GREENVILLE — Attendees at the third annual Rock of Ages Talent Show were treated to several musical performances, a stand-up comedy routine, an Elvis impersonator, and more Saturday night. The event was held at VFW Post 7262 in Greenville.
The show was hosted by Rob Jones, a Greenville native who thanked the event’s sponsors and asked for donations on behalf of the Veterans Memorial Park and Digital Library, the local nonprofit which organized the show. The group’s mission, according to their Facebook page, is to build a “first of its kind, state-of-the-art digital memorial” made up largely of recorded interviews with veterans.
Jones also introduced Matthew Kindley, a student in Greenville High School’s Interactive Media career tech program, saying that Kindley had been hard at work interviewing veterans and preserving their stories electronically.
Jones, nonetheless, pretended to balk at having to “share the spotlight” with Kindley as his co-host for the night, prompting a humorous exchange.
“Can’t I at least help out a little bit?” Kindley asked, getting laughs from the audience.
“Of course. You’ve already been a great help,” Jones said.
Veterans present for the event, according to Jones, included Darke County Disabled American Veterans Commander Robert A Foster; former Greenville Police Chief Dennis Butts; and all of the show’s judges, who received a standing ovation from the audience.
Arcanum native Don Dietrich, also a veteran, was the first act of the night and the first of a number of musical performers, singing the Merle Haggard song “Rock of Ages” with a recording of the legendary musician as accompaniment.
Dietrich was followed by Daphne Kies, winner of the contest during its first two years, who played guitar and sang “All I Want” by Kodaline and “Believer” by Imagine Dragons; Madison Bradburn, who sang “How Far I’ll Go” from the recent film “Moana”; and Taylor Bowers, who performed “Don’t Underestimate the Things that I Will Do” by Adele.
Other acts included “Goonies Jeopardy,” a parody of the popular game show featuring characters from the film “The Goonies;” an Elvis Presley impersonator; and Peter Kesauer, a former postal worker who did a short stand-up comedy routine.
“Please remain calm, ma’am,” Kesauer said he once told a customer who became nervous after witnessing a display of Kesauer’s temper. “Here at the Post Office, we only kill each other.”
Taylor Bowers won first place at this year’s show, taking home a $1,000 prize.
Along the way, H&R Block District Manager Kim Rosa presented Dietrich, and the Digital Library project, with a check for $1,960.
The show was sponsored by a number of local businesses and other organizations, including H&R Block, Dough Shields and Associates, Disabled American Veterans Chapter 57, VFW Post 7262, and Second National Bank, with the nonprofit group Big Brothers Big Sisters of Shelby and Darke County providing concessions.
The writer may be reached at 937-569-4315. To join the conversation and get updates on Facebook, search Advocate360. For more features online, go to dailyadvocate.com