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Benefit concert slated for Backus Auditorium


The fight to save Backus Auditorium in International Falls takes center stage tomorrow night at a benefit concert to preserve it.

An “artists’ showcase,” featuring Paul Severson and Friends, will be held there starting at 7:30 p.m.

For a suggested donation of $10 per person or $20 per family, the public can hear almost a dozen different groups perform on the impressive stage.

The Borderland Community Orchestra, with pianist Stephanie Hawkins, and the Fort Frances Highlanders are among the Canadian groups set to perform.

Other performers include Henry Wiens Contemporary Gospel Piano, Talia DeBenedet, Jill Warner, Gary Hooker, Dave Parmeter, and “Doug & Tom.”

Money raised at the event will go towards the “Citizens for Backus-AB” group initiative to purchase the building complex from the International Falls school board.

“With ‘Broadway over the Border’ always going over so well, we thought this should, too,” noted Kay Arnold of “Citizens for Backus-AB.”

Arnold said the event came together when Severson offered to do a concert. Before they blinked, she said there a list of groups and performers were eager to take part.

Arnold added people are bringing in donations every day to keep the auditorium open.

“It’s been going quite well,” she said, adding she only prayed it would be enough to save the facility.

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