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Upcoming events March 7-26

Wednesday, March 7

Jess Lourey, author of "November Hunt," will sign copies of her seventh Murder-by-Month mystery from noon to 1:30 p.m. today (Wednesday) at Beagle Books.

The book, set in the tundra of northern Minnesota, follows hunting buddies Tom and Clive, one ending up dead in a hunting accident.

Mira James, former amateur sleuth and soon-to-be private investigator, is hired to inspect the death. Her investigation reveals nasty secrets, incriminating the town's most prominent families...

After the book signing, Lourey will conduct a workshop for aspiring writers from 2 to 4 p.m. today (Wednesday) at the Park Rapids Area Library, a Legacy funded event.

"If you wish to be a writer, write." But how? You've got the great idea, the one that won't let you go, that embellishes itself as you walk around your day. How do you turn that good idea into a great novel, and what do you do with it after you write it? Join author and college professor Jess Lourey for the answers.

Participants will be shown how to go from idea to completed novel in seven steps and receive detailed information on cracking the world of publishing.

This seminar has been taught by Jess in New York City, New Orleans, Bethesda and San Francisco, and now it's coming to "this neck of the woods!"

The workshop is free and open to the public. Bring a writing utensil and a notebook.

Thursday, March 8

Heart o' Lakes Genealogical Society will meet at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 8 at the Becker County Museum.

The meeting is being held by special arrangement with the Becker County Historical Society and is open to the public and anyone interested in researching their family history is invited to attend.

There will be some time to research following the meeting. In case of inclement weather, there will be a radio announcement canceling the meeting. Call Virginia Weston at 218-847-6483 with questions.

Aerie 870 of the Fraternal Order of Eagles will meet at 7 p.m. Thursdays, March 8, 22 and April 12 to consider and vote on proposed changes to the Aerie bylaws.

Friday, March 9

All-you-can-eat fish fry dinners will be prepared for the public at First Lutheran Church of Akeley, served from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Fridays in Lent, March 9, 16, 23 and 30.   

Donations will go to sanctuary renovations.  No reservations are required.

First Lutheran Church (ELCA) is located on the corner of Highway 34 and Pleasant Avenue in Akeley.

Sunday, March 11

The Greater Wadena Arts League announces the beginning of their new performing arts showcase series at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 11 with Mary Harrison in a one-woman play portraying Mary Todd Lincoln, "Pass My Imperfections Lightly By".

The play was written Vaughn McBride.

Mary Todd was from a well-to-do prominent family. She was a mischievous child with a brilliant mind and was unusually educated for a female of that time and place. She became a polished, petite, vivacious young lady who "could make a bishop forget his vows."

Her involvement with Abraham Lincoln raised eyebrows. But she had fallen in love with Lincoln's mind. Mary was a woman who was ahead of her time, and always spoke her mind. But of all of the tragedies in her life, the greatest of all was in the end she was isolated and reviled for having been born a woman with an intelligent, forthright mind in a time and place that punished her for having the audacity to use it.

The Greater Wadena Arts League (GWAL) is a newly formed organization serving the Wadena area with the mission to stimulate, encourage, sponsor, develop, promote and increase the public appreciation of the visual, literary, and performing arts in the Greater Wadena area.

The 22nd St. Patrick's Day roast beef dinner will be served from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Sunday, March 11 at the Guthrie Community Center Ye Olde School Grounds.

Monday, March 12

A blood drive will be held from noon to 6 p.m. Monday, March 12 at St. Johns Lutheran Church.

Call Elayne at 732-3935 to schedule an appointment to donate.

The Mantrap Valley Conservation Club will host a potluck dinner at 6 p.m. Monday, March 12 at the clubhouse.

All members and guests are invited.

A support group for celiac disease will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, March 12 at the Wadena Alliance Church, 1428 Jefferson St.

The free, informational session helps those with the disease learn more about it and what to eat and how to cook using gluten-free flours and ingredients.

A Hubbard County Relay for Life captains' meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, March 12 at Riverside United Methodist Church, Highway 71 North.

All returning teams and any new team captains are encouraged to attend. Those interested in starting a team may also attend.

Team packets, fundraising ideas and online team registration, will be discussed. Those unable to attend or who want more information may call Carolyn at 218-366-1129.

The 18th annual Relay for Life will be held from 1 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, June 15.

Tuesday, March 13

Nevis Red Hat Ladies will meet for lunch at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, March 13 at Bullwinkle's.

For reservations, call Mary at 652-4232.

Headwaters Center for Lifelong Learning expands on its Envisioning the Future programs in a discussion of "Health Care: Innovations and Expectations" with St. Joseph CEO, Ben Koppelman from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 13 in the Northwoods Bank community room, Park Rapids.

Most experts agree there isn't a grand design to health care reform. But a recent task force from the State of Minnesota agreed that preventative care, making costs more understandable and affordable, changing the methods of how we pay for health care as a community, minimizing administration costs and making health insurance more accessible and affordable were priorities.  

