Dillard Bluegrass Festival celebrates mountain heritage and traditions

  • Wayne Knuckles/The Clayton Tribune. Nick Chandler, who leads Nick Chandler and Delivery, takes the stage Friday at the Dillard Bluegrass Festival.
    Wayne Knuckles/The Clayton Tribune. Nick Chandler, who leads Nick Chandler and Delivery, takes the stage Friday at the Dillard Bluegrass Festival.
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DILLARD—As the sweet strains of mandolins and mournful wail of fiddles played in the background, Barbara Owens Delong talked Friday about her childhood days growing up on Scaly Mountain, attending school in Dillard and listening to picking and singing every chance she got.

“This is something that’s very much needed for our generation and the next generation, to keep the music going,” Delong said of the Dillard Bluegrass Festival, which was held last weekend on the lawn of the old elementary school, now city hall, where she played as a school child.

“This music is the mountain thing that we grew up with, and we can’t let it die, we have to keep it going,” Delong said. “This is our roots, too.”

Delong recalled that when she was young, a child living on Scaly Mountain had choices for getting an education.

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