Local News Articles

Gubernatorial Candidate Karl Dean to Speak at DeKalb Democratic Party Potluck Dinner

July 3, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Karl Dean

Former Nashville Mayor and Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Karl Dean will be in Smithville for a potluck dinner hosted by the DeKalb County Democratic Party on Thursday, July 27 at 6:00 p.m. at the high school.

Dean will speak at the event along with United States Senate candidate James Mackler and Holly McCall, the Recruitment Coordinator for Emerge Tennessee. Music for the evening will be provided by Jake Hoot.

“I decided to run for Governor of Tennessee because I think we need to bring economic opportunity to every Tennessean,” said Dean. “ Tennessee is a great state that is poised to continue moving forward if we focus on the right priorities. As Governor, I want to create opportunity for all Tennesseans, regardless of where they live, and that starts with education and jobs.”

“Having managed a city through the Great Recession and a historic flood, I learned that problem-solving doesn’t begin with one person. I also know there is no Democratic or Republican solution to problems. It begins with all of us working together and that’s the foundation on which we’re going to build this campaign,” Dean continued.

“A good job and a great education are not rural or urban issues, they are Tennessee issues. As governor, I will not rest until a good job, thriving business, and quality education are the standard in Tennessee”.

According to the Dean Campaign, “Karl Dean led the city of Nashville to unprecedented economic prosperity that it’s experiencing today. As Mayor for eight years, he led the city through the Great Recession and the devastating floods in 2010, with Nashville coming out stronger as a result. Karl’s pragmatic approach to leadership focused on jobs, education and public safety”.

“He kept taxes low while making significant investments in public infrastructure, paving the way for new economic development in all parts of Davidson County. He made business recruitment and retention a priority. He increased funding for public schools and teacher pay, invested in after school programs and brought more public school choices to Nashville. Karl’s experience makes him the right person to bring the same opportunities to every Tennessean,” according to the campaign.

Fiddler's Jamboree Craft Awards Presented

July 3, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Phillip Howard of Sparta received the "Best of Show" award for his display of art work and furnishings crafted from repurposed tailgates, truck cabs, pallets, house doors, benches, etc.
The "Best Newcomer" Award went to Rachel Moore of Pleasantview for her display of repurposed old books. “I take the covers off and I re-bind them with new paper. You can use them as sketch books, journals or anything you wish. You are only limited by your imagination. I also make paper flowers. I take pages from books and make forever flower bouquets,” said Moore.
Roger Pfalzgraf of Staunton, Illinois received the "Best Display" award for his three string guitars made mainly from cigar boxes, bed pans, oil cans, and lunch boxes.

The annual Fiddler's Jamboree Craft Awards were presented Saturday

Phillip Howard of Sparta received the "Best of Show" award for his display of art work and furnishings crafted from repurposed tailgates, truck cabs, pallets, house doors, benches, etc.

The "Best Newcomer" Award went to Rachel Moore of Pleasantview for her display of repurposed old books. “I take the covers off and I re-bind them with new paper. You can use them as sketch books, journals or anything you wish. You are only limited by your imagination. I also make paper flowers. I take pages from books and make forever flower bouquets,” said Moore.

Roger Pfalzgraf of Staunton, Illinois received the "Best Display" award for his three string guitars made mainly from cigar boxes, bed pans, oil cans, and lunch boxes.

The awards were presented by Emma Adkins, the Fiddler's Jamboree Director of Crafts along with Olivia Norton and Ellie Adkins.

(TOP PHOTO)
BEST OF SHOW: Phillip Howard of Sparta
PICTURED: Olivia Norton, Phillip Howard, and Emma and Ellie Adkins

(SECOND PHOTO FROM TOP)
BEST NEWCOMER AWARD went to Rachel Moore of Pleasantview
PICTURED: Olivia Norton, Rachel Moore, and Emma and Ellie Adkins

(BOTTOM PHOTO)
BEST DISPLAY: Roger Pfalzgraf of Staunton, Illinois
PICTURED: Ellie and Emma Adkins, Roger Pfalzgraf, and Olivia Norton

