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Today’s Email Announcements

Ornamental Tree and Shrub Pruning Workshop set for this Saturday, March 24

Watauga Cooperative Extension Service will host a hands on pruning workshop on Saturday, March 24 from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. at Claussen-Burnley Park, 355 Hunting Hills Ln. Learn principals of making proper pruning cuts, look at examples in the park, then become comfortable with pruning through hands on practice. A brand new set of various types of pruning tools will be available for you to try, but you may want to bring your own hand pruners, loppers or pruning saws, so we will have enough for everyone. Registration not required, just meet at the pavilion. Call Watauga Extension Service for more information at 828-264-3061.

Celebrate Social Work Month on March 26

Join Social Workers and other community members for a celebration of all the amazing possibilities and realities of being a professional social worker. Refreshments will be served and door prizes will be awarded. 

Date: Monday, March 26, 2018

Time:5:00pm – 7:00pm

Where:     Watauga County Library, 80 Queen St., Boone, NC 28607

Berry Production Workshop Happening March 27

Watauga Extension is selling fruit plants this spring, come learn the basics that you need to grow blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries in a home garden. Registration not mandatory but helps us with planning. The workshop will be March 27 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Watauga Ag. Conference Center, 252 Poplar Grove Rd. It is free and open to the public. 

For more information, call 828-264-3061, or email paige_patterson@ncsu.edu.

Watauga County Republican Women’s Club to Meet March 28

The Watauga County Republican Women’s Club (WCRWC) will have its next monthly meeting on Wednesday, March 28 at the Sagebrush Steakhouse in Boone.

The meeting will begin at noon. All interested in furthering the Republican cause in the High Country are welcome to attend and are invited to join. Call 828-832-6864 for more information. The WCRWC meets the last Wednesday of each month. 

Watauga County Public Library to Close for Easter Holiday

The library will close on Friday, March 30 and Saturday, March 31 for the Easter Holiday, reopening on Monday, April 2.

The main library is located at 140 Queen Street in downtown Boone.

The Western Watauga Branch is located at 1080 Old 421 Highway, Sugar Grove.

Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild Meeting April 3
The Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild will hold its monthly meeting on Tuesday, April 3 at 1 p.m. 
The meeting will be in the conference room on the second floor of the Senior Center on Poplar Grove Connector in Boone. 
A well-known local artist, educator and quilter, Susan Sharpe, will present a program on “Art Quilts”.  A local resident since 1970, Susan’s work ranges in styles from realistic to abstract.  She  has been teaching for forty years and exhibits in regional galleries and national competitions, and has won numerous awards.  Last year she had an exhibit at the Turchin Center in Boone. 
Call Dolores at 295-6148 if you have any questions.
Beech Mountain to Host a Series of Town Hall Meetings
Beech Mountain Town Council has scheduled a series of Town Hall Meetings for the purpose of opening dialogue with the public to discuss and receive feedback on challenging issues within the Beech Mountain community. 
Each of the four meetings will have a main topic of discussion with additional comments taken on different topics as time permits.  Meetings will be held at Buckeye Recreation Center located at 1330 Beech Mountain Parkway Beech Mountain, NC 28604 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.  The meeting dates and main topics of discussion are listed below:

April 23, 2018 – Police Take Home Cars

June 25, 2018 – Infrastructure and Rates

July 23, 2018 – Sanitation

October 1, 2018 – Watauga River Intake

Community Blood Center of the Carolinas Holding Three Blood Drives in Boone Next Month

Give blood and help save local lives! Donate blood with Community Blood Center of the Carolinas. There are three dates in April to donate blood. 

