Friday, April 30, 2010

Introducing our final two new roster artists

Win Ratz – enameler
Win Ratz has been practicing the art of enameling for over thirty-five years, as well as working with watercolors, acrylics and collages for fifteen. She is a founding board member of Enamel Guild North East, a member of the International Enamelist Society, the Cheyenne Artists Guild, and the Society of Layerists in Multi-media. Her work has been exhibited and sold at various galleries and museums. Win has taught sixth through twelfth grade students, given public demonstrations and held workshops on enamel techniques, collage and watercolors. She tailors her workshops and techniques to the age of attendees and the time available. Contact: 307-635-7174; e-mail:; website:

Jeffrey Tish – theatre scenic designer
Currently a freelance scenic designer, Jeff Tish earned his B.A. in theatre with an emphasis in scenic design and a minor in costume design from the University of Wyoming. Jeffrey offers workshops to groups and schools in scenic design, construction, prop building, scenic painting techniques and shop organization. He has designed over seventy-five productions in the last twenty years and received the Scenic Design Award at the National Association for Community Theatre in 2007. Jeffrey can travel throughout the state, providing guidance throughout the entire scenic design process for your community theatre or school production. Contact: 307-630-7778; e-mail:

Schedule announced for Cheyenne UU Church "Spring into the Arts" Festival

Cheyenne artist Terry Kreuzer sent this info:

Spring into the Arts Festival Events Schedule
Unitarian Universalist Church of Cheyenne

April 30, Fri., 4:30-6:30 pm, Art exhibits reception for artists Jon & Ginnie Madsen, Laramie painters in the lobby; Cindy Paul, Cheyenne quilter/fiber artist, Sanctuary. Free & open to the public.

May 1, Sat., 7 pm, Abe Minzer, pianist from Colorado, Spring Chopin Concert for 200th birthday. Donations at the door.

May 1, Sat., 9am – 4pm, through May 2, 10 am–1 pm, Social Hall/Gym, Arts & Craft Show & Sale of handmade arts & crafts. Free & open to the public.

May 7, Fri., Emma’s Revolution. We are privileged to host this amazing musical duo. Tickets: $12. Adults $12, $15 at the door.

May 8, Sat., 6 pm, Potluck & 7 pm Dances of Universal Peace & Potluck, Social Hall/gym. Join internationally renowned dance leader Grace Marie, accompanied by live music, in prayerful movement from faith traditions around the world. This is an interfaith celebration so bring your friends. Donation of $5–$8.

May 23, Sunday, 3 pm, Fireants Master workshop. Co-hosted with Cheyenne Guitar Society. Free & open to the public.

May 23, Sunday, 7 pm Concert with Fireants, Co-hosted with Cheyenne Guitar Society.
Performance by Wyoming Arts Council artists' roster group, playing music from dance traditions of the America including,Cajun, Creole, Louisiana waltz, conjunto polkas,
a bolero, huapango, cumbia from Mexico & Colombia, swing tunes, and calypso. Tickets: $12 adults, $8 for students & seniors.

June 1, Tues., Evening of Gratitude and Celebration of Life Music from around the world. Anton Mizerak-synthesizers, harmonica, tablas, vocals; Kim Lorene- vocals, guitar, percussion. Donations will be taken at the concert.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Listen to oral history podcasts featuring Thyra Thomson

From a SPCR preess release:

A series of oral history podcasts of former Wyoming Secretary of State Thyra Thomson are now available on the Wyoming State Archives,

Originally interviewed by historian and author Mark Junge in 1993 for his book, “The Wind is My Witness,” Thomson speaks about her strong advocacy for women’s rights and her life in public office.

“I quickly saw around me in State Government how it was a man’s world, women’s place,” Thomson said. “There were so many things going on in which there was not a justice, and it was natural for me to pursue it not only in Wyoming, but nationwide because Wyoming was the Equality State.”

She first ran for office after the untimely death of her husband, Republican congressman and senator-elect Keith Thomson.

To listen to the podcasts of Thomson or to read the transcript, log onto and click on “oral histories,” then click on “Wyoming stories” for a complete list of oral histories.

Deadline June 7 for Arts Writers Grant Program

The Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant Program supports individual writers whose work addresses contemporary visual art through grants ranging from $3,000 to $50,000 USD.

Writers who meet the program’s eligibility requirements are invited to apply in the following categories:

New and Alternative Media
Short-Form Writing

Deadline is June 7.

For guidelines and additional eligibility requirements, please visit

ART WRITING WORKSHOP In partnership with the International Association of Art Critics/USA Section, the Arts Writers Grant Program offers applicants consultations with leading art critics. For more information, please visit

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New mural in Laramie celebrates history of Latinos and Latinas in Wyoming

On Saturday, May 1, Paredes Hablando - Walls That Speak, will be unveiled by La Radio Montenesa Voz de la Gente KOCA in Laramie. The mural by Stevon Lucero commemorates Latinas and Latinos in Wyoming.

There will be an 11 a.m. luncheon followed at 1:30 p.m. by the unveiling of the mural, with an Artist's Talk by Stevon Lucero, “The Unyielding Process of Chicano Art.” All events at the Alice Hardy Stevens Center, 603 E. Ivinson Ave., Laramie. At 5 p.m., there will be a screening of a film by Yolanda Cruz, 2501 Migrantes, about a population of a town in Mexico that has been forced to leave to find work.

Info: Connie, 742-2842

Sophia Puccini conducts WyoPoets spring workshop in Casper

April 24 was the WyoPoets annual spring workshop, a statewide organization for people who enjoy writing and studying poetry. Participants came from Casper, Sheridan, Buffalo, Glendo, Sundance, Green River, Worland, Douglas, Cheyenne, Colorado and Montana.

Presenter Sophia Puccini from Saratoga led attendees in a game of musical chairs, chair exercises, harmonic chanting, and meditation to "get at a poem." A word gathering exercise in the morning led to a poem being riffed by the class to get another poem, either written with those words and ideas, or a completely different poem. Poets read other poets work, then their own.

Lee Ann Siebken received a special recognition award for her many service years in getting WyoPoets started and working hard for the organization during those years.

Wyoming writer Gene Gagliano (also a WAC roster artist) dontated one his publications, "My Teacher Dances On His Desk" and a drawing was held. Nancy Curtis won the drawing.

The workshop was held at the Hilton Garden Inn in Casper, a nice facility with spacious conference rooms and on-the-spot food service.

The weather was a little dicey all that weekend, but the fireplace in the lobby and poet friends I hadn't seen in awhile helped to chase the chill away.

Visit WyoPoets on the web at
Membership is $20 a year and the organization hosts an annual poetry contest and publishes the chap book, as well as puts out a newsletter.

New literary roster artists

Jason Joyce – poet
Jason Joyce received his B.S in business administration from the University of Wyoming (UW) with a minor in creative writing. For his senior honors project, he developed a poetry workshop comprised of speaking and interactive components that brings a fresh and modern take on poetry in the classroom. He has presented his workshop at the Laramie County Library as part of their youth outreach program, to English classes at Cheyenne East High, and at the Teaching Creativity Conference, partnered by UW and Rutgers University. Jason’s goal is to make words fun, get people excited and rejuvenate poetry for his generation. Contact: 307-220-0634; e-mail:; website:

Rick Kempa – poet and essayist
Rock Springs
Poet and essayist Rick Kempa teaches writing and philosophy and directs the Honors Program at Western Wyoming Community College in Rock Springs. Drawing on a quarter-century of experience as an educator and professional writer, and a lifelong commitment to sharing his love of the written word, he offers one- or two-day workshops custom-designed to meet the needs and experience-level of participants, working with teens, college students, and adults. Rick offers a publishing workshop, which equips more experienced writers with the tools and techniques for pursuing publication, and gives spirited performances of his own work. Contact: 307-389-3127; e-mail: ; website:

George J. Vlastos – writer, poet
Between time spent on his family’s olive farm on Crete, teaching language arts at Star Lane Center, an interdisciplinary problem-based high school in Casper, and his duties as
Young Authors District Coordinator for the Natrona County School District, George Vlastos writes poetry. He has published several collections, including Strophe (1997), Dreams, Grotesques & Hours (2003) and 9 Cross Sections (2005). Previously in WordBand, a former WAC roster artist literary group that performed choral poetry, George approaches the “mythic procession of community and culture” in his workshop presentations, and “the processes necessary to move from thought to written expression.” Contact: 307-237-1031; e-mail:

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Teen Poetry Slam May 7 at Teton Co. Library

Teen Poetry SLAM will be held on Friday, May 7, 6-10 p.m., in the Teton County Public Library Ordway Auditorium in Jackson. The program is free and open to the community with support from the Charles Engelhard Foundation and Teton County Library Foundation.

Teton County Library invites teens to recite poems and perform other forms of verbal expression, including rap, during a Teen Poetry SLAM at 6 p.m., Friday, May 7 at the library. Pizza and snacks will be served.

