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July 17, 2014

July 22 Is Date For Dr. T. Anthony Spearman’s Farewell Event

Hickory - After nine years as pastor at Clinton Tabernacle African Methodist Episcopal Zion (A.M.E. Zion) Church in Hickory, Dr. T. Anthony Spearman has been appointed to St. Philip AME Zion Church in Greensboro, N.C. He and his wife Janice will be leaving Hickory in a few weeks, and they are looking forward to their new work there. Although the new pastoral appointment is the cause of his move, Dr. Spearman is excited about the progressiveness of Greensboro, and feels it is a good fit for his passion as a civil rights activist.

Dr. Spearman is well known throughout the state for his work in the civil rights movement, and as the third Vice President of the NC NAACP, his new location will put him closer to Raleigh and other civil rights leaders he works with regularly. Janice Spearman will continue to work at Alexander Correctional Center as a case manager, and commute daily from Greensboro. They will both be sorely missed by many here who love them, and appreciate all they have done to make Hickory a better place to live for all people.

Dr. T. Anthony Spearman and Janice Spearman

Spearman has served on the Hickory City School Board for three years and says, "Perhaps more than anything I will miss advocating for children and youth. I will miss the rewarding work of the Hickory City School Board, and will always cherish the strong relationships that I have developed here. Hickory has one of the finest superintendents in all of North Carolina."

He will also miss serving as a liaison for the Gang of One Program, and operating Clinton's Corner of Catawba which is a non profit agency he founded to support and advocate for families and youth. He plans to revision the program for the Greensboro area. Considering his departure he said, "One of the major challenges that I see for Hickory minorities will be to educate and mobilize citizens on the importance of voting. It must become a priority, especially among the clergy."

The community is invited to a send-off celebration honoring Dr. Spearman and Janice Spearman on July 22, 2014 at 5:30pm at Exodus Missionary Outreach Church at 1763 Highland Ave NE in Hickory. A light dinner will be served, and those who attend will have an opportunity to fellowship with them and thank them for their service to this community.

If you plan to attend the send-off celebration for the Spearmans, please RSVP to Rev. Susan Smith Walker or call 828-962-8196.

Junior Appalachian Musicians Camp Registration Discount

Lenoir, NC - Hey Kids! Pick up an instrument or put on your dancing shoes this summer and come JAM (Junior Appalachian Musicians) with us! Regardless of experience, Caldwell Summer JAM Camp is offering you a chance to have fun and learn a tune or two in old-time and traditional music. Cost is $30 if registered before August 1; after August 1 the fee rises to $40. Instrument rentals (guitar, fiddle or mandolin) are available for $15. Scholarships are available – please inquire.

Caldwell Summer JAM (Junior Appalachian Musicians) Camp will be held August 11-14 in downtown Lenoir and on August 30 at the Happy Valley Old-Time Fiddlers Convention. Students will perform what they learn on stage at the Happy Valley Old-Time Fiddlers Convention.

Camp will be open to any child aged 7-17. Classes will be taught in fiddle, guitar, mandolin and dance (based on interest).

For more information, please contact Adrienne Roellgen at the Caldwell Arts Council, 828-754-2486 or visit For more information about the JAM program, visit For more information about Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention, visit

This Caldwell Arts Council program is supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, with funding from the National Endowment of the Arts and a grant from the Unifour Foundation.

St. Luke’s UMC Children’s Music & Drama Camp, Aug. 4-8

Hickory - St. Luke’s UMC in Hickory, NC will be holding a Children’s Summer Music and Drama Camp during the week of August 4 thru 8. This is an all day camp (9:00 am - 5:00 pm) for children who are rising 2nd-6th graders. In less than a week, participants will learn, stage, produce and present the musical MALICE IN THE PALACE by Tom Long and Allen Pote.

The musical has a great script and music, and will have professional staff directing. The cost is very reasonable only $50 per child with scholarships available. For more information, please call 828-327-9837. To register online,

St. Luke’s UMC is located at 52 16th Avenue NW, Hickory, NC 28601.

Frozen At Summer Movie Fest, Friday, July 18, At L-RU

Hickory – Co-sponsored by the city of Hickory, Lenoir-Rhyne University will continue its Summer Movie Fest with a showing of “Frozen” this Friday, July 18.

This event is free, open to the public, and will begin no earlier than 8:30 p.m. depending on time of sunset. The movie will be shown in a grassy area behind the Mauney-Shaeffer building on campus. Please bring your lawn chairs or a blanket and relax outside while watching a movie with the whole family!

The Summer Movie Fest will conclude on Friday, July 25 with a showing of “Monsters U”.

Elsa of Frozen: Free screening on July 18

In the event of inclement weather, the movie will be shown in Belk Centrum on the LR campus. Check, the LR Facebook page, and the LR Twitter page for weather updates.

