Kerouac’s Reach, the Reporting, & the Rakes

Sun writer Angel Roy’s article in this morning’s paper explores the geographical and generational reach of Kerouac. People from Texas, Ohio, California, Rhode Island, Nevada, and elsewhere came for the Kerouac Literary Festival. From Thursday through Saturday nearly 2,000 people attended the events, which continue through late afternoon, with the now-traditional David Amram jam at Cappy’s Copper Kettle, 245 Central Street, starting at 3 pm—a free-for-all of words and music capturing Kerouac’s expansive spirit. Read the Sun article here, and buy the paper if you appreciate the coverage.

Note that Amram was in Lowell Thursday night and Friday, flew to the midwest to make his regular appearance in the annual Farm Aid benefit, and then flew back to be in Lowell today. The man turns 80 this year. (On Thursday, Dec. 9, 7.30 pm, UMass Lowell’s Kay Roberts will lead a huge birthday tribute to David that’s being billed as “David Amram’s 80th Birthday Bash!” The music will range from Bach to Ellington to Amram’s own compositions. Don’t miss it. Admission is free.)

A word about the media this week—the Sun, Boston Globe, WCAP Radio, WBZ radio, WBUR Radio, the Associated Press, local bloggers, and other print, electronic, and web outlets provided essential coverage of the events so that the public would be informed about the happenings in Lowell. The Festival organizers are grateful for the reporting. Also, the volunteers from Lowell Celebrates Kerouac! Inc., the media relations and marketing staffs in the UMass Lowell Public Affairs Office, and staff at the Cultural Organization of Lowell and National Park Service kept the information flowing to the media.

And a word of thanks to the City of Lowell park maintenance crew that showed up early Saturday morning to spruce up Kerouac Park, planting fall flowers, spreading bark mulch around trees and in planting beds, and generally cleaning up the grounds so that it looked good when festival-goers came to the Kerouac Commemorative. After all the rain and wind Friday, we know the crews were very busy around the city keeping up with the after-effects of the storm. Thanks to the City Manager’s Office and Parks Department for the special effort.