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February 11, 2016

L-RU Invites Community To Run 5K On Saturday, April 2

Hickory – As part of its 125th anniversary celebration, Lenoir-Rhyne University invites campus and community members of all ages to participate in a 5K run on Saturday, April 2 at 8:30 a.m.

The course will start and finish in the heart of LRU’s campus on 7th Street NE, leading runners on streets through and adjacent to the University. Early registration is open now through noon on Tuesday, March 22, and includes a premium, next level T-shirt featuring the event’s vintage LR logo.

Following the race, awards will be presented while participants enjoy refreshments, music, and offerings from local vendors.

Special prizes will be given to the top three male and female finishers overall, as well as the top three male and female finishers in each individual age group. Overall Masters male and female awards will also be given.

As a RunTimeRaces produced event, be assured this 5K will be well organized and provide participants with an experience to remember.

Registration packet pick-up is scheduled for the day prior to the event - Friday, April 1 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Fleet Feet Sports in Hickory. Runners can also pick up their packet on race day between 7:15 a.m. and 8:15 a.m.

Becoming a Sponsor

Through partnerships with local businesses and the City of Hickory, LRU continues to help strengthen both economic development and civically engaged development throughout the community. The University greatly benefits from local community and businesses, which provide internship opportunities, offer student discounts, and always help to spread Bear pride.

Please consider becoming a sponsor for this inaugural race and help make this an event to be continued for years to come. All sponsors will receive the option to feature their company logo on the race day T-shirt and include branded materials for race day packets.

To register visit For further race details, or to find out about sponsorship information please contact Allie Bentley, assistant director of marketing and communications at or 828-328-7979.

About Lenoir-Rhyne University:

Lenoir-Rhyne is affiliated with the NC Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and welcomes students from all religious denominations and backgrounds. The website is

City & Hickory YMCA Offer Free Swim Lessons To Residents

Hickory – The City of Hickory and the Hickory Foundation YMCA continue their partnership to provide swim lessons to City of Hickory residents at no cost.

The swim lessons are being offered to residents, ages six months to adult, and will be held from March 5 to April 16. The classes will be held on Saturday each week for seven weeks. The deadline to register for this session is February 27. However, additional sessions will be held throughout the year.

City of Hickory residents will need to complete a Residency Verification Form, as well as provide proof of address and a birth certificate for children under 17. Residency Verification Forms are available at the Highland Recreation Center administrative offices and the Ridgeview Recreation Center. Once a City resident has a completed form, they can register for swim lessons at the Hickory Foundation YMCA.

“The City of Hickory and the Hickory Foundation YMCA are committed to teaching the community to swim. Through the successful partnership that the Hickory Parks and Recreation Department has with the YMCA, we have been able to provide quality swim lessons to the Hickory residents,” said City of Hickory Parks and Recreation Director Mack McLeod. “We work hard to provide athletic programs and promote wellness. By working together, we have been able to provide a top-notch program for the community.”

The instructors are patient with the children and provide one-on-one instruction, utilizing numerous swim tools and various instruction methods. The instructors measure the level of swim experience and confidence each child has at the beginning of the program. They have the ability to work with each child to develop their techniques, while overcoming any fears of water or swimming in a fun environment. The instructors also involve the parents with descriptions of what they were teaching and how far the child has progressed.

For more information about the swim lessons, please contact Senior Recreation Programmer Angela Smith at (828) 324-6990 or

Residency Verification Forms can be picked up at the following locations:
Parks and Recreation Administrative Offices:
Highland Recreation Center
1451 8th Street Drive NE
Ridgeview Recreation Center, 115 7th Avenue SW

George Hildebran Fire & Rescue Raffle For Lori & Shane Bowman

Connelly Springs, NC - One family of a firefighter in the George Hildebran Fire & Rescue is going through a difficult time in their life. Shane Bowman is a past chief and current firefighter with GHFR. His wife, Lori, was diagnosed with breast cancer several years ago. At that time Lori underwent treatment and surgeries.

