"Handel's Messiah Rocks" opens Saturday at the Croswell.

Croswell Opera House to stage ‘Handel’s Messiah Rocks’

A modern treatment of a Christmas classic will hit the stage this season when the Croswell Opera House in downtown Adrian stages “Handel’s Messiah Rocks.”

“Handel’s Messiah Rocks” is a rock ’n’ roll adaptation of “Messiah,” the sacred 18th-century oratorio by George Frideric Handel. “Handel’s ‘Messiah’ is one of the greatest pieces of sacred music ever written,” said Jere Righter, the Croswell’s artistic director. “Even though it’s been updated in a modern style, the core message is the same as it’s always been. It’s an incredibly joyful celebration of the Christmas season, and I think Handel would be pleased to know that his music continues to speak to people all these centuries later.”

“Messiah” was originally written in 1741 with text drawn from the King James Bible. Its first performances included a series of charity benefit concerts that raised money for hospitals and to free people from debtors’ prison. Continue Reading

Melissa Snead is pictured at her store, Craft, which opened today in downtown Adrian.

New handmade gift store with Michigan emphasis opens downtown

Craft, a new gift store featuring handmade items with a Michigan focus, opened today in downtown Adrian. Owner Melissa Snead said the store features exclusively handmade items, about 90 percent of them from Michigan. Craft is located at 128 N. Main St. Snead has sold her own knitted and crocheted accessories since 2008 under the name Owl’s Nest, and decided to open a store after she started selling at fairs and meeting other artisans. The store has close to 100 people’s work represented. Continue Reading

Laura Parra stands in front of the former Red Door tavern, which she is trying to turn into a new cultural center in the Sunnyside neighborhood of Adrian.

Effort is underway for a new cultural center in Adrian’s Sunnyside neighborhood

Laura Parra had a dream — literally. One night a few years ago, she dreamed she was walking around the Sunnyside neighborhood east of Adrian when she saw a building, opened up like a garage, with Oaxacan-style ceramics lining the walls and people sitting at tables, working, creating art. That dream ended up being the inspiration for what Parra hopes will become a new center for community and culture in Adrian: the Sunnyside Cultural and Historical Center for Peace and Justice, to be located at 2471 E. Maumee St. in the building that was once the Red Door tavern. Parra said the center — which also goes by the abbreviated name of Sunnyside Center for Peace and Justice — could serve many functions. Continue Reading

Ann's By Design is at 118 W. Maumee St., next to the Brick Wall Pub and Grill.

Local needle arts store and travel agency team up for trip to Missouri Star Quilt Company

We love seeing local businesses try innovative things, and here’s a good example. Ann’s By Design, a needle arts store that opened earlier this year in downtown Adrian, is organizing a trip to the Missouri Star Quilt Company, a quilting destination that has gained nationwide fame. If you’re not familiar with the Missouri Star Quilt Company, you can click the following links to listen to an NPR story about the business or read about the founders being honored at the White House in May. The founders are credited with helping turn around their small town’s economy, and the business they’ve built has become a kind of mecca for quilters from all over. Ann’s by Design is hooking up with Horizon Travel and Cruises in Adrian to offer a four-day trip to Hamilton and the Missouri Star Quilt Company. Continue Reading

Benjamin Duke's "Dominating the Flux (Through Analogy Or Through Code)" is one of the pieces in Valade Gallery's new exhibit.

Moments in time captured in Valade Gallery exhibit

Valade Gallery at Adrian College is offering a drawing and painting exhibition titled “Perpetual Now” through Dec. 11. The exhibition showcases the work of five regional artists, Brandon Briggs, Jason E. Carter, Benjamin Duke, Deborah Rockman and Jessica Summers. A reception will take place from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 17, with a talk by Briggs at 7 p.m.

Works in the show capture specific moments in time, which are perpetuated with each viewing, allowing viewers to experience and mingle their own present with the “now” the artist displays. Continue Reading