Walking the Rocky Ridge Rock House Trail

Although the Rocky Ridge Farmhouse and the Rock House face different roads, they aren’t that far as a crow flies. In fact at the time they were built they were connected with a walking path. They’ve worked for awhile on recreating the path. Now you can follow the walk between the houses yourself.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast,  look at her photos, and find her on  Facebook ,  Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,  and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

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Musical Now Has License Rights Available for Purchase

Little House on the Prairie the Musical T-Shirt
Little House on the Prairie the Musical T-Shirt

It All Began at the Guthrie

In 2007 the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota announced they would be debuting a new musical based on the “Little House” books. Although they said their source material was the books, not the NBC series, they definitely connected with the series through the casting of Melissa Gilbert as Ma and through their characterization of Nellie which matches the TV Nellie more than the books.

A Big Success

The show proved a big success with the original booking being extended by weeks for an audience ranging from normal theater people to Laura fans making the trip (buses went from the homesite towns, which is how I went). After it closed at the Guthrie in Fall 2008 it was announced the production would go on a national (actually international – they had one booking in Canada) tour. In a national tour a production travels from city to city as theaters book it with the same cast, etc. traveling with the show. Gilbert remained in the Ma role for this further production as did some of the other actors, others in the cast were replaced either due to scheduling difficulties or because they weren’t willing to travel that long for the show. I was particularly saddened by the loss of Carrie who was very good in the Guthrie production.

(Inter)National Tour

Announcements of bookings dribbled out during 2009 and then in October 2009 they were off! The play had been slightly retooled – which is normal – and traveled all around the country. When they played Sioux Falls (where I saw it), the cast even made a group trip up to DeSmet to see where some of the story really took place. The roadshow closed in early summer 2010. A couple of months later the gift shop that traveled with the show sold out excess branded merchandise. The official website slipped into an archived state without access to what had previously been posted.

Find out my details of this and a link to the archived version of the website on my history of the musical post.

What Happens Next?

Well, the hope of every such musical is to make it to Broadway and maybe even on to London. It’s sometimes a broken road there. Usually after a national tour one of three things happens:

  1. It goes straight to Broadway to try its luck there!
  2. It gets polished and retooled and tries another tour.
  3. Rights are offered for purchase for local productions.

So the show ended and what happened was…. nothing! At least in public. I assume there was at least some hope that it was going to have a chance at Broadway… or at least another shot at a tour. They don’t release rights for local productions until all hope for a big show is gone – at least for the immediate future.

Through 2013 the site remained operating in its archived state, then as a background screen, but preserving ownership through the first part of 2016 and I assume some hope remained. However, someone behind the scenes has now officially given up. The URL of the show is now an ad for a Japanese (in Japanese) diet supplement.

The Little House on the Prairie the Musical is now available for licensing!

 

The Good News

The positive part of this is that starting in Fall 2019 local groups will be able to put on productions of the show. Hopefully it will become popular and you’ll get to see a local production near you!

If you’re looking for buying, rights, scripts, etc. here you goThat’s what you’re going to want to pass on to your local theater groups, high schools, etc. and ask them to put on the show! They also have a digital preview version of the script.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on Facebook , Twitter , Google+LinkedIn , SlideShare, and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Wilder Program at Hoover

Revisiting Laura Ingalls Wilder: What a Doll!

Sarah's Notebook

Sarah as old Laura wearing velvet dress Sarah as Doll Laura at Pepin, Wisconsisn

UPDATED August 9 2019: Once again this year, I’ll be presenting at the Hoover Presidential Library and Museum for their Labor Day weekend show. This year (2019) I’m doing a special version of A Long Way Home, but looking back this, Laura Ingalls Wilder: What a Doll! was a pretty great one. You can still have me come and do it.

Wilder Program at Hoover: What a Doll!

This year’s program will connect with the special temporary exhibit now on display at Hoover, “Children in the White House: Caroline Kennedy’s Dolls.”

Dolls played a small part in Wilder’s books, but play an important roll in the fandom that has grown up around them. The program will cover both Wilder’s life and both the art dolls and commercially produced dolls. Among the dolls pictured will be a collection of Charlotte Replicas from 1966…

View original post 269 more words

Video Playlist Page Added

Screen Grab from my Video Playlists page

I’ve been doing a little tinkering with the blog, hopefully I’m going to be able to combine the website and the blog in the near future and I’m reorganizing updating and removing things leading up to that. One thing I’m trying to do is slim down the left hand options on the page which do tend to go on a long ways. With that in mind I’ve just taken down the two pages I had for video lists specifically for Laurapalloza trip videos.

I replaced the two previous pages with one page which not only links to posts with that same LauraPalloza information, but now lists links to all my other videos as well. I hope it will help you find more things to interest you. Most of the videos are pulled from my YouTube page which I’ve recently reawakened with new contact, but there are a couple links from my Vimeo channel as well. Take a look and go exploring among the Trundlebed Tales Videos.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on  Facebook ,  Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,  SlideShare, and  Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

August 2019 Presentations

Presenting Wading in Plum Creek
Me Presenting about Wading in Plum Creek

We’re a little late this month and past the first presentation. We were delayed getting last Saturday’s event finalized. However, they asked me to pencil a hold for next year’s Bison Days so watch for that again next year. Even though it’s past I added Bison Days. The Newell program is rescheduled from last month.

  • Bison Days – Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge – Prairie Preserve outside Prairie City, Iowa – In the Kitchen With Laura – August 3, 2019 – 11:00am
  • RESCHEDULED – Newell Public Library – Newell, Iowa – A Long Way Home (General Laura Program) – August 19, 2019 – 6:30pm
  •  Center Point Historical Society – Center Point, Iowa – Packing Up– August 18, 2019 – 2pm

Even though it’s actually in September since it’s September 1st, let me also add my program at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum.

  • Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum – – West Branch, Iowa  A Long Way Home Annotated (General Laura Program) – September 1, 2019 – 2pm

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on  Facebook ,  Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,  SlideShare, and  Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Train at Henry Ford

I love trains. I love The Henry Ford/Greenfield Village. So in short I LOVE this video. I can even tie in a Walt Disney connection because when Walt was first really getting into trains and starting to think about creating Disneyland one of the places he visited was Greenfield Village. If you go there, I think you can see where he got some of his ideas.

This less than 4 minute video is from The Henry Ford‘s video series, Innovation Nation. It looks at the history of Cabooses. Do you know exactly what a Caboose does?

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on  Facebook ,  Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,  SlideShare, and  Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

August 2019 Laura Ingalls Wilder Events

My beautiful picture

It’s August and it’s the last harrah of summer with a few more events at the homesites.

De Smet SD

  • The Ingalls Homestead is hosting a Plein Air Event (painting in the open air) in conjunction with the Harvey Dunn Society. Find more details about a previous event. –  August 9, 10, 11, 2019

Spring Valley MN

  • AG Days Town Celebration – August 15-18

Mansfield MO

  • August 2, 2019 7:00pm – Sunset Serenade with Pa’s Fiddle

Malone/Burke NY

  • Annual Cultural Festival– Fete du Quebecois – August 24, 2019

Celebrating the French Canadian heritage of the area in the mid 19th century with traditional food, music, demonstrations, craft vendors, and more!

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast,   look at her photos, and find her on  Facebook ,  Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,  and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.