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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

It's time to Pig Out!

Pig Out on great food and entertainment this Labor Day weekend at the 33rd annual Pig Out in the Park! Wednesday through Labor Day in Riverfront Park, enjoy Spokane's biggest entertainment event of the year with 100 free concerts on 4 stages, 54 food booths serving 255 menu items (none over $9.25) and 3 adult beverage gardens.

Some of the bands are the Yard Birds, Laffin Bones, Kathleen Cavender, Peter Rivera, Chris Rieser and the Nerve, Too Slim and the Tail Draggers, Jr. Cadillac, Hot Club of Spokane, Yellow Dog and the Jubilation Singers, the Northwest Jazz Band, Big Mumbo Blues Band, Men in the Making, Civilized Animal, Trailer Park Girls and many, many more. Yours truly will be the special guest emcee at the River Stage all weekend, so come by, say hi and enjoy some great music!

For a complete listing of all the fun go to

Free Symphony Concerts in the Park - a great Spokane tradition

For many in the Inland Northwest, Labor Day weekend means heading to the park to enjoy a free symphony concert, and this year is no exception. Music Director Eckart Preu will conduct the Spokane Symphony at Pavillion Park in Liberty Lake on Saturday, Sept. 1 at 6 pm, and at Comstock Park, located on Spokane's South Hill, on Monday, Sept. 3 at 6 pm. For the thousands that bring lawn chairs and picnic dinners to these events, the concerts mark the end of summer and the start of another fabulous season.

The Labor Day concert in Comstock Park draws as many as 8,000 visitors to hear the Spokane Symphony perform under the distinctive white shell. While admission is free, the concert cost the Symphony organization more than $36,000 to stage. Sponsors traditionally underwrote the majority of these costs, but as the nation's economy suffered, so did sponsorship dollars; in 2010 the concert was cancelled. In stepped Sterling Bank with an exclusive, three-year sponsorship of the Comstock Park Concert for the community. This is the second year we are enjoying the fruits of their generosity.

The performance at Liberty Lake is paid for by Friends of Pavillion Park.

Both performances will feature a program of patriotic tunes, light classics, and popular favorites. They include selections by Wagner, Rimsky-Korsakov and Preu, music from World of Warcraft, film scores by Korngold and John Williams, and of course, Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture. The concert selections are so diverse, there is sure to be something for everyone!

The Comstock Park concert will also include numerous activities for children and parents alike. The Instrument Petting Zoo gives kids a chance to find their favorite instrument and give it a try, while parents enjoy displays from different arts organizations in the Fall Arts Preview sponsored by the Spokane Folklore Society. City of Spokane ordinance prohibits alcohol consumption in City owned parks.

Always great entertainment at Interplayers

Interplayers Theatre opens its season with 'Always...Patsy Cline,' September 13 - October 6 with 27 of the country-pop superstar's hit songs. The show's cast boasts Cheyenne Nelson, one of only four actresses approved by the Patsy Cline estate to play the famed singer, who will travel from her home in Jonesboro, Arkansas to star in the production. Interplayers Resident Artist Caryn Hoaglund-Trevett will play Louise Seger, Cline's fan turned pen pal turned friend who narrates the story.

Interplayers is also importing its director, Ken Urso. Recruited for the show by Artistic Director Reed McColm, Urso will head to Spokane after wrapping up a directing stint in New York City. Mr. Urso graduated from Pace and recently completed work at Inside the Actor's Studio.

But the emphasis will be all Patsy. 'Always...Patsy Cline' tells the singer's story through the eyes of a woman who began a friendship with the singer after a performance at a Houston honky-tonk in 1961. The divorced mother of two and the country music legend started a correspondence that lasted until the star's untimely death in a plane crash in 1963. The play takes its name from the way Patsy signed her letters to Louise, and it lets Louise tell the story of the woman who became the first female crossover country-pop superstar.

A six-piece band will be under the direction of Jim Ryan, who has spent the last few months at the Coeur d'Alene Summer Theatre. He was last seen at Interplayers as the on-stage musical director of 'Sisters of Swing,' last year's holiday show.

