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Renowned Artist, William Dunlap to be Featured at The Art Cellar with an Open House this Sunday

June 23, 2021. Truly American art unapologetically reflects American culture and landscape. Throughout the country’s relatively short history many popular styles have come in and out of fashion. One of the most difficult feats facing artists is to create timeless work, despite the ever-changing ideals and sensibility. To achieve this timeless quality, an artist must find the delicate balance between tradition and modernism. The Art Cellar Gallery is fortunate to represent artists of every stylistic background from traditional to modern. One artist that welcomes the challenge of portraying timelessness in America is William Dunlap.

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Horn in the West is Back with $5 Special Ticket Price for Watauga County Residents on Opening Nights June 25 & 26


June 23, 2021. Summer is here and July 4th is around the corner. Once again musket fire and early American music will share the cool mountain evenings with the sound of crickets and cicadas as Horn in the West opens this Friday, June 25th. After the 2020 hiatus, Boone’s classic Revolutionary War outdoor drama is back for its 69th year. With sword fights and fire dances, romance and humor, Cherokee warriors, redcoats and trailblazers, Horn in the West has been a North Carolina tradition since 1952. It quickly became a major attraction, depicting the rugged life in the Blue Ridge Mountains and the challenges faced by those who fled there to escape tyranny and conflict. The drama also features Daniel Boone, the legendary explorer, and the rough-hewn mountain community whose courage and sacrifice helped to turn the tide of the American War for Independence. Watauga County residents are invited to take advantage of a special ticket price of $5.00 per person on the first two opening nights, Friday and Saturday June 25th and 26th. By Stephanie Greer

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New Sidewalk Construction on Highway 194 Near Hardin Park School to Begin July 6; All Easements Needed Were 100 Percent Donated

June 22, 2021. During the June 17, 2021 Town Council Meeting, John Ward, Town Manager, announced that 100% of the easements required for the installation of sidewalks connecting Hardin Park Elementary School to Hwy 421 along Hwy 194 in front of the school have been donated by local businesses and entities. The construction of sidewalks will provide a safer way for children and parents walking to and from Hardin Park Elementary School. A signalized crosswalk will also be installed in front Hardin Park Elementary School, creating an even safer crossing area for the patrons. The Town of Boone wants to thank the NC Department of Transportation, which is funding the signalized crosswalk, our NC Board of Transportation Division 11 Representative, Cullie Tarleton, for supporting this safety project, and the property owners along the sidewalk route for donating these easements to the Town to help make this project possible.

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Ensemble Stage’s Summer Saturday Theatre for Kids Series Presents “Princess and the Pea” on June 26 at 11 a.m.


June 23, 2021. As part of their Summer Saturday Theatre for Kids Series, Ensemble Stage’s “Princess and the Pea” will premiere this Saturday, June 26 in the Hahn Auditorium at the Historic Banner Elk School at 11 a.m. The performance acts as a little taste of live theatre in the High Country that is kid oriented and family friendly. “Princess and the Pea” by Rebecca L. Byars and Lane Riosley is a cleverly adapted version of the Hans Christian Anderson fairy-tale that engages the audience and brings them into the show in a fun, interactive way. The story tells of a prince who wants to marry a princess, but is having difficulty finding a suitable wife. Something is always wrong with those he meets, and he cannot be certain they are real princesses because they have bad table manners or they are not his type. When a woman shows up claiming to be a princess, the queen tests the woman by placing a pea in a bed covered by 20 mattresses and having her sleep on it to see if the woman will feel the pea. Only a real princess would be so delicate that she would notice a small pea, and if she does, the woman will be allowed to marry the prince.

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Boston Lead Singer Tommy DeCarlo Playing a Free Show at Famous Brick Over Pizzeria on Friday Evening


June 22, 2021. A special concert by Tommy DeCarlo, the legendary lead vocalist for the band Boston, will be happening this Friday from 6-8 p.m. at the Famous Brick Oven Pizzeria in Beech Mountain. Local band The Collectives will open for him beforehand with music starting at 5 p.m. There is no cover charge for the show, and in addition to the great selection of drinks and food from the pizzeria, there will be bounce houses for kids to play in and some food trucks on site. Jimmie Accardi, co-owner of the Famous Brick Oven Pizzeria, asks that you refrain from bringing any outside food or beverages to the show. This is not the first time that Tommy DeCarlo has played a show at Beech Mountain. “Kate (Gavenus) from the TDA brought him up here years ago, I wasn’t that familiar with him at the time, but he blew the roof off up here,” Accardi said. “I got in touch with his son, Tommy Jr., and we tried to do something last summer, but with COVID we couldn’t pull it off so we rescheduled it for this year.”
By Nathan Ham

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Spectacular Summer Events at The Turchin Center! Re-Opening Event Friday July 2

June 22, 2021. An Appalachian Summer Festival offers unique and enriching arts experiences to audiences across the Southeast, combining world-class performing and visual arts programming in a spectacular mountain location in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. During an Appalachian Summer Festival, the Turchin Center hosts a variety of visual arts exhibitions and programs that dovetail with the performing arts. The community is invited to a Summer Exhibition Celebration on July 2 from 6–9 pm. During this debut re-opening event, the Turchin Center will celebrate seven exhibitions in grand style. This is a wonderful opportunity to meet the artists and gain an “insider’s view” of the featured exhibitions. This festive evening will include live music by The Mercury Dames and is free and open to the public. The celebration is generously sponsored by Allen Wealth Management, and is dedicated to the memory of Tina Silverstein, long-standing friend, leader and generous supporter of the Turchin Center’s exhibition, education and outreach programming.

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Native Plant Society Announces Final Native Plant Sale of the Season in Boone This Saturday

June 22, 2021. The Blue Ridge Chapter of the North Carolina Native Plant Society is announcing their final native plant sale of the season held at the Daniel Boone Native Gardens located at 651 Horn in the West Drive, Boone. The date for this event is Saturday June 26, rain or shine. In the event of rain, the location will be moved across the street to the picnic shelter in Boone Park. Both events will run from 8:00am to 12:00pm. At least 80 different varieties of perennials, ferns, grasses, sedges, trees and shrubs native to this region and well suited to our local growing conditions will be offered. Some rare species will be available.

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Holston Camp Pre-K Announces Enrollment for Pre-K program and Open House on July 16

June 22, 2021. In co-operation with Banner Elk Presbyterian Church Preschool, Holston Camp is now accepting enrollment for 3-5 year olds at their new afternoon Pre-K program at Director’s Hall. The program fee is $300 per month. Holston will pick-up and transport children from Banner Elk Presbyterian Church Preschool to Holston each afternoon at 1:00 pm. Participants may also be dropped off at Holston Camp at 1:00. Parent/guardian may pick up children at 5:00 pm at Holston Camp. Holston Camp offers a Pre-K program incorporating adult supervised education with outdoor play from 1:00 pm until 5:00pm Monday through Friday. An afternoon snack will be served.

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Lauren Waterworth and Cathy Futral are the Next Artists in Residency at Edgewood Cottage

June 21, 2021. Two artists will greet visitors at Edgewood Cottage from June 21 through June 27: Lauren Waterworth, Oils, and Cathy Futral, Watercolor and Acrylics. Lauren Waterworth grew up in Watauga County and has lived in Western North Carolina most of her life. She minored in Studio Art at Appalachian State while pursuing a major in Geology. She earned a Master’s Degree in Geology from Texas A&M University and a JD from Tulane University Law School. Lauren takes inspiration from the landscape and the natural world around her. In her painting, she tries to capture that joyous, incongruous feeling of familiarity and surprise, of being very much at home and yet being somewhere else. Come explore and enjoy Lauren’s art this week at Edgewood Cottage in Blowing Rock.

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Watauga Farmers Market in Full Swing with an Abundance of Summer Produce Available

June 21, 2021. It was another beautiful weekend in the High Country with big crowds continuing to show up at the Watauga County Farmers’ Market. “We have an abundance of green, leafy vegetables, beets and spring onions and you’re starting to see some of the summer crops creep in like tomatoes, squashes and zucchinis. There are always eggs and meats around vendors at the market,” said Matt Cooper, president of the Watauga County Farmers’ Market. “We’re having a great season and looks like we’ve got another sunny Saturday coming this season.” The market is open from 8 a.m. until noon at Horn in the West each Saturday and offers great varieties of products all morning long. By Nathan Ham

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Folks Gather to Attend Storytelling Tribute Performances in Honor of Charlotte Ross

June 21, 2021. Over the past couple of days, decent crowds have been gathering at Horn in the West for special performances honoring the late Charlotte Tanksley Ross, who was a regional storyteller known as “The Legend Lady.” Two cherished High Country cultural organizations, Blue Ridge Community Theatre and Southern Appalachian Historical Association joined forces to present excerpts from the award-winning play, “From My Grandmother’s Grandmother Unto Me,” written and performed by Ross’s daughter, Boone native Clarinda Ross. In the tradition of mountain storytelling, “From My Grandmother’s Grandmother Unto Me” tells the joys and sorrows of five generations of women in the author’s family with honesty and humor. Common historical events are related in terms of how they affected this particular family. The play is a testament to the power of family storytelling, and how it can shape the lives of generations. By Harley Nefe

