Monday, March 31, 2014

Saint Mary’s to host Row, Ride, Run Triathlon

WINONA, Minn. — The annual Saint Mary’s University “Row, Ride, Run Triathlon” will take place on Saturday, April 26, beginning at 9 a.m. at Lake Lodge in Winona and finishing on SMU’s Winona campus. About 150 athletes from throughout the Midwest are expected to register for the race.

Participants will canoe or kayak a 2.5-mile loop around Lake Winona, then bike 14 miles from Lake Winona to the SMU campus. Once on campus, racers will run 3.1 miles through the bluffs surrounding the university.

Proceeds assist Serving Others United in Love (SOUL), a collaborative program between a student organization and SMU’s Office of Campus Ministry. Through SOUL, students are able to connect with diverse communities by participating in national and international service trips.          
Registration is $35 per individual or $70 per team. Teams can be made up of two, three or four members. The deadline to register is Sunday, April 20, and racers must provide their own canoes or kayaks.

Awards will be presented to the top three fastest individuals and the top finishing teams.
Participants must be 10 or older to row or run and 15 or older to bike.

For more information, visit or call (507) 457-7268.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Former FDIC chair to speak at April 6 Saint Mary’s event

WINONA, Minn. — Each year, the Hendrickson Institute for Ethical Leadership sponsors a forum that brings an internationally renowned leader to Saint Mary’s University’s Twin Cities campus for a keynote address. This year, the keynote address will be live-streamed to Saint Mary’s Winona campus on Tuesday, April 8.

The public is invited to hear the Honorable Sheila Bair, former chair of the FDIC during the Great Recession. Bair is an exceptional leader, speaker and commentator on the fiscal health of the United States and beyond, and was named the second most powerful woman in the World by Forbes magazine in 2008. Her address is titled “Main Street vs. Wall Street and the New Financial Paradigm.”

In addition, Chris Policinski, CEO of Land O’Lakes, will be awarded the Hendrickson Medal for Ethical Leadership. The event will be moderated by Fred de Sam Lazaro, director of SMU’s Under-Told Stories Project and a correspondent for PBS NewsHour.

The community is invited to watch the event live in three locations at SMU: Page Theatre, Room 9 of the Toner Student Center, or the Common Room, located on the third floor of Saint Mary’s Hall.
The full event will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. The welcoming remarks and presentation of the Hendrickson Medal for Ethical Leadership will occur between 11:30 and 11:50 a.m. Bair’s remarks will take place from approximately 12:10-1:15 p.m. (There is a break in the event from 11:50 a.m. to 12:10 p.m.)

For more information, go to

SMU volunteers to participate in ‘Spruce Up Winona’ April 12

WINONA, Minn. – The Saint Mary’s University Volunteer Mentors are encouraging Winona nonprofit agencies to submit requests for service.

Saint Mary’s student volunteers will be available from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 12, to help local individuals, groups, churches and organizations in recognition of the ninth annual “Spruce Up Winona Day.”

Do you need someone to help with your spring-cleaning, to rake leaves, to do some painting, or to help with construction? Saint Mary’s will supply the workers, if you supply the materials needed (paint, brushes, rakes, tools, etc.).  

Requests must be made by Tuesday, April 7, to Chris McClead at (507) 457-7268 or Please indicate what you need done, how many students could finish the job and where you are located.

Paulson, Heukeshoven to preview jazz performance

Eric Heukeshoven and John Paulson

WINONA, Minn. — The jazz duo of John Paulson, flute, and Eric Heukeshoven, piano, will present a Winona preview of their upcoming performance at FluteFest 2014 in the Twin Cities. The duo will perform a short recital of jazz selections on Wednesday, April 9, from 12:30 to 1 p.m. in Saint Mary’s University’s Figliulo Recital Hall.

On Saturday, April 12, the Saint Mary’s music faculty members will be featured performers at the Upper Midwest Flute Association’s annual FluteFest at Hamline University in St. Paul. (More information is available on the UMFA website: The featured guest artist at FluteFest 2014 is internationally renowned jazz flutist and composer/arranger Jim Walker.

The Winona preview event is free, and the public is invited to attend.

