Around the Arts, Feb. 29

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Beadwork from artist Thomas Stillday will be featured at Watermark from March 6 through May 30. Submitted photo.

Watermark to hold Ojibwe beadwork exhibit opening

BEMIDJI -- Watermark Art Center will hold an exhibit opening for artists Thomas Stillday and Vincent Morris from 5 to 7 p.m. with an artists talk at 6 p.m., on Friday, March 6, at Watermark, 505 Bemidji Ave. N. The exhibit is entitled “Wezhichigewaad,” which is an Ojibwe word meaning “makers.” The exhibit will be on display through May 30.

Rooted in rich cultural history, lifelong bead artists Stillday of the Red Lake Nation and Morris of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, push traditional indigenous designs into new compositions and colors, a release said. While keeping the visual language fresh and contemporary, both honor the symbolism and knowledge learned from their elders, the release said. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call (218) 444-7570 or visit .

Alberti to teach ‘Painting Acrylics with a Brayer’

BEMIDJI -- Gallery North instructor Charles Alberti will teach “Painting Acrylics with a Brayer,” from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, March 5, at the gallery, 310 Fourth St. NW. Participants will learn how to utilize a brayer to create geometric patterned paintings on canvas. Cost is $50, all materials will be provided. Class size is limited to six participants, for those ages 15 and older. Pay in advance to reserve a space, checks should be made out to Charles Alberti and mailed to: Gallery North, c/o Charles Alberti, 310 Fourth St. NW. For questions, call Gallery North at (218) 444-9813 or email .

MacKenzie to perform at Bemidji Public Library

BEMIDJI -- Laura MacKenzie will perform at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, at the Bemidji Public Library, 509 America Ave. NW. Using an array of instruments, including wooden flutes, whistles, concertina, bagpipes, gemshorn, and voice, attendees will be given the opportunity to hear and learn about the rich heritage of Celtic music, a release said. MacKenzie has learned from many traditional bearers on both sides of the Atlantic, and has herself been recognized as a Master Folk Artist by the Minnesota State Arts Board, the release said. Attendees will learn how air is transformed into music and what makes the songs and dance tunes truly “Celtic.” The program is open to all ages.

Gallery North to hold drawing class March 7

BEMIDJI -- Gallery North instructor Charles Alberti will teach “Drawing Nature with Colored Pencils,” from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, at the gallery, 310 Fourth St. NW. Participants will learn various colored pencil techniques to create a wide variety of images from nature, a release said. All materials will be provided including a large drawing journal. Class size is limited to 10 participants, meant for those ages 10 and older. Pay the $50 class fee in advance to reserve a spot, checks should be made out to Charles Alberti and mailed to: Gallery North, c/o Charles Alberti, 310 Fourth St. NW. For questions, call Gallery North at (218) 444-9813 or email .


Watermark to host networking, panel discussion

BEMIDJI -- Watermark Art Center will host a public networking session and panel discussion regarding women artists in rural Midwest communities from noon to 3 p.m, on Saturday, March 14, at Watermark, 505 Bemidji Ave. N. The program is inspired by the #5WomenArtists social media movement and challenge put forth by the National Museum of Women in the Arts for National Women's History Month, a release said.

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Watermark Art Center will host a public networking session and panel discussion regarding women artists in rural Midwest communities on March 14. Artists are pictured on top, from left: Delina White, Moira Villiard and Su Legatt. On bottom, from left: Hillary Kempenich and Heidi Jeub. Submitted photo.

Watermark is known for presenting the work of women in the arts as independent and group show exhibitors, as well as those who commission work in Shop 505, the release said. As an arts institution situated in a rural Midwest community, Watermark consistently strives to ensure women are well-represented in contrast to the art world’s gender imbalance, the release said.

The first hour is reserved for meet-and-greet networking opportunities with regional artists and arts organizations. There is no cost to attend. All the galleries and Shop 505 will be open to the public. For more information, call (218) 444-7570 or visit .

Anishinaabe Arts Initiative grants deadline extended

BEMIDJI -- The Region 2 Arts council has extended the deadline for applications for the Anishinaabe Arts Initiative Fellowship Program to March 15. The program is designed to assist the region’s most talented Native American artists in furthering and innovating their work by awarding substantial financial support to fund creative time and/or arts experiences that facilitate depth and advancement in their art form, a release said. The AAI Fellowship is made possible by support from the McKnight Foundation.

