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Life-sized puppets will mingle with Art Fest crowds downtown

The Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater, a professional troupe based in Minneapolis, will be part of the Grand Cities Art Fest on Saturday and Sunday in downtown Grand Forks and East Grand Forks.

The Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater, a professional troupe based in Minneapolis, will be part of the Grand Cities Art Fest on Saturday and Sunday in downtown Grand Forks and East Grand Forks.

New this year to the annual festival, the Heart of the Beast troupe's life-sized puppets will wander throughout the venue, including "fool" puppets, harlequin-themed puppets and Tarantella, which are exaggerated masks, a news release said.

The Grand Cities Art Fest will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, featuring 140 artists showing and selling their work, plus food vendors, art demonstrations and entertainment stages on both sides of the Red River.

For children, there will be the Kids Corner with masking and puppet-making activities for children, including the chance for children to perform with their puppets on a small stage next to the craft area.

Children can make puppets from socks, envelopes, paper bags and more. Masks can be made from paper plates and sunglasses. Musical activities for children will also be available. All Kids Corner activities take place on the Greenway and are free and open to the public.

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Arts in Action

The festival will feature demonstrations by Arts in Action artists throughout the event. They'll include jewelry artist Genevieve Echols; Heather Anderson of Hot House Creations; Susan Rowe, drawing; Amy Uthus, ceramics; Jenn Steinbrink, ceramics; Janet Olney, textiles and fibers; and Elliot Silberman, portraits.

The Arts in Action artists, selected from more than 200 artist applications, will be located either under the red or yellow canopied booths in Town Square, or on the path between Town Square and the Greenway.

Emerging artists

The Downtown Leadership Group has announced that Jessica Mongeon and Tessa Hiney were selected to participate in the Grand Cities Art Fest Emerging Artist Program. These artists will learn how to market their work at art fairs by exhibiting free of charge at the festival Saturday and Sunday.

Emerging Artists from Minnesota or North Dakota were selected from more than 200 artist applications.

Nicole Derenne, executive director of North Valley Arts Council, said in a news release that festival organizers were pleased to help the young artists learn about display, pricing, salesmanship and more.

"We believe there's often a disconnect between the education young artists receive for their craft and their knowledge of arts marketing and sales," Derenne said.

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Mongeon grew up in Rolette, N.D., and earned a bachelor's degree in fine arts from UND. She often features horses in her work, depicted in simplified lines and broad brushstrokes. Her large-scale works are largely influenced by abstract expressionist works of the mid-20th century.

Hiney designs jewelry and had worked at a bead store in Grand Forks for three years, where she honed her design skills and jewelry-making techniques. Two years ago, she began her own business, Tessori Jewelry. Her latest works include inspirational jewelry.

Artist awards

The Best in Category artists from the art fest will be recognized at an awards ceremony at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Xcel Energy Main Stage in Town Square. During the ceremony, the Best in Show and runners up also will be announced.

The Grand Cities Art Fest is sponsored in part by the Grand Forks Herald, North Valley Arts Council, Xcel Energy Foundation, John S. & James L. Knight Foundation , KVLY TV-11, Leighton Broadcasting, Clear Channel Radio, City of Grand Forks, City of East Grand Forks, HB Sound & Light, Greater Grand Forks Convention & Visitors Bureau, Cabela's, Fine Print, Vaaler Insurance, Alerus Financial, the Myra Foundation, Coca-Cola, Hugo's and Community Foundation of Grand Forks, East Grand Forks and Region.

Xcel Energy Main Stage, Grand Forks Town Square:

Saturday

-- 11 a.m., Polish National Alliance Dancers

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-- Noon, North River Ramblers

-- 1 p.m., Crimson Creek Players

-- 2 p.m., Downtown Horns

-- 3 p.m., Castleisland

-- 4 p.m., North River Ramblers

Sunday

-- 11 a.m., Blake/Popejoy Jazz Duo

-- Noon, Oasis Dancers

-- 1 p.m., Awards, then North River Ramblers

-- 2 p.m., Ecuador Manta

-- 3 p.m., Oasis Dancers

-- 4 p.m., Blake/Popejoy Jazz Duo

HB Sound & Light Stage, East Grand Forks

Saturday

-- 11 a.m., Downtown Horns

-- Noon, Castleisland

-- 1 p.m., Blake/Popejoy Jazz Duo

-- 2 p.m., Ecuador Manta

-- 3 p.m., Ron Franz

- 4 p.m., Blake/Popejoy Jazz Duo

Sunday

-- 11 a.m., Ron Franz

-- Noon, Downtown Horns

-- 1 p.m., Castleisland

-- 2 p.m., Ron Franz

-- 3 p.m., North River Ramblers

-- 4 p.m., Castleisland.

Related Topics: EAST GRAND FORKS
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