During the month of April, the library invited teens to submit original poems to the library's excellent panel of judges. Winners of the April contest, celebrating National Poetry Month, will be announced at the SLAM. Contest entries gave a lyrical twist to an array of topics, including grandma, cats, music, love, social customs, school, skiing, rainy days, horses and much more.

For information about teen programs at the library, contact Teen Program Coordinator, Steve Whisenand, 733-2164 ext. 247 or visit online at

Non-Profit IRS filing notice


In the Fall, 2009 issue of WAC Artscapes, Grant Manager Karen Merklin provided information advising small non profits with an annual gross of less than $25,000, that they would have to start filing a 990 Form with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

This link was provided at that time to enable nonprofits to obtain additional information:

We have recently become aware of additional information regarding this new requirement, and wanted to pass it along to our Wyoming nonprofits.

IRS Instructions for Form 990 state that the law now requires most tax-exempt organizations, other than churches, to file an annual Form 990, 990-EZ or 990-PF with the IRS, or to submit a Form 990-N e-Postcard to the IRS. If an organization fails to file an annual return or notice as required for 3 consecutive years, it will automatically lose its tax-exempt status. Beginning in 2010, automatic revocations will start for organizations not filing for the 3rd consecutive year. Orgs that lose their exemption must file income tax returns and pay income taxes.

The New York Times says in a 4/22/10 article entitled "One-Fourth of Nonprofits Are to Lose Tax Breaks" by Stephanie Strom, that as many as 400,000 nonprofit organizations will lose their tax exemption at midnight on 5/15/10, if they have not filed the proper tax forms the following year.

The Wyoming Arts Council does not offer tax advice. However, we do want to help get the word out about this important IRS requirement. Instructions for Form 990 do not specifically list the 5/15/10 due date that the New York Times stated in their article, but it does say this will happen in 2010. We suggest that all nonprofit organizations contact their accountant immediately to ensure the proper forms have been filed with the IRS.

EWC fetes Spur Award winner John D. Nesbitt

Wayne Deahl from Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington sends this invitation:

Please join us this Friday, April 30, from 12:30-2 p.m. in the EWC Auditorium Lobby to recognize author and English professor John Nesbitt. His books recently received two Spur Awards from the Western Writers of America.

The reception is free and open to the public.

John has won a creative writing fellowship from the Wyoming Arts Council and is on the WAC artists' roster.

Here's more info on the awards from John's March 22 blog post:

My novel Stranger in Thunder Basin won the Spur Award for Best Mass-Market Paperback Original. This is a great development for me, as I won in the same category last year with Trouble at the Redstone and was a finalist the year before with Raven Springs. All three of these novels have been published by Leisure Books / Dorchester Publishing.

In addition to winning in Mass-Market Paperback, I had the stunning surprise of also winning in the Best Short Fiction category. My short story "At the End of the Orchard," originally published by Hardboiled Magazine, won here. This story, about 9,000 words, is a mystery/noir piece set in a peach orchard and labor camp in the 1960s.

Meetings being held for comments on Wyoming Tourism Master Plan

From a press release:

Beginning in 2007 with Project Front Door, Wyoming Travel & Tourism (WTT) embarked on a process that would ultimately lead into a Wyoming Tourism Master Plan. We are pleased that we are moving forward through partnerships with Wyoming Game and Fish and Wyoming State Parks and Cultural Resources. An aggressive timeline has been established to have this plan ready to go by the end of this year.

All three agencies see the critical need at this time to design, facilitate, develop and produce a Wyoming Tourism Master Plan (including wildlife, outdoor recreation and cultural resources) to make sure that we are working together for the benefit of our industry and the people of Wyoming.

The purpose of a Master Plan is to present a comprehensive view of Wyoming’s collective tourism products and projects, both man-made and natural, and will include all state, federal, local, private and/or non-profit initiatives. It will also provide a regional and statewide perspective of existing and planned projects. It will substantiate the resources required to develop and market Wyoming’s collective tourism assets. And most importantly, it should set a vision and strategy for Wyoming’s tourism growth through 2020.

The goal of the Tourism Master Plan is:
• To confirm the significance of the tourism industry to Wyoming’s economy;
• To identify a vision and direction for the public and private sectors in marketing and development for the next ten (10) years;
• To assess and define the product development needs of Wyoming, its travel attractions, services, facilities and transportation system;
• To define the roles and responsibilities of the public and private sectors as it relates to the growth and development of Wyoming’s tourism industry;
• To develop an evaluation mechanism to ensure the most effective use of State Resources for tourism;
• To define a comprehensive implementation strategy for tourism growth based on economic research and data.

Wyoming’s tourism industry, either collectively or together, will be able to utilize the ten (10) year Tourism Master Plan:
• As a management tool to prioritize the use of resources to achieve general and specific goals established through the strategic planning process;
• As a means by which to identify tourism industry actions and activities that can benefit Wyoming’s economy and social well being;
• As a means by which to identify critical issues or areas of concern regarding tourism in Wyoming or the activities and actions of Wyoming’s tourism industry;
• As a means by which to identify growth and expansion opportunities for Wyoming’s tourism industry;
• As a means by which to identify opportunities for tourism industry partnerships;
• As an information resource in conducting its individual agency, business or organization planning processes and operations;
• As an ongoing information resource regarding the current and evolving operating environment for tourism in Wyoming;
• As a resource for economic research and data, and a directory of information sources for current tourism related forecasts and trend analysis.

A number of firms were interviewed and our agencies collectively have selected Hank Todd with Hank Todd Solutions Group to develop the plan. Hank is a 35+ year travel industry veteran from both the public and private sectors and he and his team have worked with destinations around the world in strategic planning, industry facilitation/participation, Master Plan development and industry development. We are very pleased to have them as part of our team.

The process will include one on one interview(s) with key stakeholders, focus groups, segmented e-surveys and regional meetings. The regional meetings, scheduled for May, are open to the public and will take place from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and include a working lunch. Please RSVP with Vicki Morris ( or 307-777-2828) if you plan to attend one of the meetings.

May 3, Cody, Buffalo Bill Historical Center, 720 Sheridan Ave.
May 4, Riverton, Sundowner Station, 1616 Federal Blvd.
May 5, Jackson, Teton Science Building, 700 Coyote Canyon Rd.
May 6, Rock Springs, BLM Field Office, 280 N. Hwy 191
May 19, Laramie, Hilton Garden Inn, 2229 Grand Ave.
May 20, Douglas, Eastern Wyoming College, 203 N. 6th St.
May 21, Gillette, Campbell County Rec Center, 250 Shoshone Ave.

The process will review and develop “Best Practices,” provide detailed analysis and recommendations, as well as, plan measurements with the final Master Plan being completed in December.

Much more about this effort will be broadcast via newspapers, radio stations, email and dedicated website. To find out more and to participate in this process, please go to There you will be able to make comments directly into the process find out about participating in e-surveys and get details on the Master Plan process and outcomes.

This is an opportunity for all of us in the industry to help guide the direction we need to take over the next ten years and strengthen our relationships with all our partners at the national, state and local level.

Introducing 2010 WAC visual arts fellowship recipient Penelope Caldwell of Laramie

Penelope Caldwell, "Mail Order Brides Come with Baggage," oil on paper, 90"x52"

At an April 24 ceremony in Casper, Penelope Caldwell of Laramie was named one of three Wyoming Arts Council visual arts fellowship recipients for 2010.

Penelope is an artist and midwife who grew up in Ghana, Argentina and Brazil and has roots in New York City.

In 2005, she graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute with an M.F.A.

Here's the artist's statement she submitted with her fellowship entry:

My art speaks to gender, race and culture. In my painting, I search for that moment when a seemingly impossible constellation of drips and dabs of pigment coalesce into a moment of recognition.

The human figure and issues related to contemporary portraiture are central to my work. The portraits are large works on paper. Through the subject's gaze, these works explore the relationship between the identity of the subject and that of the viewer.

"Jentel Presents" May 4 in Sheridan

From a Jentel press release:

April showers bring May flowers along with a new group of residents to enjoy springtime in Wyoming. Jentel Artist Residency Program is pleased to present this month’s residents in an event open to the public. “Jentel Presents” will take place Tuesday, May 4, 2010, from 5:30 to 7:00 pm at Davis Gallery, Main Street, Sheridan. This month’s presenters include a photographer/videographer, a non fiction writer, an acrylic painter, a poet, a multi media artist and a photographer. “Jentel Presents” is a community outreach program that features visual presentations and readings by the visual artists and writers at the residency.

