2010.07.07 Kent Deatrick: Battle of the Bands

Written by David Green.

I appreciate all the members of the bands who participated in this year's Battle of the Bands contest. Your efforts provided us with one of our best shows ever.   

Our three judges selected for the first time a “Judge’s Choice Winner.” That honor went to “Variety Pak” from Delta, Ohio.

A key to the success of the event is the involvement of many behind-the-scenes volunteers, including: the REACT security team, helpers at the gates and voting table, the official counters, the electrical expansion team and the sound management team on the stage.

A local Morenci band, “TBA” (also know as, “Nunya” and “Kevlar”), won the popular vote for the third year in a row. They may change their name each year, but their classic rock and roll music is consistently high caliber with the audiences.

The popularity of our Battle of the Bands has increased each year since its inception in 2008, according to our voting attendance. The original attendance was 366 in 2008; 426 in 2009 and  538 this year.   

Prompted by our successful format, we have observed nearby towns follow our lead and initiate their own Battle of the Bands programs. Waldron started one in 2008. This year Hudson had representatives here to observe, take notes and meet the bands. Hudson is planning a Battle of the Bands July 31 at its festival.

It is my challenge each year to make the next year’s Battle even better than the previous. I observe, analyze and collect input from the audiences and the bands every year.   

So, for next year I am planning an expanded format, which will involve two brackets. I think it will be the fairest way to include all the bands in a competition that recognizes and welcomes the diversity of music and a wide ranging audience. 

Again, I seek to put together a fun, fair and entertaining program for everyone involved. As in all contests, the end result produces one winner, but by having the initiative to join in our Battle, that makes them all winners in my eyes. 

- Kent Deatrick

Festival Entertainment Director

  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • Shadow.salon
    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

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