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Pioneer Previews: Wooden Nichols to perform the hits

Could the "Wooden Nichols" name be taken from one of the players we see in various groups -- Ken Nichols? Whether yes or no, Ken and his friends (and ours as well) in Wooden Nichols will bring back memories with "Leaving on a Jet Plane" and "Five Hundred Miles" from the 60s along with other rock and roll favorites when they perform at 1:30 p.m. today at Lake Bemidji State Park. The Wooden Nichols are Ken Nichols, Bill Ayers, Terri Bakker, Don Leet, Kari Munson, Larry Young and Don Zieman; they were one of the first groups to appear for the concert series at Lake Bemidji State Park. The band is noted for its interpretations of bluegrass melodies such as "Little Mountain Church" and "Long Black Train." The concert begins at 1:30 p.m. and is sponsored by Headwaters School of Music and the Arts, as well as the park. Admission is free for each concert, but you will need to have a valid park pass or purchase a day pass at the gate. Day passes are $5 and the event is family friendly and casual.

There is a change in artists this week for the Wednesday Bemidji Area Church Musicians midweek concerts. The church is the same, St. Philip's Church, but the players will be Beth Hendrickson on flute accompanied by Wayne Hoff on piano. The 30-minute recital will begin at noon at the church, 702 Beltrami Ave. NW. A free-will offering will be accepted to support music scholarships awarded each year to freshman/sophomore college students majoring in music. A luncheon will follow the concert for a nominal cost.

Tickets are selling quickly for the "Desserts by Design," the annual fundraiser for the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra. The gala will also feature a live auction, some items include Minnesota Wild home game tickets and a German Gourmet Dinner for eight prepared by Monica Maes. The $25 ticket includes complimentary wine, the desserts and a performance by Eric Gustafson and his trio "Jazz Atavist." The deadline for tickets is Aug. 22 and the event is scheduled for 6 p.m. Sept. 5 at the Sanford Center, 111 Event Center Drive NE. Contact Karen Amble at 444-7005 and leave a message.


• The Bemidji Public Library's monthly book discussion program will be at noon at the library, 509 America Ave. NW. This month, the book for discussion is "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou. According to library materials: "Sent by their mother to live with their devout, self-sufficient grandmother in a small Southern town, Maya and her brother, Bailey, endure the ache of abandonment and the prejudice of the local "powhitetrash." At 8-years-old and back at her mother's side in St. Louis, Maya is attacked by a man many times her age—and has to live with the consequences for a lifetime..."

• From 1854 to 1929, so-called orphan trains ran regularly from the cities of the East Coast to the farmlands of the Midwest, carrying thousands of abandoned children, whose fates would be determined by luck or chance. Would they be adopted by a kind and loving family, or would they face a childhood and adolescence of hard labor and servitude? "Orphan Train" author Christine Baker Kline, will speak at 7 p.m. at the Bemidji Public Library, 509 America Ave. NW. This legacy program is free and open to the public.


• The Bemidji Public Library's monthly book discussion program, 7 p.m., at the library, 509 America Ave. NW. This month, the book for discussion is "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou. See above listing for more details.


The Bemidji Area Church Musicians continue their summer concert series with Beth Hendricks on flute and Wayne Hoff on piano at noon at St. Philip's Church, 702 Bemidji Ave. The program for this 30-minute concert is flute compositions by French composers: E. Bozza, C. Bolling and J. Massenet; and Romanian composer G. Enescu. A free-will offering will be accepted. The luncheon following the concert will be nominally priced.

• Long Lake Theater production "Leaving Iowa" by Spike Manton and Tim Clue is "a toast to the classic family road trip, both touching and funny." Matinee at 3 p.m. today. Order tickets online at or call (218) 732-0099: $18 Adults, $9 children ages 4 to 12 years, and group rate of $16 for 15 or more tickets. It takes about an hour to get there, but is always worth the trip, see website for directions.


• Long Lake Theater production "Leaving Iowa" by Spike Manton and Tim Clue. 8 p.m. See listing above for more information.

Ongoing exhibits

• Locations and short explanations for August exhibits and ongoing installations are available at the website Pull down First Friday tab.


• Northern Artist Association will host a porcelain painting workshop with Nancy Eagleson from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Aug. 29-30 in the Beltrami Electric Community Room, 4111 Technology Drive NW. Cost for the two-day workshop is $40 and all materials are included; two projects will be completed. Attendees are asked to bring a bag lunch. Sign up at Gallery North, or call 444-9813 or 759-2952 for more information.

Upcoming events

• "Make a New Friend" with Sesame Street Live at 10:30 a.m. on Sat. Aug. 23 at the Sanford Center. Tickets are $10 and a $2 facility fee will be added to all tickets prices now available aT Ticketmaster at both Lueken's Village Foods locations, or by calling (800) 745-5032. For an extra $20, a pre-show "meet and greet" with two Sesame Street Live Friends, including Elmo.

• Rock band Boston, with special guest Starship, and their high energy shows will be coming to the Sanford Center at 8 p.m. Aug. 30. Tickets are $81, $65, $45 and $31 and can be purchased at any Ticketmaster location or the Bob Lowth Ford Pickup Windows at the Sanford Center box office.

• Bemidji Community Theater production of "Fiddler on the Roof" will hold auditions from 5 to 7 p.m. on Aug. 27-28 at the historic Chief Theater. The show is scheduled to run Nov.14-16 and Nov. 21-23. Men and women of all ages, teenagers and a few children are needed for the production.