Yep, that is where MY spin landed.
a Folk group from Richmond Va that blends elements of Gypsy, Americana and World Music.” I thought they sounded a bit like The Afghan Whigs but what do I know. Richmond has become a hipster town and the band drew a hipster crowd. No hate toward the hipsters though because they, too, help tip the balance in keeping Richmond further from the old South and closer to the progressive one. And the band did draw in a good amount of folks which is kind of where this post is leading so stick with me.
Unhappy Hour was almost feeling like a bust as I sat sipping my wine and contemplating heading out to get some dinner. But first, I wanted to see the exhibit. I headed in and was greeted by Kelly who simply announced that she was “the historian”. She was completely alone in the exhibit room and seemingly had been for a while so I struck up a conversation. After the two of us practically nerded out on what we love about Poe during a conversation which morphed into Poe’s sister Rosalie and graveyards in general, I was so grateful that I had had the chance to chat with her. She just felt like one of those kindred spirits and if I hadn’t felt so creepy I would have asked for her Facebook username or something. So even when the overall crowd seems different, you still can find your people. Kelly even comes up from North Carolina! How's that for extreme commuting for something you love.
|There's a cat in the garden!|
Overall, it really was a successful event and the museum’s executive director, Jaime Fawcett has transformed the place into a modern, “happening” destination.
After the exhibit, I strolled down the street to eat and continue reading J. W. Ocker’s Poe-Land: The Hallowed Haunts of Edgar Allan Poe (October 6, 2014). I’m currently reading chapter five which is focused on Maryland and how the Poe House in Baltimore, Maryland faced being closed back in 2010 and then finally closed its doors in 2013. I remember this being in the news and how upset everyone was. Unlike the Richmond Poe Museum, Poe actually lived in the Poe House in Baltimore. Thankfully the Poe House reopened for weekends last year and seems to remain open on weekends now.
While I was reading Ocker’s book I was becoming steadily irritated that folks seemingly only miss things when they’re gone or close to being gone. I think of Field of Dreams’ line, “If you build it, he will come.” I guess I kind of feel that way about weird events. I try to frequent every possible Unhappy Hour (and every possible spooky exhibit in the region for that matter) even if I’m looking at the same artifacts in the museum (which this season, I am not thanks to their new exhibits!) I understand there are numerous factors for why the Richmond museum works and the Baltimore one struggles—different location, different surroundings, different people, etc. etc. But if we want places like this to stay open, shouldn’t we frequent them? Shouldn’t we support local? That being said, I appreciate the efforts of keeping the Richmond Poe Museum’s Unhappy Hours diverse. It takes all kinds of people, not just us spooky girls, to keep these museums going. I look forward to showing up to a future Unhappy Hour and discovering a Poe- Griswold Rap Battle! If it happens, remember you read it here first! ;D
Steps down off of her Poe soapbox.
The cats are Edgar and Pluto by the way. They live at the museum.