Wonder Valley Arts

Homestead Show 'n Tell

"Homestead Show ‘n Tell" at The Palms

The Homestead Show ‘n Tell was a community-sharing visual exhibition as well as an Open Stage open to anyone with artwork that concerns, includes, or is inspired by the homestead cabins of the Hi-Desert.

VISUAL EXHIBITION: Visual exhibition of the many sides of the homestead cabins, from derelict to home-sweet-home, on view daily except Tuesdays at The Palms Restaurant through March 2008. The show was open to everyone to submit a piece so long as it concerned, included, or was inspired by the homestead cabins.

RECEPTION AND OPEN STAGE: The artists reception and Open Stage at The Palms on February 23, 2008, was a multi-dimension event to be remembered; proprietress Laura Sibley called it “the most amazing event ever in the history of The Palms!” With cracker-cabin crafts, poets and singers, rocking’ bands, and Laura’s lasagna, it was Wonder Valley at its unpredictable finest.

For the artists reception at 2 p.m. the ever-resourceful Ellie Greenwood cooked up a cabin cake, and in keeping with her philosophy that the best way to handle humans is treat them like they’re 2 years old she set up a table with graham crackers, various candies, and icing for mortar and let the kids and grown-ups get to building their own cabins. The results were outstanding, creating a lilliputian desert community complete with outhouses. Where are they now? Palms proprietress Laura Sibley says, “In a very good case of art imitating life, first the doors went and then the roof [fell] until all that is left is the gum drop driveway.”

The Open Stage powered up at 5 p.m., with each participant assigned 12 minutes and the stipulation that their work must concern, include, or be inspired by the homestead cabins. The strategies and perspectives were varied and numerous, the sense of mutual recognition of our community and shared experience was sweet, sometimes funny and satisfying in a whole new way.

Brave participants included: Carl Peter Ripaldi, poetry; Dean Chamberlain, music; Marilyn Collier, fiction (read by Nancy Knight); Susan Eiden and crew, historic journal; Lori Weingartner, poetry; Russ Kohn, poetry; Ellen Monroe (The Woodpecker), fiction; Nancy Knight, fiction; and Gaither Drake, music. As well, Cathy Allen and Ellie Greenwood gave a reprise of their performances from the Homestead Obsession opener.

Blowing it up and closing it down, legendary Palms open-mic impresario Jeff Hafler hosted a super set of Wonder Valley’s favorite hit makers: Palms sweethearts The Sibleys, with Laura magically transforming from kitchen queen to Princess in Pink; Shari Elf and her Fairy Elf Band bringing down the house with sing-a longs to “Home on the Range” and “You Are My Sunshine”; The Hafler Duo bringing on spring by adding the rain; and simply right-on rockin’ blues from the Wonder Valley Extraordinaire!

We love our homestead cabins.

©2008 Doug Storm

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