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‘tour de Fort’ ready for 97-98 season

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“tour de Fort” is gearing up for its fifth season with the sale of passports this weekend downstairs at the Fort Frances Public Library.

They’ll be on sale Saturday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and again Sunday from 1-4 p.m.—and only 200 are up for grabs.

“It might sell out on Saturday," noted "tour de Fort" president Dr. Ted Jablonski. "The buzz is out there.”

Unlike previous years, “tour de Fort" will be bringing in two mainstream plays this year. The first, "The Shooting of Dan MacGrew,” is a large cast musical comedy, which opens the season Friday, Oct. 17.

Manitoba Theatre Centre’s “Office Hours,” a hilarious situation comedy, will take to the stage Saturday, Feb. 7.

“Typically, we’ve done strictly music but every year we’ve gone a little theatrical," Dr. Jablonski said. "This year there happened to be two good plays and we decided, why not?”

Singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Connie Kaldor will perform Thursday, Oct. 30, U.S. singer Vance Gilbert takes to the stage Wednesday, Nov. 19, while the “Arrogant Worms,” a comedy trio from Kingston, Ont., are here Wednesday, Jan. 14.

Multi-Juno Award winner George Fox will wrap up the concert season Saturday, April 4.

“Connie Kaldor is phenomenal,” Dr. Jablonski stressed, noting she’s considered to be in the upper echelon of Canadian singers.

“A lot of people have done her stuff," he added. "What she does if fairly moving.”

Gilbert also is bound to wow audiences, a concert Dr. Jablonski said “tour de Fort” patrons should not miss.

“The guys who win the Boston singer/songwriter contest are phenomenal," he said. "He’s very talented and a good showman. He’s a great story-teller—people are going to love him.”

Meanwhile, Dr. Jablonski said the brand of comedy featured by the “Arrogant Worms” has won over young and old alike, and plays well to several different audiences.

“These guys are hilarious," he remarked. ”And they’re on their way up. They’re sort of becoming the darlings of the CBC.

“If you’re interested in a quiet classical night, this would not be it," he laughed. "It’s going to be brash although they’re clean. A lot of good comedy.”

But perhaps the highlight of the “tour de Fort” season will be country singer George Fox, who takes to the stage with a full six-piece band.

Even those who are not die-hard country music fans probably will find this show enjoyable, Dr. Jablonski pledged.

“He’s a class act," he said. "This should be a really nice show.”

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