Come see us at the Goodrich Memorial Library Saturday - December 8th - 2 to 2:30 performance and a sing-a-long
Practice is held each Sunday after Worship (approximately from 11:30-1 pm). New members are welcome to join us.
Smaller ensembles could be formed and rehearse at a different time. Please contact Ruth Marquette or the church office if this interests you.
The United Church of Newport Bell Choirs started ringing in 2001 under the direction of Rev. Joy Toll-Chandler. We began with two octaves of Schulmerich Handbells purchased with very generous donations from our congregation and friends. There is a plaque on the wall by the side entrance to the church to honor our donors. Interest grew and, over time, enough donations were received so we could purchase another octave of Schulmerich Handbells, three octaves of Malmark Choirchimes, and special handbell tables.
We started with an inter-generational bell choir, grew to include all adult, mother-daughter, youth and teen bell choirs. Our ringers felt blessed to be able share the gift of music from this musical instrument with our congregation during services, a wedding, and special concerts in our church and community. The teen choirs traveled to Canada and Florida, visiting and performing at churches.
Our bell choir holds membership in the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers (AGEHR), Area I that sponsors special ringing events including Spring Rings, Adult Ringers Weekends, and Festival Conferences where many of our choir members enjoy camaraderie and learning experiences with other ringers from New England. Look for the Bottles for Bells deposit box outside of the Fellowship Hall. We collect returnable bottles to raise funds for music and scholarships to these handbells events.
Many of us have been ringing from the first day our church got the bells. Some ringers knew how to read music; others did not but learned, and all improved their ringing skills. The youth and teens from the early years have grown in their age and their skills. Many graduated from high school and moved on. A few continue to ring with us. Currently, we have one inter-generational bell choir that rehearses Wednesday evenings. The bell choir adds musical inspiration to services whenever possible. We always welcome anyone of any age wishing to try ringing. Your support is very important to us as we ring to the glory of God! If you would like to find out more, please contact our new director, Ruth Marquette at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Introducing our newest "baby" bells (7 octave): adonation for given by Joy Toll-Chandler and Paul Chandler in memory of their parents, Joan and Sid Toll and Jean and Ed Chandler. Along with a bell tree (not pictured).