Entertainment Briefs — Feb. 3

A roundup of area concerts, shows, book and visual art events in the Brainerd lakes area.

Contributed / Metro Newspaper Service

Visual Flow In New Landscape And Nature Photography exhibition to open Friday

Crossing Arts presents its newest exhibition “Visual Flow In New Landscape And Nature Photography,” by Mark Moser, Crystal Olson and Mike Vogt.

The exhibition blurs the distinction between observed and constructed imagery. This exhibition examines how local photographers Moser, Olson and Vogt stretch the boundaries of traditional photography in nature and landscape settings, to reflect their environmental attitudes, perceptions and values. The images featured in this exhibition depict both raw natural beauty, as well as man-made features found in the landscape.

Opening Friday, Feb. 5, this exhibition will be on display through Feb. 26. Due to COVID-19 and regulations for large group gatherings, there will not be a public reception for this exhibition, but the public is invited to visit the gallery during regular business hours to view the artwork.

This exhibition is funded, in part, by the voters of Minnesota through grants from Five Wings Arts Council and the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

For more information, contact Crossing Arts at 218-833-0416 or . Crossing Arts is a 501c3 nonprofit located in the heart of downtown Brainerd at 711 Laurel Street.


Peppy Pete's Gourmet Salsa wins international award

PEQUOT LAKES — Pequot Lakes company Peppy Pete’s Gourmet Salsa won first place for its mango-habañero salsa at the 2020 International Flavor Awards, which were delayed by COVID-19. Peppy Pete’s took first place last year as well.

Twenty-seven countries competed in the event, which took place Nov. 6 in Madison, Wisconsin.

17th Annual Juried Art Show looking for entries

AITKIN — The 17th Annual Juried Art Show at Jaques Art Center in Aitkin is looking for entries.

The art show will have a "Happy Trails" theme.

Prizes will be awarded in three categories: Fine Art, Sculpture and Photography, plus a student category. Completed entry forms, two pieces allowed per entry, are due by April 6.

Deliver artwork by April 27.

Prizes will be awarded at the public reception at 1 p.m. May 1 at the Jaques Art Center. Download entry forms or inquire for further information at, or call 218-927-2363 Wednesday thru Saturday.

BookEnds online edition to feature author Peter Geye

February's BookEnds online edition will take place at 11:30 a.m. Feb. 13 via Zoom, with Peter Geye, author of "Northernmost."


Geye is also the author of the award-winning novels "Safe from the Sea," "The Lighthouse Road” and "Wintering" and winner of the Minnesota Book Award. He currently teaches the year-long Novel Writing Project at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, where he was born and raised and lives with his family.

Geye received his master of fine arts degree from the University of New Orleans and his doctorate from Western Michigan University, where he was editor of Third Coast.

The Zoom meeting ID is 867 0338 5655. For more information, contact the Wadena County Historical Society at Following the meeting, a recording will be made available at .

BookEnds is a monthly literary event hosted by the Wadena County Historical Society, Travelin’ Storyseller and the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center. These activities are made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Five Wings Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

Babe the Blue Ox sculpture design call for art

The Destination Downtown Coalition, in partnership with the city of Brainerd and The Crossing Arts Alliance, is bringing Babe the Blue Ox to downtown Brainerd.

Nor-Son Construction donated a Babe the Blue Ox statue that’s been at their Baxter office since 2008. After a successful fundraiser of donations from the community to secure the statue and address some much needed repairs, the Coalition is ready for the next step to find artists to design and paint the ox sculpture.

The goal is a community project that adds to the uniqueness of downtown Brainerd. The Crossing Arts Alliance will put together a panel to determine location/placement, find local artists and jury the submissions.

This opportunity is open to all artists residing in Minnesota. Applicants may submit up to three designs for consideration. Submissions should be family friendly and aesthetically appropriate for display in public places. Some examples of the family-friendly criterion include absence of violence, nudity, bias and hate.


The artist chosen for this project will receive a $700 honorarium to help defray material costs and other expenses. Priming and sealing of the sculpture will be provided by project coordinators. The artist will furnish all of the materials and be responsible for the painting of the artwork.

Work will be juried by a committee consisting of the executive/artistic director of The Crossing Arts Alliance, members of the Destination Downtown Business Coalition, employees of the city of Brainerd and community members.

The deadline for submissions is April 15, and the selected artist will have the month of May to work on and complete the design on the ox. The finished piece will be installed in downtown Brainerd in early June.

Full contest information and rules, along with a submission form, is available at .

For more information, contact The Crossing Arts Alliance at 218-833-0416 or .

The Crossing Arts Alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)(3)located in the heart of downtown Brainerd at 711 Laurel St.

'Amplify Your Work' PR primer workshop set

The Crossing Arts Alliance will present “Amplify Your Work: A PR Primer workshop” from 6-8:30 p.m. March 9 via Zoom.

The workshop will be led by public relations professionals Alison Bergblom Johnson and Krista Rolfzen Soukup, who will help participants grow and get noticed as an artist. Artists will learn how to gain the attention of local, regional and national press by establishing an artist public relations toolbox; understand what is “news,” best practices for pitching and when to bend the rules of public relations. Workshop activities include discussion, writing, small group pitching and feedback. This workshop also includes a downloadable workshop outline, workshop worksheet and a sample press release.


The workshop will be conducted via Zoom. The link will be sent via email upon purchasing tickets, which are $20 for Crossing Arts Alliance members and $25 for non-members. Tickets are available at .

Bergblom Johnson is a multidisciplinary artist with performance, lit, collage and installation as part of her practice. Her work engages with such topics as sexuality, mental health and trauma. Her public relations services include development of story hooks and angles attractive to the press, conceptualizing a project to be attractive to the media and press release and press list creation.

Rolfzen Soukup is a publicist in the arts community. Through her expert guidance, knowledge of the arts industry and vast experience, she has supported artists across the country in promoting their work. This year, her clients were featured on the Oxygen Channel, CBS Morning with Gail King, Fox News with Shepard Smith, NPR, BBC, Essence Magazine, USA Today and major newspapers and news sources across the world.

For more information on the workshop, contact The Crossing Arts Alliance at 218-833-0416 or Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to noon the second Saturday of each month. Crossing Arts is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) located in the heart of downtown Brainerd at 711 Laurel St.

Crossing Arts Alliance opens arts scholarship

The Crossing Arts Alliance announced the opening of the application process for its annual arts scholarship.

A $500 scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior from high school in the lakes area (Brainerd, Crosby-Ironton, Crosslake, Pequot Lakes, Pillager and Pine River-Backus). The applicant must be planning to pursue further education in the arts including, but not limited to, visual art, music, drama, speech, literary arts, dance/movement, photography or technology-produced arts.

To apply, applicants must answer five questions listed online at in either a written narrative (no more than 500 words) or presented through a video (3 to 5 minutes in length). The deadline to apply is March 26. Applications and more information is available on the website.

For more information on the workshop, contact The Crossing Arts Alliance at 218-833-0416 or Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to noon the second Saturday of each month. Crossing Arts is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) located in the heart of downtown Brainerd at 711 Laurel St.

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