Hello Dulcimer Friends!




How many of you were able to attend the Walnut Valley Festival? Maybe some of you have never been there and are wondering what the big deal is. What is it that draws people back year after year? Why do people stay in terrible heat and humidity, cold, rain, and flooding?


I’ve been attending the Walnut Valley Festival for around 40 years and have only missed a couple. From my perspective, there is a common thread that holds us all together and keeps bringing us back – the love of music. Whether its fiddle, dulcimer, guitar, accordion, flute, banjo, mandolin, piano, or voice, we share that deep love of the music. It’s also about family. Friends are made, and camps are formed. Those friends become like an extended family that you look forward to seeing each year. To sum it up – it's magical!


I experienced Winfield in a very different way this year. Many of you know I’ve been having some heart

issues. My husband, Jerry, encouraged me to try to go to Winfield for a few days and stay with a friend

in a motel downtown. It all started off well at the picnic, but my health issues became increasingly

difficult each day. I experienced the true Winfield spirit like I never had before through the kindness and

help of security people, friends and acquaintances. The love, care and kindness I received is truly more

then I can put into words. On Tuesday, I gave everyone a scare, including myself, and knew I had to go

home. The following Thursday I was admitted back into the hospital for another heart procedure. Even

though I was struggling with health issues, I’m so thankful I got to attend the festival for a short time –

you may not agree, but it was the BEST medicine for my heart and spirit!!


While I was there, I attended a couple of over-the-top fiddle jams! The highlight for me was an evening I

spent gathered around Connie’s piano with three other fiddlers, one from Nashville. Oh the creative

harmonies that flowed….. I will never forget it!!


Keep playing Friends,

Paula

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