Starvoice • 11.25.11

By Jack Fertig

CELEBRITY BIRTHDAY
Jonathan Knight turns 43 on Tuesday. As part of the boy band New Kids on the Block, Knight dominated the charts with hits like “Hangin’ Tough” and “Step By Step” in the late ’80s and early ’90s. He left the group in 1994 and admitted to having severe stage fright. He was outed in 2009 by an alleged ex-boyfriend but Knight says he has never hidden the fact that he is gay.

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THIS WEEK
The sun in Sagittarius square to Mars in Virgo cranks up mental energy but yields to dithering frenzies. Both move into semi-square to Saturn, a rude wake-up call. The right colleague helps you focus, a wrong one just makes things worse.

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SAGITTARIUS  Nov 22-Dec 20
Mother criticizes because she believes in your potential. A real grown-up can shrug it off. Or is there some truth in it? Take it or leave it, but thoughtfully. That can be a healing experience.

CAPRICORN  Dec 21-Jan 19
Running up against limits tempts you to struggle against authority. Learn to engage more thoughtfully. Be respectful, but don’t be afraid to ask probing, even challenging, questions.

AQUARIUS  Jan 20-Feb 18
Nosy questions get way out of hand. Mind your own business. Look for ways to improve your home life. Thrift and resourcefulness will boost your confidence.

PISCES  Feb 19-Mar 19
It’s easy to mouth off to your boss. It may be hard to keep your mouth shut and listen, but what you learn is well worth it. Your ability to handle criticism counts a lot toward your advancement.

ARIES  Mar 20-Apr 19
Collaborative efforts only provoke arguments and resentments. Be aware of their limits. Focus on being more effective and forgive mistakes on all sides.

TAURUS  Apr 20-May 20
Sexual exuberance gets you into big trouble. Make time and space to explore those passions. Be very clear on safety issues and prophylaxis. Don’t get so caught up in fun that work suffers.

GEMINI  May 21-Jun 20
Others seem eager to remind you of things you’d rather forget. Your outbursts aren’t going to help. Take it all with good humor or make a better effort to avoid annoying people.

CANCER  Jun 21-Jul 22
You’re liable to blurt out some ugly truth and you’ll have all hell to pay. Keep your mind and your chatter on philosophy, art and impersonal things that won’t cause offense.

LEO  Jul 23-Aug 22
You mean well with your exuberant outbursts, but overdo it. Focus on elegance, subtlety, even minimalism. A whisper can hold attention where shouting only drives people away.

VIRGO  Aug 23-Sep 22
Fights at home are inevitable. Minimize risk by analyzing your issues before speaking up. Your parents may have programmed your worst faults into you, but you’re responsible for fixing them.

LIBRA  Sep 23-Oct 22
What’s really being tested: your commitment to community or  dealing with pointless crap? Know your limits and to what you want to dedicate yourself. Talk with a friend who’s close.

SCORPIO  Oct 23-Nov 21
Easy, comfortable chats with your partner lead to tests of commitment. They may not be worth passing. Think carefully. You may not follow friends’ advice, but listen and think about it.

Jack Fertig can be reached at 415-864-8302 or Starjack.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition November 25, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Halloween Block Party sees record attendance; future Cedar Springs events to require fencing

We’ve posted photos and video from Saturday night’s Halloween Block Party on Cedar Springs, but we also had some pretty major news to share.

About 12,000 people attended this year’s Block Party, according to police estimates, up from roughly 8,000 in 2009. DISD Detective Sgt. Jeremy Liebbe, co-operations commander for the block party, said when he first began working the event eight years ago, attendance was only about 4,000.

While some don’t appreciate the apparent influx of non-LGBT people to the block party, Liebbe said he thinks it’s actually a good thing for the community. However, he added that the increasing crowd size presents some safety issues, and authorities likely will require future block parties on Cedar Springs to be fenced.

“It’s good for the businesses, it’s good for the economy of the community, but that does create some added public safety issues that we have to stay ahead of the game on,” Liebbe said, adding that local authorities can apply lessons they’ve learned from larger events like the St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Greenville Avenue.

Liebbe said all future block parties on Cedar Springs, including arts festivals, likely will require fencing. He said the fencing is inexpensive at only a few hundred dollars, but it will allow authorities to create a handful of checkpoints where people can enter and leave. In addition to controlling crowd size if necessary, they can stop people from bringing in alcohol in glass containers, coolers and backpacks, which is illegal.

“It’s all about what we can do to increase the safety and enjoyment of everyone who’s coming to the events,” Liebbe said, adding that many people purchase alcohol at places like Walgreen’s and Valero, not realizing they’re not supposed to bring it in. “Our biggest concern right now is the glass and the risk of injury.”

Liebbe said the fenced area for Cedar Springs block parties likely will extend from Reagan Street to just west of Woody’s, and possibly beyond ilume for some events. He said there are no plans to charge admission for people to enter the fenced area.

“It’s going to be as invisible as we can make it,” Liebbe said of the fencing. “We’re going to use the natural barriers.”

Liebbe said there are no plans to fence off the area during the Pride parade, although there is some talk of fencing Lee Park during the Pride festival.

Despite the huge crowd at this year’s block party, there were only five arrests, Liebbe said — two for assault, one for theft and two for public intoxication. Liebbe credited strong cooperation from the community combined with good work by officers for the small number of incidents.

“The problems are historically very, very low at that event,” he said.

—  John Wright