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The “Spirit of Chautauqua” is a music tour coming to 45 Iowa counties this summer.The name is a tribute to the lively Chautauqua festivals that brought a world of entertainment to Iowacommunities a century ago.
Brought to you by Will Schmitt and county conservation departments across the state, the tour will kickoff June 3rd at Hillview Recreation Area in Hinton, and spend 2 months traversing Iowa's vast networkof public lands.
The idea came to Will as he was backpacking along the Pacific Crest Trail last year.“After 700 miles of desert hiking, I reached the Sierra Nevada mountains and was awestruck by thenatural beauty of the area. I felt a deeper appreciation for the public lands of America and a curiosityabout the many parks that dot the landscape in my home state. I initially thought of doing a bicycletour, but felt that by hosting concerts I could better share the experience with others.”Will was born and raised in Winterset, Iowa and for ten years led the Midwestern rock band, Funks G.Five years ago he put his electric guitar down to work at a wilderness therapy school in Vermont andhas gone on to hike over 4,000 miles up the eastern and western parts of the United States.His time spent in nature has informed his songwriting and overall approach to life and he's excited toshare the songs and stories he's picked up along his way.
"I look forward to spending the summer exploring Iowa's parks and grateful to the county conservationboards for helping me put this together. They do a wonderful job of preserving Iowa's natural heritageand making it accessible to everyone."
All concerts are free of charge and CDs and a tip jar will be available for donations.The tour arrives in Washington County at 7 pm on Thursday July 14th at Mary Marr Lodge, located at2943 Highway 92, Ainsworth, Iowa.
For tour dates and more information, please visit SpiritofChautauqua.com andWilliamBorgSchmitt.comContact Information:Will Schmittphone: 515-468-1989email: WilliamBorgSchmitt@gmail.com