Happy Friday! Happy weekend!! Wow! What a fabulous weekend I had last weekend. If any of you, dear friends, lives near Fayetteville, NC and did not attend the Dogwood Festival , shame on you – you missed a great event! It was sooooo much fun. There were so many things to do and see and there were like a gazillion people there to share in the fun! I don’t know how I missed it last year. I guess I was still shy and not as aware of the goings on around me – I hate that it went on last year and I didn’t even know. I was intent on making up for it this year!
It all started Friday evening. I eased into it slowly as I didn’t realize how much fun I was going to have to pack into two and a half days. There were no pets allowed, but I met with the very nice people who organized the festival and explained that I was potty trained and would not make a mess. I showed them my rabies shot tag to prove I had been vaccinated, though I assured them I would not bite anyone. They told me to keep a low profile as to not upset anyone who wanted to bring their pets, but could not. I told them I would try, but I couldn’t guarantee anything… after all, I do enjoy an adventure!
My Mom and Dad’s place of work was one of the sponsors of the festival, so I had some special privileges which made it even more fun. Mom helped me stay unnoticed by putting me in her big purse. We went into the VIP tent and grabbed a nosh, then hung out back stage for the concert. I couldn’t believe how many people came to the concert! There were thousands!! I don’t think I’ve been in a crowd of so many people!! I really enjoyed the cute guy who was singing… Joe Nichols was his name. He and his band were very good. I started dancing around in Mom’s purse, which was uncomfortable for Mom. She told me I could get out and dance since we were backstage and not many people would see me. What fun – I danced and twirled and bobbed to the music. Then they started playing some rock sounding music and the guitars were wailing…. I’m not sure what possessed me, but before I realized what I was doing, I ran out on the stage and grabbed a guitar and started playing along with Joe and the band.
The crowd went wild! Joe was very nice and let me play with them for the whole song. When the song was over, Joe came over and gave me a hug, asked my name and thanked me for my help. He even said my name into the microphone – that sounded great! The crowd started chanting “Josie! Josie!” I took a bow and waved to the crowd. I liked being in the spotlight!! Mom came racing from the back of the stage to scoop me up and rush me to the back.
After that, the nice Dogwood Festival folks didn’t have to worry about anyone caring if I was there. I was now the performing cat that belonged at the festival. They told me I was free to roam as I pleased. By the time the concert was over and the beautiful fireworks had ended, it was time to go home. I couldn’t wait for Saturday so I could spend the whole day seeing what the festival had to offer.
Dad had to work most of Saturday, but Mom promised to take me back downtown so I could spend the day at the festival. I really didn’t know where to begin. Since I had spent most of the prior night at the concert venue, I thought I would go to the heart of downtown to see what was going on. There were ladies dressed in beautiful flowing skirts dancing in the street. I introduced myself and they recognized me from the picture of me performing with Joe that was in the newspaper! They said they would be honored if I would perform with them – they didn’t have to ask ME twice! They let me borrow a lovely skirt.
A large crowd gathered as we shook our hips and twirled. I spun and spun – I liked the way the skirt swirled out when I spun – and spun and spun until I became so dizzy I spun right into the crowd. Everyone cheered as they lifted me off the ground. We all had a good laugh and I thanked them for letting me join them. I knew there was lots more to do, so I said my goodbyes and headed to my next adventure.
There were so many performers along the downtown streets. My kind of people! I found some folks sitting around playing drums. I asked the pretty lady if I could try out one of the drums and she was delighted I was interested.
She laughed when I started beating my little paws on the drum. I was kind of shy at first, but once I got going I was making quite the loud noise! We sat around jamming on the drums – it was great. After a while my poor little paws were aching and unfortunately I had to stop. I said goodbye to my fellow drummers and headed out toward the carnival rides.
There were so many things to see and do. I walked passed so many cool vendors selling lots of neat stuff. There was a children’s section with face painting and a cool troupe of acrobatic pirates. I hung out and watched the pirates for a while and then I spied a ride I thought would be fun to try. I didn’t want to go on it alone, so I asked a little girl waiting in line if I could sit with her. She thought that was a great idea and we excitedly climbed aboard. It was fun. We laughed and screamed and had a good ol’ time!
When the ride was over we went to the back of the line to ride it again. We did that a couple of times until I decided there was more I needed to see.
I had heard there were princesses involved in the festival and I set out to meet these lucky ladies. I found them back over by the concert venue. They were hanging out with a cow. I figured if they liked a cow they were sure to like a cat. I walked over to them and they were very nice. They made me an honorary princess and gave me a lovely tiara.
Every one should have their picture taken with princesses and a cow at least once in their lifetime!
It was getting late and I was getting hungry. I wanted to sample some of the traditional festival fare. I headed back downtown and found just what I needed!
After having a nutritious dinner of cotton candy – yummmmmmmy!- I figured it was about time for the big Saturday night concert featuring Soul Asylum and Gin Blosssoms. My Dad was finished working and he met us at the stage. Soul Asylum was on first and they were great! We were hanging out backstage and I jumped at the chance to meet Soul Asylum. I am a big David Pirner fan. Anyone cool enough to date Winona Rider must be fun to meet. The Top Dogs of the festival asked me to join them for a picture. How cool was that!
David Pirner and I hit it off. He kept playing with my ear while the photographer was trying to take the picture. I made him laugh when I swatted him good one time! He told me he liked my hat and I told him I liked his. They couldn’t stay long as they had to leave to go home and I needed to get back to the stage anyway to watch the Gin Blossoms perform. Now it was Mom’s turn to sing and dance. She loved the Gin Blossoms. It was tough, but I controlled myself and stayed off the stage. I was exhausted by the time the concert was over and I was already falling asleep by the time Mom put me down in the car for the ride home.
Mom and Dad had stuff to do Sunday, so I didn’t get back to the festival. I heard it was another great day. Mom is always raving about the band Hot Sauce, and she was dissapointed she had to miss them Sunday afternoon. I can’t wait to go to it again next year. I just wish they would do something about the name. Dogwood? How about Catwood or Kittywood Festival. I’ll have to work on that!
I had left Malcolm in charge of things back at the house. I hadn’t gotten a chance to let anyone know I wasn’t going to be home most of the weekend, so I asked Malcolm to hang out in the yard to greet any of my friends that might drop by. Of course I had to leave him some food – he was supposed to share with anyone who stopped by. When I arrived home, I asked him if he had seen any of my friends. He just mumbled about feeling sick and having to go home. I hope he had help eating all that chicken – everyone I know must have dropped by – there were a lot of empty chicken buckets!
Hope your weekend was as good as mine. I’ll be in front of the television this Saturday for the Kentucky Derby. They’ll be lots of fabulous hats to see – I can’t wait!
Love & licks,