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this time of worry and confusion, we're glad we can offer
some mirth, humor and fellowship. Often laughter is a good
(and welcome) medicine...
our 2008 Newsletter pdf
Family and Friends:
I hope this letter finds you warm and cozy
as the Solstice marks our journey back to longer
days of light - the seasonal reminder that the
sun will shine again and warmer days lie ahead...
Since 1981, we have been
presenting tours and residencies, with our signature
colorful parades, fun and educational workshops
and wacky, rollicking vaudeville variety shows
in theaters, parks, schools, hospitals, nursing
homes, correctional facilities - gathering places
where communities often form. Our fees are on
a sliding scale, so that cost does not exclude
a financially-strapped community.
In confusing and challenging
times, laughter, friendship and mirth are some
of the main ingredients for a nourishing meal
for tired and care-worn spirits. We are honored
to serve up "soul food".
In 2007, we continued to deepen our commitment
to strengthen community with education, entertainment
and laughter. We worked with local non profits
that are doing great things in their communities.
Our Partners included environmental groups, agencies
that support and educate at-risk children and
their families, a city wide garden project for
low-income residents, a community radio station,
a boys and girls club, art and music programs
in schools, an Alzheimer's association, and an
animal rescue organization.
helped raise thousands of dollars for non profit
helped raise awareness of their projects and
created and donated 60 baby quilts to infants
in Washington, Montana and Idaho. Since 1998,
our Community Quilt Project has donated 660
quilts to infants who are medically, emotionally
or financially challenged.
2008, we look forward to partnering with a
sustainability festival, homeless communities,
children's programs, health organizations, elder
facilities and correctional facilities.
is a labor of love, organized and presented by
volunteers who believe that laughter is a serious
issue and that strong communities nurture and
Our budget for 2008 is
$50,000. It will pay for transportation, food,
supplies, costumes and props, posters, promotion,
insurance, storage, office expenses, website,
legal and accounting fees and all the things to
keep our show on the road. We will raise two-thirds
of the budget with performance fees, benefit shows
and on-going annual donations. All donations fund
our projects and activities that support them.
If our mission and projects
speak to your heart, we invite you to send us
your good wishes and ideas. Some of the best ideas
are suggestions from our friends.
you would like to make a tax-deductible donation,
our address is:
New Old Time Chautauqua
PO Box 334
Port Townsend, WA 98368
you for past support, we couldn't do what
we do without your blessings, attendance at our
benefit shows, donations and gifts. We hope you
will continue to be a part of our family. We are
honored to represent you as Ambassadors of Good
Will, Friendship and Laughter.
Best wishes for a happy
and peaceful new year.
by: Michelle Bates
Board of Directors
New Old Time Chautauqua
2007 Non profit partners in Washington, Montana
radio * Sunburst Foundation * Family Concepts
* Boys and Girls Club of the Blackfoot Nation
* Garden City Harvest * Troy Fine Arts Council
* Alzheimer's Association of Greater Idaho * Wolf
Hollow Wildlife Rehabilitation Center * Islands'
Oil Spill Association
* Amber Tide * Avner the Eccentric * Stephen "Foolio"
Bent * David Clay * Godfrey Daniels * Mark Ettinger
* Fighting Instruments of Karma Marching Chamber
Band/Orchestra * Flying Karamazov Brothers * Tim
Furst * Baby Gramps * Hacki * Happenstance * Haute
Trash * Jambalaya Brass Band * Jasmine * Juggling
Jollies * Kaiyama * Land Phil-Harmonics * Mamazon
* Kevin Murphy * Nanda * Super Noodlini and Family
* Frank Olivier * One Two * Jim Page * Jasper
Patterson * Faith Petric * Joey Pipia * The Planets
* Shoehorn * Spike and Boom Boom * Cathy Sutherland
* Christian Swensen * Vern and Dream * Vanessa
Vortex * Sam Williams
* Acrobatics * Instrument-making out of recycled
materials * Community Quilts * Samba drumming
* Mask-making * Magic * Rope-walking * Song swap
* "Inconvenient Truth Slide Show" (about
Fighting Instruments of Karma Marching
Photo by: Michelle Bates
build community through laughter, entertainment
present programs to diverse communities with
a focus on under-served areas
partner with local groups to organize and
present community events
promote interaction within communities.
of the Board
Make Stuff Happen
Incredible volunteer staff, performers, workshop leaders
and support people
New Old Time Chautauqua is alive and well - continuing
to grow and flourish. While we are still presenting
Vaudeville Extravaganzas, Workshops and Parades to
delight and excite audiences of all ages, we are also
doing more free community service work to help build
stronger and healthier communities.
are an incredibly valuable part of this organization.
Your support and donations are what keep us going.