For more information, contact Heukeshoven at (507) 457-7292 or

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Saint Mary’s students to talk about solar panel initiative

WINONA, Minn. — Students raising money for the Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Solar Panel Initiative will give a public presentation at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 2, in Watters Hall.

Saint Mary’s students are hoping for a surge of supporters — and $20,000 — to help bring solar panels to the Winona campus.

According to student organizer Conner Ellinghuysen, the addition of a 16.4-kilowatt system will reduce the university’s carbon footprint, save the university money, and provide educational experiences for students.

Hear more about the project at or go to

Friday, March 21, 2014

SMU jazz groups present ‘A Night in Havana’ April 4

A. Eric Heukeshoven (right) with colleagues from the American Composers Forum Cuba delegation including Dr. John Paulson (second from left) and New York composer Peter Flint (center) take a break during the Havana Jazz Festival in December 2013 to interact with two Havana jazz musicians. 
WINONA, Minn. — It’s been a long winter, but things will heat up as Saint Mary’s University’s Music Department presents “A Night in Havana” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 4, in Page Theatre.

Inspired by the music and rhythms he experienced while visiting Havana, Cuba last December, SMU jazz studies director A. Eric Heukeshoven and the talented student jazz musicians will bring music written and inspired by Cuban composers back home to Winona.

From Caravan – Duke Ellington’s collaboration with Juan Tizol – to Chick Corea’s La Fiesta, the concert will trace the threads of Cuban culture and its extraordinary contributions to jazz.

Special guests for the evening include a select group of percussionists led by SMU World Drum Ensemble director Dennis McGuire. The group will join the celebration on authentic Afro-Cuban instruments.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors and are available by calling the SMU Box Office, (507) 457-1715, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, or online at

For more information, please contact A. Eric Heukeshoven at (507) 457-7292 or

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

SMU to host two volleyball camps

WINONA, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University will host two girls’ volleyball camps July 20-31 for students entering grades six through 12 in the fall.

This first camp, “Session I,” is for girls entering grades six through eight and will be held Sunday, July 20, through Thursday, July 24. The second camp, “Session II,” is for girls entering grades nine through 12 and will be held Sunday, July 27, through Thursday, July 31.

These camps provide a great experience for players who want intense work in a competitive atmosphere. Seventy-five percent of the focus will be on individual skills, and the other 25 percent will be on team play. Mike Lester, SMU’s head volleyball coach, will lead this camp with the assistance of SMU women’s volleyball team members.

For commuters, rates are $375 before April 15 and $400 after April 15. Residential rates are $425 and $450. Register and pay online at by June 27. This registration fee includes lodging and meals, as well as access to the Recreation and Athletics Center, indoor pool, weight room, dance studio, hiking trails, disc golf course, track and soccer complex, ropes course and more. For more information, call (507) 457-6921.

Registration open for MCA spring, summer programming

The new Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts spring and summer 2014 catalog is now available. New programming includes a workshop in partnership with the Minnesota Marine Art Museum, as well as a playground “Stomp” workshop during Screen Free Week! Registration is now open.

Class days, times and tuition vary. Financial need-based scholarships are available. For a brochure and a complete listing, visit, e-mail, “like” them on Facebook, or call (507) 453-5500. Interested students may register online, by mail, or in person at MCA’s Valéncia Arts Center.

The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts offers programming in dance, music, visual art and theatre year-round. Classes, lessons, workshops and camps are offered for youth ages 3 and older through adults at the Valéncia Arts Center, 1164 West 10th St.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

SMU benefit raises $14,000 for Richter

Approximately 575 people came to listen to the Johnny Holm Band during the Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance March 15.
This year's beneficiary Jason Richter with his wife, Tina, and their three sons, Jackson, Carter and Gus.

WINONA, Minn. — More than 575 people attended Saint Mary’s University’s 14th annual Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance on March 15.

Proceeds from the dance — and a silent auction held on campus — raised more than $14,000 for this year’s beneficiary Jason Richter, who worked at Saint Mary’s from 1998 to 2010 in Student Activities and was once responsible for overseeing this same benefit event. Richter, who currently lives in Davenport, Iowa, is formerly of Rollingstone, where he served with the volunteer fire department and was an active community member.

