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A concert for the animals

Ivory Band plays as part the second Humane Society of Goodhue County’s Bluegrass Benefit concert Saturday Feb. 22 at the Sheldon Theatre.

Calling all animal and bluegrass-music lovers alike. The Humane Society of Goodhue County will hold its second annual Bluegrass Benefit Saturday Feb. 22 at the Sheldon Theatre.

Last year’s inaugural show was described as a lot of fun by Anna Ostendorf, Humane Society of Goodhue County executive director. She explained the nonprofit hopes to have a more financially beneficial outcome this year.

“We are expecting a larger crowd and higher quality of music,” she said.

In fact, a decision was made to change the concert from the fall to the winter, Ostendorf said, not only because it’s the slower time for animals coming in to the shelter, but also to give people an opportunity to get out of the house.

“It’s a great time to have an event and for us to focus on,” she said.

Expect an eclectic mix of music from traditional bluegrass to old-style western music.

“It’s not country,” Ostendorf said, “more like cowboy troubadour music and poetry.

Guitarist and vocalist Kim Harrington opens the show. His interest in music began as a child and influences include bluegrass, gospel and cowboy music along the lines of Don Edwards.

Harrington writes original music and has performed across the states – including in the Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering in Sierra Vista, Ariz.

His original song “Riverman” was a featured track in a major Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Association album. Harrington has been a dog-lover his entire life.

Closing the show is the group Ivory Bridge with special guest Peter Ostroushko.

The band and group of friends including John Bodle, Jim Tordoff, Bill Liners and Kathe Liners share a mutual love of music in general — bluegrass in particular.

“Our name is meant to convey a sense of the lustrous natural quality of ivory that spans the traditional bluegrass styles with a contemporary feel and sense for modern acoustic music,” states the band. “A beautiful music respectful of its origins is the Ivory Bridge sound.”

This versatile band features solo, duet, trio and quartet vocal arrangements of original, gospel, new and traditional string band music, as well as original and traditional instrumentals.

Members say they love their music and love to share it with audiences.

The band has performed across the country and plays frequently throughout the Twin Cities area and at Crossings at Carnegie in Zumbrota.

Ostroushko has spent more than 25 years honing his skills on fiddle and mandolin and has been a frequent performer on National Public Radio’s “A Prairie Home Companion,” serving as its music director for a few years.

He's appeared on “Austin City Limits,” “Late Night with David Letterman,” and “Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood.”

With all the performers volunteering their time for the benefit concert, Ostendorf described how much it means to have support for such a cause.

“It’s amazing there are people out there, coming out of their way, to use their talents to help the shelter.”

Liners of Ivory Bridge said she’s had the privilege of loving and being loved by many cats and dogs in her life. “I am so grateful for this opportunity to show my appreciation for these fuzzy souls that have done so much to enrich my life every single day.”

Proceeds from the show go directly to the local humane society, a nonprofit animal shelter serving the City of Red Wing, Goodhue County and much of Pierce County by providing shelter for homeless animals, promoting pet adoption and responsible pet ownership, and also preventing animal over-population.

The majority of the society’s funding comes from individuals and fundraisers.

“We have the potential to generate $4,000 from this benefit. For us that is a huge amount of money to cover some very needed supplies and vet expenses,” Ostendorf said. “And it’s a really fun event for everyone.”

Information about adoptable pets will be available in the lobby area prior to and during the show.

Order tickets at

For information about the performers, visit and Learn about the Humane Society of Goodhue County at

If you go … What: Kim Harrington, Ivory Bridge and Peter Ostroushko.

When: 7 p.m. Saturday Feb. 22

Where: Sheldon Theatre, 443 W. Third St.

Why: Humane Society of Goodhue County benefit

Cost: $15 adults, $10 students

More info: 651-388-8700 or 800-899-5759, or

Stacy Bengs-Silverberg

Stacy Bengs has been a photojournalist at the Red Wing Republican Eagle since 2010. She holds a bachelors degree in journalism and art from the University of Minnesota.

(651) 301-7880