Saturday, September 26, 2009

Walnut Valley Festival - Winfield KS 9-8-20-09

Well I finally made it to Winfield KS for Walnut Valley Music Festival. Mike and I went down on Tues, Sept 8 to get in line for land rush on Thursday. Driving down it rained most of the way.... said a little prayer and sure enough as we drove into Winfield the clouds parted and it was dry for us to get settled it. Did a temporary thing - and we slept in back of truck. On Wed. they announced that the land rush was going to be delayed till Sat ( heavy rains up river and the Walnut River was going to crest on Friday.) Mike had to go home cause he had to work Fri. and on the weekend. Left me to fend for myself. Met some new people - Jan a banjo player from Colorado parked right behind me in her R-pod. A cool little camper. Kind of bored not being able to set up so on Friday I went on a drive about - ended up going to OK - Ponca City and Kaw Lake. FOund some deals at a garage sale - really excited to find an awesome steamer trunk that is in great shape - just needs a little "gypsifing" if ya know what I mean!
Didn't sleep worth crap on Friday night - could hear the guy in the next tent snoring away! Got up about 5 ish - loaded up to be ready for land rush. I was number 269 for the West Campground. They sounded the horn and then I waited... about an hour before I moved!! It was exciting and I was so nervous that I wouldn't find a great spot - or get her backed in.... Driving in to the campground was a madhouse - big rigs everywhere and folks scrambling for their space - many were saving spots and I had a little panic attach.... rounded the second drive and found a clearing on the corner. Some nice folks said - pull her in! Ended up being great neighbors - Troy, Joy, Theresa (locals with experience) Larry was also my neighbor and helped me set up my improvised awning system. Found the awning in a dumpster and MIke and I set up some PVC pipes to help form a shelter in the back to house my kitchen stuff. I also put up a two other shelters - so I had a parlor and a screened in dining room. It was great. Took me about three days to finish setting up and decorating the Emma Rose. Course I added more lights and she looked real purty at night!!

Kind of hard to capture the whole thing. My camera does funky things with lights but you get an idea. Can't tell you how many people toured her... but I did start a visitors log and got lot's of comments. I plan to send out some updates to those who added their email.

Wed night was the "Songs you can't sing to Momma" pretty raunchy and amusing. Paula has to help us create a gypsy song for next year. Just drifted off to sleep around 1 am and awake tp hear this loud music - at first I thought the contest was still going on, but I sat up and realized it was "GYPSY MUSIC!!" I jumped out of bed to find three troubadours - a mandolin, fiddle and bass playing some great music. Well I had to grab my tambourine ( and a scarf to cover the girls) and dance a little. Wish I had it on video tape. They were suppose to come back, but only the fiddler showed up on Sat. I do have a brief recording on one song. I'll try to figure out how to post it!
Paula and Richard arrived on Thursday morning and we went to hear the autoharp contest, then met folks at Karen and Chuck Daniels - Autoharp Junction which was just a few campsites away. They also had several days of workshops for free!
Mike got to come back down on Thursday and I surprised him with an early Christmas present - the MARIMBULA...which is a fabulous instrument also known as bass for dummies. We were so busy we didn't take any pics - will do that later.
Enjoyed evening concerts - especially John McCutcheon and he went to a beginner Jam on Friday - with Martha - "plays well with others" and folks from
He's really picking it up quick - it's a great sound and will be a great addition - maybe he can help me keep time!

Got a real thrill on Sat. with a phone call to meet some officials at the campsite. Can't believe I got first place for BEST CAMPGROUND. What a thrill! The prize was this fabulous pottery urn and two mugs, belt buckle and poster - how cool is that. Toasted that night with a little special brew

More stories to tell..... so many interesting people I met, great music and fun times. Gonna go next year - bigger and better. Might even be a vendor and sell my fairies and stuff to pay for my habits!