GM Ole Opry
The brainchild of local classic-country aficionado Dean Farnum, the theme of a “Grand Marais Ole Opry” was conceived in the halls of Sawtooth Elementary School in a conversation with pre-school teacher and local musician Amanda Hand. A fan of Amanda and her steel-guitar-playing father, Cal Hand (A Prairie Home Companion house band alum), Dean had a vision of a classic country and old-time music showcase featuring talented regional and local musicians. The North Shore Music Association signed on as event organizer and host, and the first Opry was held at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts in January 2014, hosted by WTIP’s “Classic Country” host Carl Solander. Four years later, the Opry is still going strong and has become one of Cook County’s most popular annual music events. Wowed by a fresh slate of highly skilled, charismatic, and energetic performers each January, Opry audiences revel in tunes made famous by artists such as Hank Williams Sr., Patsy Cline, The Louvin Brothers, Johnny Cash, and the Carter Family, as well as original tunes written by the artists in classic country and old-time style.