| 03.17.2018

Courtesy trumps chaos — Be friendly to visitors during UI’s Jazz Fest


The University of Idaho Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival brings professionals, students and community members together in Moscow to celebrate a unique American art form — along with endless lines and a swarm of high school students.Jazz Fest always elicits grumbling from the university community as campus detours and an influx in the population disrupt our everyday routines. But the benefits of Jazz Fest encompass everyone at UI, and greatly outweigh the inconvenience of searching for parking.
The four days of Jazz Fest are a recruitment opportunity for UI, as almost 4,000 high school students are expected to attend. Colleges outside of the music department are participating in the festival, such as the College of Natural Resources’ workshop on making wooden instruments. The College of Business and Economics has organized a workshop to present business management techniques to prospective students. It’s also an economic boon for local businesses.
Starting in 1967 with a few student performances and one guest artist, Jazz Fest has become an internationally renowned event. It’s one of UI’s biggest traditions and a source of pride for the entire community.
Sharing our campus with musical artists, high school teachers and students, and community members is an occasion to showcase UI’s finer qualities — especially in light of recent negative media coverage.
Be considerate throughout this week. If you see a high school student struggling to carry an instrument twice their size, hold the door open for them. When a parent is wandering lost with a crazed expression, offer to give them directions. After all, it’s only common courtesy.
The young musicians and artists performing this week are here because they are passionate and dedicated. Even if you don’t love jazz, you can at least appreciate the excitement of those who create it.
The music and spirit of Jazz Fest is a positive contribution to our campus — don’t ruin it with a negative attitude.
— EE

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