About Lenoir-Rhyne University:

Lenoir-Rhyne University was founded in 1891 and is a private, coeducational university with its primary campus in Hickory, N.C. Academic programs include more than 50 undergraduate majors and 24 graduate programs, the Center for Graduate Studies of Asheville, N.C., the Center for Graduate Studies of Columbia, S.C., and the Lutheran TheologicalSouthern Seminary in Columbia, S.C. Today, more than 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students are enrolled across all campuses. Lenoir-Rhyne is affiliated with the N.C. Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and welcomes students from all religious backgrounds. The website is

Caleb Sigmon’s Magic Returns Go OPOP On Friday, July 25

Newton, NC - Back by popular demand! Caleb Sigmon’s one-man illusion show will be making a triumphant return to the Old Post Office Playhouse on Friday, July 25, 2014! NOTHING UP MY SLEEVE is a Broadway-caliber show filled with professional lighting, hand-painted and very detailed scenic pieces, adrenaline-rushing music and a soulful, thrilling storyline. It is nothing shy of a one-man spectacle. During the show, Caleb makes a daring escape, plays with the weather, predicts the future and then travels back in time… taking the entire audience with him.

Born and raised in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, Caleb spent the majority of his childhood playing in cardboard boxes, fighting dragons, and playing Cowboys and Indians. A graduate of UNC School of the Arts and a working professional today, he has made his dream a reality – doing what he loves.

Craig Sigmon

We are proud to say that this show is 100% clean comedy and is appropriate for family audiences! This is not your typical magic show. NOTHING UP MY SLEEVE goes beyond illusion, beyond entertainment. Journey along with Caleb as he combines hilarious and moving stories from his life with hard-hitting, spectacular magic. NOTHING UP MY SLEEVE is filled with heart and adventure. It is powerfully funny, inspirational, and mind-blowing. You don’t want to miss it.

Caleb says, “I’m beyond thrilled to bring the show back to the OPOP! We packed out the house in January, and I have some huge, new surprises ‘up my sleeve’ for this big return! I am fully expecting a sold-out hometown audience. I have been blessed with tremendous support from my local fans.”

Tickets for NOTHING UP MY SLEEVE are only $12 and may be reserved by calling the box office at (828) 464-6128 from 10:00 am until 5:30 pm. The Old Post Office Playhouse is located at 10 South Main Ave. in Newton, on the Old Courthouse Square. For info about the Old Post Office Playhouse and The Green Room Community Theatre, visit:

Post-Polio Support Group Meets Monday, July 21, In Shelby

Shelby, NC - The Cleveland County Post-Polio Support Group will hold the July meeting at the conference room of the Life Enrichment Center of Shelby on Monday, July 21, 2014 at 6:00 in the evening.

The conference room is located at the back of the building. The center is located off Hwy 18 North on Life Enrichment Blvd, just north of Cornerstone Dentistry.

Each person attending should bring his/her own meal. Drinks- coffee and water - will be provided.

The program will be presented by David Thompson, a polio survivor. He will share his story of life with polio.

If you are a polio survivor please plan to attend. Feel free to bring a caregiver with you.

For more information you may call Janet Walker at 704-692-6249.

Red Roots, A Christian Country Trio, Friday Night In Valdese

Valdese, NC - Family Friday Nights in Valdese continues their summer concert series with the sounds of Red Roots this Friday, July 18th beginning at 7:00pm located in the Wells Fargo/Town Parking lot.

The lives of three, red-headed, identical triplet sisters are best summed up in the band name Red Roots. Their journey of growth can be heard and seen through the band, but was ultimately shaped by their "roots" of family, faith, and music. Nika Taylor- Lead Vocals, Guitar, Natalie Taylor- High Harmonies, Keyboard, Violin, Mandolin, Bass and Nicole Taylor on Low Harmonies, Banjo, Guitar and drums create a rich sound with pure vocals.

With a stage persona as fiery as their blazing red locks, these triplets engage the crowd with their story through real life lyrics and rolling banjos intertwined with rocking guitars. Through their unwavering boldness there is a Southern Mississippi charm that the audience will love. In 2013 these young ladies were chosen to receive the Favorite New Trio Singing News Fan Award.

Red Roots music trio at Valdese Family Friday

Their career has flourished and is apparent as they have opened for numerous entertainers including Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Charlie Daniels, Ray Stevens, Diamond Rio, Guy Penrod, Don Williams, Dailey & Vincent and many more.

Myra’s will continue their cruise- in and begins at 6:00pm every Friday night. Downtown shops will be open late during the Family Friday Night program.

The Valdese Family Friday Night Concert Series will continue through the month of September with great entertainment including Emily Minor, Little Johnny Trailer Trash, The Extraordinaires, Sound Barrier, Shakedown and many more!

Family Friday Nights is sponsored by the Town of Valdese, The Valdese Merchants Association and The News Herald. For further information regarding the Town of Valdese and their events go to or call 828-879-2129.

Hickory Parks & Recreation Girls’ Softball Camp, July 21-23

Hickory – Hickory Parks and Recreation to hold a girls’ softball camp in July.

