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Patt Rall arts column for May 19: Handbell concert scheduled for Saturday

Strikepoint, an internationally known and traveled church-based handbell ensemble, will perform for Bemidji audiences at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 22, in Bangsberg Fine and Performing Arts Complex on the campus of Bemidji State University, 14th Street and Birchmont Drive Northeast. Strikepoint rings 76 bronze Schulmerich handbells, 85 Schulmerich Chimes, 25 Silver Melody Bells, 36 Petit and Fritzen handbells and an assortment of other instruments, which have included additional percussion, trumpet, viola, clarinet, snare drum, organ, flute, horn, pennywhistle and a gong. The concert selections range from classical to jazz, Bach to Brubeck with both familiar and newer music. Their recordings can be heard on American Public Radio's Schickele Mix and other nationally broadcast programs. For more information on the group, see or Our Voices on the home page of Bemidji This concert is hosted by the Lutheran Student Fellowship, a recognized student organization of BSU, with a suggested donation of $10.

Opera gala

Italian Opera Night Gala will feature a gourmet Italian dinner, 18 vocalists and a small instrumental group beginning at 7:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday, June 4 and 5, at Ruttger's Birchmont Lodge. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. with a cash bar in the main lodge lounge to be followed by dinner at 7 p.m. in the Garden Room, the main dining area of the lodge. The price is $60 per person with proceeds going to the performers and future opera programs. Tickets go quickly for this semi-annual event at Ruttger's (The other is an evening of romance for Valentine's Day at the Hampton Inn and Suites.) Please send your reservation to Fulton Gallagher, 3216 Gryce Stine Road N.E., Bemidji, MN 56601. You can contact Gallagher at 586-2536 or For more information on this event, see or Our Voices on home page of Bemidji There will be a more complete listing of the performers and musicians.

Author reading

Minnesota author Leif Enger will visit the Bemidji Public Library as part of the Kitchigami Reads/Kitchigami Writes project, made possible with funding from the Minnesota Legacy Fund to preserve arts and cultural heritage. Enger, the author of "So Brave, Young and Handsome" will be in Bemidji at 7 p.m., Thursday, May 20. Enger has written the story reminiscent of favored cowboy stories of the Old West and set it in 1915 Minnesota with a mix of reality and romanticism. Enger, the author of the bestseller "Peace Like a River" worked as a reporter and producer with Minnesota Public Radio.

PB Playhouse event

Kevin Kling, storyteller and commentator, who can be heard on MPR's "All Things Considered," will be here in Bemidji at the 60th Anniversary celebration of the Paul Bunyan Playhouse from 5:30-9 p.m., Thursday, May 20, at the historic Chief Theatre, 314 Beltrami Ave. N.W. The annual Stars in the Street event will be different this year with a bistro on stage, live music and a guest artist, in addition to the introduction of this year's calendar of productions by Artistic Director Zach Curtis. Reserved event seating is available now at the box office; tickets are $16 each or four tickets for $60. Call 751-7270 for more information and for box office hours. This event is sponsored in part by the Bemidji Area Arts Endowment, First National Bank Bemidji, Sparkling Waters Restaurant, Tutto Bene Italian Restaurant and Espresso Bar and Keg & Cork.

TV series

Common Ground, a new series by Lakeland Public Television, a magazine show based on Northern Minnesota's arts, history, culture and heritage, will air at 7 p.m. Thursdays. This week, the featured stories are about Josh Porter who will demonstrate how he forms wood, foam and other materials into sculptural pieces. Erika Mullen-Hagberg will create cob sculptures for home décor, and Paula Smith of Bemidji will paint from turn-of-the-century pictures of women. The shows are rebroadcast at 6 p.m. on Sundays. Those interested in being featured on the show should contact Ashley Hull, Legacy Production Manager at 333-3022 or Common Ground is made possible by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Fund.

