Hagemeyer:I Wish I Had a Famous Friend | Guest Commentary
by Dale Hagemeyer
Aug 13, 2007 | 256 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print

A famous singer would be nice. Someone with enormous appeal across multiple generations. Someone who would do a benefit concert here in town. Ridgway isn’t a frequent stop on the concert circuit so this would be a fun, out-of-the-way stop. Of course we don’t have a big concert venue like a coliseum, the Hollywood Bowl or Red Rocks. It would be a great benefit concert for the secondary school music room and gym funding initiative.

A concert would also be another chance to have an entire community together – to see friends and feel what it is to be with a community. Then we would have to decide what it means. Are we Ridgwayites? Ourayeans, Ouray Countyites? Maybe we haven’t thought about the term yet because we haven’t fully united. So maybe having an indoor venue where we could unite the entire community would be a huge plus. Rodeo is cool and gets us in touch with our equine/bovine roots in the county, but not everybody likes rodeo. It would have to be something bigger.

So my famous singer friend could pack an auditorium – or a gymnasium. We could probably bring in some local talent to do backup vocals or even backup music. We have some really talented musicians in the community. I saw guitarists and pianists and flautists and more last spring that were quite impressive. Of course the acoustics in the secondary school lunchroom didn’t really do them justice, but the talent was there. I’m sure my friend would appreciate some of the local musicians. I’m sure the local musicians would also be touched by my friend and look back for years on the time they jammed or backed up such a famous person.

In fact, the reverberations would last for a long time. People would probably come out of the woodwork to get involved in the music programs to get prepared for the next time that a famous musician needs some backup. Math test scores would go up accordingly because cognitive scientists have determined that there is a positive correlation between music and math – something about scales and relationships. With all these math whizzes about, we could have a big career expo and spin off a couple ideas for high tech start-up companies. Then we’d be glad we had a nice indoor venue where we could meet as a community. We’d come to look forward to the big art show, and the music-fest, and the theatrical productions, the bigger and better ski swap, the martial arts exposition, the gospel choir festival, and the mother of all garage sales. These would become as popular as the turkey dinner, which of course we’d take to even greater heights.

Of course my friend would have to be a very good friend indeed, once I come clean that we really don’t currently have an indoor venue where he or she could come to perform. Coming all the way to Ouray County to perform for a couple hundred people over at the elementary school might be a bit of a let down. And since the bulk of the community wouldn’t get to see the performance by the famous singer, that wouldn’t make me very popular. I’d be forever known as the guy who brought in [insert famous performer] and conducted a really shoddy raffle for the scarce tickets. Yep. It would have to be some college friend who I have all sorts of childish dirt on so that they would consent to come. Of course if it were the opening night gala to celebrate the new gym and music facilities it would probably make it pretty special in the eyes of my friend and the community.

It seems like having an indoor venue is much more than a part of the school. It is a community thing. The real anchor of the community where we can be united. Where we can have some fun. Where we can partake of the best of music and sport. I just need to have a famous friend. Or do I? Or do you?

Please support the Ridgway Secondary School Gym and Music Room. Help our community build a place to play.

 

Dale Hagemeyer is a member of the communications committee for the Ridgway Secondary School Gym and Music Room Funding Initiative.

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