The second girls’ softball camp for ages 9 through 12 years old will be held at Stanford Park in July. The hitting and fielding camp will be July 21 - 23, running 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Campers must fill out and return a registration form that can be picked up at Highland Recreation Center, along with a $50 non-refundable deposit.

Pre-registration is going on now, and participants are encouraged to pre-register by phone, email, or the form, but they can be taken the day of the camp, if there are spaces available.The camp is led by Dawon Millwood, a Lenoir-Rhyne University (LRU) Alumni. She was a four-year starter and standout for the Lady Bears. During her four years of college, she helped lead LRU to be one of the top 25 NCAA division II teams, each year.

Millwood was an All South Atlantic Conference (SAC) player all four years and was pitcher of the year in 2011 and 2012. She was all-region in 2010 – 2012. Millwood is LRU’s all-time leader in wins (100) and shutouts (43). In 2013, Millwood was the pitching coach at LRU, where they, once again, won the SAC tournament and went to regionals.

Following her graduation from LRU, Millwood went to Europe to coach and play professionally for a season. She was, also, the assistant coach for LR in 2012 – 2013 and helped coach Hickory High this past season.

Every camper will receive instructional assistance regarding the fundamental and advanced aspects of the fast pitch softball, the opportunity to participate in modified game situations, and a camp t-shirt. For more info:contact Donna Andrews, Assistant Parks & Recreation Director, at (828) 261-2248 or

Everything Free Event On July 26: Food, Kid Stuff & More!

Hickory - Exodus Homes, a Catawba County United Way agency, will host a special "Everything Free" Community Outreach event on July 26, 2014 from 11:00am - 2:00pm at the ?Ridgeview Recreation Center 700 1st St SW in Hickory. This will be a lively event with great music and testimonies of recovery from addiction and incarceration to encourage the community that people can learn a new way to live. Exodus Homes has been hosting "Everything Free" Community Outreaches for the past 16 years and many people have reached back for help as a result.

The "Everything Free" giveaway will include free furniture, clothing, Bibles, haircuts, manicures, and face painting for kids, with hot dogs and hamburgers for all who attend. ALFA will provide free and confidential HIV testing with immediate test results during the event, and the L

eague of Women Voters will offer voter registration. The Umoja Project will have information about the Theology of Inclusion, and Exodus Church clergy will be available to talk one on one with people who need spiritual support and guidance.

For more information about the Exodus Homes "Everything Free" Community Outreach, contact Rev. Susan Smith Walker at or 828-962-8196.

Photo: Participants in a past Exodus Homes "Everything Free" Community Outreach are seen praying together.

Local Artists’ Work Exhibited At Taste full Beans, July 19-Aug. 23

Hickory - Local artists Bud Caywood, Leslie Hamlin, Charles Kimso, Amanda Dobbins, Megan McKinney, Regina Carpenter, and Christine Brown will be featured in an exhibit at Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse in downtown Hickory from July 19 to August 23.

Artist, poet, and furniture designer, Bud Caywood has been creating art and word in North Carolina for more than forty years and has received numerous awards in all three areas, including the Daphne Award of Merit by The Hardwoods Association and the Pinnacle Design Award by the American Society of Furniture.

By Leslie Hamlin

His career as a furniture designer has allowed him to work with creative people in many parts of the world, including Mexico, Uruguay, Argentina, Canada, Brazil, China, and Italy. His own creativity has been nourished and influenced by the cultures of these unique places. His art has won awards judged by Juan Logan, Toni Carlton, Jim Kellough, and others and was recently featured at the Hickory Museum of Art. His poems have been published in many journals and anthologies, including Wild Goose Poetry Review, Referential Magazine, and Pinesong. He will also be the featured poet at the August 12 Poetry Hickory at Taste Full Beans.

Leslie Hamlin creates unique jewelry, decorative art, books and yard art from a tasteful blend of new, reclaimed, and repurposed materials. She is best known for her original painted designs on reclaimed windows. Her jewelry has been featured in Stampington & Company's publication "Belle Amoire's Jewelry." She has art in galleries and private collections throughout the US and abroad.

Amanda Dobbins is Taste Full Beans' "Resident Potter" and well-known for her hand-crafted and painted mugs, vases, pitchers, flasks and bowls. A lover of pop-art and art deco, these two styles are reflected in much of her work.

By Amanda Dobbins

Charles Kimso is a widely-known Hickory artist who creates furniture, watercolors, oils, abstracts, landscapes, and jewelry and teaches art at various locations in the area. He was recently named Taste Full Bean's "Resident Jeweler," meaning his jewelry will be available at the shop for the remainder of 2014.

Megan McKinney uses watercolors and acrylics to create a sense of serenity through incorporating natural elements and calming scenes in her paintings. She sees painting as a way of escaping and enjoying a quiet moment away from the demands of everyday life. She hopes to extend that opportunity to the viewer through the body of her work.

Regina Carpenter expresses herself using both graphite and acrylic mediums. Her favorite projects feature bold colors and texture. She has exhibited at Full Circle Arts, Hickory Art Crawl, and the Hickory Furniture Mart.