Ivy Phillips Repeats as Jamboree Fiddling Grand Champion

July 2, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Ivy Phillips Repeats as Jamboree Fiddling Grand Champion. Pictured with Jamboree Coordinator Sam Stout
Junior Old-Time Appalachian Flatfoot Dance (Ages up to 39): First Place-Chris Stewart of Lebanon
Senior Old-Time Appalachian Flatfoot Dance (Ages 40 & Over): First Place-Ruth Alpert of Santa Barbara, California
Senior Buck Dancing (Ages 40 & Over): First Place- Ruth Alpert of Santa Barbara, California
Senior Clogging (Ages 40 & Over): First Place-Tammy Scruggs of Gallatin
Bluegrass Banjo: First Place-Tyler Collins of Allons, Tennessee
Junior Fiddlers (Ages 13-39) and Contest Fiddle: First Place-Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro
Flat Top Guitar: First Place- Tyler Andal of Nashville
Bluegrass Band: First Place- Mountain Cove Bluegrass of Signal Mountain
Senior Fiddlers ( Ages 40 & Over): First Place- Tony Haley of Mount Juliet
Contest Fiddle for the Neil Dudney Award: First place-Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro. The award was presented to Phillips by Dudney's grandsons Dylan, Ethan, and Brandon Shaw and great grandson Carson Shaw.

Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee has repeated as the Grand Champion Fiddler of the Smithville Fiddler’s Jamboree and Crafts Festival. Phillips, who won the title for the first time last year, took home the Berry C. Williams Memorial Award Saturday night after the Grand Finale Fiddle-Off between the best Junior and Senior Fiddler. The two day festival came to a close a few minutes before midnight.

Phillips made it to the fiddle off by winning, for the second year in a row, the Junior Fiddling competition and she won the Grand Championship by beating the winner of the Senior Fiddling contest Tony Haley of Mount Juliet. Phillips also repeated as the winner of the Contest Fiddle competition and the Neil Dudney Award. She received that award from members of Dudney’s family. Dudney is a former long time Coordinator of the Fiddler’s Jamboree.

Phillips is a two time Jamboree fiddling champion of the National Championship for Country Musician Beginners in 2012 and 2013.

Winners in the Saturday session of the Fiddler's Jamboree are as follows:

Junior Old-Time Appalachian Flatfoot Dance (Ages up to 39): First Place-Chris Stewart of Lebanon; Second Place- Jason Wade of Paris, Tennessee; and Third Place- Hillary Klug of Shelbyville.

Senior Old-Time Appalachian Flatfoot Dance (Ages 40 & Over): First Place-Ruth Alpert of Santa Barbara, California; Second Place- Danny Campbell of Murfreesboro; and Third Place- Eileen Stewart of Cumberland City, Tennessee.

Senior Buck Dancing (Ages 40 & Over): First Place- Ruth Alpert of Santa Barbara, California; Second Place Traci Warren of Burns, Tennessee; and Third Place-Tommie Scruggs, Jr. of Hartsville.

Senior Clogging (Ages 40 & Over): First Place-Tammy Scruggs of Gallatin; Second Place- Darrin Stryker of Crossville; and Third Place- Tommy Jackson of Franklin.

Bluegrass Banjo: First Place-Tyler Collins of Allons, Tennessee; Second Place-Trevor Holder of Ringgold, Georgia; and Third Place- Kurt Stephenson of Dyersburg

Junior Fiddlers (Ages 13-39): First Place-Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro; Second Place- Hillary Klug of Shelbyville; and Third Place- Tyler Andal of Nashville.

Flat Top Guitar: First Place- Tyler Andal of Nashville; Second Place-Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro; and Third Place-Daniel Amick of Centerville.

Contest Fiddle (Neil Dudney Award): First Place- Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro; Second Place- Tyler Andal of Nashville; and Third Place- Hillary Klug of Shelbyville. The Neil Dudney Award was presented to Phillips by Dudney's grandsons Dylan, Ethan, and Brandon Shaw and great grandson Carson Shaw.

Bluegrass Band: First Place- Mountain Cove Bluegrass of Signal Mountain; Second Place- Lonesome Highway of Bumpus Mills, Tennessee; and Third Place-Blue Collar Bluegrass of Sparta.

Senior Fiddlers ( Ages 40 & Over): First Place- Tony Haley of Mount Juliet; Second Place- Marcia Denton of Murfreesboro; and Third Place- Richard Dahl of Logan, New Mexico

Square Dancing: First Place-Harpeth River of Franklin; Second Place- Rhythym N Motion of Cookeville ; and Third Place- Sarah's Stompers of Dickson.

A Henry, Tennessee girl won the top Jamboree award Saturday as the best fiddler in the National Championship for Country Musician Beginners.

Iris Shepherd won the coveted James G. "Bobo" Driver Memorial Award, named for the man who started the children's competition during the 1980's as part of the annual Fiddler's Jamboree and Crafts Festival. Driver's son Jimmy Driver and granddaughter Kim Luton presented the award to Shepherd.

Meanwhile Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar was named "Entertainer of the Year". The award is presented to the best overall instrumental entertainer among winners in the dobro guitar, mandolin, five string banjo, and flat top guitar competition.

