Several hundred of the nation's best vocalists willserenade Sandusky with their sweetest tunes next weekend as part of The American Singers Club's second annual Northern Ohio competition.
The singers will flock from as far as California,Virginia, Florida and all over the Midwest to showcase their melodic warbles, superior showmanship and trim tailfeathers. To gain extra style points, some competitors might even get their beaks buffed.
The competitors, by the way, are canaries.
"It's a pretty neat little hobby," said Roger Stroman, president of the ASC's local chapter. "It should be a fun event."
Stroman would know.
Over the past eight years, the Sandusky native and lifetime bird-lover has become a legend on the ASC circuit. The rainbow of ribbons, medals and rosettes hanging in his basement decorates his walls like a peacock's prismatic feathers.
He recently earned the title of "master breeder" from the ASC for winning his 10th Best in Show, and since 2004, he has finished no worse than sixth in the National Cage Bird Show -- "the Westminster for songbirds," as he calls it.
"Roger's pretty much the best," said Harrison Smith, another local breeder and competitor. "Most people just can't compete with him."