Around town

by Irene Grahek

ELY ON BROADWAY? That’s not as far fetched as it might seem and while you’re at it... think big! A musical “Don’t Hug Me” is being staged in Minneapolis right now at the Hennepin Stages Theater, formerly known as the Hey City Theater, located at 824 Hennepin Avenue and the story has an Ely connection. <BR><BR>How did this happen, you ask? Well, it seems that old saying “It’s who you know” that counts, and that’s how playwright, Phil Olson, now of Los Angeles found out about Ely, MN.<BR><BR>Phil has a friend, Chuck Melcher who is a brother of Barb Colvin of Cedar Lake (that is close by Ely as we say) who introduced him to Ely for some fishing and relaxation. Phil knew a little about Minnesota, having grown up in Edina, and after only a couple of visits to Cedar Lake, he fell in love with the town and its people.<BR><BR>Because of this love affair, he decided to write a musical along with his brother, Paul Olson who wrote the music. By the way these brothers have nicknames, Bear and Cub, so they fit right in with all the nicknamed folks of Ely. <BR><BR>The story is based on lifestyles and activities that he experienced when visiting Ely. It takes place in the dead of winter and centers around a couple who own a bar, and have a difference of opinion as to where they want to live. The husband wants to go to a warmer climate, and the wife wants to stay and “nair the twain shall meet.”<BR><BR>As time goes on, a salesmen comes from Ely and sells a Karaoke machine to this couple, and that is when things begin to happen. The music is generated from the machine throughout the play creating a number of amusing situations. Several Ely people have seen the play and say it is hilarious without making fun of anyone or anything. <BR><BR>Phil Olson has two other award-winning plays to his credit called “Crappie Talk” and “A Nice Family Gathering,” which were produced in Los Angeles and Minnesota to critical acclaim. “Don’t Hug Me” is his third national award winning play. <BR><BR>The play is on Wednesdays through Sundays, and the cost is about $25 and if you say “HUG” when ordering tickets, they will knock off another $5. The play is expected to run through the month of October or longer as the word gets out.<BR><BR>------<BR><BR>Small, Colorful, World... Had the good fortune to take a ride to Mille Lacs last weekend with Doris and Bud Adamic and what a sight it was. The trees with all their splashy reds, oranges and yellows with a backdrop of green pines was beautiful. I’m glad I wasn’t driving because it’s tough to keep your eyes on the road with all that splendor showing up on either side of the road. We also had the chance to see Tony and Mayme Schulzetenberg, former Ely teacher and librarian in the late ’50s and early ’60s, now residents of St. Cloud, and Mesa, AZ. <BR><BR>------<BR><BR>After two years I’m taking one less pill a day since they took Vioxx off the market. Judging from the comments, I don’t think anyone missed that announcement on TV or in the newspapers. I’m beginning to think that home remedies are not so dumb. And speaking of home remedies, I heard from a friend that 1 tsp. of mustard really does work in eliminating leg and foot cramps, because it really worked for her!<BR><BR>------ <BR><BR>My house a jinx? On two separate occasions this summer I’ve had guests come for a visit and they ended up in the emergency room and hospital in Ely and Duluth. I’m wondering, could it be my cooking? I’m happy to say both persons recovered and have said they aren’t afraid to come back for a visit.<BR><BR>------ <BR><BR>Thanks Department... To all who responded to the ad for an electritc typewriter. That was me behind the ad. I found one from Marlene McDonald of Eagles Nest Lake and I had to finish this column using it. I may be the only person on the planet still using a typewriter but until I go to computers, I’m happy! It was fun meeting new people and I have to say those ads do work.<BR><BR>Thanks to Pam Roberts for taking “thousands” of pictures of this aging columnist and being able to come up with a good shot! It’s not the photographer’s fault that she had to take a number of pictures... it’s the subject matter that presented the problem.<BR><BR>