Porcelain art

Porcelain artist from San Paola, Brazil, Mario de Freitas will hold a two-day workshop on painting porcelain plates from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday and Saturday, June 4 and 5, at the Bemidji Public Library. The cost of the workshop will include all materials and firing: $30 for one day and $50 for two days. This workshop is sponsored by the Northern Artist Association and class size is limited. Call Grace at 759-2952 or Gallery North at 444-9813 to reserve a spot. Each participant is asked to bring a bag lunch for each day.

Wildlife artist

Linda Walker, nationally known wildlife artist, will conduct a three-day oil painting workshop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, July 29-31, in the Beltrami Electric Community Room. The cost is $65 and pre-paid registration is required. This workshop is sponsored by the Northern Artist Association and class size is limited. Call Grace at 759-2952 or Gallery North at 444-9813 to reserve a spot. Walker's art may be viewed at

Smithsonian exhibit

"Between Fences," a traveling exhibit on a national icon, fences - to keep livestock in, to keep marauders out, to curtail the movements of small children and lively pets and for so many other reasons - will open at the Clearwater County History Center in Shevlin. The Clearwater County History Center was chosen by the Minnesota Humanities Center to host this traveling exhibit on loan from the Smithsonian Institute as part of the Museum on Main Street project. Conceived as part of an effort to bring exhibitions to rural communities, "Between Fences" is on its last stop before returning to the Smithsonian. A selection of artifacts, photos and illustrations, the collection will examine the importance of fences from colonial America to the present day. The Museum on Main Street is a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and the Federation of State Humanities Councils- the Minnesota Humanities Center, and the Clearwater County Historical Society. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and the Hearst Foundation.

Student show

The TIN PAN gALLErY at the Blackduck Area History and Art Center is pleased to present the annual Blackduck School Student Artist Show under the direction of Blackduck Art teacher Kory Greiner. The art works will be on display May 20-29, with an opening reception from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Friday, May 21 at the History Center.

Artist call

There is a call for artists in Beltrami, Clearwater, Hubbard, Lake of the Woods and Mahnomen counties by Gallery North and Northern Artists. They will sponsor a two-day First City Ethnic Arts Festival frm 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, and Sunday, Sept. 12, at the Hungry Bear Ballroom, 2300 24 St. N.W. Join them for two days of fine art sales and ethnic arts displays, demonstrations and exhibits. Booth space, with a table and cloth, is available for up to 50 artists. This event will have live entertainment and extensive publicity. Booth rental is $30 for reservations post marked by June 15. Reservations post marked after June 15 will be $45. For information or to obtain a reservation form, call Jeannine at 444-4482 or 1209 30 St .N.W., Bemidji, MN 56601. Make checks payable to Gallery North. This activity is funded, in part, by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage fund as approved by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on Nov. 4, 2008.

Watercolor class

Gallery North will hold a watercolor class from 1-4 p.m. Saturday, May 22, titled "Natures Twitter." Students will paint and mat a 16-by-20 watercolor of a Minnesota chickadee in a variety of poses and backgrounds. All materials will be provided. Registration is $45 the day of class or $40 prepaid. Registrations are taken at Gallery North. E-mail for more information.

Poetry reading

Tickets are on sale now for "An Evening with Billy Collins," former Poet Laureate of the United States, at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 25 in the Bemidji High School Auditorium. This nationally known and respected poet is a distinguished professor of English at Lehman College of the City University of New York and the author of eight poetry books. Collins is a magnet for those who like humor and wisdom in poetry; he speaks to the everyman in all of us. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for students and may be purchased now at Lueken's Village Foods North and the Headwaters School of Music and the Arts. Ticket requests by mail may be sent to HSMA, PO Box 542, Bemidji MN 56601. In the coming months there will be more information about Collins published as feature articles and blog entries and video of Marsh Muirhead reading some of Collins' poetry.

Other events

- Bad Cat Creations Gallery and Gifts featured artist for May is Paul Krueger, who creates one-of-a-kind hand painted T-shirts. Bad Cat Creations is located at 315 Irvine Ave NW. For more information call 444-9225.

