He’ll be presented with the Northwest Star Award

    Three awards are given each year to recognize artists and arts advocates within the Northwest Minnesota Art Council’s seven-county region who stand out in terms of artistry or volunteerism in the arts.

    “Of the Year” Award winners were nominated by area residents, and this year’s recipients are Jim Kent of Crookston, Scott Pream of Thief River Falls, and Betsy Saurdiff of Grygla.   

    • Jim Kent will receive the Northwest Star Award. Kent is a musician and previously a school teacher in the Crookston School District.  He is active in the Crookston arts community through the community theater, Civic Music League, Pirate Fine Arts Boosters, Community Oratorios and his church. This award comes with $5,000. Artists can only receive our Northwest Star Award once, as a lifetime achievement award.

    • Scott Pream will be awarded the Northwest Artist of the Year Award.  Pream is an extraordinary actor who also works behind the scenes to help others shine. The Artist of the Year award can be given to any discipline artist including visual, performing, or creative writing who are emerging or at a mid-way point in their artistic endeavors. It is a cash award of $500.

    • Betsy Saurdiff will be awarded the Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year Award. Saurdiff is an art teacher in the Goodridge School District. She is passionate about the visual arts, an accomplished artist who works primarily in ceramics and encourages art exploration in her community. The Arts Advocate of the Year award is $500 and includes arts from all disciplines.

April 28 is the big day    

    These “Of the Year” awards and the NW Art Exhibit awards will be presented at the Northwest Minnesota Arts Exhibit Reception on Saturday, April 28 in Thief River Falls at the Ralph Engelstad Arena at 2:30 pm. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. to view the 99 pieces of regional artwork on display in the REA lobby and to vote for people’s choice. At 2 p.m. enjoy a snack and music entertainment. The program will begin at 2:30 p.m. with the main focus being the recognition and celebration of artists and the arts in northwest Minnesota. Everyone is welcome to this free event.

    In addition, there will be an Arts Expo starting with a VSA presentation by Executive Director Craig Dunn at 11 a.m. in the Dakota Room. This is for artists with disabilities, as well as arts leaders or other organizations trying to provide access to people with disabilities. Roundtable presentations by representatives from numerous arts organizations will be held from noon to 2 p.m. in the Imperial Room. Organizations represented include Minnesota Citizens for the Arts, Springboard for the Arts, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Jerome Foundation, the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council, the Playwrights’ Center, Minnesota Music Coalition, Northern Clay Center, Minnesota Association of Songwriters, Minnesota Theater Alliance, Minnesota Fringe Festival, Nemeth Art Center, Women’s Art Institute, North Dakota Museum of Art, Minnesota Arts Online, Explore Minnesota Tourism, and the Teaching Artist Roster Program.

    For more information about the Arts Exhibit or the Arts Expo visit http://www.northwestminnesotaartscouncil.org/2018/03/arts-expo-will-be-april-28-in-thief-river-falls/

    Funding for Northwest Star and Northwest Artist of the Year comes from The McKnight Foundation. Funding for Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year comes from the Minnesota State Legislature.