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Patt Rall Arts Column for Nov. 26: Holiday celebration begins Friday with Night We Light

The Night We Light Parade, an annual event which begins the holiday season in Bemidji each year, will begin at 6 p.m., Friday, Nov. 27, in downtown Bemidji. Some downtown businesses will be open to offer refreshments to parade watchers. Brigid's Cross Irish Pub will have hot cocoa for 50 cents from 6-8 p.m. After the parade, local singer and songwriter Lance Benson will be singing at the pub. Benson's performance of soulful and upbeat original folk music is free and open to the public and CDs will be on sale. The kitchen will be open until 9 p.m. and the pub until 1 a.m.

Acoustic concert

Lake Superior singer Sasha Mercedes will make her Bemidji debut from noon-2 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 28, at the Cabin Coffee House and Cafe, 214 Third St., N.W. The 26-year old singer/songwriter will be armed with her acoustic guitar and a set of vocal chords that will surprise and captivate the audience this weekend. Mercedes tells stories through her songs and plays original music. There are numerous sites about her and her work on the Internet, and she will have CDs for sale at the show. Seating is limited so get there early! The concert is free and open to the public.

Concert postponed

"Bemidji Has Talent" is postponed until Jan. 31. There will not be a show Sunday, Nov. 29.

School concert

Schoolcraft Learning Community Winter Concert will be held at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 3, at the Bemidji High School Auditorium. The public is invited to this free concert made possible in part by a grant from the Region 2 Arts Project Grants program through funds provided by the Minnesota State Legislature.

Lefse cookoff

"Lefse Festival Cook-off" will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 4, at the Hampton Inn, 1019 Paul Bunyan Drive S., where lefse tasters get to choose the "best darn lefse maker in Northern Minnesota." This fundraiser for the Beltrami County Historical Society will feature refreshments, door prizes and local vendors, as well as lefse to buy and take home. Tickets are $5 at the door.

Christmas play

"A Christmas Carol" by KG Entertainment will be performed at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 4; Saturday, Dec. 5; Thursday, Dec. 10; Friday, Dec. 11; Saturday, Dec.12; and at 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5, at the Historic Chief Theatre, 314 Beltrami Ave. N.W. This timeless Christmas story will be produced as if in the 1950s, and some of the characters will be played by returning actors such as Dave Moffett, who returns as Scrooge, and Al Berkowitz as Marley's ghost. Young Tiny Tim will be played by Wyatt Yartz. Special guest appearances will be made by local actors who are not in this year's holiday performances. Tickets are on sale now at Harmony Coop and Wild Hare Bistro and are priced at $10 general public, $8 students and seniors and free for children 10 years old and younger. Tickets will also be sold at the door.

Memorial concert

The first Geoffrey Woodley Memorial Concert will be held at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 8, on the main stage of the Bemidji State University Bangsberg Fine and Performing Arts Center, 14th Street and Birchmont Drive Northeast. Woodley was a longtime member of the Bemidji Chorale and an arts supporter in Bemidji. His memory will be honored in a concert by the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra where the orchestra will be joined by conductor Beverly Everett, who will play an organ concerto by Handel. As usual, members of the audience will sing selections from the "Messiah" and listen to Everett play Handel's Organ Concerto No. 4, Op. 4. The BSO welcomes the public to this holiday concert and a free will offering will be accepted.

Children's musical

"Seussical the Musical" is a show that presents many Dr. Seuss characters such as Horton the Elephant, Mayzie, Gertrude McFuzz, Sour Kangaroo and Cat in the Hat in a musical romp. The show is directed by Cate Belleveau and the music is directed by Suzy Jones. Show times and dates are: 7 p.m., Friday Dec. 4; 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 5; and 2 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 6. The following weekend, the shows are at 7 p.m., Friday, Dec. 11; 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 12; and 2 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 13. Tickets are $13 for adults and $6 for students through college and are on sale at Brigid's Cross Irish Pub and at the door, if available. A production of Mask and Rose Women's Theater Collective, all performances will be held at the Wild Rose Theater, 501 Bemidji Ave. N. The production is underwritten by the law firm of Drahos, Kieson and Christopher, P.A.

