Weather Forecast


Patt Rall Arts Column for July 30: Weekend is full of entertainment activities

Another action packed weekend for residents and visitors as the town of Bemidji welcomes the Dragon Boat Races, Downtown Crazy Daze, Birchmont Golf Tournament, the Beltrami County Fair and the opening of the melodrama at the state park. The Beltrami County Fair entertainment on the Marilyn Shutter Stage will begin at 1 p.m. today and Friday, July 30 and 31, and 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 1 and 2. Jam sessions will begin at 8 p.m. today through Saturday. For a complete listing of the local groups who will be performing on the stage and the times, look at

Jazz performances

Terramara, an original contemporary jazz and rock group will perform Friday and Saturday, July 31 and Aug. 1, at Brigid's Irish Cross Pub, 317 Beltrami Ave. N.W. Starting at 9 p.m. each night, the show is free to the public and is sponsored in part by Bemidji Appraisal Service. Brigid's kitchen will be open until 9 p.m.

Concert series

The Lake Bemidji Summer Concert Series welcomes Bemidji Community Theater and their annual, really silly, musical melodrama "Riders of the Golden Sphinx" by Norman Bert in the Lake Bemidji State Park Amphitheater. Show times are 7:30 Friday and Saturday, July 31 and Aug. 1. A free will offering will be accepted to offset production costs. Please be aware that cars need a park sticker to enter. These events are made possible, in part, by a grant from the Region 2 Arts Council through funding from the Minnesota State Legislature as well as the collaborative effort of Lake Bemidji State Park and the Headwaters School of Music and the Arts.

Comedy show

Bemidji's own stand-up comic, Patty Byers, will perform at the North County Junction for a Ladies Night Out with her show, "Comedy for Women." Men are also welcome to this free event with prizes, games and lots of laughs beginning at 9Friday, July 31, 106 Aspen Ave. S.W., Cass Lake.

Band concert

The Bemidji Community Band will perform a concert at 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, on the lawn at Baker Park, 803 Dewey Ave. N.E. Regulars know to take a chair, a sweater and join their friends for these community concerts. A free will offering will be accepted to help defray costs for musical scores and equipment.

Church musicians

The Bemidji Area Church Musicians 2009 Summer Recital Series has concerts each Wednesday until the end of August. Joan Meulebroeck on the organ and Mary Thoreson on the piano will play at noon Wednesday, Aug. 5, at Calvary Lutheran Church, 2508 Washington Ave S. A free will offering will be accepted in support of music scholarships at the door. Always well attended, these half-hour concerts give the public an opportunity to hear area church musicians play and also enjoy a luncheon at the host church after the concert for a nominal cost.

Opera festival

The Lake Bemidji Summer Opera Festival regrets to announce that Mozart's "La Nozze di Figaro" will not be performed as expected because anticipated underwriting was not secured.

Other events

- Paul Bunyan Playhouse and Bemidji Community Theater have announced they will be presenting a collaborative effort, "Pirates of Penzance" a Gilbert and Sullivan musical comedy. This will be a high energy show with physical comedy, challenging lyrics, dancing and sword fighting. Actors, male and female, ages 15 and older, are encouraged to audition and prepare 16 bars of music, an accompanist will be provided. Director Mary Knox Johnson and musical director Karen Bradley will hold auditions from 9-11 a.m. and 2-4 p.m., Aug. 8 and 7-9 p.m. Aug. 24 at The Cabin Coffee House, 214 Third St. N.W., or by appointment. For more information, contact Kelly Kirk, technical director, at 760-1066 or Mary Johnson at 333-8740.

- "Greater Tuna," a slapstick comedy by Jaston Williams, Joe Sears and Ed Howard is on stage at the Paul Bunyan Playhouse. Two actors bring 20 different characters to the stage. Performance times are 8 p.m. through Saturday, Aug. 1, at the historic Chief Theater, 312 Beltrami Ave. N.W. Ticket prices are $22 for adults and $10 for those younger than 21 and may be purchased in person at the playhouse box office 751-7270 or online at

- Northern Light Opera Company of Park Rapids will present "Fiddler on the Roof" at 7 p.m. Friday, July 31, and Saturday, Aug. 1, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2. At 6 p.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 1 and 2, Allen and Sharon Friedman of Park Rapids will talk about Jewish traditions. Show times continue at 7 p.m. Aug. 6 and 7 and 3 p.m. Aug 8 at Park Rapids Area High School 401 Huntsinger Ave., Park Rapids. Ticket prices are $20 for adults, $15 for seniors (65 and older) and $10 for children younger than 12 with a 10 percent discount if purchased in advance. There are also group rates. For more information,. Go to Tickets will be sold at the door if available. This event is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Region 2 Arts Council through funding from the Minnesota State Legislature

- Bad Cat Creations Gallery and Gifts features art and fine craft by over 35 different artists. They are located near Bemidji Woolen Mills at 315 Irvine Ave. and will close at 6 p.m. on Friday.