A civil engineer by profession, Christine Brown enjoys a variety of media and subjects, including oils and acrylics, portraits and architectural figures.

By Bud Caywood

A reception will be held for the artists on July 31 from 6:00 to 8:30 PM. Refreshments will be served, and admission is free.

For more information, contact Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse at 828-325-0108.

Seniors’ Prom At Highland Rec Center On Thursday, July 24

Hickory – The Hickory Parks and Recreation Department will be holding a Senior Prom for seniors, 50 years old and better, on Thursday, July 24 from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Highland Recreation Center, located at 1451 8th Street Drive NE in Hickory.

Seniors, 50 years of age and up, are invited to enjoy music and dancing for a night to remember. Attendees are asked to dress to impress and to bring their favorite covered dish or dessert. Drinks will be provided for this free event. A photo booth and games will be available. Attendees will be able to cast a ballot for the King and Queen of the night. The couple will be crowned and have a special dance. For more information, contact Recreation Programmer Lauren Townson at Westmont Senior Center at (828) 324-1200 or

Fundraiser To Help Hartman’s Haven Dog Rescue July 19

Hickory - The Apple Gold Group, a franchisee of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar, is proud to partner with the volunteers at Hartman’s Haven Dog Rescue of Conover, NC, to host a Flapjack Fundraiser on Saturday, July 19, 2014.All proceeds raised will be used to help provide medical care for rescue cats and dogs as well as hire new trainers for the incoming animals.

“Our Applebee’s team members always look forward to partnering with local nonprofit organizations focused on giving back to the community,” said Michael Olander, President and CEO of the Apple Gold Group. “We invite those in the Hickory area to join us for a Flapjack Fundraiser on July 19 to assist Hartman’s Haven Dog Rescue in its fundraising efforts.”

The Hartman’s Haven fundraiser will be hosted by the Applebee’s restaurant located at 2180 Highway 70 SE, Hickory, NC, starting at 7 a.m. Tickets for the Flapjack Fundraiser are $7 and can be purchased by contacting Randie Conner at (828) 228-0087. Breakfast includes a short stack of pancakes, sausage and beverages.

Applebee’s is proud to partner with local nonprofit organizations as a way to raise money for their cause. From ticket sales to event-day staff, the breakfasts are managed by the nonprofit organization with the assistance of Applebee’s employee volunteers. Breakfasts can be held on Saturday or Sunday morning, and cost the organization around $2 a meal. The Applebee’s Flapjack Fundraisers represent one of the company’s efforts to remain active within its local neighborhood. To request a Flapjack Fundraiser to benefit your nonprofit organization, please visit

Fiddler On The Roof Auditions Are July 28 & 29 In Hudson

Hudson, NC - The Town of Hudson announces auditions for the fall dinner theatre production of the classic musical “Fiddler on the Roof.” The auditions will be held at the Hudson Uptown Building on Monday and Tuesday, July 28th and 29th at 6:30 PM. The Hudson Uptown Building (HUB) is located at 145 Cedar Valley Road in Hudson, NC 28638.

“Fiddler on the Roof” tells the story of Tevye and his family with humor and pathos. The play is set in the small Russian Jewish village of Anatevka in 1905. Tevye has five daughters, three of them approaching the age that they are about to be married. Tradition dictates that a matchmaker arranges marriages with the consent of the parents, but with no input from the young couples. Tevye’s daughters challenge this custom. The play is a microcosm of crumbling values and tradition from within the family and village, and political pressure from without.

The show contains many well known songs such as: Tradition, Matchmaker, Matchmaker, If I Were a Rich Man, Sabbath Prayer, To Life, To Life, L’Chaim, Miracle of Miracles, Sunrise, Sunset, Now I Have Everything, Do You Love Me?, Far From the Home I Love and Anatevka among many others.

Performance dates are Thursday, Friday and Saturday, October 16th, 17th and 18th and Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, October 22nd, 23rd, 24th and 25th.

Auditioners are encouraged to bring a resume and a head photo shot if they have one, but they are not required. Additionally, actors may also bring a one minute prepared monologue if desired.

Everyone will be asked to read cold from the script.

Actors may bring a prepared song, but it must be sung by memory. An accompanist will be provided, please bring sheet music if preparing a song. If actors do not have a song prepared, then they will simply be asked to sing some scales and vocal exercises.

Please do not bring electronic devices as accompaniment for your song. Please wear loose fitting, comfortable clothing to go through some dance movements. No flip flops, please.

The role of Tevye has been cast. All other roles are open for audition. The director is looking at a cast numbering 40 – 45 actors, singers and dancers. Back stage help is needed as well.

The show will be directed and music directed by Mr. Keith Smith and choreographed by Ms. Leanna Bodnar. For further information, please call 322-3169.

HCT’s Happy Hunchback Opens This Thursday, July 17

Hickory - The Hickory Community Theatre’s RugBug Theatre troupe is now presenting “The Happy Hunchback and the Eager Ogres” with performances this weekend and next at Sonya’s Dance Academy downtown, 258 1st Ave NW.

