Things to Do in Fort Wayne and Beyond

Arts United announces award nominees

Youtheatre classes open; dog adoption at Studi07; Hyde seeks local writers for series

Jen Poiry Prough

Whatzup Features Writer

Published February 1, 2023

Arts United released its list of 18 nominees for awards that celebrate northeast Indiana people, organizations, and businesses that have contributed to the region’s arts and culture scene.

The nominees include Adrian Mann, Alix Watson, Amy Ford, Delois McKinley-Eldridge, Derek Reeves, FAME, Fran Page, Janice Furtner, Lakesha Green, Madelane Elston, Michael Johnson, Niyoki Chapman, Sigma Apha Iota, Songs for a New World, SpongeBob: The Musical, Trevor Campbell, Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts, and Yaro Carpenter.

Criteria for the awards was that the organizations or people included IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access); Innovation, Creativity and/or Artistry; Leadership; and Arts Education and Community Engagement.

Arts United will feature the nominees and their accomplishments via their social media, and a celebration will be held March 1 for nominees.

Gene Marcus Piano finals this weekend

The annual Gene Marcus Piano Competition celebrates its 12th year and regularly attracts top pianists age 18 and under from Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio. 

Pianists within 100 miles of Fort Wayne compete in four age divisions for cash prizes and Gene Marcus Piano Camp scholarships. 

The winners recital will be Sunday, Feb. 5, at 6:30 p.m. at Rhinehart Recital Hall at Purdue University-Fort Wayne. Admission is free.

Register now for Youtheatre classes

Fort Wayne Youtheatre is taking applications for the spring semester of classes. 

Most classes begin Feb. 25 and run every Saturday through May 6 at Arts United Center. Among the classes offered are Let’s Show Off for ages 3-5; Creative Drama for grades 2 and 3; Beginning Drama for grades 4 and 5; Tech Theatre: Stage & Character Makeup for grades 6-12; Pre-Creative Drama for grades K-1; Voice for the Stage (Disney’s Encanto) for grades 2-5; Junior Drama for grades 6-8; Musical Theatre Dance for grades 2-5; Senior Drama for grades 9-12; Pre-Musical Theatre for grades 6-8; Specialty for grades 5-12; Playwriting (via Zoom) for grades 4-12; Tech Theatre (Stage Management & Props) for grades 6-12; and Private Acting Classes for those 6 years old and older.

To register, go to

Princesses visit DeBrand Chocolates

Your Party Princess will host a free meet and greet with Anna, Elsa, and Princess Tiana on Sunday, Feb. 5, from noon-2 p.m. at DeBrand Fine Chocolates, 10105 Auburn Park Drive. 

Visitors are invited to come dressed up and bring a camera and something special for the princesses to sign. 

Wags & Wiggles holds dog adoption at Studi07

On Saturday, Feb. 4, from 12:30-2:30 p.m., Wags & Wiggles Rescue will hold a dog adoption at Studi07, 3414 Fairfield Ave.

The nonprofit rescues dogs left homeless for whatever reason: dogs in public shelters where they are at high risk of euthanasia due to pet overpopulation, dogs given up by their owners because of difficult circumstances, and those in danger of abuse or neglect.

42nd annual Boat Show returns to Coliseum

Memorial Coliseum will host the 2023 Fort Wayne Boat Show and Sale, a tradition since 1981, this month. 

The show is one of the largest collections for boat and water sport enthusiasts in the region and features more than 52 exhibitors, including marine dealers from all over Indiana and Michigan. 

The show runs from 3-8 p.m. on Thursday-Friday, Feb. 9-10, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12. 

Tickets are $10 for those older than 12, but there are discount options for the show at

Hyde Brothers seeks local writers

Hyde Brothers, Booksellers are looking for local writers to feature as readers at their monthly Last Thursday literary series. 

Requirements are authors must be regional to Fort Wayne and read 15-20 minutes of original poetry, prose, creative nonfiction, etc. They are not required to have been published. 

For more info, email with a small sample of your writing and a five- or six-sentence biography.

News and Venues covers Northeast Indiana’s music and arts organizations, venues, and colleges, from large to small. Send your news items to

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