• Dean Simon

The Summer Without

There is no way to describe or understand the emotions, the fear, the hardships, and the upheaval that this virus is causing in all our lives. We can't be with the ones we love, even if, perhaps especially if, they are in grave danger from this horrible pathogen. We are a social society and when we as a people cannot get together it hurts us. Day after day our favorite gatherings are being cancelled and now, the decision was made at last night's online festival meeting, that this year's Shawano Folk Festival, in its traditional form, will be cancelled as well. It pains us to say so, but the reality is that we will probably not be out of the woods by August. So, the committee made the decision to cancel.

But there is a bright side. We have music!

This may be the year without baseball, the year without rock concerts, the year without our folk heroes under the trees but it does not mean that it must be the year without music! The one thing that gets us through, gets our feet tapping, lifts our spirits, and makes our days brighter has always been music. Maybe this summer is the year you finally perfect the 12-bar blues. Maybe you buy a harmonica and watch a YouTube video to learn to play (there's a YouTube video for everything). But don't lose music. Keep listening, keep playing, and learn some online technology so that you can keep sharing. If and when social gatherings can happen again, support the musicians that are hurting in this time like the rest of us.

The committee is brainstorming and will be contacting all the artists that we had booked and will try to cobble together some semblance of a concert to fill the August void. It won't be the same and it may be online but the music will play on. Stay tuned and keep singing!

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