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We’re Hiring!

Headwaters Music & Arts invites you to join our team! We are seeking a part time bookkeeper as well as part time piano, guitar, violin, percussion and vocal instructors to help us provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and to inspire the community through music and the arts. Headwaters Music & Arts is an independent non-profit music and art program  located in the heart of downtown Bemidji. We were established in 1992 by a small, determined  group of visionaries with the goal to provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and  inspire the community through music and the arts. 

If these roles sound like something you would love to do, please apply by submitting a resume and three references to Executive Director, Tricia Andrews. Submit via email ( or by snail mail (519 Minnesota Ave NW, Bemidji, MN 56601). If you're not looking for a new role, we'd love for you to forward this message to folks in your professional and personal network who may be interested.

For each of these positions see the position descriptions below or call 218.444.5606 for more details. Thanks for helping us to spread this message! We're looking forward to having new members join our team soon!

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GivingTuesday With HMA on November 30

Headwaters Music & Arts takes part in the global giving campaign, GivingTuesday, on November 30. GivingTuesday is a global movement to celebrate a global day of generosity. It was launched in 2012 to make giving more central in daily life and is an opportunity for people around the world to come together to thank, help, give, show kindness, and share what they have with those in need. People can show their generosity in a variety of ways during GivingTuesday⁠⁠—whether it’s helping a neighbor, advocating for an issue, sharing a skill, or giving to causes—everyone has something to give and every act of generosity counts.

Headwaters has planned several GivingTuesday initiatives. They will show their appreciation for their downtown neighbors by personally delivering plates of home-made, heart shaped cookies on November 30, and will hold 24 hours of gratitude, posting on Facebook and Instagram throughout the day the many things we are grateful for. Headwaters will also kick off their end of year stewardship campaign on GivingTuesday. "Each donation helps us give the life-long gift of creativity to another young person through our music and art scholarship program" said Executive Director Tricia Andrews. "We are excited to have a chance to simply show our gratitude for the support we receive every day of the year." You can give early, or plan to give on November 30, here.

We invite you take part in Giving Tuesday with us virtually as well! Post about what you are grateful for in our community, or what you love about Headwaters, on Facebook or Instagram and use the hashtag #GivingTuesdayWithHMA and there is a good chance we will share your post and thoughts!



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Give to the Max 2021


Headwaters Music & Arts is excited to participate in the 13th annual Give to the Max taking place this year starting on Monday, November 1 and culminating on Thursday, November 18.  You are encouraged to give generously to your favorite Minnesota causes as part of Minnesota’s giving holiday.  We especially hope you give Headwaters a little love with a donation of $5 or more.  Each donation made through qualifies Headwaters for additional grants of $500 to $10,000 from the Give to the Max prize pool, thanks to the continued generosity of the Bush Foundation. While we put every donation to good use through our music and art scholarship program, just imagine what a difference $10,000 would make! To contribute to Headwaters Music & Arts on or before November 18, just go to our page on GiveMN. Thank you so much for your generous support!

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Headwaters Music & Arts COVID 19 Safety Protocol Update

Headwaters Music & Arts COVID 19 Safety Protocol Update

Face masks covering your nose and mouth are required to enter Headwaters Music & Arts.

Adults may meet without wearing masks. Non-vaccinated adults are strongly encouraged to wear face masks while in the building.

Adults interacting with youth must wear masks.

With guidance by Executive Order 21-11, as amended by Executive Order 21-21, other safety procedures for lessons and classes remain in place through May 27, 2021 including:

   • Complete health screening upon entering the building

   • Do not enter the building if you are ill

   • Wash your hands when you arrive

   • Maintain 6 feet distance from others

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Long-sleeve Logo Shirts and Becoming a Member

We have been making good progress improving the inside of our building these last few years, including a new music and art resource library, improved lighting in our art space, and a new performance hall stage. We'd now like to give a little love to the exterior of our building. Headwaters has a goal of $15,000 for outside improvements this coming year. Our main project? A new entrance sign! Our current sign is faded and weathered, and it is past time to update it with our new logo. You can help! We have three easy-peasy steps:

  1. Purchase a Headwaters shirt, hoody or long sleeve tee! We have 5 designs to choose from and will take orders through Sunday, November 29 (they make great gifts!)
  2. Become a sustaining member! Starting at $5 a month, sustaining membership allows us to count on you throughout the year. If you choose to support Headwaters by committing to an annual contribution as a sustaining member this year, please accept a Headwaters pin or black, book bag or t-shirt. We are excited to have our very own “swag” to offer as a gesture of our appreciation. These items are also available for sale on our website. Check them out!
  3. Make a one time donation of any amount. Annual membership donations begin at $50.

