Friday, June 22, 2018

New Executive Director Named at AmadorArts

At a recent Board of Directors meeting of AmadorArts, aka Amador County Arts Council, the group accepted the resignation of Terra Forgette as Executive Director and named Meghan O’Keefe as her replacement.  Citing her new priority to be with her family and 16-month old daughter, Forgette has stepped down after heading the non-profit organization since November of 2012. Her accomplishments have led the arts agency to become a major catalyst for community arts involvement, and through her efforts, a movement is afoot to establish an Amador Center for the Arts.  Stating at the Board meeting, “It’s been an honor and a joy to work with AmadorArts,” Forgette recommended that Meghan O’Keefe who’s been Program Coordinator for less than two years, take on the top position.

Initially O’Keefe spear-headed the continuation of TGIF Free Summer Concert Series. Then, she enthusiastically learned the ropes from Forgette, including grant writing, public relations, promotions, and community engagement. O’Keefe continues to oversee the coordination and administration of AmadorArts programs including Poetry Out Loud, Arts Around Amador weekly radio show, the Amador Alliance for Arts Education, Student Voices Campaign, Open Mic and more. Most notably, O’Keefe and the Alliance collaborated with ACUSD in 2018 to adopt the “Declaration of Equity in Arts Education” and to participate in the Arts Planning Initiative, a stakeholder workshop series aimed to develop a district-wide arts education plan for our community.

O’Keefe is a professional scientist and arts education leader for over 20 years. A graduate with honors from the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts, O’Keefe also holds a Bachelors Degree in Biology from Oberlin College. O’Keefe is a connoisseur of the literary, music, dance, theatre, broadcasting, culinary, and landscape arts. Upon accepting the position, O’Keefe stated: “I look forward to developing stronger ties with national Arts leaders as AmadorArts continues to grow. With the continued support of our donors, volunteers, and the community-at-large, AmadorArts is going to continue to create jobs, draw tourists, and provide Arts Education and  exposure to all cultures and citizens of Amador County, especially the children.”

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Music all Weekend at Feist Wines: Two for the Road and The Blackfoot Gypsies - June 15 & 16

Two for the Road and The Blackfoot Gypsies

Sutter Creek, California, June 2018 - Feist wines summer music series continues Friday, June 15  at 6 p.m. with Two for the Road, and then Saturday, June 16 at 7 p.m. with Nashville rock band The Blackfoot Gypsies.

Two for the Road is a local duo comprised of Joe Bellamy and Adam Gottstein. They play a blend of latinjazz and Americana.  
The Blackfoot Gypsies are a Nashville, Tennessee-based powerhouse quartet with raucous energy and soul playing their take on white-knuckled rock'n'roll.

The Blackfoot Gypsies fuse their influences -- swamp blues cool, downhome hillbilly funk and homegrown punk panache with sparking and spitting 21st-century fire. They learned to rock the old-fashioned way -- one sweaty, full-throttle live performance at a time.  The band's brew of rock, hillbilly and blues began in 2010 when Oregon native, guitarist and singer Matthew Paige moved to Nashville and hooked up with drummer and Music City native Zack Murphy.   
They are sure to please the most discriminating palate and send the most reluctant feet to the dance floor. 

Feist will offer live music and dining most weekends all summer. 

Wood Fired Pizza and small plates are available at the shows starting at 5 p.m. Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday. Small lot wines can be purchased by the bottle or glass.

There is no cover charge Friday.  Blackfoot Gypsy tickets are $15 and are available at or at the tasting room. 

15 Eureka Street Sutter Creek, CA 95685 (209)267-8020  

AmadorArts Open Mic Night - Thurs June 21

Come and meet the new MC, and everyone is welcome to perform at the Third Thursday Open Mic Night in Jackson. That’s June 21, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at Mountain Ice & Coffee at 42 Main St.  Organizers AmadorArts introduces R. Scotty Coleman tonight as the new Event Coordinator of its organization.
R. Scotty Coleman spent seven years performing Improv and Stand-up comedy in night clubs and theaters with the Improv group R.S.V.P. in Sacramento.  Over the past 10 years Scotty has been teaching Improv at Amador, Argonaut, Calaveras and Summerville High Schools.
Invited to this free Open Mic event are individuals who feel they’re ready for an audience to perform dance, singing, musical theatre, Shakespeare, poetry, oratory, instrumental music, stand-up, and improv.  Equally important are people IN the audience who appreciate seeing who have entertainment gifts to share.

Fine culinary arts will be present such as Temple Coffee, roasted in Sacramento, and rated one of 17 of the nation’s best small coffee makers; Dreyers Ice Cream; and Kneading Dough’s locally baked goods.
Group Art Analysis also is a fun monthly part of Open Mic, in which a local visual artist brings in an artwork and guests take a stab at discussing it, all in fun.

The atmosphere is relaxing with comfy couches and chairs. Sign-ups are first-come-first-served, starting at 5:30 pm. Mountain Ice & Coffee phone number is 209-256-8005. Regular hours are: Wednesday thru Sunday from 7am to 7pm. AmadorArts is 209-267-9038, email

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

TGIF Concert features the Slade Rivers Band at Preston Castle - Fri June 22

The Slade Rivers Band is so popular that AmadorArts is having them back in the very same venue as two years ago. Yep, that would be the shady patio behind the imposing Preston Castle. The TGIF fun starts at 6:00 pm on June 22. Bring your chairs and picnics. Parking is free, entry is free.

A local honky tonk band, the members are;  WC Slim (Steve Doss) upright bass/vocals, Michael Bowers drums,  Bill Griffin electric mandolin/vocals, "Flying" Eugene Flowers on pedal steel guitar and Slade Rivers vocals/guitar.  The band has been together for over 10 years and has played just about every watering hole in northern California, county fairs, and cowboy festivals. Musically they're a holdover from the golden years of Hank Williams, Lefty Frizzell, and George Jones.  Currently the band has two CDs available for sale; Slade Rivers and Friends and The Songs of Slade Rivers and Beans Sousa.  Just like their hit song says, “You’ll get your head bobbin’ and your arms flapppin’/pretty soon you got the whole dance floor clappin’ to the chicken butt shuffle.”

They are presently at work on their third CD.  You can follow the band on or"

In Ione, head to the Preston Castle. Turn on Palm Drive off Hwy 104 and you’ll see the parking on the side. Concert is in the back. Visit for more info about TGIF concerts.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Call for Amador Poets - Deadline June 30 for Poet Laureate Nominations

If you are a poet or know someone who is, please be advised that nominations are open to launch the first-ever Amador Poet Laureate Program.

The position of Amador County Poet Laureate, as established by AmadorArts, will honor local outstanding poets, integrate poetry into the community, enrich the education of our young people, and enhance the County’s position as a cultural center. Appointments will be for two-year terms. The honorary position is without salary.

The deadline to submit a nomination is June 30 and may come from individuals or organizations within or outside the county. The poet must reside in Amador County, and poets may self-nominate.  Nominating is easy.

Each nomination should contain:
1. Cover letter from the nominator identifying the nominator and/or the nominating organization with the recommendations for the nominee.
2. Name and short biography of the poet nominated (or resume) with contact information, a website address (if applicable) and a statement of interest by the poet (if not self-nominating).
3. Three to six poems by the poet.

The Poet Laureate’s named duties over the period of his/her appointment include:
1. Presentations of his/her poetry at a Amador County Board of Supervisors meeting.
2. Presentations at other appropriate public events, at least once each quarter for his/her term.
3. Advocacy of poetry in the community, including, but not limited to, bringing poetry to school children, projects or programs that promote the appreciation of poetry, or poetry workshops with underserved populations in the community.

A qualified selection committee will convene from July 1 through September 1st followed by the Amador Poet Laureate announcement. If the person selected has physical limitations, AmadorArts will assist in accessibility during the public presentations.

To receive more information, contact AmadorArts at  Follow AmadorArts on Facebook or call 209-267-9038.  Info is also on Mailing address is P.O. Box 206, Sutter Creek, CA 95685.  Physical address is 11-A Randolph St., also in Sutter Creek.

Dana Gioia, current California Poet Laureate, was welcomed in Amador County at several events In June of 2017.  The title of Poet Laureate is a time-honored tradition.  In 1668, England officially established the post as a royal office. In the 19th century some local Poet Laureates were recognized in their communities. In 1937 the U.S. created the position of National Poet Laureate. The position of California Poet Laureate was established as a part of the California Government Code in 2001 through AB 113.

Monday, June 4, 2018

TGIF Concert June 15 will be at Sutter Creek’s Hanford Courte

Big City Swing Committee is a band from Los Angeles that will be performing upbeat, high energy music, while providing laughs and just plain fun.  Retro swing and blues are combined with audience participation to immerse the TGIF crowd at Sutter Creek’s Hanford Courte directly in the show.

When the six-member group gets started at 6:00 pm you’ll recognize the retro hits from swing and blues musicians such as Ray Charles, Louis Jordan, Count Basie, John Lee Hooker, James Brown, Louis Armstrong, Fats Domino, and Muddy Waters. They’ll also get into some Italian songs in the style of Louis Prima.

Get ready TGIF fans! This band is unique in that it provides a refreshing new kind of experience where the focus is on the audience as well as the band, using humor, contests, and participation. AmadorArts is proud to present Big City Swing Committee for the first time in its summer series of free concerts which has been in existence for 20 years!

Bring your chairs and picnics. Parking is free as well and is on-site at 128 Hanford Street, or old highway 49. Make the turn up the hill and you’ll see the grassy terraced amphitheatre on your left.  The setting is park-like with gardens and shade from big old oak 
trees.  Visit for more info about TGIF concerts.

Friday, May 25, 2018

MSTW opens their 15tth Summer Season with “Mama Won’t Fly” - June 22 thru July 21

JACKSON, CA  – This year, Main Street Theatre Works (MSTW) celebrates its 15th Year at the beautiful Kennedy Mine Amphitheatre in Jackson. Kicking off their 2018 Summer Season, MSTW presents Mama Won’t Fly, by Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope and Jamie Wooten, and directed by Allen Pontes, who brought you last year’s huge hit Doublewide, Texas, also by Jones, Hope & Wooten.

Mama Won’t Fly is a hilarious, family-friendly comedy, that will have you laughing your way across the USA. Savannah's brother is getting married in four days and she's trying to get Mama to the big day ~ from Alabama to California. But things get complicated when Mama won't fly. Amador local, Mitch Alaire plays feisty Mama Norleen Sprunt, who manipulates an unexpected road trip with her daughter Savannah (Kelley Ogden) and future daughter-in-law, Hayley (Janey Pintar). It’s a race against the clock, met with every conceiveable, and inconceivable mishap available, including a car theft, a near-fatal visit to the Underwear Museum, a hijacked eighteen-wheeler and a detour to Vegas that ends in a brawl with an ordained showgirl/minister. Over twenty different characters are played by five different actors (Amanda Aldrich, Lee Marie Kelly, Janet Motenko, Brandon Rapoza, & Scott Taylor) in this fast-paced tour across America.

Mama Won’t Fly runs June 22nd - July 21st. 

Main Street Theatre Works is a professional, non-AEA theatre company, performing in the heart of Amador County. Now entering its 24th season, MSTW continues to be dedicated to bringing professional-quality artists together to produce plays that stimulate both artists and audiences.

Patrons walk past an old tailing wheel (used when the mine was in operation), across a bridge, and onto a grass-covered, terraced bowl. There the stage is set for picnicking and quality theatre under the stars. You are truly sitting on a gold mine.

Performances are Friday and Saturday nights, with gates opening at 6:30, show starting at 8:00. Patrons are encouraged to come early with picnics, chairs and jackets. Only service animals allowed. The Kennedy Mine Amphitheatre is located at 1127 N. Main Street in Jackson.

Performance Dates and Times
Fridays and Saturdays
Gates open at 6:30pm for picnics. Show starts at 8:00pm.

Mama Won’t Fly
June 22nd - July 21st

Ticket Prices
Adults - $20.00
Seniors: $17.50
Youth 18 & under - $12.00
Family Pack (2 adults/2 students) - $54.00

Tickets available at the gate, Hein & Company in Jackson, or on-line at

Brandon Rapoza and Janet Motenko as multiple characters, Kelley Ogden as Savannah