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Busy week of events features Alan Dixon, Magic Johnson, Common & Phylicia Rashad

AGENDA ACTION: Lots of happenings coming up around town including Illinois’ former U.S. senator Alan Dixon dropping by the Beverly Arts Center 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday to sign copies of his new book, “The Gentleman from Illinois: Stories from Forty Years of Elective Public Service.” Dixon’s long service to our state including stints as a state rep, state senator, Illinois treasurer and secretary of state — before his election to the U.S. Senate in 1980.

†Also Wednesday, Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Common will focus attention on the nation’s high school dropout rate at a “Friends of Magic” event at the Magic Johnson Bridgescape Academy, 3210 W. Roosevelt Road. The event begins at 11:30 a.m. Chicagoan — as well as noted rapper and actor — Common will be there to sign-on as the first “friend” of the Friends of Magic organization — and it’s nationwide campaign to fight the high school dropout rate.

Diane and Quinton Primo — two of Chicago’s best known philanthropists and civic leaders — are spearheading “Primo Classico Br’Italia,” a special benefit to help end homelessness. Using the themes of cars, cuisine and fashion — three things that are easily identifiable with both Britain and Italy — the event will raise funds for the Primo Center for Women and Children. It all takes place at Lake Forest Sportscars in Lake Bluff, 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Vintage models of Ferraris, Aston Martins, Lamborghinis, Rolls Royces, Bentleys will be showcased — as well as special tastings created by celebrated chefs and a fashion show featuring cutting-edge Italian and British couture. Tony winner Phylicia Rashad will be a special honoree acia Rat the fete, and Grammy winner Arturo Sandoval will perform.