Weather Forecast



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Performances in

Gregory Park

Park United Methodist Choir will perform at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 14, in the bandstand at Gregory Park in north Brainerd as part of the Concerts in the Park summer series.

The choir will offer inspirational songs.

Concerts in the Park are free for all who attend. Bring your lawn chair or a blanket, relax and enjoy the sounds of the bands performing in the park.

Concerts in the Park will be held every Thursday through Sept. 6. The concerts are a collaboration between the City of Brainerd Parks and Recreation Department and the Lakes Area Senior Activity Center.

The rain out site is the senior center located at 803 Kingwood St., Brainerd.

Watercolor classes to begin

MERRIFIELD — Artist Kathy Kovala of Brainerd and formerly of Nisswa will be starting watercolor classes Thursdays, beginning June 14 at the Lake Edward Town Hall near Merrifield.

Classes will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and the fee is $150 for 6 classes or $30 for an individual three-hour class. Classes are for all levels.

To register contact Kovala at 829-1457, (715) 360-9929 or e-mail at

Christopherson next performer in organ series

Carla Christopherson is the next performer in the Lakes Area Summer Organ Series scheduled at noon June 20 at First Lutheran Church in Brainerd.

Christopherson will play “Toccata in Seven” by John Rutter; “For All the Saints,” arranged by Wayne Wold; “The Lord is My Shepherd,” arranged by Raymond Haan; and “Now Thank We All Our God,” a setting by Albert L. Travis.

A free-will offering will be taken to benefit First Lutheran or a charity of its choice.

Bill Marchel next brown

bag author to speak

The next speaker in the Brown Bag Lunch Summer Author Series will be photographer Bill Marchel, scheduled to speak at noon Monday at the Brainerd Public Library.

Marchel will be talking about the photography he provided for “Birds in Our Backyard: Say Hello to Minnesota’s Feathered Friends.” “In Birds in Our Backyard,” youth discover which birds they might see each season, how far they have traveled, where they build their homes, and what they like to eat. Marchel and author Adele Porter bring to life the world of birds — the colors, the sounds and the wonder of flight. Learn about wild and urban habitats, clever practices in building nests and caching food, and migrating and mating rituals. The book encourages budding birders and naturalists to take a closer look at our feathered friends and the world we share with them.

Marchel of Fort Ripley is a full-time wildlife and outdoor photographer/writer. His slide files contain more than 80,000 images. During the past five years, Marchel has sold thousands of images, including more than 100 magazine cover photos to magazines such as Audubon, Field & Stream, Outdoor Life and Ducks Unlimited. He is a self-taught photographer and stresses that, “I’m an equipment freak and I’m constantly updating my photography gear, but I feel knowledge of one’s subjects is more important in producing good wildlife photos than camera know-how. The basics of photography can be learned rather quickly, but one can never know enough about the outdoors.”

Participants are welcome to bring a bag lunch to the free event. This event is sponsored by the Friends of the Brainerd Public Library.

Benefit concert scheduled Sunday

CROSSLAKE — Chad M. Anderson, a professional singer and actor originally from Brainerd, will be joined by friends to present a benefit concert of Broadway show tunes and pop songs at 7 p.m. Sunday at Crosslake Lutheran Church.

Anderson has performed at The Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in St. Paul, the Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, off-Broadway in New York and at Tokyo-Disney Resort in Japan.

This free-will offering concert will benefit the Mark L. Anderson Endowed Scholarship at Gustavus Adolphus College and the Maureen L. Anderson Endowed Scholarship at Crosslake Lutheran Church.

Useful pots and woodblock prints

AITKIN — Functional pottery and woodblock prints are paired in Ripple River Gallery’s new exhibit, which showcases the work of Jo Severson and Richard James Nelson. The exhibit runs through July 15 at the Bay Lake area gallery, with an artists reception from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday.

Severson, who lives and works in Clearwater, started what she calls her “pottery adventure” in 1970. From mixing her glazes from raw chemicals to throwing the pots on a wheel to firing the stoneware clay and glazes to 2,300 degrees in a gas reduction kiln, Severson performs all the processes involved in making each piece.

Nelson, a St. Paul-based artist, began print making in kindergarten with potato prints. He earned a bachelor’s of arts degree from The College Of Visual Arts in 1991. Specializing in woodblock and linocut prints, Nelson finds inspiration while wandering aimlessly through the forests along Minnesota’s North Shore. Nelson works from his sketches for flora and fauna, and uses a combination of printing, hand-wiping ink, and watercolor applications to retain the immediacy of nature. Instead of using black ink, which is the traditional relief color, he chooses dark brown to echo the earth itself.

