A quarter-century ago, Bob McFadden bet that the Twin Cities was ready for a Fringe festival like the one he’d seen in Winnipeg. “It gave virtual unknowns a chance to be seen, and it gave people who hadn’t seen a lot of theater a chance to see a great deal,” he told the Star Tribune as he launched the Minnesota Fringe Festival with similar goals. That democratic ethos, accentuated by the fact that the festival is non-juried, has fueled the growth of the Minnesota Fringe into one of the country’s largest. For its 25th year, though, the festival is scaling back geographically: There won’t be any performances in Uptown, with venues focused on hubs in the West Bank and northeast Minneapolis. The festival is also welcoming more out-of-town artists and launching a Family Fringe, “a concurrent juried festival championing multigenerational performances” at the Celtic Junction Arts Center. Despite the changes, the adventure of Fringing should remain fundamentally the same. You never know quite what you’re going to get—and that’s a good thing. See p. 9 for more on the fest. Plan your Fringe by checking out the schedule at www.fringefestival.org.