Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Sacred Harp Musical Heritage Association

Annual Meeting

Saturday, November 25, 2017

The annual meeting of the Sacred Harp Musical Heritage Association (SHMHA) was held at Jefferson State Community College on Saturday, November 25, 2017. Approximately 43 association members were present. David Ivey, President, called the meeting to order at 1:55 p.m. David welcomed the assembly and introduced the other Board members present: Judy Caudle—Minutes Secretary; Pam Nunn—Treasurer; Jeannette DePoy—Secretary; Sam Sommers. The board members not present were Henry Johnson—Vice President, Lauren Bock, and Terry Wootten. David thanked the board members for their service this year.

David Ivey presented a general overview of SHMHA and its purpose. He provided and reviewed an information sheet that summarized 2017 activities and the 2016 financial summary. He stated that SHMHA, as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization, files an IRS Form 990 report annually. A full financial summary for 2017 will be available in February, 2018. David reported that SHMHA received grant funding in 2017 from the Alabama State Council on the Arts for the fourteenth year. He expressed gratitude to the Sacred Harp Publishing Company for its continued financial support in the amount of $6,000 for Camp Fasola scholarships in 2017, and recognized the Publishing Company board members who were present. The Sacred Harp Publishing Company has provided grants to Camp Fasola annually since 2005. 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 2017, were $7,169.95. Judy stated that 276 singing events had submitted minutes as of November 20, 2017. This includes 231 one-day singings, 42 two-day conventions, two sessions of Camp Fasola, and one three-day convention. One hundred five singings have requested not to receive Minutes Books next year. For those singings that do request Minutes Books, the cost of the books will remain the same at $30 per singing day for 2018. There was discussion and input from members regarding possible future options for the printed Minutes Book. Judy praised the team who assists her with the Minutes Book publication: Angela Myers, Sam Sommers, 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 Ivey reported that SHMHA completed its fifteenth year of Camp Fasola operation in 2017. Twenty-eight camps have been held since 2003. SHMHA has offered both Youth and Adult Camps for the past ten years. Three sessions of Camp Fasola Europe have been held: 2012, 2014, and 2016. There will be another Camp Europe Session in 2018. Flyers are already available for Camp Europe. This year there was a good balance of participation in the two U.S. camps. Adult Camp had 100 participants and Youth Camp had 125. There was more encouragement to attend Adult Camp and more promotion on Facebook this year which seemed to help this balance. David discussed the plan for recruiting more participants for Camp Europe this year. Camp Europe is being announced at singings abroad regularly. The camp dates for 2018 were announced: Adult Camp—June 10-14; Youth Camp—July 2-6, and Camp Europe—September 17-21. Camp fees were increased in 2017 because of rising camp facility costs, but the fees are projected to remain level for 2018.

Jeannette DePoy, scholarship committee member, stated that a total of 35 scholarships totaling $8,770 were awarded in 2017: 28 for Youth Camp ($6, 570) and 7 for Adult Camp ($2, 200). All but three of those scholarships were to campers age 29 and under. Campers wrote brief narratives about their camp experiences.

Jeannette, as Camp Registrar, reported that 89% of the campers rated the classes as “Excellent”, 94% rated the teachers as “Excellent”, and 95% rated their overall camp experience as “Excellent”. David expressed his gratitude for all of camp’s teachers, counselors, and workers. 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. Jeannette stated that ideas from the evaluations have been extremely helpful in making improvements to camp. 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 2:40 p.m. The meeting was dismissed with prayer by Sam Sommers.

HMHA 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 produces the Directory and Minutes of Sacred Harp Singing, operates Camp Fasola, and 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