Tony Rice Scholarship launched for young North Carolina pickers

A new music scholarship for young bluegrass artists has been launched in North Carolina in honor of the great guitarist and vocalist, Tony Rice, by Piedmont Folk Legacies and Rockingham County Education Foundation near Tony’s long time home in Reidsville, NC. These are the fine folks who run the PICK program (Piedmont Instrument Classes for Kids) in Eden, NC which offer instruction at no cost to area youngsters.

The scholarship is designed to assist high school age students further develop their passion for old time and bluegrass music. The Tony Rice Music Scholarship is seeking founding donations to build the endowment to at least $25,000, with an eye towards offering their first awards in 2022. 

As many of you may already understand, these sorts of scholarship awards are typically made from the interest or investment income from an endowment, allowing the administrators to retain, and hopefully grow, the cash reserves. The size of the awards they can offer in Tony’s name are dependent on the number of people willing to donate as the scholarship grows.

In their opening statement, the organizers ask everyone who has enjoyed Tony’s music over the years to consider a donation of any size to their efforts.

Tony Rice changed the course of American music, and it is our hope that we can help transform the lives of young musicians. Piedmont Folk Legacies and RCEF – with your help – will establish an endowed scholarship to aid aspiring Rockingham County high school students of music. Before now, few opportunities existed for students in our community to access traditional music programs and scholarships to help them develop their talents.

At this time, there is no way to donate online, but anyone willing to make a gift can do so one of two ways.

Text the word “Tony” (without quotes) to 24-365.

Send a check made payable to Rockingham County Education Foundation with “Tony Rice Scholarship” in the memo line to:

123 S. Scales St.
Reidsville, NC 27320

Pam Rice, Tony’s widow, have given her blessing to this scholarship.

We are sure that many of our reader will want to become founding donors for this wonderful project. For further details please contact Louise Price or Jenny Edwards.

UPDATE 10/29 – donations can now be made online using this link.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.