Linda reports ... Edited and posted by Bill
Dallas International Guitar Festival
The Guitar Show is a fun show and a wonderful way to spend a beautiful spring weekend. It literally takes one back to younger years and day's gone by.
This year marked the 35th anniversary of the festival, which Jimmy Wallace and his family have been promotors/managers of since the start. The show brings together musicians, guitar makers, collectors, celebrities and enthusiasts under one roof and on four music stages. This dynamic group of personalities creates so much intrigue when they visit the Straydog booth, which Jimmy so graciously provides to Straydog at no cost.
In addition to a monumental year, there was a quiet time as the show paid tribute to Bugs Henderson, a legendary Texas guitarist, who passed on earlier this year. Acknowledgement of Bugs' accolades in the music world was topped off with the naming of the large outdoor stage in his honor.
We were so happy to share our weekend with volunteer's Lana Isom, Todd Carr, and Glenda Hume. These gracious longtime supporters shared the Straydog history and mission with many curious visitors and assisted in caring for the doggies we dog along. A very special thank you to our volunteers for sharing your day with us and the many visitors.
On our "center stage" (in front of our Straydog booth) we had "star musicians" Tuffy-dog and Big Pup Natasha on Saturday.
Sunday "show stoppers" included Pudge and upcoming superstar Ike, a natural for attending events. It is exciting to announce that we provided adoption applications and/or directions on adoption process on all four of the attending dogs during the weekend. Now let's keep our fingers crossed that good will come of this!
I speak for David, Tom and myself when I say probably the most interesting part of attending these shows involves responses and the outpouring of kindness and generosity from the dog lovers who visit our booth. I thought it would be interesting to share with you a few of the highlights:
* Long time contributor and supporter Anita Tipping-Wheeler and her husband stopped by. They spent about 30 minutes with us and helped to spread word of the good deeds of Straydog with several visitors.
Tom Arnold, Anita Tipping-Wheeler (longtime Straydog supporter), Linda Arnold and David Rentz.
* There was a wonderful gentleman who is looking for a dog as soon as he marks his 5th year of recovery from brain cancer. He shared his story of the tragedy and his outlook on life. He then made a donation.
* We met all four members of a local band who are willing to perform for Straydog at a fundraiser for free. How cool is that?! Look for more updates coming soon.
* Rick Derringer (world recognized musician known for such songs as "Hang on Sloopy" and "Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo" as well as playing on albums with Johnny Winter, Edgar Winter, Alice Cooper, Richie Havens, Todd Rundgren and Steely Dan) stopped by our booth and posed for a picture with our rescue Natasha, and volunteer Todd. Later that day Rick spent some time with Straydog's Special Event Team learning more about Straydog and our mission. On Sunday I provided Rick with an official Straydog hat in hopes that he will wear it on his next "gig." (If you don't recognize these song titles you are much younger than me!)
Famous rock guitarist, Rick Derringer, stands next to Pup Natasha,
held by Straydog Volunteer Todd Carr on Saturday.
* Young Jennifer spent time sharing her story about teaching music as her family has a studio in the Plano area. She then made a donation.
* The leader of Garland Boy Scout Troop 1989 stopped by and was so intrigued with our mission that they have volunteered to help with a service project.
* Another longtime supporter was visiting the Guitar Show, and she dropped by to visit with us. During our conversations she shared that she was a Sales Manager for a vitamin and supplement supplier and was going to work with Straydog to get us supplements at a discounted price! What a help that would be.
* One of our visitor's had met us at the Golf Show in 2011. She had not entered her name to receive our newsletters but was excited to get a copy of our latest newsletter. On the second day she re-visited the booth, signed up and said she would like to participate with our golf tournament next October. She also made a donation.
* A very nice young woman and her 1-month-old baby stopped by our booth while her husband was guitar shopping. She is an heavy participant with the Dallas SPCA and chaired the recent fundraiser by that organization to finance their new building. She has now volunteered to assist us as a resource in our upcoming fundraising efforts.
* Doug, a gentleman who was new to Straydog, visited on Saturday, and he expressed an interest in assisting Straydog to have a private label with a winery as he is a member of the Texas Winery Association. He walked away and returned about 30 minutes later to make a donation.
* During the entire show, there was a wonderful police officer who spent his free time at our booth telling us about the dream he and his wife share, which will come true in about two years, which is to retire to their land in South Carolina and create a dog rescue. The more he learned of Straydog the more he wants to model their facility after a proven caring and loving source! He plans to visit Straydog early this summer. He too made a donation.
* A gentleman walked up from the middle of the huge crowd at the show. He said he was making the donation in memory of his wife, who had passed on in January. He said she would have loved to know about Straydog as she was an animal lover and advocate. How thoughtful and touching.
* The group of exhibitor's from Spain who attend this show annually to purchase quality guitars and ship to their shop in Spain had their staging area located across from Straydog, and they would spend off-and-on minutes visiting with us and our attending dogs. They were continually dropping money into our donation jar.
I could go on and on talking about our many visitors. Each and every conversation touched us in a different way. Whether they made a donation or not isn't the important thing, but rather that they too have a sincere concern for homeless dogs and appreciate so much knowing there are organizations out there like Straydog.
Most of the exhibitors and performing talent at some time passed by our booth and each one would reach down and hug or pet our dogs or get a lick (kiss) from one of them, expressing how they either wished they could have a pet but couldn't because of not being at home enough, or how much they missed their pet who was at home being cared for by a family member. One exhibitor actually said the Straydog booth helped him get through the weekend!
Please let us know if you can share in some of these types of moments as we will be participating in the 20th Annual Wildflower Celebration in Richardson the weekend of May 18-20! If this is anything like last year's event it will prove to be dynamite as well!