Mateel Forced to Cancel Summer Arts and Music Festival…

mateel Logo featurePress release from the Mateel Community Center:

Dear Community,

Concerning the current public health crisis of the region, where we are at as a state and as a country, and the shock our economy is under, the Mateel Community Center board of directors has been deliberating on how to proceed with the 44th annual Summer Arts & Music Festival (SAMF).

SAMF is the Mateel Community Center’s main fundraiser and produces most of our annual income since 2017. This was slated to be the 44th time we have gathered at Benbow state recreation area, throughout the decades the fair has shifted dates although for many years now it has been held the first weekend of June.

This year it was to be held June 6th & 7th, when this CoronaVirus epidemic news started and even as it grew into a pandemic we still felt like it would be contained or it wouldn’t reach behind the “redwood curtain”, this is clearly not the case anymore.

These are unprecedented times we find ourselves in, as we are told to isolate, abide by social distancing, not gather in groups and so forth. We have closed the community center and office to the public for now, and so we have been deliberating on how to proceed.

The decision has become apparent given the crisis we are in as we are faced with challenging times ahead and unable to predict the economic climate of the area after this has finally passed. These issues could adversely impact festival attendance and event production so the only answer we can reasonably arrive at is that we are forced to cancel the Summer Arts & Music Festival.

We are saddened and deeply concerned as this affects the Mateel and our community for obvious reasons.  At this point we are unable to consider postponing the festival as the State parks, including Benbow, are closing down for now.

We will be updating the community as just as soon as we are able, in the meantime please follow health guidelines and government directives.



          The Mateel Community Center’s Board of Directors and Staff



  • I’ve been reading the comments up in Humboldt after I left, largely because y’all so insular and proud of your ignorance. All your comments about keeping “outsiders” away because you think they are contaminating you. Well guess what, Hum? The neighboring counties all have less of this disease than you do, so YOU stay away from US. No doubt your dumb ass partying and libertarianism are not helping you. Or, maybe, revise your thinking if you don’t like how that feels.<!– /.

  • So not “forced”. Decided.

  • Well, that sucks. I guess we’ve all got to start over from the economic bottom once again.
    FYI, 3 countries have stated that their genetic sequencing points to the US as the source of covid 19.
    Which means that 2 impressions will arise from widescale testing; that it is spreading like wildfire or that we’ve already had it for months and are just realizing it.
    I’m in Camp number 2, we’ve had it for months and not known it, which seems a reasonable assumption given the circumstances.
    Either way, bippitybop’s comment of ‘you have it worse than others’ is not only unhelpful but stupid.
    Thank you, bippityidiot, for having left Humboldt. Please leave our media outlets as well. Good luck living outside the redwood curtain.

  • I have been thinking about how the SAMF might be affected by the virus. Was hoping the MCC could hold out longer to make a decision. But alas, it’s not to be.
    IT IS A GREAT LOSS TO THE COMMUNITY that we will not have our beloved Summer Arts and Music Festival!! It’s always the best place to gather each summer. Best of the year, really!
    So many losses from the panic and reality of this pandemic. I only hope we gain some good changes, and that the community can soon get together again later this summer.
    Thanks MCC! Hang in there!! We love and need you!

  • Great Horned Toad

    My weed is better then yours !.
    My toad is also bigger then yours . 😝
    Lol. 🤣😂😜

  • This is sad news , I thought it d turn out this way . What a essential part of our community, in fact ” Benbow”
    ( our little nickname) made it possible for us to create our community ! Its true , we started this party 45 years ago ! It was a dream come true, ” Lets put a solar panel out in the sun and plug in a electric guitar amp”
    Rest in Peace Arlo, Bruce Watering Tree, Hoy, Doug, Jimmy ( the Sound man), Deerhawk ( who gave us our own name – Mateel ) so many of us have ” Gone Home” who gave their lives to this creation of our own vibration.
    I have been to ALL 44 of them . It is with tears that i write this this new morning . All those w/o a heart , who
    only have a gizzard – do not comment ! STHFU – Dont criticize what you can not understand.
    To all of us who Know that this is the Heart and Soul of our beloved unity/ community that we created
    from nothing , but a dream . A dream to move ” Back to the Land” and “live simply so others can simply live.”
    Voluntary Simplicity – enlightened poverty – before most of ya ll were even born , in fact why ya ll were born.
    Remember Judy Mowatt singin ” We , we got a right to be free and we we will build our own society, and we we will sing our OWN SONG !” That is Exactly what i am talkin about and exactly what we DID. We bought that old firemans hall for $ 50 Gs . The Og Mateel center , next to the cemetery . Thats a whole nother story.
    The Southern Humboldt Arts and Music Festival is Prime time – best festival ever !
    The Spinning Wheel of life will re bound and the folks will have there time in the sun -again . Fret Not !
    “Remember , Love is more contagious than all the pathogens in the world” I said that. We shall over come.
    and be together with Love and ONLY Love Down by the riverside again . Mateel Forever! Never forget our
    Roots ! Benbow is our Tap Root !
    Give Thanks to all of the Dancers , Singers , and Players of Instruments . Give thanks to all who created
    this major event every year . GiveThanks to all of the artists and craftspeople and cooks , and kids and
    Jimmy D. and Babette and Justin and Dan G. and Sheri, and there are way to many to mention and always last but never least the posse of volunteers and even the B&B co.
    I want to send maximum Love to All and every single one of us who play in the moment free music together
    for free ! For the sake of pure Joyousness and Togetherness in the Hearth Tent ! Thats my Krew , thats what we do. I wanna Jamb it with YOU. Every year we bring all of our drums , rattles, ringers, dingers, sticks & stones
    and singing bowls and kilimbas and mirimba , ad clackers , Bamboo Flutes and cow bells, and Love in our heart to create a space for All to come make a joyfull noise. Thank you all who have partaken of so many blessed magical moments being together as one . we will be there again – Jah Willin . If by chance i do not make it through this horrible Sars 2 pandemic ,or some other sudden ending happens, I just want yas to know just how much i LOVE yas All -everyone of US .
    like the old song says ” You make me so , so very happy , iam so glad you came into my life , Thank You baby.
    Love One Another ! Stay Positive. Be good Family. Wash your Hands . You make my Heart Smile .
    Know that You are Loved , a especial part of the ONE LOVE ! ” Live Thanks All the While” – br. Tom -owt
    p.s. Let s jamb as soon as we can !

  • That’s dumb. Please reconsider. I’m staying positive and hoping next few weeks this dies down. Please don’t go canceling things in June. My kids are going to be devastated. No school. No sports. And now no summer arts. Please hold off before making a huge decision like that. Stay positive. We’re hoping all back to normal in few weeks. Baseball. Softball. School. Work. Everything back to normalCome on We will win

  • Yeah, this is sad. I am still annoyed with the Mateel for not allowing a “Personal” category in thier exclusive Canno Event.. and excluding parts of the community from participating… But the Summer Arts has always been a great time and a really positive event for the community. I wonder if some sort of paid “Online” event would be possible? Band members can often stay 6 feet away from each other ..right? And it is really early to cancel it. Who knows, this Pandemic could last weeks or months.. but music is always healthy and healing..

Leave a Reply to Koastdog Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.