1000 x 90

The Denim Ball Raises $240,000 in Support of Moses H. Cone Memorial Park

(Left to right) Janet Stout, Eric and Diane Overcash, Richard Gambill, and Bob Stout at The Denim Ball on Sept. 15, 2022.

New record set for fundraiser hosted by Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation

BLOWING ROCK, N.C. – More than 200 guests attended The Denim Ball hosted by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation on Thursday, Sept. 15, at Moses H. Cone Memorial Park. The event surpassed its previous fundraising record, garnering $240,000 in support for continuing improvements at Moses and Bertha Cone’s former 3,500-acre estate.

“It was truly special to share an evening with so many people who cherish the estate and recognize that its future can hold so much more,” said Jordan Calaway, Chief Development Officer for the Foundation. “Their outstanding commitment means we can continue a strong tradition of stewardship for this Parkway gem.”

Catherine Vitale and Dottie Farfone at The Denim Ball on Sept. 15, 2022.

The renovated exterior of Flat Top Manor served as the backdrop for the festivities hosted on the front lawn of the majestic circa-1901 home perched on a hill overlooking Bass Lake. The rehabilitation, completed late last year, included the replacement and restoration of columns, clapboard siding, woodwork, windows, balusters, and more on the 23-room house. 

Guests mingled on the front lawn, took in views of the estate’s rolling hills, and placed bids in a silent auction before enjoying dinner and a live auction. 

Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation CEO Carolyn Ward welcomed the crowd by pointing out the estate’s connection to the community. “Many people visit Yosemite or Yellowstone national parks once in their lives, but the Parkway and this estate are in our backyard; they are a part of the place we call home,” she said. 

Bob Stout, vice chair of the Foundation’s board of trustees, and Blue Ridge Parkway Superintendent Tracy Swartout also gave special thanks to the guests for their dedication to the care of the landmark site listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

The live auction led by auctioneer Jenny Koehn included beach and mountain getaways and fly-fishing and biking adventures. As the light faded, attendees danced on the front porch to the music of Soul Benefactor.

A gallery of photos from the event is available at BRPFoundation.org/denimball22.

This year, the Foundation is marking its 25th anniversary. Since its inception, the nonprofit has worked with the National Park Service and donors to invest in the preservation of Moses H. Cone Memorial Park, including successfully nominating the estate for the National Register of Historic Places. Past funding supported the construction of restrooms at Bass Lake, trail repairs, educational programs, and more. 

The premier sponsor of the Foundation’s 25th anniversary celebrations is First Citizens Bank. The Denim Ball was sponsored by The Rosemyr Corporation, Modern Automotive of Boone, Blowing Rock Charity Horse Show Foundation, Booneshine Brewing Co., Appalachian Mountain Brewery, Sunset & Vine, and Blue Ridge Mountain Club

Beth and Chris Wetmore with Bob Patterson and Melissa Viatori-Patterson at The Denim Ball on Sept. 15, 2022.
Tim and Pam Vines with Kathleen Austin and Geoff Long at The Denim Ball on Sept. 15, 2022.
Brian Grisham and Anna Beltramo during The Denim Ball on Sept. 15, 2022.