Sunday, August 01, 2010

Musikfest 2010

The yellow "Musikfest Parking" signs are everywhere.
If this was 15 years ago, I would be excited looking forward to my vacation.
I used to spend a week of my vacation at Musikfest, the decades long huge music festival that shuts down various sections of Bethlehem, PA.
I would carefully save money so I would have $20 to $25 a day to spend on food tickets and a CD if I liked the performer. I bought the shuttle/trolley pin as soon as they were on sale so I could ride the shuttle bus from the parking lots and the trolley around the platzes for one price. I also bought the book of schedules and carefully plotted my course between platzes to see the performers I thought were the best. Most of the time I would spend the better part of the day at one platz, usually Leiderplatz or Volksplatz, and then head home by dark to avoid Main Street and the drunks.
Yep there were drunken rowdies at Musikfest - still are.
Last year one of them sucker-punched the horse of a mounted cop.
No lie.

Musikfest was my vacation spot every year.
And I would get teased about it - by people who took vacations to Mexico, the Bahamas, etc.
I would just shrug. It was what I could afford.
I went every year - except the year Rich Korpics was in U of P Hospital waiting for a heart transplant.
I went when it stormed.
I went when there was a tornado warning.
I went when it was 100 degrees.
But times, any my salary, have changed.
And so have I and so has Musikfest.
It's still the best place to hear all different types of music and most of it for free.
But I don't spend a week's vacation to go.
Sometimes I don't go at all.
I'm older and spend my vacation $ and time going to other places: England, Seattle to see Heather, Gettysburg.
I'm older and I can't handle the crowds as well - even the afternoon crowds that are not so drunk and rowdy.
I'm older and I can't handle the heat as well - or the walking.
But this year, I have tickets to Cherish the Ladies. I love that group. Morgan and I may spend the afternoon at Leiderplatz or Volksplatz and then take the short stroll to the evening concert. We may go again on Friday, if the weather's not too hot and there's something we want to see/hear.
And that will be my Musikfesting for the year.
The festival is changing, getting larger with more ticketed venues and more drinking, and I don't seem to fit into it anymore; maybe I've changed, too.
Change is not always bad.
But sometimes it's not all good, either.

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