Entertainment

Good times on tap with Coombs fiddlers

Coombs Old Time Fiddlers are a common and welcome sight at many local community events in Oceanside, but  this weekend, they’ll be joined by musical colleagues from around the Island at the Coombs Rodeo Grounds. - Neil Horner
Coombs Old Time Fiddlers are a common and welcome sight at many local community events in Oceanside, but this weekend, they’ll be joined by musical colleagues from around the Island at the Coombs Rodeo Grounds.
— image credit: Neil Horner

There is a great and affordable way to celebrate and foster the delightful old time music of Canada this weekend as the Coombs Old Time Fiddlers host their annual Jamboree and Dance Saturday, Sept. 17 from 1 to 10 p.m. at the Coombs rodeo grounds.

The afternoon Open Stage offers artists an opportunity to sign up and demonstrate their talents on instruments and vocals. This is followed by a special featured performance by Sarah Tradewell, a young fiddler extraordinaire currently attending the University of Victoria.

Tradewell who has been fiddling for quite a few years lives in the capital but is a member of the Coombs club. She recently won the provincial old time fiddling championship July 1 in Cumberland.

“We are excited to have her play,” said Coombs member Bruce Fodder.  He added it is a high honor to win the B.C. title and she will be moving onto the National championships with her accomplishment.

The evening Old Time Dance includes great waltzes, polkas, two-steps, schottisches and reels played by Old Time Fiddlers bands from Coombs, Port Alberni and the Comox Valley.

Foden said it will be a great jam and people can expect to hear a variety of music genres including bluegrass, celtic, country and other traditional styles that trace back to Scotland and Ireland.

And while the local music club may be called Old Time Fiddlers Foden assured us that their group is far from a bunch of old timers plucking on a banjo.

Foden said they would like to change the perception that you have to be old to be part of the group. Members of the club range in age from 13 to 94 and Foden said there are about 60 members in the Coombs club.

He admits that there are more old timers who perform at care homes in the area mainly because the musicians have retired from their day jobs and now have the time to perform at various day time functions.

The group’s Thursday night dances will be commencing Sept. 22, at 7:30 p.m. at Rotary House in Qualicum Beach and Foden said they usually get a turn out of up to 40 people each week for the dance. He said the number of musicians vary from week to week but most often there is a gang of fiddlers, some guitar players, folks on banjo, mandolin and wash tub base.

“It’s a great jam when we get together. We play all genres and try to play a lot of Canadian music.”

Afternoon admission for Saturday’s jamboree is $5, free for performers and children under age 12.

The evening admission is also $5.

An old-time country style supper will be served and there will be door prizes galore to make the evening memorable.

There is dry camping available on the Rodeo Grounds.

For information about this entertaining event, call either Roy at 250-752-3636 or Nell at 250-752-4185.

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