Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Minnesota's Women?

by Maddi Frick

Last Wednesday, I went to the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota’s Status of Women & Girls in Minnesota Road to Equality Tour stop in Grand Rapids, hosted at the Blandin Foundation. 

That was a lot of titles with capitalized words, but to cover the basics, the event looked at information about women in Minnesota about economic, safety, health and leadership topics and compared the data to that of men and women in other regions. 

While I wasn’t up on the specific percentages, most of the data wasn’t surprising- 

  • The wage gap keeps $1 million dollars from the average Minnesota woman over her lifetime 
  • 33% of women in Minnesota report being sexually or physically attacked by mid-life 
  • 55% of Minnesotan women are overweight or obese
  • Only 14 seats of 72 new corporate board seats created in 2010 were filled by women, and those 14 were all white 

The room was packed.  The presenters kept us engaged.  The facts were often sad, but at times hopeful. 

But I have to admit, while fact after fact proved to me that women are still to this day not treated equally in society, there was something else that made me incredibly disappointed in the state of women’s affairs.  Two men came to the presentation.  I’m not complaining that men dared to show up, I’m complaining that only two men cared enough to show up.

This is the root of my frustration with being female in this region.  Feminism is a word that represents an aggressive know-it-all who doesn’t wear a bra.  We’ve moved past the blatant perception of feminism but haven’t replaced the understanding with a definition that suits 2012.  

This is a national problem, but I feel like our region is even more behind than the rest.  I’ve been forced to battle my own stereotypes on the differences between men and women the past few years and find it frustrating to return Up North.  I find more women critical of other women’s looks and more men who won’t clean the kitchen.

It isn’t enough to have equal opportunities in the workplace.  When you meet a little girl, don’t comment on how pretty she is or how cute her clothes are- ask her about her dreams and the books she’s read.  And do the same for little boys.  

A lot of our problems could disappear if we created a culture of knowledge, goals and a good attitude instead of one of segregated roles and stereotypes.

Beat Blog: The Beginning

by Steve Downing, Acting Producer of The Beat

In the first two weeks of The Beat, Northern Community Radio’s Morning Show poem-for-a-day, we’ve featured some very famous, very dead poets with Minnesota connections: Gregory Corso, a charter member of the Beats back in the 1950s; John Berryman, a highly acclaimed poet and teacher when he jumped to his death from a bridge over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis in 1972; James Wright, a Pulitzer Prize winning poet who taught at both the University of Minnesota and Macalaster; and Joyce Sutphen, Minnesota’s current Poet Laureate.

And we’ve included poets who are known (as poets) only to their families and friends.  In time, as this project heats up, you’ll even hear poems written and read by kids who don’t think of themselves as poets. There are really only two criteria at The Beat: 1) the poetry has to be good, and 2) Minnesota has to figure prominently in the poet’s personal story.

An RFP (Request For Poems) is floating around the state now, after a few strategic emails, and poetry is pouring in from everywhere, particularly from established, published poets who are well connected to each other and to the grapevine and who know what a unique opportunity The Beat is. We won’t be able to use every submission, but we promise to look carefully at everything, without bias as to where it came from.

Listen for The Beat after Best Wishes, between 7:30 and 8:00 Monday through Friday mornings. We’ll likely find other times to use it, too. We’re making this up as we go along, in true Northern Community Radio fashion, and the feedback is telling us we’re most definitely onto something

The Beat is funded by Minnesota’s Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Culturology 7/19/12

by Travis Ryder
No one will be bored around here in the next few days unless they want to be.
Jennifer Nelson, Thrones and Easy Chairs

MacRostie Art Center in downtown Grand Rapids has a show of work from artist Jennifer Nelson.  She earned advanced degrees at Grand Forks and Mankato and has been showing her work for more than a decade around the country.  The series of drawings in the current MacRostie exhibition, Rest and Remainder, has been influenced by landscape and literature. Nelson’s current residence in the Great Plains appears through the openness of her compositions and the isolation of the subject matter. The drawings are intentionally spare to create a focus on the objects that are present. In addition, the works function as illustrations for absent stories, leaving the viewer to piece together the “how?” and “why?”  She likes to draw things on stilts and/or make their legs extra long. This morning in the 8:00 hour, we visited with her. 

Sena Ehrhardt Band.  Credit: Charles Walton
There is a music festival coming to the KAXE Amphitheater on Saturday.  We'll hear from one of the exciting, Minnesota-based acts on the Mississippi River Festival bill.  Blind Pig recording artist Sena Ehrhardt is a stunning blues singer by night and a full-time professional in the health care field by day.  She and her band (including her dad Ed on guitar) are touring beyond the Midwest now, propelled by a nationally-released album (the first in a three-disc deal) and a Best New Artist nomination in this year's Blues Music Awards.  We hear a phone interview with her this morning.