Since then the Bowman family has moved on with their lives normally, with Lori going back for scheduled check ups. It is with great sadness that we report that cancer has been found again. The Bowman family ask for your prayers as they face this difficult time in their lives.

GHFR firefighters and others want to help. Medical costs are rising and will continue to do so. Station 73 is sponsoring a raffle for Lori and Shane. We are going to raffle a Kimber Solo 9mm handgun. The tickets are $5 each and all profits will go to the Bowman family.

GHFR has partnered with Foothills Jewelry & Loan in Longview to make this happen. The gun must be picked up at their store and the winner must meet the requirements to own and possess a firearm in North Carolina. The drawing will be held on March 27, or before if all tickets are sold. You do not have to be present to win.

Tickets are currently on sale at GHFR, Tex’s Fish Camp and through GHFR Firefighters. Please continue to lift this family up in prayer as the GHFR believes in their hearts the supreme physician can heal her. If you would like to donate, please make all checks payable to Lori Bowman and mail to GHFR, 7470 George Hildebran School Rd, Connelly Springs, NC 28612.

For further information on ways to help, or to buy tickets, please contact Chief Bobby Craig at 828-855-4765.

LGBTQ Youth Benefit Show Some Love Friday, Feb. 12, At Bottega

Hickory - Come on out and join a fabulous, and delicious, fundraiser.

The Show Some Love event, benefiting the Catawba Valley Pride scholarship fund for local LGBTQ youth, is Friday, February 12, 5-8pm at Bottega, 261 1st Ave. NW, downtown Hickory.

Tickets are $10, at the door or at

Bid on a variety of hand crafted desserts to take home, stay for a while and enjoy wine and light refreshments, music, a Valentine themed photo op, door prizes, 50/50 raffle and more.

Auction items include a plethora of hand crafted bakery items  and Gift Cards to local businesses: Bottega, hatch, McGuire's, Backstreets, Taste Full Beans & the Hickory Community Theater!

Our Savior Lutheran Church’s Chicken Pie Dinner Is Feb. 20

Hickory - Our Savior Lutheran Church’s Lutheran Women’s Missionary League announces their annual chicken pie dinner on Saturday, February 20, 2016 from 5-7:30 p.m. Adult and children’s plates are available. It includes chicken pie, rice with gravy, cole slaw, green beans, dessert, and your choice of drinks. Take-out service is also available. Prices are $9 for adults and $5 for children 10 and under.

The church is located at 2160 35th Avenue Dr. NE in Hickory off Kool Park Road and opposite Clyde Campbell Elementary School. Please mark your calendars to join us for a delicious meal and great fellowship. Contact Information: Our Savior Lutheran Church, Sherry Craig, 828-781-1137 (mobile)

Living Life In Black & White Now Set For Wed., Feb. 17, CVCC

Hickory - Catawba Valley Community College’s Interdisciplinary Read Committee has rescheduled author and Western Piedmont Community College faculty member Leslie Dula McKesson’s campus presentation for Wed., Feb. 17, at noon.

Rescheduled from the original January date due to inclement weather, McKesson will discuss privilege and social justice Feb. 17 using her book “Black and White: The Story of Harriet Harshaw and ‘Squire’ James Alfred Dula” as a backdrop. Her talk will take place in the East Wing Auditorium at noon and is open to the public.

McKesson’s talk is part of a series of special events focused on this year’s campus read, “Blood Done Sign My Name” by Timothy B. Tyson. The autobiographical work of history deals with the 1970 murder of a black man by whites in Tyson’s (then) hometown of Oxford, N.C.

Leslie Dula McKesson

McKesson is the Dean of Business and Public Services at Western Piedmont Community College. She grew up in the rural, family community of Dulatown located in Lenoir, N.C. She completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her master’s and education specialist degrees at Appalachian State University. She is also currently enrolled in the doctoral program in educational leadership at Appalachian State.