The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays and other times by appointment.

For more information call (218) 678-2575 or e-mail


book-signing set

BAXTER — Author Margo Hansen, Bovey, will be available to sign copies of A Newly Weds Series: “Sky’s Bridal Train,” “Jade’s Courting Danger” and “Emma’s Marriage Secret” from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 22 at Bethany Book and Gift in Baxter.

“Sky’s Bridal Train,” the first book in the series takes and takes you back to a time when a wilderness was being settled and men who were staking claims and farming land needed wives but had no time to leave to go find them. One solution was to “order” a bride and Sky Hoffman was one of those brides.

“Jade’s Courting Danger,” the second book in the series, is about the next sets of brides who settle the northern wilderness and discover how God leads in the lives of his children. “Emma’s Marriage Secret,” the third book, follows the second generation of the newly family in a romantic mystery novel that will keep you guessing until the final secret is revealed.

Watercolor exhibit on display at Matthies’ gallery

Artist Jerry Albert will be exhibiting more than 30 watercolor paintings from now until the end of July at the Evelyn Matthies Porthole Gallery in Brainerd, with an artist reception from 1-3 p.m. June 23.

The title of Albert’s exhibit is “Creation Wonders” and includes visual interpretations of birds, nature scenes, still-life objects and specific locations. The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1-3 p.m. Sundays.

In Albert’s artist statement, he said: “My growing up years were spent roaming the woods in southeast Missouri. I was fascinated by what I saw around me in nature and I wanted to paint what I observed. I was introduced to drawing in a biology class drawing fish and crawdads. From that time on I began to express my artistic abilities in many ways.”

Albert was awarded a grant by the Five Wings Arts Council last fall, which gave him the opportunity to study painting.

Children’s Music Camp registration wanted

Educators and musicians from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y., will lead musical exploration in a special children’s music camp taking place July 30 to Aug. 3 in conjunction with the annual Lakes Area Music Festival. Open to children entering grades one through five, a few openings still exist for the educational sessions that will include invigorating, hands-on activities, as well as the opportunity to participate in a special Lakes Area Music Festival concert on August 5. In the 10 a.m. to noon camp sessions, students will explore rhythm, melodic motives and more through art, movement, drama and with instruments.

All activities will take place at Washington Educational Services Building for a fee of $43. The event is being sponsored by Brainerd Community Education and the Lakes Area Music Festival. To register, contact community education at 454-6924.

The Lakes Area Music Festival’s 2012 season will feature a blend of masterpieces for chamber, orchestral and vocal repertoires. Over 80 guest artists selected for their passion and extraordinary talent will be staging the performances. In addition, the annual Prelude Series will take place in July, as well as a varied mix of educational and outreach programming throughout the festival weeks. All concerts will be free of charge and open to the public. For more information about the concert schedule, visit or follow the organization on Facebook.

Exhibitors wanted

LITTLE FALLS — The Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls is looking for booth exhibitors for the sixth annual 2012 Green Fair Folk Festival scheduled Aug. 1 at the St. Francis Convent in Little Falls.

The Green Fair Folk Festival, an event of universal ecological awareness, is free, open to the public and is sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls.

For more information on the event or to become a booth exhibitor, pre-register by June 30 by contacting Anne Heisick at (320) 632-0614 or visit

Jopp’s single

to hit iTunes

“Karaoke Battle USA” champion Cassandra Mae Jopp — who attended third through eighth grade in the Crosby-Ironton School District and then spent a half semester at Brainerd High School her junior year — will have her single “UNDONE” hit iTunes Tuesday.

Jopp, whose signature song is “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey, can be followed on Facebook or Twitter.

“Back to Fifties” benefit scheduled June 23

WALKER — The Leech Lake Area Watershed Foundation and Northern Lights Event Center are sponsoring a “Back to the Fifties” dinner/dance June 23 at Northern Lights Event Center in Walker. The event is a benefit for the region’s natural resources.

The Whitesidewalls Rock “n” Roll Revue, the Midwest’s ultimate 1950s and 1960s rock and roll show band, will entertain with music born along with the baby boomers and still enjoyed by all ages.

