I wanted you all to know that if I wasn't already scheduled to be out of state at another dulcimer event that weekend, I would, for sure, be joining y'all in Berea. Just a suggestion...if someone writes the John Jacob Niles Center at the University of Kentucky, you may be able to get permission to make a quick stop at JJNiles' home just outside Lexington, not far off I-75 at exit 104. It is private property, so I'm sure people don't want a bunch of cars parking in the driveway and poking around without permission--part of the building is still being used for storage and office space, I think. John Gribble and I visited the site when he was working on his JJNiles article for Dulcimer Player News in 2016. The house, which is right by the road, looks like it is partly in ruins, but if you stand in the center of the courtyard and look past the vines that seem to be covering everything, you will spot some treasure such as the small niche with the figurine of St. Francis of Assisi, beautiful handmade tiles inlaid in the stonework, and a leaded glass window. Not far from the house is the small Episcopal Church with the double doors that he hand carved. The pretty stone-walled cemetery behind the church has the grave of JJNiles and if you're lucky there will be some flowers and trees in bloom! The church caretaker lives across the road and can tell you more about why this beautiful small church is located in (seemingly) the "middle of nowhere."
Jan Potts, Lexington, KY
"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke