Denim Ball at Chetola Raises More Than $115,000 for Moses H. Cone Memorial Park

Published Wednesday, August 10, 2016 at 11:54 am

Private donor offers $300,000 matching challenge for rehab efforts at the historic estate

On August 6, more than 160 guests showed their support for Moses H. Cone Memorial Park during The Denim Ball fundraising event at Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock. Thanks to their generosity, more than $115,000 was raised to support the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation’s efforts to rehabilitate the former estate of Moses and Bertha Cone at milepost 294 on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

During the sold-out event, the Foundation made the exciting announcement that an anonymous donor had come forward to match the participants’ pledges, dollar for dollar, up to $300,000. Any donations designated for the estate over the next few months will go toward this matching challenge.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Moses H. Cone Memorial Park is a recreational and historical resource for visitors from across the globe and residents of the North Carolina High Country. Unfortunately, the 3,500-acre estate faces critical maintenance issues due to shortfalls in funding from the federal government. The park requires private financial support to supplement the National Park Service’s budget. The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation is committed to ensuring the estate remains a cultural treasure and tourist destination that stimulates the local economy.

The Denim Ball was sponsored by Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock, Mountainaire Inn & Log Cabins, Cone Health, WNCW 88.7 FM, The Cemala Foundation and Blowing Rock Furniture Market. The Denim Ball Committee was comprised of Anne Barnes, Marcia Greene, Billie Howell, Deborah McDowell, Karen Robertson, and Emily Stallings. Thanks to donations by many regional businesses and individuals, the auction raised more than $12,000.

Additional photographs of the event by Kathryn Ray Photography can be viewed at www.brpfoundation.org/denimballphotos.

About Moses H. Cone Memorial Park

The park was owned and developed as a gentleman’s country estate by Moses H. Cone, an American captain of industry of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, who with his brother, Ceasar Cone, brought denim production to the South. Together they built a textile empire that still exists today.

Cone was not only a successful entrepreneur, he was an inquisitive gentleman farmer who experimented with agriculture and designed and built one of America’s most beautiful country estates. Beginning in 1897, he carefully created an impressive retreat featuring carriage trails, lakes, apple orchards, fields, and forests. His vision was influenced by a great regard for the natural landscape.

Before his untimely death in 1908, he constructed Flat Top Manor as the centerpiece of this idyllic mountain estate. After his passing, his wife, Bertha, operated the estate for nearly 39 years, adhering to his original concept. The 3,500-acre estate became part of the Blue Ridge Parkway in 1949.

About the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation

The Foundation is the primary nonprofit fundraising organization, 501(c)3, of the Blue Ridge Parkway, helping ensure cultural and historical preservation, natural resource protection, educational outreach, and visitor enjoyment now and for future generations. www.brpfoundation.org

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