Groovefest grooves on despite founder’s illness

CEDAR CITY – The show-stopping sounds of the many artists who jammed their way into the hearts of thousands at the 2015 Groovefest Music and Art Festival only played second fiddle to one man; Festival Founder Tim Cretsinger, whose returning throat cancer left him unable to speak for the first year ever.

Groovefest Music and Art festival founder Tim Cretsinger places a reassuring hand on his wife Lisa Cretsinger's shoulder as she breaks down while reading his message to the crowd, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News
Groovefest Music and Art festival founder Tim Cretsinger places a reassuring hand on his wife Lisa Cretsinger’s shoulder as she breaks down while reading his message to the crowd, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News

Despite the illness causing him to once again resume chemotherapy and radiation treatments the very same week Groovefest began, Cretsinger was spotted in the audience enjoying the performances, photographing the entertainment and occasionally onstage where he was seen, but not heard.

At one point during Saturday’s show Cretsinger’s wife, Lisa Cretsinger, took the second stage to read a letter that her husband wrote to the crowd:

The Groove Crew has stepped up to make this grand event even bigger and better than ever. What these wonderful people have shown me this past year is that passion can turn hard work into a beautiful such as Groovefest, and Groovefest is hard work. But what any of the Groove Crew will tell you is they do it for the love of it. They also have shown me what can be done, and it can be done without me; which is nice to know, but I don’t want that to happen any time soon.

… Groovefest is my life and these people are my family, and I am forever indebted to them and what they have done and what Groovefest has become … I also want to thank Lisa for keeping me together and going I would not be here if it weren’t for her.

Pushing through to the end of the letter with her silent husband’s reassuring hand on her shoulder, Lisa Cretsinger’s voice only broke for a moment.

Ryan Kay running the sound at the Groovefest Music and Art Festival, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News
Ryan Kay running the sound at the Groovefest Music and Art Festival, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News

As she welled up at the gratitude her hardworking husband composed for her to read to the crowd, she wore her heart on her sleeve – a rare, public moment of emotion from a strong and sometimes almost stoic woman.

Despite the humble founder’s illness and his wife’s exhaustion, the event went off without a hitch. Band after Band took the stage from the early afternoon well into the darkness both Friday and Saturday in the Main Street Park. The tiny park was flooded with music and art lovers from all over who gather together each year to celebrate the Groovefest Music and Art Festival.

Much of the accolades were given to the Groove Crew’s Peggy Green who took up the organizing of the bands when the founder himself, “Pa Groove,” was too week to work through all of the torrent of requests that pile in every year.

Lounging at the park enjoying the music at the Groovefest Music and Art Festival, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News
Lounging at the park enjoying the music at the Groovefest Music and Art Festival, Main Street Park, Cedar City, Utah, June 27, 2015 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News

Green really stepped up to the plate, Lisa Cretsinger said, while reading her hubby’s letter to the crowd. She took the reins and made sure that no matter what, the fans and the bands would not be disappointed.
Green’s husband, Dennis Green said, he was so proud of his wife and the hard work that she had done – without taking any of the credit for all of the hours he put in himself.

The energy of the audience was a powerhouse of love that rippled through the park and back to both the Groove Crew and the Cretsinger’s, and as the week-long fun and festivities came to a soft close audience members by the hundreds helped to gather city chairs and garbage returning the love back to the team who made it all possible.

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Email: cmiller@stgnews.com

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2015, all rights reserved.

 

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