‘Walleyedol’ to see some changes this year

For the third year in a row, the “Emo Walleyedol” contest will be held in conjunction with the Emo Walleye Classic—a catch-and-release fishing tournament running May 24-26.
But the vocal competition has undergone a few changes to “make it that much better.”
Lincoln Dunn, the stage and technical co-ordinator for the EWC, noted they’ve changed how the winner is determined.
“Before, the winner on Saturday was chosen by the crowd,” he said, adding a panel of judges will select the winners this year.
“We decided to change it just to make it more streamlined, so we had judges making then final decision rather then the crowd,” he explained.
However, the audience still will be able to participate by voting on a “crowd favourite,” who will earn a $100 prize.
“The crowd is absolutely still involved,” stressed Dunn, noting they have never offered this award in the past.
In addition, the prize amounts for the three finalists have been adjusted in order to be more equitable.
The first-place winner will earn $400, while the second- and third-place finishers will take home $200 and $100, respectively.
“It’s also going to be a lot better organized this year,” Dunn pledged. “We’ve had some difficulties managing ‘Walleyedol’ in previous years mostly because of the workload on the rest of the committee members.”
This year, two volunteers have stepped up to exclusively manage the singing competition.
“It’s going to be more streamlined and a lot better show as a result,” Dunn promised. “We just had too many people with too many jobs last year and unfortunately, the ‘Walleyedol’ was one of the things that suffered.
“I think we still had a great show with good singers and good entertainment, but we’d like to make it just that much better,” he added.
And without a full slate of competitors last year, Dunn said he hopes these changes will bring out more singers this time around.
“The events like ‘Quest’ and the one [in International Falls], I know they’ve had a lot of success getting people to come,” he added. “There’s a lot of talent around here and hopefully we can convince a few more to come out.”
Like last year, “Emo Walleyedol” will take place in two parts on Friday, May 25 and Saturday, May 26.
All of the competitors will perform on the Friday, with the judges selecting the three finalists who then will compete for first, second, and third place on Saturday night.
The competition is open to performers age 16 and over who live in Rainy River District. The first 15 entrants will be accepted.
The entry fee is $20, which includes a special edition “Emo Walleyedol” T-shirt.
Competitors are asked to supply their own music, but if performers need assistance locating songs, the committee will provide some resources.
Song selections must be approved beforehand by the organizers.
Those interested in signing up can do so at the Corner Closet on Highway 11/71 in Emo.
For more information, contact either Colleen Vennechenko at 482-1811 or Dunn at 482-1548, or visit the EWC’s website at www.emowalleye.com