Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Festival of the Arts: Columbia, MO

Columbia, MO
September 27 & 28, 2008 


► Left the house around eight o'clock.

► Dropped the dogs off for boarding at the vet's in Harrison.

► Had lunch at a roadside park on the south side of Camdenton, MO.

► Made our regular stop at the Humane Society resale shop in Camdenton. Jo bought a few items including purchasing a pair of sandals for a buck. They looked as if they'd never been worn. (Jo wore the sandals over the weekend and found them quite comfortable -- so comfortable she thought she might buy more when these wore out. Once home, she looked up the manufacturer online and found that the sandals sold for $90.00. I reckon she won't be buying more of that brand, but Jo certainly did get a good deal.)

One of the groups performing Saturday was I Am Kenny J. Productions. Their main thing was teaching audience members the basics of R & B line dancing. Some aspiring ballerinas who'd danced earlier thought this was great fun.

► The trip to Columbia was uneventful until we got about five miles out of town where another of the van's tires experienced tread separation. Strangely, even though the tire was down to the steel belts, it did not blow out. I don't know if being inflated but having no structure was good or bad as far as the van's handling while getting it stopped and off the highway was concerned. I was driving. The van wanted to weave all over the place while I was getting it shut down.

This tire was in the same location (right rear) as the one that blew on the way home from Springfield, IL.

There was no other similarity, though. It was the old tire I'd been using as a spare and was neither the same brand nor the same age as the first tire.  We were very near a exit. I was able to get the van off the highway and into a parking lot where I changed the tire. While just as much work, being off the road's shoulder made that part of the experience much safer.

► With the tire changed, we continued our trip to our motel in Columbia where we unloaded all our personal stuff from the van. Then, it was on down to the show site on the Boone County Courthouse Square where we got all the show paraphernalia unloaded and the canopies and fixtures set up.

Boone County Courthouse in Columbia, MO


► We were back down to the show site by around seven o'clock Saturday. Jo and I got our pots and spoons unpacked and arranged in plenty of time for the show's opening at 10:00 AM.

► Sales were decent, but only just barely -- not nearly as good as last year. There's no way to obtain attendance figures at a free show like this one, but the crowd seemed way down. With all the uncertainty in the political and economic arenas, I'm afraid "decent" is the best we can hope for with our fall shows.


► Sales were a repeat of Saturday. Ditto for the crowd.

► The show closed at 5:00 PM. It took Jo and I until a little after eight o'clock to get everything torn down, packed and loaded back into the van.

Japanese drumming group from St. Louis performing onstage.


► Awoke to rain. Columbia's forecast called for rain all day due to a cold front moving through, but I managed to get the van loaded between showers. I figured we'd have to drive in rain most of the way home, but we soon left the showers behind. In fact, most of the trip home was sunny.

► Stopped at a Wal-Mart in Camdenton and bought the items that had be accumulating on our Wal-Mart List for several weeks. I think we ended up leaving most of our show profits in Missouri.

► Both Jo and I were worried about our tire situation. We had no spare and one of the tires on the ground was bought at the same time as the tire that separated on the way home from our last show. Having two different tires in the same location on the van come apart was a coincidence that worried me, but I could not think of any mechanical problems with the van that would cause this. I checked that tire several times for early signs of tread separation, but found none. We made it home with no problems.