Thank you for your support!

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Letter to our Headwaters Music & Arts Community


To our Headwaters Music & Arts community,

At Headwaters Music & Arts (HMA), we believe that all people are amazingly unique, extraordinarily beautiful, and treasured as sacred. We value differences in age, cultural background, experience, education, ethnicity, family structure, gender, lifestyle, religious background, perspective, and other aspects that make us each who we are and recognize that without diversity, our world wouldn’t exist. Particularly the world of music and art! Imagine if every composer wrote the same song or every artist painted the same picture. How bleak and boring this world would be!

HMA has been working to ensure our processes, policies, and behavior uphold the values of equity and inclusion. Our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusions policy states:

To provide informed, authentic leadership for cultural equity, HMA strives to:

• See diversity, inclusion, and equity as critical to our mission and well-being of our staff and the people we serve.
• Acknowledge and dismantle any inequities within our policies, systems, programs, and services, and continually update and report organization progress.
• Explore potential underlying unquestioned assumptions that interfere with inclusiveness.
• Advocate for and support thinking about how systemic inequities impact our organization’s work and how best to address that in a way that is consistent with our mission.
• Commit time and resources to expand more diverse leadership within our board, staff, committee, and advisory bodies.
• Lead with respect and tolerance. We expect all board members, employees, and volunteers to embrace this notion and to express it in HMA interactions and through everyday practices.

HMA demonstrates its commitment to diversity through:

• Recruitment, retention, and inclusion strategies
• Employee training and professional development
• Financial assistance and volunteer time programs
• Program participant and community surveys
• Outreach events and performances
• Evaluating the HMA environment to ensure it is accessible for all

HMA is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in all programs, activities, and interactions. We also welcome and invite you to share your ideas and talents to help us better serve our community. HMA has many exciting and important volunteer opportunities available, including leading our organization into a better future through board membership.

Thank you for your continued support of HMA, we appreciate you!

The Headwaters Board of Directors & Administrative Staff

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COVID-19 Response Update

These past several weeks, we have responded to the pandemic by suspending group activities, moving to virtual lessons, and performing administrative tasks from our homes. We thank you for sticking with us as we figure out how to fulfill our mission in previously unimagined ways.

On May 14, Gov. Tim Walz announced the plan to reopen non-essential businesses as early as May 18 as long as they follow health and safety guidelines. At Headwaters Music & Arts, we plan to have limited building hours starting June 1, typically 11 to 5 Monday through Thursday. Please call ahead to ensure someone is on hand to help you out. If you would like to purchase Schmitt music, accessories or instruments or perhaps sign up for lessons or for summer or fall programs, we look forward to seeing you!

What’s changed - It’s terribly important that we have steps in place that keep our staff, students and volunteers safe. We want to do things right. Our preparedness plan follows CDC and MDH guidelines, including having everyone who enters the building complete a health screening process, additional hand sanitizer stations, and several plexiglass barriers, face shields, gloves, and masks in place for lessons and classes. We will revise and update our procedures as needed.

What’s happening this summer - Along with reopening the building, we will hold a very limited number of in person music lessons in large performance spaces, and work on our plan for the fall. We have some great summer camp sessions starting in July. Fingers crossed that we will be able to hold them! Our Bemidji Sings! Vocal competition will still take place, but with a virtual August 6 final show. Details are on our website and on Facebook.

Then what? More change. We realize that we need to figure out new ways to provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and inspire the community through music and the arts, especially our group activities such as youth and adult pottery, art clubs, and community events. Please check back here to see the latest updates. What hasn’t changed? Our commitment to our community. Our determination to be there for you.

Thank you for your patience and understanding. Thank you for being here for us.

