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Historic homes and cemeteries, music and theater under the stars, and so much more can be found in our area this weekend. Get out and enjoy.

The weekend starts tonight with Thursdays on Main in Clear Lake

"Thursdays on Main" continues tonight, July 13, in downtown Clear Lake.

The fun begins at 6 p.m. with bounce houses, kids' activities, laser tag, hand-powered kiddie train rids, crafts, vendor market and food. Stores are also open late.

There will be special entertainment by Denny's School of Dance at 6:30 p.m., with The Mockingbirds playing from 7 to 9 p.m.

Thursdays on Main activities end at 9, when the fun moves to City Park for the showing of Finding Dory (PG).

The Summer Showcase Series continues at the Surf Ballroom, with music from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Brian Naughton will be joined by opener Mississippi Jake.

Theater Under the Stars is at Clear Lake's Central Gardens

Central Gardens of North Iowa and the Clear Lake Arts Center are partnering again to present ‘Summer Theater Under-the-Stars’ July 14-16. Curtain time is 7:30 p.m.

Craig Rule will director this outdoor performance of Thornton Wilder’s Pulitzer prize play, “Our Town,” which portrays a small New England town over a span of 10-12 years.

The cast is Makenna Crabb, Gabreyl Gaubatz, Jacob Gray, John Henry, Dean Hess, Matt Holub, Matt Kono, Diana Meyers, Sam Robbins, Eley Schmidt, Jadan Smith, Marsha Thayer, and Mary Woerner.

Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the gate with children 14 and under free when accompanied by an adult. Tickets can be purchased online at, at the Clear Lake Arts Center, 17 S. Fourth St., or the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, 205 Main Ave.

Central Gardens of North Iowa is situated on 2.75 acres at 800 Second Ave. N., and the ceremonial garden provides the setting for this performance. Picnicking before the show is encouraged, and people are encouraged to bring blankets or lawn chairs. Some seating will be provided.

"Smoke On the Mountain" comes to Mason City Community Theatre

Be sure to catch a performance of "Smoke on the Mountain" at Mason City Community Theatre.

The production, by Stebens Children’s Theatre, will be at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 15. Tickets can be purchased by calling the MCCT box office at 641-424-6424 (leave a message), or by emailing

The comical, musical revue takes place in 1938. It’s Saturday night in Mount Pleasant, NC and the Rev. Mervin Oglethorpe has invited the Sanders Family to provide an "upliftin’ evenin’ of singin’ and witnessin’."

More than two dozen vintage pop hymns from the more or less devout Sanders provide an entertaining evening that will have the audience singing and clapping.

The cast, in order of appearance, features Tom Ballmer as Rev. Oglethorpe, Sophia Ciavarelli as June, Ben Siglin as Burl, Lydia Ouverson as Vera, Amelia Ouverson as Denise, Marcus Buttweiler as Dennis, and Henry Klatt as Stanley.

"Smoke on the Mountain" is still available for tour through Aug. 11. Potential sponsors, including libraries, churches and community celebrations, are encouraged to contact Tom Ballmer at Stebens Children’s Theatre, 641-424-9802.

'Story Behind Stones' celebrates 150 years of Mason City cemetery

Mason City’s Elmwood St. Joseph Municipal Cemetery will celebrate its 150th Anniversary on Saturday, July 15, with a family friendly event, “Story Behind the Stones.”

The event, from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., offers all ages the chance to experience a day in the past.

There will be a program at 11 a.m., which will include a Wreaths Across America and Honor Guard tribute to veterans.

An Old Fashioned Picnic, reminiscent of the era when families would spend time at their family lot, will be from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sack lunches, lemonade, and ice cream will be available for a nominal charge.

From 12:30 to 3 p.m., join in a horse drawn carriage ride through the historic part of the cemetery or a horse drawn wagon ride highlighting the history of the grounds. Search for graves through a headstone hunt, or take a walking tour to observe the art and learn the meaning of symbols on headstones.

There will also be displays on cemetery history and old-fashioned family games. 

Antique and Classic Boats get their day in Clear Lake

Stop by the seawall at Clear Lake for the annual Clear Lake Antique and Classic Boat Show. The show runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 15, by City Park.