- Bemidji Community Art Center's Annual Fifth Grade Invitational showcasing work by area fifth grade students from Central, Horace May, J.W. Smith, Lincoln, Northern, Red Lake, Schoolcraft, Solway and St. Philip's elementary schools. This exhibit will run through Friday, May 21. The BCAC, 426 Bemidji Ave., is free and open to the public. Visit the Art Center and Shop or at or contact us at 444-7570 or at Hours are noon-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and noon-4 p.m. Saturday.

- Beltrami County Historical Society presents "Birds of a Feather," in conjunction with Gallery North. The History Center is located at 130 Minnesota Ave. S.W. in the historic James J. Hill Great Northern Depot. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday. For more information 444-3376 or

- Bemidji Public Library, 509 America Ave. N.W., continues its exhibit by artist Marion Caroline and her exhibit "Bemidji Ecliptic," watercolors, acrylics, oils and paintings on feathers for the Library Art Wall in May.

- Brigid's Cross Irish Pub and Restaurant, 317 Beltrami Ave. N.W., has on display the work of Eli Balbach. Balbach works with oil on canvas using impressionist techniques. Brigid's Cross will be open at noon Monday through Saturday and closed on Sunday. For more information call 444-0567 or find us on the web at

- Cabin Coffee House and Café, 214 Third St. N.W., has on display Marion Reil's "From the Cabin Window," a gleaning of images or ideas that come the nature's observance. The Cabin also features original art and cards for sale by Audrey Merschman. The Cabin is open seven days a week.

- Dunn Bros Coffee, 501 Paul Bunyan Drive S., is pleased to present the work of photographer and artist Jess Watnemo Storey and her exhibit "Girlz in White Dresses." The photos feature various women doing fun things in wedding gowns from all over the United States, including Bemidji. Dunn Bros is open seven days a week. Call 444-5252 Gallery North's showcase artist for May is Grace Privetsky, wood carver and watercolor artist. Member featured artist of the month is Monie Martin, noted for her antler baskets. The gallery is located at 502 Irvine Ave. N.W. Gallery North is pleased to have its new web site up and running. The website features Gallery North Artists, Artwork and information on the Gallery and upcoming events.

- Glazed & Amused - Paint your Own Pottery Studio, 311 Third St. N.W. has a window display featuring beautiful ceramic pieces painted by the customers. Walk-in painters are always welcome. For more information call 333-6880 or email

- The North Country Health Services Art Committee presents work by artist Kate Lalone and her exhibit, "Visions of Life." Kate Lalone, Lilly's eye photo artist, challenges us to view perspectives of life through all senses in this photo exhibit. Kate's work will be on display now through June for the pleasure of residents, families, staff and the community at large. Also featured through the month of June are Handwoven Baskets by Eve Sumsky in the new coffee and gift shop, The Bistro at WoodsEdge. Her baskets are for sale and may be purchased on site. The Bistro at WoodsEdge is located just inside the front entryway to Neilson Place at WoodsEdge, on the North Country Health Services Senior Living Campus, 1000 Anne St. N.W. Bemidji. For more information, e-mail

- Wild Hare Bistro and Coffee House, 523 Minnesota Ave. N.W., has on display "NEW WORK" by Marlon Davidson featuring collages executed during the past two years. The coffee house is open six days a week and is closed on Sunday.

- Mask & Rose Women's Theater Collective new exhibit in the Fleur de Lis Gallery is by artist Joan Wilson and her exhibit "Out of the (Art) Closet" featuring portraiture and still life paintings. Wild Rose Theater in the Masonic Temple, 501 Paul Bunyan Drive.

- Headwaters School of Music and the Arts, 519 Minnesota Ave. N.W., has on display works of watercolor artist Judy Selby.

- 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 (Sillimundi) Michael Thomas Sunnarborg and MaryBeth Vaudrin for viewing pleasure and sale. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and is closed on Sunday.

- Stop by 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:

- Brigid's Cross Irish Pub hosts Open Stage beginning at 9 p.m. every Thursday. Call 444-0567 for more information.

- Pelican Railroad will perform from 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. every Wednesday at the Backyard BBQ, 119 Third St. N.W.

- Northern Artist Association meets at 12:30 p.m. the third Monday of the month at the Eagles Club. The public is invited to attend. For information call 759-2952.

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