McKesson developed a love of genealogy passed on by her father, Harold Dula, who spent much of his lifetime researching, gathering, and preserving stories about his family. Using her father’s research, McKesson wrote and published “Black and White: The Story of Harriet Harshaw and ‘Squire’ James Alfred Dula.”

Met with unanticipated success, it received a Robert Bruce Cooke Family History Book Award from the North Carolina Society of Historians in 2014. It is being sold in a number of regional history museums and through online genealogical and historical organizations.

McKesson’s talk is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Donna Ross, 828-327-7000 ext. 4111, or

The Cat In The Hat At County Libraries, February 17-29!

Newton, NC – The Cat in the Hat is coming to the Catawba County Libraries to visit with you! The Green Room Theatre is proud to present this special Read Across America Library Tour in conjunction with their Mainstage Production of Dr. Seuss's The Cat in the Hat, playing February 26th - March 6th in Newton. Prepare yourself for storytelling, and a lot of silly antics and fun as that tricky cat bursts to life at the Catawba County Library. He may even have some magic tricks up his sleeve! As he reminds us, "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how!"

The Cat in the Hat will be played by Caleb Sigmon, who says, “I love that the play is word for word from the book. It makes it lots of fun to do.

My favorite part of the whole thing is the pre-show which is an interactive time with the audience. It actually makes the audience a part of the story as the play unfolds.” Sigmon added, “I’m so excited about bringing the Cat in the Hat to the libraries!”

As Dr. Seuss said, “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.” Check out the following dates and locations, and steer yourself to the library. Don’t forget to bring your camera for an exclusive Meet and Greet photo opportunity after the programs.

Wednesday, February 17th, 10 am at Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library

Thursday, February 18th, 10 am at St. Stephens Branch Library

Wednesday, February 24th, 10 am at Main Library in Newton

Thursday, February 25th, 11 am at Southwest Branch Library

Monday, February 29th, 6 pm at Main Library in Newton

For the latest in library news, visit or stop by your local branch.

RugBugs’ Give A Kid A Cookie, Sat.’s & Sundays, Feb. 13-21

Hickory - The talented young actors of the RugBug Theatre are taking the stage this weekend with their latest creation, “Give a Kid a Cookie” a comedy about two hapless babysitters and some demanding kids.

There are eight performances, Saturdays and Sundays, February 13-21, at 2:30 and 4:00pm. Tickets are $5 each at the door.

For more information call 828-327-3855.

HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. This project is supported by the United Arts Council of Catawba County through the North Carolina Arts Council, with funding from the State of North Carolina and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art. The RugBug Theatre is a sponsored project of the Thursday Rotary Club of Hickory.

Photo: Back row: Emily Hussong, Ashlyn Harris; Front row: Paolo Saxton, Haley Matthews, and Caroline Harris from “Give a Kid a Cookie,” a production of the RugBug Theatre at Hickory Community Theatre. The children’s play begins performances this Saturday, February 13th. For more information call 828-327-3855.

CSC’s Engineering Time Has Been Rescheduled To Feb. 20

(Please note that this particular “Engineering Time” is not on the fourth Saturday)

Hickory - Children and adults alike will be fascinated by the world of nuclear engineering at Catawba Science Center on February 20, 2016, from Noon - 3 pm. As a part of the ongoing, hands-on “Engineering Time” series, participants will experience how nuclear power works and discover more about how we use nuclear science in our everyday lives.

“Engineering Time” will provide an opportunity to meet area scientists who work with nuclear energy and radiation on a daily basis, including Edward McFadden, System Engineer at McGuire Nuclear Station and Len Hurst, MS DABR, RSO of the Radiation Oncology Department at Catawba Valley Medical Center.

Using real Geiger Counters, visitors will be able to test the strength of radiation in common devices, such as smoke detectors.

Other activities will include trying on containment suits and viewing images from technologies that utilize radiation for medical purposes such as X-rays, CT scans, and PET scans.

