Crowds up at Old Settlers

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Good weather smiled on this year’s Old Settlers Reunion in Quitman. The 116th edition of the annual festival was a busy one.

On Wednesday’s opening night the Quitman-Lake Fork Kiwanis Bingo tables were full early in the evening and stayed that way throughout the four day affair. The event got a good start with the awarding of a $1,000 scholarship to Quitman High School graduate Ashton Midkiff who will attend the University of Texas this fall. The scholarship was given by the Old Settlers Association.

Old Settlers Reunion Association President Joe Wayne Reynolds was pleased. “We had a great turnout this year each night of the reunion. It was hot, but nothing like it was just a couple of weeks ago,” Reynolds said. “Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and having the good weather was probably the main reason we had the crowds we had.” Reynolds estimated over 3,000 people enjoyed the reunion this year.

The opening night under the pavilion saw Dale “The C” Cummings entertaining with his special blend of rock n’ roll oldies. There were people dancing in front of the stage during his performance. “It was good to see so many people having a good time,” Cummings said. “The weather was a blessing. I love coming to Old Settlers and I think everyone had a good time.”

The Thursday night karaoke talent night saw 10 contestants in each age division. In the Under 18 category, Jayden Gregory won first place singing “Broken Wing” while second place went to Ann Marie Pendergrass. In the Over 18 division Mercedes Crumley walked away with the $50 first place prize singing “Crazy” while Jess Morse won second place after performing “Tennessee Whiskey.”

Friday night’s bluegrass gospel brought out a good crowd who had a great time listening to East Mountain Bluegrass and Right Direction Bluegrass. Saturday night, local band Monkey Grass had the crowd clapping their hands and many up dancing to some of their favorite country tunes.

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