Performance days and times are Thursdays at 2:30pm, Fridays at 11:30am and Saturdays at 2:30pm, through July 26. Admission is $4 at to door, general admission.

The KIA Hamster, from Paramount KIA in Hickory, is going to be there to greet patrons before the show at all three performances this weekend.

The play tells the story of an enchanted land where a boy with a disability makes friends with a band of ogres.

HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. The RugBug Theatre@HCT is a signature project of the Hickory Rotary Club.

PHOTO: The cast of “The Happy Hunchback and the Eager Ogres” (Back left to right: Ashleigh Walker, Angelina Prendergast, Byron Phillips, Allison Sigmon; front left to right: Caleb Sigmon, Bryanna Sigmon, Kenna Walton, Dalyn Sigmon). The delightful tale for children plays July 17-26. Call (828) 327-3855 or visit for more details.

87th Mountain Dance & Folk Festival Is July 31 - August 2

Asheville, NC – The Mountain Dance and Folk Festival, the country’s longest running folk festival, now in its 87th year of highlighting mountain culture, returns to the Diana Wortham Theatre this summer. The Festival runs for three full evenings, Thursday, July 31 through Saturday, August 2 at the Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville. Tickets are on sale now.

With introductions beginning at 6:50 p.m. and the show beginning at 7:00 p.m. nightly, the festival formally showcases an amazing repertoire of mountain performers – old-timers as well as the newest generation of bluegrass and mountain string bands, ballad singers, big circle mountain dancers and cloggers – who share music and dance that echo centuries of Scottish, English, Irish, Cherokee and African heritage. The festival begins Thursday, July 31 with Hometown Appreciation Night. In keeping with the grassroots flavor of the festival, local families and individuals are encouraged to attend to help kick off the first night of the festival.

Young cloggers at last year’s festival

Audiences at each of the three performances will see an extensive line-up of the best musicians, ballad singers and dancers; each evening features at least four dance teams from the very young to the young at heart. The popular and long-standing house band, the Stoney Creek Boys, returns to perform each evening. And each night of the festival features both well-known musicians and new talent alike, representative of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and its continuing traditions.

2014 Mountain Dance and Folk Festival Performance* Schedule (a/o 7/11/14):

(*Note: Performers and schedule are subject to change at any time.)

Thursday, July 31: Carol Rifkin and Jerry Sutton, Masters of Ceremonies; Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Fines Creek Flatfooters; Betty Smith; The Peg Twisters; Maggie Lauterer, Zack Allen & Jon Lauterer; The Griggs; Dance Team: J Creek Cloggers; Dance Team: Folk Heritage Smooth Dancers; Sheila Kay Adams, Jeanette Queen & Carol Rifkin; Crooked Pine Band; Dance Team: Green Valley Cloggers; Bobby and Blue Ridge Tradition; The Trantham Family; Dance Team: Southern Mountain Smoke; Whitewater Bluegrass Company.

Friday, August 1: Laura Boosinger and Kevin Hamlin, Masters of Ceremonies; Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Cole Mountain Cloggers; Appalachian Consort; Phil & Gaye Johnson; The Waymasters; Joe Penland; Dance Team: Appalachian Mountaineers; Dance Team: Avery Smooth Dancers; The New Broad River Band; Bryce Parham & Kathryn Brickey; Dance Team: Dixie Darlins; The Arrowood Sisters Band; Laura Boosinger; Bearwallow; Dance Team: Southern Appalachian Cloggers.

Saturday, August 2: Glenn Bannerman and Richard Hurley, Masters of Ceremonies; Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Mountain Tradition Cloggers; Paul Crouch & Friends; The Ross Brothers & Terry Woody; Brooke & George Buckner; The Cockman Family; Don Pedi; Dance Team: Bannerman Family & Friends; Dance Team: Bailey Mountain Smooth Dancers; Clearwater Connection; Roger Howell; Dance Team: Southern Mountain Fire; Southern Highlanders; Richard Hurley; Dance Team: Bailey Mountain Cloggers; Buncombe Turnpike.

Parking: Festival patrons can park off-street, at the parking garage on Biltmore Avenue - which also provides wheelchair access to the Festival - or at the various parking garages located throughout downtown Asheville.

The Tipton Hill Boys (Both photos: Tony Martin

The Mountain Dance and Folk Festival is presented by Asheville’s Folk Heritage Committee which also produces its sister event, the 48th Annual Shindig on the Green, a free gathering held each year at Pack Square Park on the Bascom Lamar Lunsford stage, with a stage show and informal jam sessions on Saturday evenings –July 19; August 9, 16, 23 and 30. Both events rely on the generosity and shared talent of the region’s finest old-time musicians and mountain dancers.

Raffle: The much-sought-after annual raffle items for the 2014 Shindig season are: a D-16 Adirondack acoustic guitar by C.F. Martin & Co.; and a 75” x 75” handmade quilt from a 19th century quilt pattern, created by local quilting collaborative Mountain Jam Circle. Raffle tickets are available at each Mountain Dance and Folk Festival evening and the winning tickets are pulled at the end of the summer Shindig season.

