Volunteer Spotlight: Music Soothes the Soul
The long-running volunteer entertainment program at Family House has restarted in 2020 after a six-month gap during the COVID-19 outbreak. Performances are held on the Front Porch at 7 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays. Volunteer musicians are masked and perform at a distance from guests, ensuring a safe but uplifting evening together.
“Bringing good cheer to guests in the form of music, magic, and even tap dancing has been a big part of Family House since it opened. I’m glad to get the program going again,” says volunteer Entertainment Coordinator George Spencer who began the program in 2009.
Since late August, guests have been serenaded by eight times by groups that include the ukulele quartet Moukelele, the J.D. Goodtime Band, soloists guitarist Rollie Olin, and accordion player Shawn Stonesifer. Scheduled October shows are the Triangle Tuba Quartet (Oct. 13) and classical groups Tres Corni (Oct. 20) and the Mimosa Trio (Oct. 26).
Before the virus hit North Carolina, guests enjoyed anywhere from 70 to 90 nights of entertainment annually at Family House. “Most performers are amateurs and play bluegrass, ol’ time, or pop music. Gospel is a huge hit. UNC glee clubs like the Loreleis and the Clef Notes always draw crowds. And magicians bring down the house,” says George. In his opinion, our most unusual entertainer so far was a white-haired Andy Griffith impersonator while the best-known was Katharine Whalen, the former lead singer of the hugely popular retro-swing band The Squirrel Nut Zippers.
If you know a musician or musical group who can volunteer to share their joy of music for guests at Family House, please contact Volunteer Services Manager Georgie Clemens at email@example.com or Entertainment Coordinator George Spencer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured above right: Morgan Creek Band
Pictured left: Musicians Randy & Marie