Thursday, 26 April 2018 05:06

Music The Main Attraction for Norman Jamboree

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Norman Jamboree Norman Jamboree Image courtesy of Norman Jamboree Committee

NORMAN - Everyone knows about the town in the northern end of Richmond County's annual festival in the fall, but Mayor Kenneth Broadway is trying to expand on that tradition by starting another one in the spring - the Norman Chick-N Pick-N Bluegrass/Country Jamboree taking place tomorrow, Saturday the 28th.

 It's definitely a mouth-full, but event goers will find their ‘mouths full’ of good eats and bands and musical talents with their ‘mouths full’ of different genres of music. 

"With a new stage now, the Town of Norman has had hopes of doing a spring event opposite Norman Fest," said Broadway. "We want the antique tractors, the bluegrass/country, and Americana music totally opposite of the fall." 

Music, food and craft vendors will be the main focal point of the event but new to this shindig will be a parade of antique tractors, classic cars, and a motorcycle ride. Broadway calls them "Big kids toys." 

"This will be our first attempt in doing the antique tractors show," said the mayor. "I talked about it a couple of years back, but it was all talk. Now, maybe it will be a reality." 

The set-up time for everyone, including vendors, will be from 11 to 11:45 a.m., and then it's on to the music part of the jamboree. The bands will start with Uwharrie Pickers from noon to 12:45 p.m., followed by Flint Hill Bluegrass at 1, Abigail Dowd taking the stage at 2, Flint Hill coming back at 3 and the Rockabilly band The Rusted Nails finishing up from 4 to 5:30 p.m. 

Dowd, who's style of music is described as Americana, is the great-granddaughter of John Hancock of Norman and the granddaughter of Horace and Beal Webb. She sang at her church in Norman when she was only three years old and taught herself how to play guitar on Hancock's instrument. She later studied classical style. 

Dowd moved to Florence, Italy, with that guitar and later to Maine to continue her musical career. Many of her written songs have ties to the Town of Norman, and rightfully so. From the Norman Stage, Dowd will be able to look over at her grandfather's house across the street, and the barber/music shop that Hancock used to own once sat next to where the stage currently stands. Dowd is planning on releasing another album later this year, but Saturday's performance will be her first in the town since she was three. 

"Our music, either you like it or you don't, but we're hoping that you do," Broadway said. "I studied for months putting bands together hoping for a good combination. It's a very good combo of a little hometown, a little country, and overall a lot of great music." 

The stage is ready and the sound technicians are some of the best in the business, according to Broadway. One has a 4-year degree at NC State and is the keyboard player for The Sand Band, while the other has a 2-year associate’s degree in sound. 

"Quality is what I look for in sound," said Broadway. "Those two keep up with the new state-of-the-art equipment when it comes to audio." 

The Biker Blessing Ride was organized by Mountain Creek Church of God of Prophecy with the cost being $10 for single riders and $15 for those riding double. Bikers will also get their choice of chicken or fish to eat for free. Those participating are asked to meet at the red community building across from the jamboree between 11 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. Kickstands will go up at 1:00 p.m. For more information on the bike ride, contact Sally Ingram at 910-997-1524. 

In addition to chicken and fish, hot dogs, baked goods, ice cream and more will be available to eat-in or take-out. It's not exactly food one would find on the farm, but Broadway does want to use this event to let farmers know they're not forgotten. 

"Farming is our biggest commodity up in the northern part of our county, especially poultry farming," he said. "So why not aim our event to recognize the ones who are the backbone of our nation: the farmers. Norman has been a rural town, and if not for today's farmers, we might not exist." 

Although Mother Nature is trying to make things difficult by changing the weather on a daily basis for this weekend, Broadway is holding out hope that sunshine will prevail by the time Saturday rolls around. 

"We're hoping for a wonderful day. The weather man keeps changing the temperature on Saturday. Earlier last week they had us at 80 degrees. Two days later they had 70 and then 68." Broadway later joked, "Who knows, we might see snow." 

The Norman mayor is also hoping that by getting this new event off the ground, it will be a springboard for fresh ideas when it comes to the fall Norman Fest. 

"By doing this spring event, I'm in hopes it will bring in new ideas for Norman Fest in the fall so come and enjoy," he concluded. "We hope to see a lot of people there." 

For more information about the Norman Jamboree, those interested can call Broadway at 910-997-1524 or email him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Last modified on Thursday, 26 April 2018 09:24