San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

June 12th, 2009
The Weekend: Waving the flag

Rodney Hayden is playing Saturday night at Cheatham Street Warehouse.

Scene Editor

Sunday, June 14 is Flag Day, a holiday first observed by a 19-year old school teacher, Bernard J. Cigrand in 1885 in his Stony Hill School classroom in Wisconsin. The observance was to commemorate Congress’ adoption of the Stars and Stripes as the flag of the U.S. on June 14, 1777.  From these humble beginnings, it grew until Woodrow Wilson officially declared it a day for nationwide observance in 1910.

The flag’s history inspires many, and while the stories of Betsy Ross are often regarded by flag historians (vexillologists if you want the formal term) as slightly apocryphal, it remains to be seen if she will be validated as the controversy goes on. Betsy would certainly be astounded to see what has happened to the flag through the years as it has grown with many stars and often ends up on a patch embroidered on the seat of a pair of jeans or as a bumper sticker on a gas guzzling SUV. The flag, after all, is supposed to be a symbol of something greater than just ourselves – justice and freedom for all citizens, not a decorating motif.

Betsy would be astounded by “Shipwreck” Kelly and his flagpole sitting stunts, as well. Flagpole sitting was a craze in 1929, so think on that before you disparage too harshly the trends of today. Kelly estimated that he logged over 20,000 hours sitting on flagpoles and he once sat for 49 days on one flagpole. We do not suggest flagpole sitting as a proper or comfortable way to observe Flag Day.

Our national anthem, as you know, is a poem about the flag set to music. Francis Scott Key made it so clear what he thought of the flag that we repeat it at almost every sporting event with often disastrous renderings. The poem was set to the tune of an old English drinking song, “To Anacreon in Heaven.” Maybe that’s why you have to be drunk to be able reach all those high notes.

There’s a great story about Teddy Roosevelt and the flag that’s worth repeating in honor of Flag Day. TR was dining in Philadelphia when he saw a fella outside the window wiping his nose with what appeared to be a flag. TR jumped up, picked up a small stick and started beating the man for “defacing the symbol of America.” After a few whacks, he noticed that it was not a flag but just a blue handkerchief with stars on it. He stopped and apologized to the man and then gave him one more whack for making him “riled up with national pride!”

One more thought for Flag Day, a quote from O. Henry, “You can’t appreciate home till you’ve left it, money till it’s spent, your wife until she’s joined a woman’s club, nor Old Glory till you see it hanging on a broomstick on a shanty of a consul in a foreign town.”

All Americans traveling or living in foreign lands know what O. Henry is talking about.

There’s plenty of stuff to do before celebrating Flag Day (might we suggest baking up a flag cake?) and here are just a few options.

Friday, June 12

Today, the San Marcos Public Library (625 East  Hopkins Street) kicks off their new summer reading program, entitled “Deep in the Heart of Texas Libraries!”

Kids can also pick up their summer reading logs at the performance.  Upon completion of 240 minutes of reading time, kids will receive a slip for a drawing to win cool prizes. The more you read, the more chances you will have to win.

At 5 p.m., stretch your body and release your tension with Certified Sivananada Yoga Tina Baumgartner at the library. Wear loose clothing and bring a towel for comfortable participation in this free class.

The early gigs for music tonight find the awesome HalleyAnna at the Cheatham Street Warehouse (119 Cheatham Street) at 5:30 p.m. and Andy Hartsock at Wake the Dead Coffee House (1432 RR 12) at 6 p.m.

Try not to miss the great hooks and power pop of Bill Jerram at 6 p.m. at the Triple Crown (206 North Edward Gary). Jerram is one of the highlights of the evening.

The Bingo cage will be turning at the Wimberley VFW (Veterans Park on Jacobs Well Road) tonight, starting at 6:30 p.m. There are great prizes and delicious concessions served up by the Ladies Auxiliary, too.

“The Goddess Show” at All About Image Gallery in Wimberley (14500 RR 12, Suite 16) honors the divine feminine with amazing art in many media – Jewelry, tiles, watercolors, pencil drawings, blessing dolls and much more. The show is opens tonight with a reception from 6-8 p.m.

Wake The Dead Coffee House has a plethora of musical treats tonight starting at 7 p.m. with Molly Hayes and later featuring the Olive Street Band and Amy Rose and the Rockets.

My Fair Lady will play at the Emily Ann Theatre (1101 FM 2325) all this weekend. The engaging musical story of Eliza Dolittle and Professor Henry Higgins will start at 8 p.m. at this lovely outdoor theatre. Tickets are only $15.

