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West Stockbridge, Stockbridge, Lenox, MA – Wednesday, August 23, 2006

A good bit of the day was given to cleaning the buses really well. Then we finally pulled out toward the Berkshires. Our numbers had diminished. Our goal was to invite as many people as possible in the surrounding area of Cambridge, NY, to the festival there this coming Saturday. This will be the culmination of our East Coast Tour.

Our first stop was West Stockbridge, MA, a small, artsy town with the Housatonic River running through it. We parked our buses in a large lot behind the information booth and saddled up our musicians with their instruments. People were pulling into the parking lot right away, full of questions. Right off we met a man who used to live in Boston and loved our café there in Dorchester. We told him we wanted to have a café like that there in W. Stockbridge.
“Just the other day, I was telling a friend of mine that a café like yours would be perfect here in this town,” he told us.
“That’s been on my heart for thirty years,” I replied.
“Well, keep talking to the powers that be,” he said.
“That’s what we do,” I answered.

We walked through town playing music, smiling, waving at everyone we saw, and handing out invitations. The owner of a restaurant invited us to come play on his patio, which we did for a while. Then we headed back toward the buses. We made friends with a few shopkeepers and liked that town very much.

Next we rolled into famous Stockbridge, home of Alice’s Restaurant, Norman Rockwell, a haunt of men like James Taylor, etc. The town was virtually empty except for a few people sitting in the old rocking chairs on the porch of the Red Lion Inn. They (the people, not the rocking chairs) all waved as we drove by. We again paraded through town on foot, playing music, and handing out many invitations. Some people came and visited the buses, though they were parked a little ways down in front of Austin Riggs.

Then we headed for Lenox. Those streets looked empty, too. We parked on Main St. and soon the buses filled up with so many young people. In the process of looking for an old friend of mine, I made a new one who worked in the local icecream shop. He ended up buying icecream for everyone on the caravan. He was so kind. Peter met a girl who was the sister of his best friend he had gone to high school with in Pittsfield. He was so glad to be able to get in touch with him again.

It was very hard to leave there because we kept meeting so many more people, but we had to get to our campsite before it got too late.

More coming soon!!!

For more information contact eastcoast@merrymakerscaravan.org

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Merrymakers' Caravan