Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Perils of Outdoor Shows

We thought Father's Day weekend in Leawood, KS, was our "wind test" for this year. Saturday afternoon both of us were literally hanging on to the tent and weights for dear life in 60 mph winds. One display rack was blown over. When we came in Sunday morning, the overnight winds had moved us about one foot closer to our neighbors. But the Kansas winds were tame compared to Iowa.

Iowa has had some rough weather this year, and this past weekend was no exception. We joined the ranks of artists who have had their "showroom" destroyed by wind. This is a first for us in all the years we've been doing this; it had to happen sooner or later. We had set up outside on Friday night, along with about 8 others. When I turned onto the street Saturday morning, my first thought was that I made a wrong turn because there were no tents to be seen. Then, as I got closer, I saw all the carcasses. Thank goodness all of us considered the weather forecast and did not put out product on Friday night. We were in somewhat a state of shock or we would have taken pictures looking back the other way, which would have shown more of the devastation.

As we began picking up the pieces and seeing what we could salvage, two angels appeared to help us sort, collect, and move inside (even though we had been told on Friday there was no space inside despite the weather forecast). I didn't get their names (and should have) because they provided not only helping hands, but a calming influence that let us know we would survive this and move on. Thank you, nameless friends. You have no idea the depth of the assistance you provided us.

We were not familiar with Artsfest Midwest, the "Other" Art Show, so had naively accepted an outdoor space. As it turned out, losing the tent was a blessing since the weather was hot and miserable and the few artists who set up outside Saturday morning saw NO traffic in two days. People attend this show because it is an indoor show and after we became part of the indoor show, we did pretty well. The Des Moines Art Festival was downtown this same weekend, and we heard reports that several artists there were also wiped out by the weather. Our heartfelt sympathy is with them.

On to Sugar Creek Arts Festival in Normal, IL, July 10-11. Yes, another outdoor show. Let's hope the weather gods are smiling upon us.

Hummingbird fact for today: Feeders may be cleaned in hot water alone or with a small amount of vinegar or bleach added. Soap and detergent leave a residue the birds do not like.

No comments: