Were you there - 2010?

Irma Thomas and Dr. John at NPC10

Were you there?

The first musical panel in the history of APA conferences occured at the 2010 NPC in New Orleans.

It was April11, 2010, a beautiful Sunday, in a windowless room deep in the bowels of the New Orleans Convention Center.  Nick Spitzer (of the nationally acclaimed NPR series “American Routes”) moderated a panel including the “Queen of Soul” Irma Thomas and the “King of Funk” Dr. John.  The panel explored the connections between recovery planning, cultural planning and resilience.  At some point in the Q&A session, Irma broke out in her world famous song:  “It’s Rainin’.”  Half the room cried (me) and the other half snapped pictures and thanked their lucky stars that they were there. The Fire Marshall was also there, counting heads -- over 500, including standing room and a huge group in the hall.  Dr. John, not to be out done by Irma, interrupted the Q&A’s and mounted the piano for a house cheering finale.  What a session!  Were you there?

APA, New Orleans, and the 500 attendees have never been the same!

-- Steven Villavaso, FAICP, J.D.