Ticket Information: Tickets (Regular $20; Children 12 and under $10; 3-night package $45 for adults and $24 for children) for the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival are available from the Diana Wortham Theatre box office: (828) 257-4530 or online at

For more information on the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival or Shindig on the Green, visit or call the Folk Heritage Info Line: (828) 258-6101 x345.

Perseid Meteor Shower Will Be Visible In NC In Mid-August

Rosman, NC – Astronomers at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) remind the public of the upcoming annual Perseid Meteor Shower.

Meteors result from particles of dust causing the atmosphere to glow as the particles enter the upper atmosphere of the Earth. The Perseid Meteors, or “Perseids,” are associated with Comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. In 1866 Giovanni V. Schiaparelli, an Italian astronomer more widely known for discovering the “canals” on Mars, determined that the path of the particles resulting in the Perseids was identical with the orbit of Comet Swift-Tuttle which had been observed in 1862.

A time-lapse photo of the perseid shower

This discovery was confirmation of a then innovative theory that meteor showers result from the debris of comets, a theory now widely accepted in astronomical circles. Since the Earth encounters this debris at the same point in space each time it makes its annual revolution around the Sun, we observe the Perseids close to the same date each year, around August 12.

In 2014 the Perseids are predicted to reach a peak of about 100 meteors per hour right around sunset, specifically about 8 p.m. EDT, on the evening of August 12. The Perseids are best observed between about 11 p.m. and dawn from a clear, dark location with a good horizon. Look to the northeast to find the meteors appearing to radiate out of the constellation of Perseus the hero (just below the “W” of Cassiopeia). Binoculars or telescopes are not needed to observe meteor showers.

Observers in the Carolinas will catch the peak of the shower as the sky darkens. (Civil twilight in Brevard ends shortly before 9 p.m.) However, the Perseid Meteor Shower is one of the more reliable showers and lasts for several days on either side of its peak. Thus, the mornings of August 12 and 13 should be best for observing Perseids this year but a few Perseids can be spotted before or after these dates. There will be a waning gibbous moon rising at shortly before 10 p.m. on August 12. Since the best times for observing the Perseids is after 11 p.m. when the radiant is above the horizon, the Moon will interfere somewhat with observations of the fainter meteors.

About PARI

PARI is a public not-for-profit public foundation established in 1998.  Located in the Pisgah National Forest southwest of Asheville, NC, PARI offers educational programs at all levels, from K-12 through post-graduate research.  For more information about PARI and its programs, visit  

Follow PARI on Twitter at   “Like” PARI on Facebook at

Caldwell Arts Sculpture Celebration - Artists Welcome!

Lenoir, NC – Caldwell Arts Council in Lenoir, N.C., in partnership with Tri State Sculptors Association, announces the 29th Annual Sculpture Celebration to be held 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014 at the T.H. Broyhill Walking Park, 945 Lakewood Circle in Lenoir NC.

The Celebration will feature sculptural artwork by artists from across the eastern United States who will compete for cash prizes totaling $11,000.00. Realistic and abstract, traditional and contemporary, movable and stationary, indoor and outdoor – sculptures of all types will be on display. The juror for this year’s event is Asheville artist Randy Shull.

Lenoir’s Annual Sculpture Celebration is recognized as the longest-running sculpture competition in the Southeast and a driving force in the area's sculptor-friendly environment. The event started small but now attracts artists and visitors from across the United States. "This is a great show for both experienced artists and for a first-time art experience," says Lee Carol Giduz, Caldwell Arts Council Executive Director.

First Place 2013: Standing Still, By Mary-Ann Prack

Food vendors, children’s art activities, and live music from the Sylvio Martinat Swing Band and Strictly Clean and Decent will be featured throughout the day

Blue Jeans Preview Party Friday, September 5

Many sculptors arrive early to install larger sculptures and to pick the best spot for their artwork. A buffet dinner will be held to welcome them and to introduce the judge and sponsors of the event on Friday, September 5 beginning at 7pm. This event is free for registered sculptors, $20 in advance for guests.

Artists May Register Now

Registration for Sculpture Celebration is open to any 3-D artist up to the day of the event, and each sculptor may present up to three sculptures.

Second Place 2013: Limestone Bench, Todd Frahm

Cost to register the day of the Sculpture Celebration is $80; significant discounts are available for early registration. Details of participation are available on the website

Lenoir, North Carolina is located in Caldwell County in the beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, off Hwy 321 between Hickory and the Blowing Rock / Boone area.

For further information about the Sculpture Celebration contact the Caldwell Arts Council, 828-754-2486,, or visit The Caldwell Arts Council is located at 601 College Ave SW, Lenoir, NC, 28645.

