Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Minnesota State Sacred Harp Singing Convention

The Landing, Shakopee, Minnesota

September 21-22, 2013

Saturday, September 21

The 24th session of the Minnesota State Sacred Harp Singing Convention was called together by Angie Payne and Charlie Obert leading 171. Karen Swenson offered the opening prayer.

The following officers were elected or appointed to serve: Co-Chairpersons—Angie Payne and Charlie Obert; Arranging Committee—Anna Pfau and Matt Wells; Chaplain—Karen Swenson; Treasurer—Matt Wells; Secretary—Janell Draper.

Leaders: Barb Patterson 34b; Steve Luttinen 176t; Michael Shewmaker 84; Claudia Egelhoff 269; Myles Alexander 495; Hans Guttmann 480; Bill Waddington 474; John Seaton 47t (in gratitude that he is now cancer-free); Stacey Berkheimer 441; James Page 297; Midge Olsen 198; Michael Moore 460; Paul Wyatt 128; Leon Pulsinelle 388; Steven T. Schmidgall 473; Richard Popp 163t; Kevin Bullock 362; Beth Dixon 440.


Matt Wells brought the class back together by leading 117. Leaders: Johanna Fabke 350; Gordon Olsen and Carole Wilson 86; Leslie Williamson-White 99; Gary Gronau 384; Kim Bahmer 532; Pop Wagner 503; Dick Patterson 300; Alexa Copeland 399b; Doug Donley 424; Martha Henderson 396; Eamonn O’Neill 397; Christine Stevens 159; Wendy Popp and Emma Fitzgerald 335; Nathan Berry 156.


Anna Pfau brought the class to order by leading 129. Leaders: Tamara Harris 121; Jim Pfau and Steven T. Schmidgall 496; Bryan Seale 293; Ann Fox 45t; Thom Fahrbach 304; Judy Whiting 472; Chris Bracken 270; Cecelia Kramer 71; Roberta Strauss 203.

A business session was held. Denise Kania and Elise delMas were elected co-chairpersons for the February, 2014, Minnesota Midwinter Cooper Book Singing. Karen Swenson and Kevin Bullock were elected co-chairpersons of the September, 2014, Minnesota State Sacred Harp Singing Convention. After grace, which was offered by Dick Patterson, the class was dismissed for lunch.


Steven Levine recalled the class leading 59. Leaders: Cathy Lutz 383; Lisa Grayson 536; Robin Fox 189; Donna Gunderson-Rogers 228; Daire O’Sullivan 500; Rachel Hall 442; Julie Vea 419; Louis Hughes 166; Becky Browne 411 (in memory of Janet Lowry); Chris Brown 541; Natalie Jablonski 377; Laura Densmore 542; Kate Kirwan 522; Ben Copenhaver 518; Judy Hauff 434; Paul Figura 347 (with thanksgiving for the fellowship between the MN and MO singers, especially during Jim Hearne’s illness); Jessica Beer 105; Ted Mercer 275t; Jenny Willard 32t; Ann Gray 142; Alex Dixon 278b; Bonnie Ambrosi 312b; Noelle Copeland 528.


Karen Swenson recalled the class by leading 101t. Leaders: Jim Parson 191; Rochelle Lodder 39t; Pleasance Crawford 548; Louis Hughes, Jr. 77b; Melanie Hauff 421; Shirley Figura 318; Ann Sleeva 276 (for Jana); Melissa Kelley 182; Beth Todd 52t; Kit Canright 148; Ben Crawford 178; Elise delMas 299; Jim Crawford 315; Jeanette Nelson 107; Will Gilman 42; Eleanor Haase 352; Steve Copeland 569b; Janell Draper 566; Carol Buche 340; Denise Kania 29t.

Angie Payne and Charlie Obert led 146 to close. The class was dismissed with a prayer offered by Nathan Berry.

Sunday, September 22

The Sunday session of the Minnesota State Singing Convention was called to order by Angie Payne and Charlie Obert leading 48t. Donna Gunderson-Rogers offered the opening prayer.

Leaders: Denise Kania 40; Elise delMas 335; Karen Swenson 200; Kevin Bullock 30t; Donna Gunderson-Rogers 224; Kim Bahmer 386; Ben Copenhaver 141; Meg Parsons 171; Carol Buche 122 (in memory of Bud Oliver and Jeff Sheppard); Janell Draper 477; Richard Barnes 288; Melissa Kelley 475; Beth Dixon 277; Chris Brown 447; Kristine Peterson 162; Beth Todd 501; Gerry Skerbitz 218; Eleanor Haase 217.


