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■ Kapsner exhibition in Little Falls

LITTLE FALLS — The Great River Arts Association (GRAA) will host an opening reception from 6-9 p.m. Oct. 13 of Down by the River, a showing of recent paintings by Charles Gilbert Kapsner. The exhibit will open Tuesday and run through Nov. 3.

Music will be provided by College of Saint Benedict students Annie Rogosheske and Jennifer Keller. Coborn’s Liquor of Little Falls will sponsor a wine tasting.

Kapsner devoted a portion of this summer at select locations on the Mississippi River, and viewers will see a diversity of imagery from this scenic byway. In addition to the paintings, recent works by Kapsner from the Veterans Educational Historic Project will be on display. Drawings and paintings from both the completed Army painting and the Navy will be included.

For information call GRAA at 320-632-0960 or The gallery is opened from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

■ Heartland Poets to meet

Heartland Poets, a chapter of the League of Minnesota Poets will meet from 6-9 p.m. Friday in the large room of the Brainerd Public Library. After a brief meeting to discuss hosting the League of Minnesota Poets Oct. 12-13 at Arrowwood Lodge in Baxter, poets will share their poems-in progress. Participants are asked to bring copies to distribute.

Heartland Poets is free and open to the public. The League of Minnesota Poets is a non-profit organization dedicated to the appreciation and writing of poetry in its many diverse forms. For information about the fall conference go to or call Doris Stengel at 829-9072.         

■ October’s Speaking of

Books program postponed

BAXTER — The Speaking of Books program with Wadena author Paul Sailer, originally scheduled for Oct. 18, has been postponed to Nov. 15 in the Joe Plut Reading Room at Prairie Bay Grill and Catering, Baxter.

Sailer’s book, “The Oranges are Sweet” published by Loden Books, is a story about Major Don M. Beerbower and the men who served with him during World War II. When he died strafing a German airdrome north of Reims, France, on Aug. 9, 1944, he was the leading ace in the Ninth Air Force with 15.5 aerial victories and the commanding officer of the 353rd Fighter Squadron.

The program and reading runs from 4:30 to 6 p.m., and books will be available for purchase and signing.

Those planning to attend may RSVP to 824-6444.

■ SAMC celebrates 10 years of Real Men Sing

STAPLES — The Staples Area Men’s Chorus’ (SAMC) 10th annual festival will be held Oct. 13.

The festival, which provides young men in high school choirs throughout the central Minnesota area the opportunity to work under some of the best choral directors in the state, will provide workshops and rehearsals at noon and then a concert at 7 p.m. at the Staples Motley High School gymnasium. The Staples’ choir books the facility, hires a guest conductor and a voice teacher, buys the music and provides a meal. The festival has been a resounding success with participants and audience members. Participating schools are not limited to bringing only their “best” students; but instead are encouraged to bring all of their male singers to the festival.

Since 2003, REAL MEN SING! has featured more than 2,500 participants. The event has gained notoriety throughout Minnesota and has even been respectfully copied by Lee Nelson at Wartburg College in Iowa.

The guest conductor will be Axel Theimer of Saint John’s University (SJU), and the guest college choir will be his own SJU Men’s Chorus.

“This year’s festival should be huge,” said SAMC director Steve Hoemberg. “We currently have about 70 more men registered for Real Men Sing than last year, bringing our total number of registrations to over 300. In addition to the festival choir of over 300, the concert will also feature a high school chorus of combined men from Osakis and Bertha-Hewitt, the SJU’s Men’s Chorus, the Staples Area Men’s Chorus and top-ranking soloists from the voice clinic.

”I’m especially excited to have Axel here and the SJU men,” said Hoemberg, who is a 2001 graduate of Saint John’s University and was a student of Theimer’s. “For several years now I’ve been trying to get them here and it finally worked in the schedule.”

The festival chorus will include young men from the following high schools: Albany, Bertha-Hewitt, Brainerd, Browerville, Crosby-Ironton, Little Falls, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, Osakis, Pequot Lakes, Pillager, Pine River-Backus, Sauk Centre, Sebeka, Staples Motley, West Central Area and Yellow Medicine East.

For information about REAL MEN SING!, as well as information about other events of the Staples Area Men’s Chorus, go to or visit them on Facebook under “staples area men’s chorus.” Tickets are available online at, at Nelson Insurance Agency in Staples and at the door.

This project was made possible by a grant provided by the Five Wings Arts Council with funds from the McKnight Foundation supplemented with Legacy funds.

■ Mosaic and weaving classes being offered

NEW YORK MILLS — Two local artists will offer mosaic and weaving classes at the Cultural Center’s Continental Divide Folk School in October; Pam Collins, mosaic artist from Staples, will teach the techniques of mosaic art from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 6 and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 20 at the Cultural Center’s new Continental Divide Folk School in New York Mills. Students will leave the class with a mirror or a wall hanging.