Presenters include: Juanli Carrion, NYC; a photographer, Juanli enjoys showing how an empty people landscape is full of the entity of the society. He loves to travel and enjoys food; Joshua Garrett-Davis, Brooklyn, NY; a non-fiction essayist, Joshua grew up in South Dakota, which he desperately wanted to leave. Now he is stuck in Brooklyn and he keeps writing about the Plains. Patty Haag, Spokane, WA; An acrylic painter, Patty searches for balance between drama and the ordinary. She is slightly off-balance, never knowing what is going to happen next. Benjamin Jackson, San Francisco, CA; A poet, Ben has had many world adventures, including heli-skiing in Alaska’s Chugash Mountains; Carolyn Law, Seattle, WA; an artist of many media including installation and public art; Carolyn is passionate about how an artist can broaden the way people can experience the world they live in now. Larry Merrill, Rochester, NY; A photographer, Larry was born in the badlands of Brooklyn, where Dodgers roamed free even though he grew up a Yankees fan.

For anyone looking for a stimulating evening, come join the crowd at Davis Gallery, Main Street. There is no admission charge for “Jentel Presents” and refreshments are available.

The Jentel Foundation offers dedicated individuals a supportive environment in which to further their creative development. While at Jentel, visual artists and writers have the opportunity to experience unfettered time to allow for thoughtful reflection and meditation on the creative process in a setting that preserves the agricultural and historical integrity of the land.

The Jentel Artist Residency Program accepts applications twice a year from visual artists in all media and writers in all genres for a one-month residency. A residency includes a comfortable accommodation; common living, dining and recreation areas; a private workspace and a stipend to help defray expenses during the program.

For more information please visit or call Jentel at (307)737-2311.

Flobots perform free concert at UW April 28

From a UW press release:

From Denver, Colo., the Flobots will perform a free concert Wednesday, April 28, at 8:30 p.m. in the University of Wyoming Union ballroom.

The group in 2007 went from an underground hip hop music group to an international phenomenon with their major label debut "Fighting with Tools." The song "Handlebars" became a radio hit in 2008. The Flobots released their newest CD last month, "Survival Story."

Air Dubai, an up-and-coming hip hop group out of Denver, will open the concert. The group takes hip hop to new places by blending genres, sounds and emotions to make heartfelt, believable music.

The show is sponsored by the Student Activities Council. For more information or for Individuals with disabilities needing accommodations, call the Campus Activities Center at (307) 766-6340.

Photo: The Flobots, an underground hip hop phenomenon, will perform a free concert Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. in the Wyoming Union ballroom.

Book arts exhibit at UW's Coe Library

Coe Library hosts a books arts exhibition in Room 506 this week, come check it out! The exhibit will be open April 27-29, with a reception April 27th from 4:30-6:00 p.m. Featured works were produced by UW students taking ART 3500.

L'Avenir en Papier features Suzanne Morlock

If you can read French, you'll know when and where in France Suzanne Morlock of Jackson will be exhibiting her work.

Jackson Hole Fire Festival June 18-20

The 2010 Vista 360 Jackson Hole Fire Festival: Connecting Mountain People will take place from Friday, June 18 through Sunday, June 20, 2010 in the Town Square and other downtown venues in Jackson. The festival is

Friday night will be the Fire Festival, a "cultural sharing" with Mt. Fuji in Japan. This year, the weekend days (Saturday and Sunday) we'll be exploring the mountain culture(s) of the Yellowstone region -- our own backyard. Saturday will be the Yellowstone Food and Heritage Fair, exploring the mountain culture (and flavors!) in our own backyard. And Sunday will be Children's Day -- Japanese and Yellowstone combined.

Contact: Candra Day at

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Visual arts fellowships announced in Casper

Breaking news from Casper:

The judging has just been completed for the 2010 visual arts fellowships sponsored by the Wyoming Arts Council.

The three fellowship winners are Penelope Caldwell, David Jones and Shelby Shadwell, all of Laramie. They each will receive a $3,000 cash award and will be featured in the 2010-2011 fellowship biennial exhibition.

Honorable mentions went to Sue Sommers of Pinedale and Diana Baumbach of Laramie.

Judges for this year's competition were Kate Budd, a sculptor from Akron, Ohio; painter and mixed-media artist Sue Johnson from St. Mary's City, Md.; and Mark Klett, photographer from Tempe, Ariz.

The news will be officially announced at a reception that begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn in Casper. Awards presentation begins at 6 p.m., followed by an artists' roundtable at 7 p.m., which will feature presentations by the fellowship judges.

The event is free and open to the public.

FMI: Michael Shay, Wyoming Arts Council, 307-777-5234 or

Thursday, April 22, 2010

May 8 is deadline for early bird rate for Jackson Hole Writers Conference

This update about the Jackson Hole Writers Conference comes from Tim Sandlin:

May 8 is the deadline to secure the early bird special and your four days of Jackson Hole with notebook in hand, at a great rate.

We just added three new faculty members. Our 2010 team is bigger than it's ever been. June 24-27 will be packed with outstanding authors, editors and agents. We're almost as curious as you are - what will happen this year as these myriad voices, ideas and words start to mingle along the Tetons, pushing your work to new levels.

The newest additions for 2010, totaling 36 faculty, sharing their writing and publishing insights and critiquing your manuscripts, are:
  • Jeremy Schmidt as writer, author or co-author of more than 15 books, and photographer of natural history and adventure travel…

  • Broughton Coburn has worked on environmental conservation projects in Nepal, Tibet and India for two of the past three decades. He has written, edited or collaborated on seven books...

  • Marisa Corvisiero is an author and an attorney as well as an agent. She is the founder of The Corvisiero Law Practice, P.C…. In the last few years Marisa has merged her passions in writing and in the law into her entertainment law practice, and she is now representing authors...

  • Needless to say, we are very excited about the entire lineup for this year including Janet Fitch, Winifred Gallagher, Tim Cahill, Jeff Chu, and many more. See any of these links for our tracks to your distinct interests: Fiction, Creative nonfiction, Poetry, Magazine, and Young Adult; plus Editors & Agents.

    The fee for Early Birds who register on or before May 8 is $355 USD. After May 8, the rate goes up to $385 USD. Your registration fee includes all events at the conference plus a welcome cocktail party and the barbecue.

    If you are a parent, you can register for both yourself and your teen writer! Parent + teen writer fee: $575

    If you are a teacher, one University of Wyoming graduate enrichment credit will be available to those interested for a $40 registration fee. Registration and payment will take place at the conference.


    Gretel Ehrlich will lead Wilderness Writer's Retreat Aug. 6-9

    From a press release:

    Join Gretel Ehrlich and the Wyoming Wilderness Association in a journey into the Rock Creek recommended wilderness in the Bighorn National Forest August 6-9 for adventure, reflection, and writing.

    Wyoming-based author and poet Gretel Ehrlich will lead workshops and readings during the Wilderness Writer’s Retreat. Gretel is an accomplished author of This Cold Heaven, The Solace of Open Spaces, and The Future of Ice, among other works of nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Gretel Ehrlich’s essays, short stories, and poems have been included in many anthologies and publications. She has received many prestigious awards and is currently at work on a novel.

    Are you a writer? All levels and varieties welcome!

    Do you feel comfortable in the backcountry? We will be out for 3 nights and 4 days (with a fabulous camp cook and main camp equipment supplied).

    Can you hike uphill carrying a mid-sized pack for 5 miles? The horses will carry camp in, but you’ll have to pack your personal gear.

    Scholarship Information: Two full tuition scholarships are available for the 2010 Wilderness Writer's Retreat. Successful applicants will have demonstrated financial need in addition to an aptitude and vocation in the field of writing.

    To apply, please submit the following to WWA, PO Box 6588, Sheridan, WY 82801 by noon on June 7, 2010:
  • Your name, mailing address, phone number and email contact information

  • Tax return receipt for 2009

  • One 1,000-word essay demonstrating why your participation in the Wilderness Writer's Camp will have value.

  • An additional sample of your work in the form of poetry or prose, at least 3 poems/pages.

  • Essays and writing samples will be judged for composition and development of style, and winners will be announced by noon on June 28.

    Fee for the Wilderness Writer's Retreat is $700.