Chunn placed first in the Mandolin and Clogging competition; second in Dobro Guitar and Buck Dancing, and third place in the Fiddle and Flat Top Guitar contests.

(VIEW VIDEO BELOW OF SATURDAY'S SQUARE DANCING WINNER HARPETH RIVER OF FRANKLIN)

The National Championship for Country Musician Beginners showcases the talents of children up to age twelve in seven categories of competition.

(VIEW SEPARATE STORY FOR PHOTOS OF WINNERS)

This year's winners are as follows:

Fiddle: First Place- Iris Shepherd of Henry, Tennessee; Second Place- Hailey Bryant of Grenbriar; and Third Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar.

Buck Dancing: First Place- Kaelin Wade of Paris, Tennessee; Second Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbrier, and Third Place- Jacob Ferrell of Dickson

Clogging: First Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbrier; Second Place- Arlee Fowlkes of Hurricane Mills, Tennessee; and Third Place- Emily Brown of Hartsville.

Dobro Guitar: First Place- Maddie McKenney of Cullman, Alabama; Second Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar; and Third Place- Darrah Ramsey of Smithville.

Mandolin: First Place-Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar; Second Place-Maddie McKenney of Cullman, Alabama; and Third Place- Kevin Beddingfield of Flag Pond, Tennessee.

Five String Banjo: First Place- Conner Derryberry of Shelbyville; Second Place- Cooper Brown of Smithville; and Third Place- Kevin Beddingfield of Flag Pond, Tennessee

Flat Top Guitar: First Place- Robert Wheeler of Smithville; Second Place-Mary Davis of Knoxville; and Third Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar

Tennessee Mafia Jug Band Receives Jamboree's "Blue Blaze Award" (VIEW VIDEO HERE)

July 2, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Tennessee Mafia Jug Band Receives Jamboree's "Blue Blaze Award"

The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band became the fourth annual recipient of the Fiddlers' Jamboree's "Blue Blaze Award" Saturday evening.

Members of the band received the award from Fiddlers' Jamboree Coordinator Sam Stout and Shan Burklow, who introduced the group. The band then entertained the Jamboree crowd.

The Fiddler’s Jamboree “Blue Blaze Award” is given to a musician or band who is actively cultivating a love of bluegrass music. Previous winners are Darrin Vincent of Dailey and Vincent, Sierra Hull, and Danny Roberts of the Grascals.

The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band includes guitar picker Mike Armistead, banjo player Leroy Troy, fiddler Dan Kelly, Ernie Sykes, Kent Blanton on the bass fiddle, and Dobro player Mike Webb. The overalls-clad band has appeared on the Opry, at Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center, at The Station Inn and at numerous other venues, playing boisterous songs like “Too Old to Cut the Mustard,” “What a Waste of Good Corn Liquor” and “Slide Them Jugs Down the Mountain.”

This frolicking sixsome brightens up the stage with rib-tickling old time tunes. They not only know the music, they wear the costumes, tell corny jokes, and even do slapstick gags.

Leroy Troy is a regular on the weekly Marty Stuart television show on RFD TV and the entire band is often featured on the show.

(VIEW VIDEO OF THE PERFORMANCE BELOW)

M2U02481 from dwayne page on Vimeo.

Indiana Man Wins Fiddler 5K Race (VIEW VIDEO HERE)

July 1, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Sean Edwards of Carmel, Indiana was the overall winner of the Fiddler 5K and Fun Run Saturday. He ran the course in 19:27. (Photo by Bill Luton of Luton Photography)
Brooklyn Edwards of Carmel, Indiana won the Fiddler 5K and Fun Race race among females on Saturday. She ran the course in 19:46. (Photo by Bill Luton of Luton Photography)
One-Mile Fun Run (age 12 and younger): TOP MALE: Jon Andrew Bryson of Woodbury at 7:25 (Photo by Bill Luton of Luton Photography)
One-Mile Fun Run (age 12 and younger): TOP FEMALE: Claire Evans of Alamo, Tennessee at 7:42 (Photo by Bill Luton of Luton Photography)

An Indiana man was the overall winner of the 19th Annual Fiddler 5K and One-Mile Fun Run Saturday in Smithville.

Sean Edwards of Carmel, Indiana ran the course in 19:27.

