Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sol Fest, Anne Labovitz and the Mermaid

Her paintings will also be featured at Lizzards.
Let’s start with Anne. Tonight the Tweed Museum at UMD is having a homecoming exhibition for artist Anne Labovitz. It must be a pretty big deal because Mayor Ness will be on hand to welcome her and, who knows, might even make another proclamation. The Twin Ports arts community appreciates our mayor’s support, and is likewise honored to have Ms. Labovitz once again showing her work here.

People have been talking up this show to me since March or early April. I have heard a couple of amazing stories about how hard Labovitz works to make her events special for friends and fans who come out and support her.

Yesterday I stopped by Lizzard’s gallery to get a sneak preview of Anne’s paintings that are now on display there. I loved what I saw and especially look forward to the Tweed exhibit. The Tweed opening will feature a new collection of works titled "Composite Portraits." The reception will be from 5:30 till 8:00 p.m. If you’re able to attend you will see some great new work and maybe even make new friends. 

There’s plenty more going on this weekend worth drawing attention to, but I especially want to make a point of noting the Sol Fest that is taking place in Carlton on Saturday, June 15. I know it’s hard to imagine a mermaid swimming around here in the Northland with the weather we’ve been experiencing, but we can cross our fingers and hope Ayla the Mermaid will not only show but will survive the chill as she makes her appearance in the Morning Glory Pool. The event has been planned for months and any sensible event planner would have expected mermaid-caliber weather by this time of year.

The location is Oldenburg House. The event is called Sol Fest. The festival is featuring a lot of exciting names in the music scene along with a number of open air painters and other arts activities.

Festivities begin with a morning music workshop for area high school and college music students. It’s being presented as a partnership with the Oldenburg Art and Cultural Community, PipJazz Youth Program, PipJazz Foundation, the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council conducted at Carlton High School – three blocks from Oldenburg House.

A Labovitz Heart
As an aside here, one of the most impressive aspects of the concert two weeks ago at Weber Hall with Gene LaFond, Scarlet Rivera and Courtney Yasmineh was the time these performers spent with local youth at the Sacred Heart Music Center. By sharing their own skills and life lessons they inspired many young people who have been attracted to the arts through music. Likewise, a major driver behind Sol Fest is this giving back to youth and to the community.

The festival officially runs from 12:30 p.m. to early evening with the following performers lined up from jazz and R&B backgrounds: James Moors, Larry Long, Sheila Raye Charles with Jason Craft, John Penny, Pippi Ardennia, Glenn Swanson and Friends, and multifaceted Ricky Peterson. I’m dead serious when I say this level of performers is an exceptional treat for the North Country. It's an all-day affair with a ticket price so low it's like a gift: $10 in advance or $15 the day of the event. 

Whatcha gonna be doing this summer? The opportunities for diversion are many, but Sol Fest is one you won't want to miss. The property sits adjacent to Jay Cook State Park and is walking distance from center-city Carlton where you can even fetch a bike from Carlton Bike Rental and spend an hour on the Munger Trail if you like.

Meantime, life goes on all around you. Take it in.

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