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Community Outreach

If you have had many conversations with me, you have probably figured out that I am extremely passionate about two things:

1- The mountain dulcimer (and acoustic music)

2- Community outreach

GPDA is a perfect meshing of these two passions, so it was only natural for me to get involved in the leadership of this organization. Today, I’d like to share with you a new opportunity, plus some existing, slightly re-vamped opportunities.

First, the GPDA organized playdates at nursing homes, senior centers, and churches are a beautiful, long-standing tradition of this club. As our group continues to grow, organizing these events has become a bit more complex. That’s why we are seeking a group of people to function as "Playdate Facilitators". We’re looking for people who can:

• coordinate details with the person requesting a performance

• help set up the performance space

• talk a little about the club and the music during the performance

• play the intros so that everyone starts and ends together

But wait! What if you are only comfortable with some of these things? Can you think of a friend whom you could tag-team with? Sign up as co-facilitators!

Second, Connie Renberger and I are organizing another Dulcimer Orchestra! Connie has once again arranged a piece for us, and I’ll choose a couple more from Steve Eulberg’s Dulcimer Orchestra Library. The performance will be at the Spring Fundraiser on Saturday, April 8th . Rehearsal times will be announced soon – you must commit to practicing the pieces on your own and attending at least two rehearsals. This ensemble is open to all instruments and is a great way for new players to get into ensemble playing. Each part is simple, but the whole experience is rich and complex. Connie and I look forward to leading you in this special music!

Finally, our club meetings are a great place for people with interest in dulcimers to get their very first lesson. Last year there were many months when someone walked in with an instrument they had just purchased (or dug out of the closet for the first time in many years)! Because we have an amazing group of people, someone always jumped up to provide a String-Side-Up-Beginner lesson. I’d like to see us organize this better, though! Would you be willing to teach a brand-new beginner once or twice throughout the year? Choose a month or two to be the “teacher” if a new player walks in!

You may also sign up for Playdate Facilitator, Dulcimer Orchestra, and String-Side-Up-Beginner Teachers by calling me at 785- 614-4061 or emailing Thanks for your continuing passion for music and outreach! This is going to be a great year!

-Erin Mae, VP

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