Can you believe it’s been a little over a year since we moved into the new and improved Rhythm Hut?! Time certainly does fly!And well, with all that has happened in the past year, we thought it was really time to let our hair down, and celebrate. So we threw ourselves the biggest 1st birthday party the Coast has ever seen…
The week leading up to the night had that certain buzz in the air. It’s a little hard to describe – a little nervousness, a lot of frantic cleaning, preparation and setup by Hut crew amongst a week of constant rain.Tickets were flying out the door, and most importantly a whole lot of excitement filled the air! Gosh we were excited! The bands, the music, the drum circle (of course!), the great food and bar, the amazing volunteers, the party angels passing out lollipops and glow sticks, the dancing – so much dancing! And best of all, the large community gathering – our friends, family and loads of people we had never even met coming along to see what had been going down at the Hut over the past year, and to help celebrate a milestone.
Many who helped The Hut celebrate have been involved with the Hut community for years. Supporting this great space, teaching drumming, filling our dance floor and couches, helping with the move, and the hours and hours that volunteers put in with cleaning, renovating, sound proofing, and making this space not only useable, but the most incredibly inviting, beautiful place Gosford could ever imagine. And we were all so proud to show off the Hut to those visiting the space for the first time.
It seems Hut crew weren’t the only excited ones! With doors set to open at 7.30pm, the people had spoken – the line up was huge, and we opened doors early. That buzz heightened! The crowds piled in to find the car park lovingly transformed into a giant chai tent/night market. There were marquees filled with carpets, couches, cushions and lanterns, the smell of delicious food floating through the air, and we kicked off the night with a giant drum circle – true Hut style. Lead by our incredible teachers Jenna, Marcus and Rory, that drum circle was pumping! Drummers and percussionists had a blast and set the groove for the dancers in the middle. More buzz! Rory stole the show with his crazy costume, the natural front man he is.
Then we moved inside to see our favourite locals The Rhythm Hunters kick off the music for the night. Of course the Hut has a very special place in our hearts for the Hunters, and vice versa. The Hut, born out of the necessity of a rehearsal space for Hunters, is always proud to host this incredible band, but particularly so for our 1st birthday. Their sound is growing – horns and brand new music in the mix, new girls performing the spectacular dance Ladaoi, and of course there is no better feeling for a band than to play to their home crowd. And what a reception they got! We danced, we sat in silence and awe, and we screamed and whistled. I lost my voice (of course), and despite being around the Hut, during rehearsal, and hearing everything these guys do, it was the first complete show I had seen in quite a while, and my heart burst with pride this night – not only celebrating the Hut, but celebrating the Hunters too!
On the wall projected images of the Hut lovingly put together by Erin. Images of old and new Huts and of progress over the past year. All the work the amazing community has put in over the past year, it’s sometimes easy to forget just how far we have come! Meanwhile outside food was selling fast. Too fast! Saved by our incredible chef Michelle, who delivered more food when we sold out of those melt in your mouth quesadillas, and nachos. Claudia was expertly running the bar with a team of vollies serving up beers and cider galore, and mixing our special Hut cocktails. They proved so popular even I missed out! Then of course it was time to welcome back to the Hut The Crooked Fiddle Band. And no wonder we asked them back!
The crowd packed in and the dance floor moshed to that crazy cool mix of chainsaw folk. Virtuoso violinist Jess beamed as they finished their set, and a little birdy told me later that Jess’s two favourite gigs she has ever played, have been her two gigs at the Hut! This coming from a band who have played to thousands of people at Peat’s Ridge, Woodford, Folk Rhythm and Life and so many other big name festivals around the country.Yup! The Hut is certainly doing something right! We can’t wait to host The Crooked ones again in January!
Time for a breather…
DJ’s pumped in the chai tent and fire twirlers captivated us, while friends old and new danced under the stars in the open night. As the night got later, the food and bar finished up, little ones had gone to bed, that final wave of excitement grew once again when Wild Marmalade hit the stage for our late night dance party. Woah! That upbeat didge and drums, the crowd sweaty and feet moving – never stopping, lollipops passed around, glow sticks in the air, the constant line up to buy Wild Marmalade CDs. Clearly we need to get these guys back ASAP. What do you think? Finally Wild Marmalade finished up their set, and kicked back with a much-deserved cold drink, and the deck was filled with a different buzz this time. That chilled, tired but way too blissfully happy to head home to bed. Friends sat and chatted, and reflected on the year that had been, the killer vibes of the night, and why we have to do this all again ASAP. And yes! Agreed! In fact, we are already planning a big Chrissy party, summer festival bash. Cannot wait!!!