    FMI: Contact Sara at the Wyoming Wilderness Association -- 307-672-2751;; 325 E Loucks St., PO Box 6588, Sheridan, WY 82801

    Cheyenne Civic Center upcoming events

    Performing Arts Theater
    Purchase "YOUR" Tickets: 307-637-6363
    Visit our Box Office: 10-5 p.m. Monday through Friday 510 West 20th
    Hope's Alive! A Time of Renewing, Reviving, and Restoring
    Women's Conferences
    Sponsered by Women of Worship
    Kathy Troccoli
    Celebrating 28 years of Music and Ministry
    May 7, 7:00 p.m- May 8, 9:00 a.m
    En Avant Spring Dances
    May 21, 6:30 p.m.
    May 22, 6:30 p.m.
    Mrs. Wyoming Pageant
    May 29, 7:00 p.m.
    Cheyenne Civic Center
    Performing Arts Theatre
    2101 O'Neil Avenue, Cheyenne, WY 82001

    Casper Chamber Music Society & ARTCORE present Susan Stubson and Catherine Viscardi Savery

    Casper Chamber Music Society & ARTCORE
    Sunday, April 25, 2010, 4:00 p.m.
    Our Saviour's Lutheran Church
    Casper, WY 82604
    Adults $12, Seniors $11
    Students/School Teachers $6, 12 & Under $4
    No charge for CCMS Season Ticket Holders
    Pianist Susan Stubson will include works by Debussy, Satie, and a Rachmaninoff transcription of Bach on this recital. Recognizing the importance and relevance of art and music in our everyday lives, Susan is committed to arts advocacy and is a Board Member on the Wyoming Arts Council.
    Catherine Visacardi Savery will sing works by Schubert, Uring, and a set of English pieces. She looks forward to collaborating with Susan Stubson in a program which will have something for everyone.
    Partial funding is from the Wyoming Arts Council, through the National Endowment for the Arts and through Wyoming State Legislature.

    Mural Unveiling: Paredes Hablando

    La Radio Montanesa: Voz de La Gente
    La Radio Montanesa Board of Directors invites you to attend the
    Fiesta Luncheon
    11:00 a.m. with live music
    and unveiling of its mural:
    Paredes Hablando
    Walls that Speak
    by Artist Stevon Lucero
    An Artistic and Historical Depiction of
    Latina/os in Wyoming
    Cecilia Aragon, Ph.D.
    Oralia Mercado
    May 1st, 2010, 1:30 p.m
    Reception to follow and the screening of
    2501 Migrants - 5:00 p.m
    A film by Yoland Cruz
    Alice Hardie Stevens Center
    600 Jvinson St., Laramie, WY

    NIC Fest needs volunteers

    From the Nicolaysen Art Museum in Casper:

    Nicolaysen could use your help with NIC Fest, our summer community art festival that will be held June 25-27. Volunteers are needed to help with setup, logistics, artist check-in, information booths, children’s activities and much more. All volunteers will receive a special NIC Fest T-shirt. For more information or to volunteer as an individual or group, contact Lori Klatt at (307) 235-5247 or For more details on NIC Fest 2010, visit

    East High School's Diana McDougal wins Arts Educator of the Year award

    This comes from Camellia El-Antably, WAC's Arts Education specialist, who's at the annual High School Arts Symposium in Casper:

    Diana McDougal, long-time art teacher at Cheyenne East High School, received the National Art Educators Association's Pacific Region Art Educator of the Year award.

    The award honors "one outstanding NAEA member from each of the four regions for outstanding service and achievement of regional significance during previous years."

    Diana was selected out of a pool of people from the following states: Alaska, Alberta, American Samoa, Arizona, British Columbia, California, Colorado, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and Yukon Territory

    Congratulations Diana! Thanks to Vikki Chenette for sharing this information.

    Celebrate Earth Day at Wyoming State Museum

    From a SPCR press release:

    Twelve organizations will be on hand to teach youth about conservation, recycling, ecology and other outdoor issues during a celebration of Earth Day on Saturday, April 24, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the grounds of the Barrett Building, 2301 Central Avenue in Cheyenne.

    Hosted by the Wyoming State Museum, the Earth Day celebration is an educational family event that will include a scavenger hunt, free t-shirts for the kids, face painting and refreshments.

    Numerous area organizations will have booths on the lawn each addressing various issues related to the environment. Each booth will provide an activity for children.

    Organizations expected to be in attendance are the Wyoming State Museum; State Museum Volunteers; Wyoming Division of State Parks, Historic Sites and Trails; Department of Environmental Quality; Bureau of Land Management; Greater Cheyenne Greenway; and the Laramie County Conservation District.

    Others include Wyoming Association for Environmental Education; Laramie County Community College Range and Wildlife Club; LCCC Wind Energy; Cheyenne Botanic Gardens Paul Smith Children’s Village; and the Girl Scouts of Montana and Wyoming.

    Also supporting the event are KGWN TV; Warren Federal Credit Union; the Wildlife Heritage Foundation of Wyoming; and Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power.

    The event is free of charge and open to all ages.

    For more information about this and other State Museum programs, please call 777-7022.

    Wednesday, April 21, 2010

    Governor's Capitol Art Exhibition opening reception May 21 at State Museum

    Shell artist Karyne Dunbar is one of the artists featured in the 2010 Governor's Capitol Art Exhibition. This is a mixed-media piece entitled "Loss."

    The work will be on display at the Wyoming State Museum in Cheyenne May 8 through June 5.

    An opening reception will be held at the State Museum on May 21 from 5-7 p.m. Governor Dave Freudenthal will be on hand to present this year’s purchase awards. The Bobby Hathaway Juror’s Choice and People’s Choice awards will also be presented. The reception is free and open to the public.

    Overall, this year’s show features 40 artistic pieces selected by juror Deborah Mitchell, director of the Apex Gallery and faculty member in the Humanities Department at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.

    UW English Professor Eric Nye wins Ellbogen Teaching Award

    From a UW press release:

    Anna C. O'Rourke believes the John P. Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award recognizes and honors excellence in teaching.

    "The recipient should be someone who truly understands and strives every single day to fulfill the purpose of excellence as an educator," says O'Rourke, a UW student from Gillette. "This is Eric Nye."

    O'Rourke's opinion is shared by dozens of former students and many of Nye's colleagues, all of whom praise his demanding yet passionate style of teaching.

    Nye, Kent Becker, department head and associate professor in the Department of Professional Studies, and Allen Trent, an associate professor in the Department of Educational Studies, were all selected to receive this year's award, established in 1977 by Casper businessman John P. "Jack" Ellbogen, to "foster, encourage, and reward excellence in classroom teaching at UW."

    A Victorian scholar for the Department of English, Nye has crafted a reputation as a teaching "model" and one of the most important instructors at the university.

    "He fervently believes in the power of literary inquiry to shape students into informed citizens who will pursue the social good. Consequently, he approaches each of his classes with a high seriousness, challenging students to read more rigorously than they ever have before," says Peter Parolin, head of the English department. "Students repeatedly mention in their course evaluations that 'this course was very stimulating and challenging,' or that 'Dr. Nye is tough, but I learned so much about the early Romantic period that it was worth the work.'

    "Any teacher who excites students about pushing themselves beyond their intellectual comfort zones is doing a high order of work."

    Another of Nye's former students, John L. Middleton, echoes Parolin.

    "The difficulty of Dr. Nye's courses is often cited amongst his present and past students. He expects much more from you than the passive recitation of lecture notes," he says. "He wants you to open your mind and to evaluate critically every sentence that is read; nothing should be taken for granted merely because it has appeared in print."

    And Nye, who joined the UW faculty as an assistant English professor in 1983, has only upgraded his level of teaching, says Cedric D. Reverand, a colleague in the English department.

    "Professor Nye has been a well-respected, effective teacher for many years, but I think over the last several years, his teaching has hit a new level," Reverand says. "Students consistently find him stimulating, challenging, helpful and, to use the word that pops up most frequently in his evaluations, passionate about literature."

    Nye is a graduate of St. Olaf College in Minnesota (B.A., '74) and the University of Chicago (M.A., '76; Ph.D., '83).

    Photo: University of Wyoming Associate Professor Eric Nye, center, highlights sections of the first illustrated edition of Milton's "Paradise Lost" with Angela Kisse, an English senior from Cheyenne, and Bob Weatherford of Laramie, a junior in English and Spanish. Nye received the John P. Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award that honors excellence in teaching.

    Who put the "Ws" in "Wyoming Women Writing the West?"

    Wyoming writers and those with Wyoming ties (in boldface below) had a major presence at the recent Associated Writers and Writing Programs' (AWP) conference in Denver.

    Several attendees wrote interesting blogs about some of the conference's Western-themed panels.

    First, this one from High County News' The Goat Blog (motto: "The Last Best Place for a Nuclear Waste Dump"). The header is "Women Writing the West" and it's by Nicholas Neely:

    Over the weekend, I drove to Denver for The Association of Writers and Writing Program's annual conference, which assumed a bit of a Western theme this year. Poets and writers overran the downtown convention center, sampling from a myriad of readings and panels. One of these focused on the challenges women writing west of the Mississippi face, and the change these authors have brought to the Western literary landscape.

    Moderator Alyson Hagy, a Virginian now writing in Wyoming, began the discussion by suggesting women have brought a "certain feminine intuition" to Western writing. Annie Proulx, for one, drew much needed attention to long-closeted issues in her powerful short story collection, Close Range: Wyoming Stories, spotlighting homoeroticism and rape (in the stories "Brokeback Mountain" and "The Mud Below" respectively). "Didn’t it take a female?" Hagy asked the audience. "We don't have men writing that kind of stuff."

