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Arts and Entertainment

Lebowski Fest LA 2009: May 7 - 8

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A Walter Bowls | Jerry Duvall

It's that time of year, Dudes! Time to break out the bowling ball, and challenge your own personal Jesus to a match at Lebowski Fest 2009.

The event, an homage to the Coen Brothers' cult hit "The Big Lebwoski," was conceived of in 2002 by Founding Dudes Will Russell and Scott Shuffit. "Scott and I were obsessed fans of this movie," says Russell. "We used to spend hours after band practice quoting it." And their shared fanaticism may have gone no further than the confines of their garage, had it not been for one serendipitous encounter. The two found themselves manning a booth at a tattoo convention - "We were totally out of our element," says Russell - and to pass the time, natch, they quoted lines back and forth. "These guys from Michigan were next to us, quoting along with us," he continues. The discovery of kindred spirits was all it took, and from there, Lebowski Fest was born.

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Since then, the Fest has grown from a small gathering in a Kentucky Baptist church (Shuffit and Russell are Louisville natives) to a national phenomenon for Dude aficionados coast-to-coast. This year's kick-off event in L.A. promises to be a doozy: in addition to the usual movie screening and bowling party, there will be appearances from the film's cast, a re-enactment of the infamous Rug Pissing scene, and a performance by an 8-year-old guitar phenomenon.

The unifying aspect of the movie and the subsequent Fest remain a mystery, even to the Founding Dudes. "I don't totally understand it," says Shuffit. But, he adds, "it's a great party."

Lebowksi Fest LA
May 7th, 7:00 p.m.
Movie Party @ The Wiltern
3790 Wilshire Blvd, LA 90010
Music and special guests, followed by a screening of the film.
Tickets: $15 - $19.99

May 8th, 9:00 p.m.
Bowling Party @ Cal Bowl
2500 E Carson St., Lakewood, CA 90712
Bowling, costume, trivia and other contests
Tickets: $27.50

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