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'Come and enjoy the music of the holidays': First Lutheran Church to host lunchtime Advent Mini Concerts three Wednesdays in Dec.

Ginny Klein, front, and Holly Heisserer will perform piano duets on two separate pianos for the First Lutheran Church's first Advent Mini Concert of this season, coming up on Wednesday, Dec. 6. The free concerts take place over the noon lunch hour. A free-will-offering soup and sandwich lunch follows each concert. Submitted photo1 / 2
First Lutheran Church's own "Alleluia Ringers" Bell Choir will close out the church's series of Advent Mini Concerts on Wednesday, Dec. 20. Choir members include, front row, left to right: Holly Heisserer, Marlys Douglas and Ginny Klein. Back row: Carla Hanson, Sharon Wesbrook and Dan Berg. Submitted photo 2 / 2

First Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes is ringing in the holiday season with a series of lunchtime Advent Mini Concerts, continuing a 17-year-long tradition at the church.

Free and open to the public, the concerts will run from 12:05-12:35 p.m. on the three Wednesdays that lead up to Christmas—December 6, 13 and 20. A light lunch will follow each concert, with free will donations accepted for the lunch.

"We want to extend the invitation to everybody in the community to come and enjoy the music of the holidays," said Holly Heisserer, the leading coordinator of the mini concerts. "This is a time for some reflection and relaxation, and some time to listen to a little music."

Heisserer said the noon-hour concert times are designed with working folks in mind, fitting within the typical workday lunch hour. But all are welcome, whether working or not.

"It's for people coming off work, or even if they're not at work, to come on their lunch hour for some rest and quiet time during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season," she said.

This year's performers will include a Celtic harpist, singer/guitarist, pianists, bell choir and more. All have local ties.

"We always try to give a variety every year," said Heisserer.

Those who choose to stay for the free-will-offering lunch will be treated to fresh-made soup, sandwiches and desserts made by First Lutheran Church member Dave Johnson and his cooking crew.

First Lutheran Church is located at 912 Lake Avenue. Following is this year's concert lineup.

December 6

12:05-12:20 p.m.: Celtic harp by Tami Jenson

Jenson, a Detroit Lakes area harpist, has performed at a variety of community venues in the past. For this performance, she will capture the flavor of Celtic holiday music.

12:20-12:35 p.m.: Holiday piano duets by Ginny Klein and Holly Heisserer

Klein and Heisserer, both Detroit Lakes residents, will play holiday duets, with the two pianists playing two separate pianos. Klein is a retired educator; Heisserer is a retired piano teacher.

December 13

12:05-12:35 p.m.: "Off Duty Chief" Tim Eggebraaten, singer/guitarist

Retired Detroit Lakes Police Chief, Tim Eggebraaten, will bring his signature brand of humor and song to the church stage for this holiday show. A well-known local singer and guitarist, Eggebraaten has shared his music and stories at performances all over the area since 2003.

December 20

12:05-12:20 p.m.: "Flutes and Keys" by Dotz Johnson, Carol Turner and Connie Wood

Johnson and Turner will play the flute, with Wood accompanying on piano. All three are local musicians.

12:20-12:35 p.m.: "Alleluia Ringers"

First Lutheran Church's own bell choir will close out the season with a performance of holiday songs.

Marie Johnson

Marie Johnson joined the Detroit Lakes Tribune as a reporter and magazine editor in November 2017 after several years of writing and editing at the Perham Focus. She lives in Detroit Lakes with her husband, Dan, their 4-year-old son and toddler daughter, and their yellow Lab.

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