10/03/12 — Seniors show off talents at fair Tuesday

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Seniors show off talents at fair Tuesday

By Becky Barclay
Published in News on October 3, 2012 1:46 PM

From Anne Murray to gospel to show tunes, this year's Salute to Senior Citizens contest at the county fair was all about music.

The four contestants all sang songs for their talent.

Sherry Aycock took home first place with her song "You Needed Me" by Anne Murray.

"She's got a good low voice, and I'm an alto," Mrs. Aycock said of her song choice.

"I wanted to ask the people attending to reflect on what kind of appreciation they have for others. So I asked that they would dedicate it to someone special."

The 60-year-old represented Eastern Wayne ECA Club. She said when asked to participate in the contest, "I couldn't think of a reason why I couldn't."

Singing on a stage is not a new concept for Mrs. Aycock. She sang in a college choir at Concordia College in Minnesota. The choir toured internationally, mainly in Scandinavia, and throughout the United States.

"The director was a composer, very well renown," she said. "He demanded such perfection. We had to take voice lessons while we were in college to be in this choir."

Mrs. Aycock also sang with Up With People in 1977-78.

"I was just a little farm girl," she said. "I have to give credit to my mom and music teachers, even in the elementary classroom, for encouraging me. That helped me realize what a message can do for people. It isn't about the singer; it's really about if you can reach people."

Of senior citizens, Mrs. Aycock said, "Without senior citizens, there's a bunch of stuff that wouldn't be happening in our churches, in our communities."

Second place in the competition went to Julian Aycock, the only male contestant, who sang "He Gave His Life For Me."

Coming in third was Janet Jones, who sang "God On the Mountain."

Forth place went to Gretchen Jordan, a retired teacher with the Wayne County public schools. She sang a show tune, "Belly Up To The Bar Boys" from "The Unsinkable Molly Brown."

"I wanted to do something fun," the 62-year-old said. "I've always loved that movie. I just think it was kind of a fun thing to do."

Her costume was a maroon skirt hiked up two places in the front and pinned with flowers to show off her lily white bloomers and white stockings -- and her brown working boots.

She said she adapted the outfit from the movie using a skirt she had made for her daughter years ago. A friend made the bloomers, and the boots were borrowed.

"I was a little nervous, of course," Ms. Jordan said. "I just tried to have fun. That's the main thing.

She represented Fine Points ECA Club.

During the senior citizens contest, entertainment was provided by Blended Hands Signing Choir from Blended Fellowship Worship in Pikeville.

The 10-member group, led by Doug Seymour, were all hard of hearing and some even deaf. They signed to "Look What God Is Doing," "God's Building a Church" and "The Old Rugged Cross."

Also providing entertainment were the Goldsboro Silver Stompers, led by Stasia Fields. The senior group line danced to "I'm From the Country" and "Boot Scootin Boogie."

Special awards were presented to seniors attending the event. Winners were Eloise Briley, youngest grandmother at 60; Hattie Leathers, oldest senior present at 98; Edith Sasser, most recent grandmother; Mary Lewis, most children with eight; Demetrus and Eloudia Raynor, most grandchildren with 13; Sara Head, most great-grandchildren with 10; and Cecil and Helen Columbus, oldest married couple, 61 years.

The Salute to Senior Citizens Contest was sponsored by the Wayne County Extension and Community Association and the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service.