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Staff Picks: Philadelphia Zoo’s KidZooU and Son Volt at Union Transfer

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Philadelphia Zoo’s KidZooU

Don’t let the summer go by without checking out the Philadelphia Zoo’s latest attraction. Made possible with contributions from two prominent local donors, the Hamilton Family Children’s Zoo & Faris Family Education Center (aka KidZooU) features meandering goats, a barnyard, exotic fish and birds, plus interactive exhibits covering timely topics like energy conservation and recycling. All of it is accessible to kids with varying needs. Visit philadelphiazoo.org—Tara Behan
 

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Don’t Go

By Lisa Scottoline 
(St. Martin’s Press, 374 pages)

With countless bestsellers and more than 30 million books in print worldwide, this high-profile Main Liner apparently knows how to engage readers. But what her latest novel has that her others don’t is a male protagonist. Army doctor Mike Scanlon is every bit as endearing and relatable as her female characters, and the story has narrative staying power. —Tara Behan
 

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Son Volt

June 19 at Union Transfer

Among the founders of the ’90s alternative country movement that gained traction here among live-music aficionados and WXPN listeners, Jay Farrar has spent the better part of 15 years trying the recapture the frayed magic of his original band, Uncle Tupelo, after breaking away from his onetime creative foil, Jeff Tweedy (who found success in Wilco). With Son Volt, Farrar has had his moments—and the new CD, Honky Tonk, is among them. It’s a moody, more-C&W-than-rock set that pays unabashed tribute to the likes of Merle Haggard and Buck Owens. For those convinced country could never be cool, Son Volt might just change your mind. Visit utphilly.com. —Hobart Rowland

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