By Danielle Hoskins

In our tenth year of the Buttermilk Jamboree, after a two year hiatus, not only was the weather beautiful and full of sunshine, but so was the music, the workshops, the artwork, and the people!!

Over the years of Circle Pines Center hosting what has been called one of the best music festivals in the state of Michigan, the stories that we take away are ongoing, inspirational, and even at times deeply emotional. But sometimes, the favorite stories are those that bring us laughter and shine a light on the comradery that Buttermilk leaders and participants feel with one another. This is one of those tales, and I hope that it makes you smile.

Since the weather was so warm this year, the lifeguarded beach was definitely a major attraction, and people were venturing down the trails any time that the waterfront was open. 

Early on Saturday, Coordinators and Volunteers in every area were getting reports of a tree having fallen over the trail on the road to the beach in the night. Of course, the first instinct of our team, myself included, is to call Andy and see what he can do. Andy Hollenbeck serves as our Buttermilk “Garbage Czar” and has been beautifully managing the trash and recycling program for many years. He also happens to be a certified lumberjack who is rarely without his helmet, chaps and chainsaws. Andy does many things throughout the preparation leading up to Buttermilk to help ready the grounds, and so clearing out a single tree is a quick project indeed. Maybe because of the hour, or maybe because of the urgency that people felt to keep the festivities going smoothly, several calls from different Coordinators had already gone to him by the time I sent a text his way. In true Andy style, he simply replied “I’m on my way!!” It wasn’t until less than a minute later when he appeared at the Farmhouse in full gear did I realize that he was already well aware of the situation. As we quickly checked in and discussed the morning events and his plan, no less than three other festival attendees approached and asked if he was aware of the tree that had fallen- even with his chainsaw seated in the golf cart next to him. He also got at least one more text message asking if he could help within that brief pause. As he headed off to clear the road, it was as if the festival collectively breathed a sigh of relief- Andy’s got it all under control!!

I wanted to share this story, because even though it’s just a brief and almost silly instance of over-communication, it’s also a true testament to the ownership felt by everyone who works with, and attends the Buttermilk Jamboree. I truly hope to see you join us next year- and if you do, keep an eye out for the chainsaw mount that I plan to install on Andy’s golf cart. Just in case!!