GALAX, Va. — Surry County was well-represented at the recent Galax Old Fiddlers’ Convention, including a first-place victory by The Slate Mountain Ramblers in old-time band competition.
The list of winners also reveals Richard Bowman, a member of that group based in Mount Airy, as placing second in the old-time fiddle category.
An estimated 40,000 fans and musicians were part of the 81st-annual event held earlier this month at Felts Park in Galax.
After winning third place in old-time band competition at Galax in 2015, The Slate Mountain Ramblers improved on that by taking home the top prize this year.
Twenty different competition categories were involved at the convention in all, along with an award given to the best-all-around performer, which was Ivy Phillips, a fiddler player from Chapmansboro, Tennessee.
The winner of the old-time fiddle contest in which Bowman placed second was Jake Krack of Marlington, West Virginia.
Others from Surry County who placed were:
• Donnie Scott of Mount Airy, fourth in the dobro category, which was won by Eddie Marrs of Princeton, West Virginia.
• Casey Driscoll, Mount Airy, sixth place in the bluegrass fiddle competition that was won by Phillips.
• Nancy Sluys of Westfield, 10th in the clawhammer banjo contest. Winning first place was Victor Furtado of Front Royal, Virginia.
• In addition to The Slate Mountain Ramblers winning the old-time band contest, The State Line Play Boys of Lowgap took fourth place in that division and The Pilot Mountain Bobcats, a Westfield-based group, ninth.
• Mary Claire Hooper of Elkin was fourth in youth bluegrass fiddle competition. Taking top honors was Kitty Amaral of Elk Creek, Virginia.