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General News · 15th June 2010
Tanya Henck
The Cortes Music/Arts Festival will be happening in Whaletown at Trude’s Outdoor Stage again this year on July 24th and 25th. It was just recently brought to my attention that there were some noise complaints and apparently some hiking boots and dogs in the Gorge Hall on last years Arts Festival. There has never been a formal conversation about this from the Whaletown Community Club, however I was told that the Arts Festival has been banned from the hall.

The Gorge Hall has had a long reputation of being a festive and celebratory place. When it opened in the earlier part of the last century it immediately hosted parties and music events that would last well into the morning. Of course at that time they needed the light for the horses to buggy them home to opposite ends of the island. However, the energy and glow in the Gorge Hall is evident to all of us who utilize it. Keeping this in mind I feel that there could be a greater level of respect passed around. In order to preserve the energy and use of the hall all need to respect it and the space around it. On the same notion the community also needs to respect the history and nature of this hall, all the hard volunteer work it takes to bring in music from far away and bringing diversity and multiculturalism to this tiny remote island, and appreciation for the musicians who travel so far to come here with little or no monetary reward. I would like to gently remind you that earplugs are a safe, cheap and easy way to avoid noise complaints. It is hard to please everyone. However, a few complaints compared to the number of people from all age groups who gain so much from these events is hard to compare.

So please when attending any Gorge Hall event, show the Hall the respect it deserves and help out and perhaps the surrounding community will extend the same courtesy. Remember if you would like to get involved and have a say with what happens to the Gorge Hall you just have to buy a membership ($10 for individuals, $15 for families) and come to a couple of meetings to voice your thoughts.

BACK TO THE FESTIVAL! So the festival will be happening solely at Trude’s Outdoor Stage this year. I’m sure that everyone will show their appreciation to her by keeping her space clean, tidy and well respected. We definitely need more volunteer help this year and if we do not have more people willing to help out, the survival of the festival is seriously threatened. There will be a work bee before the festival happens, so please listen out for that. Anyone who might be interested in donating wood or building picnic tables would sparkle! We will have vending again this year as well as the usual awesome music throughout the weekend, this year it is Saturday and Sunday July 24th and 25th. This festival takes a lot of money to put on and in the past it has been a few key players soaking up the financial slack. Monetary donations are greatly needed to help cover travel costs for off island performers, as well as places for these performers to stay. If you can offer accommodations, volunteer time or money, we love you already!! If you want to get involved or participate in anyway make sure you have contact before July 1st.

Tanya Henck