Application deadline extended to March 15 with an earliest start date of May 1. Maximum award of $5,000, the funds can be used for, but not limited to:

  • Exploring new directions or continuing work in progress

  • Production costs, materials or equipment.

  • Collaborative or community projects.

  • Travel, research or study to further art interests.

Applications are available online at . For more information, contact Region 2 Arts Council at (218) 751-5447 or .


Rendon to present at HCLL

PARK RAPIDS -- Headwaters Center for Lifelong Learning will present “The Land Feeds Us, Body and Soul” with Marcie Rendon from 1 p.m to 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17, at the Park Theater, 107 Main Ave. S. Rendon will discuss her writings and how her Ojibwe heritage has shaped her stories and life, a release said. Rendon is a community arts activist, supports other native artists, writers and creators to pursue their art, a release said. The program is free, open to the public and handicap accessible.

First City Dance to host fundraising dinner show

BEMIDJI -- First City Dance Studio will host their competition fundraiser at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 19, at The National Guard Armory, 1430 23rd St. NW. The event will include a spaghetti dinner, a dance show and silent auction. For more information, contact Lisa Beyer at (218) 751-5425.

Dave Cofell to perform at Headwaters

BEMIDJI -- Headwaters Music and Arts will host Dave Cofell from 6 to 8 p.m, on Saturday, March 28, at 519 Minnesota Ave. NW. Cofell will perform a variety of styles on six and twelve-string guitars and banjo, from original folk and blues to old jazz standards and R&B cover tunes, a release said.

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Dave Cofell will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 28, at Headwaters Music and Arts. Submitted photo.

Cofell draws his inspiration from the worlds of folk, bluegrass, blues, jazz, country and classical music. His performances reveal a mixture of these genres interwoven with humor and wisdom accumulated during his formative years in Central Minnesota and tales of his life on the road, the release said. Tickets are $8 in advance or $10 the day of the concert. There will be a cash bar courtesy of Brigid's Pub. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (218) 444-5606 or email .

Artists sought for 2020 Studio Cruise

BEMIDJI -- After a two-year hiatus, the First City of Arts Studio Cruise will return in 2020 for its 11th year, featuring artists in the Bemidji area. This year’s event will be held Oct. 16-18. Applications are now being taken from artists with studios within a 40-mile radius of Bemidji.

The Studio Cruise is a working studio event which provides an opportunity for artists to invite the public into their studios to showcase their work.


An early bird discount is available for artists whose applications are postmarked by April 1. The early bird artist participation fee is $125. Applications postmarked between April 2 and April 15 will have an artist participation fee of $150. All applications also include a $10 non-refundable jury fee.

Interested artists are encouraged to apply by completing the Studio Cruise application available online at the Watermark Art Center’s website, .

Artists who create their work within a 40-mile radius of Bemidji but who may not have a studio accessible to visitors can apply to be a guest artist at a qualifying host studio location.

Questions may be directed to Kathy Towley by phone at (218) 333-3547 or (612) 219-3394 or by email at .

Upcoming classes announced at Watermark

BEMIDJI -- Watermark Art Center will hold the following art classes in March and April:

Abstract Acrylic Painting: Second Saturday Kids Art in March is all about layers, drips and texture. The class is set for 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 14. Children will explore the qualities of acrylic paint, various ways to apply paint, texture additives and color mixing, the release said. Each child will leave with a finished 11-by-14 inch painting on canvas. Intended for children ages 6 and older. Cost is $15 per non-member child and $12 per member child.

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Watermark will host Stephanie Showalter of Álainn Yarns for yarn dyeing class from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 4. Submitted photo.


Yarn Dyeing With Álainn Yarns: Join instructor Stephanie Showalter of Álainn Yarns for Watermark's Artisan Series from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 4, to learn secrets of the yarn dyeing masters. Learn to recognize different dyeing techniques, how to use professional acid dyes and how to create a watercolor effect, a release said. One skein of sport weight yarn is included. Additional skeins will be available to purchase and dye on site if time allows. Adults only. Cost is $65 per person.

Watermark is located at 505 Bemidji Ave. N. For more information and to register, visit or call (218) 444-7570.

FCLAA to hold Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre

FOSSTON -- Tickets are now on sale for the first ever Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre at Ventures Bar and Grill hosted by the Fosston Community Library and Arts Association. There will be a social hour at 6 p.m. followed by the dinner theatre at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, at Ventures Bar & Grill, 104 Amber Ave. S.

The community is invited to solve the mystery and test their "whodunit" skills, a release said. There will be prizes for the best 1920s costumes and quickest detective.

Tickets are $25 for a regular seat and $35 for a VIP seat. Only a small amount of VIP seats will be sold. Tickets are available at Generations in Fosston, call (218) 435-1676. Proceeds will benefit the Fosston Arts Theater accessibility renovation.

Northern Minnesota Songwriters group to gather March 14

BEMIDJI -- The Northern Minnesota Songwriters group will gather from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 14, at NLfx, 1319 Naylor Drive SE. The event is free and open to the community. Bringing a bag lunch is recommended.

The meeting topic will be notation software with discussion led by Vicki Morrison Goble. Anyone who has experience with notation software is also welcome to share what they know, a release said.

The Northern Minnesota Songwriters group meets quarterly and offers the opportunity for songwriters to socialize, learn, share songs and support each other while polishing their writing skills, the release said. Songwriters at all levels, from beginners to professionals, are invited. At every meeting each songwriter attending is offered an opportunity to share an original song and receive supportive feedback.


Those in attendance are asked to think about what areas of interest they would like to see addressed at future gatherings.

For more information, find Northern Minnesota Songwriters on Facebook, or contact Vicki at (218) 308-8611 or .

Spring Arts Access Grant applications available

BEMIDJI -- Region 2 Arts Council will now accept grant applications for their Arts Access Grant through March 15. The grant is open to non-profits, public and charter schools (parochial schools are ineligible), community education programs, arts organizations, institutions of higher learning, government and tribal entities and groups formed for nonprofit purposes with a fiscal sponsor, a release said.

These grants can support creation, production and presentation of high-quality arts activities, as well as projects that help overcome barriers to accessing high-quality arts activities, and projects that help instill the arts into the community and public life in the region, the release said.

Arts activities proposed for funding must be accessible by the public, have a strong community component, and must benefit the residents of Beltrami, Hubbard, Clearwater, Lake of the Woods or Mahnomen Counties.

Application deadline is March 15, with the earliest project start date of May 20. Maximum award available is $6,000 with a 20% cash match required and 25% match on equipment purchases.

Applications are available online at . For more information, contact Region 2 Arts Council at (218) 751-5447 or

Headwaters to offer music, art preschool classes

BEMIDJI -- Headwaters Music and Arts will host preschool programming through March 24. Mini Musician and Lil' Artist are both eight-session programs that will introduce preschoolers and their guardians to the very basics of music and art through fun, hands-on activities, a release said.


Mini Musician will be held from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. each Monday through March 23. The class will be led by experienced music teacher Leisa Bragg, and will be packed with singing, movement and dance. Children and adults will explore the building blocks of music together through play and experimentation, the release said.

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Headwaters Music and Arts will hold preschool programming from Feb. 3 through March 24. Submitted photo.

Lil' Artist will be held from 3:15 to 4 p.m. each Tuesday through March 24. The program will be led by Diamond Knispel, and will be filled with fun and messy art projects that will introduce preschoolers to basic art concepts such as color and texture while exploring age-appropriate media, the release said.

Both programs take place at Headwaters, 519 Minnesota Ave. NW. Advance registration is required as there are a limited number of spots available. Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. The cost to attend is $100 per child, or $90 for Headwaters members.

To register, call (218) 444-5606 or visit .

Monroe Crossing to perform at fundraising event

BEMIDJI -- Bluegrass entertainers Monroe Crossing will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 18, with 7 p.m. opening performances by No Rest for the Pickers and Julie and Bill Kaiser, at the Historic Chief Theater, 314 Beltrami Ave. NW. Doors open at 6:20 p.m.

Tickets are $25, with all proceeds going to support Headwaters Music Program scholarships.

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Monroe Crossing will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 18, at the Historic Chief Theater. Submitted photo.

Named in honor of Bill Monroe, Monroe Crossing dazzles audiences with an electrifying blend of classic bluegrass, bluegrass gospel and heartfelt originals, a release said. Their airtight harmonies, razor sharp arrangements, and on-stage rapport make them audience favorites across the United States and Canada, the release said. The concert will highlight their most recent CD “Monroe Crossing Plays Classic Country” honoring country legends such as Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash and Hank Williams.

Tickets are available at Brigid's Pub or Headwaters Music and Arts, by calling (218) 444-5606 and online . Admission is open seating and advance ticket purchase is recommended. Businesses or individuals interested in being an event sponsor are asked to contact Headwaters Music and Arts.

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