The 2008 task force also stated in their report that these reforms should come simultaneously or they would not be effective.

Koppelman will share his understanding of what the future of health services in northern Minnesota holds. Koppelman has served on the Minnesota Hospital Association board for the past three years. Koppelman has received several honors since coming to St. Joseph's in 2006, including being named one of the most promising young healthcare executives in the nation by Modern Healthcare (2009) and recipient of the "Heart of Minnesota Administrator of the Year Award" (2009) by the Health Care Auxiliary of Minnesota.    

Contact LuAnne White at 732-7939 or e-mail for more information.      Friend HCLL on Facebook; HCLL is seeking input on the programs and suggestions for future topics.

Healthy Moms Network will host a chapter meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 13 at the Park Rapids Area Library.  

Guest speaker is Kathy Connell from Redfernfarms CSA.  Connell is a Master Gardener and an organic farm inspector who will share information on seeds.

Some of the seed topics she will cover include hybrids, heirlooms, open pollenated, and the difference between determinate and indeterminate.  

She will explain what it means to be an organic gardener, and provide advice on how to select the best seeds for your purpose.  

All meetings are free, but a freewill offering will be available to thank Connell for her time.

For more information, contact Nicole Guida at 732-5229.

Friday, March 16

Grace Community Church of Osage will host an "Art of Marriage" video conference March 16 and 17.

Friday night's session is from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. and Saturday's is from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Cost of $35 includes workbooks.

For more information or to register, contact Pastor Paul McKibben at 573-3143 or 218-841-9047.

Saturday, March 17

Felting vs Fulling.  Do you know the difference?  

The Twisted Stitchers will be creating small items out of hand-made felt from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, March 17 at Kathy Belt's house.  

Call Kathy for directions at 732-0978.

Multiple performing groups from the Bemidji State University Department of Music will take the stage at the Spring Choir Festival Saturday, March 17.

The festival will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Thompson Recital Hall in the Bangsberg Fine Arts Complex on the Bemidji State campus. 

The Varsity Singers, BSU Choir, Chamber Singers, and the Men's and Women's Groups will be performing throughout the evening.

Some of the pieces to be performed include "Thy Truth Within" by Leland Sateren, "Ascendit Deus" by Jacob Gallus, "In Mirth and in Gladness" by Fredric Niedt, "Gloria" by Jeffrey Rickard, "Our Father" by Alexander Gretchaninoff, "Ye Shall Have a Song" by Randall Thompson, and "Rainsong" by Houston Bright.

More information on the recital is available by contacting the Department of Music at 218-755-2915.

Friday, March 23

Take a step back in time with Virginia Mae Hope, portrayed by Melissa Friedmann of the Minnesota History Players, when she arrives at 1 p.m. Friday, March 23 at the Park Rapids Area Library.

Hope was a pilot and member of the Women Airforce Service Pilots. Her life was short but exciting. Learn what it was like growing up on a farm in Winnebago during the Great Depression and serving as a female pilot during World War II.  

There will be information about the bombing of Pearl Harbor and its national impact, and the changing roles of women during World War II.

The WASP performed wartime duties in the United States, freeing male pilots for combat. Hope was one of only 1,074 women to receive the WASP "silver wings" after completing rigorous training at Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas.

After graduation, she was assigned to the Weather Wing and stationed at Patterson Field in Dayton, Ohio.

Hope was known to say, "Isn't it just wonderful!" about her WASP career, though she and other female pilots faced blatant discrimination because they were women.

Not until 1977, 33 years after the program was disbanded, did Congress recognize the WASP as military pilots or grant them veteran status.

Hope died Dec. 7, 1944, in Omaha, Neb. when the plane on which she was a passenger crashed after takeoff.

"To Save a Life," a movie addressing teen suicide, will be shown at 7 p.m. Friday, March 23 at Menahga Assembly of God Church, located one mile north of Menahga.

There will be popcorn and pop and tacos in a bag served after the movie

Youth 13-18 are welcome.

Call 564-4807 (church) or 320-630-3756 for more information.

The Park Rapids Friendly Squares will host a square dance Friday, March 23 at the Century School.

The caller will be Myron  Hollatz. Donna Stone will cue round dancing between tips. A plus workshop will be from 7:30 to 8 p.m. followed by mainstream dancing.

The club will furnish a potluck lunch after the dance. All square dancers and spectators are welcome.

Monday, March 26

Long Lake Theater announces an open casting call for the June, July and August shows.

Newcomers and all ages and abilities are welcome.

Those interested in performing in the musical are asked to bring a song to sing. Auditions are from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, March 26 or Tuesday, March 27. No appointment is necessary. For more information, call 732-0099 or visit

Long Lake Theater is located 8 miles southeast of Park Rapids.