Celebrate the Bard & FOW April News

Please join us Sunday, April 22nd (3:00 pm)  at Island City Brewing Company in Winona. Enjoy some snacks, grab a beer, and help us celebrate spring, Shakespeare, and Season 15. We’ll be acknowledging the Friends of Will for their volunteer service throughout the year – and if you’re not already a Friend of Will, you will have an opportunity to learn about what they do and sign up to help for Season 15. Learn more about Bard, Beer, Birthday here

Behind the scenes with the Friends of Will
Friends of Will have been helping behind the scenes with mailing projects and providing food for a small group of company members who attended the March Design Conference.  Team Leaders are meeting  with GRSF staff to plan season Friends of Will activities.  Please check this blog throughout the spring and summer for updates.

Save the Date!April 22
The GRSF second annual Bard, Beer, Birthday celebration will be Sunday, April 22nd at Island City Brewing Company. There will be snacks, music,  and recognition of the Friends of Will.

Front of House
Signing up for specific times and positions for Front of House Volunteers (ushers, concessions during the Apprentice production) begins early May.  Check this newsletter for updates.ates.

Hospitality Team Tech Week is  June 9 – 27
The hospitality team will once again be  providing meals to company members during the busy tech week.  Meals will be provided several days starting June 9 and continuing through June 27.

Winona arts thriving because of community’s great people
Winona Daily News, March 9, 2018,  River Arts Alliance column by Eileen Moeller, GRSF  Sales and Marketing Director

Season 14 (2017) Friends of Will Annual Report

Thank you Friends of Will
(A short video from the 2017 Apprentice Acting Company)

Join the Friends of Will

(General FOW registration for new FOW or FOW who did not volunteer in 2017 or 2016.)


Thank you, Friends of Will

Many of you worked with the Hospitality Team bringing wonderful meals to the company during the hectic tech week.  100 Friends of Will greeted and assisted patrons as Front of House ushers, ticket takers or at the concession stand. Many other FOW worked behind the scenes providing transportation to and from area airports, hosting company members during the early housing period, helping them move in and out of their apartments, or distributing  Festival brochures throughout Winona and the region.  Your work is sincerely and gratefully appreciated by Great River Shakespeare Festival staff and company members.

Select the link below to view a delightful  video thank you from the Apprentice Acting Company.

Thank you, Friends of Will

Friends-of-Will-logoThe Friends of Will leadership team welcomes new steering committee members. We are inviting other FOW to become part of the leadership team.  If you want to learn more about this fun and rewarding leadership opportunity, please contact Mary Alice Anderson, FOW Steering Committee chair.  You may also contact other team leaders or Aaron or Eileen at the GRSF office.  While you are at the office enjoy the ghosts of King Richard’s victims.

ghosts - 1





Creative Dramatics for Grownups

Finally an acting class for adults!

Have you ever wondered what goes into making a play come to life, or how actors begin their training? Would you consider trying (testing?) out your own talents? Would you enjoy playing fun, interactive dramatic games and exercises? This evening is open to anyone: novices, experts, shy folk, public speakers, teachers, retirees and anyone that wants to laugh. Participation is always optional creating a safe space to explore the dramatic arts.
Kacie Mixon instructor
Fee: $20 for a one hour sessionTo learn more and to register , please follow this link.

Will Run & Front of House volunteers needed, Hire an Apprentice (June 30)

Help with the 4th annual Will Run,  July 16th 

Will Run is the only 28-Furlong Race (that we know of) in existence.   Volunteers are needed to help support the run and the runners as they run or walk around beautiful Lake Winona.
Details and schedule
~ When: July 16, 2017 at 8:00 a.m.
~ Where: Begins at Lake Park Bandshell in Winona, and the track follow the path around the big lake.
~ 2 volunteers are needed for each position

  • Route Safety  –  Washington Street, 7:50 am
  • Route Safety  –  Huff Street, 7:50 am
  • Route Direction/cheerleading!  –  Curve by Hospital  –  8 am
  • Route Direction/cheerleading!  –  Curve by bridge  –  8 am
  • Route Direction/cheerleading!  –  Stay on bike path by tennis courts  –  8 am
  • Route Safety  –  Hamilton Street  –  8 am
  • Route Safety  –  Franklin Street  –  8 am

