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Before the parade passes by

June 11, 2014

Wow. June is already slipping by. It fascinates me that while the winter months seem to drag on forever, the warmer weeks fly by at a breakneck pace that is dizzying. Granted, there is more to see and do between spring and fall than at other times, but still... wow.

Now that concert season is upon us, I have to pace myself when it comes to Bethel Woods (www.bethelwoodscenter.org). Last week’s opening show was exciting, which may have set me up for a fall, since the triple-crown performance of Kaycee Musgraves, Alison Krause and Willie Nelson this past Sunday was a bit of a letdown. Going in, I was prepared for the best of the best, but since Musgraves is still a bit green, her performance was somewhat lackluster. Her voice is sweet, but she’s still missing the wow factor, from my vantage point. She expressed that she was thrilled to be playing the venue, but I got the impression that many folks were there to catch multi-award-winning Krause, who has a rabid following. In fact, after Krause performed, a lot of people took off before the main event—Mr. Willie Nelson—who, at 81, lacked (IMHO) a bit of spark himself. To be sure, Nelson is an icon, but following Krause’s high-energy brand of bluegrass fiddle prowess, the place thinned out. Truth be told, I was a teeny bit bored, but chalked it up to exhaustion, since I had been to the 18th annual Tractor Parade in Callicoon, NY prior to the concert in Bethel.

This particular cavalcade is a perennial favorite, and the mob that showed up to cheer on the 300-plus tractors was (as always) beyond enthusiastic. The parade route (www.visitcallicoon.com) was lined with onlookers, many of whom make a day of it, with a pancake breakfast, a visit to the farmers’ market, the grand-daddy of river-town parades and a chicken barbeque following the smoky, smelly, good ole time that residents and visitors look forward to all year long. The River Reporter’s Amanda Reed and I took scads of photos and they can be viewed, shared and tagged at www.facebook.com/theriverreporter.