Tickets come in “$20 packages” (for 10 chances to win) or “$100 packages” (for 60 chances to win)
Drawing: May 13, 2023, noon Eastern Time, live streamed at

For the first time, the IBMA Foundation is offering a choice of two prizes for the annual Strings for Dreams Bluegrass Raffle. In addition to the guitar described below, participants will be able to purchase raffle tickets for a truly unique pair of handmade cowboy boots valued at $14,500, created by renowned boot maker Lisa Sorrell of Sorrell Custom Boots in Guthrie, Oklahoma.

“I was raised on the music of the Louvin Brothers, specifically their gospel albums,” Sorrell said. “I spent my childhood attending a cappella, shaped-note, fire and brimstone camp meetings, so I understand their songs. I donated the boots to support the IBMA Foundation because I love music; I find joy and healing and hope in it. I understand the challenges of being an artist since I am one myself, and I wanted to support the musicians who create the music I enjoy.”

The boots will feature the Louvin Brothers’ iconic Satan Is Real album cover on the boot top fronts and a leather portrait of Ira and Charlie Louvin on the boot top backs. The suggested foot material is gray alligator, but the winner may choose to substitute black alligator or black calf. The boots will be custom fit if the winner is able to visit Lisa to have their feet measured. If not, the winner will provide their usual size worn. Boots can be made in any size, from men’s size 7 (ladies 8.5) to men’s size 13. The winner chooses toe shape. The soles are leather, with choice of heel height varying from 1 ¼” to 1 ¾”. No fashion heels, no option for adding a zipper, and no accommodation will be made for orthotics.

The completed boot photo displayed with this article is a pair of “Satan Is Real” cowboy boots made for Taylor Malpass of the Malpass Brothers. The raffle prize boots will look very similar, with a leather portrait of Charlie and Ira Louvin on the backs of the boots.

The other prize is a 1967 D-35 Martin guitar with a hardshell case, strap, stand, and other accessories, valued at $5,000. The guitar was donated by longtime IBMA Foundation supporter and current board chair, Fred Bartenstein. The guitar has a Sitka spruce top with a tortoise pick guard and gorgeous Brazilian rosewood sides and back. The tone is wonderful, with ringing trebles and a bass response that demonstrates why Martin brought out this model in 1965 with the trademark three-piece back as a higher end model than the D-28, with lighter bracing.

Raffle information: 

The IBMA Foundation is using a new platform for the all-online raffle ticket sales this year, which offers more options. At, you may purchase raffle chances for the guitar or the cowboy boots, get chances for both or, if you don’t want to enter the raffle, you can make a tax-deductible donation to the IBMA Foundation.

Remember: The more tickets you purchase, the better chance you have of winning the Martin guitar or the custom cowboy boots. Your ticket purchases support the work of the IBMA Foundation year round, including: project grants for bluegrass camps and afterschool programs for kids, bluegrass academies at festivals, bluegrass academic conferences; mini-grants for bands to present educational bluegrass programs at schools; five college scholarships for students focusing on bluegrass-related majors, broadcast media, sound engineering, songwriting, or other studies; the Neil Rosenberg Bluegrass Scholar Award, the annual Bluegrass College Band Showcase at World of Bluegrass in Raleigh; Arnold Shultz Fund grants to encourage participation in bluegrass music by people of color; and a variety of educational resources for educators and students of all ages.  

Ticket purchasers will receive an emailed receipt with ticket information for verification purposes. Purchasers must be living U.S. residents, 18 years of age or older, to participate and win. If fundraising raffles are illegal in your community, you will be unable to participate. (States that prohibit raffles altogether are Hawaii and Utah). Members of the IBMA Foundation board or those involved in conducting the raffle—including staff members or immediate family members of these individuals—are not allowed to purchase a raffle ticket. “Immediate family” is defined as spouse or partner, children, parents, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, in-laws, or spouses of your children.

Although all proceeds will benefit the IBMA Foundation, purchase of raffle tickets is not a tax-deductible expense (IRS regulation). The drawing will take place in North Carolina and will be live-streamed on the IBMA Foundation Facebook page. This raffle has been organized in compliance with North Carolina General Statutes 14-309.15—Raffles. The giveaway is conducted by and benefits the IBMA Foundation. For more info on programs and initiatives supported by the IBMA Foundation, visit

Return to the May 2023 issue of The Cornerstone.