Prior to being diagnosed with multiple myeloma last summer, Richter had pain in his lower back that turned out to be a mass. This is a disease that is more commonly found in people around the age of 60; because of his young age, he has responded well to treatments. He has undergone 10 radiation sessions, as well as recent bone and stem cell transplants. On top of that, the Richter family lives an hour away from the hospital Jason is receiving treatment at in Iowa City.

Although now in remission, Richter is still undergoing chemotherapy treatments. This year’s proceeds will assist his family, which includes three young sons, with their medical expenses and travel costs.

The benefit has become an annual student tradition since its start in 2001 in honor of Taylor Richmond, son of SMU staff member Nikki Richmond and Nick Richmond. Each year this event benefits someone in need who has ties to the SMU community. Although Taylor passed away this past October, his memory lives on at Saint Mary’s.

Donations are still being accepted; send checks — payable to the Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance — to Lance Thompson, Saint Mary’s University, 700 Terrace Heights #1528, Winona, MN 55987.

SMU band, wind ensemble concert March 30 celebrates ‘Music in our Schools Month’

Dr. David Leung rehearses with the SMU Concert Band, under the direction of Dr. Janet Heukeshoven.

WINONA, Minn. — The Saint Mary’s University Concert Band and Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Janet Heukeshoven, will present a concert Sunday, March 30, in celebration of “Music in our Schools Month.” The performance will begin at 3 p.m. in Page Theatre, located in the SMU Performance Center.

The featured violin soloist is Saint Mary’s Assistant Professor of Music Dr. David Leung, in a rare pairing with winds and percussion. The Concertino (1998) by Evzen Zámecnik is written in a modern jazz style combined with traditional classical violin techniques. Dr. Leung is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and is a frequent soloist and chamber music performer around the world. In his second year at Saint Mary’s, Dr. Leung teaches violin and viola, as well as ear-training courses, and he directs the SMU Chamber Orchestra.

Other performances will include: Bernstein’s delightful overture A Musical Toast, Eric Whitacre’s hauntingly beautiful October, Grainger’s Children’s March, and a recently published piece by Valerie Coleman, founder of the Imani Winds, Umoja.  Richard Strauss’s moving Allerseelen and Bencriscutto’s Lindbergh Jubilee round out the program.

Tickets are $10 for adults or $5 for students and seniors may be reserved at the SMU Box Office, (507) 457-1715, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or online at Tickets are also available one hour before the concert.

The SMU Concert Band is made up of SMU students and community musicians from the Winona area. The ensemble presents two performances each semester on the SMU campus. For additional information, contact Heukeshoven at (507) 457-1675 or

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Tribute concert to Victor Jara is March 27 at Saint Mary’s

WINONA, Minn. — A tribute concert Thursday, March 27, at Saint Mary’s University will celebrate the life of Victor Jara, the Chilean singer-songwriter, political activist and playwright assassinated during the Chilean military coup in 1973.

On the 40th anniversary of his death, the Stearns County Pachanga Society will perform Jara’s songs, with the lyrics projected in both Spanish and English. The contrast between the themes of his songs, on love, peace and social justice — and the brutal way in which he was murdered — transformed Jara into a symbol of struggle for human rights and justice worldwide. Based in St. Cloud, the Stearns County Pachanga Society is an ever-evolving, ever-growing organic musical experiment that aims to combine the musical spirit of Cuban Cabildos, Brazilian Samba clubs, and Spanish Charangas with danceable rhythms from all over the globe.

The event, scheduled for 7:30 p.m., will be held in Figliulo Recital Hall, located in the SMU Performance Center. The public is welcome to attend, free of charge. Co-sponsors include the Department of Modern and Classical Languages, the Intercultural Awareness Association and the Student Activities Committee of Saint Mary’s.

SMU students to promote state grant program March 27 at Day at the Capitol

WINONA, Minn. — 

One of the biggest ways that students and campus communities can have a major impact on supporting the Minnesota State Grant program is to participate in the Minnesota Private College Council’s Day at the Capitol.

On Thursday, March 27, Saint Mary’s students will have the opportunity to travel to the Capitol and tell legislators and the governor how important the Minnesota State Grant program is to them, their school and the state. This grant program provides critical support, helping make higher education possible for one out of three Minnesota college students from low- and middle-income families. The state invested $120 million in aid in the most recent academic year, helping more than 88,000 students.