- Beltrami County Historical Society has an ongoing exhibit in collaboration with

- Gallery North, "Summer Breeze." Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Saturday at the Historic James H. Hill Great Northern Depot, 130 Minnesota Ave. S.W.

- Bemidji Community Art Center galleries are featuring "New Work" by local artists Marlon Davidson, Butch Holden, Jay Jones, Marley Kaul, Don Knudson and Vivienne Morgan in a display of sculpture, mixed media, ceramics, painting and photography. There is also new inventory in Shop 426, whose proceeds benefit programming at BCAC and the participating artists. BCAC is open Monday through Saturday and is free and open to the public, 426 Bemidji Ave.

- Bemidji Public Library, 509 America Ave. N.W., welcomes Janelle Christnesen as its featured artist for July.

- Cabin Coffeehouse and Café, 214 Third St. N.W., features local artist Audrey Merschman, who works in oils and watercolors. Merschman has done illustrations for 11 children's books and watercolors for a card company. The Cabin is open seven days a week.

- Dunn Bros. Coffee, 501 Paul Bunyan Drive S., welcomes the work of Pat Shough, who paints under the name of Sillimandi, for July. Also on display and available for purchase are Levandowski Pottery and fused and slumped glassware by MaryBeth Vaudrin and Beverlee Olson.

- Gallery North, 502 Third St. N.W., welcomes Showcase Artist for the Month Tom Hetznecker who is known for unique line drawings.

- Headwaters School for Music and the Arts, 519 Minnesota Ave. N.W., invites the public an exhibit by photographer Brian Grund. His exhibit, "Chasing the Wind," is about taking the time to notice the serendipity of life and its meaning in teaching basic values of love, respect, integrity, patience and humility. All the photographs are for sale and the proceeds will be used to pay for wilderness travel expenses for youth.

- Neilson Place, 1000 Anne St. N.W., and the North Country Health Services Art Committee welcome an exhibit by Natalia Himmirska, "Embrace." Her work will be on display through August for the pleasure of the residents, families, staff and the community at large. The work is for sale, and a price list is provided at the reception desk.

- Wild Hare Bistro and Coffee House, 523 Minnesota Ave. N.W., presents the photography of Tyson Kuznia, a professional photographer based in Fargo, N.D. Kuznia will share his passion for portraiture in sensual, delicate compositions in color and black and white. First Friday Wine Bar will be held from 5 to 9 p.m.

- Beltrami Historical Society, 130 Minnesota Ave. S.W., is accepting vendors for the eighth annual Depot Day Fest. Artists and crafters, flea marketers, antique collectors, woodworkers, metalworkers, jewelers, non-profits and garden producers are encouraged to attend. There are a limited number of outdoor spaces. Call 444-3376 for details. The event will be from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Aug. 8 at the James J. Hill Historic Railroad Station.

- Bemidji Sculpture Walk received a grant from the G. W. Nielson Foundation to fabricate and display fiberglass images that will be decorated by artists for the 2010 season. Members of the general public are being asked to vote for an image: fish, beaver, turtle, deer, small canoe, Paul Bunyan or anther choice. Votes will be compiled until the end of August, at which time the winner will be announced. To cast your vote, e-mail Two-Dimensional Artists may also access this website for further information and apply to participate by decorating the winning image.

- Wet-on-Wet Floral Watercolor class where students will create a loose style watercolor painting of birch trees will be held at 1 p.m. on Aug. 13 at Gallery North. All materials will be provided and students will complete a matted 16-by-20-inch painting. For information call 751-7741 or register at Gallery North.

- Tutto Bene, 300 Beltrami Ave. N.W., has an ongoing display of new art work by Beverlee Olson, Jane Freeman, Judy Selby Pat Shough and MaryBeth Vaudrin for viewing pleasure and sale. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and is closed on Sunday

- Stop at the Tourist Information Center, 300 Bemidji Ave. by the statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe, for a map and information on the pieces included in the Bemidji Sculpture Walk.

Mark your calendars now with these upcoming events:

- Fourth Annual Lake Itasca Family Music Festival, Aug.7-9 on the Pioneer Farmer's Grounds. For more information: or 333-1421.

- Wilton Days, Aug. 8-9. Talent Show sign-ups call 751-1186.

- "Pirates, The Musical," by Mrs. Yam's Children's Theatre, 7:30 p.m. Aug. 20-22 and 2:30, Aug. 22.

- Oompah for the Arts, the annual fundraiser for Bemidji Area Arts Endowment, Sept.18; tickets on sale now. Information: Chamber of Commerce Web site or 209-7884.

- Street musicians 5 to 8 p.m. every Thursday night, downtown Bemidji.

- Pelican Railroad 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. every Wednesday at the Backyard BBQ in downtown Bemidji.

Announcements of arts and entertainment events may be sent to the Bemidji Pioneer, P.O. Box 455, Bemidji, MN 56619-0455 or e-mailed to