“Engineering Time” is free to CSC members and is included in CSC’s general admission. These public events, usually on the fourth Saturday of each month, are possible due to the support of the Google Data Centers Grants Fund of Tides Foundation. Other sponsors include Catawba Valley Community Foundation, Fusion3, and US Conec.

Catawba Science Center is a nonprofit science and technology museum serving NC’s Western Piedmont Region. Special attractions include featured exhibits, a digital planetarium theater, and a marine touch pool with live sharks and stingrays. As a community asset and regional destination, Catawba Science Center is dedicated to changing lives and inspiring learning through science and wonder.

Funded in part by the United Arts Fund of Catawba County and the NC Grassroots Science Museums Collaborative, CSC is located on the SALT Block, 243 3rd Avenue NE, Hickory.

A Geiger Counter

Ministers & GHMA Community Lenten Services, Through Mar. 16

Hickory - The annual noon day Lenten Services sponsored by the Greater Hickory Ministerial Alliance and Hickory Area Ministers began on Ash Wednesday, February 10. This is always a great time of worship in this season of preparation as well as making new friends in the body of Christ.

The GHMA has an outstanding group of pastors offering leadership and a message with music for our time together?. The? services will begin at around noon and last about 30 minutes followed by a light lunch offered by the host church. These services are designed so that ?people? can come during their lunch hour.

The next two services will be hel?d? at the St. Paul's AME Zion church? located at 437 S Center St? Hickory. (828) 327-0623.

February 17: Rev. Steve Clark, Pastor, New Life Church

February 24: Rev. Mike Gordon, Pastor, Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church?

The last three services will be at First Presbyterian Church, 237 Second? Street, NW? Hickory, (828) 322-6343

March 2: ? ?Rev. Xenophone Lutz, Pastor, Gethsemane Baptist Church?

March 9: ? ?Rev. William Sims, Associate Pastor, Exodus Missionary? Outreach Church

March 16: Rev. Hilda Bailey, Associate Pastor, St. Paul's AME? Zion Church

(past: February 10: ? ?Rev. Charles Kyker, Pastor, Christ United Methodist Church)

Free Movie About Harlem Renaissance At Library, Feb. 15

Hickory - Patrick Beaver Memorial Library will host a movie night on Monday, February 15th at 6:00 p.m. The movie “Against the Odds: The Artists of the Harlem Renaissance” will be shown. It is a documentary narrated by actor Joe Morton and it tells how black artists from the 1920s and ‘30s triumphed over racial prejudice and segregation to shape the movement known as the Harlem Renaissance.

Movie Night at Patrick Beaver Memorial Library on February 15th at 6:00 p.m. is open to the public and registration is not required. Attendees will be entered in a drawing for a ticket to see the production “Ain’t Misbehavin’: The Fats Waller Musical Show” at the Hickory Community Theatre. Patrick Beaver Memorial Library is located at 375 3rd Street NE on the SALT Block.

This program is a complement to the play “Ain’t Misbehavin’: The Fats Waller Musical Show” that will be presented at the Hickory Community Theatre’s Jeffers Theatre February 26th to March 13th. Tickets for this production are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors, and $10 for youth and students. For the Thursday performances, adults and seniors may purchase their tickets for $14. Tickets may be purchased at the theatre box office from noon to 5:00 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, in person or by phoning 828-328-2283. Online tickets are available through Hickory Community Theatre’s website at

Celebrate Valentine’s Day With The Romantic Comedy

Outside Mullingar, Thurs-Sat., At HCT

Hickory - The Hickory Community Theatre is offering the perfect Valentine weekend entertainment with “Outside Mullingar,” a romantic comedy set in Ireland, now on stage in the Firemen’s Kitchen.

This weekend’s performances of “Outside Mullingar” are Thursday, Feb. 11 at 7:30pm and Friday and Saturday, Feb. 12 and 13 at 8:00pm. Tickets are $16. To purchase tickets, or for additional information click or call the Theatre box office (828) 328-2283.

Space is limited and advance purchase is strongly recommended for this weekend.

HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. “Outside Mullingar” is produced by Robert Abbey, Inc. and Dr. George Clay, III, DDS. This is the sixth production in the Theatre’s 67th Season, sponsored by Paramount Automotive and A Cleaner World. This play is suitable for general adult audiences and children over age ten.

Performances continue next weekend, Thursday, Feb 18 at 7:30pm and Friday and Saturday, Feb 19 and 20 at 8:00pm.

Photo: (from left) Bill Boyd, Elisabeth Bokhoven and Connie Bools in “Outside Mullingar,” on stage this weekend in the Firemen’s Kitchen at the Hickory Community Theatre. For show times, tickets and other information go to or call the Theatre box office (828) 328-2283. Photo is by Ken Burns Photography.

Post-Polio Support Group Meets Mon., Feb 15, At IHOP In Shelby

Shelby, NC - The Foothills Post- Polio Support Group, formerly called the Cleveland County Post-Polio Support Group, will hold the February meeting at the IHOP (International House Of Pancakes) in Shelby on East Dixon Blvd, across from Walmart on February 15th at 11:30 am. This will be a Dutch Lunch.

Our program this meeting is just enjoying our friendships and sharing fellowship with each other.

If you are a polio survivor please plan to attend. We would hope to see you there! Feel free to bring a caregiver with you.

For more information you may call Wanda-Greg Horne at 704-482-8807 or Dianne Garner 704-434-4928.

Traditional Musicians Showcase Is Sat., Feb. 27, Broyhill Center

Lenoir, NC - Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute’s J.E. Broyhill Civic Center will present the 18th Annual Caldwell Traditional Musicians Showcase on Saturday, Feb. 27 at 7:30 p.m.

This year’s showcase, titled “Cherish the Ladies,” will be hosted by local favorite Strictly Clean and Decent and will feature several local female performers and their supporting musicians.

Acts will include The Djangovers, a local gypsy jazz group featuring Lauren Hayworth on accordion, Kim France on bass, Justin Butler on guitar and Bobby Steadman on guitar; Acoustic duo Kathryn Waters and Kevin Smith; Alyssa McLean; American roots band Mama’s Remedy featuring Jill Benfield on guitar, Kurt Benfield on bass, Nathan Brown on guitar, Jaret Carter on guitar and Waylon Von Smith on drums; singer/songwriter Zoie Sain; Lynne Carter; violinist Molly Barrett; and vocalist Shelby Rae Moore with Brent and Chet Palmer, Rick Stapleton and Kurt Stracener. The Caldwell Arts Council’s Junior Appalachian Musicians also will make a cameo appearance. Nancy Posey will serve as the emcee for the evening.

Tickets for the show are $11 for adults and $5.50 for students and children. For more information or for tickets, call the Civic Center Box Office at 828-726-2407 or visit

Strictly Clean and Decent

Cast Of Harvey, At HUB April 7 Through 16, Has Been Set

Hudson, NC - Rehearsals are now under way for the classic comedy “Harvey,” to be presented as Dinner Theatre at the Hudson Uptown Building, (HUB), 145 Cedar Valley Road, Hudson, NC, 28638. Tickets go on sale Monday, February 15th. “Harvey” will run on Thursday through Saturday, April 7th, 8th, 9th, 14th, 15th and 16th. Dinner will be catered by Dan’l Boone Inn and will be served at 6:30 PM with the show to follow at 7:30 PM. Tickets are $30 for dinner and the show, $15 for the show only. Reservations may be made by calling (828)726-8871, or by going by the HUB Monday through Friday. Box office hours are 8:30 – 12:30 and 1:30 until 5:00 daily.

“Harvey” tells the story of Elwood P. Dowd and his friend, Harvey, a 6 foot 3 and ½ inch invisible white Pooka Rabbit. Elwood’s sister, Veta, intends to have him committed but through mistaken identity and poor communication, Veta herself is committed and the entire psychiatric staff work frantically to correct the situation. In the end, Harvey has affected everyone’s life! “Harvey” was made into a movie starring Jimmy Stewart in 1950; in 2012, the show enjoyed a Broadway revival, starring Jim Parsons of “The Big Bang Theory.” For further information, call the HUB Box Office at 726-8871 or Hudson Town Hall at 728-8272.

