YADKINVILLE — Musicians from all around the area gathered Saturday at Yadkinville Elementary School for the annual Yadkin Valley Bluegrass Convention. The day began with youth, some as young as 3-years old, competing in solo performances on guitar, fiddle, mandolin and upright bass. The band competition was slated to begin in the evening and was expected to go to nearly midnight.
The event is a tradition spanning close to 30 years, said Yadkin Arts Council President John Willingham.
“We look at it as a real family event and this year really demonstrates that as we have more kids than I’ve ever seen,” Willingham said.
He noted one young girl who was only 3 years and competing in the event.
“Unbelievable,” Willingham said. “We’re really proud of that fact. The youth component of this event is really growing.”
While the competition was happening inside the school’s multipurpose room, musicians were outside enjoying the sunshine and practicing for their turn on the stage.
Daniel Thrailkill, part of the band The Trailblazers, said they were looking forward to competing and mostly just having fun playing on stage.
Musicians Gary Saunders, Chad Richie and Linda Cabe called bluegrass music “everlasting,” “timeless” and “fun.” The three had just met at the convention, and decided on the spot to form a band to compete that night.
“The music touches your soul,” said Cabe.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter @RippleReporterK.