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Our Valley 2011

ounds S of the henandoah


Like The River That Shares Its Name, Music Flows Through Valley Life

Thursday, May 26, 2011



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Our Valley 2011 Inside Music Of The Valley’s Settlers ............................ 4 Bluegrass Roots Run Deep .................................. 6

Page 12

Music Trail Highlights Heritage .......................... 7

Page 6 Joseph Funk’s Legacy .......................................... 8 The Best Medicine ................................................ 9

Page 14

Something To Toot About ................................. 12 Fond Memories From Dayton ............................13 High School Bands Nourish Love Of Music...... 14 Stonewall Band Linked To Valley History ....... 16

Page 16 Page 17

MACRoCk Rocks Rocktown ............................... 17 Statlers Stay True To Their Roots ...................... 18 Taking A Chance With Rock Lotto ..................... 23 County Fair Has Country Bent .............................27

Starts on Page 31

Best Of The Valley ........................................... 31--41

Page 44 At JMU, Greeks Play Key Support Role ............. 44


Harrisonburg, Va.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

From The Editor Music ... gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything. — Plato

Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world. — Martin Luther

Music has charms to soothe the savage breast. To soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak. — William Congreve

Take a music bath once or twice a week for a few seasons, and you will find that it is to the soul what the water bath is to the body. — Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

The ‘Universal Language’ Of Us All


HARRISONBURG Greek philosopher, an English playwright, a German theologian and an Ameri-

can jurist. The four individuals quoted above have little in common other than the inconsequential fact that they were all well-known enough to make it into a book of quotes. All four worked in different fields, lived in different times — from the 5th century B.C. to the 20th century

— and all hailed from different lands. But these disparate men are linked by at least one thing: A love of music. Like love itself, music transcends the ages, generations, cultures and continents. Indeed, it is a rare soul that is not stirred to emotion — be it joyful or mournful, rollicking or reflective — by music of one kind of another. Its language is as instinctive and as universal as the need to eat and breathe.

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From Nairobi, Kenya, where a young girl is practicing her cello, to Tokyo, Japan, where a baby is banging on a toy drum, to right here in Harrisonburg, where a banjo player taps his toe to the beat during a weekly bluegrass jam — music is, to borrow a phrase from Longfellow, the “universal language of mankind.” In this issue of Our Valley, we explore just some of the musical musings — not to mention musicians — from the central Shenandoah Valley’s

past and present, from music pioneer Joseph Funk and the trombone quartet Mr. Jefferson’s Bones, to the independent spirit of MACRoCk and the legendary Statler Brothers. Also in this issue is “Best of the Valley 2011,” which starts on Page 31 and includes the results of our annual readers’ poll in over 70 “best of” categories. — Rob Longley City Editor Daily News-Record




Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Valley Settlers Helped Birth Diversity Of Sound From Mennonites And Sacred Music To The Rich Sounds Of What Would Become Bluegrass, Music Was A Part Of Settlers‘ Lives By JOSHUA BROWN Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — If you were to walk into a special service at some of the area’s Mennonite churches, there’s a good chance you’d hear music that sounds a lot like what the first settlers in the Shenandoah Valley

listened to. “The old order Mennonites still sing now the way they sang back then,” said Sam Showalter, an organizer of local music events featuring the traditional genre. Europeans established the first permanent settlements in the Shenandoah Valley in the 1720s, al-

though the population growth was limited until after the Revolutionary War some 60 years later, said Gerald Brunk, a former history professor at Eastern Mennonite University. Lutheran and German Reformed religious groups were among the first to settle the area, but it was

the Mennonites who established some of the strongest musical traditions, historian Dale MacAllister said. Joseph Funk, a Rockingham County Mennonite, introduced his shapednote method of reading music in the 1830s. Funk’s “A Compilation of Genuine Church Music” — later re-

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named “The Harmonia Sacra” — and its hymns with shaped-note markings is largely credited with making religious songs accessible to the musical layman (See related story on Page 8). The method allowed Valley residents — most of whom were not trained in reading music — follow the tune and harmony of the hymns, Brunk said. After Funk died in 1862, Mennonite churches began annual singings of the “The Harmonia Sacra,” said Brunk. “That became known as the old folks’ sing because it was mostly older people who partici- Joseph Funk wrote “A Compilation pated in this singing,” of Genuine Church Music,” which later became known as “The See MUSIC Page 5 Harmonia Sacra.”

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Brunk said. But the songs Funk included in his songbook appealed to a wide audience, and served a variety of purposes, according to Showalter. Often on Saturdays, the young people would get together for sort of their social event and sing out of this ‘Harmonia Sacra’ book,” he said, noting that the youths would often take to dancing during their Saturday parties. Photos by Holly Marcus / Special to the DN-R

ABOVE: Jim Gaskins (right) plays the fiddle alongside his wife, Phyllis, on a Virginia-style dulcimer, during the Shenandoah Valley Bluegrass and Mountain Music Jam at James Madison University’s Memorial Hall. The Port Republic couple has been playing music for almost 40 years. RIGHT: Willie McCune of Verona tunes his guitar before playing at the Shenandoah Valley Bluegrass and Mountain Music Jam. Bluegrass was one of a variety of musical styles that grew out of the sounds of the early Valley settlers.

Other Music Styles Music historian Don Depoy said bluegrass and similar styles of music have their roots in the Valley’s 18th and 19th century frontier settlements. Paintings from old Virginia plantations, Depoy said, show whites and blacks gathering in the slave quarters to dance around musicians playing the banjo. Thomas Jefferson is quoted as early as 1781 as

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crediting blacks with bringing the “banjar” with them from Africa. While the music that would become known as mountain music and bluegrass could be found in the Shenandoah Valley, it wasn’t as widespread in the area early on because “the original settlements were made up of people who didn’t necessarily appreciate any kind of music,” Depoy said. The first settlers were concerned with caring for their farms and protecting themselves from Indian attacks, he said, so they “didn’t have an awful lot of time to sit around and play an instrument.” One popular pastime, though, that valley settlers participated in was

called “play-parties,” he said. Those events were social gatherings for children and adolescents that included a drama or game combined with a cappella music. “Those were those songs that were chanted without instrumentation,” Depoy said. Popular songs at such events included “Skip to My Lou” and “London Bridge” — still popular with the children of today. Social events such as hoedowns, which included square-dancing contests, didn’t begin to develop until later in the 19th and early 20th century, MacAllister said. Contact Joshua Brown at 5746286 or



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Bluegrass Roots Run Deep In Valley Mix Of Mountain, Country Genres Has Rich Local History By DOUG MANNERS and ALEXANDRA CONROY Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — The reverberating strings of old-time fiddling come from within the soul of the mountain musician. “Why do you have a fingernail on your hand? It’s a part of your substance and being. It’s hard to say I’m going to cut that piece off,” said Don DePoy, a fifth-generation Shenandoah Valley musician. “That speaks for a lot of Valley musicians. It comes to define who you are.” Defining bluegrass music is trickier. Scholars and musicians have never agreed on a universal definition. It’s generally considered an amalgamation of traditional music passed on orally from Appalachian culture, DePoy said. The

Photo by Holly Marcus / Special to the DN-R

Defining bluegrass music may be tricky, but it has become synonymous with the traditional music and culture of Appalachia. While the genre can trace its start to the18th century, in pop culture terms bluegrass remained shaded beneath the umbrella of country music until Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys created its distinct style in 1945, says Don DePoy, a fifth-generation Shenandoah Valley musician. I have planted...but God gave the increase. I Cor. 3:6

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music primarily consists of the five-string banjo, guitar, fiddle, mandolin, dobro and bass fiddle, with lyrics focused on basic human conditions. Bluegrass grew out of the mountain and folk music, and other genres of the times starting in the late 18th century throughout the Appalachian region where the first generations of immigrants settled, including in the Valley. But bluegrass was shaded beneath the umbrella of country music until Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys created its distinct style in 1945, according to DePoy, a bluegrass banjoist and “thumb-picking” guitar player who lives in McGaheysville. Monroe added the five-string banjo, and Earl Scruggs’ “three-finger picking” defined the genre’s unique, high-energy sound. “It was exciting; it made the audience stand up and cheer and holler for more,” said Tom Gray, a bass player with The See BLUEGRASS, Page 10


Harrisonburg, Va.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Happy Trail: Project Touts Valley’s Rich Musical History Music Trail A Chance To See — And Hear — Region’s Unique Heritage By JEREMY HUNT Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — It’s not too far a trip over the Blue Ridge Mountains from the central Shenandoah Valley to Charlottesville. And yet, if you’re a local banjo player like Scott Suter, hitting the right note at a jam session with musicians from the Albemarle County area could be quite a challenging feat. “There’s a sort of musical divide between the two. If you were a layperson you might not notice it,” the 48-year-old Spring Creek resident said. While not necessarily conducive to playing music, the divide did help one musician from Charlottesville figure out where Suter hails from after they played a song together. “One guy said, ‘You’re from out around Harrisonburg, aren’t you? You guys play hippie tunes out there,’” he recalled with a laugh. “I don’t know what it was that would identify us as hippies.”

The divide is at least in part due to the unique musical character, sound and heritage of the Shenandoah Valley, according to Don DePoy. “You can go anywhere in the world, and if you see a banjo player and he plays like me, chances are he’s from the Shenandoah Valley,” said DePoy, a fifth-generation Valley musician. DePoy and his wife, Martha Hills, are spearheading an effort to document, preserve and celebrate the Valley’s unique sounds and musical history. The McGaheysville couple started a nonprofit organization, the Shenandoah Valley Music Makers Association. Its signature project association is developing the Shenandoah Valley Music Trail. The group hopes to one day have a central location where artifacts and information can be presented. But, in the meantime, there’s already plenty to enjoy on the trail. As identified by the group, the music trail runs roughly from Winchester to Roanoke and includes 14 counties, 12 cities and more than 100 towns. See TRAIL, Page 11

Photo by Holly Marcus / Special to the DN-R

Don DePoy (left) and his wife, Martha Hills, of the Shenandoah Valley Mountain Music Makers Association in McGaheysville, are spearheading efforts to document, preserve and celebrate the Valley’s unique sounds and musical history.

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Worship Through Song

Funk’s Legacy: Sacred Music For The Masses With Harmonia Sacra, Mennonite Made ‘Worship Through Song’ Accessible To All By JEFF MELLOTT Daily News-Record

SINGERS GLEN — The modest two-story home at Singers Glen blends in naturally with the small community. A plaque on a monument and state historical highway sign are the only clues about the property’s special history featuring Joseph Funk, who lived from the late 1700s to the mid-1800s. Shenandoah Valley historian John Wayland called Funk “the father of song in Northern Virginia.” Funk promoted Christian worship through song by developing books that helped teach Mennonite congregations how to sing and understand music. The books included singing instruction As Funk grew older and musical notes to guide he ... eventually en- the users. Funk also conducted dorsed ... the use of schools for singing teachers musical instruments at his home. A part of his legacy is the in worship. change of the name of his  From a research paper home community from by Joseph Forster Mountain Valley to Singers Glen in 1860. The change came after Funk lobbied to have a post office created in the community. With the establishment of the post office, the community was renamed in honor of Funk for his work to promote and teach music with his singing schools. But his most notable achievement was “The Harmonia Sacra,” a shape-note tune book in the Mennonite tradition where Funk created notes that served as a tone, pitch and tune guide for those singing Christian hymns. Other hymnals at the time only had the song’s lyrics. “It was written with special shaped notes to help

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A plaque outside the historic Joseph Funk home in Singers Glen gives visitors a small glimpse of the man who once made this his home in the 18th and 19th centuries. Funk is remembered most today for his “Harmonia Sacra,” a shape-note tune book in the Mennonite tradition in which he created notes that served as a tone, pitch and tune guide for those singing Christian hymns. those who had not had formal music training to be able to sing music. Funk liked to call his shapednotes ‘character notes,’” wrote Singer’s Glen’s Dale MacAllister, a former Harrisonburg-Rockingham Historical Society board president. He has also researched Joseph Funk’s life. To help preserve and introduce the music to new generations, Sam Showalter, 68, of Harrisonburg helped establish The Harmonia Sacra Society Inc., which uses the traditional music at special concerts. The music, used only for special annual recitals

See FUNK, Page 26

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and performances, is sung differently in the Shenandoah Valley, Showalter said. “Funk’s version is so much more flowery and poetic than the modern hymn version,” he said. Showalter also is involved with Joseph Funk House LLC, a corporation created to purchase and preserve the homestead on Singers Glen Road. The society is seeking nonprofit status so it can

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The Best Medicine In The Best Tradition Of Weird Al And Homer & Jethro, Doctors Glick & Phillips Have Perfected The Art Of The Satirical Roasts By PETE DeLEA Daily News-Record

Michael Reilly / DN-R file photo

ABOVE: Steve Phillips (left) and John Glick, the two members of Glick & Phillips, entertain the crowd with their "Ballad of Sarah Palin," sung to the tune of ”The Ballad of Davy Crockett,” at Otterbein United Methodist Church on New Year’s Eve. LEFT: Phillips and Glick play the part of troubadours at Rockingham Memorial Hospital’s cafeteria, entertaining doctors and nurses on a recent Friday.

