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Popular 'old-time' Eady Hall Fiddle Jam goes to the (service) dogs

'It makes you feel good to give back to the community,' says event organizer, noting more than $8,000 has been raised for COPE Service Dogs

More than 100 people showed up for the annual Fiddle Jam on Saturday at Eady Hall in Oro-Medonte.

While the focus is on fiddling, the event also raises funds for COPE Service Dogs.

Ralph Price, who organizes the event with his wife, Sandy, says the "old-time" event has been a success in its first three years. It has raised more than $8,000 for COPE.

"I'm a bit of a hustler and promoter," Price said with a laugh. "I'm always promoting it in terms of flyers and speaking about it. I put stuff up on any website or Facebook page I can."

COPE is a worthy beneficiary of the event, Price says. The organization provides highly skilled service dogs to people with disabilities to enhance the lives of youth experiencing challenges.

"When we saw what COPE does, we thought, 'Let's do something to give back to them,'" Price said. "It makes you feel good to give back to the community."

He says the annual Fiddle Jam always has an upbeat atmosphere. It starts with an acoustic jam for all musicians with dancing and square dancing.

"The music's going, the people's feet are tapping, and there are smiles on people's faces," he said. "The people that are here don't go away without enjoying themselves."

Square dancing is "kind of an older person's thing," Price says, but he hopes the event will continue for years to come.

"We'll do it as long as we're physically able to," he said. "It gets harder to lug the sound equipment every year, but we'll keep doing it as long as we can."

Each year, the event takes place on International Fiddle Day, which always falls on the third Saturday of May.

At the end of each event, which runs for four hours, Price feels accomplished, especially when all the feedback is positive.

"People will come to us and thank us for doing it," he said. "It's nice hearing that people have had a good day."

One of the objectives of the event is to keep elderly people healthy, active and happy.

"There is so much negativity in the world," he said. "This is such a positive experience."


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Tyler Evans

About the Author: Tyler Evans

Tyler Evans got his start in the news business when he was just 15-years-old and now serves as a video producer and reporter with OrilliaMatters
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