Previously we took a look back at the NABO Pilota Finals in Bakersfield and Udaleku 2011 in San Francisco and now some highlights from NABO's last two summer events: the Convention in Buffalo & Kantari Eguna in Gardnerville.
This story has
to begin with two big thank-yous:
to the Basque club of Buffalo for hosting a marvelous Convention/festival weekend
to the Basque club of Gardnerville for hosting another great Kantari Eguna
Hosts such as these make NABO go so all of us can enjoy!
|2011 Convention: Buffalo, WY|
The slopes of the Big Horn Mountains (and they are big with peaks that rise above 13,000 feet/4,000meters!) in Buffalo, Wyoming served as the locale for this year's NABO Convention hosted by the Big Horn Basque Club. And what a high-flying weekend it was! One of the most distinguishing elements was the level of community involvement. The town population is around 4,500, but on Saturday of the festival they ran out of wrist entry bracelets after selling 5,000 and they had to start marking hands. Folks--Basques and non-Basques--came from all around.
|The Convention meeting was held at the local Hampton Inn & Suites that made it clear outside where Basques could gather. Delegates re-elected Valerie Arrechea as President, and Grace Mainvil as Treasurer. (Photos Euskalkultura.com)|
There were so many good things going on with great music, food & company, but a special note of recognition has to go to the Big Horn club for putting together one of the best picnic booklets ever. It was both informative and flashy in an all-color format. Check out some excerpts at Buffalo 2011 program excerpts (pdf).
2011 inaugural winners of NABO's
Fest contest) were:
San Francisco Basque Cultural Center
During the festival people were recognized for their extraordinary contributions to Basque culture above and beyond their own community, with NABO's Bizi Emankorra award. This year's recipients include Isidro Echeto (Winnemucca), Martin Goicoechea (Rock Springs), Kate Camino (Buffalo/Reno) & Victor Esain (Fresno).
One impressive moment during the Saturday morning parade through Buffalo was the local high school band dressed up and playing Basque music. Again, the whole community was throwing in for the festival.
music for dancing in Buffalo
highlight, literally off the beaten path, is
the Monday following the festival when
members offer to take people up fishing into
the Big Horn Mountains. In the morning
all go off in different directions, then for
lunch everyone brings back their catch for a
big outdoor meal. It was a great time
to relax and meet the locals now that they
could take some time off themselves after a
hectic weekend of work at the festival.
They are great hosts--here's hoping that
they'll have us back again soon.
The weekend featured Buffalo's own "Zaharrer Segi" (Follow our Ancestors) Basque dance group performing. The club was celebrating 30 years, but Basques have been in Buffalo long before that time. Here's hoping that Basqueness will continue to thrive at the foot of the Big Horn Mountains!
|2011 Kantari Eguna: Buffalo, WY|
Every year NABO celebrates Kantari Eguna or "Day of the Basque Singer." This year it was hosted by the Mendiko Euskaldun Cluba of Gardnerville, NV in conjunction with their 30th anniversary. The event was held at the CVIC hall. The day was filled with Basque song, thanks to many who came out of the audience. NABO Basque song offerings
Kantari Eguna is an opportunity for people to come forward and share some of their favorite songs with the audience. The afternoon concert also featured dance performances by the visiting Reno "Zazpiak-Bat" group as well as the local group of young dancers which has been reborn! Some of the Gardnerville dance alumni also came back for this anniversary to do a special performance. There was also an Udaleku 2011 reunion and they too sang a song together.
Gardnerville's Kantari Eguna brought in some outside talent, including Boise's "Amuma Says No" band for dancing and Bakersfield's Martin Etchemendy as M.C.
Gardnerville's annual event is held at the CVIC hall. They have been rotating with the Rocklin Basque Club in hosting this annual NABO event.