Thursday, April 22, 2010

Pinckneyville Barn Dance

This past weekend, a number of us went to a barn dance held in Pinckneyville, IL.  The Pickin' Chicks were scheduled to play during the regular band's break -- it was a spur of the moment thing -- but we thought it would be a fun night.

Now, this was really and truly an old time barn dance.  It is apparently an annual event held at the Timpner Barn.  And let me tell you, this is no ordinary barn!  First off, here are some pictures I took with my camera phone.  Wish I had better ones, but these will have to do:

I don't know how much you know about barns, but this barn has no trusses.  Each of those long, curved roof supports is actually a veneer of four pieces of wood put together.  From the second story loft, which is where we were, to the top of the barn is probably 30 feet.  Normally, the barn loft is filled with hay, but once a year, when the hay is gone, Bill Timpner hosts a huge barn dance.  No drinking and no smoking.  All family oriented.  Everyone brings food to share and there is plenty of water and soda.

Bill is one of the nicest men I have ever met.  He is in his 80's, but you would never know it!  He taught us how to do the Virginia Reel and also one particular square dance.  There were probably 5 or 6 squares, and after he taught us, the band played and he called the square dancing.  I think one of the things that really made it fun was that it was all ages, and I think most of us had no clue what we were doing!!!  With Bill's help, though, we got it.

Notice the wall to our left in the photo above.  That is actually part of the old gymnasium floor from the local high school.  It says "PANTHERS" on it.  Bill has anyone that played basketball there sign it.

I had a special treat regarding the band that night.  Two of my former students were playing in the band!  They are sisters Amanda and Gloria from Nashville.  Beautiful harmonies and beautiful twin fiddles!  The girls aren't actually members of the band, but were just filling in for the evening.  The music was fantastic!  Amanda invited me up to play a few songs, as well. 

The Pickin' Chicks did a wonderful job filling in during the band's break.  They played about 10 songs in all.  I was so proud!  Bill even pulled a vintage sign off his barn to give to the girls.  Thank you, Bill!!!  Take a look at the girls with their sign below:

Here's a video of The Pickin' Chicks playing Country Roads:

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