Tricia Andrews, executive director
Headwaters Music & Arts Board of Directors


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Letter from the Director


These past weeks have been a time of uncertainty, adaptation, and change. Despite our best efforts, each day situations and questions arise that catch us off guard. Despite our worst fears, we see glimmers of light and possibility that give us hope and encouragement. Here is an update from this past few weeks: The First City Singers and First City Bell Choir are Headwaters programs. The volunteer organizers suspended their rehearsals and performances until further notice.

We cancelled our events and workshops, including the April 18 Monroe Crossing concert, the Dave Cofell concert, and the April CoffeeHouse Open-Mic night. At the same time, we initiated the option of holding one-on-one music lessons via online platforms such as Skype, Google Duo, or Facetime.

After Monday’s executive order, we closed the building to the public and moved to holding all music instruction through E-lessons. It has been a high learning curve for our instructors and for students and their families, requiring extra communication and cooperation to figure it all out. So far, about 20 of our 255 music students have withdrawn because they had to relocate due to the emergency, because they lack technology, or because they do not want to do lessons remotely. Our music program coordinator Jessica Westlund has worked super hard on this whole process. When my next note reports that we weathered this difficult time and are stronger and better for it, please remember that it will be largely due to Jessica’s attention to detail, her kindness, and her grit.

Until Monday evenings’ order, we thought we could still hold our after-school art clubs, pottery programs and chess program because each group was fairly small. However, on Tuesday we announced that these classes will not be held during the temporary closure.  Depending upon the length of the closure, Headwaters will either extend the programs into the spring or provide refunds. We will stay in regular contact with participants as the situation develops. Art instructors have been offered the option to tackle building or admin projects these next couple of weeks rather than lose the income they would have gotten through delivering these classes.

We are adjusting our projected cash flow to reflect these changes, recognizing that there are certainly more changes ahead of us. The biggest financial pinch is the cancellation of the Monroe Crossing concert, which we expected would our biggest fundraising event this year. There may be a way to conduct an online fundraising event this year, or perhaps do an online auction of the great raffle prizes we have collected. This is just one of the issues to figure out, very soon. For right now, I am in communication with the band and with Paul Bunyan Playhouse to come up with a date for spring 2021.

While we are still in reaction/survival/compliance mode, offering music lesson online has presented some intriguing questions: Will our students make big leaps forward with all the additional practice time at their disposal? In the future, can we deliver all make-up lessons electronically? Can we regularly offer E-lessons in addition to in person lessons? Can we hire instructors who live in other parts of the state or country to teach E-lessons? Once we are on firmer ground with our technology options, can we reach out to youth and adults who live in other parts of the region or the state? Or the country? Rather than simply accept that we will have a drop in student involvement, can we attract new students in the Bemidji area who are hungry for music enrichment in their lives? Will families, seeking creative outlets, be eager to purchase keyboards, guitars, ukuleles, or violins from us? Again, while much is uncertain, it feels good to even imagine there is an upside to all this, and to take action when we can.

In addition to responding to the Covid-19 concerns, our ongoing work continues. We had a very full house for our February 22 music and art instructor showcase. Such talented people around here! Many of our students came to support their instructors. I especially like the picture below of Carolyn receiving a flowers from her student Hannah. It reminds me that we are a community, and that we all have something to offer. Not just instruction and guidance, but also encouragement, kindness, and a generous spirit.

We are working on policy updates, establishing online data storage and better communication processes. Our board is tackling a long range planning process this spring. We have Region 2 Arts, Minnesota State Art Board, and Bemidji Area Arts Endowment, United Way and other grants to submit, report upon, or both. We are seeking additional board members. We have made some building improvements, including new carpeting in several music studios, and are taking bids for a sewer line replacement project for this spring. With the hope that we are still able to offer summer camps, we are working on securing funding and getting the word out about some really fun summer programs. We now have a gumball machine in the lobby, with a portion of the proceeds going to our scholarship programs. Plus, gumballs are just plain fun.

Thank you for your support and investment in Headwaters Music & Arts. We are especially grateful that right now we are on solid enough footing to be able to support our staff and our Headwaters family, address infrastructure needs, continue to keep our doors open, and imagine brighter days ahead.
If there is any way we can be there for you, please let me know.  I feel the need to close with the same message I’ve been using in my updates: Be safe.  Be brave. And let’s continue be there for each other.

With appreciation,

Tricia Andrews, Executive Director