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Brazil Ragtime Fans Make Pilgrimage to Missouri


Tarcisio and Izilda Tamega and their daughter Gizel and son-in-law Paulo, from Sorocaba Brazil, had only one day and two nights in Sedalia, but we filled it well.  They had rooms at Bothwell Hotel where I met them.  Tarcisio was excited to show me photos of his collection of ragtime CDs and vinyl and how his kitchen is decorated with covers of ragtime music. He has purchased many items from our Foundation.We went to Fitter’s for supper where Tarcisio played the piano there, even though it was severely out of tune. We met the Sedalia Mayor there and he invited them to visit City Hall the next day.

​I picked them up about 9am the next day and we went across the street to see the Courthouse murals, then to the new plaque on 5th St, the Liberty Center, Maple Leaf Park, and the mural on 2nd St.  We went to City Hall, where met not only the mayor

but Chief DeGonia, who gave each of them a city coin and a pin.  We viewed the construction for the new police dept. on the way to Sacred Heart, where they were very impressed with the renovations (and left a nice donation for a calendar they took.)      Since three of the four were doctors, I took them to Bothwell Hospital, where they met the CEO and the recruiter Beth, who toured them around the cancer center. We met a couple of the doctors, too. They are from a city of 600,000 and were most impressed with the technology available in a town of Sedalia’s size.     

We ate lunch at El Tapatio (it was Taco Tuesday!) where they visited with Minerva (in Spanish) and really enjoyed their meals. On the way to the Depot, I gave them five minutes at Russell Stover, since Gizel expressed a desire for chocolate (she is pregnant!!!).   Later, they listened to my Depot presentation for the Leadership class, and then spent a long time in the museum. They also bought many ragtime items they didn’t already have, including the highway sign, a hurdy gurdy, and a bicycle jersey.      After the tour, we went to the fairgrounds and toured the Trail’s End monument, which they really liked.  I can’t begin to count the number of photos they took that day. Later we went to Forest Park to see my looms and Greg’s restored cars. It was suppertime when we took them back to Bothwell.    

They left early the next a.m. for St. Louis, where they had tickets for the Arch and the Joplin House. After 2 days there, they were to go to Branson where they had tickets for the Johnny Mathis concert.  Izilda has always been one of his biggest fans, so when they saw his concert schedule included Missouri, they made the arrangement to come to Sedalia too.      By the time they left town, Tarcisio assured me that he and his wife will be back for the 2018 festival.  I knew we had visitors to the festival from Japan and Scotland, but meeting the Tamega family really brought home to me how popular ragtime is around the world. 

Extra details: Gizel’s cats are named Scott and Bethena.

 By:  Kathleen Boswell | 11-17-2017

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