Friday, August 27, 2010

Who's On Third??

Are you looking for something special to do on Labor Day Weekend? Come to downtown McMinnville for a taste of Oregon’s Favorite Main Street at “Who’s on Third?” Enjoy the last weekend of summer tasting local wines, exploring a variety of shops, and dining at one of the many superb restaurants downtown.

Choose from a a delightful variety of international cuisines including French, Italian, Spanish Tapas, and Japanese. There are several Wine tasting rooms scattered throughout town, so if you've wanted to sample wines from our great local vineyards, this is an excellent opportunity. & it's an easy stroll to the Saturday Market, located in the Granary District between 5th & 8th Streets.

In addition to food and drink, downtown merchants will be offering special Who’s on Third? sales and promotions. A stroll along Oregon’s Favorite Main Street on Saturday, September 4 or Sunday, September 5 will also feature local musicians and performers.

Ah - musicians & performers you ask?? YES indeed, Rowan & I will be out 'harping on Third Street' on Saturday, from 12-2! So if you're out & about, please stop by! & if you have a song you'd like to hear, I'm happy to have requests :)

Last year 'Who's On Third?' was held in July, in place of Turkey Rama; I'm happy that we have another summer festival. Who's On Third? is scheduled to coincide with the Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon. Come on out & enjoy the festivities!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Turkey Rama 2010

The second weekend in July, McMinnville's oldest & largest community festival - Turkey Rama will celebrate it's 50th anniversary.

The McMinnville Downtown Association (DTA) & Chamber of Commerce are partnering to produce this year's event. The festival features arts and crafts, downtown merchants & other vendors, local community and non-profit groups, area businesses, music, a variety of entertainment for the whole family, & and an array of festival food.

With booths along the center of Third Street, the focus has shifted to promoting local businesses, artists & musicians. For the second year, I've been invited to play my harp in one of the Kiosks lining Third Street, & will perform Friday, July 9 from 11 AM - 1 PM The DTA Booth will have information on my location. On Saturday the 10th, our local Square Dance Club, Braids & Braves, will grace the Main Stage & do a demo from 11 - 12. (I'll be playing harp for a private wedding Sat, so will miss dancing with my friends.)

I hope you have a chance to come out & stroll the street, listen to some music, & enjoy this year's festival.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer Solstice Wedding

Today we participated in a LOVELY Summer Solstice wedding - quite a contrast to the 'harp in barn' wedding a couple of months back! The sun blessed us by staying out for the whole afternoon, & family & friends had come from all over to witness the blessed day.

The setting was a lovely 'park like' back yard of a local home, the Grandmother's place! The bride & groom are actors in New York, & they chose varied elements from their upbringing & heritage.

The wedding dress was 'vintage,' having been worn by the bride's mother, aunt (officiating) & other gals in the family. The blessings ranged from traditional Catholic prayers, to Celtic & Cherokee (they choose me for the musician after reading that I have the same heritage on my website!)

The soloist will join the Metropolitan Opera company in the fall - what a gorgeous soprano voice!! We met Sunday afternoon to go over a SIMPLE accompaniment to her pieces (Mozart & Mahler) & a trio singing the 'wedding blessing of Juno' from the Tempest. Friends, family members & the bride & groom did readings, including a spectacular performance from Whitman's Leaves of Grass (by a fellow actor) & a piece from the 'love story' play where Melanie & David first met, by a young actor friend.

At the end of the service, they 'jumped the broom' to honor older handfasting traditions, & rode off in a carriage drawn by a handsome horse!

I LOVE the opportunities I have to participate in such unique services!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

McMinnville Farmer's Market

This Thursday I'll be playing at one of my favorite summer events, the open air McMinnville Farmer's Market!
The Downtown Association coordinates booking vendors & musicians, & does a fine mob of making this a fun, well organized weekly event for 20 weeks. The Market opened a few weeks ago, & I've stopped by to pick up pepper plants from 'Simon,' a HS boy who grows a great variety of peppers for the home garden, & stop by my friend Kate's Herb booth.

McMinnville's market is well known throughout the valley, with vendors coming from the immediate area & from out of County. Produce fresh from the farms, jewelry, soap, honey, herb plants, meat, cheese & eggs from naturally farmed animals, fresh flowers, & representatives from the Native Plant Society & Garden Club . . . the list of this year's vendors is posted on the DTA site.