Will Gilman recalled the class by leading 68b. Leaders: Robin Fox 535; Jeff Bell 337 (in memory of his mother); Steve Luttinen “Minnehaha” (his own composition); Michael Shewmaker 117; Alex Dixon 112; Lindsay Kruse 47b; John Seaton 58; Nathan Berry 124; Rochelle Lodder 313t; Paul Figura 479; James Page 351; Julie Vea 436; Richard Popp 196; Johanna Fabke 464; Michael Moore 487 (for Roger S. Walden).


Gordon Olsen recalled the class by leading 145b. Leaders: Jenny Willard 422; Hans Guttman 365.

The memorial lesson was conducted by Kevin Bullock and Steven T. Schmidgall. Kevin Bullock spoke on behalf of the sick and shut-ins, encouraging us to join our spirits with those members of the singing community who were unable to travel to the convention, but still join us in spirit. The following names were read: Claudene Townson, Phillip Wootten, C.T. and Kathy Williams, Sammie Oliver, Shelbie Sheppard, S.T. Reed, Diana Hauff Zwieg, Ed Hauff, Debbie Kaue, Ben Zachary, Howard Chaney, Dick Kennedy, Larry Durham, Mary Gorman, Sharon Waterman, Gary Hunt, Roger Brown, Maria Wallace, Margaret Steele, Karen Edwards, Chris Holley, Loraine Bayer, Berkley Moore, and Maria Stebbins. Kevin Bullock led 143 on their behalf.

Steven T. Schmidgall shared a story about Jeff Sheppard, and told us that when a singer dies, a piece of every one of us goes with that person to Canaan. When our own time comes to cross into Canaan, we shall know each other there. The following list of names of the deceased was read: William Popp and Jim Hearne—Missouri; Evelyn Steinruck—Pennsylvania; Diane Mennella—New York; Gail Heil, Tom Erickson, Pat Stevens, Jim Miller, Russ Harden, and Hiram Titus—Minnesota; Ted Egelhoff and Bob Anderson—Wisconsin; Cheryl Stroud—Quebec; Laura Bailey and Roger S. Walden—Michigan; Keith Ulatoski—Texas; Jeff Sheppard, Willard Wright, Bud Oliver, Lessie Reed—Alabama; John Merritt—Mississippi; Kelly Day and Reeve Donley—Ohio; Paul Silberman—Nevada; Barbara Hall—New Hampshire; Janet Bell—Maryland; Patrick Maslanka—Illinois; Eva Padgett—Florida; Margaret Hyde—Cork, Ireland. Steven T. Schmidgall led 54. The memorial lesson concluded with a prayer offered by Myles Alexander.

Leaders: Aubrey Hemminger 503. Paul Wyatt offered the lunch blessing.


Steven T. Schmidgall recalled the class by leading 369. Leaders: Jim Pfau 430; Tamara Harris 506; Louis Hughes, Jr. 348b; Ted Mercer 181; Cathy Lutz 66; Eamonn O’Neill and Noelle Copeland 236; Steven Levine 192; Jessica Beer 269; Judy Whiting 208; Laura Densmore 456; Pleasance Crawford 468; Paul Wyatt 328; Kate Kirwan 222; Judy Hauff 163t; Midge Olsen 454; Lisa Grayson 448t; Rachel Hall 273; Melanie Hauff 216; Stacey Berkheimer 215.


Kit Canright recalled the class by leading 74b. Leaders: Bryan Seale 324; Roberta Strauss 282 (dedicated to all who have faced life-threatening illness this year); Louis Hughes and Keith Willard 314; Daire O’Sullivan 318; Stephanie Argo and Ben Copenhaver 383; Natalie Jablonski 505; Leon Pulsinelle 227; Chris Bracken 344; Anne Drexler 87; Dan Housepian 385b; Shirley Figura 361; Myles Alexander and John Conroy 483; Becky Browne and Gary Gronau 137; Ann Gray 155; Cecelia Kramer 380; Leslie Williamson-White 209; Steve Copeland, Noelle Copeland, and Alexa Copeland 326; Pop Wagner, Anna Pfau, Matt Wells, Jeanette Nelson, Martha Henderson, Jim Parsons, and Christine Stevens 270; Val Eng 542.

Announcements were made. Treasurer Matt Wells announced that expenses had been met. Over the two days of the 24th session of the Minnesota State Sacred Harp Convention, 171 songs were led. Singers came from 19 states and from 2 provinces of Canada, as well as Ireland and the UK. Charlie Obert expressed thanks to the entire gathering.

Angie Payne and Charlie Obert led 34b as the closing song. Bonnie Ambrosi offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Co-Chairpersons—Angie Payne and Charlie Obert; Secretary—Janell Draper