IF YOU’RE KEEPING UP with 21st century acronyms, you probably know about FOMO, or, the fear of missing out. It’s been defined as, “the feeling or perception that others are having more fun, living better lives, or experiencing better things than you are. It involves a deep sense of envy and affects self-esteem.”
This particular phobia has been brought to our consciousness through the proliferation of social media, especially Facebook, where friends and acquaintances post pictures of all the fun they’re having… without you.
Let’s set aside the photos and stories, for now, from the pyramids or Amsterdam or the Great Wall or any number of faraway places on your bucket list, and focus on things happening here… in Marquette.
In case you haven’t noticed, nary a day has gone by this summer without a full schedule of happenings that you’ve either attended, or missed out on.
Although our summer weather has exhibited the usual schizophrenic patterns we’re accustomed to… hot, cold, wet, dry… which plays havoc with our outdoor events, we’ve forged ahead, undaunted. Other than the cancellation of the first Music on Third, most offerings have taken place, on schedule.
Though we’re nearing summer’s midway point, we’ve already seen a slew of events that drew both large audiences as well as much critical acclaim.
Forest Roberts Theatre hosted the jukebox musical, Rock of Ages, which featured a number of familiar faces as well as some national talent, combining to thrill… yes thrill, appreciative audiences over eight packed performances. Were you there? Or did you miss out?
How about Art Week? Hard to miss that one. The city’s Arts and Culture Office outdid themselves with a full schedule of everything from music to dance to every different kind of art you can imagine. Drumming circles? Got ‘em. Poetry? Yup. Plein Air Painting? That too. With all the different events taking place in every imaginable venue, missing out was hard to do. Hopefully, you didn’t.
As expected, Downtown Marquette has been the epicenter of many of our summer activities. Mattson Park was the site of the one-day City Fest Marquette 2023, followed by the annual International Food Fest, put on by the Marquette County Exchange Club, as part of our of 4th of July event schedule.
Both the fireworks display and the parade, which was run by the Kiwanis Club of Marquette, drew the usual shoulder-to-shoulder crowds, with nary a disappointed attendee. (Yes, that’s the second time I’ve used ‘nary.’ So that’s a total of twice in my lifetime.)
We’ve now seen three editions of the Wednesday Evening Street Market in the 100 block of West Washington. This event’s first week conveniently coincided with the start of Marquette’s new Social District, where adult beverages can be consumed outside, within the district’s boundaries.
(A note about the new Social District rules. For those of you who thought you now had carte blanche to BYO, you’ll be saddened to know that’s not the case. There are a lot of rules, which are spelled out on signage as well as on the DDA website.)
That first Wednesday night, being the first full day of the new Social District, one might have expected to see the street teeming with those taking advantage. But, from this viewpoint, that wasn’t the case. It was almost as if people weren’t quite sure if they were really allowed to partake.
Then, I saw something I found humorous… a group of DDA officials walking the street, prominently displaying their adult beverages in their approved cups, as if to say… it’s okay! Reminded me of the scene in Jaws where the city council folks put their toes in the water to show the townsfolk there was no danger. Unlike our drinking downtowners, we all know how that ended.
Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah… things you hopefully haven’t missed out on. Like, the city band playing on Thursday nights at the Band Shell on Presque Isle. If you’ve been, you likely noticed the temporary stage in front of the soon to be demolished band shell.
According to band director Steve Grugin, the stage is just a stopgap measure put in place until funding can be identified to build a new structure. “We are hoping to hear soon about a large grant that has been applied for by the Marquette City Band in collaboration with Marquette Parks and Recreation Department. We will then launch a public fundraising campaign for additional funding and begin design work for a new band shell. We are hoping to have a new band shell built on the current site within two years.”
Their performance during Art Week drew more people than I’ve ever seen for one of their Thursday night performances. If you don’t want to miss out on any of their upcoming concerts, you can find their summer schedule at marquettecityband.com.
Tomorrow (Saturday) night, the Presque Isle air will be filled with the sounds of the Marquette Symphony Orchestra, as they present “POPS! in the Park.” It’s a free concert beginning at 7:30 and sponsored by Eagle Mine.
Is your FOMO rearing its ugly head yet? Fear not, because there are still plenty of seasonal activities as well as stand-alone and popup events that continue to this day. Things like lighthouse tours, history walks, art workshops, and any number of eclectic offerings for both spectators and participants. A comprehensive schedule can be found at mqtcompass.com. Plus, there’s nightly live music found at any number of local pubs. For that, check out Marquette Music Scene on Facebook.
If you’re willing to make the ten minute drive up the road, Negaunee’s Pioneer Days conclude with tomorrow’s parade and fireworks over Teal Lake. Other area communities also have planned activities that I’m sure you’re welcome to attend. A Google search will help you find one, or more, right up your alley.
So, rather than suffer the mental anguish that accompanies the worst cases of FOMO, you can employ the very effective treatment method I’ll share with you here. All you have to do is… go!