Around the Town: Helena-area arts and entertainment news published July 14 | Local



Alive at Five

Helena classic rock cover band Ten Years Gone will perform July 20 at Pioneer Park as part of the Alive at Five free outdoor concert series in downtown Helena. 

Ten Years Gone is a classic rock, alternative and pop dance band. The band has been playing in Helena and the surrounding area since 2007 and has been a Best of Helena winner for the past seven years. 

Alive at Five runs Wednesdays from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. June 1-Aug. 3. 

Events at Lewis & Clark Tap Room

Cruz Contreras

Cruz Contreras, from The Black Lillies, performs on July 14 at Lewis & Clark Tap Room.

The following events are coming to the Lewis and Clark Tap Room:

  • Cruz Contreras, from The Black Lillies, performs on Thursday, July 14 from 7 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 the day of show.
  • Americana from The Runaway Grooms on Friday, July 15 from 7 to 10 p.m.

People are also reading…

For info on all shows: Lewis & Clark Tap Room, 1535 Dodge Ave., or call 406-442-5960.

Rappin Cowboy Chris Sand at The Myrna

“I can rap, and I can rhyme,” says Chris Sand, the Rappin’ Cowboy also known as the Sandman.

The prolific singer/songwriter, who’s put out 15 CDs and eight cassettes in a little over two decades, will be performing some of his newest songs at The Myrna Loy 7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 14.

The 70-minute performance will be followed by a brief interview by musician John Dendy and will be aired as a future Soundstage.

Tickets are $12 and available at 15 N. Ewing St., For more information, call 406-443-0287.


Montana Clay Tour 

Robert Harrison art

Robert Harrison is among the more than 40 artists who will show their ceramic art at the 2022 Montana Clay Tour. 

The 2022 Montana Clay Tour will happen Saturday and Sunday, July 30 and 31, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Over 40 artists will show their ceramic art at the six host stops in the Helena area, including Robert Harrison, Joe Crowley, Chip Clawson, George McCauley, Gisele Hicks and Tara Wilson.

Pottery, ceramic sculpture, and installation art will be on display and for sale throughout the event. Stop by the following host studios to learn more about what these ceramic artists have been making over the past year.

  • Robert Harrison: 2976 Baxendale Drive, Helena, MT 59601, (406) 442-2019
  • Tara Wilson: 64 Holmes Gulch Road, Montana City, MT 59634, (406) 426-0998
  • Joe Crowley: 1973 Oro Fino Gulch Drive, Helena, MT 59601, (406) 459-7263
  • Giselle Hicks: 4320 Barrett Road, Helena, MT 59602
  • Chip Clawson: 202 Pine Street, Helena, MT 59602
  • George McCauley: 926 5th Avenue, Helena, MT 59601

Artist Reception and ‘Live Poetry Showcase’ at The Myrna

Apsaaloke Two-Spirit poet Charlene Sleeper

Apsaaloke Two-Spirit poet Charlene Sleeper is one of four poets sharing her work at the ‘State of Love’ art reception and poetry showcase Tuesday, July 19 at The Myrna Loy Jailhouse Gallery.

Four poets will do a reading of their works at The Myrna Loy 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 19, following a reception for the ‘State of Love’ art exhibit in the Jailhouse Gallery.

The art show features works by queer artists and their supporters or allies. The free reception is from 5 to 7 p.m.

The poetry reading features works by Montana poets: Debbie Boyle, April Lemieux, Allen Ireland and Charlene Sleeper.

Sleeper, who is Apsaalooke, Southern Cheyenne, Arapaho and Chippewa Cree, is a Two Spirit poet, painter and eastern Montana human rights activist.

She is currently compiling a romantic love poetry chapbook and exploring her Montanan Two Spirit identity through acrylic painting.

She will present a talk about Apsaalooke Two Spirit historical roles, the impact of colonization/forced assimilation and the contemporary way of life in Montana urban, rural and reservation settings.

“There is power behind poetry,” says Janelle DeBray who has curated the art show and poetry event. “It encourages introspection and maybe even enhances our active listening skills. Our goal for the poetry showcase and talk from Charlene is to provide space for others whose marginalized narratives are not so often heard, even within the queer community.”

The Live Poetry Showcase will have an ASL interpreter. The cost for the showcase is $5.

The art show and poetry event coincide with Big Sky Pride Week in Helena, July 17-23.

For more info, visit or call 406-443-0287.