Artist call

The Bemidji Skate & Bike Association has issued a call for artists. Artists are encouraged to submit projects like sculptures, skateable art, mosaics and other art works to be included in the new skate park slated for construction next summer. More information can be found on the Bemidji Skate & Bike Web site at, by visiting the Headwaters School for Music and the Arts or by contacting Nate Dorr at All proposals are due by Thursday, Dec. 31, and will be considered as part of a Region 2 Arts Council Legacy Grant application.

Comedy show

Lorna Landvik, Minnesota author and stand-up comedienne, will present a program at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 3, at the Blackduck Golf Course Club House. Landvik, the author of "Tall Pines Polka," "Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons" and "Patty Jones' House of Curl," will give a program about her work. Free tickets for the event may be picked up at the Blackduck Library or by calling 218-835-6600 for more information.

Benefit concert

The Diamonds are returning to Bemidji for a holiday concert at 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6, at the Bemidji High School Auditorium, 2900 Division St. W. This legendary singing group known for such hits as "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?" "The Stroll," "Little Darlin'" and "Silhouettes," will also sing some hits of the four-part harmony vocal groups of that era: The Brothers Four, The Four Freshmen, The Four Lads, the Four Aces and The Four Seasons. The $20 tickets for the reserved seating are on sale now at Lueken's Village Foods North and South. This is a benefit concert for Lakeland Public Television.

Madrigal Dinner

Tickets are on sale now for BSU's 41st Annual Madrigal Dinner at 7 p.m. Friday-Sunday, Dec. 4, 5, 11, 12, and 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6. Founded by Paul Brandvik, BSU professor emeritus of vocal music, this traditional holiday fête is now celebrated by many groups across the country. Brandvik created the idea of Madrigal Dinners and wrote the book on how to produce them. The Beaux Arts Ballroom of Hobson Memorial Hall will be transformed into a Renaissance feast at an English castle. The King and Queen will host a five-course dinner for the Royal Court while minstrels, trouveres, cellar keepers, beggars and members of the royal kingdom perform. This masque this year is written by K.D. Howells. The concert by the Royal Court will usher in the yuletide season. Tickets are $35 each and must be purchased in advance by mail or in person at the Madrigal Dinner box office beginning October 5. For box office hours, call 755-3406. Mail orders may be sent to Madrigal Dinner Tickets, Department of Music, 1500 Birchmont Drive NE, No. 16, Bemidji, MN 56601. Vegetarian meals are also available and need to be pre-ordered.

Student show

Bad Cat Creations Gallery and Gifts, 315 Irvine Ave. N.W., welcomes Malisa VanMaasdam, a senior BFA student at BSU, and a premier of her work, "Lost in the Leaves," a collection of seasonal watercolor mono prints. Bad Cat Creations is a boutique of art and fine craft with more than 35 artists.

History exhibit

Beltrami County Historical Society in conjunction with Gallery North presents, "School Days." The center is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday-Saturday and is located in the historic James J. Hill Great Northern Depot at 130 Minnesota Ave. S.W.

Ceramic show

Bemidji Community Art Center, 426 Bemidji Ave., welcomes the public to view a display of the winning entries for the Seventh Annual It's Only Clay National Ceramic Exhibition. The exhibit will be on display until Dec. 19, and many of the pieces are available for purchase. While at the center, don't forget to check out the new inventory at Shop 426, all proceeds benefit BCAC programming and the artists of Shop 426. BCAC is free and open to the public every day but Sunday and Monday .

Art wall

Bemidji Public Library, 509 America Ave. N.W., welcomes Paul Simonson and his exhibit of spin-art paintings entitled "Potpourri" on the art wall for November. The library is Monday through Saturday.

