Now, that’s entertainment!

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That thunder on the horizon is coming from hundreds of beautiful olí high-rpm beasts warming up for Car díLane.

Fatherís Day weekend gets off to a roaring start this evening with the annual two-day, four-wheel extravaganza in downtown Coeur díAlene. Itís become the traditional summer kickoff to downtown festivities that include the likes of an amazing Fourth of July celebration and a massive street fair thatís part of Art on the Green in August.

But your entertainment pleasure doesnít end there.

The big news is that, thanks to the relentless pursuit of Coeur díAlene resident Marlo Faulkner, one of the most revered storytellers in American history is coming to town Sept. 14. Starting off as Facebook friends, Faulkner and Garrison Keillor this week cemented an agreement for the author, musician, jokester and genius to wrap up a national tour in the Lake City. Keillor wonít pocket a dime. The beneficiary will be Coeur díAlene Symphony, which also will perform on the North Idaho College campus just before Keillor takes the stage.

In 2017, Keillor was cut loose by Minnesota Public Radio over an accusation of inappropriate behavior. He returned to the stage, however, last December, and the tour that will bring him here sounds like a swan song on Lake Wobegon. Heíll be 77 in August.

What a gift to North Idaho and another treasure facilitated by Faulkner, perhaps this areaís most beloved zealot for the arts.

Keillor will be warming up the stage at Schuler Performing Arts Center in Boswell Hall on the North Idaho College campus for some fellow fabulous entertainers: Coeur díAlene Summer Theatre. Yes, the 2019 Summer Theatre season will delight audiences at the Kroc Center, but in an announcement last night from Executive Director Tracey Vaughan, Summer Theatre is returning to its original venue at NIC in 2020.

From Oklahoma! in 1990 to Mary Poppins in 2013, CDA Summer Theatre and NIC were inseparable. But in 2014, Summer Theatre moved to the Kroc Center, where the same level of professional theater thrilled packed houses. While Summer Theatre leadership is grateful for the Kroc hosting shows, itís clear that going back to North Idaho College represents a homecoming. And the lineup for the 2020 season feels extra special, with delights like The Fully Monty and Little Shop of Horrors headed this way.

In our beautiful backyard, Mother Nature is not to be outdone. Thank goodness, sheís always willing to share the stage.

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