Cast and Crew of “Harvey” in the above photo:

Back Row left to right: Dennis Kevitt, Joe Icard, Jeff Beane, Jim Engelman, Keith Smith, “Harvey,” Adam Lowery, Stephen Starnes, Randall Norman, GC Trivett, Frans Boersma

Front Row left to right: Alexis McBurney, Kirsten McBurney, Katie Newkirk, Cathy Hawkins, Tera Enloe, Cynthia Hauss, Kerstin vanHuss, Carolyn Icard, Sierra Beane, Rose Bibeau

Western Piedmont Symphony Masterworks Concert III

February 6, 2016
By W. Gerald Cochran

Hickory - The Western Piedmont Symphony continued its Masterworks concert series with the third concert of the 2015-16 season at P. E. Monroe Auditorium on the campus of Lenoir-Rhyne University with a delightful concert of Romantic-era music.

The concert opened with music from the ballet Swan Lake, Op. 20, by Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893). The ballet tells the story of the princess, Odette, who is turned into a swan by an evil sorcerer and can only be released by being loved by someone who has never loved before. Interestingly, there are several different endings that have been used for the ballet – Odette remains a swan, Odette and Siegfried, her prince, overcome the evil sorcerer and live happily ever after, or both die and ascend into heaven as swans, to name but a few. In any event, the music, however, is timeless and gripping, and filled with love.

The suite that was performed was in nine sections. Notice should be made of the gorgeous oboe solos by Anna Morris in the first and last parts, the virtuosic harp playing by Helen Rifas in the Scene: Odette and the Prince, along with wonderful violin and cello solos by Michelle Lie and Serafim Smigelskiy, respectively, in the same section. Principal trumpet Luke Boudreault also performed splendidly in his Neapolitan Dance solo. The orchestral playing was lush, with long, sweeping phrasing, truly worthy of the ballet.

The program concluded with Johannes Brahms’ (1833-1897) Piano Concerto No. 1 in d minor, Op. 15. When composing this work, Brahms had set out to write his first symphony, and after he had completed the first movement, changed his mind, and converted it into a piano concerto. This is a very large work, lasting about 45 minutes, requiring great stamina from both soloist and orchestra, for Brahms did not ever write music that was easy!

The guest soloist was David Gross, who was born in Germany, and is now an Associate Professor at Furman University in Greenville, SC. He has performed with many orchestras, both in the United States and in Germany, as well as with numerous extraordinary singers. He is also active in chamber music, and is founder of the Poinsett Piano Trio.

As soloist for the Brahms Piano Concerto, he appeared to “own” this piece, one of the few soloists I have seen on this stage that seemed to do so. His playing was nearly flawless, his fingers fleet and precise, his dynamics wide-ranging, and his legatos silky. His orchestral collaborators were just as fine, with a marvelous and energetic performance, in this, surely one of the greatest works of the orchestral repertoire.

Green Bean Players’ Puss In Boots, Fri. & Sat., Feb. 12 & 13

Newton, NC - The Green Bean Players are at it again. Join this energetic troupe as they present the classic story of Puss in Boots at The Green Room Community Theatre on Friday evening, February 12, 2016 at 7:00 pm and on Saturday afternoon, February 13, 2016 at 3:00 pm in the Black Box Theatre at the Old Post Office Playhouse located at 10 South Main Avenue in downtown, Newton.

Come experience this enchanting story of the clever cat who wears boots and is a master with the sword. Join Puss in Boots as she journeys with her newly found master through the countryside using her cunning skills to outwit knights, trick and ultimately defeat a great ogre, and help her master become king.

