April 26, 2006 

Deadlines, people!

Last Chance to Register for MERGE

Arts advocates around the state, take note: MERGE, the final one of the state's annual conferences on the arts sponsored by the Idaho Commission on the Arts, is almost here. These day-long conferences for artists and arts organizations have been held at successive locations statewide, and the final conference will be in Boise on May 5.

The Boise workshops, hosted by the Boise City Arts Commission at Boise City Hall, begin at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 5 p.m. Expect a continental breakfast, a Creative Community Development Series luncheon and workshops on topics like marketing, working with children, and successful touring. Arts organizations can learn about understanding their location, presentation of the arts, creating a place-based economy, and discovering local culture. The luncheon keynote address at the Grove Hotel will be delivered by Rebecca Anderson, the founder and executive director of HandMade in America, a craft-based rural development organization in North Carolina, with a speech entitled "The Place-Based Economy." The accompanying workshop will address the "how-to" of Anderson's strategies.

The full-day workshop is $25 per person, and the luncheon, keynote address and Anderson's workshop is $15 per person. Register (required) no later than April 28. For more information or to register: (1) contact the Idaho Commission on the Arts at 2410 N. Old Penitentiary Rd.; (2) visit the ICA Web site at www.arts.idaho.gov.; (3) call the ICA at 334-2119; or (4) send an e-mail to djames@arts.idaho.gov.

BCT Fundraiser Raffle

Community theater, though a vital cultural element, is not one typically thought of as rolling in dough. Boise Contemporary Theater is dedicated to staging high-quality and often challenging plays for local audiences, but they need money to do it. Instead of jacking their ticket prices or making the rounds with hats in hands, BCT is appealing to local theater buffs to put their money up for a sporting chance at a cool prize.

BCT is raffling off a cute little blue-and-tan Scooter. For $20, you can enter to win this brand-new ride. And if $20 seems steep, the odds aren't: they're only selling 500 tickets. Even if you don't win, that $20 will go a long way toward helping BCT keep up the good work.

To buy a ticket, contact the BCT office at 331-9224--they'll take your credit card information right over the phone. If you'd rather get your ticket in person, you can stop by the BCT office at 854 Fulton St.

The winner will be drawn on the final night of BCT's current production, A Number, on May 6.

Early Bird Registration for Murder in the Grove

Murder In The Grove is Boise's annual conference for mystery fans and writers. Presented by the Popular Fiction Association of Idaho and Partners in Crime Boise, this year's MITG will feature writing workshops, author panels, forensic experts and agent and editor appointments with some 30 writers, agents and editors on hand to help nurture the budding crime writers in attendance. The conference's special guests include Sara Paretsky (author of the V.I. Warshawski mysteries) and Anne Perry, a widely-published author of historical mysteries. The conference isn't until the weekend of June 2, but if you register by April 30, the cost is $95. After April 30, it's $105.

Find out more about MITG on the Web at www.partnersincrimeboise.com/murder.htm.

Hark, Young Playwrights

Hailey-based theater group Company of Fools is looking for kids in grades 7 to 12 to participate in their New Voices for the Theatre program, a three-week intensive play-writing workshop, scheduled for June 12 to June 30. Students who are interested are invited to fill out an application (available by calling 788-6520), submit a two-page scene and another piece of creative writing. Contact Denise Simone at denise@companyoffools.org for more information. Submission deadline is May 1.

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