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Guild raises startup funds


Staff Report
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A wide range of music was served up with the pizza at Shenandoah Pizza on Tuesday night as musicians and music lovers of all types gathered to support the startup of a new music organization in Staunton.

Professional and amateur musicians, business owners and fans mingled and networked as the Staunton Music Guild and Shenandoah Pizza owners John and Cheryl Huggins hosted the Guild’s first membership event. Attendees had the chance to sign up as a founding member of the Guild for $10 and catch a myriad of talented local musicians.

Everything from a cappella, blues, gospel, bluegrass, solo oboe and trombone, ukulele, original music, sing-a-longs and old standards was performed throughout the evening. The musicians jammed long past the scheduled end time.

Guild organizers signed up 54 Founding Members and took donations. Shenandoah Pizza donated 20 percent of the night’s proceeds to the Guild. More than $900 was raised from all sources. The money will go towards the costs of beginning business operations, establishing a website and implementing the initial educational and outreach programs of the Guild.

The fundraiser marked the end of a three month series of exploratory meetings and was the official announcement of the Guild’s mission to “support the growth and performance of music in the area and establish Staunton as an outstanding and unique musical destination.” The Staunton Music Guild has already become active in educational and local cultural events by sponsoring its first free workshop, “Marketing for Musicians” on Nov. 18 and providing entertainment for Staunton Downtown Development Association’s Friday Nights series in September and October, and performing at the launch of Staunton’s new Red Brick Arts and Culture District in October.

A public website and a series of educational, networking and community outreach events are in the works for 2010. For more information, visit the Staunton Music Guild on facebook, www.facebook.com/StauntonMusicGuild, join the Guild’s e-mail group at www.groups.google.com/group/staunton-music-guild or call Karen Lawrence at 540.466.0059 to learn more about becoming a member.



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