SHAWNEE, OH. – The 18th Annual Little Cities of Black Diamonds Day will be held from Noon to 5PM on Sunday, October 21 in downtown Shawnee. The theme for this year’s event is Music of the Little Cities: Coal Dust, Culture & Cause for Congregation. A thematic exhibit exploring the topic, special programs and music are on tap. Each year this event celebrates the rich history, culture and natural environment of the Hocking Valley Coal Fields located at the corners of southeastern Ohio’s Athens, Hocking, Morgan and Perry Counties.
Local history research reveals that music was a primary form of entertainment in the mining communities of the Hocking Valley Coal Boom Era (1870-1930). Opera houses, union meetings, fraternal lodge balls, parades, churches, dances, quickly built platforms and taverns were all venues for music. Many of the miners were musicians themselves, with each community sporting brass bands, string bands and various singing groups. Sunday’s agenda will give visitors a taste of the music from the era, as well as connect them to a young contemporary musician who is telling the story of the region through folk ballads and “roots style” rock numbers.
Highlights of the day’s agenda will be the presence of WOUB Public Radio personalities Ivan and Deanna Tribe of the Hornpipe and Fugue show who will be sharing music of the era as well their observations about its influence on coal field culture beginning an Noon in the Harigle Building at 126 West Main Street. This building will also be the location of the thematic exhibit on music. The afternoon’s ending attraction will feature singer-songwriter Adam Remnant who is the lead singer for the Athens-based band Southeast Engine who will give a free 30-minute performance from the event stage in the Tecumseh Commons at 116 West Main Street, before heading upstairs for a private show at 4PM on the stage of the Indian Theater in the Tecumseh Theater building. Remnant and his band have gained national attention for their Canary CD (Misra Records, 2011) which chronicles the life of a Hocking Valley family during the Great Depression. His investment in this story has continued with four additional songs in the recently released Canaanville EP (Misra Records, 2012). There is plenty of music in between on the stage at the Tecumseh Commons, including Ohio University professors, Richard Greenlee and Jack Wright, whose love for the region’s music extends throughout their careers, as well as performance of Union songs and harp music by Charlie and Celia Lewis. Violin music from Jordan Shear as well as a brass quintet and piano music round out the day’s experience. There is no admission charge to the Harigle or Tecumseh Commons during the event.
Art vendors and exhibitors are also planned, as well as a traditional soup, sandwich and homemade pie luncheon provided by members of the Tecumseh Theater restoration group, established in 1977.
For more information visit www.littlecitiesofblackdiamonds.org. To purchase tickets for the special Adam Remnant concert in the Indian Theater contact the Little Cities of Black Diamonds Council by phone at 740-394-3011 or via e-mail email@example.com. Shawnee is located in the Wayne National Forest at the intersection of State Routes 93 & 155 in southern Perry County.
# # #
For more information about this news release contact John Winnenberg at 740-707-1775
Little Cities of Black Diamonds Council –P.O. Box 128 Shawnee, Ohio 43782 1-866-394-3011