Pub art

Brigid's Cross Irish Pub, 317 Beltrami Ave. N.W., invites the public to view work of Longville artist Sean Moran, a painter who works in acrylic on hardboard and his detailed wildlife portraits.

Café show

Cabin Coffeehouse and Café, 214 Third St. N.W., welcomes artist Terry Honstead's new exhibit "Local Ojibwe Leaders." Also on display and for sale are painting and cards by Audrey Merschman. The Cabin is open seven days a week.

Coffeehouse show

Dunn Bros Coffee, 501 Paul Bunyan Drive S., welcomes artist Mary Lingen for November. Lingen works with basic shapes and their relationships to each other in vibrant colors and layers. Also on display and available for purchase is fused and slumped glassware by MaryBeth Vaudrin and Beverlee Olson. Dunn Bros is open seven days a week.

Sculpture display

Fleur De Lis Gallery has on display Suzi Rhae Ross' exhibition of her new sculptural works and will be open every Monday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. through Dec. 14. The gallery is located in the Wild Rose Theater, 501 Bemidji Ave. N.

Holiday boutique

Gallery North, 502 Third St. N.W., announces the opening of the Gallery North Christmas Boutique and the featured artist of the month, Pat Shough and her recent watercolor works. The author of the month is David C. Swenson and his book "Miracle at Mercy Hospital."

Pottery studio

Glazed and Amused, 311 Third St. N.W., is a Paint Your Own Pottery Studio where walk-in painters are always welcome. The shop is open Wednesday-Sunday and hours are posted on the door.

HUUF exhibit

Headwaters Unitarian Universalist Fellowship,522 American Ave. N.W., has a display of the collaborative work of Bemidji artists Marlon Davidson and Don Knudson. Known for their work in wood and collage and their attempt to unify the combination of organic structures in contemporary forms, they are inspired by nature to make art that fits in the long history of American art.

Neilson Place show

Neilson Place and the North Country Health Services Art Committee are pleased to host Terry Honstead and her exhibit "Another Take," a collection of watercolor, acrylic and collage work which reflect her impression of life and other happenings around her life here in Bemidji, for the month of November. Her work is for sale and a price list will be at the reception desk. Neilson Place is located at 1000 Anne St. N.W.

Wild Hare

Wild Hare Bistro and Coffee House, 523 Minnesota Ave. N.W., artist of the month is Bemidji native Mali Mattsen and her exhibit of tendril and gestural mobiles and sculptures formed from metal and colorful handmade paper.

Tutto Bene

Tutto Bene, 300 Beltrami Ave. N.W., a restaurant and art gallery, has an ongoing display of new art work by Michael De Witt, Beverlee Olson, Jane Freeman, Judy Selby, Pat Shough (Sillmundi) Michael Thomas Sunnarborg and MaryBeth Vaudrin for viewing pleasure and sale. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and is closed on Sunday.

Sculpture Walk

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.


Advance notice of arts related activities for inclusion on blog entitled ArtsNews on the Bemidji website will be accepted by The intent of the blog is to list dates and times of future arts events to give competing arts organizations better information for scheduling their projects. Posting are now on

Mark your calendars now with these upcoming events:

- Jingle Bell Jazz, 3 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 5, Thompson Recital Hall, BSU. $5 adults, $3 senior citizens, free for students.

- Bemidji Chorale 31st Annual Christmas Concerts, 3 and 7 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 6, First Lutheran Church, reception and free will offering for chorale.

- Wind Ensemble/Symphonic Band Concert, 7:30 p.m., Monday, Dec. 7, main stage of Bangsberg Hall, $5 adults, $3 senior citizens, free for students.

- Percussion Ensemble Concert, 7:30 p.m., Wed. Dec.9, Thompson Recital Hall.

- Holiday Christmas Cookies by the Pound" 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, December 12, Blackduck History and Art Center.

- High Tea at Beltrami County Historical Society, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 12. Seating is limited. Call 444-3376 for reserved seating.

- Matthew Goinz senior recital, 7:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 13. Thompson Recital Hall.

- 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