The Creative Corner: Did you hear what's happening in Wadena?

Staying attuned to your community can help you stay involved and not miss out when opportunity knocks.

A blue background with the text reading, "Norman's Creative Corner, Lead for Minnesota fellow" and a picture of a woman.
Monthly column from Lillian Norman, Lead for Minnesota fellow serving the city of Wadena.

The grass is green, the sun is out, the sky is blue, and finally, yes finally, summer has come to stay. Summertime, as many people know, is a time when there is no shortage of events happening. Just this month, for instance, Wadena had the June Jubilee, the All-School Reunion, and the Fishing Tourney—which is not even an exhaustive list of the events occurring in June! With so many things going on in the summer, it can be difficult to go to them all or keep up with everything that is going on, but if you want to fully enjoy everything that summer has to offer (or perhaps you might want to know about them all so you can choose to go to only the best), then I have some tips for you to consider.
The most important aspect of staying involved with the fun is staying informed about what is happening in your community and the surrounding area. There are multiple ways of doing this, and to stay the most involved, it may be necessary to use all of them to some extent. Luckily, none of them are particularly difficult to do! As most of you must know, the first way to know what is going on is by reading the paper; the paper is a great place to look for press releases, fliers, and advertisements for events that organizers want you to attend—the radio is similarly a great place to listen. Another is paying attention to community calendars, such as the Chamber of Commerce’s, the city’s, and any other maintained calendar that you know of. The third is by keeping an eye out around the town for fliers placed on business doors, banners on the sides of streets, or bulletin boards. Lastly, ask the people you know! Maybe you missed a broadcast, poster on a door, or newspaper issue, but your friend did not. Then, not only will you learn about something fun, but you might also have someone else to go to it with.
Event organizers want to make sure that you have every opportunity to learn about what they are doing because they want you to come.

Having a volunteer group of people who can help advise and plan for artistic and creative ventures in town would benefit those already involved in the arts in town, and further grow opportunities for others to engage in the future. Such a group could work towards making Wadena into a center for the arts for the years to come, helping each other and helping the area focus on creative issues that need the most attention.

Whatever outreach method works best for you, keep a pulse on it. There are many pieces that must come together for a good event, but ask anyone who has put on a festival to a birthday party and they will tell you that the most essential of any event is: you! Even the party of the century would be a complete failure if no one came.
And speaking of events going on in the area, remember that the Wadena Farmers Market is going to have some fun creative events this season. Through a Five Wings Arts Council grant, they are putting on events every second and fourth Friday of the month during their regular market hours, 2 p.m. through 5 p.m. And yes, they are free to come and enjoy!

Lillian Norman is a fellow with Lead for Minnesota serving the city of Wadena on artisan economic development. Email her at

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