Culpeper Mid-Day Lions hosted their annual Bland contest on Sunday, February 18th at the Culpeper Baptist Church. This event was arranged by Culpeper Mid-Day members Dr. Robert McCall and Mr. Justin McFarland and former Culpeper Host Lion, Dr. Phil Ferlazzo. This event celebrates the life of Mr. James Alan Bland, an African American musician and song writer. Mr. Bland was born to a free family in Flushing, New York. He began performing at the age of 14 and graduated from Howard University. Mr. Bland wrote more than 700 songs including “In the evening by the Moonlight,” “Oh them Golden Slippers”‘ and “Carry me back to Old Virginny”. He was often referred to as the Worlds Greatest Minstrel man. The judges for this event were Monroe Greeley and John Jewell. Mr. Greeley and Mr. Jewell judged the instrumental contestants. While, Mrs. Debbie Greeley and Ms. Gina Rossetti judged the vocal competitors. The local winners were Rachel Marie Cieplak, vocal, and Willa Faye Clore Instrumental. First runners up were Lindsay Joy Sanders ,Instrumental and Emma Ellon Butler, Voice. The local winners will compete against winners from Rappahannock County and the Instrumental winners from Zone 7. This contest will also be held at Culpeper Baptist Church on March 4th, 2018. The other contestants were Georgia Laine Clore, Piano; Laura A. Perez Cutright, Violin; Annalise-Rachel Dovel, Guitar and Marie-Clare Matricardi, Piano. First Prize winners received a check for $100.00 while first runners up received a check for $75.00. After the regional winners are selected they continue on to state competition. Final competition will result in the award of a $2,500 music scholarship to both vocal and instrumental winners. All local residents, especially music teachers in the local system are invited to attend the regional contest and cheer our candidates on.
The winner and first runner ups picture reading from Left to right are: Rachel Marie Ceiplak Vocal, Emma Ellon Butler, first runner up, Vocal, Willa Faye Clore Winner Instrumental and Lindsay Joy Sanders, First Runner up Instrumental.
The group picture of the contestants reading from left to right are: Laura Cutright, Georgia Clore, Annalise Dovel, Marie Matricardi, Willa Clore, Lindsay Sanders, Emma Butler and Rachel Cieplak.