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Email Announcements Received Today: See What’s Going On Around The Community

1) High Country Recreation Announces Scholarship Program

High Country Recreation is pleased to announce a scholarship program that will be available to local groups who provide recreation related services. High Country Recreation has set aside $2,000 to be given away this fall to recreation groups who apply and qualify for this program with grant amounts of $500. The money for these scholarships is made possible by generous donations of Blue Ridge Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, OP Smiles, Stick Boy Bread Company and Wells Fargo. All scholarship money will be given through recreation groups who will then distribute to individuals or families who may not be able to participate due to financial constraints. This money will be used to increase current scholarship programs and cannot go to general operating budgets. The deadline for the application process is Sept. 30. To apply, visit the website here and fill out an online application.

2) Red Cross Blood Donation Opportunities Sept. 16-30

Disasters can strike at any time and the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to help their communities prepare for emergencies by giving blood during National Preparedness Month. The mission of the Red Cross is to help the public prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. A stable blood supply is central to ensuring patient needs are met during emergencies. Blood can take up to three days to be tested, processed and made available for patients. It’s the blood already on the shelves that can help save lives when disaster strikes. To help increase donations through the month of September, those who come out to donate blood or platelets throughout the month will receive a coupon by email for a free haircut at participating Sport Clips locations.

Ashe County: To donate in Ashe County, visit the National Guard Armory located at 1147 Old Highway 16 in Jefferson on Sept. 18 from 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

Watauga County: To donate in Watauga County, visit the Boone United Methodist Church located at 471 New Market Blvd. in Boone Sept. 22 from 2-6:30 p.m.

3) Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway Meeting Sept. 4

The Blue Ridge Parkway High Country Chapter will hold an informational meeting at Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corp – WAtauga District Office located at 2491 U.S. 421 South in Boone on Thursday, Sept. 4 from 6-7:30 p.m. We have terrific news! We want to inform you that FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway received approval to re-establish the FRIENDS chapter in the High Country community that will help preserve and enhance your section of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The other great news is that we would like to introduce your High Country Chapter co-chairs: Ray Russell and David Still, both from Ray’s Weather Center. As a result of the decision, we are seeking volunteers to join Ray and David and provide leadership by serving on the Chapter’s Steering Committee. The National Park Service is celebrating its centennial anniversary in 2016 and we want your Chapter to become a vital part of the Centennial events and activities in the community. For the next two years, FRIENDS and its network of Chapters are tasked with raising awareness about hte Parkway’s needs and engaging the stewards that will help us carry on our collective responsibility to care for this special place into the next century.

4) Watauga County Senior Centers Registering Students for Yoga Classes

The next 12-week session of Gentle Yoga is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, Sept. 9, from 6:15-7:15 p.m. at the Lois Harrill Senior Center and on Thursday, Sept. 11 from 11 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Western Watauga Community Center. The cost of each 12-week session is $74 per person paid in advance. This class is appropriate for beginners as well as experienced yoga students. The instructor, Akal Dev Sharonne, has been a yoga practitioner and teacher for more than 30 years. Her classes are a delightful blend of humor, challenge and wisdom. This class is designed for seniors age 60+ but other adults may sign up if there is space. To register at the LW HArrill center call 828-265-8090 or the Western Watauga Community Center at 828-297-5195.

5) Super September Vegan Potluck Held Sept. 25

The Super September Vegan Potluck will be held on Thursday, Sept. 25 at the Watauga County Public Library located at 140 Queen St. in Boone. Arrive between 6 and 6:30 p.m. and bring a generous amount of vegan food that would yield at least eight servings, your own place setting and a copy of your recipe or a list of the ingredients. Multiple copies to share with others would most certainly be appreciated by participants and it is a great way to add vegan recipes to your collection. Join us for a delicious an varied dinner with others who eat consciously. Feel free to bring guests, but just be sure to bring enough food to cover for their contribution.

6) 9/11 Commemoration Held Sept. 11

The Watauga Republican Women’s Club will hold a 9/11 commemoration on Sept. 11 at 8:30 a.m. at Republican headquarters located at 149 Meadowview Dr. in Boone. Coffee and donuts will be served. Everyone is encouraged to attend, especially first responders.

7) “Faces of Afghanistan” Artist Talk by Skip Rohde to be Held Sept. 17

Lees-McRae is proud to welcome North Carolina artist Skip Rohde to King-Shivell Gallery on Sept. 17 for an artist talk about his exhibit, “Faces of Afghanistan” which is on display until Sept. 26. The event will be held at 6 p.m. and is free and open to the public. Each of the 52 small-scale framed drawings depicts a native person Rohde encountered while traveling in the Kandahar Province of Afghanistan as part of the State Department’s stabilization team. Admission to the exhibit is free and open to the public. “This exhibit is a pictorial record of current people living in an area ravaged by war,” said Jason Sabbides, assistant professor of Communication Arts and Design and manager of King-Shivell Gallery. “It also gives us a glimpse at an artist that lived with these people during the current U.S. military operations in Afghanistan. His drawing technique can be juxtaposed with great masters like Rembrandt and is a fabulous opportunity for art majors and non-art majors to see such supreme skill.” The images focus on natives from the Maiwand District in Kandahar Province of Afghanistan. This area was the site of the Taliban resurgence in 2006 and is desperately poor, featuring poppy and marijuana as its cash crops and offering very few schools. According to Rohde’s artist statement, “My duties required me to meet with government officials and district elders on a nearly daily basis. Often, I would attend large meetings of district leaders as an observer. I usually had my sketchbooks with me and if the opportunity arose, would quietly daw the participants. Sometimes, back on our base, I would make pastel drawings from photos or sketches. Rural Afghans have amazing faces, full of passion, intensity, humanity, and the stress of living the last 30 years at war. I tried to capture their characteristics and show them as individuals. For that is how I saw them; each man an individual, yet rooted in the basic human desires to make a living, provide for his family, and raise his children in a safe and secure environment.” The Communication Arts and Design Program at Lees-McRae offers three concentrations, one of which is Art and Design. This concentration is desiged for students interested in fine art techniques and 2-D design. Coursework within this concentration explores studio art and art history, which makes viewing the work of visiting artists a perfect addition to the work explored in the classroom.

8) Creek Walk Arts Festival Celebrates Tenth Year

The tenth annual Bakersville Creek Walk Arts Festival, including dozens of fine artists and craftspeople, local food vendors and nonprofit vendors, will take place on Saturday, Sept. 20 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. This year’s event will feature artists from throughout the region: from all areas of North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, South Carolina and Florida. All have been carefully selected to ensure attendees have access to the highest quality of art and craft. Local nonprofit organizations including the Rhododendron Festival Pageant Committee, and the Centro de Enlace will be selling a variety of food and beverages with all proceeds going to these community groups. The Festival will also conduct a special Silent Auction featuring items from exhibiting artists, as well as local galleries, artists and businesses with all proceeds and donations going to support Mitchell County resident, glass artist and animal rights activist Jan Williams in her efforts to fight cancer.