Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Garden State Sacred Harp Singing Convention

Montclair, New Jersey

May 13-14 2005

Friday, May 13

The thirteenth annual session of the Garden State Sacred Harp Singing Convention was held at Montclair Friends Meetinghouse in Montclair, New Jersey on Friday and Saturday before the third Sunday in May. The class was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Gina Balestracci who led 59, then offered the opening prayer.

A business meeting was held with the following officers elected or appointed to serve: Chair—Gina Balestracci; Vice Chair—Susan Bingham; Secretary—Barbara Swetman; Treasurer—Dick Levine; Chaplain—Lamar Matthew, George Seiler, and Ellie Soler; Arranging—Laura Densmore; Memorial Committee—Gina Balestracci and Lamar Matthew; Housing—Susan Bingham.

Leaders: Dick Levine 34b; Susan Bingham 30t; Laura Densmore 148; Dennis Leipold 33b; Eileen Metzger 383; George Seiler 99; Thom Metzger 216; Margaret Bornick 24 (t? b?); Ellie Soler 504; Ron Bornick 84; Clare Chapman 501; Roland Hutchinson 147b; Bob Parr 327; Gerry Hoffman 87; Bill Holt 448t; Barbara Swetman 71; Gina Balestracci 108t.


The class was called to order by Barbara Swetman leading 31b. Leaders: Guy Bankes 297; Cindy Sadler 390; Aldo Ceresa 29t; Miriam Kilmer 178; Ted Stokes 394; Tim Slattery 66; Diane Mennella 107; Linda Griggs 522; Gina Balestracci 532; Dick Levine 350; Susan Bingham 454; Laura Densmore 384; Dennis Leipold 282; Eileen Metzger 76b; George Seiler 159; Thom Metzger 89; Margaret Bornick 312b; Ellie Soler 277; Ron Bornick 276; Clare Chapin 77b; Roland Hutchinson 313b; Bob Parr 270; Gerry Hoffman 61; Karen Wilcox 40; Jean Seiler 217; Bill Holt 155; Barbara Swetman 65; Guy Banks 442; Cindy Sadler 396; Violet Krumbein 37b; Aldo Ceresa 215; Miriam Kilmer 378b; Ted Stokes 55.

Gina Balestracci led 34b to close the Friday session. George Seiler offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Saturday, May 14

Gina Balestracci called the class together at 10:00 a.m. leading 173, then offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: Dick Levine 479; Susan Bingham 446; Dave Hough 384; Rick Johnston 172; Molly Sayvetz 501; Chris Holley 29t; Tom Malone 30b; Paula Picton 31t; Lamar Matthew 317; Katharine Hough 480; Tim Slattery 168; Bradford West 319; Nora Dunn 81t; Frank Evans 229; Inga Knets 272; Dennis Leipold 455; Nancy Kennard 535; Hal Kunkel 304; Michael Kaye 112; Eileen Metzger 379; George Seiler 485; Charlotte Ehrman 340; Gina Balestracci 72b.


The class resumed singing with Diane Mennella leading 300. Leaders: Ellie Soler 358; Margaret Bornick 182; Berk Meitzler 171; Thom Metzger; Lynne deBenedette 203; Patricia Geritz 274t; Ron Bornick 178; Brenda Peña 325; Clare Chapin 510; Bob Parr 419; Anne Johnston 70b; Diane Mennella 477; Gerry Hoffman 503.

Gina Balestracci conducted the memorial lesson, read the following list of deceased, and led 159 in their memory: John Hocutt and J.C. Hardin—Alabama; Steven Hough—California; Nancy Mullenex and Mary Ann Williamson—Washington, D.C.; Alice Kendrick—Connecticut; Anne Shea—Florida/Minnestota; Anne Broussard, Mary Chyba, and Dawn Culbertson—Maryland; Elise Balestracci Lawless—Massachusetts; Rod Roach—New England; Constance Booth, Cheryl Doehler, and Tom Gibney—New Jersey; Allen Fannin, Marie Hanss, Susan Hilton, Irv Kass, Marilyn Mowry, Roxanna Mennella, Roy Schoenberger, and Abe Waintrob—New York; John Martin—Rhode Island; Dick Kelley—Vermont; Mike Finucan and Diane Knippers—Virginia; Burkhard Jost—Munich, Germany. Lamar Matthew offered prayer for the deceased.

Gina Balestracci read the following list of sick and shut-ins and led 472 in their honor: Kayla Solino and Caroline Cherry—New Jersey; Mary McNeill—Virginia; Robin Creamer, Gene Reid, and Laura Timmerman—Massachusetts; Ann Sayvetz—Illinois; John Van Soronsin—Maine; Marilyn Darch—California; Adrianne Cammarata and Mary Ellen Schrock—New York; Shelbie Sheppard—Alabama. Lamar Matthew closed the memorial lesson with prayer.

Leaders: Laura Densmore 377; Barbara Swetman 196; Cindy Sadler 475; Bill Holt 550; Jean Seiler 217; Aldo Ceresa 224; Guy Bankes 474; Miriam Kilmer 285t; Ted Stokes 545. Ellie Solar said grace for the noon meal.


The afternoon session was brought to order by George Seiler leading 68b. Leaders: Rick Johnston 205; Lynne deBenedette 192; Michael Kaye 298; Gerry Hoffman 142; Hal Kunkel 105; Inga Knets 76b; Lamar Matthew 162; Katharine Hough 85; Bradford West 426b; Paula Picton 43; Bill Holt 376; Berk Meitzler 496; Nora Dunn 495; David Hough 282; Clarice Kiercuff 84; Dianne Mennella 349; Bob Parr 200; Gina Balestracci 210.


Gina Balestracci brought the class to order leading 30t. Leaders: Molly Sayvetz 299; Tom Malone 240; Dennis Leipold 416; Chris Holley 268; Jean Seiler 273; Eileen Metzger 315; Guy Banks 351; Ellie Solar 361; Thom Metzger 29b; Anne Johnston 146; Ron Bornick 454; Brenda Peña 39b; Margaret Bornick 155.

A business session was held to hear committee reports. The Secretary reported seventy attendees from fourteen states were registered and fifty-one leaders led 136 tunes (plus 7 after the report is a total of 143 tunes).

The treasurer reported expenses were met with a small surplus to begin next year. Gina Balestracci thanked all those who devoted their time and efforts to make the convention possible.

Leaders: Charlotte Ehrman 365; Cindy Sadler 546; Patricia Geritz 378 (t? b?); Clare Chapin 163b; Linda Griggs 522; Aldo Ceresa 430.

Gina Balestracci led 62 as the closing song, and the Chaplain dismissed the class with prayer.

Chair—Gina Balestracci; Vice Chair—Susan Bingham; Secretary—Barbara Swetman.