The tenth annual Meander and third annual Meander Opening Night Celebration held on Main Street Granite Falls drew quite a lot of attention and foot traffic to our neck of the woods.
I would venture to say that most everyone is aware, by now, of the goings on had in Granite Falls and of the economic benefit the event brings to this area. So, what I want to share is the "other stuff" that does not receive much attention, isn't widely discussed, and remains largely unknown to those not involved with the planning process.
The Walking Theater production of Granite Falls Saturday Nights! drew a great crowd and offered a positive outlet for several participating community members. And, as history has shown, will further inspire and spur on future community activity.
This production represented the trilogy of work completed, in this community, by Ashley Hanson and Andrew Gaylord of PlaceBase Productions. What many may not realize is the tremendous amount of talent and time invested in any theater production by cast, crew, and countless volunteers. All are to be commended for their commitment and involvement.
Also of note is that ten thousand dollars was raised to fund this production. Donations from several local businesses, organizations, and individuals made it all possible. Yet another reminder of the commitment to community that our local businesses continue to demonstrate time and again. Please return the gesture and support our local businesses. They truly do so much!
Local writer Florence Dacey drew a nice crowd at the K.K. Berge building as she was on-hand sharing her wonderful works as well as that of youth she has been working with in Montevideo.
Another point of interest was the time period / themed window displays created by Korthuis Jewelry and Gifts, Frogs on the Footbridge, Second Time Around, Frozen in Time and Heather's Book Nook and Sew Much More. I strolled along main street last Thursday night during a rehearsal and couldn't help but recognize how much this "little touch" added to the overall atmosphere and the finished product the night of the event. Thank you to these participating businesses and to Todd Hoftieg for his collection of items lent to the Heather's Book Nook window.
The final scenes of the theater production took place above the Legion, which was hopping with activity all evening long. Following the theater production the Echo's, a swing band, played into the evening. Many thanks to GFRR for paying for and hosting the Echo's. What a wonderful addition to the evening's festivities.
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And many thanks to Steve and Linda Virnig, Phil and Mary Kelly, Barb Benson, Nancy Beasley, LeRoy and Ruby Hieb for their many, many behind the scenes efforts not only helping to pull off this event, but also the day of, evening of, and day after. This kind of commitment to community is nothing short of inspiring and so very appreciated. It is folks such as this that have made my job at the Chamber so enjoyable.
And many thanks to the City of Granite Falls and the Public Works department for their support and communications, all participating organizations - Granite Falls Riverfront Revitalization, Granite Falls Historical Society, Granite Area Arts Council, and Clean Up the River Environment. And of course to all the donors and volunteers that assisted in one way or the other.
Thanks for helping to make this third annual Meander Opening Night Celebration so special. What a wonderful boost for this community.