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County Seat to stage 'The Trip to Bountiful'

The cast of the County Seat Theater Company's upcoming performance of "The Trip to Bountiful" is in full dress rehearsal this week as they prepare for their performances Sept. 26-29 and Oct. 2-6. All performances are at 7:30 p.m., except for Sunday's 2 p.m. matinees. Tickets can be reserved at the theater's box office, 218-878-0071.

Horton Foote's touching American classic, "The Trip to Bountiful," tells the story of Carrie Watts (played by Ellie Martin), an elderly woman who dreams of returning to her small hometown of Bountiful, Texas, one last time, against the wishes of her overprotective son (played by Rick Breuer) and domineering daughter-in-law (Ruthie Zissos). Her journey becomes a heartbreaking but ultimately life-affirming and inspiring tale that examines the fragility of memory and celebrates the enduring power of hope and faith.

"The acting in this production is so convincing the audience will be captivated," said Joel Soukkala, general manager. "The audience is sure to fall in love with Martin's character like she is their own grandmother."

As she proceeds to Bountiful and makes a lonely pilgrimage she comes across ticket takers (Jim Jurek and Kirk Davis), a traveler (Elizabeth Halaas) and a kindly sheriff (Harold Haapoja).

"Director Mary Smith has added her own unique touches to this show to make the experience even more enjoyable," Soukkala said. "The quiet moments, the simple hymns and the slowly rising sun warm your heart as the story concludes."

"The Trip to Bountiful" is an evening which will prove to be an indelible memory.

Performances are Sept. 26-29 and Oct. 2-6 at 7:30 p.m., except Sunday performances at 2 p.m., at the Encore Performing Arts Center in Cloquet. Tickets can be reserved by calling the box office at 218-878-0071 or online at

A special art show featuring themed works will be in the Encore gallery. The show will feature pieces by local artists and is open to the public.

Since 2008, the County Seat Theater Company has been located in the Encore Performing Arts Center, at 2035 Highway 33 S. (on Frontage Road) in Cloquet. The theater offers a full season of local performances, as well as youth productions, musical acts and has an art gallery featuring work by local artists.