Zimfest News Blog

September and October Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the September 11th and October 9th meetings of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Important Zimfest Board Recruitment Message

Dear Zimfest Community,

Every month, the Zimfest Association Board meets to make decisions for our organization, and minutes from these meetings are posted to this blog. Although the board’s work is less visible at times than that of the annual organizing committee, it has the important role of creating policy for Zimfest, and guiding the festival into the future.

In the past, we have reached out to recruit new members, but this time I am writing with a more urgent request for new board members. As of right now, the board consists of 8 members, the minimum required per the rules for 501(c)(3) nonprofits incorporated in the state of Washington.

Several members of the board are leaving in the near future, due to family commitments, and we need to recruit more board members to fulfill this requirement. Furthermore, maintaining a range of tenures on the board, from new to old, is important for a healthy and sustainable organization.

As a board member, you would be expected to attend monthly meetings by Zoom at 6:30 pm Pacific time on the second Sunday of every month, and additionally take on tasks as required between board meetings. There is no formal tenure for board members, but in general we request a commitment to serve for 2 years, to be renewed as long as you have the energy to serve. More information can be found here.

If you are interested in serving as a board member, please reach out to , or me directly at . I’m also happy to schedule a phone call to go into more details, and answer any questions that you have.

Thank you,

Alex Weeks
Zimfest Association President

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August Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the August 14th meeting of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Donation Thanks and Survey Reminder

Greetings Zimfest community,

I write to gratefully announce the donation of $2225.99 from the HopeFirst Foundation to the Zimfest Association. HopeFirst was originally founded by Paul Mataruse, Kim Foley and Diana Chamrad and helped fund the US tour by Matemai in 2009 in addition to projects in Zimbabwe and The Gambia. HF President Kim Foley, having moved to Ohio, recently made the decision to close the books on the Foundation and donate the remaining proceeds to Zimfest. The funds will be earmarked for the ZA Travel Expense Fellowship program to assist Zimbabweans traveling to Zimfest in the future. Thank you Kim and HopeFirst!

The ZA Board, following the consensus of Village Meeting participants and the organizing committee, is in the process of  seeking a host for Zimfest 2023 that can accommodate a larger audience than this year’s venue (Skagit Fairgrounds and Lincoln Theatre). If you have not yet completed the Post-Festival Survey and have comments for us, please complete the survey before September 1.

Enjoy your summer!
Claire Jones, Festival Coordinator

Heron taking wing, by Carrie Rodlend

  We Took Flight at Zimfest 2022!

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May and June Board Meeting and Village Meeting Minutes

The Zimfest Association board of directors has posted minutes from the May 8th and June 12th board meetings and this year’s Village Meeting.

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Follow Up to Zimfest Site Evaluation Discussion

Hello all,

The Village Meeting this past Sunday featured a lot of lively feedback about Zimfest 2022 and discussion about where the next Zimfest might be. This post serves as a reminder that previous research on potential Zimfest sites is posted on the website on the ZA Documents page,  entitled Venues Researched as Potential Zimfest sites. I have made a few updates to it.

Several people interested in helping out by visiting sites not yet on the list requested we make the “Site Visit Checklist” available, and it is now downloadable as a pdf on the ZA Documents page.

The ZA Board next meets in August, so please write board[at]zimfest[dot]org if you find viable sites for us to consider. 

Thanks for your help and ideas!
Claire Jones, Festival Coordinator

Heron taking wing, by Carrie Rodlend

    We Took Flight at Zimfest 2022!

 

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Thank You and Village Meeting Reminder

Dear Zimfest Community,

I hope all of you have caught up a bit on sleep, and are travelling home safely.

First of all, thank you to the organizing committee, led by Claire Jones, who pulled off yet another successful festival.  Also, thank you to the numerous people who volunteered in person, and to the Skagit County Fairgrounds, Lincoln Theatre and Mount Vernon Senior Center for hosting us.

As a reminder, the village meeting is scheduled for this Sunday, July 3rd at 2pm Pacific time, by Zoom: Zoom meeting link.

We will discuss various topics including Zimfest Association business, feedback about this year’s festival, and most excitingly plant the seeds for the next Zimfest!

This festival is only possible because of volunteers like you, and the village meeting is a great way to get started if you are interested in helping to organize the next festival, or to serve on the board.

Thank you,
Alex Weeks
Zimfest Board President

Update: Zoom link has been added for the meeting above.

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Online Registration Ends June 17

Dear Zimfest People,

Thanks for continuing to sign up for workshops – we are happy to announce that no scheduled workshops will be cancelled due to low enrollment! Here are some bits of info to keep in mind as Zimfest 2022 draws ever nearer:

  • We have been waiting since early 2019 (pre-COVID) to announce that Zimfest has purchased five sets of hand drums, three in each set, for use in  workshops (see below). We thank Paul Hayes for making this happen through his generous donations! We have enough drums for students and teachers to use in all drum and percussion workshops. You are of course welcome to bring your own favorite drum if you prefer.
  • We have also been asked about whether students should bring mbira-s to mbira workshops. Enough loaner instruments will be available for teacher and students to use in the tuning called for in each workshop description. Again, you may prefer to bring your own instrument in the desired tuning.
  • Check out the Festival Highlights program, scheduled to take place at the Fairgrounds from 4 to 5 PM on Sunday June 26. This year’s highlights will feature classes taught by our three new Zimbabwean teachers: Danmore Kusaya (Hi Hi Hi Hello on Marimba), Salani Wamkanganise (Mhoro Nherera singing) and Blessing Chimanga (Tamba Jaiva Dance). There are still openings in the latter two classes, and you can join the fun of performing with your teacher and showing off what you’ve learned!
  • Final messages have been sent to the band contact person for each group performing at Zimfest 2022. These messages include instructions for vaccine verification for day stage performers (if you do not have your wristband showing vaccine verification when it’s time to perform, you will not be allowed onstage!) and evening performers. Additional information about the Lincoln Theatre and the the Zimfest masking policy has been sent to evening performers. If you have not seen this message, make sure your band contact person shares it with you!  For further information, write to concerts{at}zimfest{dot}org.
  • Notes on Important Dates: no further changes to workshop registrations may be made after June 15; online registration and volunteer signups end at 11 PM June 17. 

Zimfest Nested Drums from Remo

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Village Meeting Scheduled: Sunday, July 3rd at 2pm Pacific time

Dear Zimfest Community,

Please be advised that the Zimfest Association Board will host our annual Membership Meeting (better known as the Village Meeting) on Sunday July 3rd at 2pm Pacific time by Zoom. As this date approaches, we will post an invite link on the website, as well as update this blog post.

Update: Zoom meeting link.

Traditionally, this meeting is held at the festival, but we are holding it virtually this year in order to ensure that everyone can participate, even those who are not able to make it in person this year.

Thanks,
Alex Weeks
President, Zimfest Association Board

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Two Weeks Until Registration Closes

Greetings Zimfest community,

It is yet another wet, grey day here in Seattle. But a weather forecast for Mount Vernon says the Zimfest weekend of June 24-26 will be sunny and clear. Here’s hoping!

In one week the workshops team will look at workshop registrations and cancel those with enrollments under the minimum number of students. We don’t like to do that, so help us and the teachers out by signing up for those in danger of cancellation:

  • Session 5: Danmore Kusaya has agreed to teach any and all levels of mbira player in the fun song Huku Ine Ronda. 
  • Session 3: Zivanai Masango is teaching Vocal and Percussion Ensemble, and more people are needed to form an ensemble. All levels welcome!
  • Session 3: Salani Wamkanganise and Kelly Orphan collaborate in teaching Mhoro Nherera singing with hosho. We’d love it if students in this class could join in the Festival Highlights program on Sunday.

Reminder that Zimfest cannot happen without volunteer help, and there are still plenty of volunteer jobs to sign up for. Volunteer Coordinator Ev would like you to know that if you sign up for 3 or more volunteer jobs, you will be offered a trip to the Hospitality Lounge (formerly Claire’s Cafe), located onsite, for a goodie or two. We need your help to make Zimfest 2022 a success!

Claire and the 2022 Organizing Committee

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Zimfest Volunteers – We Need You

Posted on behalf of Ev Keller, Volunteers Coordinator:

Zimfest is: 
 
Z-imbabwean culture and music learning/listening opportunities
I-n a welcoming and supportive setting
M-aking meaningful and memorable moments
F-un for families, friends, fellow music lovers
E-veryone volunteers!! 
S-haring the good vibes
T-ogether crossing borders and taking flight in the experience
 
Please, take a moment to check out the (many) volunteer opportunities where you can lend a hand to help make light work for all. The sign-up link is here. We need YOU to make this a successful festival. Thank you for joining us – we appreciate you! ~Ev

And some alerts from Webmaster Larry Israel:

  • The Zimfest Ride Board has now been published – set up your ride sharing to and from the festival
  • Explore the evening and afternoon concert schedules for recent changes
  • And Festival Updates for workshop changes and additions

Till next time,
Zimfest 2022 OC

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Zimfest Mask Policy

Dear Zimfest Community,

I’m writing to announce that the Zimfest Association Board, based on work by the Covid safety committee, recently adopted a masking policy for Zimfest.  This policy applies to indoor spaces at the Skagit County Fairgrounds, as well as a nearby senior center where some events are held:

We expect all Zimfest participants to mask at all times while indoors at the Festival.  Currently, western Washington is experiencing a second increase of Omicron Covid infections. The highly infectious Omicron Covid variants have demonstrated an ability to evade immunity from vaccines, previous infections, or both. Consequently, we are asking for masking at all times when indoors at Zimfest, using N95, KN95 or surgical masks. Zimfest will have surgical masks available. Teachers may require that all participants in their workshops wear masks. We ask this with consideration, allowing us to include as many at-risk members as possible, and holding the best of intentions for a healthy gathering of our Zimfest community. We will depend on each other to uphold this safety standard, and encourage participants to speak up with reminders or requests for indoor masking.

“Zimfest participants” in this context includes: teachers, performers, workshop participants, indoor volunteers, vendors and workers contracted by Zimfest.

Please plan to bring your favorite style of N95, KN95, or surgical masks with you to the festival. Further details on Covid safety can be found on the Zimfest website.

Sincerely,

Alex Weeks
President, Zimfest Association

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