Maximum enrollment for the mosaic workshops is eight persons and tuition is $90 for the two sessions and includes all supplies and materials. The class is designed for persons who may not consider themselves artists but want to explore their creative side, or for the experienced artist who has not tried this medium.

Lil McRae from At Loose Ends weaving and yarn shop in Perham will teach the basics of weaving on the rigid heddle loom from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday Oct. 9, 16 and 23. Students will complete a scarf and a table runner during the four class sessions. McRae has looms for rent, $25 for the duration of the class and there are several available for loan at the center. Tuition for this class is $60 for the four sessions plus material cost. By the end of the four sessions, students will have completed a scarf and a table runner and have learned the basics of weaving on the rigid heddle loom.

Register for classes by calling the center at 218-385-3339 and for information on the center go to

■ Brainerd poetry competition

Brainerd poets now have a chance to be the local poetry champion by entering the National Poetry Anthology.

The contest is the biggest annual free poetry competition that is designed to encourage more people to get involved in poetry, so anyone can enter and beginners are welcome. It is free to enter.

The International Poetry Anthology will pick 250 regional winners, give them a free copy of the book and let them vote for the best poem in it.

There will be 250 winners, each representing a town or a region. The winners will be given a free copy of the book and they’ll vote for the best poem in it. The person they vote for will be winner of the title International Poet Of The Year.

The competition is open to all age groups but you can only enter via the website. You can send up to three poems, each one a maximum of 25 lines, including blank lines and 160 words. They can be on any subject. There is no age limit to the competition but people who submit more than one email or more than three poems, will be automatically disqualified. The closing date is Dec. 31.

■ Deuces Wild! Dueling

Pianos to perform at CLC

Grammy Award-winning pianist George Winston has canceled his Oct. 23 benefit concert at Central Lakes College (CLC) in Brainerd due to medical reasons. Winston, 63, was to present a solo concert as a student scholarships fundraiser.

Replacing Winston will be Deuces Wild! Dueling Pianos with David Charles Eichholz and Ted Manderfeld. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 23.

The Waite Park-based artists present a piano variety act offering a Las Vegas-style show mix of comedy, enticing extensive audience participation and featuring an unlikely and surprising mix of music and parodies. Ranging from classic rock to country to rap to show tunes, they do it all, and they do it hilariously.

The Deuces Wild! Dueling Pianos show has appeared throughout the Midwest in performances for colleges and universities, corporations, conferences, weddings and fundraisers.

For ticket information call Pam Thomsen, director of resource development and CLC Foundation, at 855-8129 or email

■ Fall open house set in Aitkin

AITKIN — Ripple River Gallery’s annual fall open house, set for Saturday, is a celebration of the season with a colorful combination of art, apples and fall color. Experience the alchemy of a raku pottery firing, enjoy Celtic-flavored music and hobnob with artists and others who appreciate the creative process — all while learning more about the Wild and Free Wildlife Rehabilitation Program in Garrison. At 10 a.m., ceramic artist Jim Loso, St. Joseph, will begin the raku firing.

This is the 10th year that Loso and the gallery have provided small bisque-fired pots. Participants choose a pot to glaze, then watch as they are fired in a portable gas kiln. Next, in a dramatic display of smoke and fire, the red-hot pots are placed in sawdust and covered to provide the atmosphere that gives the glazes unusual and unexpected qualities. The process will take about 45 minutes.

Pots are available on a first-come, first-serve basis, while they last.

There is no charge for the event, however, donations will be accepted for Will and Free, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public about wildlife and habitat, as well as caring for orphaned or injured wild animals. Veterinarian Debbie Eskedahl heads the volunteer-based program, which provides food, shelter, medical and surgical care to orphaned or injured wildlife under permits from the DNR and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Musician Paul Imholte, known as the string man, will entertain from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Imholte brings a number of instruments to every performance, offering a repertoire that blends bluegrass with Celtic enchantment.

The open house coincides with the gallery’s exhibit of artist-made tiles.

Curated by ceramic artist Karin Kraemer of Duluth Pottery, Superior Division, the exhibit includes work by Duluth-base artists Luke Krisak, Richard Gruchalla, Carrin Rosetti, Jan Andler and Dave Lynas; Jamie Lang, former exhibitions director at Northern Clay in Minneapolis, now working in Denver, Colo.; Mary Jo Schmith, Front Avenue Pottery and Tile Co., Minneapolis; Martye Allen, Lake Nebagamon, Wis.; Marty Pearson, Danbury, Wis.; John Onkka, Baldwin, Wis.; and Josh Blanc (Clay Squared to Infinity), Minneapolis.

For information call 218-678-2575 or email:

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