Ashley Foster’s photos and paintings, displayed at The Zephyr, set the stage for the theatre’s progressive fundraising gala Sept. 25.

The movement-based art inspired by dancers emphasized the gala’s theme, Let the Art Move You, and was the first hint at the action-packed evening to come.

About 100 gala goers, divided into safe groups of 20, hopped on and off the Stillwater Trolley at four venues — The Zephyr, the Lumberjack Bar, Matchstick Restaurant, and the Andiamo Showboat.

The open-air trolley allowed everyone to enjoy the rainless, warm and beautiful evening.

A choreographed fight scene surprised guests at the Lumberjack Bar, and a ballroom dance demo delighted them at the Matchstick.

Aboard the Andiamo river boat, gala-goers heard music played by a saxophonist, pianist, professional singers from the theatre’s past performances along with young singers from The Zephyr’s children’s programs.

“At the end of the night, when guests returned to the theatre, everyone was riding high,” Zephyr’s Development Director Jessica Thiene said. “They were all super enthused about the gala and The Zephyr Theatre.”

Managing the many moving parts of the progressive event took a lot of cooperation and coordination.

“We couldn’t have presented this elaborate evening without the generous participation of Stillwater Trolley, the Lumberjack Bar, Matchstick Restaurant, and the Andiamo Showboat,” Thienes said.

There were 15 volunteers who kept the gala running smoothly.

“Our supporters got to see The Zephyr is working very hard to keep arts alive during the coronavirus crisis,” Thienes said

At the end of the event, gala-goers reinforced their appreciation with additional donations and increased sustaining memberships to The Zephyr.

“It’s this show of support that helps The Zephyr continue its good work,” Thienes said.

Theatre friends who missed the fun evening have a second chance to revel in the gala — and contribute to the theatre’s sustainability.

The event was filmed, and an exclusive virtual gala will air from 7 to 8 p.m. Oct. 9. An email with connection information will be sent Oct. 8. Tickets are $10 at


Girls Night Out, Oct. 3

Twin Cities-based singers Erica Hanson, Jen Urbach, and Allison Hutner are Girls Night Out. Their show is “Tribute to the Superstar Women of Country.” Their goal is “to celebrate the ladies who paved the way in country music, as well as those who came after them.”

Girls Night Out will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 3 on the outdoor stage at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N.,

Stillwater. Tickets are $20.

Purchase tickets online until 4 p.m. Oct. 3 at Walk-up ticket sales begin at 5 p.m. Oct. 3. Seating provided.

Social distancing observed. Masks required inside, recommended outside.

For more information about The Zephyr Theatre,

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