I became ill for a couple of weeks in February, so it took me awhile to get back in practice. The 12-100 Coffee Shop on Old Seward near Huffman has become our regular Saturday morning hangout, and they like having us come and play dulcimer there, so when we get our act together, we'll start promoting it as a regular event. Elsa is recovered from shoulder surgergy enough that she's joined us the last couple of Saturdays. On March 9th, though, we'll be doing the Empty Bowl benefit at the De'Naina Center. Nornally we do it with Jim and Carol Ann Wolfe as "Empty Nesters" but they are out of town this year. Also this month will be some awesome St. Pat's gigs with either Skye or Else (or both!)
I barely survived the Anchorage Folk Festival. Besides our dulcimer set, and playing for the Irish Dance Academy (both went pretty well!), I spent a lot of time watching the grandson, at home and at the Festival, since he was too sick to go to daycare. By the end of Folk Fest, I became ill myself, which was no big surprise, and my nose has been running like a faucet! By now I have good energy, though. I gave an introductory dulcimer lesson this week, plus Jim and I tried out a Saturday morning gig at the 12-100 Coffee Shop. Not a lot of people there, but they are nice folks so we might keep doing it, since Celtic Treasures has closed. We've been enjoying John Walsh, Rose Flanagan and Pat Broaders who are currently on an Alaska tour. They joined us at McGinley's Jan. 24 and will do another session at Reilly's Feb. 3.
It's been an interesting month -- finally getting back to some dulcimer gigs for the Christmas season, but so sad to have Celtic Treasures permanently closed, since it's where I really enjoyed playing dulcimer most Saturday afternoons. We'll be looking for a new dulcimer venue eventually, so that I can stay in practice! Jim broke his toe, just before we had a couple weeks of daily snowfall, so the shoveling has kept me busy between holiday activities. Everyone has been on edge in Alaska with frequent aftershocks since the November quake. Our Irish sessions have been wonderful with Sky, Cilla Scrady, Ben Saylor, and now Mike and Tania are back in town! We expect these to continue with different folks coming and going. Looking forward to longer daylight and (hopefully) diminishing aftershocks!