Summer off to a fun start

You have to love summer and all of the outdoor activities that are available to most everyone because the prices are reasonable.

For example, there is Chingawassa Days in Marion the first weekend in June every year with top-notch talent.

Kudos to the leadership in Marion who pull this big event off every year. I understand some of the younger folks have stepped up to replace some of those who have not wavered for so many years.

By the size of the crowd when Charlie Daniels and his band showed up for the feature concert, it was the right choice. I don’t remember seeing Central Park being so full as it was this year.

At 80 years old, Charlie Daniels is an inspiration to all who have entered that rarified air and are still working at his age.

He may have lost a step or two, choosing to sit for some of the time and using a swivel chair, but his music has not lost anything as far as I am concerned.

He is an interesting guy if you read his blog on the Charlie Daniels website.

I called last week Anniversary Week and it was a great celebration.

We had dinner with good friends, had dinner in Lost Springs, which kind of ties in with the “Get Smart” comment I made last week.

We then attended the Wichita River Festival last Friday night to hear three musical acts for the crazy $10 price for a button.

One local band performing went by the name of Daydream, which I thought would have been more appropriate if they had been named Nightmare.

They were followed by one of our favorite musicians, Marcia Ball from Austin, Texas. She was followed by Randy Newman, whom I have always liked for his lyrics and piano sound. It was harder to hear in a large venue like the one at the River Festival, but we moved closer and it was good again.

Newman is no spring chicken either, but is another inspiration for performing at his age.

If you Google him and the look for the songs he has written, you may be surprised who has performed them.

We stayed at the Water Walk Hotel, which is very close to the Wichita River Festival.

It’s within walking distance if you don’t mind walking a ways. My better half got us a deal on the night’s stay, which had breakfast.

When you go to an event the size of the River Festi­val you always wonder if you might run into someone you know. Well, we did. Twice. The same people on Friday in Wichita and also on Saturday in Newton.

I kind of begged for ice cream on the way home. Caramel with cashews and sea salt is delish.

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@
hillsborofreepress.com.