FAIRfest ’14 Hosts Mardi Grass Parade with New Orleans Rebirth Brass Band June 21 Other late breaking events announced

Fairfield – Preceding a performance by New Orleans style jazz band Rebirth, one of over 40 bands to appear at Fairfest this year, Fairfest will be host to a Mardi Gras style parade in which public participation is invited.

Come as you are or in Mardi Gras flair, with or without an instrument of your own choosing, or just be prepared to fall in behind Rebirth Brass Band as they form a parade line at the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center, 200 North Main Street, at 8:30 p.m. at the end of world music performers Bambu, marking their 20th year.

With their brass instruments in hand, Rebirth Brass Band will lead a public parade around the Fairfield square back to the 40-foot Fairfest main stage at the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center at 9 p.m. Next in line behind Rebirth in the Mardi Gras parade will be Fairfield’s own burlesque group, Fiesty Club Burlesque Troupe in family friendly attire, Iowa’s City Dana T. Brown horns, and  members the local Fairfield All-Star Big Band.

The thrill of a Mardi Gras-style parade being held locally is not lost on the Fairfield All Star Big Band. The All Stars will perform at Fairfest Sunday at 1 p.m. at the Sondheim Center for the Performing Arts in the FACC,  but frontman Rodger Gillaspie said many of the band members will play in the Mardi Gras parade behind Rebirth Saturday night.

Members of the Fairfield All Star Big Band include: On Trumpets Fred Hucke, Sue Hucke, Arvin Bogaards,  Trombones: Jim Edgeton, the band’s musical director, Tim Nelson, Claudia Sloat, Jim Wotherspoon, Saxes: Gary Roth, Sarah Flinspach, Ken Burns, Rodger Gillaspie and Mark McCabe. Piano, Leanne Edgeton, Bass, Gerry Runyon, Drums, Ken Norton, Eric Henderson, Vocalists, Mary Rose Kitch, Fred Hucke and Ken Burns.

Other Fairfest ’14 updates include the addition of radio personality Carmen Pratt of La Onda Latina, an all-Spanish speaking radio show on KTWA FM  in Ottumwa. Pratt will co-emcee in Spanish the Fairfest lineup on Friday, June 20 when Fairfest ’14 launches on the main stage at 4:30 p.m.  The Friday night lineup includes triple Grammy winners Los Lobos, of La Bamba fame, on their 40th anniversary tour; Cuban Salsa band Charanga Tropical, David Lindley, slide guitarist for Jackson Browne and the Mike Dillon band of New Orleans.  

In  it’s second year as a music extravaganza, Fairfest ’14 continues with an enormous lineup of 35 more national, regional and local headliners rounding out the playbill from noon to 11 p.m. on Saturday and again Sunday noon until 9 p.m.

New this year, Fairfest ’14 includes a beverage garden, and an after-hours component with jam sessions of performances at Fairfield pubs and eateries including the new Arbor Bar at the Seasonal Gardens Restaurant, Café Paradiso and the Red Rock Restaurant. All peformances are listed at fairfestiowa.com.

Non-musical events also round out the playbill for Fairfest ’14. Those recently added events include:  

  • Author Bruce Hopkins Book talk & signing. Environmentalist discusses importance of sense-of-place in writing and life. Saturday, June 21, 10-11 AM. Fairfield Arts & Convention Center classroom.
  • Author Beth Howard "From Blog to Book." NYT best-selling author helps writers craft action plans for turning blog posts into books. Saturday, June 21, 11-noon. Fairfield Arts & Convention Center classroom.
  • Author Jeanette Hopkins Children's story time with juggling, singing & dancing. Storyboarding demonstration. Parents welcome! Saturday, June 21, 2-3 PM. Fairfield Public Library (meeting room).
  • FAIRfest Write-In Quiet time for people to work individually on writing or drawing projects. Sunday, June 22, 10 AM - 12:30 PM. Earth & Water Tea Lounge & Pottery Shop.

All events, times and locations are listed at fairfestiowa.com

Contact Jean Greco 641-455-9142; jgreco@rgcs.us