We thank you and also look forward to hearing your
ideas, thoughts and comments. We're always looking
for the "next cool thing" to do, and our
best ideas have come from members of our huge family.
Please write us and let us know about your brainstorms
and dreams about how NOTC can help foster community
- it's amazing what this large animal can do...
have found ourselves wanting to respond to current
events - to the people whose lives and homes were
devastated by Hurricane Katrina, to an under-funded
school arts program, to a community gardens that needed
have learned that we can do our community service
work with our own Chautauqua humor and spirit.
2006, 40 Chautauquans weeded a garden in the hot sun
and were serenaded by our live bluegrass band while
jugglers tossed gardening implements in the air. On
the Jambalaya Tour, 250 heroic relief workers were
served supper, Chautauqua-style, while enjoying an
evening of juggling, magic, music and comedy. Tools
used for relief work in the morning, found their way
into a topical skit in the evening show.
Common Ground Volunteers in New Orleans
at Work in New Orleans' 9th Ward
by Michelle Bates
1981, the Flying Karamazov Brothers (Masters
of Juggling and Cheap Theatrics) and Family
got together with Dr. Patch Adams and the Gesundheit
Institute over a lovely, zany dinner in Arlington,
Virginia. The idea that emerged that night was
a Traveling Vaudeville Medicine Show and Educational
Circus. Our vision was that the entertainment
would attract audiences and they'd stick around
for educational workshops. We'd
make learning fun. We'd bring our workshops
and invite the host communities to present theirs,
too. We'd share our skills and knowledge with
have grown and expanded our program over 25
years of touring. We have seen that through
live performance and hands-on workshops, we
can act as a catalyst; bringing people together
by sharing laughter and creativity.
the beginning, our focus has been to bring live
entertainment to people in rural areas - places
that often only get entertainment through recorded
or broadcasted media. These places are often
financially challenged or struggling. Donations
and grants and Chautauqua Benefit Shows (presented
in larger cities) help us make enough money
to be able to charge these small communities
less than our usual fee. (We have even charged
as little as the cost of getting us there!)
2-3 week Chautauqua tour costs between $15-27,000.
The expenses are primarily travel and food.
Because Chautauqua is a "labor of love",
the 50+ performers, workshop leaders and support
people are volunteers.
April 2006, Chautauqua's Jamabalaya Vaudeville
Tour was generously supported by the Oregon
Country Fair, Rex Foundation, Fresenius Health
Care and many individual donors. The intention
of this special tour was to present free shows
for Hurricane Katrina survivors and volunteer
relief workers in New Orleans and the coast
the end of the tour, we strengthened our commitment
to do more service work and free shows. These
shows are presented in hospitals, schools, libraries,
senior centers, juvenile detention centers,
jails - wherever a little extra joy and laughter
is welcome. We
also hope to shed some light on issues that
need attention. This year we presented a Chautauqua
show at Sponsors (in Eugene, OR), a facility
that assists people while they make the difficult
transition from jail back into the community.
experience in the Southern Gulf Coast showed
us that individuals can do many things to make
the world a better place. Many Chautuaquans
were inspired to do volunteer service work when
they returned home. We have found that anyone
and everyone can make their voice heard and
in New Orleans
Waveland, MS. Elementary School
"Watching my grandson, Charlie, smile as he
was tickled while having his face painted, laughing
as he was juggling balls for the first time
and being mesmerized by the Chautauqua Musicians,
was an amazing experience for me-knowing that
it was his first celebration after losing his
home and all of his possessions in Hurricane
Katrina. I could not have paid enough for the
smiles or repay the Chatauquans for the joy
they brought to all of us in Bay Saint Louis."
and Director of Cultural Affairs, Bay St Louis,
Community Quilts Project, which began
in 1992, has donated over 600 quilts to
infants in-need. We give Baby Quilts to
children who are at risk - physically,
emotionally, psychologically or financially
challenged. Quilts are created in workshops
on tour and by residents of Victoria House,
an assisted living facility in Port Townsend,
WA. This year we donated 60 quilts to
St. Rose de Lima Church (Bay St. Louis,
MS), Common Ground Women's Center (New
Orleans, LA), Sponsors* (Eugene, OR),
White Earth Ojibwe Reservation (White
Earth, MN), and Jefferson Healthcare Hospital
(Port Townsend, WA).
St. Louis recipient
photo by: Lorraine Anderson
provides transitional living services to
ex-offenders in Lane County with most of
our clientele coming to us directly from
prison. The women's program was presented
with handmade quilts as gifts for our women
with small children. I do not have the words
to describe the beauty & care in these simple
pieces of cloth. So far, we have handed
out three blankets to new babies and it
brings tears to my eyes every time. It symbolizes
the hope that a small gift such as this
can represent. Someone cares & believes
your child is a gift to be treasured."