After meeting with state legislators, students will have an opportunity for a Q&A discussion with Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau, a 2003 SMU undergrad alumna and 2006 master’s alum, and Don Winger, program director of the B.S. in Police Science program on the Twin Cities campus.

Students interested in attending are asked to register online at SMU hopes to send 50 students and employees to the Capitol this year.

For more information, contact Ann Merchlewitz at

Monday, March 10, 2014

Minnesota printmaker features new works in SMU art show March 13-April 6

'For Want of the Inferno' by Emily Gray Koehler

WINONA, Minn. — White Bear Lake printmaker Emily Gray Koehler will present 27 new works in “Burning the Old Growth” March 13 through April 6 at Saint Mary’s University.

Gray Koehler’s reduction woodblock prints are nature scenes informed by a childhood split between the farm and the forest. In this particular series, her work depicts the beauty of nature, depleted by man’s influence.

“Since its earliest beginnings, humanity has manipulated nature in the pursuit of prosperity,” she writes. “Without these alterations to the environment, our existence in this world would certainly be dubious. However, after millennia of digging, burning, harvesting, and draining we now find ourselves at a crossroads where all possible routes forward have significant obstacles and potent repercussions.”

The Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries, located in the Toner Student Center, are open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. All gallery shows are free and open to the public.

An opening reception is scheduled for 4:30 to 6 p.m. Thursday, March 13.

For more information about Gray Kohler’s work, go to

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

SMU Music Department to showcase original faculty compositions March 15

WINONA, Minn. — Original compositions by Saint Mary’s University faculty composers Dr. Patrick O’Shea and A. Eric Heukeshoven will be featured at a recital Saturday, March 15, at Saint Mary’s. The biennial “Composers Recital,” which will begin at 6:30 p.m., will include world premieres of two works, music with poetry, and a wide variety of contemporary compositions.

New music by Dr. Patrick O’Shea, director of choral music, includes the premiere of Vezzosi augelli, written in 2012. SMU alumni Brigid Ryan ’06 and Lindsy O’Shea ’05 will be featured on this vocal duet. O’Shea’s Sonata Piccola for violin and piano will feature the talent of assistant professor of music Dr. David Leung on violin with Jan Matson on piano. Originally composed as a single movement work, O’Shea has written an opening movement for the sonata to be premiered at this event. Poltergeist, the newest work to be performed, will feature Dr. Janet Heukeshoven, also of the SMU Music Department, on flute and percussionist Jeremy Johnston, a 2009 alumnus.

Assistant professor of music A. Eric Heukeshoven will present both choral and instrumental works. Just Believe, a work commissioned for the La Crosse Chamber Chorale’s Words to Music series, will be performed by members of the chorale, joined by students from SMU’s Chamber Singers. Heukeshoven’s wife, Janet, and flautist Amanda Moburg will be featured in selections from the composer’s 24 Duets for Two Flutes. Ted Haaland, founder of Great River Shakespeare Festival’s Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest, will introduce the duets with an original poem he composed for each of the selections.

The event — free and open to the public — will be held in Figliulo Recital Hall, located in the SMU Performance Center.

For more information, contact A. Eric Heukeshoven at (507) 457-7292 or

Saint Mary’s to stage musical comedy ‘Urinetown’ March 20-23

WINONA, Minn. — Water is scarce, but corruption flows freely in the Saint Mary’s University musical comedy production of “Urinetown,” March 20-23.

In a Gotham-like city, a terrible water shortage, caused by a 20-year drought, has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets. Water is worth its weight in gold. The citizens must use public amenities, regulated by a single malevolent company that profits by charging admission for one of humanity’s most basic needs.

A hero plunges forward, deciding he’s had enough, and he plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Inspired by the works of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, “Urinetown” is an irreverently humorous satire in which no one is safe from scrutiny. For added fun, the show spoofs well-known musicals and itself. Director Dr. Gary Diomandes and musical director Judy Myers are flushed with excitement about bringing the hilarious tale of greed, corruption, love and revolution to life.

Books and lyrics for “Urinetown” are by Greg Kotis; music and lyrics are by Mark Hollmann.

