Lori’s Best of the Bayou Update-10/15/2012

Hello readers, and Happy October!  I must say this is one of my favorite months of the year, perhaps even more now that Year One of Best of the Bayou is done!  (Insert Smiley Face here.)  I’m sure you all know by now that our inaugural weekend was inundated with rain and high wind, at times.  Unfortunately, as we know all too well in South Louisiana, weather is unpredictable and uncontrollable.  I speak for the Chamber–staff and executive board, when I say we worked as hard as we could under the circumstances and are most grateful to our sponsors, vendors, volunteers—all of “Team Festival,” for being weather warriors!  We are all also extremely thankful to everyone who attended BOB Fest in spite of the weather.  Whether you came out for the music, be it to listen to your favorite bands or check out new ones, eat some grub from the dozen-plus food vendors, or to simply hang out with friends and family, most of the remarks and feedback we’ve received from revelers has been positive.  We want nothing more than for BOB to be an enjoyable and entertaining experience year after year!

On that note, festival-planning is a full-time job, and now preparations begin for our sophomore event in 2013.  As of press time, I cannot tell you to “save the date.”  The first phase of 2013 planning is a comprehensive review of 2012, which includes dates of the event.  We will, of course, announce the dates when they are confirmed, whether or not they change.

Our analysis of this year’s event includes a survey of the food vendors, as well as arts-and–crafters, in order to try to improve conditions for them.  (Does anyone have a magic weather wand?)  Part of this process also includes meetings with key stakeholders and parish officials to gain a detailed perspective on logistics, marketing and public relations, and all other important festival matters.  I’m not ashamed to say that I’m not perfect, nor is everyone that jumped aboard the BOB Fest “crazy train” this year, but we certainly gave it our all amidst an overwhelming timeline.  Moving forward, we certainly plan to rectify what is in our power to change.  If you’d like to share your thoughts on BOB Fest 2012, you can email us at info@bestofthebayou.org, post to our Facebook wall, even send us a tweet.

As previously announced on our website and Facebook, Andrè Brunet of Peoples Drug Store in Downtown Houma is the proud recipient of the original festival canvas, painted by Susan Shaffer of Schriever.  The painting was auctioned via silent auction during the festival.  If you didn’t get the chance to scoop up your poster of the painting at the festival, you can call the Chamber office at 985-876-5600 to reserve a copy.  Posters are $15 and will be available until they are sold out.  Tee-shirts in both men and women’s sizes are also still available for $10.  Sales from festival merchandise go directly to Best of the Bayou, a 501c3 non-profit foundation.

If you would like to help Best of the Bayou 2013 by being a corporate donor or Friend of the Festival, or rather donate your time as a committee member or general volunteer, please let us know.  We would love your help!  Until next time, thanks again to all of you who made this first festival year possible!