Music General dancers finish 2019 season

Company Lines from Music General dance studio recently ended its 2019 competitive season, finishing with high marks.

Dancers attended four competitions in the Twin Cities metro area-Celebration Talent Competition, Masquerade Dance Competition, Legacy Dance Championships and Star Systems Talent Competition, taking home 19 first place awards, 17 second place awards and five third place awards. In addition to their high scores and overall placements, the Music General dancers took home the Best of Show award, the highest score of the weekend at Celebration, Masquerade and Star Systems.

Senior Company Line routine "Perm" was nominated for an Industry Dance Award, and senior company dancer Libby Borash was crowned Miss Masquerade and Miss Star Systems. Mini Company dancers took first place overall at both the Legacy and Star Systems competitions.

Pequot Lakes salsa company wins 2 awards

Peppy Pete's Gourmet Salsa of Pequot Lakes won two national awards in February at the fifth annual World Hot Sauce Awards at the Culinary Institute in Baton Rouge, La.

Peppy Pete's took second place in the verde division with its "Roasted Jalapeno Verde" and second place in the black bean and corn division with its "Black Bean & Corn." The competition was Feb. 23 and Jay Ducote from The Food Network was the emcee.

In September 2018, the manufacturing company's "Roasted Jalapeno Verde" recipe won the University of Minnesota salsa competition, and was also grand champion of the event. This led the company to compete in the national event, where 12 countries were represented in the competition.

Pequot presents cast for upcoming production

PEQUOT LAKES-The cast for the upcoming Pequot Lakes Community Theater production of Disney's "The Little Mermaid" has been set.

"The Little Mermaid," is based in a magical kingdom beneath the sea, where a beautiful young mermaid, Ariel, longs to leave her ocean home to live in the world above. Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen's most beloved stories and the classic animated film, Disney's "The Little Mermaid" is a hauntingly beautiful love story for the ages, a news release stated.

With music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater, and a book by Doug Wright, this fishy fable will include songs, Under the Sea," "Kiss the Girl" and "Part of Your World."

A Pequot Lakes Community Theatre production by special arrangement with Music Theatre International, MTI Shows.

This cast is composed of 41 community members. Some names may be recognized from past productions and others are making their community theater debut with this performance. Sylvia Borash will play Ariel; Jacob Hanson, Prince Eric; Erik Paulson, King Triton; Rachael Kline, Sebastian; Josiah Sechser, Flounder; Nolan Reynolds, Scuttle; Lizzie Ortmeier, Ursula; Nicole Rothleutner, Jetsam; Brianna Engles, Flotsam; Maureen Paulus, Windward; Corissa Kerger, Leeward; Sharon Hartley, Grimsby; Patrick Kennedy, Chef Louis; Ben Gordon, Pilot; Kate Davis, Atina; Libby Borash, Arista; Molly Savage, Alana; Autumn Paulus, Aquata; Delaney Larson, Andrina; and Karla Johnson, Adella.

The ensemble cast is comprised of men, women and children of all ages and include: Eddie Binda, M. Hollis Ford, Eric Boyles, Jaydon Friedel, Phyl Bell, Jacob Beckmann, Alex Erickson, Holly Brandt, Susan Langins, Shayna Schmidt, Taisha Linder, Jessie Weber, Abby Pratt, Mackenzie Pratt, Emily Pratt, Cleo Weber, Emma Spiczka, Gianna Sechser, Sarah Maroney, Hadara Schneider and Cara Scharenbroich.

The show runs July 17-27 and there will be two American Sign Language Interpreted performances July 21 and July 26. Persons needing tickets for these performances should book them through community education by call 218-568-9200 and speaking with Lori. Tickets for other shows can also be booked through community education or by going to and clicking the buy tickets link to choose your date and seat. When booking, people should keep in mind there are Saturday matinees.

Author to appear to discuss book

PEQUOT LAKES-Brainerd lakes area author Shirley Greves, who writes under the pen name of Rosemary Vaughn, will appear from 10 a.m. to noon June 8 at the Pequot Lakes Community Library to discuss her new book titled "Penny for Your Thoughts."

The book is a sequel to her award-winning debut novel "Love on the Misty Isles."

At the event, Vaughn will discuss her new novel and answer questions about both books, their connection to one another, her writing process and background.

Vaughn was born and raised on the Canadian prairies. She and her husband lived for two

years on the former Queen Charlotte Islands off the northwest coast of Canada, now officially

known as Haida Gwaii, meaning "islands of the people," a news release stated. Vaughn used this setting for her book "Love on the Misty Isles." The twists and turns of the plot which her readers say make it a page-turner revolve around three intertwining love stories that cross generations, cultures and borders, the news release stated.

"Love in the title, however, refers to more than romance," the author stated in the news release. "It includes the close relationship among friends, the admiration of the Haida First Nation, its culture and talent, and the rugged, pristine beauty of the environment."

A University English Professor summed up the two main themes in the novel, stating "This book has such a fabulous sense of place, that you really feel you are in a unique landscape and community. The interwoven and intergenerational stories make this book more complex and real than the typical romance."