Evening performances are September 13-15, 19-22, 26-29, October 3-6 at 7:30 pm, and matinee performances on September 16, 22, 23, 29 and October 6 at 2 pm. Talk Backs will be offered for audience to visit with the cast after the performances on Sept. 13, 19, and 27 in the Gellhorn Gallery. To celebrate the warm evenings and country mood, patrons will be able to purchase barbecued dinners catered by local favorite Just a Couple of Moms from 5:30 to 7:00 before each performance.

Interplayers Theatre is located at 174 S. Howard Street in downtown Spokane. Tickets are available at the box office, or by calling the theatre at 509-455-7529. Tickets are also available through Ticketswest at or 800-325-SEAT.

The Inlander's Annual Manual is here!

The all new, 235 page Inlander Annual Manual is on newsstands throughout the area providing essential information on just about everything there is to do in the Inland Northwest. Shopping, recreation, family, arts, entertainment, nightlife and more is featured in this annual magazine. Also in this year's issue is a section called 'What We Export,' highlighting the crafters, artists, chefs, shops and business people who have found a following far beyond the Inland Northwest.

Gleason Gras! WEST is Saturday, September 1

Former Coug, Steve Gleason played for the New Orleans Saints from 2000-2008. Earlier this year Steve was diagnosed with ALS, considered a terminal neuro-muscular disease. Gleason Gras! WEST is a benefit concert Saturday, September 1 at 6 pm at the Bing Crosby Theater featuring Old Bear Mountain, Emily Wells and Hey Marseilles. Ticketswest has your seats at or 800-325-SEAT.

In all earnestness, you will love this show

The Jacklin Arts and Cultural Center is producing its very first theatrical performance: 'The Importance of Being Earnest,' September 6, 7, 8 at 7:30pm and September 9 at 2pm. Tickets are $15 and there are group discounts available. Get your seats now by calling 208-457-8950 or emailing

Here's a show you will really Heart

Heart, featuring sisters, Ann and Nancy Wilson, has rocked the charts with hits like 'Crazy on You,' 'Magic Man,' 'Barracuda,' 'Straight On' and many more, selling more than 35 million albums. Sold out arenas worldwide have loved their music and now you can too. Heart is coming to Northern Quest Sunday, September 9 at 5 pm. Get your tickets now at

Don't miss the summer's last free concert in Manito Park

This Friday, August 31 is the final concert in the Manito Park Bench Cafe's free summer concert series. Enjoy the acoustic pop-rock music of Trailer Park Girls from 5:30 to 7:30pm. Great food and beverages available for purchase, along with beer and wine provided by No-Li Brewhouse during the concert.

Fly into the Steam Plant for some fun

Spokane's historic Steam Plant, 159 S. Lincoln, is hosting a unique fly fishing-themed First Friday event on September 7, from 5 to 8 pm. The free event will support Project Healing Waters, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping active duty military personnel and veterans through fly fishing experiences. The evening includes demonstrations by world-renowned fly tier John Newbury, from Chewelah, fly fishing paintings by Christina Deubel, photography by Tony Roslund and samples of Dry Fly Distilling spirits and Steam Plant beers. For more information visit

Don't miss this rare show in the spirit of great art

The Art Spirit Gallery at 415 Sherman Avenue in downtown Coeur d'Alene presents a rare and noteworthy collection of 60 portraits, landscapes and still lifes by Medical Lake artist Del Gish, September 14 though October 6. There is and Opening Reception with the artist on Friday, September 14 from 5:00-8:00 in conjunction with the 2nd Friday Downtown ArtWalk. For more information, and to view the exhibit online go to

Home field advantage

The Northwest League of Professional Baseball has announced that Avista Stadium has been named N.W.L. Field of the Year for 2012. Spokane has now won the award eight years in a row and fourteen of the last sixteen seasons. The award is given annually to the team that has the best playing surface and maintains the highest quality field throughout the 76-game season as voted on by N.W.L. managers and coaches.

In addition to the N.W.L. Field of the Year, groundskeeper Tony Lee will also be eligible for the Short Season 'A' Sports Turf Manager of the Year award, which he won in 2001, at the 2012 Baseball Winter Meetings in Nashville, TN.

The Spokane Indians are the Short Season Class 'A' affiliate for the two-time defending American League Champion Texas Rangers. Season Tickets for the 2013 season are now on sale with plans starting as low as $63. Reserve your seats today by calling 509-343-OTTO (6886). Fans can also purchase tickets at the Ticket Office at Avista Stadium during regular business hours or anytime by visiting

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