Music Friendly Community Notes From the Road: October 2022
Every month, we will be sharing a recap of Community Relations and Outreach Specialist Chip Adams’ travels throughout the state. Chip manages our Music Friendly Community Program, which includes over 30 cities throughout Texas, and growing every day.
This month, Chip made trips to Harlingen, McAllen, Edinburg, Corsicana, Selma, and Houston, and had the opportunity to meet up with several existing and potential Music Friendly Communities in the region.
Here are Chip’s Notes from the Road:
The TMO Music Friendly travels were jam packed in October, with events from Corsicana down to the Rio Grande Valley. One of the best parts of running our Music Friendly Community program is meeting with our cities across Texas, having important discussions on ways to grow their local music industries. Each trip gives me the opportunity to have conversations with remarkable Texans, getting our office in front of the music communities all across our great state.
My travels kicked off by flying into Harlingen, meeting with Assistant City Manager John Ramirez and Visit Harlingen’s Marketing & Events Manager Edgar Serna. This was a great opportunity to discuss our Music Friendly certification process, giving the city a roadmap to follow. I look forward to continuing the city’s process towards certification in the new year.
With a bit of time before Edinburg’s Music Friendly Community certification, I stopped in our MFC city McAllen to grab a bite to eat and shop for some vinyl. Thanks to a tip from Laura Robles of Visit McAllen, I stopped at the Mercado District to grab some tacos from La Cocinita. The San Manuel and pork belly tacos were outstanding. Next up was a quick visit to Valley Vinyls from some record crate digging. As an avid music collector, this was a great shop to find some long-lost gems.
The day concluded with Edinburg’s Music Friendly Community certification, which took place during their October City Council meeting. It was a pleasure meeting with Mayor Ramiro Garza and the Edinburg City Council. During the ceremony, members of the local music community including Mariachi Nueva Tradicion and the Folklorico Team Conceptos joined me at the podium. I was honored to be surrounded by such a fantastic group of Texans. Big thanks to Magdiel Castle, Assistant Director of Cultural Arts for the City of Edinburg, for all of his hard work throughout the certification process and taking on the MFC Liaison role.
Next on the travel itinerary included Corsicana for their MFC Workshop and then to Selma for certification. I rolled into Corsicana and enjoyed some time wandering their beautiful downtown, stopping by Mita’s Coffee House & Fine Food for some much-needed caffeine. The workshop took place at City Hall, where Main Street & Tourism Director Amy Tidwell gathered a great group of local music stakeholders together to learn about the Music Friendly Program.
October’s MFC travel next stop was to Selma for their Music Friendly Community certification ceremony. Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Maggie Titterington plugged the event into the annual Skylight Balloon Fest, bringing together a fantastic crowd from the local community to gather for a fun evening of local vendors, hot air balloons, and of course, live music. It was a pleasure meeting local city officials and Mayor Tom Daly. Lots of thanks to Wyatt Agee from the City of Selma for crossing the MFC finish line!
My last stop for the month was Houston for their much-anticipated Music Friendly Community certification event and listening session. It has been an absolute pleasure working with the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs throughout the certification process, including Director Necole Irvin and Music & Cultural Tourism Officer Gracie Chavez. TMO Director Brendon Anthony and I presented the certification to City Council Member Abbie Kamin at The Heights Theater.
The evening then kicked off the first public listening session with Houston’s newly established Music Advisory Board, giving local music stakeholders an opportunity to discuss concerns and ideas for the growth of their industry. This was the perfect launch for Houston’s MFC program!
Until next time!