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Waves of fans were on hand for the Seagrove Fiddlers’ Convention Saturday night in Seagrove.  Sandy Hatley / Randolph Hub

Now that's a convention!

SEAGROVE — The 68th Annual Seagrove Fiddlers’ Convention returned Saturday night to the gymnasium of Seagrove School after a three-year hiatus due to the COVID pandemic. New promoter Maxton Byrd and his committee were amazed at the large turnout. There were more than 500 in attendance with more than 50 entries in the five-plus-hour-long local bluegrass talent contest.


“We did it! It was great!” Byrd exclaimed. 


Byrd stepped up to the plate after the previous promoter, Linda Loggains, was unable to continue managing the event due to health-related issues. Byrd, with the assistance of his 20-plus member committee, labored to make the annual music event return, not knowing how it well it would go after the three-year break.


“We sold out of everything after intermission, which is a good thing,” said Mark Waisner, who helped the Southwestern Randolph Choral Program man the concession stand. 


Winners came from as far away as New Caledonia (an island in the south Pacific) and West Virginia. Ages ranged from 8 to 92 years old.


Winners for the 2023 Seagrove Fiddlers’ Convention were:

BAND: first-Last Hour, second-Once in a Blue Moon, third-Flatts Creek.

FIDDLE: first-Kayleigh Stills, second-John Hofmann, third-Ervin Hatley.

BANJO: first-Jack Ritter, second-Noah Stills, third-Danny Bowers.

MANDOLIN: first-Gary Pressley, second-Dwayne Runyon, third-Jonah Chaney.

GUITAR: first-Tommy Chandler, second-Jake Goforth, third-CH Lineberry.

BASS: first-Jimmy Damron, second-Eddie Hammer, third-John Fogleman.

DOBRO: first-Sandy Hatley, second-Pammy Davis, third-James Paquette.

VOCAL: first-Morgan Brown, second-Brooklyn Nicole, third-Bailey Wagner.

MISCELLANEOUS: first-Eva Casstevens-dulcimer, second-Danny Casstevens-dulcimer, third-Jean Luc Leroux-vocal in French.

BUCK DANCE: first-Jimmie Harrington (age 92), second-Taylor Lingren, third-Brad Davis.

MOST PROMISING TALENT (16 & under): first-Elliott King-guitar (age 11), second-Cameron Edenfield-banjo (age 13), third-Alexander Ferranti-fiddle (age 10). 

16 & UNDER VOCAL: first-Chelsea Edenfield (age 11), second-JD Hussey (age 13).


The annual Alan Perdue Memorial Bluegrass Appreciation Award was presented for the third year. Previous winners include Mrs. JD Chrisco in 2021 and Linda Loggains in 2022.


This year, the recipient was the Allred Family. 


The Allreds of Cedar Falls have been an integral part of the convention for over five decades. Brothers, Vernon and Rick, along with Vernon’s son, Derrick, entertained during intermission. Accompanying them were Nathan Aldridge on fiddle, Danny Bowers on banjo and Travis Brady on bass. The award was presented in their honor and in memory of Vernon’s son, Matthew, who passed away in 2006 at the age of 35. The Perdue family presented the award to the family.  


“What an incredible night! Thanks to the Lord and every person who participated from the people who made it happen to every person who attended! Loved it!” Said Janice Perdue, mother of the late Alan Perdue.


“It was a wonderful night of fellowship,” emcee Big T Lassiter said.


Plans are already under way for next year’s competition.


The next area contest is the Highfalls Fiddlers’ Convention at North Moore School on April 1. Competition kicks off at 6 p.m. Registration runs from 4:30-6. More than $1,800 will be awarded to winners in band, fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin, singer, dancing, bass, dobro, piano/miscellaneous and most promising talent. The Second Annual Theron Caviness Best Banjo Award will be presented in his memory. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children 6-12.