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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
johnross NW Folklife/Seattle (93* d) RE: NW Folklife/Seattle 27 May 08


In more general terms, the Folklife Festival was what it has become in the last few years -- a huge gthering of the tribes, with too much interesting music, dance and other events for any one person to see and hear, tremendous crowds and overwhelming sensory inputs. It's too loud, there are too many people, and I'm getting too old for this kind of thing. And it's the best weekend of the year.

The big public news was that some idiot brought his pistol to the Festival (why???) and it went off. It's not clear if it was intentional or not, but inevitably, in a crowd of that size, two or maybe three people were injured (not life-threatening). The guy with the gun was tackled by bystanders who held him until the cops got to him within a couple of minutes. Most people on the grounds had no idea that this was happening. But of course, the newspapers and TV have been reporting it with varying levels of sensational play.

We did a concert for Utah Phillips on Firday evening to celebrate his work and sing some of his songs and others that are consistent with his work and his messages, with a bunch of his friends (including Mike Marker and Larry Hanks, Jim Page, Linda Allen and her daughters, and Utah's son Brendan with his band, Fast Rattler among others). We finished at about 9:30, about two hours before Utah died in California. I'd like to think the love and good wishes that came out of that concert somehow reached him in his final hours.

And as always, those of us within the organization have ideas about changes and improvements for the future.

I have no information yet about the financial picture. I try to stay as far away from that side of things as possible. But considering the great weather and huge crowds (especially Saturday), I'm guessing that we did okay in donations, sales of t-shirts and souvenirs, commissions and so forth.

If anybody reading this wants to offer comments, complaints or other observations, I will be happy to relay them to the people who actually run things. Please send them to johnross@well.com.

Disclaimer: I am not speaking here or elsewhere as a representative of Northwest Folklife. All opinions are my own, etc etc.


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