Stokes Fiddlers Convention to bring back tradition


First Posted: 10/2/2009

PINNACLE Musicians picked and rosined up their bows at the third annual Stokes County Fiddlers Convention and The Old Timers Cup at the Jomeokee Campground last night. The convention continues tonight with awards being given out to the best groups and individual musicians.
Ralph McGee, the grandson of Ralph Lionel McGee, wanted to continue the tradition of having a local fiddlers convention in honor of his grandfather who passed away in 1996.
In the 70s there were fiddlers conventions about every weekend around here. I just took it upon myself to try to bring some of that old-time tradition back to this area, said McGee.
We are planning on having a huge show tomorrow night, said McGee of Saturday nights competition. He expects to have between 40 and 60 bands and individuals competing tonight.
Kenny Grubbs and Charlie Hawks practiced in the parking area as they waited on the rest of their band, Sugarloaf, to come to the competition Friday. The group won second place in the Mayberry Idle competition in Mount Airy last weekend.
David Sowards and his namesake band also practiced while waiting to go on stage. He said the group has been together for about a year and its their first time at the Stokes Fiddlers Convention.
Im glad they are having a competition close to home, Sowards said.
The cost per person is $10, but McGee said, We will give your money back after you play.
Competition tonight will include these categories: fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin, best band and best youth, which is for kids 14 and younger including all instruments. Cash prizes, trophies and ribbons will be given out to the winners tonight.
The big prize of the evening will be The Old Timers Cup, which will be given to the best all-around entertainer. The winner will receive $200 and a trophy. The second place best Old-Time Band and Bluegrass Band will get $100 and a ribbon. Third place will win $75 and a ribbon.
In all other categories, first place wins $100 and trophy, second place brings $75 and a ribbon, third place gets $50 and a ribbon.
The convention continues today starting at 6 p.m. The campground is just west of U.S. 52 at the Pinnacle exit.
For more information go to www.jomeokee.net or myspace.com/jokeokeemusicfestival or call 983-4951.
Contact Mondee Tilley at [email protected] or at 719-1930.

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