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by Inlander Staff & r & & r & Not SO Mellow Drama & r & The Sixth Street Melodrama in Wallace, Idaho, just presents stereotyped silliness (the mustachioed villain, the sheriff all in white), but it's notable for its level of audience interaction. On a recent weekend, playgoers went way beyond booing and hissing. They shouted advice, hurled abuse, joined in the bad wordplay, pointed out stupidities -- with the actors improvising fast with the give-and-take. Just as it was a century ago, the audience became part of the show. You won't get that at the multiplex.

A Novelist's Dream & r & Kudos to Gregory Spatz, who teaches at EWU's Inland Northwest Center for Writers downtown; his new novel, Fiddler's Dream, got reviewed on National Public Radio last week. Spatz's tale of bluegrass and road trips won high praise from Alan Cheuse, who said Spatz's ability as a writer and a musician "just clicks," adding that like a good impromptu bluegrass session, the book "jams right along."

Hang In There! & r & Two local teens are getting a finger-hold on the nation's sheer face of climbing competitions. Melissa Main, a junior at Lewis and Clark, and Bryan Brenize, a recent grad from Gonzaga Prep, have both won spots on the U.S. National Climbing Team. They fought for the chance starting in March; then, in early July, they emerged from a field of more than 400 young climbers to make the final cut. They'll be in Imst, Austria, Aug. 24-27 to compete in the World Youth Climbing Championships, where 40 countries will be represented. To help out with their trip, call 238-2590.

A New King & r & The Coeur d'Alene Summer Theater has a hit on its hands with The King and I. The Rodgers and Hammerstein favorite has been so popular, in fact, the Carousel Players are adding another performance, on Saturday, Aug. 19, at 2 pm. The show plays this weekend through Sunday, and then next week, from Aug. 17-19. Pick up next week's Inlander for Michael Bowen's review.

Summer of Paint & r & The Garland District is receiving a makeover, with four walls at the corner of Post and Garland getting new murals. The scenes are being painted by local teens, who have been spending the past eight months gathering history about the district to use in their murals. Local artists Dick Schindler, Tom O'Day, Judy Patterson and Toni Plastino helped the kids brighten up the neighborhood. The grand unveiling of the murals will be Saturday as part of the Garland Festival, which runs from 10 am-8 pm on Aug. 12, and also features music, art booths, kids activities and a Native American market organized by George Flett.

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