Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Features

February 22, 2014

Thirty years and still ringing

Local handbell choirs gearing up for annual festival

(Continued)

Ison and Harnish say they hope there are young people who get this excited about handbell choirs. The women say they’re trying to train the next generation of bell ringers.

The current choir members in Howard County are aging quickly, Harnish said.

“Some of us oldies won’t be able to play much longer,” Harnish said, with a laugh.

She has played in all 30 of the county’s handbell festivals, along with about 10 other current choir members in the area.

Seeing the excitement at the Joyful Ringers practice, it’s not hard to understand why some bell ringers stick around so long.

The newbies in the group say they love it. It’s a choir they can be in even if they don’t sing well.

Ison laughed and said it’s true.

“You sing with your bells,” she said.

Lindsey Ziliak, Tribune Life & Style editor, can be reached at 765-454-8585, at lindsey.ziliak@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter @LindseyZiliak.

WANT TO GO? WHAT: Area handbell festival featuring choirs from six local churches and the Circle City Ringers from Indianapolis WHEN: 5:30 p.m. March 1 WHERE: Bible Baptist Church on Dixon Road COST: A freewill offering will be accepted to help offset costs of the performance

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