    "Western" writing implies a subject matter, the panel agreed, not where you put pen to paper. "In Wyoming, if you aren't writing about the West, you aren't a Western writer," said Hagy. What's more, Western writing seems as much about a certain "high riding, hard living" sensibility as it does about descriptions of sage and steppe. "We can’t disregard how traditions affect us," Hagy said. "What's key is to get outside it and say, 'What am I doing here? What’s really happening in this region?'" She proposed that, in ways, a non-Westerner is better-equipped to be critical.

    Lee Ann Roripaugh, originally from Wyoming and now writing in South Dakota, noted that Western literature's prevailing characters and metaphors seem to be "inherently masculine and colonial" (even, say, in Proulx's writing). In response, Roripaugh is "consciously deconstructing, complicating" as she writes her poetry. Native writer Allison Hedge Coke likewise criticized the Romantic "West" and its literature's emphasis on "pioneerism." "Outside the West," Hedge Coke observed, "there's not a lot of interest in the regular life of the West," which isn't all cowboys and corrals, and stalwart women holding the community together. (Hedge Coke, for one, likes to make her female characters villains.)

    When the panel was asked whether Western women authors have gained prominence and pushed the region's literature forward, there was a resounding "Yes." Debra Earling and HCN contributor Laura Pritchett were cited among the authors tackling un-Romantic topics like single parenthood, teen pregnancy and domestic violence. Roripaugh astutely suggested that seeing progress is, in part, "a matter of categorization." As she said, "I'm from the West, I write about childhood memory, but I'm frequently categorized as an Asian-American writer. I’m also sometimes categorized as a queer writer — though, usually I don’t perform all those identities at the same time."

    But the panel agreed that Western women writers confront immense challenges. Vicki Lindner, also writing from Wyoming, candidly described the pressures she deals with: "I'm probably the only woman [in Laramie] who has never married, never had children. I'm half-Jewish in an all white, Christian place. It's extremely conservative — coming to Denver and seeing the Obama signs still in the windows made me feel all warm and cozy inside." Her transition to the West from New York City wasn't an easy one. "I remember thinking, 'This is not really all it’s cracked up to be.' I had to give up a rent-controlled apartment. I moved to a cabin in Wyoming and lived there for four years — I’m sorry Terry Tempest Williams and Gretel Ehrlich, you can’t say that."

    Overall, the panel drove home the need to be skeptical of what we read, and the way we think, regardless of gender. Perhaps there is such a thing as "Western" writing, but the reality is one of plurality, not the industry's dime-novel, cinematic version. Hedge Coke suggested that the way to make further progress is to keep writing from many perspectives, while remembering "you have the right to tell your own story, and anything beyond that adds to myth making. Anything on top of that is punctuation on the conversation, but not a source."

    Here's Jenny Shank writing about the AWP conference in her books column in New West:

    The first western writer panel I attended was Thursday’s “Writing the West: The Transplanted Writer as Literary Outsider,” with New Mexico-based writers Summer Wood, Robert Wilder, and Uma Krishnaswami, and the Colorado writer Pam Houston. Each person discussed how being East coast transplants to the West affected his or her writing and subject matter.

    Wood said she ended up in Taos when her truck broke down there. She found the Western landscape “intoxicating. “There’s a natural inclination to rhapsodize,” she said, “to write in the key of large.”

    Essayist and humorist Robert Wilder described his Connecticut upbringing as “kind of a Cheever existence.” He feels that outsiders to the West play an important role in the region’s writing, as behaviors and customs that seem unremarkable to Westerners are anything but to those from outside the region. Wilder said his wife is from Wyoming, and that she once took him to a club there where the “stripper had to put her own quarters in the jukebox to play the music,” which everyone from the town considered normal. Observations like this have fueled his comedic writing.

    Pam Houston said, “I’m decidedly from New Jersey. I can assure you that I don’t think of myself as a Western writer. I love the West exactly the way someone from New Jersey loves the West.” She came West to be “a ski bum” and work a variety of “funny jobs.” For example, she said in her twenties, she “led a lot of out-of-shape Texans to shoot sheep in Alaska.” Houston said she wrote no remarkable stories until she started to set her work in the West. “Graduate school taught me how to write, but there would have been no writing without that time outdoors. I was learning how to do it in class, but I was learning what to write from that time outdoors.”

    Houston said she is currently finishing “a book that has 144 very short chapters of less than three pages each, and each one is titled with a place name,” such as Juneau, Alaska, and Marfa, Texas.”

    On Friday I moderated the “To West or Not to West” panel. I was unable to take notes, as I was busy moderating, but some of my favorite moments that I remember are:

    Steven Wingate’s response to my question about how of all regional writing traditions, only writers from the West have a label that is the same name as a genre, the Western, that tends to follow very specific rules, and is sometimes associated with clich├ęd and sentimental writing. Wingate discussed how Western literature arose out of popular Western dime store novels, whereas Southern literature originated from the tradition of great literary writers such as Faulkner, so the origins of these two regional literatures led to different expectations for what readers would encounter in books associated with them.

    Marilyn Krysl discussed the diversity that she sees in the West, and read from her story “Dinner with Osama,” about some unusual practices of Boulder residents. Robert Garner McBrearty discussed his childhood in suburban San Antonio and read from his story “In The Bar.” Colorado native Janis Hallowell described her very Western upbringing, which included a lot of time spent on her uncle’s cattle ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming. Her fiction, however, defies the standard expectations for a Western writer.

    When I asked everybody what they would like Western literature to become, Laura Pritchett quoted from her fine essay “The Girls’ Guide to Myth Bustin’” that appeared in 5280 last year, and called for writers to feature unexpected Western female characters in their works:

    “So I’m making a modest proposal: I want the full spectrum. Especially when it comes to how being out here in the West defines us. I hope women get fair treatment in books and magazines in the near future — ’fair’ meaning that we’re not pigeonholed into one particular way of being. I hope we read about how motherhood just sorta stinks sometimes. And how nonmotherhood stinks sometimes. And about politics, poverty, wealth, sex, sexual orientation, class issues, overpopulation and global warming.”

    Duane Evenson named to Arts Council board

    Gillette Mayor Duane Evenson has been appointed by Governor Dave Freudenthal to serve on the Wyoming Arts Council Board. He will serve a one-year term through the end of June, 2011. The Arts Council fosters and promotes access, education, diversity, and excellence in the arts.

    The Wyoming Arts Council works to efficiently and effectively manage the resources provided by the State of Wyoming, the National Endowment for the Arts and various private sources with advice and guidance from the Wyoming Arts Council Board. The Council envisions a culture in which every citizen is aware of the arts and appreciative of the opportunities the arts present. Services provided to its constituents consist of: financial, technical, informational, and promotional assistance. Constituents include artists and arts organizations.

    One component of the organization is the Governor’s Arts Awards. The purpose of the awards is to recognize artists, arts organizations and patrons who have displayed excellence in the arts and outstanding service to the arts in Wyoming. Over the years, individuals and organizations from more than 20 Wyoming communities and state-wide organizations have been honored for their dedication to the arts in Wyoming. Mayor Evenson was an award recipient in 2009.

    For more information contact interim City of Gillette Public Information Officer Michael Foote at 307-686-5393.

    Bring your art to the AVA Center April 22-26 for 2010 Community Art Show

    Where the Wild(life) Things Are

    From a press release:

    "Show me wild new ways," a wolfish Max commands in an early draft of Where the Wild Things Are. That early vision of the award-winning 10-line story that came to life as an $80-plus million Hollywood movie is just one of 30 original illustrations celebrating Sendak's animal artistry on view in a new exhibition, "Wild New Ways: Maurice Sendak's Animal Kingdom," at the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson May 15-September 19. Works for the exhibition, drawn from the Rosenbach Museum & Library's collection of over 10,000 Sendak drawings, manuscripts and working materials, demonstrate the range of styles with which the artist captures textures of fur, feathers, and scales -- from the precisely drawn pen and ink bats of The Bat-Poet to the soft watercolors of Mr. Rabbit and The Lovely Present.

    From wild things to domestic animals, mythical beasts to common farm animals, Maurice Sendak has included animals of some kind in almost every one of the 108 books he has illustrated. In addition to his nuanced rendering of the animals themselves, he famously delves into themes involving the wild and tame in all of us - in keeping with the National Museum of Wildlife Art's mission of using original art to probe humanity's relationship with nature.

    A complete schedule of museum exhibitions and events is available online at

    Tuesday, April 20, 2010

    Preserve Wyoming 2010 conference will be held May 14-15 in Evanston

    From a Wyoming SPCR press release:

    Have you ever seen the rehabilitated historic hotels and motels in Buffalo? Or, wondered how Powell’s historic downtown building got all their facades redone?

    Have you wondered how your community could use heritage tourism as an income generator? Or, how the windmills of Wyoming relate to the state’s historic trails?

    These questions and more will be discussed during the Preserve Wyoming 2010 Conference in Evanston, May 14-15.

