It’s official! Guinness recognizes Grand Rapids Last fall, after visiting the Judy Garland Museum with her family earlier that summer, a nine-year-old Ohio girl dreamed to break the world record for the most dressed-up Wizard of Oz characters. Reece Veatch contacted Guinness World Records and called the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minn., to ask for help in reaching her goal. The Museum board, staff and volunteers took on Reece’s challenge and worked closely with 14 area nonprofits to break the record and hold it for Itasca County. On June 13 this dream became a reality – the old record of 446 held in England was smashed with 1,093 participants in Itasca County. After reviewing a slew of video and photographic evidence, along with official certifications; Guinness World Records, based in London, made the Itasca County record official on Friday, July 25.
Coronado Library To Host Special Exhibition And Oz Con Opening Aug. 1 The Coronado Public Library is hosting a special exhibition on the Wizard of Oz and the Opening Reception of Oz Con International on August 1 at 6:30 p.m. Admission and viewing of the exhibition is free, and a talk with slide show will be given by Angelica Carpenter, former President of the International Wizard of Oz Club, at 7:30 p.m. in the Winn Room. The exhibition will feature first editions of books by L. Frank Baum, as well as other authors such as Ruth Plumly Thompson, who carried on the Oz series after Baum’s death. Baum also wrote under several other names. Foreign translations and special editions will be displayed, along with Oz character dolls and merchandise. Original artwork from some of the first illustrated Oz books will also be on exhibit. The Wizard of Oz on stage and screen will have its own display section. As part of the exhibit, the original art of Eisner Award-winning artist Eric Shanower will also be on view.
Coronado Playhouse To Host Oz Special Aug. 1 The Coronado Playhouse will host “Journey Through Oz – a Musical Cabaret” Friday, August 1. Come for happy hour at 6 p.m. The musical cabaret will start at 7 p.m. with an opportunity to meet and greet the performers afterwards at 8:30 p.m. There is be drink specials and an opportunity drawing for two tickets to a 3D screening of The Wizard of Oz to be shown August 7. The Coronado Playhouse is located at 1835 Strand Way. Tickets can be purchased at www.coronadoplayhouse.com. The Coronado Playhouse will also perform at Spreckels Park as part of the free community festival where “The Wizard of Oz will come to life in the Emerald City with a celebration of art, music, and dance on Saturday, August 2, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.