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Let them call you sweetheart ...

Barbershop quartet delivers love for a song

POSTED: February 10, 2010 4:00 a.m.

Sometimes, the love you have for someone is so deep, it’s hard to express it in words.

  

Which is where the North Georgia Barbershop Singers come in.

  

For the group’s annual fundraiser, they will take that emotion and set it to song, delivering it as a surprise to your loved one at home, at work or wherever you like.

  

“I’m sure it’s wonderful for whoever we sing to, and they appreciate it, but there’s a blessing for us, too, as we see smiles on faces and people tapping their toes,” said Dick Rockwell, club president.

  

The idea is simple: Pay $40, either by PayPal on the group’s Web site or by check, and schedule a time for a quintet to serenade your beau.

  

The singers come as a surprise, wearing their dapper uniforms of striped hats and blue sequined vests.

  

And yes, it’s a quintet — four singers and one to figure out the best way to surprise the unsuspecting recipient.

  

The deadline to reserve a singing valentine is Wednesday.

  

Rockwell said the group will travel to homes and businesses in Dawson County and most of the surrounding area — Forsyth, Hall and Lumpkin counties.

  

The members delivered about 70 valentines last year.

  

This year, along with the in-person singing, the members will also be making telephone calls to spouses of loved ones who are in the military.

  

These telephone valentines are free to members of the U.S. military who have a spouse or girlfriend (or, yes, boyfriend) who may be out of driving range for the group.

  

“We can’t visit all of them, but we’ll just do it by way of telephone,” Rockwell said.

  

Fellow member Rich Pilch said the singing valentines have brought them to an array of situations in the past, from office cubicles to homes in the woods to company board rooms.

  

One stop in particular, Pilch recalled, was an early morning valentine sung at United Community Bank in Dawsonville.

  

“The big wheel for the whole area was there, and we sang songs to him and gave him a rose, with all of the bank managers around the table,” he said. “He didn’t know what to do ... He ended up with a red face, and we were singing, ‘Let Me Call You Sweetheart.’”

  

Turns out the fellow bank presidents chipped in to surprise the banks’ executive.

  

Rockwell recalled another stop the group made last year, at Southern Catholic College in Dawsonville.

  

“A young lady who was engaged to a fellow in the military, and he wanted a singing valentine for his fiancee,” he said. “So we had half the college out on the steps listening to us.”

  

He recommends, though, that adult children who send a singing valentine to their elderly parents be at the house to open the door. Some people may question a group of singers in sequins at their door.

  

“We’ve done these in people’s homes, in offices, in restaurants, for Valentine’s parties, assisted living, nursing homes,” Rockwell said. “Sometimes they’re grandmothers or mothers, or they’re in their 20s.”

 

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