From The President of The Board 24 November 2014
Well, It's over.
I am not presidential material. But I have to say I know how to put a war room together. A president plans, prepares, delegates, implements and manages.
The positive outcome of any successful endeavor rarely depends on the efforts of one individual. We always hear stories about the maverick who made it on his own but I am here to tell you that it's total BS. What makes things happen are the cowboy's and cowgirls who have and always will, "ride for the brand!"
For you non cowboy folks, what we are talking about here is loyalty. The willingness to step up and step in and support the cause or endeavor upon which the Ranch has embarked. Sometimes you need do it because you are taking the bosses money, and you know what your paid for, sometimes you do it because you know it's the right thing to do, sometimes you do it out of friendship and sometimes you do it to just get the job done and get on the other side of it. But every good cowboy knows, that once the stampede has started is Not the time to sand up and say "This s--t aint right!".
I have been privileged to work with one the finest groups of people ever to put together an outfit. I am sure that throughout the country there are top hands and owners who feel the same way about the folks who "ride for the brand" for their outfit. This concept is what built America, it's what defines American values and is what we need to acknowledge, cherish and save working in both directions, from management down to labor up. (But that's a different subject).
The Board Of Directors of the Monterey Cowboy Poetry and Music Festival put on a heck of a show this past weekend. For you who were able to attend, you know that you experienced something really special. For those of us who worked hard to but it together it was truly a labor of love. We have one, and only one board member who is compensated and that isn't for their work on the board it is for a vital task for the Festival. The dedication, loyalty and friendship of each of these individuals to "the brand" has carried this adventure on for sixteen years.
From the Board to the many volunteers who stepped up every year to make it happen we offer a huge THANK YOU. It aint much but it comes from the very bottom of our hearts. THANK YOU to our sponsors, donors, grantors, The Arts Council of Monterey County and the Board of Supervisors who have supported us these many years. To the venders who come and show their support and trust that we will offer up a show that will attract buyers for their amazing wares, THANK YOU for your trust and support, from the bottom of our hearts. To the people who provide our technical support on both sides of the house, Paul Cain and the folks at the Monterey Conference Center, THANK YOU. A special note here, Jesse, who worked on the maintenance and service support side for some 31 years for the City and Conference Center and supported the Festival for every one of its 16 years retired today...THANK YOU, congratulations and I'm looking forward to that cup of coffee.
And now to the performers for this years show. This is the first year I have been able to interact with "The Talent". I am not an articulate guy. I did not intend to be the primary announcer for the festival and I apologize for my less than professional introductions. Each of you, especially Doris Daley, Chris Isaacs and Paul Zarzyski, poets and masters of the written word and the creators of rich textured mental images through the spoken word, and all the artists who endured my introductions, THANK YOU. Thank you for your kindness and forbearance of my attempts but thank you for being the consummate professionals and gentlefolk you are.
Last and far from least, THANK YOU to our audience. To the people who attend our Festival, every one of us on the board want to express our gratitude and affection for the many years some of you have attended. Even as a "grunt" working for many years in the background of the festival many of you have taken the time to express your thanks personally while we labored at putting up booths, sound systems, signs or posters. You are our "raison d'être". Without YOU, we could have just had a house party.
We know there were some problems this year and we sincerely apologize for each and every one of them. I take full responsibility for each and every one of them. If you have something negative to say about this festival, bring it right to me. I'll pass it on to whoever needs to know.
To the public. It would behoove you, when you attend a public performance, or if your just out to dinner, to remember the people who are bringing it to you. From the "house" and staff and volunteers, ticket sales folks, technical staff, people in concessions, bus people, servers, desk folks, managers, associates, chefs, cooks, and the business owners. We are the service industry. Festivals are a part of that industry. We endeavor to make your experience a special one. We WANT you to be happy. If we are having a bad day remember, we may have had to deal with a jackass right before we enter your life. A smile and a hello are the best way to get good service. Don't be that person right before we enter someone else's life. You have a right to good service and a good performance, you don't have a right to be a jackass.
To the rest of the world. SUPPORT THE ARTS! When we lose the arts, we lose our humanity. Kind of like deselecting the opposable thumb.
Be kind to each other, be good to each other and happy trails.