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MURRAY HARVEST FESTIVAL 2009


After taking a year off from the festival in 2008, the 2009 Harvest Festival, held 30-August, was great fun. We couldn't have asked for better weather - upper 70s, "t-shirt-n-shorts" weather, but not too hot. After checking thru the sign-in book and figuring that some people didn't sign in, and some people put "and family", we guesstimated about 350 people thru the whole day. That's the best attendance yet. We had 6 acts on the stage from 1:00 to about 7:00pm. We also had plenty of food and drinks, as well as volleyball and badminton courts set up.

Here are some of the results from our latest Harvest Festival. The performer photos are shown in the order they performed in, and I added several other photos I hope you find of interest.


CHANGErr (Rock) George Turner on guitar/vocals, Cheryl Johnson on drums/vocals, Anthony Peters on bass/vocals, and guest musician Dave Hockman on keyboard/vocals. More info on the group can be found at georgeturnerguitararts.com/changerr George has been very gracious to the Murray family for providing his PA system for every harvest festival so far. I provide the mics, stands, cables and outboard mixer, but George provides everything else, along with his expertise in running the sound. Cheryl & Anthony are the "Johnson & Peters Tap Duo" of Seattle. tapdanceseattle.com


DINA BLADE (Jazz and Latin) Dina Blade on vocals, Clayton Murray on keys/key-bass, Jim Knodle on trumpt and Lionel Kramer on drums. More info about Dina can be found at www.dinablade.com


JOHN GIULIANI (Accordion) John played an assortment of tunes and was joined on drums by Lionel Kramer. I joined in later on tuba. John is also a fine bassist.


SANCA CIRCUS 1-DERS (Circus Performers) This is the youth troup from the Sanca circus school. Sanca stands for School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts, and is located in South Seattle. They have large variety of classes for various ages, and you can find more info at www.sancaseattle.org The school also has a small circus band that plays at many of the performances. If anyone has better photos of the performers or of the band, send them to me.


LA BANDA GOZONA (Mexican Band w/ dancers) This group is from Seattle, and they play music mostly from the Oaxacan region of Mexico. They often perform with a large group of dancers, and we were fortunate to have some of them perform with us. The band has about 20 members and we had 10 for this performance. I wasn't able to get photos of all of the dancers, so if anyone has photos of dancers not included here, send them to me. I've been playing tuba with them for about 5 years. For more info on the group, visit their website: labandpark.x10hosting.com

I call this the "Pineapple Dance", altho I'm sure it has a more proper name. After the dance, they give away the pineapples. I was lucky to get one.

Teresita and Max are our main dancers and have been very helpful in getting others involved.


HAYMISH KLEZMER BAND (Klezmer) Clarinetist Ben Smith also plays in the Gozona band. When he suggested having the Haymish group play at the festival, I thought it would be nice to have a klezmer band... and it was! The "stage" is a trailer that Eldon Murray uses for his excavation business (you can contact him thru our website). The light off of the reflectors in one photo is because I used a flash to try to overcome the bright background.


THE HAY RIDE FARM TOUR We took approximately 10 trailers of about 20 people thru the day, for a total of 200. We had 2 tractors with trailers. The ride tours the farm, and takes about 40 minutes - depending on how talkative the driver is, and how fast he drives. Eldon, George, and Brian drove the narrated tours, and Ben drove a few non-narrated tours. The first photo shows Eldon helping to unload one tour, and the 2nd photo has the trailer all loaded up again. Often the trailers would fill up as soon as previous passengers got off, leaving very little time down-time for the driver.

This shows the returning hay ride going past the parking area. It worked out nicely to mow the hay fields that we use for parking and for the games, so that the grass was short for people to walk in. You can see round bales of haylage in a few photos.


THE FOOD COURT We had several tables of goodies, and a grill going cooking various kinds of hot-dogs. Darwin Newell (one of Brian's friends) did all of the grilling. We also had 2 10-gallon containers with lemonade and ice-tea, as well as a 45-cup coffee pot.

According to the inventory list, we served 378 hot-dogs, 336 buns, and used 500 napkins, 3 rolls of paper towels, 340 paper plates, 375 forks and 10 bags of ice. Many guests bring food to augment our own, making for a nice variety for others to choose from, including desserts, salads and fruit. Keeping the food rotated and organized was a big job, handled by Patricia and Barbara.


THE AMPHITHEATER-like seating area is in the shade of big maple trees. Another maple tree gave shade to the performers on the stage. At any time, there are many people gone on the hay ride. I merged 3 photos to create this panoramic picture. (See if you can spot the anomaly due to the merged photos. It's a person). I count 112 people. John Giuliani is on stage. We provided hay bales to sit on, and many people brought their own fold-up chairs or blankets.


GUESSING GAME At the sign-in table, we had a guessing game asking people to guess the distance to walk around the Murray property - in feet. It was 19,821 - give or take a few, I suppose.


GAMES People made a lot of usage of our volleyball and badminton courts. In the first photo, you can just barely make out Mt. Rainier in the background. Too bad it was so hazy that day.


PEOPLE Phil Poppleton talks with his hands, to Eldon. "I tells ya, that bale must've been at least this big, and they was doin' this weird sort of dance with it!!".


If anyone has other photos you think might be useful for this page, or anything else of interest, contact me. CONTACT CLAYTON

Thanks, and we hope to see you at the next Murray LLC Harvest Festival. We'll post info on our website when we decide when to host our next festival.

-Clayton Murray - (I was the guy in a yellow Murray t-shirt, running around organizing the bands, doing the MC-ing, playing piano, or tuba).


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