They say the third time’s a charm. In the case of Hoover Hootenanny III : Hoovstock, they would most certainly be right! I’ve been in attendance to all three and this one by far is the one to beat. It could be that the Hoover Nation—Geoff and Tatiana Hoover, their three boys, Indy, Duke and Texas, as well as Marian Porges—is getting this thing down. Like a well oiled machine this one just churned out tons of fun, food, old and new friends and plenty of entertainment.
As soon as one is over, the plans for the next one begin. The first rule of Hootenanny is also the moto of the Hoover Nation, “Why do when you can over do!” This year that motto was certainly in evidence.
Geoff starts the process by naming the upcoming Hootenanny. I attended the first Hootenanny and somewhere in there ended up naming the the second Hooverpalooza. I was honored Geoff used the name. Hoovstock was Geoff’s name for Hootenanny III. Geoff already has a few ideas in the running for next year. But once the name is chosen, it’s time to create the logo, the banner, t-shirts and other branded doodads. And once the performance list is as finalized as it can be at a Hootenanny, Geoff designs and prints a poster for each performer. This year there were drinking cups with the Hoovstock 2012 daisy logo, as well as a flag with the same logo, flying in the front of the house to let everyone know they’d arrived. This year there were two t-shirts, which are gifted to everyone who performs. Plus every performer gets a copy of their Geoff designed poster. And dare I mention that the cost of all this is footed by Geoff, Tatiana, and Marian? Talk about selflessness! Thank you to you all!
Preparations start early and rightly so. It’s an extravaganza to behold! The week before the party, Geoff takes a week off from work. I can’t call it a vacation, because every moment he’s off, he’s working on something Hootenanny related. There is so much to coordinate! The grass must be cut and the yard cleaned, (thanks Indy, Duke & Texas) the stage built, lights hung (thanks Duke) the 2x6x12 and cinderblock benches put up. Drinks purchased and food ordered …. mmmm … Frank’s Deli sandwiches. There is so much to do. And the Hoover’s certainly take care of business!
Once the party gets started there is live entertainment, always starting with Geoff’s band, The Vinyl Junkies, after that, it’s up to the other performers, who want, to get up and do a set. Though this year there was a sign up sheet presided over by Geoff. Organization? Who’d a thunk! It made life easier too.
This year I got back together with my long time friend Fred Bennett, who was the drummer in my 1986 band The Human Element. We played a four song set of originals I wrote for the band, back in the day. I also broke Streno Hootenanny tradition and played electric guitar rather than an acoustic. As Geoff would remark, “… a man’s guitar!” Though I did do a two song acoustic set later in the evening. And thanks to Karen Bennett, Fred’s wife for attending and taking video of our set. You rank … full stop!
People come from all over the country for this party. Literally! The previous two years I traveled from Seattle to attend. Now that I live 6 blocks from Chez Hoover and the Hoover Nation … I didn’t have to travel that far. We did have attendees from Seattle this year, other than me. My good friends Alex & Nancy Solla traveled from Trumansburg, NY to be in attendance. Alex and I hadn’t seen each other in 15 years. So it was great to see him and introduce him all my old and new friends. My friend Dorothy Morrison came up from Westville, NJ with a friend. But that’s what this party is about. It ends up becoming this one huge extended family. And with Facebook, photos and video abound and are shared. This helps keep this extended family connected.
I’d like to thank Geoff, Tatiana, Indiana, Duke, Texas Hoover and Marian Porges for their hospitality, their generosity and their fortitude to make this colossal event happen. And I’d also like to thank all those who attend and perform. It wouldn’t be a Hootenanny without you! And for those yet to come … you’re missing the time of your life!
What follows are photos, video, etc of the stupendous event! Thanks again to the Hoover Nation for everything! You guys rock!