Archive for January, 2012

Local Artist Exhibits New Work at The N.C. Arboretum

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – New works by Susan Lingg, an artist based in Cullowhee, North Carolina, will be on display at The North Carolina Arboretum. Opening January 24, Within and Around the Ancients will depict the unique mountain landscapes of the Southern Appalachians.

Using watercolors, poured inks, and handmade paper, Lingg portrays the unique granite exposures of the mountains of the region, as well as native flora. Described as realism through an artist’s eye, her work captures and celebrates a passing moment.

A registered artist with Handmade in America, Lingg has been exhibiting her work since 1982. She is a member of the Jackson County Visual Arts Council, the North Carolina Watercolor Society, and Dogwood Crafters. Lingg is also an instructor in watercolor and handmade paper.

The exhibit will be on display at the Education Center of the Arboretum through April 8. For more information, please call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

Rarely Seen Treasures Featured in New Exhibition at Biltmore

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – “The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad” grand opening set for April 7, 2012. When a new exhibition of rarely displayed treasures collected by the Vanderbilt family opens this spring, visitors to Biltmore will have the opportunity to learn more about the intriguing family who lived in Biltmore House, America’s Largest Home, at the turn of the 20th century.

Through archival letters, documents, personal items and exotic treasures, “The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad” explores the personalities of George and Edith Vanderbilt, and their only child, Cornelia. The exhibition opens April 7, 2012, in Antler Hill Village at Biltmore.

Starting with the Vanderbilt family tree, dating back to industrialist Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, George Vanderbilt’s grandfather, visitors will take in details and descriptions of the Vanderbilt courtship and wedding; Cornelia’s birth; grand parties at Biltmore House; and travels through Europe and the Far East. Milestones are portrayed through archival photos, many of the pictures taken by Edith Vanderbilt, an avid student of photography. The fascinating story of the fateful decision that saved the Vanderbilts from perishing on Titanic is also told in this exhibition.

Some of the family’s cherished possessions to be displayed include:

• An extraordinary collection of Samurai armor and weapons and an intricate Cartier vanity and lipstick case.

• A 12-sided Tiffany & Co. coffee pot given to George and Edith Vanderbilt by President Theodore Roosevelt’s sister, Anna Roosevelt Cowles, for their 1898 wedding.

• The Holland House books, a set of gilded volumes collected originally at England’s Holland House, a gathering place for more than 200 years of some of Britain’s most famous thinkers, leaders and philosophers. The books contain letters, prints, etchings and drawings spanning British history from the mid-1500s through the late 19th century, including correspondence from Queen Elizabeth I, Napoleon, Lafayette and Lord Byron.

Entry into the exhibition is included in estate admission. For more information, please visit www.biltmore.com.

About Biltmore
Located in Asheville, North Carolina, Biltmore was the vision of George W. Vanderbilt. Designed by Richard Morris Hunt, America’s largest home is a 250-room French Renaissance chateau, exhibiting the Vanderbilt family’s original collection of furnishings, art and antiques. Biltmore estate encompasses more than 8,000 acres including renowned gardens designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the father of American landscape architecture. Today, Biltmore has grown to include Antler Hill Village, which features the award-winning Winery and Antler Hill Farm; the four-star Inn on Biltmore Estate; Equestrian Center; numerous restaurants; event and meeting venues; Biltmore For Your Home, the company’s licensed products division; and Biltmore Inspirations, Biltmore’s home party business. To learn more about Biltmore, go to www.biltmore.com or call 877-BILTMORE.

UNCA Super Saturday Classes for Grades 3-8 Begin March 17

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – Registration is now open for UNC Asheville’s Super Saturday program for creative, highly motivated and/or academically gifted students in grades 3-8. Classes begin on March 17, with topics including chess, photography, wildlife exploration, creative writing, foreign language, theatre, and martial arts. More than 12,000 children from across Western North Carolina have explored their special interests through hands-on learning at Super Saturdays on the UNC Asheville campus.

The 22 courses offered range from “Spanish for Beginners” and “Sketchbooking,” to “Art in Science, Science in Art” and “Improv for the Theatre.” Budding scientists can explore plants, insects, and bones in “Icky Sticky Fun Biology,” or lasers and holograms in “Physics is Phun.” “World of Wildlife” and “Movie Making and Animation” are also likely to be popular.

Super Saturday classes are taught by UNC Asheville faculty members, upper-level students, experienced artists and other professionals.

Super Saturday classes meet from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays from March 17-April 28. The mail-in registration deadline is March 9 and online registration closes March 11. Tuition is $69 for each six-week course. A limited number of need-based scholarships are available.

For more information or to register, call UNC Asheville’s Cultural Events and Special Academic Programs at 828.251.6558 or visit the Super Saturday web page.

