If you are a lover of the arts then you certainly shouldn’t miss what is probably the greatest free art show in the region when the 20th annual Three Rivers Art Festival is held this Saturday and Sunday in downtown Covington from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.
I got the inside scoop on the festival from Sarada Bonnett, the events coordinator for the sixth year in a row, when we sat down and chatted this past week.
You can read all the details about the festival in our front page story today in Tammany West. There are 200 artists from across the country who were chosen for the show that will pack the downtown streets of historic Covington this weekend.
Yes, I do say it is a “free” art show, but I doubt you will head home with the same amount of money in your bank account as when you showed up. The reason for that is due to the level of talent you are going to see, meaning the odds are you will purchase some kind of art before you head to the house.
I have noted many times that we have many truly outstanding artists in St. Tammany Parish. But did you know that only 11 were good enough to qualify for the Three Rivers Festival? That, in itself, shows you how good the talent is for the weekend show.
So if you want to view some incredible art from across the country then make sure to get to downtown Covington Saturday or Sunday for the show.
And don’t forget there is also free music, plenty of great food and drink available, and even a place for you to bring the kids to play. Festival organizers truly thought of everything so I suggest you cancel any other plans this weekend and pencil in a spot to visit what we call the “Three Rivers Explosion.”
There has been a lot of discussion in recent weeks and months about whether America “will survive” the very contentious presidential election that concluded on Tuesday.
I, for one, have no concerns about that and I received confirmation of that when I went to vote on Tuesday.
My family is certainly one that takes our voting privilege seriously and my wife particularly deserves the credit for leading the way in teaching our four children, and now our grandchildren, about the importance of voting.
My wife homeschooled our kids and made our political system a priority to teach about, but never more so than every four years when a presidential election came about.
Of course, this year’s election gave her more to talk about than ever and I could tell she enjoyed it all the way to the end.
If you wonder whether our kids or grandkids have a general awareness of the presidential election it was made very clear on Tuesday morning when my 4-year-old granddaughter, Reagan, got out of bed and said to her mom, “Oh, I really hope Donald Trump wins today!”
Yes, she heard lots of conversation about the election in the past days, especially when she was around my wife—the family leader when it comes to political awareness and news.
When we were ready to go vote on Tuesday my wife, as usual, made it as much a family affair as possible, depending who might be around our house at the time. This week it was like a voting party as my wife and I were joined by our 28-year-old daughter, while Reagan’s mom had to go to a different polling location so she took all three of her children with her.
As I stood in line at the polls I noticed something that gave me a good feeling. Many young voters were there—I mean young people as in early 20s. And I didn’t see their mom or dad dragging them to the polls.
I saw young parents with little kids, and even though the little ones couldn’t yet vote, it was setting a good example to them about the importance to go vote.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I am still bothered by the low percentage of people who take the time to register so they can vote and that is certainly something we need to consider.
I heard a recent conversation about that and learned something I never knew—some countries make it the law that you must go vote. Over 20 countries, including Australia, have a compulsory voting law and they actually get over 90 percent of the people to the polls! There is a minor fine for not voting, but apparently the simple requirement—something like a seat belt law—does make most people go to the polls.
I don’t see any reason we couldn’t do that here and I hope some congressmen will consider such a law. I hardly see a down side to it and it would be so great to see tremendous numbers of people in our country going to vote every time there is an election.
Kevin Chiri can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.