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Thursday, July 22, 2004

The Ceili That Wouldn't Die

So yesterday, Matt and Paul posted about the ceili on the plaza, and a storm of conversation started on Live Journal. I was convinced enough to right a quick email to the CEO of the Los Altos Village Association. It said:

"Dear Ted, et al.,

"For the past four months, I've been the organizer for a ceili at the St. Steven's Green Pub in Los Altos. It's been going really well. Every week, about 20-30 dancers come out to take lessons from 7-9 and then the musicians start up and there's open dancing to live music (led by Matt Mazurak) from 9-11. Or at least, there was.

"Last night we arrived at the pub a little before seven and found it closed. Permanently. I called the manager and he said they made the decision on Saturday and he was terribly sorry he'd forgotten to call me. With 16 people standing around, we made a snap decision to have a little farewell ceili on the plaza at State and Main until the police stopped by and told us to go home. Only, they never did that. We danced to live music until 9:30, and then danced a little more to CD recordings while the band packed up. The 16 mushroomed to 25  (even after calling the non-locals to say not to come out), plus we had several passers-by stop in and watch, some of them even joining in. We had a group of six foreign businessmen stop by and watch for a while. They'd been on their way to the pub, found it closed, and followed my post-it note. The guy from Hong Kong said, "Hey, that's Irish music. I know this song. It's Whiskey in the Jar." It was really neat. Cars driving past would stop in the street and watch until another car came up and honked at them.The Chinese place and Pepino's both got an end of the evening boost in business from hungry/thirsty dancers, and we had a really nice time.

"I figured that was that. I'd start looking for a new venue next week. But then everyone has been talking online today about how great it was and how it would be nice to continue doing that through the summer at least. I reckon just showing up and plugging in probably shouldn't be done without a permit, so someone pointed me at your website. What would be involved in getting this formally allowed? Would Los Altos be interested in having dancers dancing on the square on Tuesday nights?  Is there another venue that might be interested in having us? All we need is a little bit of empty floor, and we're clearly not picky about what kind of floor (carpet, wood, concrete - we'll dance anywhere). We just want to keep dancing."

So today, Ted writes back and says:
"Hi Ammy, 

"I think it would be great to have you in the Community Plaza on Tuesdays!  
We can work on finding you a 'winter home' as well. Let"s talk more about this. 

"Best regards, Ted Garrett"

Okie dokie.



  • W00t! And again I say, w00t!

    By Blogger tshuma, at 10:48 AM  

  • Yeah Woot !

    Ask and ye shall receive !

    By Blogger Chris S, at 11:04 AM  

  • Woot!

    And did you work in PR in a former career (life)? Great job of talking up the Ceili and the effect (positive) we have on a community.


    By Blogger Zhaneel, at 2:11 PM  

  • The whole PR thing is kinda what I do for a living. Or at least one aspect of it. It's a good thing Stanford keeps paying me, 'cause dangit, I really couldn't begin to explain why I'd be a cool employee to anyone else.

    By Blogger Ammy, at 3:04 PM  

  • Oh that's so NEAT! Great job! I hope it comes together - I won't be able to make it out for a few weeks (guests/travel) but I can't wait!!

    By Blogger BlackSheep, at 3:10 PM  

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