Groundbreaking at the Historic Banner Elk School Property Enhancement

Published Tuesday, June 30, 2015 at 10:11 am

On Saturday June 27, a crowd gathered to witness the official ground breaking for the enhanced garden space at the Historic Banner Elk School that was funded by a generous donation  from Elaine J. Wold.  Speakers stood next to sketches of the vision of the gardens and entrance to the Historic BE School. The fence behind the elk statue was removed so that an entrance walkway will be developed from downtown Banner Elk to the school.

Town Mayor, Brenda Lyerly, spoke to the audience and thanked Mrs. Wold for her contribution to Banner Elk.  She expressed hope that her gift would encourage others to step forward and fund the Historic School project.

Also speaking was former school teacher Gail Draughon.  She charmed the crowd with a history of the Banner Elk School, including details about the initial decision to build the school, and brought to life the memories of many teachers who taught in the historic school.

Elaine Wold stood behind the elk statue, which was purchased for the town by herself with her late husband Dr. Keith Wold in 2002.  She smiled while town manger Rick Owen’s son Hampton handed her the official golden shovel.  After the groundbreaking guests enjoyed a reception held inside the historic school.

For more information on the historic Banner Elk school visit



Former school teacher Gail Draughon spoke.


Hampton Owen, Rick Owen, Brenda Lyerly, Don Baker and Elaine Wold during the ceremonial groundbreaking.


Elaine Wold in front with Rick Owen, Brenda Lyerly and Don Baker in back. Photo by Jim Swinkola


Rick Owen, Brenda Lyerly, Don Baker and Elaine Wold during the ceremonial groundbreaking.

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