Towards the end of Vaughn's debut novel, three characters discover they all had originally come

from the fictional town of Crocus Plains on the Canadian prairies. In her sequel, Vaughn introduces a new character Penny Ryan who lives in Crocus Plains which becomes the main setting of the novel. Because Penny knew the characters when they lived in her prairie town, the novel becomes a prequel as well as a sequel to "Love on the Misty Isles."

Because her readers had begged for the sequel, Vaughn stated she chose the title "Penny for Your Thoughts" because she was giving the character Penny and her life to her readers for their thoughts while reading.

Vaughn and her family immigrated to the northern plains of the United States in the mid-1970s. One of her goals in writing the sequel was to inform readers about the similarities and differences of everyday life in both countries. The feedback she is receiving has confirmed her achievement of this goal as well as readers being able to relate to the characters' lives on the prairies.

Vaughn spends her summers in lakes area and winters in Florida, thus she has adopted the title of "Pine to Palm Writer."

The author will be available for a book signing, and both novels will be available for purchase.

URock music returns to St. Francis Music Center

LITTLE FALLS-St. Francis Music Center in Little Falls is gearing up for the 14th annual URock music event geared for students in fifth through 12th grade.

Guitarists, drummers, bassists, vocals, keyboards and other musicians who want to be in a band are invited to attend.

This year URock bands will rehearse once or twice a week all summer. The bands will be

formed in early June and rehearsal schedules will be set for each band at the Music Center. Once-a-week rehearsals will be mandatory, however, bands can rehearse as many times as they wish during the week. The final concert will be Aug. 7, as part of the Green Fair

Folk Festival. Participating bands will also have the opportunity to play at the Morrison County Fair and other venues.

Those who want to participate should call the music center at 320-632-0637. A band mentor will then contact you about your experience on an instrument or voice and place the person in a band. Each band will choose a name, have a band poster created and select three songs to perform. All music styles are welcome, from rock to country to Christian, and everything in between.

Young musicians who are questioning if they have the ability to participate are encouraged to

call the center and set up a free lesson with one of the instructors. This is a good way

for new members to gain confidence in their skills, a news release stated.

This activity is 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.

This grant allows URock to be free for all students.

Space is limited and participants need to register in advance. For more information, contact 320-632-0637; info//

Call for Art 2019 Biennial Juried Exhibition at GRA

LITTLE FALLS-Great River Arts in downtown Little Falls announces a call to artists to submit work to the 2019 Biennial Juried Exhibition. Artists working in all mediums throughout Minnesota are invited to enter their work before the deadline of May 31.

The 2017 Juried Exhibition showcased nearly 80 pieces of work from 49 individual artists in a wide variety of media ranging from oil painting to sculpture, fiber arts and photography. The artists featured represented a diverse range of experience levels and come from all across the state

"The Juried Exhibition is truly a celebration of local and regional artists," Sarah Sindelar, GRA program and event assistant, stated in a news release. "It is a prime opportunity for emerging artists and established artists alike to be recognized for their artistic excellence and become familiar with the unique gallery setting at Great River Arts".

The focus during the jury process will be on work representing the breadth and depth of Minnesotan art and a high caliber of execution. Accepted works will be on display at Great River Arts between July 10 and Aug. 31, with a public reception and award presentation set July 12.

Artists may submit up to three works that have been created in the last two years. Entries must be original and not previously exhibited at GRA. Only artists residing in Minnesota are eligible. There is a non-refundable entry fee for submissions. There will be over $500 in awards announced on July 12 and distributed at the conclusion of the exhibition.

For complete details and to submit an application visit

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is funded in part by the Five Wings Arts Council and Legacy Amendment.

St. Francis presents percussion concert

LITTLE FALLS-St. Francis Music Center's Percussion Collective will present a spring concert at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 29, in the Charles D. Martin Auditorium at the Little Falls Community High School. The concert is free and open to everyone.

The Percussion Collective is composed of the St. Francis Percussion Ensemble and the

Junior Percussion Ensemble. Started in 2017, the Percussion Ensemble is the project of two

instructors at St. Francis Music Center, John Tetrault and Amanda Jansen. The teachers found their percussion students were looking for opportunities to play together and really explore the art of percussion playing in a fun and exciting way, a news release stated. The ensemble was so successful it was decided to start a Junior Percussion Ensemble in 2018. This ensemble is directed by Erin Moede, one of the original members of the first ensemble.

Members of the Percussion Ensemble are Erin Moede, Michael Oberton, Jacob Korver, Aidan Kaddatz, Will Jorgensen, Sadie Stalmer and Rayna Udy. Members of the Junior Ensemble are Moede, Rayna Udy, Rhyis Udy, Ava Haggerty, Connor Moede and Guy Clemons-Virnig.

The concert will feature creative uses of percussive instruments in a variety of styles including street percussion, world percussion and reimagined pop/rock covers and jazz standards.

For more information on the concert or the percussion ensembles, contact St. Francis Music

Center at 320-632-0637 or; This activity is 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.