The most amazing thing happened today – a gentleman from Salida, Colo., called and asked me how we get our Que Pasa calendar listings so complete.
He apparently travels to any and every music venue he finds in the region, a real fanatic he says, and the calendar listings from Santa Fe to Salida are a nightmare, except for The Taos News.
Now, having been doing the calendar since 2009, I can tell you it is its own kind of hell.
We've changed online platforms twice, maybe three times since I started and entertainment managers have cursed me (the calendar) more times than I can count on the hands of the entire newsroom.
Sometimes it's my fault, often it is the listing agent, but over the years, I told him, basically it is the customer who makes it happen. Since I have writing and copy editing duties, I just can't make hundreds of listings a month happen in the one day (Fridays) that I devote to the three calendars in Que Pasa.
Which means, the Taos-area listings get up online and in print because the listing public is so diligent (and excellent) at getting their players online by Thursday, the week before the calendar comes out.
He found that extraordinary!
Apparently, an online public news source for Salida (name witheld) was started to avail the public of media airtime for any and all events, but for some reason, the entertainment venues just don't take advantage of it.
"How did you get them to do it?" he asked.
Dumbfounded, I said we ultimately draw the line after some tutorial time and if the venue managers or performers miss deadline three times in a row, they just don't get published — at least until they do get it. End of story. Harsh, I know.
He persisted however, saying that even Santa Fe can't get the venues up in time for weekend travelers like himself. The Reporter managed for a while, he said, but then the calendar just went to hell. Same with Salida folks – "And Salida is probably as big a population as Taos, but they just don't put their stuff up there ... " he noted.
Wow. I'm truly humbled. I never realized how much ownership and connectedness our Taos folks have, in terms of getting their aritsts gigs up there for locals and visitors to know about.
Suddenly I realize all our cajolings have not fallen on deaf ears. Our people really care about their customers and their performers and go the extra mile to be of service to their clientel. They really care and it shows!
Well I am grateful. And I'm stunned. And thank you to this traveling Salida music lover who opened my eyes to the wonder of our people reaching out and touching as many people as possible.
I'll never complain again. OK, maybe if I'm in a crunch. But I am truly grateful for all the hard work Taoseños do to create an intimately connected community – a much wider audience than I ever knew before today.
Thank you, Taos.