The California and the West Study Group is sponsoring an event on September 30th open to the whole Institute membership. We will be attending a fandango in Martinez at the historic Martinez adobe, with a number of added inducements. The fandango, a traditional community dance, has been organized by a group that sings historic Californio songs and also plays for dancing, Los Arribeños. At the fandango, the group will teach a few of the dances and songs for anyone who would like to try. This is a public event attended by all ages, as befits the original fandangos of the era (roughly 1815–1848). Observers are also welcome.
Institute members will have a mid-afternoon talk by Lance Beeson, director of the group, about the elements and sources of the music, how he got interested and put his group together, and some history of the era. There will be Q and A. At about 5 pm we will adjourn to one of the many Mexican restaurants in Martinez. We will return for the fandango about 6:30. The event lasts until dark, but Institute members may of course leave whenever individual carpools decide.
Admission to the adobe and the Muir house are free at all times. There is also no charge for the fandango. Mr. Beeson is being paid by the Institute, so there is no charge for his lecture. However, members will pay for their own dinners, although we will make a group reservation to make sure we can be accommodated.
The 1849 Vicente Martinez Adobe is on the property of the John Muir National Historic Site. Although seeing John Muir’s mansion is not part of our “official” program, interested members could certainly visit the residence before the talk, which will start about 3:30.
If you plan to attend—and especially if you want to be in on the dinner reservation—please email Jody Offer by September 23rd.