The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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September 5, 2013

Time to play: Bethany instructor's handmade instruments on display

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Claw hammer player Dick Kimmel from New Ulm came over to Mankato last week to try out a couple of banjos and he's played other creations by Ouren.

"I love playing his instruments," Kimmel said. "Some have a unique sound; for instance, the ones made from gas cans."

He plans to play a couple of the banjos tonight, so he can get to know them and their tonal qualities. Kimmel will perform one selection with a violinist, but specific playlist has not been decided for the performance.

"Sometimes, when you pick up a banjo and begin to pick, the songs will write themselves," Kimmel said.

Ouren, who took home the Best of Show award from Arts By the River this past June, will display some of his instruments this weekend from his vendor's booth at Rock Bend Folk Festival in St. Peter.

If You Go What "Inside and Outside Tradition: The Stringed Instruments of Eric Ouren" Where/When Through Sept. 28 at Ylvisaker Fine Arts Center, Bethany Lutheran College, 700 Luther Drive, Mankato Gallery hours 1-9 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays, and 1-8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays Reception/demonstration 7 p.m. today at the gallery

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