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Fiddlers compete Saturday in Atmore

ATMORE – The Atmore Rotary Club’s 29th annual Fiddlers Convention is scheduled for July 19 and is at a new location this year. 

In past years the convention has been held at Escambia County High School, but because of renovations being carried out at ECHS, the event has been moved to Rachel Patterson Elementary School. 

“I think we will have a good turnout,” event coordinator Keith Castleberry said. “I just hope everybody goes to the right place.” 

For the past 28 years that the Fiddlers Convention has been held, only a few times has it not been at ECHS. Once it was at Flomaton and once it was at City Hall, Castleberry said.

Last year the Rotary Club upped the anti by setting prize money higher. The prize for first place fiddler jumped from $300 to $1,000 last year. This year that amount will stay at $1,000, Castleberry said. 

“For the fiddle first place is $1,000, second is $200 and third is $100,” he said. “The thing we’ve changed is the vocal bands and the bands. They’ll be $200 for first, $100 for second and $50 for third.” 

Last year vocalists and other bands were awarded $100 for first, $75 for second and $50 for third place.

Competition categories will remain the same this year also. Competition categories include, vocal groups, bands, dobro, banjo, guitar, mandolin and fiddlers.

There is one tune that will change though.

“We’re going to have a dulcimer exhibition and a bass guitar exhibition,” Castleberry said. “They aren’t going to be judged, but we’re going to see if there is enough interest and maybe they will be judged next time.” 

The house band, “Down Home,” will also remain the same this year.

Admission is $9 and children 12 and under are free. There will be barbeque along with other foods and refreshments at the event. 

Registration will begin July 19 at 10 a.m. and the fiddling will start at 2 p.m. 

For more information, call 368-2106 or email kcastleberry@securancegroup.com.