Sunday, November 29, 2015

NOVEMBER 26, 2015
     WE ALL KNOW what country cookin' is like! We also know that it gets even better around holiday season. Given that Thanksgiving 2015 was just around the corner, we decided to try the buffet version of Thanksgiving dinner at The Skillet Restaurant at the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, AR. We gathered a friend and hit the trail early on Thanksgiving morning.
     The timing was perfect, and we arrived at the top of the mountain at the Folk Center just as folks were lining up. It seemed that we weren't the only ones who had been to the Folk Center on Thanksgiving Day, because while we made it for the first seating, the Center was prepared for at least four more hours of lines and seatings for Thanksgiving dinner.
     The tables were spread with salads, holiday meats of all kinds, dressing and two kinds of gravy, vegetables to please every guest, and casseroles galore. There was plenty of bread, and the patient waitstaff was ready with water, tea, and coffee. Our hats are off to the waiters and waitresses for their great work in handling four hours of hungry guests. Beautiful desserts were on trays on racks on carts. We saved room for dessert and sampled delicious pies and other sweets. To call it a feast would be a serious understatement! We felt truly blessed as we enjoyed the beautiful Thanksgiving meal and left to relax for a few hours in our comfortable cabin at Dry Creek Cabins which are a short walk/drive from The Skillet. What came next was every bit as good as the meal.
L. Pam Setser -
R. Joni Bishop
Pam Setser and Joni Bishop onstage at White Oak Theater

      We had tickets for a gospel concert at the White Oak Theater, which is near everything else at the Ozark Folk Center. Music Director Daren Dortin had arranged for music by two wonderful musicians--one well-known local multi-instrumentalist and singer named Pam Setser--and her friend and fellow performer from Nashville, TN, Joni Bishop. Pam and Joni play a variety of instruments, and they focused on the mountain dulcimer and acoustic guitar. They sang together and separately, as they alternated who was singing and who would sing next. Pam Setser grabbed a couple of tablespoons from the dining room at The Skillet (not really) and wore those spoons out! This lady can play the spoons! She said that she had worn out several pairs of spoons throughout the years. Joni Bishop stood and played her mountain dulcimer in a fashion similar to the way a Dobro[R] player might play, with a strap around her neck to hold the dulcimer. Pam and Joni  have their own unique styles of playing and singing. Their styles work very well together. We hope to hear them again soon!
Pam Setser and Joni Bishop onstage at White Oak Theater
Ozark Folk Center, Mountain View, AR
      Their choice of songs: Wayfaring Stranger, Twelve Gates to the City, Beulah Land, Grandma's Garden, The Unclouded Day, Blessed Assurance, This Little Light of Mine, I Saw the Light, I'll Fly Away, Consider the Lilies, Threads, Hallelujah I'm Ready, Will the Circle Be Unbroken, Steal Away Home, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, When God Made You, and Walkin' in Jerusalem Just Like John.
     Catch Elisa Brock's Pam and Joni YouTube video of Hallelujah I'm Ready by clicking here:   Thanks, Elisa, for the video!
     Special thanks to Daren Dortin, Pam and Joni, and the rest of the crew at the Ozark Folk Center for a job very well done.
     Happy Holidays to all!
     Pick away!   
Further Information:
Pam Setser
Joni Bishop
Ozark Folk Center