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Fair hopes to re-ignite fiddling tradition

(From left) Carlie, Sophia and Olivia Cunningham have been playing the fiddle — and competing — for several years. The sisters will be participating in the youth division of the Fiddlers Contest at the Kingdom of Callaway County Fair Saturday night.

(From left) Carlie, Sophia and Olivia Cunningham have been playing the fiddle — and competing — for several years. The sisters will be participating in the youth division of the Fiddlers Contest at the Kingdom of Callaway County Fair Saturday night. (Contributed photo)

The best way to draw area residents out to the Fiddlers Contest at the Kingdom of Callaway County Fair Saturday night likely would be to borrow a page from the greeting card industry. A sound chip glued in between the pages of the newspaper playing a jaunty jig or reel as the pages are turned could give a taste of what is to come.

That may not be a feasible option, but fair board organizers and local fiddling fans are hoping Callawegians still will be lured out by the promise of the return of a longtime fair tradition when the contest returns at 6 p.m. after an almost decade-long absence.

“I think people just missed it and wanted it to come back,” fair board secretary Brenda McCray said of the decision to bring the fiddling contest back this year after it previously was cut because of budget concerns. “There were a lot of people that wanted us to bring it back, because the fiddlers’ contest has been around for years — every fair, almost, has one.”

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