The We Heart Ukulele Festival was initiated to provide fun and educational experiences with the ukulele and to earn funding for future ukulele classes for children. The festival took place on February 12, 2012, and the plan is to always have the festival on the weekend close to St. Valentine’s Day in 2012. News releases were sent to Neal Dow, Rosedale, Parkview, Chapman, Nord Country, and Wildflower schools in an effort to reach children who have already expressed an interest in the ukulele. We received several inquiries on our e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org. A parent was required to attend with the child. So our learning center for the children had many parents and children as well as some older folks who had never played the ukulele. You may have seen the front page of the ER on 13 February with a photo of one of the attending children! Our total attendance was about 130 people, including about 15 children. One of the children won a red ukulele on the Uke Walk. Others won videos and cds and uke leashes. Thank you Uke Leash for the donations!
The Uke Walk…..let’s talk about that! Six red ukes were given by private donors and Kala Brand Ukes donated an instrument too. The grand prize, a Mele Ukulele, was donated by David Vallelunga, the able and talented teacher of the children’s beginning group. Michelle Klassy, a beginning player, won the coveted ukulele. Congratulations to her.
The evening concert featured local talented performers who include ukulele among their instruments. Kyle and Carrie Williams, Ma Muse and Mandalyn May, Eric Stetson, Eileen Lapides, Bill Unger, and Scott Itamura were among the performers.
Thank you supporters: Kani Ka Pila, Uke Leash, Music Connection, Kala Brand Ukuleles, First Impressions Sign Co, Sam Beasley and Suzanne Lorenz, Cafe Flo, T Bar & Fusion Cafe, Chico Mobile Air & Auto Repair, Harrison Daley Wright Accountancy, Bustolini’s Deli, Vibe Salon, Richard Donner and Matt Donner of Asset Mangagement Group, Trinity Methodist Church, and the We Heart Ukulele Event Committee. Thank you Matthew Morgan for sharing the photographs.