Applause: show support at the festival 2011.06.22

Written by David Green.

Let’s be clear from the start: This is nothing but an appeal for your help. We’re on our knees, begging you, please.

The topic is the entertainment stage at Wakefield Park this weekend during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. Entertainment chair Kent Deatrick has lined up nearly non-stop musical groups and individuals every night of the festival, beginning Thursday. There’s never been this much entertainment at a Morenci festival.

Thinking back to some previous performances, there’s never been anything more embarrassing at the festival than the absence of an audience willing to listen. Soloists, duos and groups have bravely stepped onto the stage to show off their talents—sometimes raw, sometimes well developed—but many times few people have been present to listen.

The entertainers are doing their part; now do yours and give the singers someone to perform in front of. It must be rather disheartening to gaze out from the stage onto nearly empty bleachers.

Starting Thursday at 5 p.m., there’s a lineup of faces you should know or get to know—Jeff Elarton from Morenci, Terrance Reeves from Wauseon, Second Wind Band with several local members, the Randall Sisters from Fayette and now from Morenci, Mouth Sown Shut with Morenci members, Titus County Band from Lenawee County, Cody “HiZe” Long from Morenci. Local groups are among those competing in the Battle of the Bands, also.

Not every band is going to present a flavor of music that’s part of your listening routine, but show some support this weekend. Those on the stage will appreciate your presence.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
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  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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