The Green Bean Players is a group of local actors, based through The Green Room Community Theatre, who specialize in plays for younger audiences. Seating is general admission and tickets are only $6 at the door which will open 30 minutes before show time. No advanced reservations required. Ticket price includes NC sales tax.

For more information about this show or any of The Green Room Community Theatre’s programs, visit our website at or call 828-464-6583.

The Cast of Puss in Boots:
Seated (L-R): Hollie Sherrill & Christian Underwood
Standing (L-R): Tara Hatton, David Townsend, Sara Lane, David Brown
Photo by The Green Room

Viewmont Business Association Meets Wed., Feb. 17, At Fourk

Hickory - The Viewmont Business Association will hold its first general business meeting of 2016 on Wednesday, February 17 at Fourk Restaurant. The meeting is open to VBA members and other community business owners and managers interested in the group's activities to promote commerce in Viewmont.

The meeting will begin at 5:30 with half-hour of business-to-business networking, followed by the general business meeting. Included in the meeting agenda is approval of the year's budget and election of officers.

The VBA accomplishments during its formative year included writing and adopting operational Bylaws, election of seven board members, introduction of a VBA logo, organization of the Viewmont Street Strut promotion and December's Holiday Open House.

Goals for 2016 include design and implementation of a VBA website and the introduction of a Viewmont Springtime promotional event.

The annual VBA membership fee remains $50. Interested parties may join at the February 17 business meeting.

Meet The Talented Ladies Of Ain’t Misbehavin’,

Opening Friday, February 26 At HCT

Hickory - Several common threads connect the four women in the multi-talented, seven person cast of the musical revue Ain’t Misbehavin,’ but what they most have in common is a passion for singing.

Ittiely Carson is a theatre newcomer who was prompted by a friend to audition. “I thought it was a good time,“ she said. “This is somewhat of a ‘bucket list’ item for me and I’m glad to have this opportunity.” Carson does furniture sales and design for Bumbarger’s Office Furniture, is active in several community groups and her church, and is a member of the School Board for Hickory Public Schools. She is a native of Hickory and graduate of Hickory High School.

Sharon Clark and Renetta Hamrick are fellow HHS alums and Hickory natives. Clark is an alcohol and drug addiction therapist for Focus Behavioral Health Care and is in the choir and praise team at her church, Clinton Tabernacle AME Zion, where she is also the website coordinator. She attended Gardner-Webb and Phoenix Universities and has degrees in Human Services and Social Services. Hamrick is a substitute teacher for Newton-Conover Schools. She is Social Media Coordinator and van driver for Morningstar Baptist Church and is a member of the Mass Choir. Hamrick and Clark both competed in “Dueling Divas” in October where Clark placed in the top five and Hamrick was second runner-up, and both were also in the cast of the Theatre’s 2015 production of Crowns, which received the Kay Award for Outstanding Ensemble.

Thelma Eley is another Crowns cast member returning for this production, and received the Supporting Actress Kay Award for the role of Mabel. She and her family relocated to Hickory in 2005 after a job transfer. She is Procurement Manager for CBRE, Inc. Like Hamrick, she is a member of the choir at Morningstar Baptist. She is also a member of the Hickory Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Performances of Ain’t Misbehavin’ are February 26th through March 13th. Tickets are $20, seniors are $2 off; tickets for students and youth age 18 & under are $10. Thursday nights, all adult and senior tickets are just $14. Click to purchase tickets, or for additional information or call the Theatre box office (828) 328-2283. The play is rated PG for mature content.

HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. Ain’t Misbehavin’ is produced by Alex Lee, Inc. and is the seventh production in the Theatre’s 67th Season, sponsored by Paramount Automotive and A Cleaner World. This production is a project supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, and with additional funding from the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation and the Beaver Family Foundation.

Photo: Renetta Hamrick, Ittiely Carson, Sharon Clark and Thelma Eley are the ladies in the cast of Ain’t Misbehavin.’ .The production opens February 26th at the Hickory Community Theatre. For information and tickets go to or call 828-328-2283.

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