    This biennial State Historic Preservation Office conference will be hosted by the City of Evanston and held in the newly rehabilitated historic Union Pacific Roundhouse and Machine Shop. (Evanston's Historic Depot is shown in photo above.)

    The conference begins with lunch May 14 and concludes with tours of historic sites in the area on May 15.

    Registration is $60 and includes all conference meals, including the annual awards banquet honoring recipients of the Wyoming Historic Preservation and Main Street awards.

    Complete conference information is available online at Registration deadline is May 7.

    For more information, please contact Ashley Rooney, State Historic Preservation Office, 307-777-7566 or via email at

    Western Art & Architecture features Matt Flint

    Lee Gutkind to serve as judge for WAC creative writing fellowships in creative nonfiction

    The judge for this year’s creative writing fellowships is Lee Gutkind.

    Lee Gutkind is founder and editor of the popular journal, Creative Nonfiction, the first and largest literary journal to publish nonfiction exclusively. He is editor of Best Creative Nonfiction, an annual anthology, and author of Keep It Real: Everything You Need to Know about Researching and Writing Creative Nonfiction, both published by W.W. Norton. In all, Gutkind has written 15 books, and edited 18 collections and volumes in the past 25 years.

    His newest book is Truckin’ with Sam: A Father and Son, The Mick and The Dyl, Rockin’ and Rollin’, On the Road, SUNY Press. Now in paperback from Bison Books is Forever Fat: Essays by the Godfather, a memoir. His 2007 book Almost Human: Making Robots Think was published in 2007 by W.W. Norton and release in paperback last fall. During a Daily Show interview with Lee, Jon Stewart called Almost Human “a wild book — a crazy suspense story -- fascinating stuff!”

    Lee Gutkind is currently the Distinguished Writer in Residence at the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes and professor in the Hugh Downs School of Human Communication at Arizona State University.

    At the Equality State Book Festival & Casper College Literary Conference Sept. 24-25, 2010, Lee will read from his work together with the three fellowship winners.

    Applications will be mailed next week to all writers in Wyoming on the WAC mailing list. It also will be available next week on the WAC web site.

    Postmark deadline is June 18.

    For more information, contact Michael Shay, 307-777-5234 or, or visit the WAC web site at

    2010 Equality State Book Festival set for Casper College Sept. 24-25

    In case you haven't heard, the Equality State Book Festival will be held Sept. 24-25 at Casper College. Here are some details from the bookfest web site:

    In 2006, the first statewide book festival, The Equality State Book Festival, was held in Casper. Four years later with two book fests now under our belts, we proudly mark the 24th anniversary of the Annual Casper College/ARTCORE Literary Conference by once again celebrating books, authors and the written word in Wyoming with two days of fun in Casper, September 24-25. We hope you will join us for readings, panel discussions, book signings, craft talks, a banquet and a late-night poetry slam. All events are open to the public without charge except for the banquet.

    This year we will feature around 15 authors and illustrators, including but not limited to, Jack Gantos, Larry Watson, Jaimee Wriston Colbert, Zak Pullen, Gene Gagliano, Ravi Shankar and John Vernon. Wyoming Arts Council fellowship judge, Lee Gutkind, and three fellowship winners who will be announced later this summer, will join us for readings as well. Nina McConigley, Honors Program instructor from the University of Wyoming, returns to Casper for the Fest where she will appear on a panel and read for us. And the ever-popular George Vlastos has agreed to emcee the poetry slam which is always a lot of fun!

    Visit this page regularly to learn more about the authors and events as we will update it often during the planning process. Registration links for the banquet will be made available later this summer.

    We'd like to thank the Natrona County Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) for their early, generous support, as well as UW/CC and the English department at the University of Wyoming. Funding sources we will be applying to include the Casper College Foundation, Casper Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, Natrona County School District, Wyoming Arts Council, The Wyoming Community Foundation, The Wyoming Cultural Trust, Kinder Morgan and the Rocky Mountain Power Foundation. Finally, we'd like to express our appreciation to Casper College and ARTCORE for over two decades of steady support for an annual literary conference in Casper.

    Laurie Lye and Holly Wendt, Co-directors, ESBF

    "What's It All About, Jackson Hole?"

    What’s it all about? Art Representing Local (Jackson Hole) Culture

    Application: Deadline April 30

    Ciao Gallery & Lines Mountain Sports Galleries of Jackson Hole invites local artists to showcase their choice pieces in the juried exhibition “What’s it all about”? This exhibition is dedicated to celebrating our local culture. We aspire to exhibit works that express and embrace what life is like in Jackson.

    • Open to but not limited to, any and all works created in all mediums that is inspired by Jackson Hole lifestyle and culture.
    • Applicants must be local residents of Teton County ID or WY.
    • Submitted entries must be original works produced by the applicant.
    • Work must be framed, ready to hang and under glass/Plexiglas, and clearly labeled with the artists name and contact information.
    • No substitutions of accepted work.
    • All work will remain on display during the duration of the exhibit.
    • Art work must be for sale.
    • Submissions must be received on or before April 30st, 2010. All those who have entered will receive a reply on May 3, 2010.
    • All chosen artists work must be delivered no later than May 6th 2010.
    • All chosen artists will feature their work at a special “What’s it all about?” exhibition May 7th 2010, which will continue to be displayed, front exhibition space of CIAO & Lines Gallery, until May 19, 2010. The reception will be publicized and open to the public.
    • Unsold art is to be picked up May 19, 2010.

    Jurors: Michele Walters, Director of Ciao Gallery, Tarley Smith, Director of Lines Gallery & Local artist Tom Woodhouse.


    Tonight's WAC town meeting is in Gillette

    The Wyoming Arts Council is holding a series of "Arts in Economy, Education and Everyday Life Town Meetings" around the state. Sessions have already been held in Cheyenne, Lander and Sheridan. Tonight the meeting's in Gillette. It's free and open to the public.

    Here are the details:

    Crook, Campbell & Weston Counties/Town Meeting
    Tuesday, April 20, 2010 - 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
    Cedar Room/George Amos Building
    412 South Gillette Avenue, Gillette, WY

    FMI: 307-777-7742.

    Ag Photo Contest deadline is Sept. 1


    Monday, April 19, 2010

    Horse Barn celebrates 100th anniversary with musical comedy "A Bag Full of Miracles"

    From a SCPR press release:

    In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Horse Barn, the Wyoming Territorial Prison State Historic Site will host the spring production of Tom Northam’s whirlwind musical-comedy, “A Bag Full of Miracles.”

    Produced by The Unexpected Company Senior Community Theatre, “A Bag Full of Miracles,” will run April 30 and May 1,2,7,8 and 9. Tickets are $20 each and can be purchased at the Laramie Plains Museum Carriage House, Eppson Center for Seniors and First Interstate Bank.

    The horse barn, designed in 1910 by Laramie's architectural firm Hitchcock & Hitchcock, was one of the first new major construction projects of the University of Wyoming after acquiring the grounds from the former Territorial Prison.

    UW adapted the land for use as an experimental stock farm so a majestic horse barn was built for its Percheron draft horses, as well as saddle horses. This impressive barn included a show ring, animal wash stalls, carriage house, grooms' lockers and an office. Eighty years later, in 1990, the horse barn hay loft was converted into a theater.

    “The 100-year-old horse barn provides a pleasant ambiance for a unique theatrical experience and we invite all to enjoy this opportunity.” says Deborah Amend, superintendent of the Wyoming Territorial Prison Historic Site.

    "A Bag Full of Miracles” centers on Maggie Hill, an unmarried, newly-retired school teacher with a meager pension, and Lady Anne Windesmeer, a recent widow who has been swindled by an unscrupulous lawyer.

    Brought together by their common financial straits, the two seniors convert Lady Anne's San Francisco home into a bed and breakfast, which becomes the setting for a cast of characters that bring with them hilarity, intrigue, romance, warmth, and a twisting chain of events that will shake up the audience in more ways than one.

    They're also sure to leave the theater humming the memorable songs woven throughout this funny yet sensitive look at senior life.

    This production is supported in part by a grant from the Wyoming Arts Council, through funding from Wyoming State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes a great nation deserves great art, and through the Wyoming Territorial Prison State Historic Site. For more information, contact Susan McGraw 307-745-8352.

    The Wyoming Territorial Prison and Horse Barn Theater, is located at 975 Snowy Range Road in Laramie.

    New Belgium Brewery contest seeks films about craft beers, sustainability and whimsy

    Enter your film now into the New Belgium Brewery's Clips of Faith competition.

    Amateur filmmakers, activists, aspiring actors and actresses, and accidental brilliance in video – we want it all.

    The Rules:

    ◦Submit now through May 20, 2010

    ◦Film length 10 seconds to 10 minutes.