NC State Bluegrass Festival Is for August 14, 15 & 16, In Marion

Marion, NC - Adams Bluegrass, LLC, has announced that the 40th Annual North Carolina State Bluegrass Festival will again be held on August 14, 15 & 16 at Tom Johnson Rally Park and Camping Center at 1885 U.S. Highway 70 West in Marion, NC.

The three-day event begins Thursday, August 14th at 12:00 noon and goes until 10:00 p.m. daily. Open Stage daily from 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 noon.

Daily & Vincent

Thursday’s lineup features Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers, The Marksmen, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Russell Moore (IBMA Male Vocalist 2010-2012) & IIIrd Tyme Out.

Other featured artists include, Rhonda Vincent (Queen of Bluegrass and IBMA Female Vocalist seven straight years) and The Rage. Also featured will be country music legend Gene Watson and The Farewell Party Band performing one 90-minute show at 8:30 p.m. with special guest, Rhonda Vincent.

Friday’s lineup of talent begins at 12:00 noon and goes until 10:00 p.m. featuring Appalachian Express, The Primitive Quartet, Goldwing Express, The Gibson Brothers (IBMA Entertainers of the Year 2013), The Seldom Scene and Nothin’ Fancy.

Saturday’s lineup begins at 12:00 noon and goes until 10:00 p.m. featuring Cody Shuler & Pine Mountain Railroad, Tony Holt & The Wildwood Valley Boys, The Little Roy & Lizzy Show, Comedians, The Moron Brothers and Dailey & Vincent (IBMA Entertainers of the Year 2008-2010) will perform one 90 minute show beginning at 7:30 pm. Jimmy Fortune will perform at 7:00 pm (formerly with The Statler Brothers and Gospel Music Hall of Fame and Country Music Hall of Fame winner) and again with Dailey & Vincent at 9:00 pm.

Rhonda Vincent, Queen of Bluegrass

The Tom Johnson Camping Center and Rally Park has 532 hookups, including water, electric, most with sewer, bathhouses, as well as RV sales and service. Also a restaurant serving breakfast and lunch with other hot food concessions are on site. Bring lawn chairs (no high back chairs). This is a family show and no alcoholic beverages are allowed in the concert area. Security will be on duty.

The show goes on rain or shine under a covered pavilion, with tickets available at the gate. Daily ticket prices are $30.00 for adults in advance until August 4th, then $35.00 at the gate. A 3-day adult ticket is $75.00 in advance and $85.00 at the gate. Children ages 6-13--$15.00 per day or 3 days for $40.00 in advance, $45.00 at the gate. Children under 6 are free when accompanied by parents. Tickets may be ordered online at Sound by Blue Ridge Sound, Sherry Boyd, M.C. For more information:, Phone: (706) 864-7203 or Tom Johnson Rally Park (1-800) 225-7802.

Mentalist Ronn Winter, July 21, 6:30 PM At Beaver Library

Hickory - Adults and families are invited to Patrick Beaver Memorial Library on Monday, July 21st at 6:30 p.m. for a performance by mentalist Ronn Winter.  Mr. Winter will provide a performance with a unique blend of psychology, mentalism, magic, and humor to engage attendees in mind-blowing effects. 

Mr. Winter will share the science behind practicing mentalism by explaining how body language and facial expressions can help us to read a person’s mind.

This program is being offered on July 21st to tie in with the theme for the summer reading program for adults, ‘Literary Elements.’  During the month of July, several special programs for adults and families that are related to the fields of science and technology will be available. 

This event is free and open to the public.  Registration is not required. 

For more information, please call 304-0500 ext. 7235.  Patrick Beaver Memorial Library is located at 375 Street NE on the SALT Block.

Full Circle Arts Features New Works July 17-August 2

Hickory - Full Circle Arts will be featuring works from their six newest exhibiting members Thursday, July 17th through August 2nd. According to quilling artist Beth Oczkowski, “We are eager to show off our best pieces for this exhibit.”

The six talented local artists include: Susan Armstrong (pottery/jewelry), Noralie Cox (fiber art/jewelry), Sheila Isenhour (acrylic painting), Beth Oczkowski (quilling), Johnnita St. Clair (pottery), Rozzy Smith (acrylic painting).

Meet the artists at the Opening Reception on Thursday, July 17, from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. Light refreshments will be served. The exhibit includes a mixture of decorative and functional art available for purchase.

FCA is a non-profit artists’ cooperative located in downtown Hickory, 42-B Third Street NW (down the spiral staircase). FCA members are present at the gallery Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm and Saturday from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. More information about Full Circle Arts, classes, membership, or other upcoming events is available at 828-322-7545. You may also write to Full Circle Arts, PO Box 3905, Hickory NC 28603, or email Please visit our website at

Library Offers Free Movies For Teens

Newton, NC - Teens and families can beat the heat this month with free movies shown at the Catawba County Library.

Monday offerings include family-friendly films shown at 4 p.m. at the Main Library in Newton. On the roster are:

July 21: “The Iron Giant” rated PG

July 28: “The Secret Garden” rated G

Meanwhile, teen movies for ages 12-18 continue at Southwest Branch in Mountain View. The 4 p.m. Thursday films are:

July 17: “Iron Man”

July 24: “Thor”

July 31: “Avengers”

For more information about these or other free events at the library, contact your local branch.

