Many of our JAM and YAM affiliates have been busy this summer carrying on the old time and bluegrass traditions. Even though most schools across the countryside are on break, there have been many successful day camps for jammers in North Carolina and South Carolina.

Every year, Preserving Our Southern Appalachian Music (POSAM) hosts the TAM YAM Camp in July in Pickens County, South Carolina. The POSAM organization works with Pickens County Schools to provide seven YAM (just like JAM) programs throughout their county each year. These YAM programs reach over 200 students per year! From July 15-19, YAM kids enjoyed jamming, performing, special music appearances, craft events and fun activities to beat the heat. Among this busy schedule, TAM YAM Camp coordinators made time for classes in guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, dulcimer, harmonica and singing. Over 50 youth and more than 20 adult volunteers were involved in this week-long day camp held at Pickens Recreation Center, creating a wonderful community atmosphere. To look at photo albums, visit their YAM Facebook Page or the YAM website

In nearby North Carolina, Chatham County JAM held a similar week-long day camp for its JAM students and community at the Silk Hope Heritage Farm Park during the last week in June. Chatham County JAMmers were happy to report that they survived the rainfall and carried on with music classes, performances, games and appearances by special guests. For the last day of camp, they had a big square dance, potluck dinner, cake walk and a 50/50 drawing open to the community. Chatham County JAM was helped tremendously by the Cumnock Union United Methodist Church, who provided snacks for the day campers. To find out more information about the success of their JAM Camp and about the Chatham County JAM program, please visit their Facebook page or the Chatham JAM website

Also in North Carolina, the Haywood County JAM program celebrated its first year of day camp the week of July 8-12. They had 29 students enrolled and featured classes in banjo, fiddle, guitar and dance. Other camp events included mountain songs and stories and special guest performances. Haywood County JAM looks forward to this school year’s program and being involved in their local community as much as possible! Please visit the Haywood County Arts Council’s Facebook page or their website to find out more!

Coming up soon is the 78th Annual Galax Fiddlers Convention held in the World’s Capital of Old Time Mountain Music itself – Galax, Virginia. This one of a kind event dedicates Monday to youth musicians around the world. Please join us Monday evening, August 5 to see JAM kids and other youth performers play in the old time and bluegrass contests. For more information about the contest rules and registration, please visit the Galax Fiddlers Convention website

Caldwell County JAM will be also featured at the upcoming Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention during Labor Day weekend in Lenoir, NC. Among the special activities of the fiddlers convention, Caldwell County JAM will have their own stage in the Instrument Making Tent for open mic youth performances. For more information, please visit their website at

In Regional JAM news, we have been busy working with multiple communities throughout Appalachia to spread our mission and develop more JAM programs, so please stay tuned for updates about upcoming and existing affiliates!