Winfield, KS—Officials at the Marquee Performing Arts Center have given notice that the Mossman’s Melody Guitar Raffle winner will be announced on Saturday, September 18th at the 49th Annual Walnut Valley Festival. Marquee is continuing to offer raffle tickets for a chance to win the guitar, $10 for one ticket and $20 for three in the days leading up to the drawing. These are available online at marqueepac.org/guitar-raffle-tickets, or sold at their booth under the grandstands at the festival from Thursday September 16th through Saturday the 18th when the drawing occurs on Stage 1 at 6:00pm. You do not need to be present to win.
Mr. Jeff Priest, who at one time worked for Mossman Guitar, donated the repaired 12-string Mossman guitar to raise money for the Marquee. The guitar has been assessed at an approximate value of $1500 by Jim Baggett, owner of Mass Street Music in Lawrence, KS. Priest asked that the money raised from the campaign go toward the Stuart Mossman Stage at the Marquee.
The Story of Mossman Guitar #73-560
Priest said that he purchased the guitar, advertised as being in good condition, on eBay about 20 years ago. It is a 12-string guitar and in its construction is similar to the Tennessee Flat Top, with mahogany back and sides and a spruce top. It was built prior to the 1975 fire that burned down a portion of Mossman’s shop, and this means it was made before Mossman settled on some of his standard guitar models, making it a relatively rare find. Jeff placed the winning bid, but the guitar arrived with a broken headstock and suffered from a structural failure where the neck joined the body, an affliction sometimes known to guitar players as the “agony of de feet.” It was worth next to nothing and was in unplayable condition, so Jeff stashed it in a closet.
After Priest retired in August 2019, he saw an article about the Marquee Performing Arts Center in Winfield, which was raising funds to refurbish the old Fox Theater downtown. Kendra Mossman had given them the naming rights to the Mossman Stage inside the center. Jeff had worked for Mossman in the mid-70s and now had the time and incentive to repair that old guitar.
Jeff Priest: “It’s a pretty cool story to think here’s a guitar that Stuart Mossman had a hand in making, coming full circle 47 years later to benefit the stage bearing his name.”
Marquee President Roger Moon: We very much appreciate Jeff’s willingness to donate this rare guitar, and in so doing help raise money for a stage bearing Stuart Mossman’s name. Members of the Marquee Board are excited to finally see the winner of this fundraising raffle announced after postponing one year to wait for the in-person 49th Annual Festival.