Entertainment Briefs - Oct. 7

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

Contributed / Metro Newspaper Service

HSO fall concerts to resume virtually

Heartland Symphony Orchestra is pressing forward with its fall concert season, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, by hosting an online program.

With restrictions in place, the orchestra cannot host rehearsals and concerts in person. Music Director Ryan Webber has added other things to the schedule to offer music to people, such as Music Mondays posted on the organization’s Facebook page at . Webber created a compilation of past concert footage for Music Mondays to be debuted Oct. 17.

In addition to selections from Webber's tenure, the concert includes a special appearance and music from Josh Aerie, a Heartland music director from 2009-13. This special program also features Noah Harstad, former Heartland trombonist, performing Arthur Pryor's “Blue Bells of Scotland,” which kicked off the Music Mondays series.

The fall program and the opportunity to support the orchestra can be accessed directly through . This concert, as well as other clips from Music Monday and past concerts, also can be found on the orchestra’s new YouTube channel.

Crossing Arts releases more creativity kits

The Crossing Arts Alliance will distribute creativity kits 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Oct. 10.


The kits will be available on tables in the front of the Crossing Arts building in downtown Brainerd. In case of inclement weather, the distribution will take place indoors. These kits have two art projects, a coloring sheet and more. Creativity kits are free to the public and are limited to the first 200. First come, first served.

The kits are supported by Crossing Arts supporters, a special supporter in memory of John Biederman, and sponsored by MidMinnesota Federal Credit Union. Boys-N-Berries Farm and Greenhouse in Brainerd supplied the miniature pumpkins and Jan Kurtz and her mother provided projects for the bags this month.

This month's creativity kit distribution will feature bags with artwork created from the following artists: Karen Cheney, Taya Person, Martha Davidge, Carla Benjamin, Jacob Cacioppo, Kerry Kupferschmidt and Amy Hubbard.

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

'Following My Creative Compass’ to be on display

The Crossing Arts Alliance presents its newest exhibition “Following My Creative Compass, Works By Paula Jensen” set to open Friday, Oct. 9.

“Following My Creative Compass” is an artistic journey of Paula Jensen’s work and creative process over the last 30 years. Beginning through experimentation in two-dimensional sketching and painting, and later finding a strong connection to metalwork and three-dimensional sculpture, she uses her mastery of technique to express her understanding of herself and the world around her, a news release stated. Jensen's work conveys great beauty through her use of traditional sculpting methods, fine details in each piece, and the overall uniqueness of the medium, but she has an eye for irony, magic, fantasy, and the strange, all things that can be found in her metal sculptures.

The exhibition will be on display through Oct. 31. Due to COVID-19 and regulations for large group gatherings, there will be no public reception. The public is invited to visit the gallery during regular business hours 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday.

Lakes Printing is sponsoring this exhibition.


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 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

2-day virtual writing event set

Lakes Area Writers Alliance presents its virtual 2020 annual conference “Tell Your Story: How to Write a Book & Get It Published,” from 1-3:30 p.m. Oct. 17 and 24.

This two-day virtual event will give authors, wannabe authors and anyone who has a story ready to be told all the tools they need to write, edit, publish and market their book.

The panel of speakers include award-winning and bestselling authors, editors and marketing experts.

Conference includes presentations by Frank Weber, award-winning Minnesota author; Angela Wiechmann, immersion editor; Carissa Andrews, international bestselling indie author; and Doug Dorow, thriller author.

Sign up by going online at . Cost is $40 for both days, $30 for a single day.

Lakes Area Writers Alliance, formerly Brainerd Writers Alliance, is a nonprofit organization of published and unpublished writers at every skill level, who write in a variety of genres.


“We’ve evolved over the past three decades from a small writers club to the Brainerd Lakes Area’s hub for authors in any aspect of their journey,” a news release stated on the group. “We welcome and encourage visitors to come to our monthly meetings to learn more about what we do and how we can bring value to their writing process. We meet the third Saturday of every month, starting at 10 a.m.”

Brainerd author releases ninth book

Brainerd author Travis Casey has announced his latest release, “No Halo Required,” his ninth book.

Casey's previous work includes romance, romantic comedies and suspense novels; and three memoirs about moving to and from Minnesota.

“No Halo Required,” maintains his panache for light-hearted reading but goes into the noir fiction genre. According to a news release, noir works are tales about people, including or especially protagonists who are seriously flawed and morally questionable. The tone is generally about characters whose greed, lust, jealousy and alienation lead them into a downward spiral as their plans and schemes inevitably go awry. The maneuverings of their relentless lust will cause them to lie, steal, cheat and even kill as they become more and more entangled in a web from which they cannot possibly disentangle themselves, the news release stated.

In his past work, Casey generally lets the characters run wild and take the story wherever they wanted to go with it. In “No Halo Required” he kept a tighter rein on the project and dictated the plot, which begs the question, "What plot was he dictating?"

As Casey explains: "I started this book long before the George Floyd tragedy and the racial tension those events sparked. However, when I moved back to America from the UK in 2014, I was amazed at how often the news showed events of people of color being shot by police. Invariably, the news summary followed with 'He didn't do it.' I wondered to myself, 'What if he did do it?' The concept is not new, but as a writer, I wanted to explore what might happen if a man of the community is not all he appears to be."

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