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Today’s Email Announcements

Big Summer Concerts On the Way at Biltmore Estate in Asheville

ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Rock band Daughtry, fronted by Chris Daughtry, kicks off Biltmore’s 20th annual Concert Series on July 28.

Biltmore’s unique concert venue offers views of the 250-room Biltmore House in one direction, and sunset views of Mount Pisgah and the Blue Ridge Mountains in the other.

Daughtry has released four studio albums, garnered four Grammy nominations, and sold more than 8.2 million albums and 16 million singles worldwide. The band has also earned four No. 1 radio singles, including the multi-format No. 1 song “It’s Not Over.”

A variety of ticket, dining and lodging packages are available. Tickets do not include or require estate admission, but may be purchased online at www.biltmore.com/concerts; by calling 866-336-1255; or in person at Biltmore’s Reservation and Ticketing Sales Center.

All concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. Performers and dates are subject to change.

The full 2016 Biltmore Concert Series line-up:

July 28      Daughtry

Aug. 12     Casting Crowns with special guest Jeremy Camp

Aug. 14     Emmylou Harris and Mary Chapin Carpenter

Aug. 16     Boz Scaggs and Michael McDonald

Aug. 19     The O’Jays and Chaka Khan

Aug. 23     Rick Springfield with special guests Night Ranger and The Romantics

On the Same Page Literary Festival to Feature “Pretending to Dance” by Diane Chamberlain


(West Jefferson) – On the Same Page Literary Festival features the 2016 Festival Read “Pretending to Dance” by international best selling author Diane Chamberlain with upcoming events.

Events will begin with the Festival Read Kick-Off on Thursday, August 4, at 2:00 p.m. at the Ashe County Public Library. Books will be available to borrow or purchase at the kick-off and refreshments will be provided. The Festival will then present Festival Read Conversationsabout themes from “Pretending to Dance” hosted by area experts on topics related to the book’s themes:

Aug 25: Conversation on Adoption Issues – led by Dana Colvard, at Bohemia Coffee House

Sept. 1: Conversation on Family Dynamics/Secrets – led by Colinda Hendricks at Rosebud Bakery

Sept. 8: Conversation on End-of-Life Issues – led by Rev. Ken Morris at West Jefferson Coffee House

The Festival Read Wrap-Up Discussion will take place on Wednesday, September 14, at the Ashe County Public Library at 4:00 p.m.

Diane Chamberlain will appear at the On the Same Page Literary Festival on Thursday, September 15, at 2:00 p.m., at the Ashe County Public Library. She will also be at a “Lunch With An Author” event at 12 noon on Friday, September 16, and on the discussion panel at Saturday, September 17’s On the Same Plate luncheon at 12:30 p.m.

Chamberlain has written 24 books, frequently set in North Carolina. They are complex stories about family, compassion and forgiveness with strong elements of mystery and suspense. “Pretending to Dance” is no exception.  Prior to her writing career, Chamberlain was a medical social worker and a psychotherapist in private practice, working primarily with adolescents. She is currently at work on her 25th novel, also set in North Carolina.  

On the Same Page, Ashe County, NC’s Literary Festival, celebrates its ninth year in 2016 with award-winning authors and plans for a Festival filled with reading, writing workshops, music and more. This year’s Festival is scheduled for TuesdaySaturday, September 13 – 17. The Festival is sponsored by the Ashe County Public Library and the Ashe County Arts Council and is supported with major funding from Skyline Membership Corporation and many individual donors – the Page Turners. On the Same Page is also funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council. The County of Ashe and the Town of West Jefferson also support On the Same Page.

This year’s Festival authors include: Darnell Arnoult, Diane Chamberlain, Judy Cook, Elliot Engel, Georgann Eubanks, Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer, Jeremy Hawkins, Charlie Lovett, Beth Macy, Sarah Shaber, and Kevin Morgan Watson. See the websitewww.onthesamepagefestival.org for details about times and locations of events. Most are free and open to the public; some require reservations/tickets.

School Bus Driver Classes Offered in Avery County

School bus driver training will be offered August 2-4 on the Newland campus of Mayland Community College. The classes will run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each day.

Before attending the class, anyone who is not a current Watauga County Schools employee must have a recommendation from the principal or assistant principal at the school where they want to be hired.

“We encourage everyone who is interested in being a school bus driver to obtain the required recommendation and attend these classes,” said WCS Transportation Director Jeff Lyons.

A school bus driver training class must be completed in order to receive the license (CDL) required to drive a school bus in North Carolina. The current starting pay for school bus drivers in Watauga County is $13.32 per hour.

Each student’s driving record is screened through the NC Division of Motor Vehicles the first day of class. In addition to the driving record check, a criminal background check is conducted of all prospective school system employees before they start work.

For additional information, contact Jeff Lyons at 828 264-6391.

Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild to Meet Aug. 4

The Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild will hold its monthly meeting on Thursday, August 4th, at 1:00 PM in the conference on the second floor of the Senior Center on Poplar Grove Connector in Boone. We will have a Quilting/Sewing Yard Sale during which the members will be able to sell and buy these items.  Part of the money will be given to the guild for buying fabric for donation quilts.  So gather up and bring items you would like to put in the sale.  Call Ann at 295-5039 to get guidelines for the sale.