Today’s Email Announcements

Published Wednesday, November 11, 2015 at 11:42 am

1) Apply Now for Grandfather Mountain Field Trip Scholarships

Grandfather Mountain offers students a unique opportunity — the chance to learn about nature from nature itself.

But with North Carolina schools facing sizable budget constraints, this isn’t always possible.

Enter the Grandfather Mountain Field Trip Scholarship, a program designed for schools in financial need, and one that’s already had a profound effect on some North Carolina students.

“My kids do not have a connection with the real world,” said Cheryl Bauer, a teacher from Valmead Elementary School in Lenoir, N.C. “Many of them have limited exposure to the gift that is out here in our natural environment.”

This past October, Bauer brought her third-grade class to Grandfather Mountain for an experience she’s certain none of them will forget.

Hiking in a pristine mountain environment, learning about native plants, watching river otters frolic in their habitat and overcoming fears by crossing the Mile High Swinging Bridge, the students were “totally amazed,” Bauer said.

“This connection with nature doesn’t happen while they’re (at school),” she said. “It happens when we get out of here. We’re a Title 1 school, so we have limited funding, and I was really excited to take my students out into this natural environment.”

As Grandfather Mountain education specialist Shannon McGee Henries can attest, that excitement is contagious.

“We were able to give highly curious, excited kids an experience they are entitled to but cannot afford,” Henries said. “Money shouldn’t keep a girl from feeling what a Fraser fir feels in 40-mph winds on the Mile High Swinging Bridge, a boy from running up on a boulder or anyone from seeing an otter swirl around in the water in front of their face. I could tell these kids were excited and loved experiencing the wonders of Grandfather Mountain.”

About the Scholarship

The scholarship was established in spring 2015 in honor of the late Nathan Pribble, a teenager who loved the “great outdoors.” But to Pribble, that term was something of an understatement.

To him, it meant connecting with nature — a wholesome, organic bond, enhanced only by sharing it with one’s family and friends.

He and his family — parents William and Robin, sister Kit and brother Carson — shared this connection at Grandfather Mountain, traveling frequently from their home in Apex, N.C., to the Linville-based attraction.

When Pribble died unexpectedly in October 2014 at the age of 18, his parents decided to honor their son’s memory by sharing his passion for nature with others.

“Nathan was a nature lover all his life, so it was only natural that we asked for memorials to go somewhere that would mean something to Nathan,” Robin Pribble said.

His family requested that memorial contributions be made to the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, the nonprofit organization that oversees the attraction, to help provide field trips for schools that could not afford them.

“Helping students that otherwise might not have an opportunity to go to Grandfather Mountain is something that would matter to him,” Robin Pribble said.

In addition to individual contributions made in Pribble’s memory, the fund is bolstered by a donation from Holbrook Field Trips, an Apex company that frequently brings school groups to Grandfather Mountain. The mountain welcomed its first scholarship recipients in October —Bauer’s third grade class.

Following the field trip, Bauer said she could now return to the classroom and make a different kind of connection — the kind that Pribble loved to share.

For Robin Pribble, it was a joy to see her son’s legacy have such a meaningful impact.

“For these students, having the opportunity to spend a day outside of the classroom and in the fresh air was life-changing,” she said. “I believe the students and chaperones left the mountain that day with more knowledge and love of nature than when they arrived that morning. It was a beautiful thing to see.”

How to Apply

Scholarship are offered for spring and fall field trips, and amounts are based on the stated need and number of students. Recipients may use the funding for all direct expenses related to the trip, including travel, admission and meals.

Scholarships are primarily offered to North Carolina public schools, although other organizations with students may apply.

Preference is given to:

·       North Carolina schools (pre-K through 12th grade)

·       Title 1 schools or those with demonstrated financial need

·       Applicants studying a specific content area or curriculum that would benefit from field-based study at Grandfather Mountain

Application deadlines are Dec. 31 for spring field trips and June 30 for fall field trips. To apply, download an application form at http://bit.ly/1kldGEH, fill it out completely, including an estimated budget for the trip, and return it to [email protected].

The not-for-profit Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation strives to inspire conservation of the natural world by helping guests explore, understand and value the wonders of Grandfather Mountain. For more information, call (800) 468-7325, or visit www.grandfather.com

2) See “A Christmas Carol” in Wilkes Nov. 14-22

Bleu Moon Productions will present the Charles Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol” Nov. 14-22 in the Mayes “Pit” Auditorium located in Thompson Hall on the main campus of Wilkes Community College. Call 336-838-4278 or visit www.bleumoonproductions.com for more information and showtimes. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for students and seniors and $2 off with donation of two items for Samaritans Kitchen of Wilkes.

3) Fair Trade Christmas Market at First Presbyterian Set for Dec. 5-6

Shop for gorgeous handmade Christmas gifts and delicious foods that

change lives! First Presbyterian Church, 131 Big Valley St., Boone is

sponsoring a Fair Trade Christmas Market. Join us Sat., Dec. 5 from

9-2 and Sun., Dec. 6 from 9-2 and 5-9. Your support of our artisan and

farmer partners helps to build healthier and more sustainable

communities worldwide. Help break the cycle of poverty while checking

off your Christmas list! Fair trade items start under $3 and include

chocolate, food, ornaments, crèches, home goods, jewelry, scarves,

bags, and more! We’ll also have gift cards from Heifer International

and honor cards from Hospitality House of Boone available for

purchase. Gift wrapping available Saturday only. Cash, check or credit

card accepted. Together, we can make an impact this holiday season!

4)  Quintessential Graduate Vocal Ensemble to Perform Nov. 17

Vocal performances at their best will be presented by Quintessential Nov. 17 at 8 p.m. in Broyhill Music Center’s Rosen Concert Hall. Quintessential is a five-member graduate vocal ensemble from the Hayes School of Music.

The vocalists are Bree Jordan, soprano, Elizabeth Chapa, soprano, Kimberly Hilton, mezzo-soprano, Remy Martin, tenor, and Evan Adair, baritone. Accompanists are Jonathan Asbell and Rodney Ward.

The program includes “Hear me, O Lord” by Carlisle Floyd, “I Want Magic” from “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “Sigh no more, ladies” by Ralph Vaughan Williams, “Caro nome” from “Rigoletto” and  “Nous avons en tête” from “Carmen.”

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