Panama City A Cappella Choir makes music and friendships

Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 8:57 PM CST
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - They say love makes you want to sing, but for one Panama City choir, they really love singing.

The Panama City A Cappella Choir meets every week at Trinity Lutheran Church in Panama City to practice singing together. The all-women choir sings everything from religious, holiday, pop hits to patriotic songs only using the human voice.

“We are all about empowering women through friendship, education and singing,” said Barbara Sampson, Director of the Panama City A Cappella Choir.

Barbara Sampson leads the choir, teaching and conducting the singers. She has been a part of the group for about 20 years of the choir’s more than 40 year existence.

“You don’t have to have a lot skill as far as singing goes,” said Barbara. “You don’t have to be classically trained or know how to read music. You just need to love to sing... and carry a tune.”

The choir is made up of local women of all ages and backgrounds. Nancy Everitt sings tenor, and joined the choir around the same time Barbara did.

“We just sing our little hearts out,” said Everitt. “It was my present to myself after retirement. And never regret it.”

Singing lead is Sarah Michielsen who joined two months ago after moving from Canada to Panama City.

“It was great like honestly the first time that I came I just took it all in it was overwhelming,” said Michielsen.

The choir does it all. They sing at events all across the area, as well as Christmas Carols and “Singing Valentines” which is a way for them to raise money to take trips and compete in choir competitions.

“You know they are so busy taking care of their kids, their husbands, their jobs, their house, whatever it might be. And this is just one thing they do for themselves,” said Barbara.

But it’s more than singing for this choir. They are making lifelong friendships.

“We come to the chorus for the music, but we stay for the friendships. They are lifelong friendships, they really are,” said Barbara.

A wonderful feeling when friends become family, and just like any family, they are looking to grow.

“This is a group of women that love each other and any woman who walks in the door will have 18 instant friends,” said Barbara.

If you would like to join the choir, you can find them @PCAHI on Facebook.

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