CONTACT: Karen Beasley, Director of Marketing & Communications
Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
PHONE: 256.350.3500 / 800.648.5381

Calling All Old Time Music Lovers of All Ages!
Athens Welcomes Old Time Fiddlers Convention Oct. 4-7

Decatur, Ala. (August 22, 2023) – Thousands of old time music lovers and musicians will make their way to the North Alabama town of Athens, Ala. in October for the “Granddaddy of Midsouth Fiddlers Conventions.” The Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention returns to the campus of Athens State University October 4-7, 2023. Along with the crowning of a new Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddle champion, the three-day event offers concerts, free workshops, food vendors and arts and crafts on a theme of authentic workmanship while celebrating traditional old time music.

The Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention attracts approximately 15,000 folk music fans and more than 200 musicians who will be vying for over $47,000 in prize money in 19 different categories of competition, including several fiddle and guitar categories, mandolin, bluegrass, banjo, old time singing and Appalachian buck dancing. Musical competitions are held on the main stage in front of Founders Hall and the Delmore Brothers Stage in McCandless Hall and get underway Friday, Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. and resume Saturday, Oct. 7 at 9:30 a.m. Finals are held on the Founders Hall stage after all preliminary rounds of competitions have concluded. The Convention culminates on Saturday evening when the new Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddle champion is announced.

In addition to the competitions, the Fiddlers Convention features concerts, some with free admission. All concerts will take place on the main stage at Founders Hall. The concert line-up includes:
·         Wednesday, October 4 at 7 p.m. – Appalachian Roadshow (special gospel concert) *Free admission.
·         Thursday, October 5 at 6:30 p.m. – Clearview Bluegrass *Free admission. 
·         Thursday,  October 5 at 7 p.m. - Appalachian Roadshow (bluegrass concert) *Free admission.
·         Friday, October 6 at 6 p.m. – The Grascals
·         Saturday, October 7 at 7:30 p.m. – The Dan Tyminski Band

Approximately 150 old-fashioned juried arts and crafts booths offering an assortment of items from traditional artwork to coal-fired metal works with an emphasis on handmade creations will be open for business during festival hours and a variety of food vendors will be on hand to provide anything from a quick snack to a full meal. Be sure to visit the Jerry McGlocklin Music Store located in the Sandridge Hall Ballroom for vendors selling instruments and accessories, along with Luthier demonstrations. A variety of free workshops for emerging musicians of all ages and abilities will be offered on Saturday, Oct. 7 from 1 to 4 p.m. outside the Convention gates in Kares Library. Convention guests also have the opportunity to enter the annual Bank Independent cash giveaway. This year, the cash prizes will be $500 on Thursday, $1,000 on Friday and $1,000 on Saturday.

Cost of admission is $20 per adult for Friday, $20 per adult for Saturday, or $25 per adult for a weekend pass. Children under 12 will be admitted free with a paid adult. Tickets can be purchased at the gate or online at or Pets and coolers are not allowed. Festivalgoers are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. Proceeds from the event fund student scholarships and other university projects throughout the year. For more information, visit

About Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association (AMLA)
AMLA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion and development of the $4.3 billion North Alabama travel industry within the 16 northernmost counties of the state. It is supported by 500-plus members consisting of chambers of commerce, Convention & Visitors Bureaus, attractions, campgrounds, festivals, communities, golf courses, restaurants, accommodations and vendors. Counties included within the AMLA region are Blount, Cherokee, Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Morgan and Winston. Additional information on North Alabama destinations, accommodations and special events is available by calling 800.648.5381, by visiting and by following us on social media @VisitNorthAL.