Cycropia Dazzles Orton

International music night with Cycropia’s “Kodama” at 8:15 p.m.

Cycropia peforms “Kodama” on Family Night of the Orton Park Festival, August 23, 2012. Photo by: D.M. Hughes

Crycropia’s performance of “Kodama” was an absolute stunner with throngs of people ¬†attending on Family Night at the Orton Park Festival. Tonight is International Night featuring Sierra Leone’s Refugee All-Stars at 6 p.m., with a break between music sets at 7 p.m. for the MNA Auction, followed by the final festival peformance of Cycropia’s Kodama.

“I went last night. It was breathtaking, beautiful, thrilling-at times, jawdropping. As we used to say, back in the day, ‘It blew me away’, said Atwood resident Dan Melton after viewing Kodama. ¬†“When I shut my eyes to sleep last night, I had pictures of the performance swirling in my head. Still do, this morning.”¬† Continue reading

Orton Park Ready to Celebrate

47th Orton Fest is here despite lingering noise and crowd concerns

In 1975 the festival was known as the MNA picnic. Rented from the City was a trailer that transformed into a stage. Courtesy: Richard and Judith Guyot

The Orton Park Festival (August 23-26) is just days away in this year of the perpetual summer. After Orton there is just one last neighborhood gathering to go, the Willy Street Fair. The Fair, The Fest, La Fete and Waterfront have been fantastic neighborhood celebrations; but may be a victim of their own successes as they have grown exponentially in popularity, and for some, threaten the beauty of the neighborhood they celebrate.

As a kid over three decades ago, the Orton Park Festival was the last event of the summer since it always seemed to fall on the Sunday before the first day of school. That would be Monday, the very next day. So it was a bittersweet time, filled with games, food, music, and my friends, but the first day of school always loomed.

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Mythical Tree Spirit to Fly at Orton Park Fest

Cycropia Aerial dance to perform “Kodama” in the Orton oak trees

Cycropia Aerial Dance performs at Orton Park in 2011. This year they can be seen on the evenings of August 23 and 24. Courtesy: Crycropia Aerial Dance

In Japan they call it “Kodama”, the mythical tree spirit that protects old trees. Cycropia Aerial Dance hopes to evoke that spirit in Orton Park, a former graveyard, as severe drought has plagued southern Wisconsin this year. The trees are also the center of a neighborhood debate over the effect of thousands of feet and infrastructure the Orton Park Festival (August 23-26) has each year on the park’s Burr oaks.

For the past 10 years Cycropia Aerial Dance, a local collective named for a silkworm moth that is native to Wisconsin, has electrified the first two evenings of the festival with aerial displays to entertain what last year was an estimated 4,000 people crammed into the park.

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Changes Made to Orton Park Festival

MNA holds second meeting to address noise, environmental concerns

Residents are concerned about noise during the Orton Park Festival as well as the affect of thousands of feet on the turf and tree roots.

The success of neighborhood festivals in the Marquette Neighborhood is starting to show some strain on residents. Last week (July 31) the Marquette Neighborhood Association held a second meeting to address concerns regarding noise during the upcoming Orton Park Festival and wear and tear on the turf and the tree roots.

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