Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Sacred Harp Musical Heritage Association

Annual Meeting

Saturday, November 26, 2016

The annual meeting of the Sacred Harp Musical Heritage Association (SHMHA) was held at Jefferson State Community College on Saturday, November 26, 2016. Approximately 32 association members were present. David Ivey, President, called the meeting to order at 2:00 p.m. David welcomed the assembly and introduced the other Board members present: Judy Caudle—Minutes Secretary; Henry Johnson—Vice President; Pam Nunn—Treasurer; Jeannette DePoy—Secretary. The Board members not present were Lauren Bock, Samuel Sommers, and Terry Wootten. David thanked them for their service this year.

David presented a general overview of SHMHA and its purpose. He provided and reviewed an information sheet that summarized 2016 activities and the 2015 financial summary. He stated that SHMHA, as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, files an IRS Form 990 report annually. David reported that SHMHA received grant funding for Camp Fasola in 2016 from the Alabama State Council on the Arts for the thirteenth year. He expressed gratitude to the Sacred Harp Publishing Company for its continued financial support in the amount of $6,500 for Camp Fasola in 2016, and recognized the Publishing Company board members who were present. David stated that SHMHA now supports financial management for the National Convention, United Convention, State Line singing, Alabama State Convention, and Young People’s Convention.

Judy Caudle provided a report for the “Directory and Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings” (Minutes Book) project. The estimated expenses for the project, including printing and shipping in 2016, were $8,459.00. Judy stated that 284 singing events had submitted minutes as of November 23, 2016. This includes 238 one-day singings, 41 two-day conventions, three sessions of Camp Fasola, one three-day convention, and one Alaskan Cruise. There have been 103 singings requesting not to receive Minutes Books next year. The cost of the books will remain the same at $30 per singing day for 2017. There was discussion and input from the members regarding possible future options for the printed Minutes Book. David reminded those present that anyone who is housebound can receive a free copy of the Minutes Book by mail by sending the request to Judy Caudle. Judy praised her team who assists her with the Minutes Book publication: Joan Aldridge, Angela Myers, Chris Thorman, and Carolyn Deacy. David thanked Judy and the entire Minutes Book team for the contribution of many hours of work to produce a high quality publication that is greatly valued by the Sacred Harp community.

David reported that SHMHA completed its fourteenth year of Camp Fasola operation in 2016. Twenty-six camps have been held since 2003. SHMHA has offered both Youth and Adult Camps for the past nine years. Three sessions of Camp Fasola Europe have been held: 2012, 2014, and 2016. Adult Camp 2016 enrollment was 61, a slight decrease from 2015. Youth Camp 2016 enrollment was the largest ever at 154 and is approximately the largest capacity that can be accommodated at Camp Lee. David mentioned that more adults will be encouraged to attend Adult Camp to better balance attendance of the two camps. A member asked if consideration had been given not to allow adults to attend Youth Camp to be sure there is enough space for all youth who wish to attend. Jeannette stated that this year’s age 19-39 focus group indicated that a strength of Youth Camp is that there are participants of all ages. Camp Europe enrollment was 46 with 13 of those from North America. David discussed the plan for more recruiting by the European singers for participants for future sessions of Camp Europe. A member asked if a country other than Poland had been considered for Camp Europe. This has been explored, but the costs are not as favorable as the Poland venue. Several members provided positive comments on the Camp Fasola project. The camp dates for 2017 were announced: Adult Camp—June 11-15, and Youth Camp—July 3-7.

Jeannette DePoy, Scholarship Committee member, stated that a total of 45 scholarships totaling $9,650 were awarded in 2016 (up from 36 scholarships in 2015): 40 for Youth Camp ($8,400), one for Adult Camp ($250), and four for Camp Europe ($1,000). Again this year, scholarship campers wrote brief narratives about their camp experiences. Jeannette shared a few of these testimonials with the members. Jeannette, as Camp Registrar, reported that 89% of the campers rated camp classes as “Excellent”, 91% rated the teachers as “Excellent”, and 94% rated their overall camp experience as “Excellent”. Members were encouraged to contribute to the Camp Fasola scholarship fund. It was also explained how members can encourage prospective campers to apply for scholarship support.

The members were given additional opportunity to provide input on SHMHA’s programs and operations.

There being no further business brought before the members, David Ivey adjourned the meeting at 2:45 p.m. The meeting was dismissed with prayer by Henry Johnson.

SHMHA is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, incorporated in Alabama, whose purpose is the perpetuation and preservation of Sacred Harp singing and its traditions. SHMHA publishes the Directory and Minutes of Sacred Harp Singing, operates Camp Fasola, sponsors the fasola.org website, and supports Sacred Harp conventions and singings and other activities related to Sacred Harp music.

President—David Ivey; Vice President—Henry Johnson; Secretary—Jeannette DePoy