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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Friday, April 18, 2014

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Bobby's learning plenty about the early life of George Washington thanks to this engaging new read.

OnMilwaukee.com recommends, Feb. 23, 2013


Bookworms, TV junkies, history buffs and sports lovers will all want to see what OnMilwaukee.com recommends this week.

"1600 Penn" - When I first saw the commercials for this daffy Thursday-night NBC comedy, I was unsure. A half-hour sitcom about the First Family, with Bill Pullman once again resurrecting the America's Favorite Fake President bit? It seemed a little too formulaic. But then I watched it, and I couldn't stop laughing - so now I can't stop watching. Bill Pullman is (inexplicably) as adorable as he was in 1996; Jenna Elfman plays his beautiful wife who's constantly trying to prove herself, and Marshall Malloy (Andre Holland) plays his press secretary who's secretly in love with the pregnant First Daughter (Martha MacIsaac). The group is rounded out by a gaggle of wacky kids, and Josh Gad is hilarious as the Prez's grown couch-surfer of a son. It's not Sorkin, but it's not bad, either. - Colleen Jurkiewicz

Saturday night Bucks game - Head to the BMO Harris Bradley Center tonight as the Bucks take on the Atlanta Hawks. It's Monta Ellis bobblehead night and it will mark J.J. Redick's debut in Milwaukee. Saturday nights Downtown are always a good time. - Jim Owczarski and Jeff Sherman

"Modern Cartooning" by Christopher Hart – I'm leery of books that teach you to draw. I haven't found many good ones, but I was recently sent a copy of this book which teaches kids or adults how to draw modern cartoon figures, from "Johnny Test" to "The Fairly OddParents." It seems really helpful. My kids took to this book immediately – it's large and colorful – and created cartoon drawings that far surpass their abilities thanks to the book's step-by-step technique. My refrigerator is plastered with cartoon drawings these days. – Molly Snyder

"Where The Cherry Tree Grew" by Philip Levy (St. Martin's Press) – Previously, I'd never recommended a book before finishing it, but I'm reading this book about, well, I'll let the subtitle say it: "The Story of Ferry Farm, George Washington's Boyhood Home," and it's fascinating. I admit I picked up the book because it was written by one of my best friends from high school, but now that I'm into it, I'd recommend it to anyone even mildly interested in American history. The story is a broad one, drawing on Native American history, the mythical moments of Colonial America – did George really chop down the cherry tree? – a Civil War battle and a more recent battle against a Walmart plan to build a mall on the site of the farm. Really engaging reading. – Bobby Tanzilo

Walnuts -- An odd recommendation, I know, but add a few walnuts to your diet this week. They're not the cheapest nut out there, but they're really good, easy to eat if purchased out of the shell and good for you. Also, many will tell you that they help reduce the risk of heart disease by improving blood vessel elasticity and plaque accumulation. -- Jeff Sherman

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