Letter writer: Safety is first concern at Shindig

Graphic by Lori Deaton

The Folk Heritage Committee gives area performers important recognition of their talents in preserving our Southern Appalachian heritage for over 50 years now at the Shindig and 89 years at the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival. The Shindig on the Green and Mountain Dance and Folk Festival demonstrates quality, authentic, traditional music and dance presented to thousands of individuals, stimulating awareness and appreciation for the musical and cultural heritage Western North Carolina holds.

[Regarding the letter, “Shindig on the Green Calls for Dancing” in this issue of Xpress], the committee has received two letters from this same individual. We have responded to both letters promptly, one in August of 2015 and the other in May of 2016. Now again, we are addressing her concerns. The inevitable — children have been disruptive in the past, without proper supervision of parents. We have requested time and again to please keep them off the stage, steps and columns.

Musicians on stage have been interrupted during performances to catch a child falling off the stairway. The children [were] climbing up and around the columns, running, jumping, tripping on electrical cords. Also, very disruptive to the audience and to the musicians during performances.

Safety is always our first deepest concern. We had repeated requests of the audience to “please calm the children.” Two committee member tried to stand on each side, and the parents were rude because we would ask, “Please don’t get up there” or “no climbing,” etc. The police assisted when requested, but attention is needed [for] other … downtown issues.

We implemented a pattern to alleviate audience use of the stairs. There is a dancing area at the right of the stage (looking upon it). This wonderful freestyle dancing area is huge. It doesn’t disrupt the bands, nor the audience.

And it keeps our audience safe, out of harm’s way.

— Loretta Freeman
Chair, Folk Heritage Committee


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Letters
We want to hear from you! Send your letters and commentary to letters@mountainx.com

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

3 thoughts on “Letter writer: Safety is first concern at Shindig

  1. boatrocker

    Good golly, unattended kids misbehaving in public and parents nowhere to be found?

    No, not ever, ever in Asheville! Say it ain’t so!

    And musicians having to parent (verb) while performing onstage for parents (noun) who will not?

    Affluenza (noun)- social disease where parents will not parent, yet let kids run wild and then berate anyone who does.

    How dare anyone keep our kids safe! We from Affluenzastan demand that when we are in our home element, we are helicopters, yet as soon as we are with other adults and sip a few local yuppie microbrewed beers, we become free range Naaaaaaaaaamaste parents. It’s alllll good.
    Until our kids get hurt and we threaten everyone with litigious BS.

    Hmmmmm, and NC can’t find any new teachers to teach our kids why again?
    Besides the gutting of our education system and demonization of the ‘en loco parentis’ ideal, that is.

    Trump’s kids’ nannies might be able to enlighten us, if not for them being forced to sign non disclosure agreements.

    Ayn Rand bless those gated communities, white flight private schools and Latino nannies while mommy and daddy (for now until they find a second marriage for $) sip microbrewed beers after a hot yoga session. while checking their stock portfolio on the phone.

  2. Murphy

    LOL… Biltmore Esatte has concerts where folks pay hundreds of dollars to attend and are required to remain seated or risk being asked to leave (or escorted off the property)… I’ll bet Georgie is rolling over in his crypt.

    SOTD apparently also is “no fun allowed”… dancing, to music, in public, much less by “unattended” children imagine that in the cesspool of sin… say it isn’t so – but it is.

  3. boatrocker

    I own the fact that I cannot dance and do not ever care to. My body only moves like Steve Martin (King Tut) or the Elaine from Seinfeld dance. I make no apologies.

    Just the same, I think at least one other poster sees the jerkiness of letting your man puppies, cloggerspawn, homeschooled wunderkind (or children to some) run wild, especially on a stage for hard working pickers having to play and parent at the same time.
    It’s really difficult to do that and deliver a nice performance. That and as I said before, when your kid hurts themselves you the parents will scream “Lawsuit! Lawsuit!”. “No I won’t” you say, but yes you will.

    That is so not cool.
    Subdue the kids with a post sugarcrash like normal parents.
    High fructose corn syrup not only makes America great again,
    it also keeps them docile for never wanting to question why they’re learning to clog instead of buck dance.

    People- it is not- repeat not some sort of “Footloose” conspiracy to keep folks from dancing. Just don’t let your kids wreak havoc onstage with expensive instruments and sound equipment. Unless you’re cool with parents dropping off their kids at your place of work to act like
    the Tasmanian Devil. After buying them a double caffeinated latte and a puppy.

    As for the Biltmore’s Summer Concert Series, you could not ever pay me enough to dance to all the crappy 70’s bands that crash landed rock n roll radio the first time and country versions of ‘Murican Idol that play there. Way too many mid life crises going on there.

    Dance wherever the hell you wanna, but mind the band, instruments and equipment. If your kid breaks a bone, don’t sue for it.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.