Friday, May 18, 2012
The kite festival season is in full swing in the Midwest. This weekend is one of the biggest and best - the Great Lakes Kite Festival in Grand Haven, Michigan. Next weekend is another of the biggest and best festivals - Family Kite Fest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
We used to perform at these and many other festivals in the Midwest. Many of our best friends are from the kite community. When people ask us what we miss about our former home, our kite friends and the kite festivals are always near the top of our small list.
We tried several years ago to start a kite festival on the beach here in Isabela. We thought then - and still do - a festival like the ones we know in the States could be a great thing here. There is simply nothing like it here. We had performers from the States ready to come. We had some funding lined up and people helping us get more. The stumbling block was the Departamento de Recursos Naturales y Ambiente - the Puerto Rican Department of Natural Resources. We needed a permit from them and got absolutely nowhere. It was one of the few times in Puerto Rico we felt truly discriminated against because we're gringos and not fluent in Spanish.
After months of working on it we finally said "enough!" We thought, "Is this how we want to spend our time and energy?" Between us, Elaine and I have produced more than a hundred successful kite festivals. That's not counting the ones we performed or competed at. (At one time we were ranked sixth in the country.) We don't have to prove anything. Move on to other things.
This video is one we produced then to show potential sponsors the kind of festival we we're planning.