Social hour starts at 5:30 p.m., with wine tasting and beer sampling from the Leech Lake Brewing Company; raffle and prize drawings; a “Fifties” buffet dinner at 6:30 p.m. and dancing to the Whitesidewalls starting at 7 p.m. There will be a dance contest.

Tickets are $50, with $35 as a tax-deductible contribution to the Leech Lake Area Watershed Foundation to support its work in protecting the water, woods, and wildlife of the Leech Lake watershed.

Since 1995, the foundation has protected more than 18 miles of critical shorelands in Cass and Hubbard counties through acquisition of lands placed in public ownership with the DNR and by facilitating conservation easement on private lands. Noted projects include the Mule Lake Wildlife Management Area, the Lantern Bay Protection Project, Kabekona Aquatic Management Area, and protection of Muskie spawning areas on Leech Lake. Through state Legacy Funds and funding from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund (lottery money), the foundation will be able to place another 10 miles of critical shoreland in protection status by 2014 for the benefit of fish and wildlife habitat and water quality.

Tickets to the event can be purchased online at http:/ or at the Northern Lights Gift Shop in Walker.

For more information, call (218) 675-5773 or see “Upcoming Events” at

Fourth annual Celtic Festival on the Farm scheduled

The fourth annual Celtic Festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. July 21 at The Farm on St. Mathias.

The Farm on St. Mathias is partnering with the Center for Irish Music and its affiliates. This year’s line-up has been expanded to include additional Irish and Scottish music, literary artists and more. Live entertainment on the main stage by the Hounds of Finn, the Gunn Slingers, Rumgumption, Center for Irish Music student musicians with Live Ireland’s Singer of the Year Norah Rendell, all emceed by Welsh storyteller John Dingley. Special guests are author Erin Hart and TG4 Gradam Ceoil Traditional Composer of the Year Paddy O’Brien who will be speaking on Irish topics.

Traditional Celtic craft demonstrations of sheep shearing, fiber spinning, dying and weaving. Demonstrations include stone splitting, blacksmiths, metal smiths, fiber spinners and the Blue Ox Brewers Society, brewers of fine brews using locally grown hops at the farm. Learn traditional ceili dances from Danielle Enblom.

Activities for children include face painting and a special music show. Don’t forget to visit the Alpacas of Whistling Wind Farm. Mr. Fun will be on hand to teach skill toys and entertain children of all ages, including a kiddie parade.

The Farm on St. Mathias also is partnering with Finnegans that will support the Emergency Foodshelf Network’s Harvest for the Hungry program. All proceeds from Finnegans at the festival will be donated to the Harvest for the Hungry. Finnegans is “turning beer into food.”

Admission at the gate is $8 for ages 12 and up, $4 for children ages 3-11 and free for children age 2 and under.

‘Taste of Broadway IV’

WALKER — Rehearsals will begin at 7 p.m. Monday for the Walker Area Foundation’s (WAF) fourth annual musical revue dinner/theater fundraiser, “A Taste of Broadway IV.” The 2012 event is set for Aug. 20 at Northern Lights Hotel Event Center, just east of Walker.

Rehearsals will be held at 7 p.m. each Monday through Aug. 13. Anyone interested in joining the chorale for this year’s show contact Joanna Aamodt at (218) 224-3562.

“Taste of Broadway IV” will feature a wide assortment of show tunes from Broadway musicals plus American and patriotic favorites performed by the WAF Chorale and guest soloists under the direction of former WAF board member Joanna Aamodt. Soloists in this year’s production include Linda Barber, Barbara Brownlow, Heather Doughty, Rick James, Julie Keiser and Leslie Raddatz.

Songs from “The King and I,” “My Fair Lady,” “42nd Street,” “Gypsy” and other shows will be featured this year along with a number of selections that highlight American composers such as Irving Berlin, George Gershwin and many others. For the second year, a moving salute to America’s military service branches with audience participation will close the show. The stage performance will be preceded by a social hour and dinner.

Accompanying the chorale and soloists will be the incomparable Wayne Hoff on the keyboard. Hoff has shared his talents with Taste of Broadway since the first show and hails from Bemidji where is a mainstay in accompanying vocal and instrumental students at Bemidji State University (BSU), along with accompanying many musical events at BSU. Hoff is often found at The Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji where his musical gifts round out the best in musical performances.

Reservations remain at $50 per person for the Aug. 20th dinner show and are available by calling (218) 547-2865. All proceeds from the show in its endowment fund to benefit the greater Walker area.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
(218) 855-5889