Miss North Dakota pageant set for this weekend at Empire Arts Center

Miss North Dakota USA and Miss North Dakota Teen USA will be crowned in the state competition, a prelude to the nationally televised Miss USA pageant.

image (3).jpg
Aspen Hennessy, of Des Lacs, N.D. (left), and Caitlyn Vogel, of Minot, were crowned Miss North Dakota Teen USA and Miss North Dakota USA, respectively, last year at a pageant held in Watertown, S.D. Vogel went on to become first runner-up in the Miss USA pageant last year; a few years earlier she was named first runner-up in the Miss Teen USA pageant.
Photo credit: Future Productions
We are part of The Trust Project.

GRAND FORKS — The 2022 Miss North Dakota USA and Miss North Dakota Teen USA pageant takes place Saturday and Sunday, April 30 and May 1, at the Empire Arts Center in Grand Forks.

The Pageant Preliminary Competition show begins at 8 p.m. Saturday. The Miss North Dakota USA and Miss North Dakota Teen USA Pageant Finals competition will begin at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

About 26 young women are expected to participate in the annual event, which is a preliminary competition to the nationally televised Miss USA pageant. The winner of Miss USA will advance to the international broadcast of Miss Universe 2022.

The state event is open to the public and everyone is invited to attend these fast-paced, fashion-forward productions, organizers say.

The contestants, who come from across the state, will compete in three, equally-scored categories: Interview, Evening Gown and Swimwear for the Miss North Dakota competition or Active Wear for the Miss North Dakota Teen competition.


For tickets, ranging from $29 to $49, visit . A live pay-per-view webcast will also be available at this website listed above. Tickets also may be purchased at the door.

LISTEN Center to present ‘Notes of Gold’ performance

The LISTEN Center will present “Notes of Gold,” a performance described as “a blast to the past,” at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, April 28 and 29 at the Empire Arts Center, said Christy Potts, executive director.

LISTEN stands for Love Is Sharing The Exceptional Needs.

In the “Notes of Gold” show, the Performing for Change Cast “will take you on a journey starting in the 1970s to now,” Potts said in a news release. “Along the way and through the decades, they will take note, through ‘Notes of Gold,” of what is truly important on this journey going back in time and on to the future.

“We have a huge cast of people who happen to have disabilities and people who do not; each performer will bring their story, their talent and their passion for social change and the arts,” she said.

The production will be dedicated to the late Helen Bechold, a pioneer in the Self-Advocacy Movement and an activist in the area of civil and human rights for people with disabilities, and to “others we have lost in the past two years, through this pandemic,” Potts said.

Tickets are available by calling (701) 746-7840 and will be sold at the door. Tickets are $25 for families, $10 for adults, and $5 for seniors and people with disabilities.

The Empire Arts Center is located at 415 DeMers Ave.


Musical groups to perform Pops Concert at UND Memorial Union

The UND University Band and the Grand Cities Children’s Choir will present “Disney Spectacular: A Pops Concert” at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 28 in the UND Memorial Union Ballroom.

The event is free and open to the public. It will also be livestreamed on the UND Music Department website, .

Members of the Grand Cities Children's Choir will perform in the Disney Spectacular: A Pops Concert" at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 28 at the UND Memorial Union.
Monica Danielson

A celebration of the 50th Anniversary Season of Disney World, the performance will feature 39 tunes in various settings associated with the wonderful world of Disney, said James Popejoy, UND director of bands. The audience will hear songs from “Mary Poppins,” “Tangled,” “Mulan,” “High School Musical,” “Pocahontas,” “Star Wars” and “The Lion King,” among others.

The University Band will also pay tribute to the Disney classic, “Fantasia.” Brooklyn Evans will be the featured vocal soloist with the University Band in the performance of “Let It Go,” from “Frozen”.

Celebrating the 50th Anniversary Season of Disney World, the UND University Band will perform popular songs from a host of Disney movies in a pops concert set for 8 p.m. Thursday, April 28 at the UND Memorial Union.

Two ensembles will join in a closing piece, “Disney Spectacular,” featuring music from three of the most popular Disney shows: “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Aladdin”.

Conductors include James and Melanie Popejoy, Amy DeWitt, Jack Boyer and Juanita Caballero Casas.

For more information on this concert, contact the UND bands office at (701) 777-2815.

Dakota Science Center to celebrate ‘National Wildflower Week’

In recognition of National Wildflower Week, May 1-7, the Dakota Science Center plans to provide the Grand Forks Public Library with a wildflower and pollinator display and Pollinator Initiative seed packets for patrons, while supplies last.


The Dakota Science Center will offer a listing of plants that attract native butterflies in the Red River Valley, where the planting season usually begins at the end of May, according to Laura Munski, DSC executive director.

The DSC will provide the library with a display of native grasses, the World Wildlife Fund Grasslands and Pollinators activity book, and University of Minnesota Extension’s Bee Lawn information. The display features the public pollinator gardens in the Greater Grand Forks area.

Members of the public will make a pollinator garden as wall art in the library’s Children’s Department, Munski said.

A film, “My Garden of a Thousand Bees,” follows acclaimed filmmaker Martin Dohrn, who, while locked down during the pandemic, turned his lenses on the surprising and spectacular bees living in his own urban garden in Bristol, England. Watch it online at .

For more information, visit or check the Dakota Science Center’s Facebook page for weekly posts.

Applications due for Arts Legacy Grants

Applications for Arts Legacy Grants, to be awarded by the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council, are due Sunday, May 1.

Grants up to $10,000 will be awarded to nonprofit arts organizations, communities, schools, individuals and other nonprofit organizations. Applications will be accepted from the council’s service area: Kittson, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake and Roseau counties.

The Arts Legacy Grants support artistic activities in the council’s service area, said Mara Hanel, executive director. Funding can be used for arts projects and equipment, general support, public art projects, and art events.

Applications funded through this grant program enliven communities with festivals, theater projects, folk music entertainment, visual demonstrations, creative-writing workshops and many other activities that improve the quality of life for people in this area.

Schools in the council’s service region can also apply for an Artist Residency grant of $2,600, plus $400 if the residency needs supplies. The council provides a teaching artist registry on its website, .

Grant application-writing assistance is available from the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council’s office.

Quick Turn Around Grants, at $500 each, are available on a first-come-first-served basis. These grants may be used to support artists who have missed gigs and lost income due to the pandemic.

For more information, visit the council’s website, send an email to or call (218) 745-8886.


Pamela Knudson is a features and arts/entertainment writer for the Grand Forks Herald.

She has worked for the Herald since 2011 and has covered a wide variety of topics, including the latest performances in the region and health topics.

Pamela can be reached at or (701) 780-1107.
What to read next
Members Only
Curt Eriksmoen's "Did You Know That" column shares the story of Gene Holter, who grew up in Jamestown and went on to train animals that frequently appeared in TV shows and movies.
Sertoma once again is taking the lead, with games, a kiddie parade, a magic show, live entertainment (starting with the City Band at noon), food trucks, baseball, 5K or 10K walk/run and more – all leading up to fireworks display to celebrate nation's independence
Presented by Spirit Lake Casino and Resort
Presented by Spirit Lake Casino and Resort