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Spring Home Sales in the High Country Continue Record Pace; Over 1,200 Homes Sold in 2021

June 21, 2021. Housing inventory increased for the second consecutive month in May as total unit sales in the four-county area broke 1,000, a record pace according to the High Country Association of REALTORS© monthly sales report. A hectic spring buying season was evidenced by the sale of 1,213 homes worth $515.33 million so far this year, a 35 percent increase in unit sales compared to the first five months of 2019. (The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic impacted sales last year, though REALTORS© still sold 815 homes for $250.73 million). Another impressive metric is how fast homes are selling. In May alone, homes were on the market a median of just 49 days, the fastest turnaround recorded for a month within the High Country Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

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Sugar Mountain Offers New Information Kiosk For Visitors and Residents to Keep Up With What is Happening in the Community

June 18, 2021. Sugar Mountain has repurposed a kiosk located at 156 Sugar Mountain Drive and will be using it as a place to provide tourism and community information for visitors and year-round residents. Items that will be located at the kiosk include the new Sugar Mountain brochure and map, the Avery County Chamber Guide, High Country Host Visitor Guide, North Carolina Visitor Guide and brochures from many local attractions. The Sugar Mountain Tourism Development Authority funded the renovation of the kiosk that had been there for a while, and the TDA will be updating the brochures and information throughout the year, according to Sugar Mountain TDA Coordinator Mary Kate Litchfield. “We have two bulletin boards that contain flyers for local events and we also keep brochures in regards to things to do in the area and other general travel magazines,” Litchfield said. By Nathan Ham

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High Country Association of Realtors Hosting a Spring Clean Out Event this Saturday

June 18, 2021. On Saturday, the High Country Association of Realtors is putting together a “Spring Clean Out” giving people a chance to bring old files and paperwork that needs to be shredded as well as a place to donate some canned foods to benefit those less fortunate folks in the community. The event will take place at the High Country Association of Realtors Office at 4469 Bamboo Rd in Boone from 9 a.m. until noon. The Spring Clean Out is open to anybody in the community. The shred truck will be on-site until it is full or until noon, whichever happens first. Those interested in taking part in the food drive are asked to donate any canned food items that will go to benefit the Hunger and Health Coalition.

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Piedmont Federal Savings Bank Offers Financial Literacy Education for Students and New Carbon Offset Mortgage Loans for Home Buyers in the High Country

June 18, 2021. Piedmont Federal Savings Bank has spent a lot of 2021 coming up with ways to help people in their community. The bank’s Zero Carbon Footprint Mortgage requires no additional cost, paperwork or obligations and pays for carbon offsets over the first year for all mortgage customers. Offsets such as these will pay for programs that are working to produce energy from renewable, greener resources, programs that are handling methane gas at farms and landfills and even programs that are working to improve forest management. “One of Piedmont Federal’s lynchpins of our mission is to nurture a better quality of life for our community. As the environment becomes a bigger issue, we started to think about what were some ways we could make a difference. The carbon-neutral mortgage was born out of looking at this,” said Ginger Salt, the Chief Experience Officer for Piedmont Federal Savings Bank. By Nathan Ham

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Deep Gap Ruritan Stays Strong Through Pandemic, Awards Four Scholarships to Local Graduates

June 18, 2021. It takes a lot to keep a good community club down, and the pandemic was no match for the energy and dedication of the Deep Gap Ruritan Club. While its members at large were unable to meet every month during the last year due to mandated restrictions and necessary safety precautions, the club as a whole stayed strong. Much work was accomplished behind the scenes, especially by the committed officers and board of directors which met routinely in members’ homes and volunteered valuable time via phone and email conferences. No, there was no huge fundraising steak dinner, as has been the club’s custom for many years, but there was a successful raffle, private donations and other contributions that helped to keep their efforts afloat. As proof of the club’s ongoing and unwavering desire to serve its community, four recent graduates from Watauga High School were honored on Thursday evening, June 10, with club-supported scholarships to help with their college education. By Sherrie Norris

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Are You A Caregiver for an Older Adult? This Course is For You

June 18, 2021. If you are one of many individuals caring for an older adult, you are invited and encouraged to attend an upcoming virtual/online Caregiver Education Course, which is free and open to the public. Sponsored by the Boone-based High Country Area Agency on Aging, “Powerful Tools for Caregivers” can be attended from the comfort of your home. This evidence-based class is designed to help caregivers learn coping skills to help them navigate through their often tiring and frustrating caregiving journey. The six-week course is open to anyone in the agency’s seven-county service area which includes Ashe, Avery, Alleghany, Mitchell, Wilkes, Watauga, and Yancey. The class begins on June 24 at 1 p.m. and will run until August 5. According to Amber Chapman, Family Caregiver and Health Promotions Specialist for HCAAA, the classes will help caregivers learn to take better care of themselves while also providing the upmost care for their adult loved one. By Sherrie Norris

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Community Appreciation Day on June 19: Fun for the Whole Family in Boone!