Lincoln County Arts Accepting Sub-grant Applications

Lincolnton, NC - The ACLC is now accepting applications for North Carolina Arts Council Grassroots Arts Program sub-grants through August 15, 2014. Since 1977, the North Carolina Arts Council’s Grassroots Arts Program has provided North Carolina citizens access to quality arts experiences. Using a per capita based formula, the program provides funding for the arts in all 100 counties of the state through partnerships with local arts councils. The Arts Council of Lincoln County serves as the North Carolina Arts Council’s partner in awarding sub-grants to local organizations for arts programs in Lincoln County.

Applications are available for non-profit organizations whose purpose is to promote and develop diverse cultural arts programming in Lincoln County. Funding priority is given to qualified arts organizations, arts in education programs conducted by qualified artists, and other community organizations that provide arts programs in the county. Projects must occur between July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015.

Application forms and grant guidelines are available at For questions or more information, contact the ACLC at 704-732-9044 or email

Furry Faces Photo Contest At HSCC

Hickory - Humane Society of Catawba County invites you to enter the 4th Annual Furry Faces Photo Contest. HSCC is looking for “your fabulous, your funny, or your favorite” photos of your furry friends. The top 13 entries will be featured in the 2015 HSCC calendar. In addition, these winning entries will be permanently displayed on a color photo tile in the lobby of the HSCC shelter. All proceeds go directly to HSCC, which operates through the generosity and support of individuals in the community. HSCC does not receive any tax dollars, United Way funding, or receive portions of donations made to any national humane organizations. All donations to HSCC are tax-deductible.

For details on how to enter visit; contest ends on July 31st at midnight.

Augusta Southern Nationals This Weekend, July 18-20

By Kevin Thorne, for FOCUS

Augusta, GA - The Augusta Riverfront Marina will be invaded by the stars and boats of the Lucas Oil Drag Boat Series on July 18-20, 2014.

For the low price of $22, you can lounge on the river bank all three days watching the high power of these drag racing hydro’s glide through the water at incredible speeds. Single day tickets are $18.

These are not your average speed boats, far from it.

You will see and hear the Top Fuel and Alcohol boats which are sure to put a smile on the faces of young and old alike. The grassroots of drag boat racing will also be there to show off what they have to offer. River racers and Flat Bottoms are a couple divisions which always please the crowd.

You don’t even need to carry a cooler for refreshments.

The event has numerous concession stands for you to get that tasty treat or that cool drink to wet your whistle. For those old enough, alcoholic beverages will be available.

All you need is a lawn chair or blanket to sit on and the enthusiasm to enjoy yourself to the max. On the river bank you get the view down low where you can see each bobble and wiggle as the boats scream past.

If the river bank is not the place you wish to be … not a problem. You can purchase the Patron Badge which gives you access to the boat house and all it has to offer. High above the rivers edge you may relax on the decks for more of a birds eye view. An added plus, the boat house is air-conditioned.

The racing is all done and put in the books by sunset each day, so this will give you your evenings to take in a little scenery.

Augusta has a lot to offer visitors. This quaint small southern town has the beauty of the old south along with a touch of the future.

One favorite of most visitors is The Canal tours. Back in the 1700's and 1800's merchants and farmers delivered and received supplies via the canal to keep their community thriving. The canals are still used today and you may just wish to take one of the evening sunset tours to cap off a fun filled day at the races.

For the past 26 years The Augusta Southern Nationals have generated funds for the community, additionally helping nine Georgia Special Olympics groups in the area.

Come on out for a great weekend of racing, and help out children as well!

Tickets in advance are $22.00 for the weekend. A single day, either Saturday or Sunday is $18.00. You can purchase your tickets at American Speed Center, Anything Goes Gifts, Boots Bridles and Britches, Four Seasons Food and Fuel, Georgia Bank and Trust or

You can also charge by phone at 803-278 4TIX (4849).

Come out for a memorable day and help keep community support alive. The Patron Badges are $60.00 in advance and $70.00 at the gate.

Friday also will hold test and tune for all racers who wish to get a jump on the field, testing the water. The admission price for Friday is only $5.00. The entire event for children 10 and under are free.

Saturday and Sunday gates open at 8am, racing action starts at 10. Come early, toss down your blanket and mark your spot for the days activities.

Sponsors of the event are: Windsor Jewlers Coca-Cola, The Augusta Chronicle, Miller Lite, E-Z-GO, Lucas Oil Drag Boat Racing Series and Special Olympics of Georgia.

Crowd: Fans stand in awe at the action of the Augusta Southern Nationals. Photo Jeff Robinson/Teammedia1

Boat: Scotty Lumbert and his Spirit of Texas Top Fuel Hydro throws a huge rooster tail on launch. Photo by Kevin Thorne/Teammedia1






























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