Celebrating at Milestone at Camp Keewanee

Last night we joined a throng of more than 100 men, women and children at the Camp Keewanee in the sticks north of Greenfield to celebrate a milestone in the Valley. Joe O’Rourke turned 50, with a full stage of musicians, dozens of family members in special green tee shirts, and a rollicking celebration he planned all by himself.

I remember in November when we asked Joe what he wanted for this special day. I could see his mind whirring, thinking of how he’d want to celebrate. Then just a month ago I got the evite, which was cool because it told me just who was coming and who would not be there. As you’d expect, it involved his legions of musician friends and included renditions of songs he’s written over the years.

The pavilion make the threat of rain no problem, and there was plenty of room to dance, and to catch up with many folks I hadn’t seen in a long time. David and Janis Sokol were both looking radiant and I got a chance to meet friendly WRSI Morning Man Monte Bellemonte and his wife and child.

I didn’t want to miss my chance to toast my old friend, who I’ve known since 1975, so when the musicians were in between sets I grabbed the mike. I told him the crowd that Joe’s the guy you want on your team, because he plays really hard and always wants to win. And that he’s not only a great friend, but he’s a great radio rep. And all of these people were there because of the legacy he’s built and the relationships he’s nurtured over these wonderful first 50 years.