Archive for the ‘Lanesboro Arts’ Category

Lanesboro, MN: The “Write” Place!

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Lanesboro, MN is a great place for writers to visit, live, and create! How do we know this? Because of all the great literary happenings in our sweet little hamlet!


Sometimes it’s amazing what you can overlook in your very own backyard. Recently it was pointed out to me that Lanesboro is a haven for writers. And it hit me that a) that person was absolutely correct and b) I should know this is true from personal experience. After all, I’m married to a playwright, who lives and works right here in Lanesboro.

Once a month I perform on “Lanesboro Live” and our producer and host, Damon Prestemon, brings in at least one author each month. I love listening to these fascinating, smart, and witty people as they speak passionately about the stories or topics which have stoked their creative fires, and I try never to miss a chance to add to my personal library when they do a book signing. And it’s wonderful to hear how each author is incredibly moved by their experience in Lanesboro! Authors come here to learn, to experience, to CREATE – just like the dozens of musicians, painters, sculptors, actors, et al who live and work in town. Maybe it’s the natural beauty of the bluffs and the river that inspires. Or the relaxed pace of life we enjoy here.

Yes, Lanesboro is a huge draw for artists of all kinds, but I never before stopped to think about what a mecca this is for writers as well. Just last week, the Commonweal Theatre hosted playwright Mark Brown from Los Angeles to lead audience discussion after a performance of his play adaptation of Around the World in 80 Days. The Lanesboro Arts Center offers up to four two- or four-week residencies from November through May to artists, including poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. And did you know that Lanesboro has it’s own publishing company (Shipwreckt Books), as well as several local authors who have had their works published? We regularly have both local and guest authors speak at the Lanesboro Public Library or do book signings at our businesses.

And, of course, the best place in any community to find new books is the local library. The Lanesboro Public Library hosts local and nationally-known authors for public readings and book signings. And recently our library was awarded a grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council to have a mural painted in the entrance hallway, created by a local muralist working with local volunteers. The theme?  “Libraries Grow Community.” How perfect for Lanesboro!

Until next time,




*Bronze Workshop and Pour (July 18 & 19, 2014)

*”Fiddler on the Roof” at the St. Mane Theatre (July 18, 19, 20 & July 25, 26, and 27)

*Exhibit “Summer Dreams” at the Lanesboro Art Center (through August 10, 2014)

*”Arsenic and Old Lace” at the Commonweal Theatre (through September 6, 2014)

*”Around the World in 80 Days” at the Commonweal Theatre (through October 27, 2014)

*Lanesboro Farmers Market (May through October, 2014)

For more information on these and other upcoming events in Lanesboro, 
please visit and check out our “Calendar of Events”. 


Lanesboro Arts Center is 1 of 3 organizations nationwide to win innOVATION Award

Friday, November 16th, 2012


Lanesboro Arts Center’s St. Mane Theatre, with volunteer Bill Swanson at the sound & lights board and a full house for the “Over the Back Fence” Community Variety Show

Lanesboro, Minn. – Lanesboro Arts Center is one of three organizations nationwide to receive a $25,000 innOVATION Award, from Ovation’s Inaugural InnOvation Grant Program.  The award, presented in partnership with Americans for the Arts, is recognizing Lanesboro Arts Center for its role in creating innovative art-based programs which are spurring economic development and revenue growth, as well as community revitalization.  Selected from a pool of 118 applicants nationwide, the innOVATION Awards were presented to Lanesboro Arts Center, Tacoma Arts Program (Tacoma, WA) and Beet Street (Ft. Collins, CO). Read more

Behind the "brain gain:" Ups and downs of going rural

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Posted at 11:43 AM on May 16, 2012 by Jennifer Vogel

MPR News

AdrienneSweeneyMay 2012

“Without a doubt, the biggest challenge of living in rural areas or small towns is economic: making enough money to survive and thrive,” he wrote. “It’s very unlikely a high-paying job will even exist, let alone be handed to you. You have to dial down your financial expectations, while at the same time be ready to do whatever it takes to survive financially.”

Whether someone thrives in rural Minnesota seems to come down to priorities, what’s most important in a person’s life. Where some see social and economic restrictions, others see new opportunities to connect with people.

“My community is nothing like I expected and everything that I had hoped,” wrote Adrienne Sweeney, who moved to Lanesboro, Minnesota in 2002 from the Twin Cities and was raised in Philadelphia. “Growing up in a huge city like Philadelphia, I had no idea what to expect from a small (REALLY small) town. What I have found is that it is one of the most artistically creative places I have ever been… To be able to create a piece of theatre and then have an in-depth discussion about the work with the teller at your bank or your server at the diner the next day is a remarkable experience and makes your work feel so much more real and immediate.”

“To be able to participate in a molten iron pour or attend a barn dance or string quartet performance with your neighbors is so inspiring,” Sweeney wrote. “I have been more artistically energized here in this town of 750 than any of the ‘big cities’ I have lived in.”

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Morel Mushroom Season in Lanesboro, Minnesota

Friday, May 4th, 2012


May 04, 2012
By Peter Schuneman, Reporter

Photo courtesy myfox47
Photo courtesy myfox47

LANESBORO, Minn. (FOX 47) — They are the priceless gems of the deep forest… Definitely a sign of spring.  And for those who enjoy Morel mushroom hunting, time may be running out this year.  Put on your hiking boots, it’s time to hunt for Morels… with our guide of course.

One could call Frank Wright a professional mushroom hunter.  Morels don’t grow on trees, especially dead ones.  However, that’s what you want to find if you hope to be lead to the valued fungus.

The forests in southeast Minnesota have been known to produce the finest morels available thanks in part to high levels of limestone.  Wright knows these forests inside and out.

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