On December 17, 2016, Bob L Redford, co-founder and President of the Walnut Valley Association, passed away. Funeral was held on Thursday, December 22nd. I can think of no better way of paying tribute to Bob than what Richard Crowson depicted in his drawing as shown here:
On July 28, 2017 another stalwart of the WVF passed away. Robert L Flottman developed a love for the Festival. “The Avenue of Flags is the legacy of this man who wants the world to know the Walnut Valley Festival is for everyone. In 1995 Bob Flottman had a thought that turned into a dream and that dream became reality in 1996. At the 25th Festival, the Avenue of Flags began with seven flags lining the entrance of the Fairgrounds. The 26th Festival saw the number of flags increase to thirty, and by the 30th Festival, the flags from all 50 states were flying, meaning someone from each state had attended the Festival. Today, all 50 states plus 50 foreign countries are majestically represented. Bob Flottman, his wife Sam, his granddaughters Sheridon & Sierra Flottman, made it a family affair to prepare the grounds and flags for display each September. They take a great deal of pride in the colorful contribution of the impressive display, welcoming the travelers home to the Walnut Valley Festival. Now a crew of others, hand-picked by Bob, proudly carry on the tradition started by one man’s dream. Thank you Bob Flottman and crew for the Avenue of Flags legacy.”
The Festival says a big THANK YOU to Paulette Rush, Jane Laughlin and Mike Flynn. It is with gratitude that we wish Paulette, Jane and Mike retirements that will be filled with joy, good health, and continued trips to the Festival that they helped to create. Paulette was the first face you saw as you entered WVA Headquarters in down town Winfield. Jane was the familiar face to all the performers that passes over the WVA Stages for almost a quarter century. Mike was the ultimate emcee for Stage 1. THANK YOU and you will always be a part of the Festival Family!
19th Annual Riverat Band Scramble and Costume Contest -Wednesday, Sept, 13, 2017
If you're coming to San Ratcisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair, man. We're in the middle of the Age of Ratquarius. When will we ever learn, when will we ever learn? Turn on, tune in and drop out of the regular grind. Join the Ratstock generation for a groovy Band Scramble in costume, as a volunteer, musician, entertainer or attendee. Can you dig it? Share in the atmosphere of love and harmony where nothing but good vibes abound.
Bring your far out friends and join us at Haight Ratsbury under the Riverat parachute in the west end of the Pecan Grove for love, music, dress-up and hilarity. This chute is your chute, this chute is our chute. By the Walnut River at the town of Winfield. In the grove of pecans, by the running waters, this chute is hung for you and me. So, don your favorite hippy look or peace rally style and volunteer or attend. Bring yourself, your instruments, talents and creativity to join in the journey.
If you're a Grinner, please dress-up! Bring what you need to be comfortable. Grinners select the Costume Contest winners and the People's Choice Band Scramble winners. Come support exuberance by casting your vote. Anyone can be in the Costume Contest, see categories below. Costume Contest winners receive a special prize button. This is an all acoustic contest so come early, sit close enough to hear and be amused. It’ll be a gas. You're in for much Riverat laughter and levity, so come get in the groove in the grove.
If you like being part of the scene, register to be a judge or assistant. Complete and deposit an entry form in the registration can at Haight Ratsbury. Please bring what you need to stay comfortable. You'll receive a special button. If you're a Picker, singer or otherwise musically inclined, register from NOW until 10:30 AM, Wednesday the 13th and attend the 11 AM band selection and orientation. Bands are judged on several things including costuming, theme presentation and creating songs relative to The Summer of Love, Peace and Understanding theme or Rodentia in general. Each band plays 2 songs. Participants, 1st, 2nd, 3rd Place, Rodentia Award and People’s Choice will receive special prize buttons.
REGISTER! Complete and deposit an entry form at Haight Ratsbury (the Riverat parachute), at the west end of the Golden Pecan Park. Musicians, judges and assistants register from NOW until 10:30 AM, Wednesday the 13th. Musicians may specify any acoustic instrument as well as voice.
11:00 AM – ALL REGISTERED MUSICIANS, JUDGES AND ASSISTANTS MUST BE PRESENT! Names will be drawn to form the bands. Musicians will meet their band members, select a band name, select a spokesperson and practice, practice, practice. Please be on time.
1:00 PM – ALL JUDGES AND ASSISTANTS GATHER UNDER THE PARACHUTE! We'll explain the judging criteria, set up the judging area and juggle some paperwork. Please bring a chair and everything you need to make yourself comfortable.
2:00 PM – BAND SCRAMBLE BEGINS! Each band's spokesperson draws a number from a hat. Bands play in sequence of the number drawn and the scramble begins.
6:00 PM – OPEN STAGE 5! Winners of the Costume Contest will be recognized and First, Second & Third Place Bands, People's Choice and Rodentia winners will perform.
COSTUME CONTEST Contests will occur between Band Scramble acts. All winners are selected by the audience and will receive a special button. Anyone can be in the Costume Contest. Sock it to us Baby! This year's categories are: Best Simon and/or Ratfunkle (Simon & Garfunkel), Best Mama or Poppa Rat (Mama’s and the Papa’s), Best Ratty Hippy Dude/Ratty Hippy Chick, Best Peace Sign, Best Bellbottoms, Best Flower Child, Best Tie Dye Gal, Best Tie Dye Guy, Best Ratlo Guthrie (Arlo Guthrie), Best Jumpin' Rat Flash, Best Beratle (Beatle or Beatles), Best Janis Ratlon (Janis Joplin), Best Joan Ratez (Joan Baez), Best Mr. Tamborine Rat, Oldest Winfield Shirt, Oldest Tie-dyed Winfield Shirt, Best Other, Best of the Best.
“A new concept of celebration beneath the human underground must emerge, become conscious and be shared, so a ratvolution can be formed with a ratissance of compassion, awareness, and love, and the revelation of unity for all mankind.” The San Ratcisco Oracle '67