As promised a note about the Rumble at Russellville NATPA event that was scheduled for next weekend:
After reading a bunch of comments today and promising a video response to the cancellation, I have thought it best for me, THE promoter of the event, to clear the air in this manner. This way there is no mistaking what I say and what I share here, where I might get tongue-tied in a video. Read it once or twice if required.
As of last night I was still full bore making preparations for this event, and part of that was keeping an eye on positivity rates across the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Logan County, Kentucky, based on the White House “positivity map” as I would call it, was squarely in the red as of yesterday. In the back of my mind I knew I would have to make a phone call or two the week prior to the pull to get a final “all clear” so that we didn’t have a real mess next week.
I spoke with the Logan County Judge-Executive this morning about the pull. To paraphrase what he said, he said: “I want you all to come to Russellville but now is not the time.” When the pulling community rolls into a town, we are their guests in that town. As the lead “guest,” it’s my responsibility to work with the community leaders to keep them happy and do a good enough job that they welcome us back. It was NOT about the mask; the Judge shared with me that there had been two separate outbreaks in the county in the past week, one was a birthday party where eight caught the virus and of those eight, four are hospitalized and one on a ventilator. The other source was a wedding where ten attendees contracted it. Given the situation in Russellville and Logan County, I can do nothing but offer respect for his decision and his desire that 1) no one else bring the virus into town and 2) no one pack it home with them. I fully believe that we could have held the pull without incident, following, primarily, the 6ft distancing/hand washing/keeping your fingers out of your holes protocols. But, let me say it again: we are the GUESTS of a community when we come pull, especially when there were pullers from New York to South Dakota coming. We gotta play by their rules so that we can have opportunity to play there again. The Judge-Executive and Arena manager both want me to put something together again and I will when this virus clears and does not interfere with other events.
Now having said that, I need to share this:
Bryan Lively is in the “making pullers happy” business. It cannot be said any louder nor clearer. 2020 has been undeniably tough. It was tough when we learned in late September that Mason, Michigan—at that time—had been cancelled. I have always wanted to put a pull on, and it looked like the stars aligned to make it happen. With the support of Darrell Kusgen, Jody Barber, the NATPA board, and…with HUGE support from Alison Barber, this thing came together. This was an opportunity to make pullers happy, to gather together, to have fun. I have put aside other stuff I needed to be doing to, in my mind, raise some spirits and see people laugh and enjoy one another, in person. It seemed a more important task.
And before I forget, ALL…ALL hook fees will be refunded in the coming days. By the numbers I had coming in, it was going to be a HUGE pull.
Have a good evening, again, love you all…and Let’s Go Pulling…soon.