HARRISONBURG — Over the last decade, comedy singing duo Glick & Phillips have become a mainstay for downtown revelers ringing in the New Year. Partygoers would sell out whatever venue the pair performed at eager to hear who the comedians would target next. The musicians never hesitated to poke fun at local community leaders, towns, universities or Rockingham County stereotypes. “We’re equal opportunity offenders,” said Dr. John Glick, a 58-year-old acupuncturist who once operated a family practice in Elkton with his musical partner, Dr. Steve Phillips.

Bluegrass Roots Glick and Phillips first met in 1974 in medical school at the Medical College of Virginia, now part of Virginia Commonwealth

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University, in Richmond. The pair began to play bluegrass music in the basement of their dormitory with a few friends. Glick played the banjo and Phillips played the washboard. “We were pretty awful, but we had a lot of fun,” said Glick. Phillips recalled the band’s first gig at a Richmond diner, the Chase Lounge. He said there were nine band members and three patrons in the eatery, all of which were watching the movie “Helter Skelter” on a television on the opposite side of the diner.

“They kept asking us to keep it down,” he recalled. A short time later, the diner was razed, and so was the band.

Humor Kicks In In 1982, the doctors moved to the Shenandoah Valley, settling in Elkton. Inspired by Homer and Jethro, the wise-cracking duo that satirized popular songs from the 1940s through the 1960s, Glick and Phillips started to mix in a bit of satire here and there to their musical selections. They began playing for See SATIRE, Page 22



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Festivals Celebrating Bluegrass Music Have Sprung Up In Most States Bluegrass


Country Gentlemen, a bluegrass band that originated in the 1950s in the Washington, D.C., area.

Back From The Fringes Bluegrass didn’t reach widespread popularity until Lester Flatt and Scruggs left Monroe’s band and formed the Foggy Mountain Boys in 1948. They brought bluegrass to the urban market during the folk revival of the 1950s. By the early 1960s, though, bluegrass no longer was commercially viable. Mainstream country music programmers stopped playing bluegrass, and by the mid-1960s, it fell to the fringes of mainstream music. Bluegrass festivals, however, have since sprung up all over the U.S. and to-

day most states host at least one per year. These festivals give bluegrass musicians and enthusiasts an arena to share their music, even if popular culture won’t. Gray thinks back to the world’s first bluegrass festival 50 years ago at Oak Leaf Park in Luray. Even though the commercial market for Bluegrass music was waning, the festival did have an impact. “[The festival] was going to be a very big deal,” he said. “That [helped] boost the popularity of those who played it.” (A 50th anniversary festival — including some of the same musicians that were on the original bill — is slated for July 24 at Oak Leaf Park.) Ralph Stanley, one of the traditional bluegrass musicians, didn’t see widespread fame until his successful soundtrack for the film “O Brother, Where Art

Thou?” was released in 2000. The bluegrass community anxiously held its breath before the release, according to DePoy. He said stereotypes stemming from “Deliverance” — a 1972 film based on the James Dickey novel of the same name and famous for its portrayals of hillbillies and banjo music — set bluegrass music back about 20 years. “We all had a great sigh of relief,” DePoy recalled of the “O Brother … ” release, “and said, ‘It’s about time.’” Gray clarified, though, that most wellknown bluegrass musicians never acquired much wealth from their music. “They were making just enough to eat,” he said. Competition was intense for bluegrass musicians trying to make a living from playing, which fueled controversy even at the first festival in Luray.

Gray recalled Carter Stanley and Monroe up on stage at the Oak Leaf Park festival, telling the audience how Flatt and Scruggs were the “scum of the Earth.” The feud started after the duo refused to play at the festival if Monroe stayed on the program. Bluegrass musicians are more collegial these days. Groups still gather to play and hear the sounds of mountain music at weekly jam sessions in Harrisonburg, Grottoes and New Market. It’s that cohesiveness that keeps bluegrass tunes strumming today. “A lot of it is fueled by people wanting the authentic experience,” DePoy said. “Musicians rarely see one another play live together anymore.” Contact Doug Manners at 574-6293 and Alexandra Conroy at 574-6200

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Music Trail Runs From Winchester South To Roanoke And Includes 14 Counties FROM PAGE 7

According to the organization, the Valley’s musical roots can be traced to early pioneers and settlers migrating down the Great Wagon Road. Points of interest along the way include Singers Glen in Rockingham County, where Mennonite and music teacher Joseph Funk lived. In 1832, Funk introduced what would become perhaps the most important hymnal in the Mennonite church, “The Harmonia Sacra.” The hymnal, with Funk’s “shaped-note” style of music, helped parishioners understand and sing the tune of each hymn. Today, Singers Glen is known as the birthplace of sacred music in the South. For bluegrass aficionados, a stop in the Augusta County community of Crimora might be worth driving by. That’s where legendary picker Mac Wiseman was born in 1925. Wiseman, who started out working as a disc jockey for WSVA in Harrisonburg in 1944, was inducted into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 1993.

Photo by Holly Marcus / Special to the Daily News-Record

Banjos, mandolins, fiddles, guitars, a bass and a dulcimer blend together to play old familiar tunes at the Shenandoah Valley Bluegrass and Mountain Music Jam held on Tuesday evenings at James Madison University's Memorial Hall. Outnumbering “historic” sites on the trail are locations of jam sessions, concerts and music festivals, including what many say is the oldest bluegrass festival. The Oak Leaf Bluegrass & Mountain Music Festival at the Luray Caverns in

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“The fact is that there are lot of both professionals and people that love the music that come from the Valley,” says Jerry Shorb, a musician who lives in Grottoes and sits on the Music Makers Association board of directors. “Not everyone was meant to be or chose to be in the professional realm, but we have a lot of people that are as professional as what you would hear on the airways.” Suter, another association board member, sees those venues as snapshots of history, a kind of glimpse into the past. They are, in fact, much more literal examples of “living history” than is found in re-enactments of early American life and Civil War battles, he said. “I would argue with this music trail, you’re going to go and you’re going to see living history, because what you’re seeing is the actual perpetuation of history,” said Suter, who holds a doctorate in American Studies. “This is living history. It is the real thing. It is alive.” Contact Jeremy Hunt at 574-6273 or



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Something To Toot About Valley-Based Trombone Quartet Relishes Playing The Horns Mr. Jefferson’s Bones members (left to right) John Hollenbeck, Andy Lankford, Tom McKenzie, and Robert Mott perform at Tromblow’in III at James Madison University’s Forbes Center for the Performing Arts in January. The group’s name is an homage to Charlottesville, where the quartet got its start in 2001 and the nation’s third president founded a university. Traci White / DN-R

By DOUG MANNERS Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — The sudden blaring sound from their own horn could snap some trombone players from a sound sleep on stage. It’s tempting for trombonists to nod off in many big band and orchestra performances, where they sit out hundreds of measures before a crescendo builds and the time to move the slide finally arrives. Harrisonburg trombonist Tom McKenzie, 51, likened the experience in such settings to that of a place-kicker in football. “You stand on the sideline the whole game, you come in occasionally to kick an extra point and at the end of the game you come in to kick the game-winning field

goal,” he said. “I’ve played in a lot of big bands and I’m not crazy about it.” Smaller groups, like trombone quartets, allow players to perform an entire song, not just a smattering of measures.

‘Good For The Soul’ For the past decade, Mr. Jefferson’s Bones has provided the opportunity for elite trombonists to play brassy tunes — from start to finish — for thousands throughout the Shenandoah Valley and central Virginia. The Valley-based trombone quartet performs about a dozen times a year at church services, schools, summer concert series and jazz festivals. See TROMBONES, Page 30

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Alumni Fondly Recall Music-Filled Dayton Campus Small Conservatory Left Indelible Mark On Students By JEREMY HUNT Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — Dick Ward wasn’t drawn to the small liberal arts school in Dayton in the 1950s for its music program. Rather, he went to Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music to play basketball. But music was ubiquitous, filling the air even as he shot hoops in the gymnasium, which had a practice room adjacent to it. “As I practiced, I heard fantastic music playing all evening long,” said Ward, who now lives in Smith Mountain Lake. “It was an experience other people wouldn’t have, I’m sure.” Music permeated students’ lives at the college, the predecessor to Shenandoah University in Winchester, and it played a big role even for those like Ward who weren’t directly involved in the conservatory.

History The university was founded in 1875, first as

As I practiced [basketball], I heard fantastic music playing all evening long. It was an experience other people wouldn’t have, I’m sure.  Dick Ward Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music alumnus

Shenandoah Seminary. It later became Shenandoah Institute. In 1924, the state accredited it as a junior college and a year later it became Shenandoah College. The conservatory opened in 1937, although music was a big part of the school long before then, according to Jane Pittman, associate vice president for alumni affairs for Shenandoah University. Many of the school’s graduates went on to successful careers as performers and in music education through-

out the Valley and beyond “So many of our alumni, they went on to become music teachers and … choral directors,” she said. “We also had a lot of students who went on to be ministers.” In the face of declining enrollment, college officials decided to move the campus to Winchester in an effort to save the institution. The transition, which occurred in 1960, proved to be a success, with Shenandoah University now boasting an enrollment of more than 3,600.

Sound Of Music Back when it was in Dayton, alumni say, Shenandoah’s commitment to music was imparted to all students, even those who weren’t seeking it. “The junior college was built around the conservatory,” said Ward, a 1952 graduate of the college, which offered a two-year See CAMPUS, Page 19

Mon.-Sat. 8:30-5:00, Sun. 1:00-5:00 433-8890

Courtesy photo

The Troubadours, a Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music singing group, perform on the Dayton campus in 1959. The singers (from left to right) are Creed Frazier, Babe Pitzenbarger, Carl Harris and Bill Probst. The piano player is unidentified.



