FAQs for the 2021 Season

FAQs for the 2021 Season

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the virtual Town Hall event on Sunday, March 28th. You asked some great questions. We can’t wait to see you again! Below you will find some frequently asked questions about the upcoming season.

If you have a question that isn’t answered below, please email it to eileenm@grsf.org.

What happens to my tickets from last year? If you donated your tickets or passes back to the Festival, thank you! Your donation helped get us here. You can purchase new tickets or passes as soon as they go on sale later this month. If you held onto your tickets from last year, they will be transferred to the closest available “pod” and date, and you will be emailed an updated ticket confirmation. If the new date and seat don’t work for you, just let us know and we can find something that works better for you. Prices will be a bit different, so you will either be asked to pay the difference or you will receive a credit on your account that you can use towards more tickets, or save for the 2022 season when we are back in the regular theater.

Are there chairs? No. The “pods” will be about 7′ in diameter – enough to accommodate 2 adults in chairs. We highly recommend you bring your own chairs with you. We will begin letting people into their “pods” much earlier than we would normally let into the theater – about 90 minutes before the show – so you will have time to get settled and even have a picnic! For those who might want to sit on a blanket, we still strongly recommend bringing your own chair, as we can’t guarantee the people sitting in front of you will also want to sit at ground level. This way, no one’s view is blocked.

How many people can I fit in my “pod”? You can have 2 adults in a pod. So, if you are attending with a partner or friend, purchase the pod you desire and then you and your friend can split the cost up however you see fit. Due to the restrictions of the MN Department of Health, Actors’ Equity, and other health and safety guidelines during the pandemic, we cannot allow more than 2 people in a pod. If you have 3 people in your party, you can purchase 2 pods next to one another. Even more incentive to bring another friend! Please inquire with the Box Office if you have small children (under 10) in your party

What do the pods look like? The “pod” is simply a term for a pre-determined space on the grass where you (or you and a companion) can set up your chairs. Each pod will be a circle spray-painted on the ground with a letter/number indicating which pod it is (like a seat number). There will be no structure surrounding your pod.

How much will tickets cost? Pods closest to the stage will start at $70/each. There will be about 4 different sections, going from $70/pod down to $20/pod. Due to this configuration, we will not be able to offer student prices this year.

What about the $12 days? Because we have had to shorten our season drastically due to the rental of an outdoor space and audience size limitations, GRSF will not be offering any $12 days this season. However, we will have Pay-What-You-WILL (PWYW) seating available at every performance, so you can show up day-of and see what is available. You can choose your price, or bring a non-perishable food item for donation to our local Food Shelf.

Where will I sit? Our typical seating (individual chairs in the theater) will be replaced by “pods” for the summer. Each pod will be 7′ in diameter and at least 3′ away from any adjacent pods. We highly recommend you bring your own chairs – that way you can ensure they are to your liking. Feel free to bring snacks, beverages, blankets, etc. GRSF will have a very limited number of chairs available for patrons who might show up and have forgotten chairs, but we cannot guarantee they will be available. For patrons with mobility limitations or who need accessible seating, there will be accessible pods held back. You can call the box office at 507.474.7900 to reserve those.

Is there shade? There is some shade – there are several trees. They are noted on the seat map if you would like to reserve a pod near a tree. However, our productions will start at 6:30 in the evening so the sun should not be directly overhead. Please consider wearing sunscreen and/or a hat. We ask that you do not bring an umbrella, as that may impede the view of those around you.

What if it rains? Our stage managers will have an open line of communication with the Winona County Emergency Management team, in the event of any dangerous weather (tornadoes or lightening), and will have emergency evacuation plans in place, which will be shared with our usher and front of house staff. However, most outdoor theaters continue performances during light rains. If there is rain in the forecast we recommend you bring a poncho! If the rain is heavy, we may terminate the performance. If a performance is called off prior to intermission, you will be able to choose another date as a “rain date” to see the performance OR be issued a refund. If the performance is called off after intermission, no refunds or exchanges will be issued. This is standard practice at outdoor theaters across the country.

What if I’m buying a ticket just for myself, or for an odd number of people? You will need to purchase entire pods to accommodate 1-2 people per “pod”. If you are planning to attend by yourself, you will need to reserve an entire pod. If you have 3 people in your party, you will need 2 pods, if you have 5 people, you will need 3 pods, etc. Due to health and safety restrictions we will not make any exceptions to this policy. Please inquire with the Box Office if you have small children (under 10) in your party.

Will I have to wear a mask? No! You do not need to wear a mask while seated outdoors. We do ask that if you go into the Winona State University Performing Arts Center building during performances of Every Brilliant Thing that you wear a mask while indoors.

What about bugs? GRSF does not own any of the land we will be using for these performances, and therefore we do not have control over any pesticide applications. We recommend you bring bug spray or other insect repellent.

How will seating work for Every Brilliant Thing, which is being performed on the “Green” at Winona State University? Seating will be the same as for Levee Park. The pods will be the same size (roughly 7×7 with 3 feet between pods) and will hold two people. There will be between 40 and 50 pods and they will be “general admission.” This means that you can make a reservation for the show, but you won’t be assigned a particular pod. You will select your pod upon your arrival for the performance. This is the same way that seating works in the Black Box Theater when we have held performances there.

How will pre-show conversations work? Pre-show conversations will happen live between the Apprentice 20-minute show and the start of The Tempest or Great Expectations. For Every Brilliant Thing performances, pre-show conversations will happen about 10 minutes before the start of the show. These will also be recorded so that people can watch them in advance of the performance.

What about the intern/apprentice production?  There will be 5 different 20-minute sections of Romeo & Juliet performed by the apprentice company. Their performances will begin at 6 p.m. (or 11 a.m. for the occasional matinee) in Levee Park. Each performance will start with a quick narrative to set the scene. On Saturday, July 31 at 11 a.m. audiences will be able to see all 5 sections performed together (location TBD).

Where will I park? There are two free public parking lots near the performance space at the Levee. For performances of Every Brilliant Thing, which will take place on the campus of Winona State University, the Gold Lots are free and available to GRSF attendees throughout the summer.

Will there be bathrooms? There will be hygienic bathroom trailers with several stalls and handwashing facilities near the performance space at the Levee (no port-o-potties!) and restrooms available in the WSU Performing Arts Center for performances of Every Brilliant Thing.

Can I bring food? Yes! We encourage you to arrive early and picnic while you enjoy the pre-show conversation. Alcoholic beverages are NOT allowed on the campus of Winona State University, but are allowed in the pods at the Levee. You MUST keep any alcoholic beverage in your pod only and cannot walk around with an open container.