    ◦Incorporate one or more of New Belgium’s three main follies: Craft Beer; Sustainability (think environmental statements); Whimsy (think spoofs, giddy candid moments or anything worth watching)

    ◦You need to be at least 21 years of age and reside in the United States.

    ◦Filmmakers must secure rights to all theatrical performances, music and locations for each submission.

    ◦Keep it clean. Overconsumption of beer, gratuitous violence, sex or nudity will not be eligible for screening.

    ◦By submitting your film on our group page, you are granting us permission to show it at our Clips of Faith Beer and Film Tour.

    O.K. Now for the fun part. The bestest of the best submissions will be compiled into a feature-length film that will visit 14 tremendously hip cities on our Clips of Faith Beer & Film Tour. Will one be yours?

    How about if we sweeten the brew? We’ll reward the top 3 filmmakers with a trip to New Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins, Colorado, for a private screening and beer dinner extraordinaire.

    Either way – you have a darn good chance of getting your film out there on the big screen.

    Our team of judges includes filmmakers, brewers, carnies and hopefully someone famous if we can talk them into it.

    To submit, go to

    Sculptor Kate Budd featured at WAC event

    Wax sculptor Kate Budd (an untitled sculpture is shown above) will be featured in an artists' roundtable on Saturday, April 24, 5:30-8 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn, 1150 N. Poplar St., Casper.

    This event is free and open to the public. An assortment of hors d’oeuvres will be served along with tea and coffee.

    The reception begins at 5:30 p.m., and the winners of the 2010 WAC visual arts fellowships will be announced at 6 p.m. That will be followed by a roundtable featuring presentations by this year’s fellowship judges – sculptor Kate Budd from Akron, Ohio; mixed-media artist Susan Johnson from St. Mary’s City, Md.; and photographer Mark Klett from Tempe, Ariz.

    For more information, contact Michael Shay at the Wyoming Arts Council, 307-777-5234 or

    Some background info on Kate:

    Kate Budd received her B.A. degree from Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen, Scotland (1990) and her MFA in Sculpture from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (1995). Kate has received two Individual Excellence Awards from the Ohio Arts Council and her work has been exhibited in numerous group exhibits in the United Kingdom, the Mid-west and Texas. Solo exhibits include “Thorny” at Rudolph Poissant Gallery, Houston, Texas, “Waxworks” at the Sculpture Center in Cleveland, Ohio, “Kate Budd: On Site Ohio” at the Akron Art Museum and “Honey” at The College of Wooster. Her work has been reviewed in Art in America, New Art Examiner and Sculpture magazines.

    Before coming to the University of Akron, Kate taught in the sculpture department at the University of Texas in Austin for three years. She is now an Associate Professor of Art at the Myers School of Art where she has taught 3-D Design and Sculpture since 1998.

    Smile when you recite that, pardner


    Teton County Library's "Geologists of Jackson Hole" series explores Iceland

    Geologists of Jackson Hole: “How The Earth Was Made: Iceland.” On Tuesday, May 4, 6 p.m. Presented with the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival, this film hunts for clues to the mystery of what powerful forces are ripping Iceland apart and lighting its fiery volcanoes. Here lava rips huge tears in the ground and new islands are born from the waves. Yet Iceland has a history of being covered in, and carved by ice. Locked in a titanic battle, fire and ice collide as glaciers explode and cataclysmic floods decimate the landscape. Iceland's volcanoes have had ramifications far beyond the shores of Iceland, causing climatic chaos and devastation across the planet; a fate which may one day happen again. Cost: Free. Location: Teton County Library's Ordway Auditorium. Contact: Adult Humanities Coordinator, Oona Doherty, 733-2164 ext. 135 or

    Another Wyoming Spur nominee: Robert Greer

    In my earlier listing of writers in Wyoming nominated for 2010 Western Writers of America Spur Awards, I left someone out.

    Robert Greer's "Spoon" was nominated in the Best Western Short Novel category. See full list of winners and finalists at

    Robert, a writer, editor and physician, spends most of each year at his ranch near Wheatland. He's the author of a number of novels set throughout the West, but mainly in Wyoming and Colorado.

    Here's some info about "Spoon:"

    SPOON: A NOVEL, Fulcrum Publishing, Hardcover: October 2009, ISBN 978-1-55591-689-3

    A novel of the contemporary American West, Spoon tells the story of Arcus Witherspoon, a mysterious half-black, half-Indian, oddly clairvoyant man searching the West for his roots. Hitchhiking near Hardin, Montana, Spoon falls in with a ranching family struggling to keep their ranch afl oat amidst the pressures of hard economic times and an encroaching coal company. Proving himself a gifted ranch hand and mentor, Spoon charges himself with rescuing the Darleys and guiding the family's teenage son TJ on his path to manhood. While Spoon's checkered past includes a prison stint and a navy tour of Vietnam, it is his tenacity, wisdom, and charm that end up defining this quintessential Western man.

    Projected images become moving sculptures in Sarkisian exhibit at the UW Art Museum

    Peter Sarkisian (American, b. 1965), Extruded Video Engine, Large Shape 1, Version 3, 2007, vacuum formed thermal plastic, video projection, 39 x 40 x 8 inches, photo courtesy of the artist. Click to View Flash Video Pop-up.

    Wyomingarts visited the UW Art Museum's exhibits last Friday during a break in the Works of Wyoming "Starving Artists" seminars in Laramie.

    "Peter Sarkisian: Video Works, 1996-2008" knocked the socks off Wyomingarts. We heard it before we saw it -- the plink-plink-plink of water, the pounding of what seemed like a giant hammer, the whirring of an engine.

    The sound effects were only a small part of the exhibition. The pounding comes from a projected wall where -every minute or so -- an object hits it from the opposite side. There is no opposite side, but it sure seemed as if some very large person or machine lives behind the wall and is denting it with metal objects.

    "Extruded Video Engine, Large Shape 1, Version 3" is a colorful machine projected upon a sculpture that makes it 3-D. The engine has many moving parts and emits various mechanical noises. Printed messages travel along a fan belt-like apparatus and disappear into the soul of the machine.

    Words are inadequate to describe Sarkisian's work. You have to see it for yourself. You have until May 8 to do so.


    Friday, April 16, 2010

    "Paredes Hablando" mural unveiling May 1 in Laramie

    On Saturday, May 1, La Radio Montenesa Voz de la Gente (KOCA) in Laramie unveils its mural commemorating Latinas and Latinos in Wyoming. The mural is "Laramie: Paredes Hablando -- Walls That Speak."

    The day will begin with an 11 a.m. luncheon, followed at 1:30 p.m. by the mural unveiling. At 5 p.m., there will be a screening of the film "2501 Migrantes," a 2009 film that documents the population of a town that has been forced to leave to find work. This is at the Alice Hardy Stevens Center, 603 E. Ivinson Ave.

    Info: Connie, 307-742-2842;

    Thursday, April 15, 2010

    REMINDER: Wyoming Arts Council holds town meetings in Sheridan and Gillette

    The Wyoming Arts Council is holding a series of "Arts in Economy, Education and Everyday Life Town Meetings" around the state. Sessions have already been held in Cheyenne and Lander. Next week's sessions are in Sheridan and Gillette.

    The meetings are free and open to the public.

    Here are the details:

    Johnson & Sheridan Counties/Town Meeting
    Monday, April 19, 2010 - 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
    Inner Circle Room - Sheridan County Fulmer Public
    Library, 335 W. Alger Street, Sheridan, WY

    Crook, Campbell & Weston Counties/Town Meeting
    Tuesday, April 20, 2010 - 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
    Cedar Room/George Amos Building
    412 South Gillette Avenue, Gillette, WY

    UW Wind Symphony performs April 18

    From a UW press release:

    Proclaimed as the top band at the University of Wyoming, the Wind Symphony will perform a free concert Sunday, April 18, at 3 p.m. in the Fine Arts Center concert hall in Laramie. Michael Griffith and Brad Williamson are the guest conductors.

    The concert will open with a classic American march, "The Southerner," by Russell Alexander followed by "Invocation of Alberich," a tone poem based on themes from Richard Wagner's "Ring of the Nibelung" saga. Next is William Schuman's "New England Triptych," taken from the first collection of music composed entirely by an American, William Billings.

    Movements based on three Billings' hymns of the American Revolution including "Be Glad Then America, When Jesus Wept" and the unofficial national hymn of the American Revolution, "Chester," will conclude the first half.

    Three short Shostakovich works taken from his piano and theatrical writing, the "Prelude," "Polka" and "Galop," will begin the second half.

    "One of the major works in the band repertoire, ‘Fiesta del Pacifico' will make an exciting finale to the concert," Griffith says.

