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Ukuleles star at 17th annual Inland festival

They came to strum their ukuleles. And to listen and sing along.
More than 200 people attended the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival, staged Tuesday, May 21, at a Grand Terrace church.
Joyce Close, known as the “Ukulady,” plays Tuesday, May 21, with Pink Ukuladies and Gents of Banning at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Judy Jewell, of the Fallbrook Strummers Ukulele Group, sings “Delilah” at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Sound The gallery will resume in seconds Audience members enjoy the music Tuesday, May 21, at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Flowers were everywhere at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival on Tuesday, May 21. Many wore them in their hair, on their shirt or attached them to their ukulele. They were also on the tables. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
The 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival drew about 220 people Tuesday, May 21, to Azure Hills Seventh Day Adventist Church in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Sami Muller reacts to a ukulele performance Tuesday, May 21, at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Rialto resident Andrea Street, of the Rio-Altas band, plays Tuesday, May 21, at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Many attached flowers to their ukulele Tuesday, May 21, at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
Ukuleles range in price from $30 to $3,000, said Barry Thompson, an organizer of the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival, held Tuesday, May 21, in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
The Pink Ukuladies and Gents of Banning take a lunch break Tuesday, May 21, from performing at the 17th Annual Inland Empire Ukulele Festival in Grand Terrace. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)
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Eleven ukulele groups gathered at the Azure Hills Seventh Day Adventist Church to showcase their talent.


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Some, such as the Palm Desert Strummers and the Fallbrook Strummers Ukulele Group, drove from afar to take part. Some also traveled from Lake Gregory and Rancho Cucuamonga. The event also featured raffles, vendors and lunch.
Each band played two prepared pieces, then all joined together for a medley of traditional Hawaiian songs.

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