One of the features is weekly music, & I've played harp at the Farmer's Market since 2003, always a fun event! This year I'll be at the
Farmers' Market: Thur, June 10from 1:30-6 PM. Link
This year, there's a seperate weekend market in the 'Granery District,' between 5th & 8th Streets. This market began in the fall, & is open year round, with a slightly different complement of vendors. Both markets are a great way to see your friends, buy some fresh produce, locally made jewelry, soap, & eat some great food.

Come on by!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Wedding in a Barn!

One of the fun things about playing harp for weddings is the variety of settings we're invited into. I've played under an apple tree with two cellists, all of us in apple green dresses & barefoot; in wineries, in a rose garden, near Cozine Creek in a city park, close to the Metolious River (with the groom & his guys rowing downstream to the site) & today in the loft of a barn!

It's an OLD barn, so the loft wasn't that high, the ladder (for me) was roped to the beam (a log!) The pastor was TALL, so he easily handed the harp up over the edge of the loft, & we didn't have to try to get it up the ladder!! It's the first time I've worn Blue Jeans when I was playing for a wedding!

A few days ago, when the bride said she & her groom could carry the harp up the ladder, I began to get nervous . . . they thought they'd have a lift earlier, & were going to take the harp up on that - so I considered staying on the ground, lol!! But when I saw the loft, I felt a lot more comfortable. (& of course, the bride & groom were nowhere to be seen when I arrived!)

My dear friend Reita, attended, so we sat together for the reception. It's rather odd when I don't know anyone but the bride & groom (who are rather busy!) I often don't know anyone else at the reception, so it's a toss up whether to stay!

Reita is such a dear - we're in a book group together, & so enjoy each other. She reminds me a bit of my mom in her earlier years, & it's always fun to have a chance to visit. It was cold in the Barn - the bride wrapped up in a blanket for the reception (had a sleeveless gown!), & I was glad I wore a long sleeved shirt AND had my jacket!

May 4th is his grandparent's anniversary! There were yellow snapdragons on the table - the only flowers grandma found blooming for her May wedding in 1919! Their attendant carried a lovely spray of dogwood blossoms - cut on their country property.

What a fun day!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Wed April 21 (are we moving into Taurus already??) I'll be playing harp at a late afternoon event at Hillside Retirement community! These background or 'wallpaper' gigs are some of my favorites - The most frequent comments are "We really missed the music when you stopped playing!" or "The music was PERFECT for visiting, offering a nice background, but not too loud!"

It's always fun to play there - & get fed - the Event Coordinator said a number of items should be gluten free - yea! A new consideration for times I 'play out.' If there are veggies, fruit & cheese, I'm a happy girl.

Santa was giving me a candy cane (at Hillside a couple of years ago) - he whispered that we had been doing this Holiday party for the residents in the extended care unit for ~ 5 years!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

St Pat's at Bistro Maison

Last weekend I played a 'wallpaper gig' for a fundraiser; & have been invited back to Bistro Maison, a lovely French restaurant in McMinnville, to play harp (or, as the Wiki entry states: The precise Gaelic term for the' harp of the Gael' is clàrsach Ghàidhealach (Sc.)/cláirseach Ghaelach (Ir.), meaning Gaelic harp) for Saint Patrick's Day lunch, Wed. March 17. This will be the third time I've played cláirseach for St Pat's at the Bistro - always a popular event. This is a lovely setting with great food, & harp - what's not to like?

So if you're thinking of going to lunch, & would like to hear some Celtic music, played on an Irish style Celtic harp, Bistro Maison is the place!

Most of the tunes will be Irish, with a smattering of other Celtic pieces. & my harp, Rowan Luchair, is modeled on a lowhead Irish harp , in her luthier Rick Kemper's words: "Top players from Ireland & Scotland seem to prefer small harps with lighter tension that can respond to the blazing ornamentation they put into their music. Luchair (Gaelic for 'joy' or 'delight') incorporates the best features of these harps."

A young dancing friend is working on learing the Gaelic, & asks me 'how are you' -
Conas tá; tú? (co-nas tah tu) . . . . to which I can reply 'Tá mé go hiontach" (tah-may go hee-un-tachk) - I'm wonderful! or "Tá mé go maith" (tah may go mah) - I'm well!

Over the last few weeks I've received several calls from brides & grooms, interested in booking a harp 'or other stringed instrument' for weddings. A few have requested sound clips on my website- so I'm looking into recording a bit of my harping! This evening I played a bit 'on speaker-phone' for one couple!

So -
Ar mhaith leat lón? (air why lyat lahn) - 'would you like lunch?' Come to Bistro Maison!

Sonas ort! (Happiness be on you)