Vintage and classic watercraft of all types will be on display.

Clear Lake's Municipal Band closes its season Saturday, Sunday

Clear Lake Municipal Band closes out its 87th season this weekend with concerts Saturday and Sunday in the Ludwig Wangberg Band Shell in City Park.

Brandon Borseth is the director and Chuck Cooper, the announcer.

The concerts will feature vocal soloist Emily Phalen on “Over The Rainbow,” along with Nate Benzing and Chris Ward on “Dazzling Drums.” Benzing and Ward will be joined by Jeff Griffin on Sunday.

The concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 15, will also include “The Silver Gazebo,” “Gershwin,” “Charter Oak March,” “Aria (When Thou Art Near),” “Black Horse Troop,” and “Saint Louis Blues March.”

Sunday's concert is earlier than usual, at 1:30 p.m. The program includes “Radeztky March,” “The Thunderer,” “Amazing Grace,” “The Music Man,” “John Williams, The Symphonic Marches,” and "Star Spangled Banner," arranged by Lud Wangberg.

Forest City offers a stroll down memory lane

Six turn-of-the-century homes, along with the 1874 Trinity Church, will be open for tours from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 15, during Puckerbrush festivities in Forest City.

The tour includes the Mansion Museum, Victorian homes of Rebecca Clark and Robert Plummer, Dr. Potter's home which was also a hospital, the Thompson Home south of Immanuel Church, and the Valley-Kuns home on North Clark. There will be music by “Calling Home,” a women's trio, and “Higher Call," a men’s quartet from Minneapolis, in Trinity Church. The church, which has been on the same property for 143 years, is the oldest building in Winnebago County. The 1900 Mansion Museum, with three floors of exhibits, will be open for tours.

Tour wristbands are $10, and can be purchased on the lawn of the Mansion Museum starting at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. Youth under 12 are free

There will be horse and carriages rides, a pre-World War II Show and Shine Car and truck display, music by Sig's Band and refreshments for sale.

The Iowa History Traveling Museum, a 38-foot converted Winnebago filled with artifacts from the Iowa Historical Association in Des Moines, will be open; admission is free.

This 1900 Memory Lane event is the major fund raiser of the Winnebago Historical Society which includes Heritage Park, the Mansion Museum, the 1874 Trinity Church and the Leibrand/Whiteis Research Library.

Dennis DeYoung performs Saturday at the Surf

Dennis DeYoung, a legendary singer, songwriter, keyboardist, composer and record producer with a career spanning more than 40 years, is best known for being a founding member of the rock band Styx. DeYoung was lead vocalist and keyboardist for the band during a tenure that lasted from 1970 until June 1999.

DeYoung has been credited as the writer of more Styx songs than any other band member. He was also the band's most successful writer, penning seven of the band's eight Billboard Top 10 singles.

His concert showcases all the Styx greatest hits spanning the 1970s, '80s, and '90s, including the top Top 10 hits "Lady," "Babe," "Come Sail Away," "Too Much Time on My Hands," "Best of Times," "Mr. Roboto."

Dennis DeYoung and The Music of Styx will be Saturday, July 15, at the Surf Ballroom. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $28 in advance and $33 at the door.

Art-inspired floral arrangements wanted for Lake exhibit

Floral designers are being sought to submit fresh floral arrangements for Bloomin’ Art 2017, an exhibition of fresh flower creations inspired by works of art.

The exhibit, presented by Central Gardens of North Iowa in cooperation with the Clear Lake Arts Center, will run from July 21-23 in the Hanson Gallery at the arts center, 17 S. Fourth St., Clear Lake.

Exhibit hours will be noon to 5 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, with a Meet the Designer Reception from 1-3 p.m.

Designers must submit their fresh floral creation along with the work of art they used for inspiration, which may come from works currently on display at the arts center or the designer may use other artworks. There is a $5 entry fee, with one arrangement per designer.

Deliver the fresh floral arrangements along with the work of art to the Clear Lake Arts Center between 8 a.m. and noon on Friday, July 21. Display space and easels are limited and will be assigned on a first come, first serve basis. Works must be retrieved at 4 p.m. on Sunday or from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, July 24.


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