Daugherty, Director of Women's Services,
Sponsors Inc, Eugene, OR
continue to learn the value and strength of partnering
with like-minded organizations and individuals.
This year's Jambalaya Vaudeville Tour and last
year's Hurricane Relief bus (Chautauqua's biodiesel
bus transported survivors and delivered goods
in hurricaneland) were both ideas "sparked"
by the Port Townsend-Bay St. Louis Sister City
Project. The Oregon Country Fair and Rex Foundation
awarded us grants for the Jambalaya Tour - both
organizations share with us the belief that music
and laughter nurtures the spirit and soul.
of our active members is diabetic. Fresenius Health
Care (the dialysis corporation that operates the
clinic that he visits 3 times a week) awarded
the Jambalaya Tour a grant, and is now interested
in other Chautauqua service-work performed in
health care facilities.
weeks before the tour, we presented "The
Jambalaya Cabaret" in Port Townsend. It was
a knock-yer-socks-off vaudeville dinner show (fronted
by a dynamite New Orleans style band) served up
with an authentic southern jambalaya dinner. Sort
of a Teatro Zinzanni with grits... Proceeds and
other small donations from well-wishing friends
made up half of the funding needed for the Tour.
are in the works for the upcoming 2007 Summer
Tour. We hope to travel through Montana
and Idaho, and end with a Vaudeville Extravaganza
in Boise. We will partner with city governments,
Native American reservations, and community
agencies that support at-risk youth, families
information will be available on our website
again, thank you for your support and welcome
to the family.
gang in St Bernard Parish, LA
Vice President New Old Time Chautauqua Board of
Autumn 2005 Newsletter
This last summer, we completed a residency in Klamath
Falls, Oregon, where - with workshops, shows and
our colorful presence - we joined them in celebrating
their centennial. During our time there, we camped
out at Riverside Elementary, a decommissioned school
now being used by various community organizations.
keeping with our tradition of community involvement,
we gave public workshops in Veteran's Park and brought
these workshops, along with an abridged version
of our show, to the young people at the Klamath
County Juvenile Correctional Facility. We also had
time to lend a hand at the local community garden
and were delighted to share some great food and
entertainment at a potluck with some Klamath Falls
particular highlight was the Centennial parade,
in which we marched - along with dozens of period
horse-drawn carriages, buggies, and residents dressed
in early 20th century costumes.
highlight was our main stage Vaudeville Show, given
at the beautiful Ross Ragland theatre, to an audience
of returning fans and first-timers alike.
that's not all! We also had time to bring all these
good things to the neighboring town of Lakeview,
almost 100 miles to the east, where we spent one
extremely full day doing a parade, workshops, and
in the World
a letter from Tom Noddy,
detailing the 90th birthday (that's right,
she was born in 1915!) of our very own Official
Crone, Faith Petric:
(not Tom Noddy)
by Nancy Levidow
... you just KNOW that she was all sweet
and smiling and near tears at a few sentimental
moments and, of course, flipping out tough-gal
zingers whenever you least expected it from
the sweet looking granny. Even if you know
her well and expect it, she still finds
a way to lull you into not expecting it
just before she delivers it.
was Faith's 90th birthday and the celebration
event took place at Berkeley's Freight and
Salvage, the Bay Area's rock-solid funky
folk gathering house. Of course, Faith insisted
that her birthday concert be run as a benefit
for the club and so it was. Of course, it
was sold out.
Phillips was flippant and funny and deeply
serious as the MC. He reminded us that ours
was a Faith-based event. He read personal
notes sent in by Pete Seeger and Sy Kahn
and Jean Ritchie and other famous, infamous,
sane and other sorts of folks. He also offered
his own asides throughout and you could
see the history that Faith and Utah share
... he was real.
Gilbert was there and a whole slew of Faith's
friends -- most of them singing songs that
they had written for Faith's birthday (although
some were written for previous birthdays
of hers -- someone pointed out "she's had
lots of them").
told about her round-the-world trip (begun
in the 40's, interrupted by the world's
plans and resumed in the 70's), her college
days, her work for causes, her hosting of
the folk singers through the years, her
trips on Chautauqua, her sense of humor,
her sense of song, her prodigious age and
her practiced memory.
Faith was the focus of the evening, the
songs were all either sung by her (solo
or with friends) or sung about her. It was
her birthday but, as is the case with these
sorts of things, the real gifts were for
all of us who were present. We sat with
other people who have shared her in their
lives (some only know her onstage but ...
that's not a small thing either).
