Andrew
Welch at
Town Crier
  Competitions

  Town Crier for Caledon, Ontario, Canada
Photo credit: DD Photography


Competitions for Criers?  Oh yes!

In addition to their Civic, Charitable, Community, and Corporate duties, town criers have another C-word on their busy schedules: representing their community in Competitions!

Town Crier Competitions tend to fall into three general categories: Local invitationals, Guild-sponsored Provincials, and International invitationals.  The rules vary slightly, but for the most part, judges score criers based on four things:

bullet  Deportment (Entrance and Exit)
bullet  Projection/Clarity
bullet  Cry Content
bullet  Penalties (Word errors, vocal cracks, etc.)

These are not just a chance to bring some renown to your home town - they are also a very important time for town criers from all over the province/world to socialize together and learn a great deal from their colleagues.  Because of these gatherings, town criers continually hold themselves to a higher standard and and raise the bar for each other.  Of course, competitions do also confer some bragging rights, and the Towns of Caledon and Erin have much to be proud of.  Here are some of Andrew's hard-won competition standings:


Ontario Guild of Town Criers - Provincial Championships  -  FIRST PLACE OVERALL
21-22 May, 2016 - Perth, Ontario

I had to miss the 2015 Provincials due to a Red Cross deployment to assist in the Saskatchewan wildfire response.  I felt quite out of shape for this one, so when first place was announced, you could have knocked me over with a feathered hat...

A rare addition to this competition was a separate measurement of vocal volume.  I ranked third with a peak decibel measurement of 98.9.  Read article


Ontario Guild of Town Criers - Provincial Championships  -  FIFTH PLACE OVERALL
9-10 August, 2014 - Port Perry, Ontario

Despite the best care, I suffered a throat injury in the middle of this three-cry competition.  I didn't expect to come anywhere near as well as I did when all the scores were in.  Fortunately, the voice recovered, but it took days...


Marshville Heritage Festival Town Crier Competition  -  FIRST PLACE OVERALL
1 September, 2013 - Wainfleet, Ontario

My first overall competition win.  This prestigious gathering is unique, in that criers must create and deliver two additional proclamations on-the-spot for craft vendors - a very challenging twist!


Ingersoll Harvest Festival Annual Town Crier Competition  -  THIRD PLACE OVERALL
24 August, 2013 - Ingersoll, Ontario

This annual gathering is the oldest continuously running Town Crier's competition in North America.


World Invitational Town Crier Championships  -  AWARDED BEST AMBASSADOR
1-5 August, 2013 - Kingston, Ontario

Someone posted a video of me doing my favourite cry from this competition.  Enjoy!


Muskoka Escapades Town Crier Competition  -  SECOND PLACE OVERALL
14 July, 2013 - Bracebridge, Ontario


Ontario Guild of Town Criers - Provincial Championships  -  FIFTH PLACE OVERALL
22-23 June, 2013 - Thorold, Ontario

Town Crier - Thorold Provincials Competition

Ingersoll Harvest Festival Annual Town Crier Competition  -  THIRD PLACE OVERALL
25 August, 2012 - Ingersoll, Ontario

This annual gathering is the oldest continuously running Town Crier's competition in North America.


Queen's Diamond Jubilee Town Crier Competition  -  SECOND PLACE OVERALL
14 July, 2012 - Gravenhurst, Ontario

Town criers from all over Ontario, along with special guests from the United States and New Zealand, competed in a competition to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, as well as the 125th Anniversary of the Town Of Gravenhurst and the RMS Segwun.  Read Andrew's favourite cry from this competition (in its original form - the official entry had to be edited to not exceed 125 words).  - with inspiration thanks to Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.


Celebrate Barrie Festival Town Crier Competition  -  SECOND PLACE OVERALL
2 June, 2012 - Barrie, Ontario

This was Andrew's first Ontario Guild of Town Criers competition as a full member of the guild, competing against more than a dozen criers from across the province.


Ontario Guild of Town Criers - Provincial Championships  -  Not yet eligible to compete
13 August, 2011 - Brantford, Ontario

As this was before Andrew's first official appointment (by the Town of Caledon), he was not yet a member of the Guild and therefore ineligible to compete.  However, he was given the honour of delivering benchmark cries for the competition - the performances which set the standard for the judges to work from in evaluating the other criers.

Town Crier - Brantford Provincials Competition

Muskoka Escapades Town Crier Competition  -  FOURTH PLACE OVERALL
10 July, 2011 - Bracebridge, Ontario

This competition represented the first time that Andrew got to meet fellow Ontario criers, and the first time he had ever appeared in competition (with fewer than 10 apppearances under his belt!)  When the points were tallied, he was only one point behind the third place crier (out of 200 points).

Town Crier - Muskoka Pioneer Power Show competition     Town Crier - Santa's Village competition


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