The show will run 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, March 20-22, and 3 p.m. Sunday, March 23, in Page Theatre.

Tickets are $10 for adults or $5 for students and seniors and are available at the SMU Box Office, (507) 457-1715 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or online at

Monday, March 03, 2014

Award winners announced from regional science, engineering fair at SMU

WINONA, Minn. — One hundred and forty two students competed at the 61st annual Southeastern Minnesota, Western Wisconsin Regional Science and Engineering Fair, hosted by Saint Mary's University of Minnesota in conjunction with Winona State University on Feb. 28.  Students from nine local schools participated including: La Crescent Middle School, Winona Middle School, Bluffview Montessori School, Cotter Junior High, Chatfield Middle School, Chatfield High School, Cochrane-Fountain City High School, Cotter High School and Winona Senior High School.

Advancing to the International Science and Engineering Fair (May 11-16 in Los Angeles, Calif.) is Lucas Derbyshire from WSHS with his chemistry project “Optical Activity of Saccharides.” Alternate projects to ISEF were first observer Michael Oldendorf from C-FC High School with a project in Botany on “Effect of Indolebuytric Acid on Germination Rate” and second observer Matthew Dietz from Chatfield High School with a project in Medicine and Health on “ The Effect of Cell Density and Growth Supplements on Mesenchymal Stem Cell Attachment and Growth on an Artificial Matrix.”

Students who will be advancing to the State Science & Engineering Fair on March 30-April 1 for the Senior Division are: Shae Alcamo, Dicey Spring, Lucas Derbyshire, Ivan Kovala, Lucas Larson and Emma Walsky from WSHS; and Luke Dietz, Justin Friedrich and Matthew Dietz from Chatfield High School. Those advancing to the Junior Division are Max Derbyshire, Armon Parsi, Anthony Trombetta and Austin Weatherhead from Winona Middle School; Lincoln Salisbury from Chatfield Middle School; Julie Walker from Cotter Junior High; and Ella Baudek, Hannah Clarkin, Alex Bourdreau, Payton Dryden, Russell Drye, Garrett Fields, Molly Franzose, Keaton Keip, Michael Luoma, Grant Nutter, Jenny Olson, Connor Siegersma, Paige Pasvogel and Anastasia Veselovsky from La Crescent Middle School.

Students from Cochrane-Fountain City High School that will be participating at the Badger State Science Fair, to be held March 22 at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, are Anna Hoesley and Michael Oldendorf.

In addition to projects, students also will be presenting research papers. Advancing to state for the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium competition at the senior level are: Matthew Dietz and Justin Friedrich from Chatfield High School and Lucas Derbyshire from Winona Senior High. Students who will be advancing to state for the junior level are Austin Weatherhead, Parker Hawkinson, Anthony Trombetta, Max Derbyshire, and Evan Ferstl from Winona Middle School and Bennett Gathje from Chatfield Middle School.

Special awards were also given out.  The awards and the recipients are:
US Air Force:  Dylan Celius (Winona Middle School), Zach Roline (Chatfield Middle School), Nathan Graff and Connor Zukowski (Cotter Junior High)
American Psychological Association: Jenny Olson and Connor Siegersma (La Crescent Middle School)                  
Bartlett W. Foster Award: Luke Dietz (Chatfield High School) and Max Derbyshire (Winona Middle School)

Broadcom MASTERS: Anthony Trombetta and Max Derbyshire (WMS), Michael Luoma, Grant Nutter, Payton Dryden, Keaton Keip, Paige Pasvogel (La Crescent MS) and Julie Walker (Cotter Junior High)

Genius Olympiad International High School Project Fair on Environment: Payton Dryden (La Crescent Middle School) and Anthony Trombetta (Winona Middle School)
Mu Alpha Theta: Sang-Hyuk Lee (Cotter High School)                      
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Mitchell Williamson (Winona Middle School)
U.S. Metric Association: Shae Alcamo and Dicey Spring (Winona Senior High)

U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize: Emerald Thompson-Jereczek (Cochrane-Fountain City High School)

Winona State University Department of Chemistry Excellence in Chemistry Award: Lucas Derbyshire (Winona Senior High)
The fair committee would like to thank science and engineering contingent of the region for volunteering to be judges.