LeMars, Iowa….”Well, we’re still working on the
finalizing of this year’s festival” says Bob Everhart, the director of
the largest old-time music festival in the upper Midwest.  “I was
fearful we were going to lose money this year, but as it turned out,
after we made all of our deposits, we’re about the same as we were last
year, so we aren’t going to worry about it.  This event we do, one of
the last in America that accepts all of the early musical genres under
the umbrella of ‘country music’ meaning rural music, should be eligible
for just about every sponsor and grant available to a 501(c)3 non profit
corporation, but I sure have a dickens of a time trying to get help
from those very people that are supposed to be there to help such
organizations as ours.  We are, without a doubt, the only organization
in the State of Iowa who has been doing this ‘save the music’ project
for 37 years.  We should surely qualify for some outside sponsorship or
grant assistance, but it’s sure has eluded us.  We had three inches of
rain in Anita while we were at the festival, and now we have a huge leak
in the Museum again, and nowhere to turn to get help fixing that.”
     “Bob gets all excited when things don’t always go his
way,” Sheila remarked.  “I can get up on the roof of the museum and
spread a little tar around, that should stop the leak for awhile
anyway.  He’s always so fearful about the displays and the huge quantity
of musical instruments and collectives he has in there.  Peter Tenworth
from Nova Scotia visited the Museum on Tuesday on his way back home,
and presented Bob with an incredibly rare 78rpm recording of Hank
Williams, Sr.  This is one of Hanks very first recordings, made for the
Sterling Record Company, and they are very very rare, so Bob worries a
lot about these sort of things.  I know we need to get some help, he
just had a guy fix it last year, and it’s worse now than it was before
that guy took all the metal off and put tarpaper on.  So it goes.”
     “We sure had a nice time at the festival,” Bob was
quick to add, “it just seemed to slip by so rapidly.  Michael Martin
Murphey was just elegant he was so good.  He asked if he could be with
us again next year, and we said ‘sure’ right away.  Same with Ted
Vigil.  Sheila and I were watching one of those Time-Life recording
compilations last night on television, and sure enough there’s John
Denver in all his glory.  Ted Vigil looks and sounds so much like John
Denver it’s almost scary.  We sure enjoyed him, and he promises to be
back again too.  We also had the Maloys visit us from Oklahoma at the
Museum this week too.  They are such talented performers, it was good to
have them back at the festival.  Maybe they will help fix the roof?”
     “Dad finally broke down and got us a good budget
lunch,” Bobbie Lhea chimed in.  “He took us to Famous Daves Bar-B-Que in
Council Bluffs.  Now you are thinking that might not make a budget
lunch, but if you go in before 5:30pm, and check out the back side of
the menu, you can really get a nice lunch for about $7 each.  Dad limits
the soft drinks anyway, so I was just fine with my so tender
it-melted-in-my-mouth brisket.  I love their many different kinds of hot
bar-b-que sauces too, so I tried all of them.  Devils spit is my
     “We’re getting ready for a super-terrific show come
September 21,” Sheila added.  “Pat Boilesen, Nebraska’s Daughter, will
be with us, excellent country music, western music, and some great
originals like “Prairie Fire” which she got to perform for Lynn Anderson
at the festival.  Also on the bill is that magnificent 13-year old
ragtime piano player Calvin Duhashek.  Hopefully Emma the 12-year old
super singer too, and maybe even Jerimie Faya to add a little John
Denever atmosphere to the whole show.  Sure should be a good one.”

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