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

High School Bands Nourish ‘Love Of Music’ From Football Games To Spring Concerts, Young Musicians Provide School Soundtrack By JOSHUA BROWN Daily News-Record

Michael Reilly / DN-R

Band director J.R. Snow conducts the Harrisonburg High School Symphonic Band during a rehearsal of the jazzy number "Blue Shades" by Frank Ticheli in preparation for the band’s spring concert. For many students, high school bands perform the soundtrack for teenage life, from pep rallies to the big football game on Friday nights. “The football game would be empty without the band,” says Snow. Gloria Wright

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HARRISONBURG — They might not be out on the gridiron scoring touchdowns, but without local high school bands, your typical Friday night football game would be incomplete — not nearly as entertaining or, in some respects, as exciting. Think of a movie without a score: That fin slicing through the water in “Jaws,” for example, wouldn’t be nearly as menacing without the iconic, two-note cello refrain playing ever faster as the shark prepares to strike. High school bands provide that same accompaniment though never menacing — except perhaps to the opposing team. Their music stirs emotions, lightens a moment or celebrates a triumph. “The pep rally would be empty without the band. The football game would be empty without the band,” said J.R. Snow, Harrisonburg High School band director. “I think it’s a vital part — or I hope it’s a vital part — of our overall

comprehensive curriculum.” At HHS, students are divided into two bands: the competitive band, which requires members to practice more, and the Friday band, which allows members of the band to participate in other school functions, such as sports or drama. The competitive band plays at football games and competes at various events, while the Friday band just joins the competition band to play in the stands and during the pregame show at football games, Snow said. “I think people know who we are and what we do. Our mission is to serve both Harrisonburg and our school through music,” he said.

Making Friends Band offers a creative outlet for many students, while also providing an opportunity to develop potentially lifelong friendships, they say. “I just love music. I just love playing music,” said HHS senior Ryan Stees, 18. “Also … it’s fun to be around other people who have the same love of music you do.” Chase Dunn, a sophomore at Spotswood High School, echoed Stees’ thoughts. See H.S. BANDS, Page 15

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Bands Their ‘Own Cheering Section’ H.S. Bands


“You get to make a lot of friends,” said Dunn, 16. “A lot of it’s mentally stimulating as well as just fun.” Beyond making close friends, high school bands provide a lot of pep at football games. “We’re like our own cheering section,” said HHS senior Jennifer Hess, 17. “The band and the football team have a really good relationship. They want us there,” Stees added. Most Harrisonburg and Rockingham County high school bands have 50 or more members. And while “you can have a good band at any size,” Snow said, different challenges and benefits come with bands of different sizes. At Spotswood High School, which has about 55 students in its program, band director Gregory Oaks has to develop a show for its marching

band that provides the right balance of the musicians’ abilities. “For a marching band, one of the challenges is coming up with a show concept that will fit the kids in the band,” Oaks said. “You have to decide on what your strengths are and then pick a show concept that highlights your strengths and at the same time hides your weaknesses. That can be kind of challenging.” But having a successful band program doesn’t necessarily come from having a large number of students participate, said Snow, the HHS director. It’s the result of having students who are willing to dedicate time and effort to their music. “It doesn’t matter how many you have,” he said. “If they work hard, they’re going to be successful.” For the region’s newest school, East Rockingham High, Laura Cole is establishing the band program

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with a handful of students. The school, which opened in the summer of 2010 because of overcrowding at Spotswood High School, has mostly freshmen and sophomores, though a few upperclassmen also transferred over. Her program has about 25 students, only four of whom are juniors or seniors. And because only a few of her students will be graduating in the next two years, Cole expects her program to grow in the future. “I think a reasonable goal in the next couple of years would be about 50 kids,” she said. After leading a band of about 100 students at her last school, Cole says a smaller band makes for more of a “family or a team.” But while a small band brings a greater sense of camaraderie, it

Michael Reilly / DN-R

The Harrisonburg High School Symphony Band, under the direction by J.R. Snow, rehearses for this year’s spring concert. brings its share of challenges, too. “Every time they play, they’re like a soloist,” Cole said. “Like, in marching band, you could tell every time someone took a breath. There’s so much focus on every kid.”

But with fewer upperclassmen, the younger students have more chances to take center stage. “In a way, the kids I have are less experienced, but it gives them a lot of opportunities that they

wouldn’t have if there were [more] juniors and seniors,” Cole said. “So, I think that’s going to work out for us in the long term.” Contact Joshua Brown at 5746286 or


Thursday, May 26, 2011


Harrisonburg, Va.

Valley History, Stonewall Band Inextricably Linked From the Battlefield To Bandstand, Community Group Has Entertained Central Valley For Over A Century By JEFF MELLOTT

performed at events large and small, serenading everyone from paupers to presidents. STAUNTON — In an Aug. 22, 1861, The band, which started out as a letter to his wife Mary, Gen. Thomas traditional brass band and is now J. “Stonewall” Jackson broke briefly more of a symphonic community from thoughts of duty. band, has maintained its summer “I wish my darling could be with concerts at Gypsy Hill Park in me now and enjoy the Staunton for well over a sweet music of the brass Tracing back their century. band of the Fifth Regi“Tracing back their history and why ment. It is an excellent history and why they they were formed were formed is an inteband,” he wrote. At that moment, the is an integral part gral part of the ShenanFifth Volunteer Infantry of the Shenandoah doah Valley, the city of Regiment’s band memStaunton and the UnitValley. bers from Staunton ed States,” said former  John Avoli, Staunton Mayor John were less than two years from getting the nickformer Staunton mayor, Avoli. “You are going name of their famous on the Stonewall back to the Stonewall commander. Brigade Band Brigade.” With roots in the Band members lay Staunton Mountain Sax Horn Band claim to being the oldest continuous formed in 1855 in Staunton, the community band in the United States. Stonewall Brigade Band would be an “There were two things that killed active participant in the development of its home community. See STONEWALL, Page 28 Over the years, the members have Daily News-Record

Traci White / DN-R

The Stonewall Brigade Band performs in May inside a barn on the grounds of the New Market Battlefield on the 147th anniversary of the May 15, 1864, Civil War battle. The band claims to be the oldest continuous community band in the United States, with its roots predating the Civil War.

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Traci White / DN-R

John Hostetter, a guitarist for the band Elephant Child, performs at Clementine on the first night of MACRoCk 2011.

R ockin’ R ocktown True To Its Roots, 15-Year-Old Festival Gives Independent Artists Exposure While Helping Drive Downtown Business By DOUG MANNERS Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — An eclectic mix of bands brings thousands of independent music enthusiasts to downtown Harrisonburg every spring. Festivalgoers cram into local venues to hear groups from throughout the East Coast jamming out tunes ranging from folk to garage metal and everything in between. The Mid-Atlantic College Radio Conference — or MACRoCk as it’s better known — was born in 1996 out of a belief by James Madison University students that independent music could survive without corporate influence. Fifteen years later, those involved with MACRoCk say the conference has stayed true to its roots. Even a six-hour drive doesn’t deter The House Floor from returning to Harrisonburg every April for the two-day festival. The indie rock band moved from Blacksburg to Brooklyn, N.Y., after three members graduated from Virginia Tech.

But leaving Virginia didn’t mean bidding adieu to MACRoCk, where bands frequently party in students’ basements after midnight and crash on organizers’ couches. “You feel like a family with everyone there. We all have similar reasons for being there,” said Steve Bowen, guitarist for The House Floor. “The people are genuinely avid music fans.”

Taking The Show Downtown A desire to promote music — not sponsorship opportunities — led students at JMU’s radio station, WXJM, to form MACRoCk in 1996. The original idea was for the festival to rotate around campuses across the midAtlantic, but after a few years in Harrisonburg the event became entrenched as an annual JMU tradition. In the early years, most shows were held in students’ homes or on-campus facilities like Godwin Hall. In 2006, student organizers overshot See MACROCK, Page 42



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Statlers Stayed True To Their Roots Music Legends Always Returned To Central Valley ‘To Be Normal’ By JEFF MELLOTT Daily News-Record

STAUNTON — The Statler Brothers are regular folks in their hometown of Staunton. They were in their heyday. And they are now, nearly 10 years after their 2002 retirement. Folks here don’t crush them autographs. They might wave and say hello. Then they allow the group members to go on with their lives. Autograph-seekers could certainly be tempted, though. During their 38-year career, The Statler Brothers recorded 33 Top Ten country music hits, including four that topped the charts. They received nearly 70 major music awards, including three Grammys. Their list of honors includes inductions into the hall of fames for both country and gospel music, one of just seven artists — including Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley — to be named to both. With all their achievements, they kept their life balanced between celebrity and their personal life. The Statler Brothers remained

what they have always been, said Del. Richard “Dickie” Bell, R-Staunton. Celebrity changes many people, Bell said. “But these guys never wavered. They were true to everything they knew,” said Bell, a lifelong Staunton resident and friend of The Statler Brothers. “They are involved with their churches and their community. They are low-key folks who never draw attention to themselves,” Bell said. At his Staunton home, Statler Don Reid said the group members strived to keep their celebrity and their home life separate. To do that, group members kept Staunton as their home instead of moving to Nashville. “We’ve always been able to come home to Staunton and hide,” he said. “That was part of the charm of staying at home. This was where we grew up. This was our hometown. Everyone knew us. We came back here to be normal,” he said.

Cash The Statler Brothers that emerged to become country music legends took form in 1961 after a reorganization of the group, when Reid replaced original member Joe McDorman. The new lineup consisted of Reid, Phil Balsley, Lew DeWitt, and Don’s older brother, Harold Reid.

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That’s when the Statlers became the Statlers. As a high school group, the four original members called themselves The Four Star Quartet and later changed their name to The Kingsmen. But the name created confusion with a more famous gospel group from North Carolina of the same name. While trying to come up with a new name, the group spotted a box of Statler Tissues. The members figured there would be little chance of another band naming itself after a tissue — much less the same brand of tissues — and thus, The Statler Brothers was born. The group received its big break in 1963 when they were Cash’s opening act in Berryville. In their book, “The Statler Bros. Random Memories,” the Reid brothers noted that in early 1964, the group Photo by Sandra Gillard decided to quit their day jobs to focus on music full time. The decision soon The Statler Brothers at one of their final performances in 2002. paid off. Cash signed the group to tour with him full time. Their first gig as full time members of the tour came on March 8, 1964, in Canton, Ohio. The groups considers that date the beginning of their professional careers.

National Hit They soon began recording records including “Flowers on the Wall.” The song, written by DeWitt, See STATLERS, Page 20


Harrisonburg, Va.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Music Mixed With Romance, With Men Crooning To Women Outside Their Dorms Campus


degree at that time. “There was always recitals going on and concerts going on and us basketball players, we went to every one. So, there must have been some culture in us somewhere.” Ward’s wife, Clara, offers a different theory as to why the “college kids” attended all the events that were required for conservatory students — they were all dating each other. So, if the conservatory students had to go, generally speaking, the college kids would follow, said Clara Ward, a 1955 graduate of the conservatory. “In the spring and fall, you had the windows open all you heard was music,” said Clara, who

taught music in public before he returned to schools for decades. “Even Shenandoah. though the kids were in “I came back to Dayton the college, they were because I was madly in wrapped up in this as love with this cute little much as we girl beside were.” It was wonderful. me,” he said. Romance Not surWe’d be up high prisingly, also was on the porch and music found pervasive on they’d be down its way into the small campus, below and they’re courting, as which had serenade us in the well. about 200 Anne moonlight. students in Hughes Hill,  Anne Hill, a 1954 grad the 1950s, recalling how male and Dayton according to enrollment students would croon to resident, met figures from women from outside the and married Shenandoah ladies’ dorms L.P. Hill Jr., University. a son of the Dick Ward left the college’s president. school after graduating Some of Anne Hill’s with a two-year degree in fondest memories are of 1952. He moved on to a young men crooning to the four-year school in West ladies outside their dormiVirginia, but it wasn’t long tory.

“It was wonderful,” she said. “We’d be up high on the porch and they’d be down below and they’d serenade us in the moonlight.”

