Fiddle Fest

Shown last year during the first day of a two-day event hosted by the Illinois Old Time Fiddlers Association are, from left, Karen Jennings of Charleston on bass, Ann Crawford of Terre Haute on fiddle, her father, Ralph White of Neoga, on banjo, and Jeff Derrickson of Mattoon on guitar.

Fiddle Fest, a celebration of the 55th annual Illinois Old Time Fiddle Contest, will kick off with a concert on Saturday night, Oct. 26, at the Effingham Performance Center (EPC). Featured bands are Hand Picked at 7 p.m., Motherlode at 8 p.m., and Firebox at 9 p.m. All three bands feature fiddlers. Admission is $5 plus tax.

On Sunday, Oct. 27, fiddlers from all over the state will converge on EPC to compete for the title of Grand Champion. The Illinois Old Time Fiddlers Association (IOTFA) is sponsoring the contest. Any fiddler who is a resident of Illinois is eligible to enter the contest and can do so on line at Fiddlers must report to the EPC before 12:30 to draw contest order. The contest begins promptly at 1 p.m. Audience admission is $5 plus tax.

Formed in 1965, the IOTFA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to reviving and furthering Old-Time Fiddle Music by preserving old-time tunes and fiddling techniques, and passing on this traditional form to the younger generation.

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