It's Only Just Begun
The first night of the Gentlemen of the Road Stopover is underway. Storefronts are decorated, pop-up vendors have their signs and banners flying, and security and medical teams are at the ready. Out-of-towners are steadily arriving via Highway 12 to our little corner of southeast Washington State and are setting up their campsites or checking into other lodgings. Walla Walla appears ready to host the biggest thing since the Oregon Trail passed through a century and a half ago.
Here are some behind the scene photos of Thursday evening's festivities.
This group is the main reason I came downtown tonight--to hear the youngest band chosen to play for this event. They are all local kids--three will be seniors at WaHi except for the banjo player who graduated in June. They play a lively set of old-time folk and bluegrass songs that got the crowd tapping their feet and clapping along. Way to go Blue Valley Balladeers.
My other modus operandi was to people watch.
I love this t-shirt, but apparently it is the official logo shirt
for the local workers which is not available to the public. Darn!
There is a rumor circulating of an unannounced band coming to town.
Do you suppose this guy is a member of Pearl Jam in disguise?
No dogs allowed, but I guess this little guy slipped through.
He seems well-behaved.
Clearly clothing is optional for the younger set.
With temperatures in the high 90s, many wish they could do the same.
Thank goodness for some rules!
Behind the scenes sound guy working during the Blue Valley Balladeers set.
One of the un-sung heroes of a live musical event.
Obviously, not all came for the music.
Even some of the firefighters who are still mopping up the
Blue Creek fire came to town to see what's happenin'.
While walking is always an option to get from the GOTR campground
to the downtown festivities, there are big yellow school buses
circulating every 5-10 minutes.
Another option is a pedi-cab.
Only in Walla Walla do you see farm equipment on display in the
middle of a music festival. I love it! (And not just because it's red.)
Another 'Only in Walla Walla.' A cute idea for a souvenir photo, nevertheless.
Traffic on Highway 12 has to be re-routed to make it safer for everyone.
As a result, I now live in a 'gated community.' ;)
The main stage and concert venue may be quiet tonight,
but starting tomorrow, it's gonna be rockin'!
P.S. I love this sign not only for the polite message but also for the fact that the plural possessive apostrophe was used correctly.