Homemade hamballs, heavenly harmonies fill Panther Creek Church of the Brethren Sunday

Donna Emmert of Perry, right, directs the Panther Creek Ringers Handbell Choir Sunday in their 30th-anniversary performance at Panther Creek Church of the Brethren in rural Adel.

Sunday afternoon’s concert by the Panther Creek Church of the Brethren Handbell Choir marked the group’s 30th year performing and attracted an audience of about 200 to the rural church south of Perry.

The event was entitled Hamballs, Handbells and Harmony–also known as H Cubed by the mathematically alert–and began with a fundraising dinner in the church’s community room. Dinner included homemade servings of¬†hamballs, potatoes, green beans, rolls and dessert.

Between dinner and the concert, a piano interlude was provided by Bob Davis, who played popular selections.

Video appears courtesy of PEGASUS TV12. Check PEGASUS listing for air times of full concert.

The concert began with five songs performed by the Panther Creek Ringers, the younger of the church’s two handbell choirs. The Panther Creek Ringers include Susan Mack Overla, Rachel Overla, Sarah Hawbaker, Roxanne Wicks, Sandra Marshall, Cristin Lantz and Jon Bennett, with direction by Donna Emmert.

The Panther Creek Vocal Choir then performed two songs, followed by vocal solos by Michelle Marshall, who sang “The Lonely Goatherd,” and Sandra Marshall, who sang “For What Earthly Reason?” The Panther Creek Vocal Choir is composed of Dee Marshall, Michelle Marshall, Sharon Andeberg, Peg Dawes, Sandra Marshall, Jana Heefner, Elizabeth Hawbaker, Dick Lindgren, Dave Kerkove, Alan Oneal, Peter Marshall, Dan Heefner, Roger Emmert and Mike Hawbaker. Denise Oneal is the director and Sue Swinger the accompanist.

Closing the performance were five numbers by the Panther Creek Handbell Choir, directed by Donna Emmert. Choir members include Jana Heefner, Barb Warner, Marilyn Stine, Doreen Davis, Roxanne Wicks, Karin Kliewer, Duane Griffin, Sue Swinger, Marilyn Bode and Kevin Marshall.

Proceeds from the fundraising hamballs go toward additional handbells. The choir now has a full five octaves of handbells plus three octaves of chimes and a variety of mallets, Emmert said. The handbells are manufactured in Pennsylvania by Schulmerich Carrilons Inc. and are the highest quality handbells made in the U.S., she said.



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