April 3 – Appalachian State University ‑ Melanin in Medicine

Plemmons Student Union

263 Locust Street

Boone, NC  28608

11:00 AM ‑ 3:00 PM

April 12 – Appalachian State University Greek Week

Appalachian State University

170 Stadium Drive

Boone, NC  28608

11:00 AM ‑ 5:00 PM

April 14 – Appalachian State University Greek Week

Appalachian Panhellenic Hall

949 Blowing Rock Road

Boone, NC  28608

10:00 AM ‑ 3:00 PM

April Programs at Elk Knob State Park
Skins and Skulls
Drop in and check out the skins and skulls of animals that are found in this area.  A ranger will be on hand to answer questions from 1 p.m. – 2 p.m.  Table will be set up at trailhead parking lot.  In case of inclement weather, table will be set up at park office.  Sunday, April 15Saturday April 21, & Sunday April 22.
Wildflower Walk
Come walk with a ranger along the Beech Tree Trail to see the spring ephemerals.  Learn the names of the flowers and something of their nature.  Meet at the trailhead parking lot at 1 p.m. Friday, April 20Friday April 27.
Natural Pigments
Come see the different colors you can find in nature.  Learn the process of creating your own natural pigments.  Experiment with different colors.  Meet at the outdoor amphitheater at 1 p.m.  Wear clothes you don’t mind getting stained.  May be held at the park office in case of inclement weather. Saturday, April 28.

Citizen Science Program Needs Your Help Observing the Weather

Do you ever wonder how much rainfall you received from a recent thunderstorm? How about snowfall during a winter storm? If so, an important volunteer weather observing program needs your help! The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow network, or CoCoRaHS, is looking for new volunteers across North Carolina. The grassroots effort is part of a growing national network of home-based and amateur rain spotters with a goal of providing a high density precipitation network that will supplement existing observations.

CoCoRaHS came about as a result of a devastating flash flood that hit Fort Collins, Colorado, in July 1997. A local severe thunderstorm dumped over a foot of rain in several hours while other portions of the city had only modest rainfall. The ensuing flood caught many by surprise and caused $200 million in damages. CoCoRaHS was born in 1998 with the intent of doing a better job of mapping and reporting intense storms. As more volunteers participated, rain, hail, and snow maps were produced for every storm showing fascinating local patterns that were of great interest to scientists and the public. Recently, drought reporting has also become an important observation within the CoCoRaHS program across the nation. In fact, drought observations from CoCoRaHS are now being included in the National Integrated Drought Information System.

North Carolina became the twenty-first state to establish the CoCoRaHS program in 2007, and by 2010, the CoCoRaHS network had reached all 50 states with nearly ten thousand observations being reported each day.  Through CoCoRaHS, thousands of volunteers, young and old, document the size, intensity, duration and patterns of rain, hail, and snow by taking simple measurements in their own backyards.

Volunteers may obtain an official rain gauge through the CoCoRaHS website (http://www.cocorahs.org) for about $31 plus shipping. Besides the need for an official 4 inch plastic rain gauge, volunteers are required to take a simple training module online and use the CoCoRaHS website to submit their reports. Observations are immediately available on maps and reports for the public to view. The process takes only five minutes a day, but the impact to the community is tenfold: By providing high quality, accurate measurements, the observers are able to supplement existing networks and provide useful data to scientists, resource managers, decision makers and other users.

“Monitoring weather and climate conditions in North Carolina is no easy feat,” said Heather Dinon Aldridge, Assistant State Climatologist and Interim Assistant Director of the State Climate Office, based at North Carolina State University. “CoCoRaHS volunteers help by painting a better picture of precipitation patterns across North Carolina, filling in data gaps where there are no nearby stations.” 

 “An additional benefit of the program to the National Weather Service is the ability to receive timely reports of significant weather (hail, intense rainfall, or localized flooding) from CoCoRaHS observers that can assist forecasters in issuing and verifying warnings for severe thunderstorms,” says David Glenn, CoCoRaHS State Co-coordinator and meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Newport/Morehead City.

How does one become a CoCoRaHS observer? Go to the CoCoRaHS website above and click on the “Join CoCoRaHS” emblem on the upper right side of the main website.  After registering, take the simple online training, order your 4 inch rain gauge and start reporting!

