[Elfsea] Library Demo Discussion...
casadevaca at charter.net
Thu Sep 7 15:28:06 PDT 2006
What can I say about this discussion, but Vivat! That was very well said
and I agree with you whole heartedly.
I'm beginning to wonder if the library feels we are performers rather
than historical educators. When I was Hospitaler for Elfsea, Arlington
only wanted us there to educate the public on daily life during our
period of study. Since stepping down, I have seen an alarming increase
in the demand for entertainment and not education....not just with
Arlington but with all demo opportunities that have other groups have
asked me and other hospitalers in the local area. I find this to be
frustrating and sad. This is the main reason I have not attended demos
of late. I love talking about the virtues and fun to be had in the
Society (especially parents with children) and I love showing people my
art and telling them the history of it, but I just refuse to be just
entertainment. I think, too, this is why there are many that refuse to
come to demos anymore.
I know this all sounds harsh and maybe it is.....but since this trend
has increased it makes me wonder if we should even spend the time and
the effort doing the small demos and just concentrate on the larger
demos? Even doing the Highland Games and North Texas Irish Festival and
having all those people come by the booths at both of these events, we
might get 6-12 new members. Yeah, doing the small demos are easier to
pull together, but they still take as much time and energy per
individual person but they just don't draw the new members like the 2
larger events. Also, these 2 venues draw people who are more open
minded to joining recreationist societies. Whereas, people who come to
libraries are really there to check out books (or do research) and are
more apt to see us as entertainment for their children while they run in
and do their research or check out their books...and we then become a
babysitting service of sorts.
But these are my 2 cents....
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