Thursday, July 19
The Plein Air project is happening in Aitkin through Saturday.  Paint anywhere in the county now through Friday and bring your work to the Jaques by Saturday.  Works will be displayed in local banks through early August. 
Neil Simon’s “Brighton Beach Memoirs” is staged this weekend and next week at the Central Lakes College Brainerd campus.
The Mississippi Melodie showboat comes ashore with vaudeville-style entertainment in Grand Rapids Thursday through Saturday night at 9.
Tonight through Sunday, the Paul Bunyan Playhouse theater production is “The Dixie Swim Club”, about the lifelong relationships between a group of former college swim team members.
“Nunsense” is at the Minnesota Folklore Theater in Walker this weekend.
Friday, July 20
Poetry at the historic Last Turn Saloon in downtown Brainerd. Poets attending the 25th annual League of MN Poets Woodtick Retreat in northern Minnesota will be performing their poetry. We welcome community to read their poetry also.  Starts at 7:30.
Saturday, July 21
The fourth annual Celtic Festival is in Brainerd, with musical performances from 11 to 6 at the Farm at St. Mathias.
Bemidji has Art in the Park Fine Art and Craft Festival this Saturday and Sunday.  It’s the 45th year for the event, welcoming a hundred exhibitors and many more spectators to the Lake Bemidji waterfront.
The KAXE Mississippi River Festival is a daylong music event under the Rotary Tent next to our studios in Grand Rapids.  This year the featured acts are Dan Newton’s CafĂ© Accordion Orchestra, Ohio emo-country artist Lydia Loveless, Minnesota blues siren Sena Ehrhardt, and honky-tonk guitar master Bill Kirchen.
Sunday, July 22
Bemidji Area Community Band has a concert on the grounds of BSU at 7:00.
Monday, July 23
Rail River Folk School offers an environment-focused mural session.  Several local artists will lead the effort; bring your own painting clothes to the school in Bemidji starting at 5:30 Monday.  All ages can participate.

Minnesota History Datebook
July 21, 1820 Michigan governor Lewis Cass reaches what he thinks is the source of the Mississippi River. Today this body of water is known as Cass Lake.
July 19, 1967 Some of the inner-city unrest around the nation that summer reaches Minneapolis as a crowd throws rocks and sets fires, mostly along Plymouth Avenue.  The riot starts at about 11:30 P.M. and lasts for two nights. 150 national guardsmen are called up to maintain the peace, and the toll for both nights is three people shot, two policemen and one fireman injured, thirty-four people arrested, and four businesses burned to the ground.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Culturology Calendar 7-12-12

Thu., July 12
The Lyric Center gallery in Virginia has their July exhibition opening tonight.  Talicia Honkola’s screenprints and Mark K. Meehan’s photography are featured.  Meet the artists from 5:30 to 7:30.  The gallery is open Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 11 to 3.
Mississippi Melodie Showboat season begins tonight on the banks of the river in downtown Grand Rapids.  Shows run Thursday through Saturday through July 28.
“Nice People Dancing to Good Country Music” is the show at the Chief Theater this weekend, presented by the Paul Bunyan Playhouse.
“Mid-Life Crisis: The Musical” is staged at the Central Lakes College Dryden Theater now through Monday.
Northern Lights Music Festival presents the opera “Pagliacci.”  This production is set on the Iron Range in 1915 and is presented tonight and Friday in Aurora, Sunday in Chisholm, and Monday in Ely.
Fri., July 13
“The Ballad of Lucette” tells the tale of Paul Bunyan’s sweetheart.  Shows are this weekend at the Hackensack Community Center.
This weekend, the Edge Center Theater in Bigfork is offering three performances of “Seussical,” the Dr. Seuss musical.
Sat., July 14
Bagley’s Art in the Park includes juried exhibitors, music and dance performances overlooking Lake Lomond.
Grand Rapids’ downtown art fair is happening on the Central School grounds.
Bemidji Symphony Orchestra performs.  North Dakota singer-songwriter-farmer Chuck Suchy will be featured.
Wed., July 18
For its new exhibit, “The Book As Art,” Ripple River Gallery will feature the work of 11 book artists. The exhibit at the rural Aitkin County (Bay Lake area) gallery opens July 18 and will continue through August 12. A reception is slated from 2 to 4 on Saturday.
Central Lakes College Chalberg Theater in Brainerd is the site for the staging of Neil Simon’s “Brighton Beach Memoirs.”  The production starts Wednesday with performance dates up to July 28.