All volunteers are invited and encouraged to come for donuts, bagels, coffee… at the Bandshell after the last runner/walker goes by your station!!  Hats are provided for race participants as part of the race packet this year. Volunteers can purchase a hat for $10.00 just below actual cost!    To help and join the fun contact: Dee Cipov, deecipov@gmail.com
Or, register for the race. This is your chance for a personal best! Run 28 Furlongs (about the length of a 5K) with the GRSF Company and community

Front of House Openings
There are some open spots for ushers and ticket takers.  Visit Volunteer Local to sign up and check for openings. There may be last minute openings as people cancel. Sign up for a position at http://grsf.volunteerlocal.com/volunteer/
Questions? Contact Sheri Grossardt, Front of House Team Co-Leader

Front of House Training Materials

Hire an Apprentice
We have apprentices who are interested in working and patrons who are interested in hiring apprentices. If any Friends of Will have a job for an apprentice, please contact Valerie Williams, GRSF Education Director.   Email her your name, phone number, email, and a brief description of the work involved. She will share this information with the Apprentices. It will be up to the Apprentice to make contact with the FOW if they are interested in working. Jobs can be emailed to education@grsf.org.

Front of House Training Materials

Front of House training materials
These files are provided by the Performance Front of House Manager and the GRSF Audience Services Manger.  The PDF files include helpful information and contact information.

GRSF Preshow and Emergency Procedures

About the shows 2017

Instructions for Ushers

Thank you, Hospitality Team

GRSF company members love the Friends of Will Hospitality Team!  Special thank yous to Karin and Jim Worthley, team chairs, and Terry Hawkings who planned the menus and organized these very much appreciated tech week meals for hard-working company members. If you would like to help contact Karin or Jim. There are more meals ahead. And, thank yoiu to Steak Shop Catering for supplying a steam table, salad bar and commercial refrigerator, and to the many Friends of Will who are hosting each of the meals.

thanks_smallerThankyouFOW - 1 (1)ThankyouFOW eating

Usher Training, volunteer openings, June 2017

Front of House Training: June 14 or 15
New ushers and ticket takers are strongly encouraged to attend Front of House Training June 14, 6:30 PM or June 15, 1:00 PM at the WSU Performing Arts Center. Returning Front of House volunteers who would like a refresher are also invited to attend. WSU Campus Map

Front of House volunteer openings
There are remaining open Front of House positions, especially in July. Select Volunteer Local to sign up for a position.  There may be cancellations or additional positions added so heck for openings throughout the season. If you would like to be on a waiting list please contact, Sharon Grossardt, Front of House Team Co-Leader

Volunteer Local Tips
To review your volunteer positions go to Volunteer Local.   Select the check your status link;  enter your email address.  A list of what you have volunteered for will arrive in your email.




You can also cancel a shift online.


Costume Shop and Hospitality Volunteer Opportunities
The  costume shop welcomes new people who would like to help with some hand sewing. The shop is located in Valencia Hall on the Cotter/St. Mary’s Campus at the corner of Villa and Howard.  Contact: Stephanie Jones, Shop hours are
Tuesday-Thursday 9-6; Friday 9-5; Saturday10-6; Sunday 10-4; Lunch is 12:30-1:30.

Thank you to knitters at Yanrology including FOW Amanda Bauer, Jennifer Georgieff , and Blandine Berthelot for knitting chainmail cowls and sleeves for Richard III costumes. GRSF actor Stephanie Lambourn models a cowl.

The Hospitality team welcomes new cooks and hosts to help with June tech week meals.  Menus for June 13 – 18  are in the Doodles below.  Select a doodle to “sign up”; Contact Karin or Jim Worthley to help with the Hospitality/Food Team.  It’s fun and a great way to interact with other FOW and GRSF company members.

Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Pasta Bar, Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Roast Ham and Turkey Dinner, Friday, June 16, 2017
Baked Potato Bar, Saturday, June 17, 2017


The team needs containers for leftovers.   If you have some to get rid of please deliver them to the “food room,” 103 Minne Hall on the WSU campus.

More photos of Season 14 in progress
Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/GreatRiverShakes/
Instagram https://www.instagram.com/grshakes including the including the one above that shows off Stephanie Lamborn, Rebecca Bernstein’s costume design, and the chain mail knitted by Aaron Young and the volunteers at Yarnology.