Old Tyme Fiddlers – an enduring musical tradition

Old Tyme Fiddlers have been around Quesnel for 45 years and still welcome new members of all ages.

The Old Tyme Fiddlers have been welcoming musicians for the past 45 years.

Jean has been accompanying the Old Tyme Fiddlers for the past 45 years.

The organization was started by Alvin and Margaret MacLeod, Max Morgan, Ted Kaziner and Omer Porter in 1970. A couple of years later they got the Charter and registered in Victoria.

Shortley after that Frank Hennessey and John and Audrey Veer brought the club alive with music.

The group still holds dances on the first Saturday of the month and everyone is welcome. You can waltz, foxtrot or two-step or take part in the pattern dances which the younger people enjoy. It’s a real family gathering.

The $10 admission includes refreshments and the dances are held at the Legion from 7 – 9 p.m. Phone Jean Gelinas, 250-992-5081 for more information.

The highlights of the year for the Old Tyme Fiddlers Association is the Fiddle Camp. It’s always scheduled the third week of July and there are lessons for guitar, mandolin, keyboard but the fiddle is king and the concerts and square dances held in the evenings bring out the crowds.

This camp began in Wells 23 years ago. During the first four years, the camp drew an average of 25 students. Then it was moved to Gavin Lake and now hosts 250 students (half of these are under 20 years) and 20 instructors.

In addition this vibrant group holds group lessns on Monday evenings at 6:30 p.m. and private lessons are available from Adam Johnson and Anita Mamela.

Marian Gillard is a seniors’ advocate and regular Observer columnist.

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