Athens Review, Athens, Texas

February 27, 2013

Fiddlin’ on Saturday

Old Fiddlers organizers announce shift in schedule

Jayson Larson
The Athens Review

FORNEY —

The 82nd Athens Old Fiddlers Reunion and Contest is officially on the radar.

Brookshires in Athens once again kicked off preparations for the annual event by presenting a check for $2,500 on Wednesday to Mary Ensign of the Athens Old Fiddlers Reunion.

“We’re once again glad to be a Platinum Sponsor of the event this year,” Brookshires Store Director Charles Beasley said. “This event has such a rich history here, and we’re looking forward to the fun.”

This year’s event will once again have all the fiddling, fun and funnel cakes you can handle, but there will be one big change. To better accommodate contestants, the decision has been made to hold the jam session on the last Friday, which falls on May 31 this year, with the contest to follow on Saturday, June 1.

All festivities will once again be held on the Henderson County Courthouse square, where they’ve been held each year since 1934 after large crowds forced the event to move from the Athens High School auditorium in 1933 (the first contest, in 1932, was held in Bethel).

Ensign said it was hard to make the decision to move the contest to Saturday, but added it should open the contest up to young fiddlers who previously couldn’t attend because they were in school on Fridays.

She said overall attendance may grow, as well, since many spectators won’t have to take off work to come.

“I really think it will be a better deal,” she said. “I’ve heard nothing but good things about changing it to Saturday. We’re still keeping with the tradition of having the event the last Friday in May, we’re just kicking it off with the jam session Friday night.”