Best Years But students did need to tread lightly, though, given the college’s affiliation with the United Brethren Church, which later merged with the United Methodist Church. “We didn’t dare do anything obscene,” said Bonnie Evers Guyer, a 1956 graduate who still lives in Dayton. Still, students did manage to make their own fun, said Bob Crawford,

Courtesy photo

Students gather on the Howe Building’s steps on the Dayton campus of Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music in 1956. The school, with just 199 students in 1959, made the decision in 1960 to move to Winchester, where it has been ever since and See UNIVERSITY, Page 21 is now known as Shenandoah University.


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Jimmy Fortune Joined Group In 1982 Statlers


reached No. 2 on the country music charts and No. 4 on the popular music charts in 1966, according to Music The popularity of the song helped The Statler Brothers come to a decision to focus on country music. “We knew we were not Rock ‘n’ Roll people,” Don Reid said. “We knew country music was what we were shooting for because that is what we thought we were doing when we recorded “Flowers on the Wall,” he said. Their music identity always included gospel music. The performances reminded them of their faith and their days of growing up in Staunton and singing at area churches. During their career, The Statler Brothers recorded gospel albums, including one on Bible stories. Describing their final concert appearance in

“Random Memories,” Don Reid said, “The final thing before we exited the bus was a prayer. This had been standard procedure since we were kids back singing on weekends for two dollars a night.” But just as the career of the Statler Brothers was getting into high gear, the quartet changed members in 1982. Plagued by illness, DeWitt retired. Born in Roanoke, DeWitt died at his Waynesboro home in August 1990. Lew Dewitt Boulevard in that city is named for him. After DeWitt’s retirement, the group held auditions and hired Jimmy Fortune, who had grown up in Nelson County. During their rise to stardom, The Statler Brothers sought ways to help their hometown. In 1969, The Statler Brothers and city leaders created the free Fourth of July concert that ran for 25 years from 1970 to 1995 as

“Happy Birthday U.S.A.” at Gypsy Hill Park. The Statler Brothers and invited guests, such as Cash, performed. They drew large crowds — as many as 100,000 in 1976, the bicentennial year — to the city of 20,000. Local nonprofit organizations sold food and merchandise. The large crowds were also good for business. “It was really spectacular, recalled Stuart Cochrane, a Staunton insurance executive. Cochrane served on the concert committee for more than 10 years. Serving in the city police department at the time, current Staunton Mayor Lacy B. King said the crowds were well behaved. “It was a family oriented thing,” King said. “Of course, The Statlers drew that sort of crowd.” In “Random Memories,” Harold Reid described the typical fans of The Statler Brothers as “the people who cook in the backyard on Saturday, go to church on Sunday and are on time for work on Monday.” In its first three yeas, the performance stage was at the football field. Then, the stage was moved to the baseball diamond’s center field. The fans also stood along Thornrose Avenue, which runs beside the ballpark. They also listened and watched from the backyards of the hillside neighborhood that overlooks the park, King said. “It was a fun time,” he said. As the Fourth of July concert’s run wound down to its end in 1994, The Statler Brothers were already writing and starring in an hourlong variety show on The Nashville Network. See STATLERS II, Page 21


Harrisonburg, Va.

City, Group Members Share Respect Statlers II


The show featured a combination of country and gospel music and comedy. The show was consistently rated as the network’s top program during its sevenyear run starting in 1991. In “Random Memories,” Don Reid said the show, while top-rated, did not reach the right age groups and was cancelled. Even so, the show and the career of The Statler Brothers had not gone unnoticed by their peers. In 2007, The Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame inducted the group members. “A lot the country acts, especially, are influenced through their heritage from church and gospel,” said Hall of Fame Selection Committee Chairman Tom Long. The next year, The Statler Brothers was inducted into the Country Music Association Hall of Fame. “The quartet is such a timeless powerful sound,” said Michael McCall, hall of fame writer and editor. “They were always a little underrated as to how popular they were because they did not cause trouble. They were not controversial,” he said. The inspiration for the success for The Statler Brothers came from their hometown, Don Reid said. Many of their songs, he said, were about memories. “Even as adults, we were walking down sidewalks that we grew up on. Those memory songs came easy for us to perform and feel because they were still an every day occurrence,” he said. The Statler Brothers also received the heart-felt thanks of Staunton.


Courtesy Photo

Tens of thousands of people turned out to hear the Statler Brothers’ “Happy Birthday U.S.A.” shows at Gypsy Hill Park in Staunton. The city’s welcome sign recognizes the community as their home. The city named Statler Boulevard for the group members. And, on July 5, 2004, the city dedicated a monument of four stools on a stage to The Statler Brothers. The community’s biggest tribute continues to be the way it treats the celebrities every day. The city and group members share a mutual respect and loyalty, Cochran said. “These people have graciously given a lot. They have not asked much in return. You can see by the private lives that they have lived, that privacy means something to them,” he said. The Statler Brothers are treated like everyone else, said former Staunton Mayor John Avoli. “They are a reflection of this community. Their morals, their values, their religious beliefs and their deep faith are representative of the Shenandoah Valley.” Contact Jeff Mellott at 574-6290 or


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president of Shenandoah’s Dayton Alumni Society and a choir director for more than 30 years. “Not that I want to tell you,” he said when asked for examples of the fun. While the school’s size ultimately forced it to move north, students say being small made it unique. “It was really like a family, which is why I

think we’re so successful with our reunion,” said Crawford, a 1956 conservatory graduate who lives in Boonesboro, Md. Annual reunions for Dayton alumni draw upward of 75 people who graduated from the university 50 years ago or more. Dayton alumni often tell Pittman why the experience still means so much to them after such a long time. “Whether the stu-

dents were in the college or the conservatory, they always say times were tough, but the years they spent in Shenandoah were they best of their lives,” she said. Contact Jeremy Hunt at 5746273 or

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Harrisonburg, Va.

Among Glick And Phillips’ Targets: Mennonites, JMU — And Of Course, Politicians Satire


picnics and other small gatherings. “We noticed that people really enjoyed our funny songs, more than our nonfunny songs,” said Glick. The duo got its break in the mid-1980s when they played their first concert as Glick & Phillips at The Little Grill on North Main Street in Harrisonburg. There, the poking fun at area politicians and newsmakers began. “We try to take current events and people and try to make fun of them,” said Phillips, 58, who serves as the medical director for primary care services for Rockingham Memorial Hospital’s medical group. “If you get your name in the newspaper or on the radio, you have a chance of getting a song written about you.” The comic routine has taken them to numerous countries, including Cambodia and Israel, performing for various conventions. The most memorable performance for the pair was a show for prisoners at San Quentin State Prison in California. The duo, wearing pink tuxedos, was on the other end of the jokes for a moment.

Then, Glick recalled, they noticed that there were three groups standing apart from one another in the audience: whites, blacks and Hispanics. “We started teasing them back,” said Glick. “We started inviting people to come up and sing with us. People were laughing and pushing each other up on the stage. By the end, we were all singing Amazing Grace.” He said a prison guard told him it was the first time he saw all three groups come together.

Local Shots While some of their performances have taken them outside of the Valley, most have been in Harrisonburg, including all of their First Night Harrisonburg events. First Night, an alcoholfree family friendly New Year’s Eve celebration, was held for years in downtown Harrisonburg up until last year, when it was canceled due to a lack of funding and volunteers. Glick & Phillips didn’t let that keep them from playing their traditional New Year’s Eve concert in downtown. They performed last Dec. 31 at Otterbein United Methodist Church in Harrisonburg,

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with the proceeds going to the Cops Tonight, “about a a local network of homeless back-to-school block party shelters. in 2000 that turned into a One of the duo’s biggest riot. hits is a song named The song, to the tune of “Datin’ in Dayton,” which Bill Haley’s “Rock Around pokes fun at Old Order the Clock,” took shots at Mennonites. the Dukes. One “The cops line in Whenever we would showed up the song in riot gear, see politicians, they jokes I hope they would say, ‘I hope about the don’t make you don’t write a denomime spill my nation’s song about me.’ But beer,” they mode of sang. I know deep down transThey also they really wanted portation. referenced us to. “They the students ride  Steve Phillips setting trash around in bins on fire. buggies,” “Well they sing. “They don’t be- there’s a fire in the Dumplieve in cars, but when they ster and I heard someone gotta go somewheres, they shout ‘let’s all urinate and like to ride around in ours.” put it out,’” the song went. While many towns, including Bridgewater and Political Prose And true to the satirist’s Elkton, have been targets, James Madison University tradition, the duo never has also been caught in the passes up an opportunity to incorporate a politician bull’s-eye. The doctors sang a paro- into their material. Former Harrisonburg dy, “Throwing Rocks at All

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Mayor Rodney Eagle became one of the targets in a song called Eighteen Holes — a tune that jokes about the city’s development of Heritage Oaks golf course. “You give them your taxes and you know what that means: an eagle, a birdie and a whole lot of green,” they sang. “Whenever we would see politicians, they would

say, ‘I hope you don’t write a song about me,’” said Phillips. “But I know deep down they really wanted us to.” Eagle said he enjoyed the jabs. “It’s good humor,” he said. “I’ve never been offended by it. To me, it’s just fond memories.” Contact Pete DeLea at 5746278 or

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Rock Lotto Lets Area Musicians Mix It Up Random Draw Leads To Unlikely Sounds, Cash For Music Programs By PETE DeLEA Daily News-Record

Courtesy Photo

A band that formed as part of Rock Lotto — an event that forms groups by pairing musicians by lottery — plays its set at the lotto’s performance night at The Blue Nile in Harrisonburg. The bands have two months to write songs, rehearse and come together as a cohesive unit before they perform their 10- to 25-minute sets. Rock Lotto is no doubt a blast for all involved, but it also serves as a fundraiser for school music programs.

HARRISONBURG — On a Wednesday night last January, surrounded by roughly 70 other musicians in The Blue Nile’s basement, Lelia Graham stuck her hand in a paper back and grabbed a poker chip. On that chip was a number — a digit that represented one of roughly 15 teams consisting of four or five musicians. By the end of the night, the randomly selected musicians — ranging from guitarists and drummers to singers and piano players — formed a band that would have two months to create some original tunes as part of the 2011 Harrisonburg

Rock Lotto. The 31-year-old Harrisonburg resident, who sings and plays keyboard, said she wasn’t wary of who’d she be matched up with because of the talent Harrisonburg has to offer. “Hopefully, it leads to something good,” said Graham, who has participated in the event for the last two years.

Breaking The Monotony The Rock Lotto was first held here in 1997, but never really picked up momentum. But about three years ago, Jesse Stover started began brainstorming with See LOTTO, Page 30

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Your Summer Destination Ongoing Art Exhibition: Come see the breathtaking work of local artists at our estate daily.

We specialize in decorative concrete. Several different patterns available. Borders and specialty stamps available for driveways, pool decks, patios & walkways. We provide expert service from a professional staff.

Friday at CrossKeys: Join us for outdoor music, food & wine twice monthly. Admission is $10 with reservation by Wed. before or $12 at door. Please call for musician details and times. Tis the season to sit outside on the Courtyard, enjoy the Shenandoah Valley Mountain views, drink fantastic CKV wines with friends and munch on some of your favorite snacks. Call ahead for reserved seating options. May 27th-30th: CKV Anniversary Weekend Celebration: Come join us on our third anniversary! We will have live music throughout the weekend. Please call for details and times. Friday, May 27th we will have music in the evening and Saturday, May 28th we will have a delicious wine dinner to celebrate our 3rd Year Anniversary! Call for details and pricing!

Our Reputation Speaks For Itself. 540-433-2177 540-820-7840

DISCOVER ... TASTE ... EXPERIENCE ... THE GOOD LIFE AT CROSSKEYS Open daily 11 a.m.-7 p.m. for tours & tastings. Tour our state of the art facility at 12 p.m., 2 p.m. or 4 p.m. & learn about the art of winemaking. NEW & EXCITING: We are now offering A DAILY VINEYARD LUNCH PACKAGE AT 1 P.M. You must make reservations 2 days in advance. Call for details and pricing. Booking for weddings, private parties and corporate events.


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August 13 & 14, 2011 at TBA VA Dreams w/Cooter and The Dukes of Hazzard Cast and T. Graham Brown at Hazzard County Reunion Sperryville, Va. August 15-20, 2011 at TBA VA Dreams w/ Linda Davis at Rockingham County Fair August 26, 2011 at TBA VA Dreams w/ Glen Shelton at Richmond County Fair September 9, 2011 at TBA VA Dreams w/ Cooter at Prestonburg, Ky. September 17, 2011 at 3:00 p.m. Cooter Claws and Paws at Halifax High School September 24, 2011 at TBA VA Dreams w/ Jimmy Fortune at Fortune/Williams Festival

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

‘The Harmonia Sacra’ Has Gone Through 26 Editions Funk


raise funds for the home. Funk’s home at 9627 Singers Glen Road is on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register.

Vision In a 2009 research paper on Funk by George Fox University professor Joseph Forster, said Funk believed singing to God. “He had a vision for a musically literate people of God, and he worked hard to achieve his vision,” Forster wrote. To promote his view, Funk wrote “Genuine Church Music” in 1832. The book became “The Harmonia Sacra” in its fifth edition in 1851. By the 1970s, the book had sold more than 100,000 copies. As of 2008, it had gone through 26 editions.

In her book, “Joseph Funk: A Biography,” Frances Funk, a descendant, said the music pioneer was an astute and intelligent man. “Joseph was born with a rare gift,” she wrote. Music, she said, was a source of energy for Funk, who “employed it as naturally as the air he breathed.” But church members did not always appreciate what Funk advocated, particularly when it came to the use of musical instruments to praise God. “As Funk grew older he seemed to grow more and more fond of the sound of instruments and eventually even endorsed and recommended the use of musical instruments in worship,” Forster wrote. The source of his musical inspiration is a matter of speculation. Some historians have credited Barbara Showal-

ter, who was Funk’s mother, for encouraging his musical talent, MacAllister said. One of Funk’s cousins was A.J. Showalter, who wrote the words to the hymn “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms,” MacAllister said.

Family Funk came from a strong Mennonite family tradition. His grandfather, Heinrich Funk, was possibly the first Mennonite Bishop in America, arriving in Pennsylvania before 1720. Funk’s father, Henry, was a Mennonite minister and schoolteacher. Funk was born on April 6, 1778, the 11th of 13 children. The birth date, different from the one on the monument at the Funk homestead site, is from the Funk family

Bible. The family moved to Rockingham County in 1786 and settled near Mountain Valley. In 1804, Funk married Elizabeth Rhodes, who bore five children but died in early 1814. Funk remarried by the end of the same year to Rachael Britton, who had nine children. After a 20year marriage, she died. Funk did not remarry. He died at age 84 in December 1862. Funk took on numerous occupations during his lifetime, from homesteader and farmer to writer, shape-note inventor, printer and music teacher and publisher. “This renaissance man continued most of these roles into his 70s and 80s,” Forster wrote. See FUNK II, Page 43

A page from the fourth edition of Joseph Funk’ “Harmonia Sacra.” Nikki Fox / DN-R

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


When It Comes To Music, Call It The Country Fair Nashville Stars Grandstand’s Biggest Draws At County’s Weeklong Festival By PETE DeLEA Daily News-Record

HARRISONBURG — Looking back at the last decade, Lisa Geiman can rattle off an extensive list of country music superstars who have taken the stage at the Rockingham County Fair. From Toby Keith and Randy Travis to Dierks Bentley and Jason Aldean, the Valley resident and her 27-yearold daughter, Brecken Geiman, have seen them all within a few miles of their homes. See FAIR, Page 46


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Country star Jason Aldean sold out the Rockingham County Fair in 2009. Country music acts have been the fair’s most popular entertainment over the years.

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Explore the Music Heritage of the Brethren & Mennonites Visit the CrossRoads Heritage Center, Wed.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Learn about:

• Joseph Funk and his singing schools in Singers Glen • The Mennonite Hour Singers • Hymnal: A Worship Book • CDs of sacred music (on sale) Valley Brethren-Mennonite Heritage Center 1921 Heritage Center Way, Harrisonburg, VA 22803 (540) 438-1275



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Band’s History Goes Back To 1855 And The Formation Of The Sax Horn Band Stonewall

mountain sax horn band signed the papers of incorporation.


community bands: depressions and wars,” said Stonewall Brigade Director Robert Moody, 70, of Staunton. The band has been able to endure because of the type of community that created it. “People were born here, lived here, and died here,” Moody said.


Stonewall The band’s history began in 1855 when 14 men formed the Sax Horn band. The group reorganized and changed the name in 1859 under the direction of Augusts J. Turner to Turner’s Silver Cornet Band. It was just two years before war broke out, but “it was not a Civil War band,” said the band’s president, Hannah Bush, 65, of Staunton. “It just happened to get sucked into it.” Some of the sax horn band members joined the Confederate army at the outbreak of the war in April 1861. Others waited a year later to enlist after the newly formed government instituted a military draft. The band members in the Fifth Virginia played together informally. When the Southern army reorganized in the spring of 1862, a regimental band was formally authorized. “The band had a martial purpose in addition to,” the other roles they played, said

Traci White / DN-R

Bob Moody, director of the Stonewall Brigade Band, conducts the musicians during a concert at the New Market Battlefield State Historical Park. Scott Harris, director of the New Market Battlefield State Historical Park. They served in various capacities, including riflemen, messengers and stretcher bearers, Harris, 50, said. After Jackson’s death on May 10, 1863, the Confederate government issued Special Orders No. 129. The document named Jackson’s First Brigade and its members, including the band members, as the Stonewall Brigade. In April 1865, the band members sur-

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rendered with Gen. Robert E. Lee at Appomattox Court House and the Civil War officially ended. They returned to Staunton with their instruments and the name, Stonewall Brigade Band. They continued to use the name as they performed at various activities. On Feb. 4, 1875, after performing for more than 10 years as the Stonewall Brigade Band, the members legally incorporated the name. At least seven of the 14 members of the


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The band also made regional trips, including to Harrisonburg, where it helped dedicate the Rockingham County Courthouse in 1898. It traveled to dedicate monuments to Lee and Jackson, and it was in Richmond for the reinternment of Confederate President Jefferson Davis’ remains at Hollywood Cemetery. The band’s concerts at Gypsy Hill Park in Staunton are its most traditional gigs. In 1891, 25 years after the city purchased 30 acres to develop the park, it started a now 120-year tradition when it paid the band $250 to play each week form May to October. The 2011 schedule calls for the band to play the park beginning June 6 at 8 p.m. With the exception of July 4, the band plays at 8 p.m. each Monday through Aug. 29. Ulysses S. Grant became the first U.S. president to be serenaded by the band when his train came through Staunton in June 1874. Grant, commander of all Union forces during the Civil War, heard the band played “My Country Tis of Thee.” “For many years thereafter, the band

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Junior Stonewall Brigade Band Helped Pave Way For Today’s School Bands Brigade


was to treasure its own memories of this incident,” said Marshall M. Brice in his book “The Stonewall Brigade Band.” Years later, the band played at Grant’s funeral. It also marched in the procession at the dedication of Grant’s Tomb. The band’s first brush with a president would not be its last. The band marched in presidential inaugurals, including two for Stauntonborn Woodrow Wilson in 1913 and 1917. It also serenaded president-elect Wilson when he visited his birthplace in Staunton on Dec. 28, 1912. The band’s endurance was challenged in the first half of the 20th Century. Its membership shrunk during World War I. During the Great Depression, members of the band received money through the federal government’s Work Progress Administration’s

program for musicians through the Staunton Federal Band. World War II also posed a threat to the band’s existence as members were called away to military and civilian duties. “Undoubtedly, the pride of history, together with support from the city, helped tie the band over the crises imposed by the war years,” Brice said in his book. The federal government approved a draft in 1940. To help the band, the Junior Stonewall Brigade Band was formed on April 12, 1941, with children, including those of elementary school age, taking up the musical tradition. In the early 1950s, the Stonewall Brigade Band began admitting women. Instead of the traditional gaudy band uniform, the group’s attire of white shirts and black pants was introduced. Challenged by the development of school band programs, the junior Stonewall

Brigade Band ended. Yet the school programs have provided a training ground for band members. And the brigade band offers school band players a chance to play additional performances. Bush and Moody, and Harris, for example augmented their school play with the brigade band. The band, now with more than 70 members, is as strong as it has ever been. But the music is not quite the same as when the band traveled to dedicate monuments of Southern war heroes. The band now plays pieces suited designed for groups with a wider range of instruments. In additional the original brass, the band features woodwinds, such as the oboe and clarinet, as well as a variety of percussion instruments. “We play many marches because that is what the audience enjoys. It is lively,” Bush said.

But the band plays much more. Summer concerts follow a fairly consistent format, “including a military march, an overture, a concert march, a sacred selection, a Broadway show medley, and several novelty, patriotic, and popular selections,” according to the band’s website. Concerts traditionally end with a Sousa march and the National Anthem. Several concerts have themes, including those for Flag Day and Christmas in July, as well as the band’s children’s concert. Members handle 140 pieces of music each season, said Moody, who has been the band’s director for 35 years. “We do Civil War music. But we do modern arrangements. The period music from the Civil War was for entirely different instruments,” he said. “Dixie,” long a band mainstay, is now part of a

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“President Grant” medley with “My Country Tis of Thee.” The band practices during the fall and winter every Monday night at its headquarters at the entrance to Gypsy Hill Park. The brick building, not far from the bandstand, houses old photos, antique

band instruments and mementoes of its Confederate history. The band has become a mainstay of the community. “It’s expected to be there,” Bush , the band president, said. “It is something that people count on.” Contact Jeff Mellott at 5746290 or

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Over $5,000 Raised For Music Programs Mr. Jefferson’s Bones is (left to right) John Hollenbeck, Andy Lankford, Tom McKenzie and Robert Mott. Traci White / DN-R

Name A Nod To Band’s Birthplace Trombones


“These types of things give us an opportunity to play the melody, to play some great harmonies and to play a whole song,” said Robert Mott, 49, the group’s founder. “It’s somewhat selfish, but it’s also good for the soul.” The quartet’s name is a nod to its birthplace. Mr. Jefferson’s Bones formed in 2001 as an off-season weekly trombone sectional rehearsal of the Charlottesville and University Sectional Orchestra. Its focus changed in 2006 after Mr. Jefferson’s Bones headlined an evening of Staunton’s Jazz in the Park summer concert series. That helped transform the quartet into a more serious performing group, said Mott, the quartet’s last original member. It also shook up the group. After two original members dropped out due to time constraints, McKenzie and John Hollenbeck, 59, joined in 2007. Andy Lankford, 44, jumped on board two years ago.

other three all reside in Harrisonburg. All excluding Lankford — a trombone professor at James Madison University — work day jobs outside of music. A lack of paying gigs in the Valley makes playing as a full-time professional unrealistic, according to Mott, a graphic designer. But music is still serious business for the quartet, which sponsors an annual day of workshops, clinics and concerts called Tromblowin’ each January at JMU. They make time to rehearse about twice a month and most members play their horn daily. “Once you get past a certain point,” Hollenbeck said, “you’ve invested so much time into learning to do something well, you just don’t drop it.” And you yearn for more than just to play in the band, the trombonists said. You want to play a prominent role in the show. “You want to play for people,” Mott said. “You want to share that joy, that talent you have which brings you joy that you hope will bring others joy.”

struments they normally would not choose to play,” said Stover, who this fellow musicians Mark Finks and Jere- year played guitar in a band named miah Jenkins. The trio was looking for Jane Austen’s Pizza Party. The bands meet to practice about something unique to bring to the once a week to come up with a 10- to 25Friendly City’s music scene. “We just kind of threw some ideas minute set, which can include one covaround,” said Stover, a 33-year-old au- er song. The rest have to be original dio engineer for Southard Audio in tunes. Stover said it can be a tough task, esMount Crawford. “There are a lot of people that play instruments that pecially if a band lacks musical diversiaren’t in bands. It seemed like it would ty. “It’s a little stressful,” be fun.” The main thing said Stover. “People worIn 2009, 59 musiry about whether they cians met at The Blue isn’t making can pull it off, but everyNile for the rebirth of amazing music. It’s one does.” Rock Lotto. The artists to raise money for In March, the bands formed 12 bands, return to The Blue Nile music programs. which created their for a night of performown unique names, There are programs ances. ranging from The being cut. It’s a As a fundraiser, Open Door Policy to tragedy. there’s a modest cover Sandwich Shark. charge to watch the At least two bands  Lelia Graham, show. stuck together followmusician and Rock Lotto In its first three ing the event, includparticipant years, the event has ing one that went on to grown to include more release an album. Stover said the event accomplished than 70 musicians and has raised more that $5,000 for area school music proits mission. “It brings the musicians together,” grams. While she said the event is fun, Grasaid Stover. And it raises money for a good cause: ham said it also serves a meaningful school music programs, many of which purpose. She said music programs at school have been scaled back and in some places done away with altogether be- played an important role in her life. “The main thing isn’t making amazcause of budget cuts. ing music, it’s to raise money for music programs,” Graham said. “There are Creativity Kicks In After the bands are formed, the indi- programs being cut. It’s a tragedy.” vidual members have about two months to gel. Contact Pete DeLea at 574-6278 or “A lot of people end up playing




Music: A Serious Business The quartet is now completely Valley based. Mott lives in Staunton, while the

Contact Doug Manners at 574-6293 or

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Edith J. Carrier Arboretum:

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Best of the Valley 2011

Children play in the Mad Science Lab at the Explore More Discovery Museum, which won best museum, best renovation and best kid-friendly venue. File photo by Traci White



Downtown Restaurants, Shops, Attractions Dominate Best Of The Valley By RACHEL BOWMAN Daily News-Record

Another year of voting for Best of the Valley has closed and a new class of winners are waiting to be unveiled. The people — nearly 1,100 of them — have spoken on 73 categories covering everything from eateries and parks to retail shops and the people, places and things that make Harrisonburg a wonderful place to live. As usual, the final results included some perennial favorites, a few surprises and some new categories. But members of the Daily News-Record’s features staff found a surprising trend as they tallied the final results: as far as voters were concerned, the city’s downtown district seems to have become THE place to be. Downtown restaurants — Beyond, Clementine Café,

Shank’s Bakery, Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger Joint, Union Station Restaurant & Bar, Local Chop and Grill House and others — dominated the best eats portion of the ballot. The shopping and services category was replete with downtown winners, from established businesses James McHone Jewelers and Downtown Wine & Gourmet to newcomers Ten Thousand Villages and The Yellow Button. Downtown also cleaned up in the entertainment category, with Clementine Café and Explore More Discovery Museum garnering recognition. Downtown revitalization and the Harrisonburg Farmers Market were named among the area’s cultural gems; those, plus the Virginia Quilt Museum and the local restaurant/retail scene, were among voters’ picks of their favorite thing about the ’Burg. So, it comes as no surprise that Eddie

Bumbaugh, executive director of Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance, finds the results satisfying. “Frankly, I’m flattered,” Bumbaugh said. “It was slow progress over the first few years … the last few years we’re getting compliments from residents and visitors alike.” He credited this growing acceptance of downtown revitalization to a collaborative working relationship among the city’s government, the public and businesses who have worked to present a vibrant shopping, historic and cultural district for city and county residents. He also said the “Buy Local” movement has helped, attracting almost exclusively locally owned businesses that appeal to residents and visitors searching See RESULTS, Page 38


Harrisonburg, Va.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Best Valley And The Winners Are ... of the


BEST EATS Appetizers

BEYOND _________________________________ Atmosphere

CLEMENTINE CAFÉ _________________________________ Asian TASTE OF THAI _________________________________ Bakery SHANK’S BAKERY _________________________________ Barbecue SMOKIN’ PIG _________________________________ Breakfast

LITTLE GRILL COLLECTIVE _________________________________ Burger JACK BROWN’S BEER & BURGER JOINT _________________________________ Tacos EL CHARRO _________________________________ Cheap Eats JESS’ LUNCH _________________________________ Coffee

GREENBERRY’S COFFEE & TEA COMPANY _________________________________ Downtown Restaurant

Place to run

Place to blow your diet


JACK BROWN’S BEER & BURGER JOINT _________________________________

THE STUDIO _________________________________

Place to sit and read


_________________________________ Place to take visitors

BARNES & NOBLE CAFÉ _________________________________ Place to take a date

GOLD’S GYM _________________________________ Vet

SKYLINE DRIVE _________________________________ Place to walk your dog


ASHBY ANIMAL CLINIC _________________________________

_________________________________ Place to fish

_________________________________ Place to take your family



_________________________________ Place to be seen


_________________________________ Restaurant with wireless

PANERA BREAD _________________________________ Sandwiches PENNYBACKERS RESTAURANT _________________________________ Steak

Live music venue

CLEMENTINE CAFÉ _________________________________ Local band-original THE STEEL WHEELS _________________________________ Local band-cover



_________________________________ Karaoke


HAM’S RESTAURANT _________________________________ Local artist

_________________________________ Thai _________________________________ Vegetarian

LITTLE GRILL COLLECTIVE _________________________________ SHOPPING/SERVICES Grocery store



SILVER LAKE _________________________________ Place to bike HILLANDALE PARK _________________________________ CULTURE Best radio personality


_________________________________ Best radio station

WMRA 90.7 _________________________________ Best renovation EXPLORE MORE DISCOVERY MUSEUM


_________________________________ Best use of taxpayer money


_________________________________ Worst use of taxpayer money

_________________________________ Dance spot _________________________________ Entertainment value


CLEMENTINE CAFÉ _________________________________ Cheap night out

HERITAGE OAKS GOLF COURSE _________________________________ Best place to propose

DAVE’S DOWNTOWN TAVERNA _________________________________ Place to celebrate

_________________________________ Best place to spend a Saturday

CLEMENTINE CAFÉ _________________________________ French Fries

MARTIN’S _________________________________

DAVE’S DOWNTOWN TAVERNA _________________________________ Happy Hour

THE YELLOW BUTTON _________________________________ Store that sells handcrafted art

THE LOCAL CHOP AND GRILL HOUSE _________________________________ Ice Cream

TEN THOUSAND VILLAGES _________________________________

_________________________________ Museum/historical site


EXPLORE MORE DISCOVERY MUSEUM _________________________________

EXPLORE MORE DISCOVERY MUSEUM _________________________________




Downtown shop


_________________________________ Late Night Eats

_________________________________ Thrift store

JACK BROWN’S BEER & BURGER JOINT _________________________________

GIFT AND THRIFT _________________________________ Dry cleaners



_________________________________ New Restaurant


_________________________________ Wine shop


Favorite thing about H’burg:

HARRISONBURG INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL _________________________________

DOWNTOWN, THE MOUNTAINS, SMALL_________________________________

Hiking trail

SKYLINE DRIVE _________________________________

DOWNTOWN WINE & GOURMET _________________________________ Jeweler

DAVE’S DOWNTOWN TAVERNA _________________________________ Pasta

_________________________________ Day spa

HERITAGE OAKS GOLF COURSE _________________________________ Park

L’ITALIA RESTAURANT & BAR _________________________________ Pizza

THE BEAUTY SPA _________________________________ Florist

_________________________________ Place to relax

CIRO’S LASAGNA HOUSE _________________________________





_________________________________ Best kid-friendly venue

Festival or other community event

_________________________________ Outdoor Dining










VA. QUILT MUSEUM, IT’S WELCOMING _________________________________ One thing I’d change:


_________________________________ STORES, BADLY TIMED TRAFFIC LIGHTS, _________________________________ MORE BIKE ROUTES, OLIVE GARDEN _________________________________




Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Best of the Valley 2011

Local Chop And Grill House Takes Home Best Happy Hour, Best Steak, Best Place To Take A Date By HEATHER BOWSER Daily News-Record

A veteran of the Harrisonburg restaurant scene, Craig Moore is back with his newest eatery, the Local Chop & Grill House on West Gay Street in downtown Harrisonburg. The winner of three awards in the Best of the Valley contest — best happy hour, best place to take a date and best steak — Moore took a

few minutes to talk a little bit about his business and the response it’s received from residents.

What makes your restaurant stand out? We have a unique philosophy to really emphasize local products. We try to really make that part of our approach to the foods we serve. The other reason is that we have a great staff. Everyone works hard together to

make sure that product goes out as perfectly as it can. My wife, Bert [Moore], she works the front of the house and she really knows how to work the room. You can’t win awards without having great people in the kitchen, bar and dining room. I’m really proud of my staff.

What about your happy hour appeals to people?

We have a great deal where people can get a beer or glass of wine with one food item for $6. We have 16 handcrafted beers on tap all the time.

What is it about the restaurant that makes it the best place for a date? When the meal’s all over and done, the woman or the man is going to be thoroughly impressed. They’ll think, “Wow. If he thinks this much about me, he must like me.” We get lots of proposals here because we impress people and not just couples. We had a father bring his daughter in for a birthday recently. He had us put her gift inside a tulip and lay it across the serving plate. Being a father, it touched me.

What makes your steak

File photo by Pete Marovich

The Local Chop and Grill House won best steak, best happy hour and best place to take a date. types of preparations and so amazing? A lot of restaurants 15 homemade dipping buy their steaks from sauces. I can’t find any feedlot beef. Our packers other restaurant with handpick the cows from this kind of concept. Peothe Midwest. It’s a little ple can create their own more expensive but it’s entrée. worth it for better quality meat. We also have four What’s your most

popular steak dip? Now Bub Ser ving ble T eas!

Thank you to everyone who voted us “Best Coffee” in the Valley! 400 S. High Street • Harrisonburg 434-0111 Daily Hours: Mon-Fri 6 AM-9 PM, Sat-Sun 7:30 AM-9 PM

Our top dips are the local whiskey sauce, horseradish crème fraiche and our house steak sauce.

Are there any future plans for the restaurant? Yes. We constantly try to get more and more local products. With the new food co-op starting, we’ll likely partner with them to bring on some more local items.

Would you like to say anything to the voters? Thank you for your support. We’re honored that they appreciate what we do. One award would have been great, three is wonderful. Contact Heather Bowser at

Harrisonburg, Va.


Thursday, May 26, 2011


Best of the Valley 2011

H’burg International Festival Wins New Best Festival Category By LAURA RENNIE Daily News-Record

On the last Saturday of September, visitors to Harrisonburg’s annual International Festival have the opportunity to experience languages, music, fashions, arts, crafts and foods from around the world. This September marks the International Festival’s 14th year. In previous years, the festivities have included dancing and language lessons, face painting and quilt making. Co-chair Vaunda Brown took some time to discuss her thoughts on the festival’s Best of the Valley win for best festival or other community event.

How has the festival changed during the years? It’s grown tremendously. The first festival we may have had 1,000, now we have around 7,000 [attendees].

What does this win mean? It’s a tremendous honor and we’re so grateful we have supporters in the community. It’s a perfect collaboration between private [business] and government. It’s truly a grassroots effort. [The win] says a lot about our community. It’s helped in paving the road to making us the friendly city that we claim to be.

What makes the festival so popular? We’re probably Har-

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risonburg’s best-kept secret. It’s a place where families can come out and really experience diversity. It’s a day in the park; there are a lot of wonderful things to do. Some of our finest restaurants got their start at the festival. The food and the music are really big draws. It’s like File photo by Michael Reilly traveling the world in your Michael Osendah and Yesutor Kotoka, members of the Kusun own backyard. Ensemble from Roanoke, perform dances from the West African What is your favorite part nation of Ghana at last year’s International Festival.

of the event? Seeing all the smiles on people’s faces does it to me every time. The food is pretty good, too!


What do you think sets you apart from other festivals in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County?

to our fans, volunteers and sponsors for your support and votes.

Admission is free, it is very diverse and it only focuses on cultures from around the world.

What can people who haven’t yet been expect from the festival? We present music from around the world, art [and] food that you normally wouldn’t eat. We educate in an [understated] and entertaining way.

Would you like to say anything to the Best of the Valley voters? Thank you so very much! This is quite an honor. We’re very proud. To top the fair? I can’t believe it! Contact Laura Rennie at 5746280 or

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Best of the Valley 2011

Ten Thousand Villages Voted Best Store That Sells Handcrafted Art By LAURA RENNIE Daily News-Record

With Putumayo music playing and samples of fair trade coffee offered throughout the day, visitors stepping through the door of Ten Thousand Villages may feel that they have entered an exotic, far-off land. Located downtown at 181 S. Main St., Ten Thousand Villages is a fair-trade retail store that sells a wide variety of handmade goods, including wooden serving bowls, crafts made

from recycled newspaper and brightly colored scarves and handbags. The store, part of a larger chain that has more than 70 locations in the U.S., was located at the Dayton Farmers Market for 14 years before moving downtown earlier this year. Executive director Valerie Weaver was elated by the news that the store won a Best of the Valley award for best store that sells handcrafted art and happily answered some questions concerning the win.

Why did you make the move to downtown from the Dayton Farmers Market? While we enjoyed the atmosphere and everyone that worked at the farmers market, we felt that we were not maximizing our mission of selling handmade crafts for our artisans in developing countries by being open only three days a week. A move to our own storefront gives us the flexibility to be open more days and hours and the opportunity to offer educational programs about fair trade.

What does this win mean for you and your business? This win means that people are already aware that we are downtown. It will give us more exposure, which hopefully will spike the interest of others to come see what we have and learn about fair trade.

What do you think sets you apart from other handmade goods shops in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County?

File photo by Nikki Fox

Kathleen Overby Webster browses handcrafted items at Ten See VILLAGES, Page 38 Thousand Villages.

Harrisonburg, Va.


Thursday, May 26, 2011




Thursday, May 26, 2011

Store Offers Jewelry, Toys, Art

Some Say Downtown Still Needs Improvement for unique shopping and dining spots. Of course, the Best of the Valley also offers its voters the chance to suggest improvements to Harrisonburg, and downtown picked up its share of “needs improvement” marks: no more “high rise” buildings in downtown; build a pedestrian mall around Court Square; more traffic and bike lanes and fewer poorly-timed traffic lights. Bumbaugh said HDR has wrestled with most of the issues in past years, most notably in 2002, when the city considered following the lead of Winchester and Charlottesville and building a pedestrian mall downtown. But, with U.S. 11 being the city’s Main Street, he said the decision was made to maintain the integrity of this historic and vital Valley thor-

oughfare and keep it open to traffic while continually improving the sidewalks and general appearance of the district. “Communities across the nation have found … not to try to be something you’re not,” he said of the decision. Even with downtown sweeping nearly half the categories, other areas of Harrisonburg emerged as favorites of BOV voters, some returning for yet another year of accolades. Skyline Drive, Purcell and Hillandale parks, El Charro, Taste of Thai, The Artistic Florist and The Hackens Boys have yet to cede their sunny spots in the winner’s circle. Several new categories were added, including best store that sells handcrafted art (winner: Ten Thousand Villages) and best festival or other community event (winner: The International Festival), allowing vot-

ers to pick even more things that make the city a wonderful place in which to live and do business. When asked about what they’d like to change about the city, some perennial favorites emerged — voters still want to see an Olive Garden, they still consider Heritage Oaks Golf Course a waste of money, they adore the mountain views and rue the lack of upscale specialty shops, they love and loathe the presence of James Madison University. But maybe these are normal reactions in an area that seems to be on the grow, as some readers noted. “Small town feel but getting larger — yeah!” said one voter. “Still somewhat of a small town — people still care about each other,” said another. Contact Rachel Bowman at 5746292 or



Our business model uses fair trade practices which include paying mutually agreed fair prices for artisans’ creations, consistent orders which support artisans’ long-term planning and design collaboration that uniquely merges our North American world with the world of our artisans. We also emphasize environmentally sustainable practices using recycled and natural materials. One of the most unique characteristics about the store is that we carry heirloom quality hand-knotted Oriental rugs that are all made by fairly paid adults. We also sell fair trade coffee, tea and chocolate.

What do you think is the key to your appeal to DN-R readers? Our customers enjoy the uniqueness of our handcrafted products and they can feel good knowing they are making a difference in the lives of others. Customers can shop our store supporting our local economy and we

are supporting artisans so they can stay in their communities to support their families. [We also have a] good location on Main Street.

What do you think customers most enjoy about the store? The store is fun and lively. We offer unique jewelry, musical instruments, planters, toys, art pieces, Oriental rugs and home decor. We engage our customers and enjoy telling them about our products.

Would you like to say anything to the Best of the Valley voters? We are thrilled to be one of the best and thank each of the voters for this honor. Please share your find with others so we can continue to celebrate culture and embrace community. If you love the store and would like to become one of our volunteers, please stop by and speak with one of us! Contact Laura Rennie at 574-6280 or

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Harrisonburg, Va.

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Harrisonburg, Va.

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

Move Downtown Helped Festival, Businesses MACRoCk

Traci White / DN-R

Oldermost, a band from Philadelphia, performs at the Artful Dodger on the first night of MACRoCk 2011.

Traci White / DN-R

Emily Cahill of Gypsy Death & You does a sound check before the group’s performance at Downtown 34 at MACRoCk in April.


the budget for the conference’s 10th anniversary show and were hit with more than $15,000 of debt when they started planning for the next year. The MACRoCk committee opted to take a timeout. It canceled the 2007 show and transitioned from an official JMU club to an incorporated independent business. Harper Holsinger, head coordinator of the conference at the time, led MACRoCk’s move off-campus and helped to bring the entire event downtown in 2008. “It’s been a great move,” said Holsinger, who now works at JMU. “You can build a relationship with the community and the venues. You’re helping each other out.” Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance helps out as a liaison between MACRoCk organizers and venues. More than a half dozen businesses — including Clementine Café, The Little Grill and Court Square Theater — host musical showcases broken up by genres. The move downtown made sense logistically, according to organizers. Clustering the shows in one central location saves attendees from driving all over Harrisonburg. On a more altruistic level, the partnership matched

two groups with similar values, Holsinger said. Downtown businesses are locally owned and share the same sense of independence that MACRoCk was founded on. And from a business perspective, festivalgoers pump money and energy into downtown Harrisonburg. “It’s a very vibrant feeling. You see a lot of people on the sidewalks,” said Eddie Bumbaugh, executive director of HDR. “There are lines to get into some venues, restaurants and shops, and other attractions tend to be busier.” While the conference may have moved off-campus, JMU students still largely run MACRoCk on the 11-member volunteer committee. Each year, about 100 bands perform at

MACRoCk; one-third are booked and paid. The remaining groups, who must apply for a spot, play for free, but organizers say they try to provide the groups with accommodation and food to keep the bands’ expenses down.“We think every independent artist should have a fair chance to play,” said Phil Kim, a JMU junior and cocoordinator of next year’s conference. “We try to be as objective as we can.” MACRoCk is funded almost exclusively through ticket sales. Admission this year cost $25 for the weekend and $15 for a one-day pass. About 1,500 people attended the conference, Kim said. While attendees come to hear bands from all over the East Coast, the panels play an important role in the MACRoCk experience,

according to organizers. Discussions usually deal with issues important to college radio and independent music, but can branch out into topics, including politics and war. That’s why organizers like to make a distinction. MACRoCk is more of a conference than a festival, they point out. “There are tons of festivals about,” Holsinger said, “but I wouldn’t know of one that’s similar in that it provides the type of programming that we do and is also not-for-profit.” Or student-run, which means the committee steering MACRoCk is constantly changing. The focus, however, stays the same. Contact Doug Manners at 574-6293 or

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Thursday, May 26, 2011


Funk Published Periodical The Southern Musical Advocate And Singer’s Friend Funk II


Author Among Funk’s other projects was a German language songbook known as “Choral Music.” The musical parts were in bass and tenor. In later works, Funk added soprano. Funk wrote the book after noting the popularity of the 1816 hymnbook “Kentucky Harmony” compiled by Ananias Davisson, a Presbyterian living in Harrisonburg. To supplement his writing, Funk established a singing school at his home. His career as a singing instructor also took him on the road. “He seemed to love the singing school and a good deal of his time was spent teaching … sometimes teaching as many as eight [students] at a time,” Forster wrote. In 1847, Funk bought a printing press and established it in an outbuilding called the loom house.

The publishing business blossomed. ter, MacAllister said. By the 1850s, Funk had begun to publish the monthly periodical The South- Purpose All Funk’s life work had a consistent ern Musical Advocate and Singer’s purpose, according to Friend. Forster. The success of his A small museum The three principles printing and publishwould be very of Funk’s career were ing business helped God’s command to worpersuade the federal desirable. Funk family ship through song, that government of the and ‘Harmonia Sacra’ every Christian has the need for a post office at memorabilia will responsibility to offer Mountain Valley. certainly be praise through skillful When the post office song, and that song was established in 1860, welcome. I want it to brings along with it the name of the village continue to be a many earthly and spiriwas changed to Singers worship experience. tual blessings. Glen in Funk’s honor. In his monthly period“The family did want  Sam Showalter ical, he advocated that it a post office in the vilon plans for the Funk was the “Christian’s lage and needed a new homestead duty, to say nothing of name since there were privilege, to ultimate all other Mountain Valleys in the state, including in Rockingham of the talents which God has mercifully and kindly bestowed on him.” County,” MacAllister said. That kind of dedication helped spread Solomon Funk, who was the printer in the family business, was the first postmas- sacred music the world over, in time, in-

troducing millions to religious hymns and songbooks. In the preservation of the home, Showalter said the society wants to remain faithful to the composer and his music. The society is seeking nonprofit status to raise funds to rent or purchase the home for historical and musical purposes, Showalter said. No definite plans have been made, he said. Some possible uses are a society headquarters, venue for outdoor music performances and a small museum. “A small museum would be very desirable. Funk family and ‘Harmonia Sacra’ memorabilia will certainly be welcome,” he said. Any changes to the property, he said, would be in character with the home’s history, he said. “I want it to continue to be a worship experience,” he said. Contact Jeff Mellott at 574-6290 or



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

At JMU, Greeks Play Key Support Role Music Groups Help Further ‘Goals And Aspirations By JOSHUA BROWN

for about 180 performances a year,” Posey said. “They are all very important, both to the mission and to the functioning of these band programs.”

Daily News-Record

Similarities, Differences

HARRISONBURG — For many Americans, college Greek organizations likely conjure images from the 1978 movie “Animal House.” But for the men and women of the Greek music organizations at James Madison University, the groups are about much more than partying with friends. “It’s more about furthering music and supporting the goals and aspirations of the host institution,” said Bill Posey, the university’s director of concert and support services. JMU’s four Greek music organizations – Tau Beta Sigma, Kappa Kappa Psi, Sigma Alpha Iota and Phi Mu Alpha – advance the university’s music program in a host of ways, Posey said. Members of the group often volunteer in the music office as receptionists or in other ways. “One of the big things they do for the school of music is provide ushers

While the music fraternities and sororities are similar to social Greek organizations in that most have social components and require community service, they also have major distinctions, Fraternity and Sorority Life Coordinator Paul Whatley said. Despite not reporting directly to the FSL office, JMU does require that such organizations have an adviser, typically an employee of the school, Whatley said. Another difference between the Greek music organizations and the social groups is the level of support they receive from their national organizations, he said. Because service, professional and honor fraternities and sororities often have national organizations with fewer employees, they receive fewer visits from the top echelons. Also because of the smaller national organizations, the service groups don’t have as many opportunities for

leadership development through conferences and similar events, Whatley said. “For example, a lot of our fraternities have leadership retreats they can go to,” he said. Yet another difference is that music fraternities are subject to the federal Title IX legislation, which prohibits discrimination under any “educational program or activity” at institutions that receive federal funding, Whatley said. Title IX is most often associated with college athletics and giving women athletes the same levels of opportunity as their male counterparts. Traci White / DN-R Despite the Title IX stipulation, “the issue doesn’t really get forced,” Katie Lucca, a member of the Sigma Alpha Iota music sorority, Whatley said. serves as an usher for a performance at the Forbes Center for Members of the Phi Mu Alpha fra- the Performing Arts’ concert hall in May. ternity work for the university’s music program and hold recitals and concerts, President Frank Marsilio said. But they also volunteer in the community, promoting music by performing at places like retirement “Home of the Storage” homes, he said.

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Harrisonburg, Va.

Groups Sing In Retirement Homes Greeks


“We go there and we sing to different patients and bring them flowers and different carts to spread music into their lives,” he said. “It’s really interesting because a lot of times the patients in these places have de-

mentia or other …diseases. But we always leave there feeling like we’re appreciated.” The fraternity is open to students in any area of study, he said, but the common thread among its members is an interest in music. With their shared interests,

OUR VALLEY members of the organization are a close-knit group, providing a network of support for each other, Marsilio said. “It’s just having brotherhood and being able to have people that you can go to at any time if you’re having a bad day or something like that,” he said. The Tau Beta Sigma sorority is largely associated with the Marching Royal Dukes. Members

Thursday, May 26, 2011

volunteer for everything from repairing and distributing band uniforms to collecting recyclables after football games, President Sarah Klinger said. “Most of what we do is in the fall,” she said. Members also work in the music building with databases or prepare mailers for camps the school organizes, she said. While she enjoys “the service


part” of being in the sorority, Klinger said she enjoys also the “family part.” With her relatives living in New Jersey, the organization’s members are the next best thing. “It’s also a family I can rely on because my family is so far away,” she said. Contact Joshua Brown at 574-6286 or



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Harrisonburg, Va.

‘Country Music Is What Sells In This Area,’ Says Fair Manager Dennis Cupp Fair


“The Rockingham County Fair brings them right here to us … right to our doorsteps,” said Geiman, a watercolor artist who owns a shop in Augusta County. “When you leave, you have so many beautiful memories.”

A Growing Tradition The Rockingham County Fair first started entertaining Shenandoah Valley residents in 1949 at the now defunct Linville-Edom High School in northwestern Rockingham County. In 1953, the fair moved to farmland on Kratzer Road, where it became a fixture until 1979 when it sold the land to RR Donnelley. In 1980, the fair moved to its current location on South Valley Pike, just south of Harrisonburg’s city limits. While the Rockingham County Fair has always featured music, organizers started drawing national acts as the fair, and its main venue, the grandstand, continued to grow. In the last few years, the

grandstand has expanded from 2,500 seats to roughly 7,500. “We started small and kept building year after year,” said Jerry Weaver, who served as chairman of the entertainment committee from 1988 to 2002.

rows the list down further An artist in the middle of a tour on the West coast in August likely wouldn’t be available. Over the years, several bluegrass and contemporary Christian artists have hit the stage. And previously A-list rock bands now in the twilight of their careers — Picking is Tricky such as the Doobie BrothDuring his 14-year run ers, which played the Country music is leading the committee, 2010 fair — are popular what sells in this Weaver learned that pickas well. area. ... Jason ing the right musical act to The Beach Boys, set to Aldean was the headline the fair can be a headline the fair for the complicated process. second time in three years record-setter. He said a lot of factors go this August, are another.  Dennis Cupp, But country artists have into the selection. “You have to sort of get general manager of the been the largest draws. lucky,” he said. “Country music is what Rockingham County Fair The committee starts sells in this area,” said working with booking Dennis Cupp, the fair’s agents in November. general manager since 1982. First the committee forms a list of acts they would like to invite to the fair, and Country Rules When the fair gets lucky, it books upthat are in the price range the fair has and-coming acts who has a breakout hit available to spend. Then they look to see what artists are in or two just as the summer concert series the area at the time of the fair. That nar- begins, leading to A-list talent for a B-list

price and an artist that the fair wouldn’t normally be able to afford. In 1999, country music star Billy Ray Cyrus took the stage at he fairgrounds performing his hit song “Achy Breaky Heart.” The following year, Toby Keith played in Rockingham County. In 2001, Travis Tritt performed at the fair. In more recent years, several country music stars played the fair, including Trace Adkins, Dierks Bentley, Lonestar and Montgomery Gentry. While several of the shows drew large crowds, it was up-and-coming star Jason Aldean’s show in 2009 that netted the fair its first sold-out concert on the grandstand. Some 5,700 fans packed the venue to hear Aldean’s brand of contemporary country. Aldean’s career was on the upswing then and has only continued to soar in the two years since. “Jason Aldean was the record-setter,” said Cupp. Contact Pete DeLea at 574-6278 or

Harrisonburg, Va.


Thursday, May 26, 2011


INDEX 14th Annual International Festival..................35 A Touch of the Earth.......................................40 Ashby Animal Clinic........................................36 Audiology Associates......................................11 Awnings By Zirkles, Inc..................................42 B&J Coins.......................................................28 Blue Ribbon Nursery & Landscaping, LLC.....30 Blue Ridge Christian School...........................20 Blue Stone Inn Restaurant.............................16 Bridgewater IGA.............................................29 Bridgewater Inn & Cottage LLC.....................29 Bridgewater Retirement Community..............45 Briery Branch Lawn Party & Dog Show...........7 Broadway Automotive & Tire Ctr, Inc..............22 C&F Mortgage, Inc.........................................14 Caverns Country Club Resort..........................3 Cave Mansion..................................................3 Christ Presbyterian Church............................27 Christine’s Gold & Diamonds.........................11 Clementine.....................................................40 Concrete by Design........................................23 Cooks Creek Presbyterian Church.................27 Cornerstone Christian School........................20 Country Treasures..........................................14 CrossKeys Vineyards.....................................23 CrossRoads Heritage Center.........................27 Dayton Farmers Market....................................4 DePaul Community Resources......................19 Doug’s Discount Store......................................8 Downtown Music 34.......................................41 Downtown Wine & Gourmet...........................40 Dutch Way, LLC..............................................22 Edward Jones.................................................12 El Charro........................................................34 Evergrowin’ Greenhouses................................6 Fantastic Sams...............................................44 Finnigan’s Cove..............................................39 Fort Harrison....................................................7 Grandview Equipment, LLC...........................26 Granny Longlegs............................................41 Greenberry’s...................................................34 Greenthumb Nursery......................................13 Green Valley Auctions & Moving....................18 Hair Fashions By Michael...............................41

Harrisonburg Auto Detailers...........................10 Harrisonburg AutoMall..............................24, 25 Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance...........39 Harrisonburg Baptist Church..........................27 Harrisonburg Farmers Market........................39 Harrisonburg International Festival................35 Hart’s Automotive.............................................8 Hess Furniture................................................39 Hburg Rham Historical Society......................22 Heartland Outfitters & Feed............................21 HEC..................................................................9 Helmuth Builders Supply, Inc.........................14 Heritage Oaks Golf Course............................36 Hess Greenhouse..........................................35 HIS Insurance & Service Inc............................9 Hometown Music..............................................5 JJ’s Soft Serve...............................................28 Joe Bowman...................................................48 Keener Window & Door..................................10 Kline’s Dairy Bar.............................................35 La Bella Salon & Day Spa..............................10 L & O Fence LLC............................................10 Lambert Plumbing, Heating, & Cooling, Inc.. . . .4 Laughing Dog.................................................39 Layman Diener Borntrager...............................6 Martin’s...........................................................37 Massanetta Springs Church...........................26 Merle Norman.................................................41 Met Life...........................................................41 Minnick Termite & Pest Control, Inc................11 Montezuma Church of the Brethren...............27 Mossy Creek Excavating, LLC.......................11 Moyers Exterminating Co., Inc.......................29 Miracle Car Wash...........................................11 Mt. Olivet Christian Church............................27 N2Hair............................................................28 Needful Things.................................................5 New 2 Me Consignments...............................29 Oriental Cafe..................................................16 Page Valley Tobacco II...................................38 Park Gables Gallery.........................................5 Pet Grooming (All Breed Dog & Cat)...............9 Price’s Electric Motor Repair, Inc...................26 Quota International of Harrisonburg.................7

Ragtime Fabrics.............................................40 Ray’s Fine Jewelry & Gifts.............................19 Redeemer Classical School...........................20 RMH Orthopedics and Sports Medicine.........46 Rockingham Rent-All, Inc.........................12, 15 Romano’s Italian Bistro..................................16 RT Computer Systems...................................22 Shank Wholesalers, Inc..................................21 Shen-Valley Band Instrument Service, Inc.. . . .40 Shenandoah Caverns.....................................38 Shenandoah Heritage Market........................44 Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church. . . . . . .27 Silver Lake Mill...............................................18 Snyders Auto Sales, Inc.................................21 SPCA................................................................7 State Farm Insurance.....................................21 Staunton School of Cosmetology...................18 Sue’s Greenhouse..........................................30 Sunnyside Communities.................................43 The Appliance Hospital...................................40 The Artful Dodger...........................................41 The Guitar & Amp Center...............................29 The Hackens Boys.........................................34 The Service Kings..........................................28 The Shenandoah Valley Choral Society...........7 The Shoppes at Mauzy..................................30 The Smokin’ Pig.............................................41 Thomas House Restaurant............................16 Timberville Drug Store....................................28 Trans Tech......................................................15 Union Station Restaurant & Bar.....................40 Valley Avon.....................................................28 Valley Implement Sales, Inc...........................42 Valley Polaris..................................................15 Valley Pride Compost.....................................11 Valley Stone Slinger Services........................12 Valley Structures............................................44 Video Kingdom...............................................46 Wayside Produce.............................................8 White Birch Communities...............................13 Whitesel Music ..............................................39 Wood Grill.......................................................17 WSVG 790 AM...............................................26



Thursday, May 26, 2011

2011 Cruze

Harrisonburg, Va.

2011 Volt Limited Production & Availability

2011 Camaro

2011 Traverse

2011 Silverado

May is Chevy Military Appreciation Month. Special Military discounts for Active/Reservist/Retirees and their Spouses. SEE DEALER FOR DETAILS - EXCLUDES TAX, TAGS, TITLE AND $199 PROCESSING FEE.

Profile for Daily News-Record

Our Valley 2011  

Local business, sights and sounds tabloid

Our Valley 2011  

Local business, sights and sounds tabloid


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