    For more information, contact Griffith at (307) 766-3069 or

    Wednesday, April 14, 2010

    Travel & Tourism schedules comment sessions for new I-25 welcome center

    Wyoming Travel & Tourism is working with Toxey McMillan of San Antonio, Texas, to develop an interpretive plan for the new Southeast Wyoming Welcome Center. The interpretive plan will guide the development of the exterior and interior exhibit spaces of the new center. The center will be located on the northbound lane of the new High Plains interchange on Interstate-25 near the Wyoming-Colorado state line. Construction of the center is underway. As such, we are inviting the public to provide their input of on what they would like visitors to learn, see and do in the Cowboy State. We will be hosting public input meetings on April 27 in Cheyenne, April 28 in Torrington, and April 29 in Laramie. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at the numbers below.

    Leslie Kedelty, Industry Services Manager, Wyoming Travel & Tourism, or 307.777.2839

    Get to know Mark Klett at WAC's April 24 awards reception and roundtable

    "Byron checking the position of the moon with his laptop, Flaming Gorge, Wyoming 8/8/97," by Mark Klett, Gelatin silver print, Paper 11 in. x 14 in. From the collection of the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Columbia College --Chicago.

    On Saturday, April 24, 5:30-8 p.m., the Wyoming Arts Council will hold its visual arts fellowship awards reception followed by an artists’ roundtable at Hilton Garden Inn, 1150 N. Poplar St., Casper.

    This event is free and open to the public. An assortment of hors d’oeuvres will be served along with tea and coffee.

    The reception begins at 5:30 p.m., and the winners of the 2010 WAC visual arts fellowships will be announced at 6 p.m. That will be followed by a roundtable featuring presentations by this year’s fellowship judges – sculptor Kate Budd from Akron Ohio; mixed-media artist Susan Johnson from St. Mary’s City, Md.; and photographer Mark Klett from Tempe, Ariz.

    For more information, contact Michael Shay at the Wyoming Arts Council, 307-777-5234 or

    Arts education in Mountain West one of hot topics at May 13 conference in Salt Lake City

    One of the intriguing sessions at the "Mountain West Arts Conference: Risk and Reward" on May 13 in Salt Lake City is one on arts education:

    The Status of Arts Education in Utah and the Mountain West, with Tim Bothel, Ph.D. of Bothell Assessment and Research

    The Utah Arts Council, in partnership with the Utah State Office of Education, Montana Arts Council, Idaho Commission on the Arts and the Wyoming Arts Council with their sister education agencies conducted a survey about the status of arts education, K-12 in all four states. Tim Bothell will share with the audience the key findings of that survey, where Utah stands, how we compare to the other states, what educators want and how they perceive the role and importance of arts education. We all acknowledge the future of arts organizations and how we prepare kids to navigate a complex and global society is highly impacted by the quality of arts education children and youth receive. Join us as we explore where we are and where we want to go.

    To register for the conference, go to

    Federal Junior Duck Stamp winners on display at National Museum of Wildlife Art

    Best of Show, Grades 10-12: Flight of the Blue Moon, 2010, Lisanne, Pinedale, Oil

    From a press release:

    The National Museum of Wildlife Art is pleased to announce the winners of the 2010 Wyoming
    Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest. An exhibition of the State's winning entries will be hanging in the Museum's King Gallery May 1-August 8.

    A virtual exhibition of the 1st-3rd place Wyoming winners is currently available online at

    Tuesday, April 13, 2010

    R.K. Hansen's photos at 8th Street Gallery

    An exhibit, "Wyoming Images, Photography of R.K. Hansen," will be shown on Friday, April 30, 5-7 p.m. and Saturday, May 1, 1-3 p.m., at Ed & Sandy Clark's 8th Street Gallery, at 465 N. 8th St., Laramie. FMI: 307-721-5893.

    Gillette's AVA Center celebrates Earth Week

    Screening for "The Exiles" in Riverton

    Riverton Branch Library and Central Wyoming College Library present a public screening of the groundbreaking Native American Film, “The Exiles.”

    Original cinematographer and Oscar winner, Erik Daarstad, will be the guest speaker. Erik will talk about the historical significance and the making of this film. He will also visit about these real life characters and answer any questions the audience may have.

    “The Exiles” chronicles one night in the lives of young Native Americans living in the Bunker Hill district of Los Angeles in 1958. It is the story of three young American Indians who have left their reservations to live in downtown L.A. and who will once again be displaced. This documentary is reflective and entertaining with an awesome soundtrack that includes Southwestern Native American music and popular rock-n-roll songs from 1958.

    Discover what happens to these young Indians on Tuesday, May 4 at 7:00 pm in the Riverton Branch Library Community Room.

    For more information, please call the library at 307-856-3556.

    This program is supported in part by a grant from the Wyoming Arts Council, through funding from the Wyoming State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

    Monday, April 12, 2010

    Putting the "art" in children's mental health

    Sound Check 3 June 26 in Pinedale

    From the Pinedale Fine Arts Council:


    Saturday, June 26, 5 p.m. Free. At American Legion Park in Pinedale

    It's that time of the year again. The Pinedale Fine Arts Council will be presenting the third annual Sound Check outdoor music fest on June 26 in the American Legion Park (5 p.m., free) in Pinedale. Sound Check was first conceived three years ago following PFAC's purchase of a new sound system via grant monies from the Wyoming Cultural Trust. The inagural event was a hit as Jackson's Aaron Davis headlined a great show with great weather. Last year's event was headlined by the Jalan Crossland Band.

    This year, PFAC has booked Austin's The Lonesome Heroes as our headliners, Austin's Leo Rondeau playing middle and local alt-country rockers The Science Rockets will open things up. This is sure to be the music event of the summer so mark the date on the calendar, dust off your cooler and camp chairs and come listen to some great music!

    Watch latest vid from Lonesome Heroes at

    Pulitzer Prize winners announced

    Pulitzer Prizes announced in Letters, Drama and Music categories:

    Fiction - Tinkers by Paul Harding (Bellevue Literary Press)
    Drama - Next to Normal, music by Tom Kitt, book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey
    History - Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World by Liaquat Ahamed (The Penguin Press)
    Biography - The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt by T.J. Stiles (Alfred A. Knopf)
    Poetry - Versed by Rae Armantrout (Wesleyan University Press)
    General Nonfiction - The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy by David E. Hoffman (Doubleday)
    Music - Violin Concerto by Jennifer Higdon (Lawdon Press)

    Support Wyoming's libraries (and librarians)

    For links to Wyoming's libraries, go to

    Stubson & Viscardi in concert April 25

    From an ARTCORE press release:

    Susan Stubson & Catherine Viscardi will perform in concert on Sunday, April 25, 4 p.m., at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in Casper.

    Susan Stubson is a sixth generation Wyomingite who began her piano studies at age eight and gave her first recital at age eleven. She received a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance from the University of Colorado, Boulder, during which time she won the hallowed Fiske Competition an unprecedented four consecutive years. She was a regional finalist for Music Teachers National Association and has traveled with the Dallas Brass, performing Gershwin's Rhapsody In Blue.

    Susan received a Masters of Music Degree in Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. Moving to New York City, she freelanced as pianist for the Orchestra of Saint Lukes and as an audition pianist for classical music organizations. She worked extensively as a vocal coach and rehearsal pianist for the Juilliard School, then served as an assistant to tenor Nico Castel at the Metropolitan Opera.

    Susan yearned to return to the West where she earned a degree in law at the University of Wyoming. She practiced law in Casper for several years before "retiring" from the law practice to practice child rearing and piano…in that order. Recognizing the importance and relevance of art and music in our everyday lives, Susan is committed to arts advocacy and is a Board Member on the Wyoming Arts Council.

    Hailed by the Connecticut Post as “an absolutely sparkling soprano,” Catherine Viscardi was most recently seen as Adele in the Intermountain Opera production of Die Fledermaus.

    Other roles include Oscar (Un Ballo in Maschera), Sophie (Werther), Tytania (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Mabel (Pirates of Penzance), Olympia (Les Contes d'Hoffmann), Norina (Don Pasquale), Josephine (HMS Pinafore), and Madame Herz (The Impresario).

    On the concert stage, Ms. Viscardi has been featured as soloist in the Mozart Requiem with the Greater Bridgeport Symphony in Connecticut, conducted by Gustav Meier, the Bach Magnificat with the Bozeman Symphony in Montana and the Mozart Exultate Jubilate with the Wyoming Symphony, both under the baton of Matthew Savery, as well as the Handel Messiah with both the Norwalk and Allentown Symphonies with Diane Wittry conducting.

    An advocate of the song recital, Ms. Viscardi has performed concerts in Merkin Hall and Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall in New York City, as well as the Center for Contemporary Arts in Virginia Beach and the St. James Chamber Music Series and Cultural Corner Concert Series in Bozeman, Montana.

    Previous engagements include Young Artist residencies with Ash Lawn Opera (VA) covering Rosina in The Barber of Seville, and Portland Opera (OR) covering Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann for the mainstage and singing Queen of the Night in outreach productions.

    Ms. Viscardi holds music degrees from Vassar College (NY) and Mannes College of Music (NY).