Expressive pastel portraits 

Connor Sleeper

‘Man by the Blue Wall’ was created by Connor Sleeper, a self-taught pastel artist showing his most recent work at Queen City Framing & Art Supplies during July.

Connor Sleeper, an emerging self-taught pastel artist, is showing his most recent work at Queen City Framing & Art Supplies during July. Sleeper’s work focuses on expressive portraits and figures in dry pastels. He is pulled toward poses which prompt visions of grief and breath, compelled by his own experience with depression. He wants to explore the bittersweet beauty inherent to loss, loneliness and pain.

Though Sleeper received his degree in music and English literature from the University of Puget Sound in 2017, his love of drawing has been constant. While working in Los Angeles after graduation he began to take his self-tutelage more seriously. This effort led to a creative residency in Massachusetts, after which he drove across the United States on a journey of self-discovery. Sleeper found himself in Montana as the pandemic began, and now lives here in Helena where his commitment to his practice has flourished.

All work on display at Queen City Framing & Art Supplies has been completed since January 2022. You are invited to an artist’s reception for Sleeper’s Pastel Portraits show on Thursday evening, July 14, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. at Queen City Framing & Art Supplies in the Lundy Center, 400 Euclid Avenue. You can call them for more information about Sleeper’s show at 406-442-2760.


The Dude returns to The Myrna Loy

The Big Lebowski

The iconic Coen brothers film ‘The Big Lebowski,’ with Jeff Bridges, Steve Buscemi, and John Goodman, is the focus of The Myrna Loy’s Brew & View street party and movie screening Thursday, July 21.

Just when you could really use a break from too much reality, The Myrna Loy comes to the rescue with this year’s Big Lebowski Brew & View extravaganza, Thursday, July 21.

After a brief hiatus for COVID, The Dude is back.

The Myrna Loy’s Brew & View organizer Linda Piccolo has quite a few surprises for partygoers.

She actually scored two Big Lebowski T- shirts from a Lebowski Bar in Reykjavik, Iceland, which she predicts will be much-coveted prizes.

Per usual, there will be a costume and trivia contest as well. 

So pull out your bowling shirts, your Jesus jumpsuits and Valkyrie maiden costumes.

“The Big Lebowski” stars academy award winners Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

The Coen Brothers cult classic follows an out-of-work slacker, pot-smoking, White-Russian-loving bowling fanatic, who is unwittingly involved in a kidnapping and ransom plot due to mistaken identity.

Quirky characters abound – from German nihilists, to thugs, to Jesus in a jumpsuit.

The Eat Street and Bad Betty’s Barbecue food trucks will be on hand, along with Blackfoot River Brewing Company’s beer tent.

So will Bloom Montana marijuana dispensary, which is bringing a tent with a replica of the Big Lebowski’s living room – complete with famous rug.

“My revelers will be able to get their pictures taken on the fake set,” says Piccolo.

You can also check out Piccolo’s famous White Russian brownies and possibly a sake-based White Russian cocktail.

The party starts at 6 p.m. and the film is at 8.

Tickets are $20 and include the film and three alcohol drinks, or $12 for non-alcohol. They can be purchased at or 15 N. Ewing St., 406-443-0287.


Montana Playwrights Network summer show opening

The Montana Playwrights Network summer show “The Perilous Plight of Pleasantville + A Golden Oldies Variety Show” opens July 21 at the Helena Avenue Theatre (HAT), 1319 Helena Avenue.

The show features an original comedy by Pamela Jamruszka Mencher written in the style of a 19th century melodrama about an intrepid librarian, Miss Britannica, who must save the fair hamlet of Pleasantville from the nefarious villains, Madame Gypsum and her sly henchman, Hench. The play is followed by an olio (variety show) featuring lively music, sketches and jokes such as were presented in 19th century Montana by traveling performers. This unique theatrical entertainment is a fast-paced, humorous family show, perfect for a summer evening out at the Helena Avenue Theatre.

Tickets are $22 for adults and $15 for children under age 12. Call or text 406-235-0353 to make reservations, or find tickets on

Helena movie listings


760 Great Northern, 406-442-4225,

  • Thor: Love and Thunder, PG-13
  • Where the Crawdads Sing, PG-13
  • Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, PG
  • Minions: The Rise of Gru, PG
  • Top Gun: Maverick, PG-13
  • Elvis, PG-13
  • Jurassic World Dominion, PG-13

The Myrna Loy

15 N. Ewing,406-443-0287,

  • Mrs. Harris goes to Paris, PG
  • Where the Crawdads Sing, PG-13


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