[Elfsea] Library Demo Discussion...

Christine/Maria casadevaca at charter.net
Thu Sep 7 15:28:06 PDT 2006


Sir Tomas...

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....

In Service,
Maria


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