The Church Basement Ladies Are Back! YSB

The premier of the 7th musical in the Church Basement Ladies series, You Smell Barn, will be held August 23 and run through August 26 at the Reif Center in Grand Rapids, Minnesota.(  Following the opening weekend, the musical will start its five-month run at the Ames Center Black Box Theater in Burnsville, Minnesota. (

New Musical. New Comedy. New Location.

From the basement to the barn, your beloved Church Basement Ladies are back and getting busy with life outside the kitchen. After the last hotdish is served, the coffee pot is drained, and the JELL-O molds are put away, these steadfast women head to their farmsteads, peel off their good girdles, and get on with their daily chores. In between picking eggs and dusting knickknacks, the Ladies congregate with some of the other characters who inhabit their community.

You Smell Barn celebrates rural life in the 1950’s with plenty of crazy antics, loads of fresh laughs, and spanking new original songs!



Growing Up Rural: You Smell Barn

by Janet Letnes Martin and Suzann Nelson

You Smell Barn is an expression that isn’t heard much anymore, but in the ‘50s and ‘60s it was a frequent greeting on the school bus, in schools, and in churches.

This book will take you back to the time when everyone played or went to ballgames on Friday nights and went to town on Saturday nights, usually for the drawings.

Everybody visited on Sunday afternoon and then drove around to look at the fields. Everybody took care of ringworm and rashes with Carbo-Salve, and Mercurochrome cured about everything. When there was something going around—from chicken pox to interesting rumors—one glance at the Viking Township News, written by Tillie Torkelson, would verify it.

“Growing Up Rural” is a companion to the award-winning book, “Growing Up Lutheran”, that was the inspiration for all six Church Basement Ladies musicals.   

Rural by luck, Norwegian by birth, Lutheran, by golly…

To order, click here CA17-01     $16.95


Gift Certificates Available

Consider a gift certificate from Rural Route Bookstore. Make sure to include the dollar amount on the Order Form.