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Today’s Email Announcements

Massive Camera Trapping Project Goes Statewide This Spring

Do you ever wonder what animals lurk in the wildest parts of the state? Or in your own backyard? With spring just around the corner, now is a great time for North Carolina residents, particularly those in the central and western parts of the state, to help uncover the secrets of local wildlife. By participating in “NC’s Candid Critters,” a new research project of the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission and N.C. State University, you too can become an important part of the largest camera trap survey ever.

Camera traps are motion-activated cameras that allow scientists (and non-scientists) to collect pictures of animals without disturbing them. Since the project’s launch in eastern North Carolina last December, participants have already sent in more than 50,000 images that will ultimately be used by scientists to learn more about the distribution of mammal species across the state, which in turn informs future wildlife management and conservation efforts.

The goal of N.C.’s Candid Critters is to monitor 20-30,000 sites spanning the entire state over the next three years, which would make it the largest-ever mammal survey of its kind. According to project coordinator Arielle Parsons, research associate with the Museum of Natural Sciences’ Biodiversity Research Lab, “To collect massive amounts of camera trap images from across all 100 counties in North Carolina, we really need the public’s help. The more people that participate, the more we can learn about North Carolina’s critters.”

No matter what county you live in, you can borrow a camera trap from a nearby public library to set on approved public lands. If you own your own camera trap, you can set it on either approved public land or in your own backyard. Then wait and see what critters you catch and submit those photos to the project using custom software. Photo contributors receive “rewards” for their submissions, ranging from Candid Critter koozies to t-shirts.

The North Carolina Aquariums have already deployed “critter cams” at their Fort Fisher and Pine Knoll Shores locations. Both aquariums are surrounded by large tracts of maritime forest featuring wetlands, scrub habitat, ponds and marsh. This past winter a number of deer and raccoons were spotted, while several foxes, coyotes and opossums were also photographed. “We are very excited to see what other animals are visiting the aquarium properties this spring,” says Carol Price, conservation research coordinator for the aquariums.

For more information, to sign up, or to view a list of favorite images already collected, visit NCCandidCritters.org.


Miniature Landscape Painting at BRAHM, Feb. 23

Join artist Rachael VanDyke to create your own miniature landscape painting on a square, smooth wood cradle. Rachael will share her tips for success in this unique format. All supplies are included: wood cradle, acrylic paints and brushes. Adults and teens of all experience levels are welcome.

Reservations required, sign up deadline is February 15, 2017. Call the museum to register. Snow date is Thursday, March 2, 5 to 7:00 p.m. Price $35 for museum members, $40 for nonmembers.


The Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild to Host Monthly Meeting, Mar. 2

The Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild will hold its monthly meeting on Thursday, March 2nd, at 1:00 pm.  We meet in the conference room on the second floor of the Senior Center on Poplar Grove Connector in Boone. Cath Evans from  Tennessee will be presenting our program, “Understanding Fabric”.  Cath is well known by many of our Guild members and is highly regarded as an organized quilt instructor whose patterns are easy to follow.  She will explain the way to recognize quality fabric by simply looking at the bolt of fabric.  You will learn how to find the best fabric regardless of price.  Call Dolores at 295-6148 if you have any questions.


CALL TO MEETING:  Watauga County Republican Party County Convention

Saturday March 4, 2017
9AM Registration, 9:30AM Precinct Meetings, 10AM-12PM Convention Business
Guest Speaker:  The Honorable Rep. Virginia Foxx of NC 5th Dist.
*  ALL registered Republicans are encouraged to attend.


The Month of March is Red Cross Month–Donate Blood Starting Mar. 1

During Red Cross Month in March, the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to join in its lifesaving mission by giving blood.

Since 1943, every U.S. president has designated March as Red Cross Month to recognize how the Red Cross helps people across the country and around the world. Red Cross Month is a celebration of supporters, who are the face of the Red Cross in their communities and bring hope to people facing emergencies.

Blood donor Timothy Sheely knows the need firsthand. His wife required 12 units of blood during emergency surgery following the birth of their son. “If it had not been for blood donors, she might not have survived,” he said. “Thanks to generous blood donors, I still have a wife and my kids still have their mom. I can’t possibly thank those people in person, but I can give a little piece of me back with each donation for the greater good.”

The Red Cross depends on blood donor heroes across the nation to collect enough blood to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals nationwide. Donors of all blood types, especially type O, are needed to help those rely on blood products.

Make an appointment to become a hero to patients in need by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming dates in March in Watauga County for blood donations:


3/1/2017: 1:30 p.m. – 6 p.m., Modern Toyota, 225 Modern Drive

3/7/2017: 1:30 p.m. – 6 p.m., Holiday Inn Express Boone, 1943 Blowing Rock Rd

3/9/2017: 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Caldwell Community College, CCC, 372 Community College Road


Improv Your Improv! with Wendy Piper, Sat. Feb. 25, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.


Appalachian Rhythm Dance Studio

249 Wilson Dr.

Boone, NC 28607


Do you want to learn to say ‘yes,’ to embrace play and to be more engaging? This class introduces and reinforces the basic principles of improvisation to help you live in the present, connect to others and infuse creativity into your life. This class is appropriate for beginners or experienced improvisers.

This professional workshop is the first in a series of educational classes hosted by In/Visible Theatre, Boone’s leading independent theatre and its newest nonprofit arts organization. Each three-hour class will take place at Appalachian Rhythm Dance Studio in Boone. Participants age 16 and up can register for one, two or all three classes online at www.invisibletheatrenc.org/education. Entry fee is $40 per class. The workshops have been designed to help both experienced and aspiring performing artists (high school, college and advanced students) explore communication and acting skills in the areas of improvisation, character exploration and the audition process.

About the instructor, Wendy Piper:
Originally from Corsicana, Texas, Piper is currently a resident of Abingdon, Virginia, where she has been performing and teaching with Barter Theatre for 13 years. Wendy graduated from Texas Tech University with a degree in Theatre Arts, then moved to New York City to pursue an acting career. After a couple of years and a nine month show tour, Wendy relocated to Los Angeles. It was there that she began improv training and performing at the Groundlings Theatre, home to alumni such as Will Ferrell, Melissa McCarthy and Phil Hartman. Wendy has been coaching and developing improv and sketch comedy shows in theatres, high schools and universities since 2004. When not coaching or performing, Wendy is directing her husband and two young daughters at home.


Name: Preston Perrin
Phone: (828) 773-7086