Category Archives: Local Arts

Winona Symphony Orchestra Welcomes New Board Members

Winona Symphony Orchestra is pleased to welcome its newest board members Alan Dunbar, Professor of Voice at Winona State University and renowned performer, Gary Evans, founder and retired CEO of Hiawatha Broadband Communications and recognized community leader, Dan Hall, Regulatory/Quality Systems Manager for RTP and active community volunteer, and Pamela Kimber, Director of Finance for Cotter Schools and super-mom to three young children.  With grateful recognition of the dedicated service contributed by several long-standing retiring members, the board looks forward to the energetic vision offered by its incoming members.  In the spirit of renaissance, both a revitalization of its administrative branch and renewed artistic initiatives propel the WSO into the next decade.  A diverse group of respected professionals, recognized for their executive and artistic talent, the WSO Board possesses the experience and knowledge to bolster the Winona Symphony Orchestra as an innovative and enriching arts organization within the Winona Community.  

About Winona Symphony Orchestra

Founded in 1908 by eminent composer Carl Ruggles, the Winona Symphony Orchestra is the oldest arts organization in Southeast Minnesota.  With a mission to provide enriching encounters with classical music through professional performances and stimulating education, WSO has historically offered three concerts each season including their popular Children’s Concert for area schools and students.  Proudly featuring some of the area’s finest professional musicians, the symphony is under the direction of Dr. Erik Rohde, music professor at University of Northern Iowa and prominent violinist and conductor.    

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The Winona Symphony Orchestra is a member of the River Arts Alliance. To learn more about the benefits of membership, please visit:

Member Spotlight: Jean Mueller

Jean Mueller is one of the new board members of the RAA and lives outside of Winona on a farm setting. Her lifelong love and practice of the arts began as an art student in high school and at Winona State University. The texture element of fiber brought contemporary fiber pieces to the center of… Continue Reading

Family Art Day — the 2020 Way

Due to COVID-19 restrictions and concerns, River Arts Alliance (RAA) was compelled to cancel this year’s Family Art Day. The event, usually held the first Saturday in September, was first held in 2008 and has 500-600 participants (depending on weather). Believing that ‘Art Never Stops,’ the board of directors at River Arts Alliance chose to… Continue Reading

Member Spotlight: Frank and Ruth Bures

For 40 years, you’ve seen this musical couple every Wednesday evening in the summer, playing clarinet in the bandshell. No doubt, you’ve stopped to discuss their musical t-shirts or listen to a bad dad joke or two from Frank. They are one of many couples who have helped make Winona a vibrant arts community over… Continue Reading

José Peláez: Local Graphic Artist

I’ve been doing graphic design professionally for the past 15 years, helping the Winona business community with graphics and branding services. I like to say I specialize in logo design and that my time is always spent helping a local business or organization. Occasionally I take on a project from out-of-town. When I do, it… Continue Reading

Creatives’ Convening

Friday | April 24 | 5:00-6:00pm Winona’s Creative Laureate Sarah Johnson will host a virtual happy hour for creatives of all kinds. The focus of this will be to connect with one another, check in on how creatives are doing, and share some strategies for self-care during this strange time. Sarah will be facilitating… Continue Reading

The State of the Arts (in Minnesota)

River Arts Alliance is committed to helping our community and members get the word out about the adjustments that we all must make during this time of national uncertainty. We will share information that is provided to us and keep our Facebook feed ( up-to-date as things progress. A few updates as of today, March… Continue Reading

Member Spotlight: Billy X. Curmano

Billy X. Curmano is an award winning former McKnight Foundation Interdisciplinary Art Fellow trained as a painter and sculptor (If, of course, painters and sculptors can be trained). His more traditional objects have been exhibited both here and abroad. Notably, his paintings represented the USA in the III Vienna Graphikbiennale. His works are included in the… Continue Reading

Member Spotlight: Terri Karsten

Terri Karsten has been a writer and educator all her life. After twenty-one years teaching high school English, she now works as a writing coach and focuses on writing historical fiction. Her debut novel, A Mistake of Consequence (2015, B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree) takes readers into 18th century Colonial America. Her second novel, When Luck Runs… Continue Reading