The 2021 monsoon storms forced Payson’s Old Time Fiddle & Acoustic Celebration inside this past weekend.
It was supposed to be held at Green Valley Park, but was moved to the Payson High School auditorium due to the weather. The judges were guest artists Tashina Clarridge and Tristian Clarridge, along with Cody Stadelmaier.
There were 40 contestants that competed across the age divisions, with a total attendance of 500 for the three days.
Members of the Dietrich family took home quite a few prizes, including the Grand Champion title, which went to Brie Dietrich. She was part of the featured concert act, the Arizona Wildflowers, with her sisters Ranelle and Aspen. The group won the Battle of Bands competition in 2020, earning them the featured spot in the concert Friday night, Sept. 24, along with The Bee Eaters.
Performing with her sisters, Brie plays rhythm guitar and sings low harmony.
The age division winners were: Small Fry, Sawyer Dietrich; Junior-Junior, Aspen Dietrich; Junior, Ranelle Dietrich; Young Adult, Marion Lerner; Adult, Jess Barry; and Senior, Dave Brinkman. The specialty division winners were: Trick, The Dietrich Family; Hot Bow, Jess Barry; Twin, Jess and Elisa Barry; and Band Competition, Saguaro Scramblers.
The Town of Payson Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department thanked the staff of Payson High School, who assisted with the event on short notice and the volunteers who helped make this event a success.