Gather round, Humboldt. Your Lost Coast Outpost has decided to battle our sheltered boredom by staging a little contest that is guaranteed to be loved and embraced by all and — exciting news! — the time has come to tell you about how this thing’s going to go down. Listen carefully, now!

First off, we’ll mention that LoCO has somehow managed to obtain a couple pretty sweet prizes: We’ve got one-night stays at both the Benbow Inn and the Inn at 2nd and C Streets that we are tasked with awarding to the general public. And what timing! We imagine you’re pretty sick of looking at your own walls, at this point. So let these fine, local, COVID-19-safety-precautions-complyin’ businesses lend you theirs for a night, amirite? 

Now the important part: How do you win one of these coveted prizes? Well, you’re going to have to sing for ‘em, kids. 

Introducing: LoCO’s Singing in Solitude Contest, where you, a bored and lonely Humboldt County resident, record yourself singing a love song of your choice in the hopes of securing fame, glory and a night somewhere else than your own damn house. 

Here are the specifics you need to know to conquer all:

  • Record an under-three-minute video of yourself singing a love song, one you’re super sure will win over the hearts and minds of your fellow Humboldt shut-ins. You can sing acapella or with musical backing. We really don’t care! Just be entertaining. 
  • At noon on Friday, Feb. 5, LoCO will launch the official Singing in Solitude Love Song Contest post on our Facebook page which we will link to on our site, here, to make it easy to find. 
  • Upload your video to the comment section of that Facebook post. One entry per singer. 
  • Wait for Humboldt’s judgmental social media users to discover your talent which they will then hopefully validate with a “like” or “heart” or whatever. 
  • At noon on Thursday, Feb. 11 an imaginary buzzer will sound signifying that the fun is done and the contest is over. At that point, LoCO will declare the troubadour who garnered the most reactions on their video as the winner. (We will weigh “like”s, “heart”s, “wow”s, etc. equally, in this instance.) Then, we’ll reach out to that person to see if they’d like to claim the night’s stay at the Benbow Inn or the night’s stay at the Inn at 2nd and C Streets (which, we should note, also comes with a $50 gift certificate to Phatsy Kline’s Parlor Lounge). The first runner-up will be rewarded with whichever prize the winner does not select.  

Does that all make sense? If not, read it again! If you still don’t get it, well, maybe that’s on us. Sorry.

And now a note to the people who will inevitably try to game the system: LoCO is watching you. Your attempts to pad your like count by logging into your various business/artist/political campaign pages will earn you LoCO’s scorn. Don’t. Rallying your crew is fine. Show us how popular you are. 

And now a message to the voters: Can I like multiple video entries? Hey, there’s no way LoCO can stop you from doing that, but every extra vote you make dilutes your other votes. Do what thou wilt. 

And finally, to the people who will find some aspect of this contest to complain about: Throw your own contest, you grump. We’re spreadin’ joy over here. 

Now, you may have noticed that LoCO is throwing these fancy rooms around in the days leading up to Valentine’s Day. We want to make it clear that you are not obligated to redeem your potential winnings on V-Day, but you totally could do that. Or save it for later. You’re the winner! You do you.

Anyway, that’s it! Hopefully this does not end up a total disaster! You have a couple nights to work up the nerve to be awesome and endearing in front of your housebound community. Good luck to all! We’re excited to see your faces again! Sing like our collective sanity depends on it! 

(P.S. For the love of all that is holy and good, horizontal video, please.) 

Note: Entrants must be human to be eligible to win. For other legal contest rules, see here.