Riley’s (8894 FM 1102) will have the delightful Andrea Marie and the Magnolia Band tonight starting at 9 p.m., and the Triple Crown has a very full and diverse bill with I.S.S., Vex, Bat Castle and Monk.

Zack Walther and the Cronkites have been kicking out the alt-country jams and taking names for the last couple of years. You can catch them tonight at the Cheatham Street Warehouse and see what all the fuss is about. You won’t be disappointed.

Saturday, June 13

It’s too late to register to play, but golf enthusiasts may want to rise early to see the tee-off of the LBJ Museum Golf Tournament at 7:30 a.m. at Quail Creek Country Club  (2701 Airport Highway 21). The tournament helps raise funds for the LBJ Museum, and if you don’t want to watch the golf, consider going to see the fascinating artifacts at the museum. Their weekend hours are 1-5 p.m. on Friday and Sunday and 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. on Saturday.

It might be a pleasant day to hike around Lower Purgatory and see the magical mosaic compass constructed by artist Jennifer Fruth. This project has taken a couple of years and it is now almost totally complete. Fruth used materials that were “seconds” and repurposed the granite into inspired art. The compass can be seen in Lower Purgatory in the middle of the sky watch pod.

Thunderhill Raceway in Kyle is hosting the Texas Super Racing Series tonight. There are two divisions in this exciting series; Late Models and Allison Legacys. Additional speedy action will be provided by Dwarf cars, Super Stocks, Thunder Stocks, Grand Stocks, Mini Stocks and Naskarts. The action is always thunderous and heart pounding. The gates open at 5 p.m.

The Emily Ann Theatre in Wimberley will reprise the musical, My Fair Lady, tonight in case you missed it on Friday. The 34-member cast will be all dressed up and ready to perform at 8 p.m. tonight.

Aaron Navarro and the Brewster McKracken Band have a fine tune that is rising up the country charts, “Tom Ames Prayer.” Ask them to play it when you go to see them at Riley’s tonight. They’ll start up around 9 p.m.

Clubs will have its CD release gig tonight at the Triple Crown. The music begins at 9 p.m. Joined the show are Newlywed, the Couch, and the Patrick Bateman Experience.

Rodney Hayden has been lauded by magazines as diverse as People, Billboard, No Depression and Country Weekly. His “new country” spirit permeates every song. You can hear him tonight at the Cheatham Street Warehouse at 9 p.m.

Sunday, June 14

After church, why not stop by Wake the Dead Coffee House and pick up some delicious local produce at the fruit and veggie stand? It’s open from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and it always feels good to support local agriculture. And, Charlie, it’s in good taste and it tastes good. (If you get that reference give yourself five points.)

If you are a fan of sweet harmonies, Americana and country music, you will not need an introduction to the Ash Family, appearing at the Cheatham Street from 4-8 p.m.. Their delicious melodic blending and heart-felt songs are a joy to hear.

A pleasant end to the weekend could include watching My Fair Lady at the beautiful outdoor Emily Ann Theatre. They are willing to perform, they are wanting to perform, they are waiting to perform at 8 p.m. this evening. A musical under the Texas stars seems like a pretty nice way to spend an evening.

It’s open mic night at both Riley’s and the Triple Crown, so it might be as good a time as any to go out and let your songbird soar.

If you haven’t seen the new Star Trek movie, it would be cool to go see it at the Corral Theatre in Wimberley (100 Flite Acres Road), the outdoor walk-in theatre. You can gaze at the night sky while you watch the galaxies get saved. It’s probably the perfect venue for this flick. The movies start at “dark thirty.”

You could stay home and watch the awesome Bogie double-header on Turner Classic Movies (TCM). Both “To Have and Have Not” (7 p.m.) and “The Big Sleep” (8 p.m.) feature one of Hollywood’s most legendary and smoldering couples, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. “To Have and Have Not” was the 19-year old Bacall’s first role. It’s based on a novel by Ernest Hemingway. “The Big Sleep” is based on the book by Raymond Chandler. Both movies were written, in part, by William Faulkner. They just don’t make ‘em like that anymore.

It’s worth it to just hear Bacall deliver those famous lines in “To Have and Have Not” (that were actually penned by director Howard Hawks), “You don’t have to say anything, and you don’t have to do anything. Not a thing. Oh, maybe just whistle. You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and… blow. ”


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