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'Barefoot' opens today at Long Lake Theater

It's 1964, and newlyweds Paul and Corie are adjusting to life together in a tiny, fifth floor Manhattan apartment in Neil Simon's light-hearted, romantic comedy "Barefoot in the Park."

Long Lake Theater concludes its 11th summer season with "Barefoot in the Park," a winsome comedy by the master of the form, Neil Simon.

Set in the early 1960s, this timeless classic centers on newlyweds Paul and Corie Bratter (portrayed by Brian Hobson of Nevis and Lisa Davis of Park Rapids). Paul is a straight-as-an-arrow lawyer, while she's a free spirit always looking for the latest kick.

After six amazing honeymoon days, Paul and Corie begin their marriage in their tiny, top floor apartment in a brownstone in New York City. Hilarity quickly ensues. Corie's meddlesome mother, Mrs. Ethel Banks (played by Shelly Mahowald), comes for her regular inspections - uh, visits - and their eccentric new neighbor, Mr. Victor Velasco (Brad Livingston), keeps life mighty interesting.

This light-hearted romantic comedy sparkles with lively wordplay and laughs as well as charming characters. Technology may have changed since 1964 , but a newlyweds' adjustment to married life is universal.

"It could be argued that aspects of 'Barefoot in the Park' are dated," said director Andrew Browers, "but the argument that love can conquer whatever big or small stuff you are sweating will never go out of style. Not ever."

Browers is a Bemidji State University graduate. Last summer, he directed "Arsenic & Old Lace" at Long Lake Theater in addition to performing in "The Last Resort" and "Brighton Beach Memoirs."

Performances are Wednesdays at 3 p.m. and Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., from Aug. 8-26, with a 3 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Aug. 19 and 26.

To make reservations, call 732-0099 or visit Tickets are also available at Beagle Books in downtown Park Rapids or Sister Wolf Books in Dorset.

Ticket holders to today's ( Wednesday) opening matinee are invited to a gala at Jewel of the Northwoods Bed &Breakfast following the show to mingle with the cast and enjoy light refreshments.