 7:00 on Monday. Call 666-5944. (GC)

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