Thursday, February 23, 2012

Culturology 2-23-12: Sled Dogs and "Rez Life"

by Travis Ryder
Mushing is such a part of North Shore culture that when the John Beargrease sled dog marathon was cancelled, racers banded together to offer an alternate course.  They pulled off the Mail Run race with only a couple weeks of advance notice.  Our producer Amy Clark was on the Gunflint Trail the last two days of January.  She talked with organizer and racer Frank Moe about this effort, and what mushing culture means to him.
Frank spoke to our new correspondent Amy Clark, who produced this piece.  Frank finished second of 12 finishers in the Gunflint Mail Run this January 31st.  He was first to the halfway point, but his neighbor Odin Jorgenson passed him in the second half to take first place.  Racers from up and down the North Shore, Chisholm, Outing, Togo, and the states of Washington and Alaska made up the field on the 120-mile course.

There’s more sled-dogging to be done around these parts: The Mid-Minnesota 150 around Outing and Remer is rescheduled to March 3. Back on the Gunflint Trail, March 9 and 10, it’s the Mush for a Cure fundraiser and noncompetitive sled dog/skijoring event.

David Treuer - courtesy USC
Son of a Holocaust survivor and an Ojibwe tribal judge, David Treuer grew up on the Leech Lake Indian Reservation.  He earned degrees from Princeton and Michigan State and now is an acclaimed author and professor of English at the University of Southern California.  Treuer's latest book, Rez Life, fearlessly delves into the complicated story of what it means to be an Indian today, and how it got that way.  KAXE's Charles Pulkrabek spoke at length with Treuer and filed this scintillating interview.

Thursday, Feb. 23
The Edge Center for the Arts in Bigfork presents the local production of Circle Mirror Transformation.  The play itself deals with an adult acting class.  Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7 and Sunday at 2.

Friday, Feb. 24
Regional bluegrass group Monroe Crossing is at the Sawmill Inn in Grand Rapids at 7:30.  They’ll be at the Crossroads Music CafĂ© in Brainerd for a 7:30 show on Saturday.
Illusion Theater of Mpls brings their production of “My Antonia” to the Central Lakes College theater in Brainerd.  This is a new adaptation of Willa Cather’s novel.  One night only, 7:30 on Friday night.
It's A Taste of Opera Night at Bemidji State University's Thompson Recital Hall.
The 7:00 program will have 12 short scenes with music ranging from the popular operas of G. Verdi and G. Puccini to the lighter operatic music of Gilbert and Sullivan. Fifteen singers will participate in the performance with a reception immediately following.
Independent Film Night is Friday starting at 7 at the Wild Rose Theater.  Two filmmakers will be featured: Spencer Olson of Emily, MN, creates animated films utilizing Legos. The two films to be featured are "Patient 24" and "Bunnies: The Ancient Altercation."  Olson will be present that evening to give a short talk on his animation process. Nathan Fisher of Minneapolis, MN, is a documentary filmmaker who was an integral part of the "Navigating the Aftermath" tour that was hosted by the Fleur de Lis Gallery. His film, "The Unreturned," explores the condition of middle class citizens of Iraq.  Fisher spent many months in Iraq interviewing the subjects of this film. Audience members will have the opportunity to vote for the films they believe should progress to the 2nd Annual Fathom Film Festival scheduled for April 20 & 21 at the Wild Rose Theater.
Saturday, Feb. 25
The "Range of the Arts" series of events gets started this weekend in downtown Virginia.
Saturday from 10 to 2, the Arts International Bazaar is at Kaleva Hall.
Sunday, it's “Circle of Muses,” billed as "a play date for creative women," starting at 5:30 at the Lyric Center for the Arts on Chestnut Street.
Three original bands with Range-area ties are in concert at the Rainy Lake Saloon in downtown Virginia.  The Slamming Doors, Preston Gunderson, and Wuori Free Radio play starting at 8.

Sunday, Feb. 26
The BSU Wind Ensemble & Symphonic Band will perform Sunday at 3 at Thompson Recital Hall in Bemidji State’s Bangsberg Fine Arts Complex.  The concert will consist of several pieces for band, as well as chamber music by BSU Chamber Ensembles. The Symphonic Band’s program will include a Salute to Glenn Miller and “The Minnesota March” by John Philip Sousa. The Wind Ensemble’s program will include “El Salon Mexico” by Aaron Copland, “William Byrd Suite” by Gordon Jacob, and “Strange Humors” by John Mackey.
Tuesday, Feb. 28
Author William Kent Krueger appears at 1 p.m. at Bemidji Public Library, and at the Brainerd Library at 6 p.m.  Krueger writes a mystery series set in the north woods of Minnesota. His protagonist is Cork O’Connor, the former sheriff of Tamarack County and a man of mixed heritage—part Irish and part Ojibwe. The eleventh book in the Cork O’Conner series, “Northwest Angle”, was released on August 30, 2011.
Boreal Brewers Homebrew Class will be from 6 to 9 every other Tuesday starting February 28 at Harmony Food Co-op in Bemidji. March 13 and 27 are the following meetings. The students will learn about ingredients, methods of brewing, and styles of beers. We will brew an English ale and each student will take a share of the brew home at the third meeting.
Wednesday, Feb. 29
Find out how to use the new "Made On The Range" web site created by the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board to get the word out about your artwork.  The First Stage Gallery is the site of the workshop in downtown Virginia starting at 6:30.

Minnesota History Datebook
Feb. 19, 1851 An act signed by Congress sets aside 48,080 acres to support a state university, and the University of Minnesota is first incorporated six days later. 
Feb. 22, 1855 The Mississippi, Pillager, and Lake Winnibigoshish bands of Ojibwe sign a treaty with the U.S. government.  It hands over a major portion of heavily wooded north-central Minnesota. Lumbering companies were keenly interested in the timber there. The treaty establishes the current Leech Lake and Mille Lacs reservations.
Feb. 19, 1902 The pink-and-white lady slipper (Cypripedium reginae) is named the state flower by the legislature (following the discovery that the previously chosen variety of lady slipper is not native to Minnesota). This wild orchid has a brilliantly colored bloom and thrives in damp woods, swamps, and bogs; it would be protected by a state law passed in 1925 that forbids picking the flower.
Feb. 23, 1983 Mark Pavelich becomes the first United States–born National Hockey League player to score five goals in a game when the Eveleth native and member of the gold medal–winning "Miracle on Ice" 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team leads the New York Rangers to an 11 to 3 victory over the Hartford Whalers in New York City.

No comments: