Chewelah Peak Set for Two-Day Fiddle Contest, Workshops

  Everyone is invited to Fiddlers on the Peak – Fiddle and Pickin’ Contest June 1st and 2nd at the Chewelah Peak Learning Center. The weekend will get started on Friday afternoon with fiddle, mandolin, banjo and guitar workshops. Then Friday evening we will be having a dinner and our Entertainment Division with groups and individuals vying to win based on Musicianship, Costume, Stage Presence, and Audience Response.

It will definitely be an evening that you will not want to miss. Please come and enjoy a wonderful meal prepared by Chef Dan Delcupp and then be entertained by several different performances.

Dinner tickets are available at Valley Drug or by calling 936-1545. Tickets are $19.95 for an adult plate or $9.95 for a child’s plate and include a dinner of barbecued pork spare ribs, chicken, potato salad, macaroni salad, baked beans, corn on the cob, dinner roll, double chocolate brownie for dessert and the show. The dinner will be at 6 p.m. and the show will get started at 7 p.m. If you would like to come only for the show, tickets will be available at the door for $5 per person or $15 for the family.

Saturday morning will get off to an early start with registration at 8 a.m. and then the fiddling will get started at 9 a.m. There will be fiddling all morning and then after a break for lunch, there will some flat pickin’ music as the Pickin’ Contest gets underway. After the preliminary pickin’ round, the final fiddle rounds will be played, and then the final pickin’ rounds after dinner break. We will also have the judges play, which is always a real treat. There will be a lot of music all day so please come and enjoy it.

In case you’re wondering, what is a fiddle contest anyway? A fiddle contest is a fun, family event where musicians get together to compete, play music together, and have a lot of fun. The competition is broken up into different age groups (or divisions). There are two rounds of competitions and for each round, the fiddler plays three songs: a hoedown, a waltz, and a tune of choice. The competitors are scored by a panel of judges on timing, dance ability, fiddling ability, and intonation. The scores are then added and the top five scorers are moved on to the second round of competition. After completing the final round, first through fifth places are then awarded.

Another fun aspect of the competition is the Accompanist Division. Each fiddler is allowed up to three accompanists to play rhythm during their rounds. Usually the accompanists play guitar, but some play mandolin, banjo, or stand-up base. During the fiddle contest, the accompanists are also competing. Every time they are on stage backing someone up, it is keep track of and whoever is up there the most is the winner. Every accompanist is greatly appreciated – a contest just wouldn’t be the same without them.

At the Fiddlers on the Peak Contest there will also be a contest for those who play flat picking style on the guitar, mandolin, banjo, etc. This portion of the contest is referred to as the Pickin’ Contest. The Pickin’ Contest also has two rounds, but a picker only has to play two songs, a fast song and a slow song for their first round. And they only have to play one song for their second round. They are also scored on the same things as the fiddlers by a panel of judges.

So, whether you play an instrument and you would like to compete or you would just like to come to listen and observe, please plan on spending your first weekend of June up at the Peak with us. And please visit our website at

We would like to thank all of the individuals and businesses who have already sponsored this event. An event like this is not possible without sponsorship. We are still in need of more sponsorship, so if you or your business is interested in helping this event happen, please contact us at 936-1545.


Submitted by: Steve McNeil

In this Photo: A Fiddle and Pickin’ contest will take place at Chewelah Peak Learning Center June 1-2.