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The 3rd annual festival was held on Oct.11, 2008 in Sumner Illinois.

"We had a great festival! We would like to thank our instructors: Tull Glazener, Molly McCormack, Jon Hall, Guy George, Chris Carlisle, Denny Jackman, Marilyn Barrett, Bob and Sherri King for sharing with us their time, talents, and knowledge. The Red Hill Dulcimer Society would also like to thank this year's vendors: Doug's Music, Wood-N-Strings, Kayla Barry, and Greibhaus Instruments. Thanks to everyone who participated and made this year our best festival yet.

We are currently in the planning stages for the 4th Annual Red Hill Dulcimer Festival. We will update this site with next year's faculty list, the date of the festival, and the class schedule as soon as possible."

News Release


Attendance triples at Sumner Music Festival
by Jerry Pacholski

“You have arrived. This festival is amazing, considering it’s only in the third year. You should be proud.” said Jon Hall, nationally known guitar, mandolin and banjo teacher and performer who was an instructor at the Red Hill Music Festival, held Saturday, October 11,2008 in Sumner, Illinois. “I have been to a lot of festivals and I have never been treated as nicely as I have here,” he continued.

The first Red Hill Festival was held in October, 2006 and 40 people took music classes in lap and hammered dulcimer, penny whistle, guitar, banjo, mandolin and autoharp. This year, the event, hosted by the Red Hill Dulcimer Society had 140 music students register for classes and almost 200 people filled the sanctuary of the United Methodist Church to capacity for a free concert by the hosts and the instructors.

Chris Carlisle, another performer and song writer who traveled from Frankfort, Ky. to teach for the second year at the Festival, echoed Hall’s words. “ I have taught at a number of festivals. This is one of the best. This club has done so much in just three years. This year, I brought my wife with me, just to meet these folks. I would love to be invited back.”

Sumner mayor, Betty Brian, who officially welcomed the crowd, has been a strong supporter of the Festival for its three years. “Its wonderful what this group has done. The music is great and to see all the people they have brought to our city is amazing.” People came from as far as Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, and Michigan as well as all parts of Indiana, Kentucky and Illinois. They ranged from accomplished veteran musicians who were seeking to learn the finer points of their art from nationally recognized teachers like Tull Glazener, Molly McCormack, Guy George, Hall and Carlisle to beginners who wanted to learn the basics from local instructors like Marilyn Barrett, Bob and Sherry King and Dennis Jackman. Lawrenceville attorney Dan Shinkle and his daughter Illana came to the festival with the idea of observing one beginner class and then going home. They ended up buying pennywhistles, staying for the full day’s classes and attending the concert. “This is wonderful. Where could you learn so much and have so much fun for just a few dollars?” said Shinkle.

In addition to the classes and the free concert, vendors were available to sell instruments, CD’s and music related goods to the attendees. “We did better in one day, here, than we did at two days at the Memphis festival” said Kayla Berry who came from Michigan to sell embroidered clothing and accessories. “I will be back next year.”

The public was invited to the concert and music lovers filled even the church’s organ loft. The Red Hill Dulcimer Society opened the act followed by Marilyn Barrett who performed on the autoharp. Bob and Sherry King , from Vincennes followed with duets on the courting dulcimer. Both have performed at the two previous festivals. They were followed by Chris Carlisle, a club favorite, who has written the group’s theme song “Red Hill Revival.” Guy George performed on hammered dulcimer, pennywhistle, soprano sax and steel drum while accompanied by Tull Glazener. They, in turn were joined by Molly McCormack and Jon Hall. The audience was treated to a variety of music ranging from Irish O’Carolan tunes to the samba of “ Tico, Tico” and the ‘20’s Charleston rag “Stumblin” as well as country and pop classics.

After the festival, the members of the Red Hill Dulcimer Society, exhausted but happy, expressed their feelings. “How could you have a better promotion for this area? We showed what Lawrence county has to offer” said Paul Umfleet. “This worked out so well. The United Methodist Youth catered the lunch and had a successful fund raiser and everyone was so complementary about our hospitality,” added Joan Brian.

“The club worked together so hard to make this a success,“ said Society president Brad Schilt “and the community supported us. There is such a long “thank you” list- Rucker’s, People’s State Bank, Allendale bank, McKim’s IGA, the United Methodist church and the youth group, the Daily Record, the Leader and the Press, WAKO and the Chamber of Commerce for the publicity and many others. And the biggest thanks goes to all the churches, schools, nursing homes and community groups who invited us to play for them over the last year. Wait ‘til next year’s Festival.”