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Walker Bay Theater opens ninth summer theater season

WALKER -- Walker Bay Theater recently opened its ninth year of summer theater with the comedy “North Woods Women, The Odd Couple.”

Based on Neil Simon’s Odd Couple, the setting is a rustic cabin on Leech Lake where a group of women are playing Trivial Pursuit awaiting the arrival of their friend Florence Unger.

The play is directed by and also stars Kay Dee Sanders, whose playwriting nuances add local flair that is sure to please both Walker and Bemidji area residents, according to a release.

Sanders plays Olive Madison, an eclectic sports enthusiast, who’s a bit bombastic and secretly lonely who doesn’t care too much for maintaining a stereotypical household. Florence Unger, a neat freak who likes to cook and decorate has just left her husband, is played splendidly by Priscilla Smith, and becomes Olive’s roommate. Smith and Sanders back and forth fulminations steal the show.

Supporting cast members Otto Ringle and Dave Holk score big as the Ovesen brothers who have a little trouble translating Nordic euphemisms to English and want to spend time with the women so the neighbors will stop talking about them.

The no-nonsense, easily irritated Sylvie, played by Lori Gamache, entertains with smart aleck comments that are reminiscent of an older Rizzo in “Grease.” Jaya Gamache playing Renee debuts on the acting scene as a single woman dating a doctor. Krysta Sanders gives a strong performance as the overly concerned off duty cop, fearing everyone needs to take Florence’s condition a bit more serious. Brenda Zimmer completes the cast playing an often times spacey, yet comedic Vera.

The show runs through Sunday, July 2, with evening performances at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Matinee performances are at 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Performance time runs about two and half hours with an intermission that provides a snack and beverage.

Cost is $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and youth. Walker Bay Theater is located at 100 Highland Ave. NW in Walker, the lower level of the American National Bank building.