Minnesota History Datebook
July 12, 1829 Lieutenant Colonel Zachary Taylor ends his command at Fort Snelling, which had begun May 24, 1828. He would later lead the U.S Army in the war against Mexico, and "Old Rough and Ready" would take that fame to the White House. Taylor is the only U.S. president to have spent a significant amount of time in Minnesota.
35 years ago, July 13, 1977, the Iron Range city of Kinney seceded from the Union.  The move was an attempt to receive foreign aid to repair its water system.  The federal government didn’t acknowledge the secession, but businessman Jeno Paulucci did, sending a used police car and a case of pizza.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Culturology 7/6/12: Art all over

by Travis Ryder
This week, the Culturology program went 'bicoastal', with Katie Marshall of MacRostie Art Center in the KAXE studio representing the First Friday arts events in Grand Rapids and Lori Forshee-Donnay of Bemidji Community Art Center on air from the KBXE studio to talk about the First Friday happenings in Bemidji.  They both have opening receptions to envy happening Friday night. 

We also heard about the Northern Lights Music Festival, bringing top-notch classical musicians from all over the world to Aurora.  NLMF director Vida Zupancic is from Aurora and told us about what the festival holds in store fo rthe region, including operatic performances in Chisholm, Ely, and Duluth as well as plenty of music closer to its home base.

Also, there was a sneak peek at a session with Rich Mattson and Germaine Gemberling, both of the band Junkboat.  They'll be at the Iron Range Original Music Association showcase concert Friday, 10:15, at Y'or Mudder's Place in Gilbert.  Mattson plays with The Tisdales Saturday night there as well.

Culturology Calendar
Thursday, July 5
Edge Center Gallery’s 8th annual juried exhibition opens today in Bigfork.  Works from 25 artists are on display.  The juror for the show is Laura Goliaszewski, Gallery Director at Bemidji State University.  The reception is Friday from 5 to 7.  Regular gallery hours for July are Thursday, Friday & Saturday 10 to 4.

Friday, July 6
First Friday events in Bemidji and Grand Rapids.  MN poet laureate Joyce Sutphen is on hand for a sidewalk poetry contest in GR.
Music at the former synagogue in Virginia: Friday, July 6, 2012 at 7:00 pm:  Tenor Yevgeni Shapovalov is currently singing the lead role in the “Northern Lights Music Festival” production of the classic opera “Pagliacci”.  Born in Belarus, but living now in Israel, he is often referred to as “The Golden Voice of Israel.”   He has appeared in leading roles with world-famous opera companies, including the Bastille Opera in Paris and the Metropolitan in New York. He has recorded many gold records, which are sold world-wide.  This is at B’nai Abraham Museum and Cultural Center in Virginia.
Wild Rice Festival is ongoing in Deer River.

Saturday, July 7
North Woods Artisans & Authors, 11-4 at the Forest History Center. See traditional & modern wood & metal craftsmen demonstrate their skills; visit local authors; make a memory & family heirloom to take home; normal FHC admission applies.
Brainerd has a juried art and craft show Saturday in Gregory Park.
The Northern Lights Musicians offer their 4th Annual Performance at the B’nai Abraham Museum and Cultural Center at 7:00. Musicians of all ages, and from all over the world, come to Aurora, MN to study and perform yearly.  Included in the program is Paul Schoenfield’s Trio of Clarinet, Piano and Violin - filled with jazz and rhythms – even a little Klezmer!

Tuesday, July 10
Summer Noon Concert Series: Big Band Music of the 30's & 40's; Swing Delivery; noon at Assemblies of God Church in Grand Rapids; 12:30 lunch.

Wednesday, July 11
Brainerd Public Library hosts the acoustic musical duo Curtis and Loretta at 2 p.m.
Lakes Area Artists Summer Show and Sale: Wednesday thru Saturday, July 11-14, 10:00am to 5:00pm. Live Well Coffee Bar at Journey Community Church cross from A & W in Nisswa.

MN History Datebook
July 2, 1679 Explorer Daniel Greysolon, the Sieur Du Luth, claims the entire region including modern-day Minnesota, for France.  He does the deed by attaching King Louis XIV’s coat of arms to a tree on the shore of Mille Lacs Lake.
July 4, 1868 Dr. Thomas Foster nicknames Duluth "Zenith City of the Unsalted Seas" during a rousing Independence Day speech at Minnesota Point.
July 5, 1928 The Minnesota National Forest is renamed the Chippewa National Forest.
July 4, 1999 A giant windstorm causes heavy damage to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The 100-mile-per-hour winds blow down trees on a ten- to twelve-mile front for a stretch of thirty miles. One person is killed.