Tuesday, August 31, 2010

BlueGrass Festival at Mehama Oregon

We were invited to attend a Blue Grass Festival at a small town on the Santiam Pass. The town is called Mehama. A very pretty little town set right off the highway.

The festival was held in a very large field that is normally used for sports. It was backed by a beautiful river. I'll have photos of it posted as soon as I get them edited. I suspect the field was once a hay field as the parts of it not specifically used for sports was obviously hay at one time. Had that smell to it. Fresh mown hay, was fine by me.
There were probably about 20 vendors there, my store, Rayvens Rarities was included in the number. The foot traffic at this event was pretty slow as the weekend this was held was the same weekend that the Oregon State Fair opened.

The music was very nice but the best music, in my opinion, was played by a single musician that was set up out in the vendors area with us. There was a young man and he played the Pan Flute. He is a member of a band but the rest of them were covering another event, so he was just by himself.
His music was absolutely beautiful. What he was doing was playing some of the bands CD's that they have, then as the parts came along that he played in he played his instruments along with the CD right there at the festival.

Some of the music on the CD's they had actually set up to record at live spots like they set up along side a river somewhere and played along with the river rushing by in the background. Another CD they traveled up a mountain and recorded up in the high altitudes to get the sound of wind and Eagles calling to each other in the recording.

Absolutely breath taking music. And what an idea for a music CD. Traveling up a mountain to record it.

We were there as vendors again and met some very nice people. There was one booth there that was a personal favorite of mine. It was a Husband and Wife and they were making and serving hand dipped Chocolates and Carmel apples. 
They were taking fresh fruit like Raspberries or Blackberries and dipping them in White Chocolate. They would make a base of white chocolate, dip a berry in the chocolate, then place it on the base. Wait for it to harden just a bit and repeat the process until they had a bit of a "stack" of chocolate dipped berries.

Oh My God they were so yummy. I had a hard time not making myself sick with eating them, and the smell of the chocolate and the Carmel they were using to hand dip the apples was simply heavenly, drifting on the clean crisp mountain air. And with just a hint of the Hay smell, couldn't ask for a better combination. Definitely got my thoughts turning towards Fall and the start of the home baking season.

They used Granny Smith Apples for the Carmel apples. I thought it was a better choice than the usual Red Delicious apples that are the norm. I've got NO objection to Red Delicious, but the Granny Smith apples had a bit more of a tart taste and a crisper bite to them in my opinion.

And some of the Carmel apples they rolled in toppings like nuts or M&M's. Some of them they even drizzled with the White, Dark or Milk Chocolate. YUMMMM.

They were located across from us and about 2 booths down so all those wonderful smells drifting on the air everyday was enough to make a person gain weight just smelling the air floating around.
Fresh and cool mountain air with the scent of the Apples, Chocolate and Carmel, with just a hint of fresh mown hay, was just grand.

Oh and then mix in the smells of the Native American Fry Bread booth just down from us and you had a scent feast going on.

We are due to go to another Native Powwow in October so I'll be sure to write about that as well

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Turtle Island Native American Gathering

I was recently invited to attend, as a vendor , a Native American gathering in Lebanon Oregon. It was called the Turtle Island First Gathering.
So I packed up all the merchandise from my RAYVENS RARITIES  on line store and headed for Lebanon Oregon where this gathering was being held.

This was not the first year for this gathering, but it was the first year for it in the location it was in. The group was allowed to use a field at the Fritz Stables located in the Lebanon Oregon area.

The property was originally owned by the parents of the people that now own it, and was originally a HUGE dairy farm but is now being used as a stables.

We set up and then left to stay in an apartment that belongs to a friend of my Daughters. She lives in Corvallis. She is not using the apartment right now as she's here in Redmond for the summer but will return to Corvallis and her apartment in September for college. This worked out great for us as it gave us a place to go every night.

We were given the use of a very large field that had a very beautiful river at the rear just behind where the vendors set up their booths. It was absolutely gorgeous. In the mornings, before the event got underway, and all of us vendors were just kind of sitting around and waiting for the day to start, you could hear the river running in the background.

When we went back behind our booth there, we could see the beautiful river slowly flowing, hear the water running by and listen to all the birds calling out in the trees that stood just at the edge of the banks that led to the water.
It was such a peaceful and pretty place to be. At the end of the event, I really had NO wish to go home :)

For breakfast one of the mornings of the event, we were treated to Native Fry Bread from the lady that actually organized this gathering, Morning Starr. She had a booth one down from where we had ours and she treated all the vendors to a Fry Bread breakfast. Yummmm

The event was a 3 day event with lots of Native dancing and other entertainments. There was a Native American Honor Guard to represent the military service given by some of the members of the group or to honor loved ones gone now that had served in the military in years past.

The gathering had a Native Drum group to play and sing for the dancers to dance to. And we were fortunate enough to have a Native Whipman in attendance as well.
A Whipman is a Native man that serves as a dance leader. He's responsible for keeping the dancers in line and for starting the dances. The man that performed the duties of Whipman for this event was Marcus.

Marcus is in his full regalia in the first three photos. The end photo is of the Chief of this group, Red Bear. In the background in the ribbon shirt is one of the Native Honor Guards speaking with some of the other members.

We had a wonderful time and are planning on taking my store, RAYVENS RARITIES back on the road, in July of 2011 if we are lucky enough to be invited back.