Skaggs at Fiddlers

A sea of thousands greets Ricky Skaggs Friday at the 53rd annual Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention. Skaggs and his band Kentucky Thunder gave two performances Friday. Athens native Bradley Walker performed Saturday, but his performance was cut short because of rain. Inclement weather also forced a cancellation of the final competitive events.

Limestone County has been in dire need of rain for weeks, and it finally arrived Saturday evening. Unfortunately, it impacted the final competitive events of the annual Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention.

Instead of having champions in each category, Athens State University spokesman Chris Latham said prize money was evenly distributed among the finalists.

The rain and storms were a marked change from the first two days of the convention, which brought temperatures in the 90s. Despite the heat, tens of thousands of people attended the 53rd annual event.

Friday evening featured two performances by Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder. Saturday's headlining performance by Athens' own Bradley Walker was cut short because of the weather.

Convention winners

Finalists in each category were as follows:

Harmonica

• First: Micah McCreary of Scottsboro;

• Second: Rob Pearcy of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Third: Eddis Ogle from Wytheville, Virginia;

• Fourth: Tom Fant of Arab; and

• Fifth: Barry Bailey of Cedar Bluff.

Mandolin

• First: Joel Whittinghill of Bowling Green, Kentucky;

• Second: Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Third: Justin Branum of Murfreesboro, Tennessee;

• Fourth: David Akins of Pisgah; and

• Fifth: Rick Rorex of Huntsville.

Bluegrass banjo

• First: Wiley Bailey of Cullman;

• Second: Nicolas Foster of Florence;

• Third: Jacob Littleton of Jemison;

• Fourth: Charles Butler of Nashville, Tennessee; and

• Fifth: Daniel Mason of New Market.

Dobro

• First: Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Second: Rob Pearcy of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Third: Steven Smiley of Harvest;

• Fourth: Roman Locklear of Hayden; and

• Fifth: Weston Stewart of Anderson.

Dulcimer

• First: Rob Pearcy of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Second: Jan Hammond of Athens;

• Third: Bobby Nobley of Wedowee;

• Fourth: Lou Beasley of Athens; and

• Fifth: Roger Patterson of Athens.

Old-time singing

• First: Allan Daniel of Woodland;

• Second: Christiana Littleton of Jemison;

• Third: Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Fourth: Angelica Branum of Murfreesboro, Tennessee; and

• Fifth: Tammy Frederick of Auburn.

Beginning fiddler (10 and under)

• First: Hailey Bryant of Greenbrier, Tennessee;

• Second: Noah Goebel of Elkton, Kentucky;

• Third: Anna Sharpe of Memphis, Tennessee;

• Fourth: Ty McMeans of Athens; and

• Liam Bricken of Woodstock.

Apprentice fiddler (11-15)

• First: David Lin of Lexington, Kentucky;

• Second: Devon Waite of Ridgetop, Tennessee;

• Third: Meredith Hudson of Gordo;

• Fourth: Lily Beall of Brentwood, Tennessee; and

• Fifth: Abby Vaughn of Berry.

Beginner musician (12 and under)

• First: Ettore Buzzini of Mooresville, North Carolina;

• Second: Noah Goebel of Elkton, Kentucky;

• Third: Conner McMeans of Athens;

• Fourth: Gianluca Cipollari of Hanceville; and

• Fifth: Aaron Holmes of Anniston.

Guitar (fingerpicking)

• First: Josh Taylor of Madison;

• Second: Barry Waldrep of Wedowee;

• Third: Justin Echols of Decatur; and

• Fourth: Allen Watkins of Huntsville.

Old-time banjo

• First: Luke Richardson of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee;

• Second: Daniel Rothwell of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Third: Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Fourth: Laura Vines of Irondale; and

• Fifth: Jonathan Nelson of Mobile.

Guitar (flat-picking)

• First: Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Second: Joel Whittinghill of Bowling Green, Kentucky;

• Third: Rob Pearcy of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Fourth: Michael Williams of Joppa; and

• Fifth: Kevin Atkins of Pinson.

Classic old-time fiddler (no particular order)

• Daniel Rothwell of Smyrna, Tennessee;

• Lisa Richardson of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee;

• Christiana Littleton of Jemison;

• Walter King of Elkins, West Virginia; and

• Luke Richardson of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee.

Senior fiddler (55 and older; no particular order)

• Brent Young of Anna, Texas;

• Tom Fonville of Flint, Texas;

• T-bone Daniels of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee;

• Michael S. Meyer of Springfield, Missouri; and

• Marcia Denton of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

Bluegrass band (no particular order)

• Bounds & Determined from Northport;

• Kentucky Ridge of Reynolds Station, Kentucky;

• Fansico's of Joppa;

• Rollin Rock of Harvest; and

• Justin Koch of Pensacola, Florida.

Junior fiddler (16-34; no particular order)

• Ivy Phillips of Chapmansboro, Tennessee;

• Andrew Lin of Lexington, Kentucky;

• Benjamin Lin of Lexington, Kentucky;

• Matthew Lin of Lexington, Kentucky; and

• Steven Stewart of Owensboro, Kentucky.

Old-time band (no particular order)

• Neon Brothers of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee;

• Slim Chance Band of Smyrna, Tennessee; and

• New Bedford County High Ballers of Unionville, Tennessee.

Intermediate fiddler (age 35-54; no particular order)

• Justin Branum of Murfreesboro, Tennessee;

• Johnny Ray Watts of Lineville; and

• Joel Whittinghill of Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Buck dancing (no particular order)

• Courtney Derryberry of Unionville, Tennessee;

• Tommy Jackson of Franklin, Tennessee;

• Ty McMeans of Athens;

• Palmer Osborn of Decatur; and

• Meredith Hudson of Gordo.

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