June 1, 2018
By: Dwayne Page
Smithville and DeKalb County’s largest two day tourist event is only one month away
The 47th Annual Smithville Fiddlers’ Jamboree and Crafts Festival will be held Friday and Saturday, July 6th & 7th. The Festival begins at 9:00 am each day, and continues until the final competition has been awarded. With over 35 music and dance categories, streets full of hand-made crafts, and over a dozen food booths, there is something for everyone at the Jamboree. You have to experience it in person…come and see the Jamboree!
Preliminaries will be held in the following categories on Friday, July 6:
Old Time Appalachian Folksinging (Solo); Junior Clogging (ages 13-39); Junior Buck Dancing (ages 13-39); Old-Time Appalachian Folksinging (Duet, Trio, Quartet); Dobro Guitar; Mountain Dulcimer; Hammer Dulcimer; Novelty Event (Spoon Clacking, Jug Blowing, Washboard, Tub, Saws-Appalachian Related Only); Autoharp, Gospel Singing (Solo); Country Harmonica; Old Time Banjo; Youth Square Dancing (4 Couples-8 Total Dancers); Gospel Singing (Duet,Trio, and Quartet); Mandolin; and Old Time Fiddle Band.
The top three acts in each category will be called back for the finals on Friday night and a first, second, and third place will be awarded.
A United States flag and a Tennessee State flag will be presented on Friday evening. The flags, which have flown over the state capitol, go to the persons who travel the greatest distances, both from inside and outside the country, to get here. The flags will be presented by State Senator Mark Pody and State Representatives Terri Lynn Weaver and Clark Boyd.
The Smithville Community Chorus is expected to perform with a variety of patriotic songs.
Fiddler’s Jamboree Craft Awards will be presented during the weekend for “Best of Show”, “Best Appalachian Craft”, “Best Newcomer”, and “Best Craft Display”
On Saturday, July 7, preliminaries will be held 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); and Square Dancing (4 Couples-8 Total Dancers).
Preliminaries will be held in each event and then the top three finalists will be called back Saturday night to compete for first, second, and third place.
Award-winning fiddle player Michael Cleveland has been named the 2018 Blue Blaze Award Winner for the Smithville Fiddlers’ Jamboree & Crafts Festival and he will be accepting the award on Saturday, July 7th at 5pm followed by a mini-concert by Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper.
Last year, Harpeth River of Franklin won the Square Dancing Competition during the 2017 Smithville Fiddlers ‘ Jamboree and Crafts Festival
(VIEW VIDEO BELOW OF THEIR PERFORMANCE IN THE FINALS LAST YEAR)
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.
Last year Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee repeated as the Grand Champion Fiddler of the Smithville Fiddler’s Jamboree and Crafts Festival after first winning the title in 2016
(VIEW VIDEO BELOW OF HER PERFORMANCE DURING 2017 FIDDLE-OFF)
Meanwhile, the National Championship for Country Musician Beginners will be held Saturday afternoon, July 7 during the Jamboree featuring competitions for children, up to age twelve, in the categories of Buck Dancing, Clogging, Dobro Guitar, Mandolin, Five String Banjo, Flat Top Guitar, and Fiddle.
Preliminaries will be held in each event and then the top three finalists will be brought back to compete for first, second, and third place.
One child will receive the Best Overall Instrumental Entertainer Trophy Award and the top fiddler will get the James G. “Bobo” Driver Memorial Trophy.
Last year, Iris Shepherd of Henry, Tennessee won the top Jamboree award as the best fiddler in the National Championship for Country Musician Beginners.
In addition to the on-stage musical entertainment, the Fiddlers Jamboree will feature many crafts, plenty of delicious food; and lots of shade tree picking around the public square.
WJLE will broadcast most of the on-stage entertainment LIVE on AM 1480/ FM 101.7 and LIVE Streaming at www.wjle.com.
For more information on the festival, go to www.fiddlersjamboree.com