Arkansas Federation of Music Clubs
Ninety-third Annual Convention

April 21-22, 2017

Summit Baptist Church
901 Ridgway Rd.
Pine Bluff, AR 71603

Hosted by
Southeast District
Frank Ferguson, District President

Registration Fee: $20
Registration Deadline: Friday, April 7
Registration Form: Download

For more information about Junior Day, and to download schedule and forms, visit the Junior Day page.


Convention Meetings
Summit Baptist Church (Google Maps)
901 Ridgway Rd.
Pine Bluff, AR 71603

Friday Night Dinner
Chef Lee (Google Maps)
502 Mallard Loop
Pine Bluff, AR 71603
Phone: (870) 850-0266

Nearby Hotels

Hampton Inn & Suites (Hotel Website)
511 Mallard Loop (Google Maps)
Pine Bluff, AR 71603
Phone: (870) 850-7488

Holiday Inn Express & Suites (Hotel Website)
3620 S. Camden Rd. (Google Maps)
Pine Bluff, AR 71603
Phone: (870) 879-3800

Note: There is no designated Convention Hotel and no AFMC discount this year.

Convention Schedule

Friday, April 21
2:00 p.m. Registration
2:00 p.m. Finance Committee Meeting
3:30 p.m. AFMC Board & Executive Committee Meeting

5:00 p.m. Convention Dinner at Chef Lee (Not required. Cost not included in registration.)

7:00 p.m. Concert
Pine Bluff Community Band
Reception afterwards provided by Pine Bluff Musical Coterie

Saturday, April 22
8:00 a.m. Registration
8:30 a.m. District Meetings
9:00 a.m. General Session
9:00 a.m. IPFAC Scholarship Auditions
10:30 a.m. Junior Day Honors Recital
12:00 p.m. Luncheon
2:00 p.m. Dismissal

From the President

Dear AFMC Friends and Colleagues:

It is hard to believe the AFMC Convention is just around the corner! The event will take place Friday and Saturday—April 21-22, 2017—at Summit Baptist Church in Pine Bluff. Here are just a few of the highlights planned:

  • Ruth Ann McChesney, Chair of the NFMC Membership Division, will be our special National Guest. She will be speaking on a very timely topic—how to deal with the challenges of retaining and attracting new members. Ruth Ann is a delightful person I met last summer at the NFMC meeting in Tulsa. Her energy, enthusiasm and creativity will be an inspiration to us all.
  • Junior Day: Janine Tiner, AFMC Junior Counselor, has put together a fine program featuring our elementary, junior, and senior high Festival students.
  • A concert prepared especially for AFMC by the Pine Bluff Community Band, followed by a reception hosted by the Pine Bluff Musical Coterie.
  • Two 2017 AFMC William Yick Collegiate Award winners: Lois Larsen, soprano (Harding University); and Lynlie Simpson, flute (Arkansas State University). Lois and Lynlie will perform for us at Saturday’s luncheon.

I look forward to seeing you next month in Pine Bluff! If you’re planning to stay in Pine Bluff Friday night, do make your hotel reservation soon. We understand that another organization is set to have a conference in Pine Bluff this same weekend.

Taking time to “enjoy the music” with you,

Dr. Chris Thompson, President
Arkansas Federation of Music Clubs

National Guest

Ruth Ann McChesney
NFMC Membership and Education Division Chairman

Ruth Ann McChesney is from Mars… Pennsylvania, that is! She is a native of the Keystone State, was raised in small paper mill town, took Pre-Nursing two years at Grove City College and received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Pittsburgh in 1961.

Her musical interests began at the age of nine with two years of piano lessons from her church-organist mother and continued six more years with a local teacher who was a role model when Ruth Ann decided to open her own piano studio. She was introduced to the Federation by a friend who encouraged (Junior) Festival participation for her students and that was just the beginning of her involvement at the local, state, regional and national levels. She was PFMC president from 2008-12 and was elected to the NFMC Executive Board in 2013 as Membership and Education Division chair.

Music continues to consume much of her busy life, even though she is no longer teaching. She is organist, a choir member and plays her 4th grade flute at her church, has sung alto in the 120-voice Pittsburgh Concert Chorale for 23 years, serving on its board for fifteen of those years. She spends the summers at her lake house near Chautauqua Institution in western New York, singing Sunday mornings and evenings with the Chautauqua Choir in the 5,000-seat open-air amphitheater on the grounds! The NE Region of NFMC has held its “Federation Days” annually at Chautauqua since 1945. This weekend is highlighted with a recital by students of the Schools of Fine and Performing Arts who receive NFMC scholarship monies and concludes with a concert by a current NFMC Young Artist winner. (The 73rd Federation Days are July 8-9, 2017; why not come and join us!)

Ruth Ann was widowed in 1995 but remarried in 2000 and she and her husband, Charles, have five sons, four daughters-in-law and six “fantastic” grandchildren, ages 14-17! She and Charlie are on the board of Music Mission Kiev, a ministry in Ukraine, and together they enjoy all the culture that the city of Pittsburgh has to offer, as well as the concerts at Chautauqua Institution all summer. See

Ruth Ann states: “It is an honor and great privilege to make my first ever visit to Arkansas by sharing in your 2017

AFMC William Yick Award Winners

AFMC is pleased to announce the 2017 winners of the AFMC William Yick Collegiate Award.

Lynlie Simpson

Lynlie Simpson

Lynlie Simpson is a junior at Arkansas State University. She has played the flute for nine years, and studied privately with Bonnie Kimbrough and Joe Bonner during that time. Her passion for flute grew rapidly as she entered high school and began to audition for All Region and All State. Upon high school graduation, Lynlie chose to major in Music Education because she wants to make a difference in the lives of her students. She is a section leader in the ASU Wind Ensemble.

Lois Larsen

Coloratura soprano Lois Larsen, a native of Tampa, Florida, is studying music at Harding University with an emphasis in vocal performance. She will complete her Bachelor’s degree in May, and plans to attend graduate school in the fall. Lois has been a finalist in the Kristin Lewis Foundation Vocal Scholarship Competition, the Trinity Presents Collegiate Performance Showcase, and the Beethoven Club’s Las and Sara Savell Vocal Competition. She also regularly competes at the National Association of Teachers of Singing Conference, having placed both first and second in the classical divisions of her age group multiple times. Lois studies voice with Dr. Kelly Neill and is an active participant in Harding’s opera scenes program, as well as a member of the Harding University Chamber Singers. She presented her senior recital in January, and will perform the role of Serpina in La Serva Padrona this April.

Ms. Simpson and Ms. Larsen will perform at the AFMC Convention in Pine Bluff on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

AFMC Convention Memorial Service

During the Luncheon on Saturday, April 22, AFMC Chaplain Willete Atkins will lead a memorial service honoring the AFMC members who have died in the past year.

Senior Club Presidents: Please send a list of those in your club who have passed away in the last year to:
Willete Atkins, AFMC Chaplain
#9 Ruthwell Dr.
Bella Vista, AR 72715
Names must be received by Monday, April 17.

For information about upcoming events, visit the Calendar.
Visit the Federation Days page to learn about this summer’s event.