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SPOTLIGHT
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The good, the bad, the windy

Published on -6/16/2014, 3:04 PM

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By Gordon D. Fiedler Jr.

The Salina Journal

The tents are struck, the bands have departed, the art is crated and the food is on ice for another year. The 2014 edition of the Smoky Hill River Festival is in the box. Howling winds, while a nuisance to many this weekend, provided the festival judges with a perfect excuse to over-graze to prevent taking flight like the unmoored umbrella that soared over the Stein Stage crowd Saturday afternoon.

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The tents are struck, the bands have departed, the art is crated and the food is on ice for another year. The 2014 edition of the Smoky Hill River Festival is in the box. Howling winds, while a nuisance to many this weekend, provided the festival judges with a perfect excuse to over-graze to prevent taking flight like the unmoored umbrella that soared over the Stein Stage crowd Saturday afternoon.

The after-hour rains kept the festival engine humming and the mud manufacturing at peak production. But now that the beignets are gone, the bodacious burritos have rolled away, and frozen cheesecakes on sticks didn't stick around, and with the only damp cedar chips to whet appetites, it's time to total the winners and losers. And the results just released are:

See more Festival Stories, Photos and Videos at: www.salina.com/SmokyHillRiverFestival

-- Sophomore Humor Award -- To young festival- goers who thought a performance of T & A was something other than the fine musicianship of Tom Hall and Alice Spencer.

-- Gone with the Wind Award -- To artist Joshua Short, whose installation, "Going to Church," was apparently raptured sometime during the weekend. Breaking Wind Award -- To celebrants of a certain size who used their generous girth to help shield fellow festivalites from Saturday's gale.

-- Earth, Wind and Fire Award -- To diehard festival patrons who endured a thorough sand-blasting by the grid-laden gusts and high heat Saturday. Flowering Onion Award -- To innovative festival fans who disguised their need for showers with a popular festival good.

-- Blown Over by the Festival Award -- To Festival volunteer, the Rev. Steve Kmetz, who was manning the South Street admissions booth Saturday afternoon, when it was, well, blown over.

-- Beignet Award -- To the food booth, The Baker Man, for introducing Frenchified New Orleans fry bread to the festival menu.

-- Bengay Award -- To limping Festival Fitness Five runners who learned Saturday afternoon they didn't train hard enough for Saturday morning's event.

-- Simplified Award -- To members of Saturday night's headliner, "Simplified," who made their wildly popular performance look easy.

-- Liquefied Award -- To the parks department personnel who have to deal with the mud and mire come Monday.

-- Mortified Award -- To one of the official festival judges, who was judging at Stage II when, using poor judgement, sat in someone's spilled lemonade.

-- Sanctified Award -- To bluesman Big Jim Adam for bringing down a blessing on the festival during his invigorating gospel set Sunday morning.

(c)2014 The Salina Journal

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