Vance wrote a round that included the words:
A shining star, a thousand songs:
Our Faith is great, Our Faith is strong
Bronstein's song complained:
Faith's 90th birthday demands a great
song, But to write one I had a hard time
,For how can a guy write a song about Faith
, When to her name, there ain't any rhyme
Nancy Shimmel sang:
To the Faith that keeps us going, we hope
for a long long time, And the love she gives
with cups of tea and hugs and rhythm and
Rozay (from San Jose) sang:
As she sings out the wisdom of her four
score and ten, Leading the chorus when folks
march again, Regales us with Utah, invokes
Alice Paul, And flies 'round the planet
to sing for us all
(who arranged for the recording of all of
these songs on CD ... you can contact her
about whether she'll make more ... they
all sold out that night ... she's available
via telephone at 800 222 4974) wrote
Faith sows gardens of songs, Like seedlings
we all sing along
Reid was there and he sang this:
I knew it was love at first sight, The first
time I saw her onstage, About to go hitching
to circle the world/And showing us all that
her age, Was a springboard instead of a
words to all of the songs seemed appropriate,
I especially like the one by Bob Reid ...
but these are the words that the evening
reminded me of as I walked out (maybe you've
heard Faith sing it):
Pleasure to Know You ... Karl Williams
say life's a journey a highway from birth
Mapped in despair and traveled in hopelessness
Well they may believe it but just between
you and me
The trick to the traveling is all in the
New Old Time Chautauqua's Mission is
about building community. One of the ways
we do this by interacting with diverse communities,
particularly in underserved areas. We are
proud to be a part of the grassroots efforts
that are helping those who have been affected
by Hurricane Katrina.
Katrina Bus Transportation Project
Wednesday, September 7, two buses fueled
by biodiesel and veggie oil, left Port Townsend,
Washington, headed for Houston to shuttle
evacuees to safe havens. The Chautauqua
Bus and Sunflower Bus are working with Katrina
Caravan Rescue, an organization operating
a nationwide, volunteer-led transit network.
They are transporting people to already
committed housing--homes and shelters that
are ready to welcome and receive them.
buses arrived in Texas, loaded with non-perishable
food and supplies donated by the Port Townsend
Community. The generosity of the PT citizens,
Chatauquans and other friends has kept this
project on the road. A group of us at home
continue to raise funds and help with any
challenges that the buses encounter.
volunteers have worked with Veterans for
Peace in Covington, Louisiana transporting
people and delivering supplies to evacuees.
In hard-hit Waveland, Mississippi they helped
prepare meals for over a thousand people
a day with Food Not Bombs and the Rainbow
Family Kitchen. Through the Bay City Senior
Center, they helped seniors with home repair
and the removal of fallen trees. The needs
in the Gulf area are constant and seem to
change by the day. One thing that is true
is that the devastation is huge and the
process of rebuilding and normalizing lives
has just begun.
the buses are fueled by biodiesel and veggie
oil, gas shortage is not an issue. There
is biodiesel available in many states, and
veggie oil is strained and prepared for
fuel throughout the journey.
project is co-sponsored by the New Old Time
Chautauqua and the Port Townsend Peace Movement.
This is an all volunteer effort.
more information: 360-385-2212
read stories and view photos from this relief
effort, visit our Katrina
Bus page and follow links to stories
in the Port Townsend Leader. Also see www.sistercitysupport.net
and Comfort to the Babies in Bay St Louis
House and the New Old Time Chautauqua are
committed to sending Baby Quilts to all
the infants in Bay St Louis, Port Townsend's
Sister City in Mississippi. Twenty-five
quilts will be sent this month. More quilts
will be sent as the population increases.
The quilts will be distributed by the Hancock
County Child Development Agency.
family was thrilled
to welcome into the world Chelsea
Bearjones' baby girl, Halie
Alberta Jones. Born on
September 12, 2005, at 11:55am,
weighing in at 8 pounds 4 ounces,
and 20 inches long. Mom and dad
were fortunate to have a good
night's sleep before the four
hour labor - the hospital barely
got the admission papers filled
out before she was born! Halie
was born without complications,
with a very good health report,
and Mom enjoyed the best Jacuzzi
bath ever known. Everyone, Mom,
Dad and baby are all still doing
very well and those of us who
have not already met Halie greatly
look forward to doing so.
on the subject of new arrivals,
our aerial Starr, Amanda,
has just anounced that she and
husband Alex are expecting a baby
this Spring. Congratulations!
Chautauquans have also been busy.
Jasper Patterson and Gavriel
De Tarr collaborated with
others to bring "D.O.A.: A Primer
for the Afterlife" to Portland's
Tribe Theatre, September 2nd-17th.
Several Chautauquans attended
performances and reported the
show provided an intriguing story,
which was funny, sad, poignant
...and a bit twisted.