June 18, 2021. Local business owners invite the public to attend a no-cost fun-filled Community Appreciation Day in Boone on Saturday, June 19, complete with food, live music, prizes, and fun for the whole family! During the Coronavirus pandemic, businesses across the nation were left to wonder if they’d have to close their doors. All nine merchants at the Gateway shopping center in Boone (home to Mo’s Boots, Verizon, and Serendipity Hair Studio) were able to survive thanks to the continued support of people here in the High Country… and now they’re ready to give back. The fun will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the shopping center parking lot and include live music, hamburgers and hotdogs, bounce houses for the kids, and a cornhole tournament (winner takes a $100 prize!)

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Summer Begins in the High Country on Sunday Night; Monday is the Longest Day of the Year

June 17, 2021. Summertime is already in the air even if the calendar doesn’t officially say it’s summer yet. The summer season in the United States officially starts at 11:31 p.m. on Sunday night, June 20, with the summer solstice. Monday will be the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere with sunrise at 6:09 a.m. EST and sunset at 8:47 p.m. EST., a total of 14 hours and 38 minutes of daylight. The changing of the season from spring to summer is marked by the day that the sun reaches its highest and northernmost point in the sky. This day is also when the earth is the farthest from the sun. Strangely enough, however, even though it is the longest day of the year, it does not have the earliest sunrise of the year or the latest sunset of the year. The week prior to the summer solstice always has the earliest sunrise time. The week after the summer solstice has the latest sunset times. The sun will set at 8:48 p.m. June 26 through June 30. By Nathan Ham

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Star Spangled Banner Elk Fourth Celebration is Happening July 3rd

June 17, 2021. Banner Elk’s Independence Day celebration returns with a new name and a new date after a pandemic-forced cancelation last year. The Star Spangled Banner Elk Fourth takes place Saturday, July 3, combining popular activities from previous years. The day begins with the All-American Banner Elk Parade at 11 a.m., followed by the Party in the Park and the famous Banner Elk Kiwanis Duck Races shortly after 12 noon. Meanwhile, the second installment of this summer’s Art on the Greene fine art and craft show sets up shop on the lawn of the Historic Banner Elk School from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The parade is among the tops in the North Carolina mountains, with cars, trucks, people and pets decked out in red, white and blue, and proceeding down Main Street from the Lees-McRae College campus to Tate-Evans Town Park. “It’s a patriotic parade that makes Uncle Sam proud,” says Banner Elk tourism director Nancy Owen, “with lots of cars, floats, kids catching candy and more. We’re getting many calls asking about the parade. People really missed it last year.”

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Ensemble Stage’s Summer Saturday Theatre for Kids Series Presents “The Fisherman and His Wife” on June 19 at 11 a.m.


June 17, 2021. As part of their Summer Saturday Theatre for Kids Series, Ensemble Stage’s “The Fisherman and His Wife” will premiere this Saturday, June 19 in the Hahn Auditorium at the Historic Banner Elk School 11 a.m. The performance acts as a little taste of live theatre in the High Country that is kid oriented and family friendly. “The Fisherman and His Wife” is a delightful adaptation of the tale of the fisherman who catches an enchanted fish and uses his three wishes to try to bring happiness to his wife. However, this specific performance taps into the magic of audience participation. Kids in the audience help create the sound effects for the show. As the fish grants the fisherman’s wife’s spiraling wishes, the audience creates sea and storms, goes fishing and becomes chickens and ducks in the farmyard. It’s a creel full of fun for the whole family.

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A Storytelling Tribute in Honor of Charlotte Ross, “The Legend Lady” – Blue Ridge Community Theatre Partners with SAHA for Benefit Performances June 19 to June 21 at 3 pm


June 10, 2021. Two cherished High Country cultural organizations, Blue Ridge Community Theatre (BRCT) and Southern Appalachian Historical Association (SAHA), are joining forces to honor the late Charlotte Tanksley Ross, a regional storyteller known as “The Legend Lady.” The groups will present excerpts from the award-winning play, “From My Grandmother’s Grandmother Unto Me,” written and performed by Ross’s daughter, Boone native Clarinda Ross, with live music by Appalachian ballad singer Mary Greene. Performances with take place outside at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, June 19 through 21 on the Coffey Cabin porch in the Hickory Ridge Homestead at “Horn IN The West” with a reception immediately following the Sunday matinee.

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