Meanwhile Brooklyn Edwards of Carmel, Indiana won the race among females. She ran the course in 19:46

Winners in other categories were:

TOP MALE MASTERS (Age 40 and older): Lee Piccirillo of Murfreesboro at 21:21

TOP FEMALE MASTERS (Age 40 and older): Tracy Watson at 22:42

One-Mile Fun Run (age 12 and younger) winners:

TOP MALE: Jon Andrew Bryson of Woodbury at 7:25

TOP FEMALE: Claire Evans of Alamo, Tennessee at 7:42

The 19th Annual Fiddler 5K and One-Mile Fun Run featured 324 participants.

Funds raised will support Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County

To learn more visit www.fiddler5k.com

Iris Shepherd Crowned Best Beginner Fiddler at Jamboree

July 1, 2017
by: 
Dwayne Page
Iris Shepherd Crowned Best Beginner Fiddler at Jamboree
Iris Shepherd won the coveted James G. "Bobo" Driver Memorial Award for being named the best Beginner Fiddler at the Jamboree. Driver's son Jimmy Driver and granddaughter Kim Luton presented the award to Shepherd
Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar was named "Entertainer of the Year".
Buck Dancing: First Place- Kaelin Wade of Paris, Tennessee
Clogging: First Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbrier
Dobro Guitar: First Place- Maddie McKenney of Cullman, Alabama
Mandolin: First Place-Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar
Five String Banjo: First Place- Conner Derryberry of Shelbyville
Flat Top Guitar: First Place- Robert Wheeler of Smithville

A Henry, Tennessee girl won the top Jamboree award Saturday as the best fiddler in the National Championship for Country Musician Beginners.

Iris Shepherd won the coveted James G. "Bobo" Driver Memorial Award, named for the man who started the children's competition during the 1980's as part of the annual Fiddler's Jamboree and Crafts Festival. Driver's son Jimmy Driver and granddaughter Kim Luton presented the award to Shepherd.

Meanwhile Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar was named "Entertainer of the Year". The award is presented to the best overall instrumental entertainer among winners in the dobro guitar, mandolin, five string banjo, and flat top guitar competition.

Chunn placed first in the Mandolin and Clogging competition; second in Dobro Guitar and Buck Dancing, and third place in the Fiddle and Flat Top Guitar contests.

The National Championship for Country Musician Beginners showcases the talents of children up to age twelve in seven categories of competition.

This year's winners are as follows:

Fiddle: First Place- Iris Shepherd of Henry, Tennessee; Second Place- Hailey Bryant of Grenbriar; and Third Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar.

Buck Dancing: First Place- Kaelin Wade of Paris, Tennessee; Second Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbrier, and Third Place- Jacob Ferrell of Dickson

Clogging: First Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbrier; Second Place- Arlee Fowlkes of Hurricane Mills, Tennessee; and Third Place- Emily Brown of Hartsville.

Dobro Guitar: First Place- Maddie McKenney of Cullman, Alabama; Second Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar; and Third Place- Darrah Ramsey of Smithville.

Mandolin: First Place-Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar; Second Place-Maddie McKenney of Cullman, Alabama; and Third Place- Kevin Beddingfield of Flag Pond, Tennessee.

Five String Banjo: First Place- Conner Derryberry of Shelbyville; Second Place- Cooper Brown of Smithville; and Third Place- Kevin Beddingfield of Flag Pond, Tennessee

Flat Top Guitar: First Place- Robert Wheeler of Smithville; Second Place-Mary Davis of Knoxville; and Third Place- Brayden Chunn of Greenbriar

The Fiddler's Jamboree will conclude later tonight.

Finals are upcoming in the following categories:

*Junior Old Time Appalachian Flatfoot dance (ages up to 39)

*Senior Old Time Appalachian Flatfoot dance ( ages 40 and over)

*Senior Buckdancing (ages 40 and over)

*Senior Clogging (ages 40 and over)

*Bluegrass Banjo

*Junior Fiddlers (ages 13-39)

*Flat Top Guitar

*Contest Fiddle for the Neil Dudney Award

*Bluegrass Band*

*Senior Fiddlers (ages 40 and over)

*Square Dancing (4 Couples-8 Total Dancers).

The winners of the Junior and Senior Fiddling competition will square off for the Grand Champion Award, the Berry C. Williams Memorial Trophy at the conclusion of the festival.

The Jamboree Blue Blaze Award will be presented at 5:00 p.m. to recognize a band that is actively cultivating a love of bluegrass music. This year’s winner is the Tennessee Mafia Jug Band.

WJLE will broadcast the on-stage entertainment LIVE on AM 1480/ FM 101.7 and LIVE streaming at www.wjle.com.

In addition to music and dancing competitions onstage, the Fiddlers Jamboree also features dozens of crafts displayed along the downtown streets, plenty of delicious foods for sale at local food booths, and lots of shade tree picking under trees around the town square.

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