“We are in need of new observers across the entire state. We would like to emphasize rural locations, areas of higher terrain, and areas near the coast,” added Glenn.

North Carolina CoCoRaHS can also be reached on Facebook and through Twitter.

CCC&TI Announces Summer, Fall Registration for New Students

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute will begin registering new students for the Summer 2018 and Fall 2018 semesters on March 29 on both the Caldwell and Watauga Campuses. Summer classes begin on May 29. The Fall Semester begins on Aug. 15.

A variety of financial aid options are available for students who qualify.

In addition to classes for adult students, CCC&TI also offers opportunities for Caldwell and Watauga county high school students to earn free college credit through the Career and College Promise program.

For more information on registering for classes at CCC&TI, contact Student Services at 828-726-2200 on the Caldwell Campus and 828-297-3811 on the Watauga Campus.

Upcoming Events at CCC&TI

Watauga Carry-Out Cuisine

The Watauga Campus Culinary Arts program will offer “Carry-Out Cuisine” on Tuesday, April 10. Meals are $20 per person and reservations are recommended. Cash only payments are accepted when meals are picked up on the day of service. Pick up times are 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Watauga Campus Kitchen, Building W141, Room 102. To make your reservation, contact Chef Robert Back at 828-297-3811, ext. 5222

April 10 Menu:

Cracklin’ Cornbread

Lettuce Wedge with Creamy Cucumber Dressing

Pan Seared Sesame Crusted Salmon

Oven Roasted New Potatoes

Asparagus Spears with Lemon Wine Butter Sauce

Fudge Brownie with Salted Caramel

Caldwell Cuisine Now Taking Reservations

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute’s Culinary Arts program will host Caldwell Cuisine on April 12 at 6 p.m. at the J.E. Broyhill Civic Center in Lenoir. Tickets are $21 per person plus tax. The event is open to the public but diners are required to purchase tickets prior to the event.


Starter: Spinach Salad – Carrot, tomato, bacon, sunflower seeds and mustard vinaigrette

Entrée Choice: Roasted Pork Loin – Sweet tea brined pork loin, grilled summer vegetables, fingerling potatoes and jus


Oscar Beef Fillet – Grilled beef fillet, warm crab, low country hollandaise, fingerling potatoes and summer vegetables

Dessert: Chocolate Cremeux – Spanish extra virgin olive oil, sea salt and tuile cookie

Free Job Fair Prep Classes

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute is offering free prep classes on April 10 (3 p.m. – 4 p.m.), April 17 (1 p.m. – 2 p.m.) and May 1 (5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.) in F-221 on the Caldwell Campus in Hudson to help job seekers stand out among the hundreds of attendees at Caldwell Is Hiring. Caldwell Is Hiring is scheduled for 9am-1pm, May 7 at the JE Broyhill Civic Center. Workshops include: resume help, interview skills and pre-registration for Caldwell Is Hiring. For more information, call 759-4677 or email: careerconnections@cccti.edu

Free Outdoor Movie Night at CCC&TI

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute will host a free outdoor movie night on Friday, April 13 at 8 p.m. on the Caldwell Campus in Hudson. The event, featuring a PG-13 movie, is FREE and open to the public. The movie will be shown in the parking lot in front of H Building and guests are asked to bring their own chairs. Pizza and drinks will be sold. The rain date is April 27.

All About Herbs Class at CCC&TI

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute will offer an “All About Herbs” course on the Caldwell Campus in Hudson that will focus on growing and harvesting herbs, pairing herbs with food, freezing and preserving herbs and making herbal products. The class is a “Make and Take Class” that will allow students to plant, maintain and take home their class herb projects, including herbal body products, dried herbs, herbal vinegars, recipes and more. The course will be taught by Master Gardener Debbie Mitchell and will be held on Tuesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. April 17 through May 22. The cost of the course is $70. For more information or to register for the class, call 828-726-2242.