Diana Wortham Theatre Presents The Importance of Being Earnest

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – Diana Wortham Theatre presents The Importance of Being Earnest. Crammed full of larger-than-life characters and with comic timing as sharp as Wilde’s witticisms, Aquila’s Earnest is unmistakable fun. This delightful and tantalizing production overflows with humor, elegance, romantic comedy, and insights into the flamboyant lifestyle of the fashionable British upper classes — as Wilde’s Algernon admits, “If I am occasionally over dressed, I make up for it by being always immensely over educated.” Count on creative staging and the beautiful use of physical humor for over-the-top merriment.


Tickets: Regular $35, Student $30, Child $12
Groups of 10-19: $32 each
Groups of 20 or more: $30 each

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Lush Life Productions Presents The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre at The Vault

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Asheville NC – Lush Life Productions, a local publicity and event promotions company is hosting Asheville‘s first St. Valentine’s Day Massacre Party at the Rankin Vault and Cocktail Lounge in Downtown Asheville. The party is loosely themed on the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre in 1929 Chicago, a prohibition-era conflict between two powerful gangs including Al Capone.

1920’s era clothing and mobster attire is strongly recommended. The party gets started at 8pm and goes late into the night with DJ Lorruh spinning period music with a contemporary twist.

What: St. Valentine’s Day Massacre Party

Where: Rankin Vault and Cocktail Lounge; 7 Rankin Avenue

When: February 14, 2012, 8pm

Dress code: Think Al Capone

Backyard Naturalists After School Program

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – The Highlands Biological Foundation has received a $25,000 grant from the Eckerd Family Foundation to create “Backyard Naturalists,” an after-school program designed to inspire a lifelong appreciation of the natural world through science, art and technology.  The program is created in partnership with Meet Your Neighbours, an international photographic initiative designed to reveal the wildlife living amongst us in an extraordinary way, and will draw upon the educational resources of the Highlands Nature Center.   The Pilot program will begin on March 19, 2012 in Highlands, NC.

Backyard Naturalists participants will learn the essentials of how to be an amateur naturalist. The program will include eight weeks of lessons, one afternoon per week, structured to promote a better appreciation and understanding of the natural world by nurturing creativity and independent observation skills.  Study topics will include learning about plants and animals, community interactions between species, nature journaling, illustration and a nature photography workshop. Using this knowledge, the students will work together to develop a wiki, a website that is collaboratively developed by a community of users, which allows them to freely add content, edit and become active participants of the website rather than just visitors. After the initial pilot program is launched in Highlands, NC we will incorporate images produced by other Meet Your Neighbours photographers around the world into the wiki and encourage the development of similar Backyard Naturalists programs in their own communities. In this way technology becomes a tool and an asset used to put students in touch with the natural world around them in ways that only beautiful close-up photography can provide. It is our hope that Backyard Naturalists will have a lasting, positive impact on the lives of our participants and encourage them to get outside and explore the natural world that is as close as their own backyards.

For over 84 years the mission of the Highlands Biological Station and Foundation has been to foster education and research based on the rich natural heritage of the Highlands Plateau.  To become a part of the Highlands Biological Foundation and assist in this mission visit Highlandsbiological.org   To learn more about Backyard Naturalists or to sign up please visit www.backyardnaturalists.com or, or call (828) 526-2221.  To learn more about Meet Your Neighbours, visit www.meetyourneighbours.net

Grady the Groundhog to Appear February 2 at Chimney Rock

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – Grady the Groundhog, the Chimney Rock Park’s live mascot, will be making his own prediction at Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park when he awakens from his winter slumber at 10:30 a.m. on February 2. A brief educational program will precede the shadow sighting on the Meadows, followed by a one-hour guided hike at 11:15 a.m. If Grady sees his shadow, it means we have six more weeks of winter weather ahead—but if not, then spring is around the corner! Cast your vote on whether he’ll see his shadow at chimneyrockpark.com. Winter admission rates are $9/adult, $4/youth (ages 6-15) and free for kids under 6. During February, Grady’s Kids Club memberships are on sale for only $8.

“Kids can’t get enough of Grady when they get to pet him. They love Grady the Groundhog,” said Matt Popowski, PR & Events Coordinator at Chimney Rock. “We hope they leave with a better understanding of and appreciation for these woodland critters. It’s like our own Groundhog Awareness Day.”

Grady’s Groundhog Day. Join Emily Walker, Chimney Rock’s Education Specialist, near the Classroom on the Meadows for a nature program on the life of groundhogs and the Groundhog Day tradition. Then eagerly watch as Grady emerges and either does—or doesn’t—see his shadow. Afterward, a Park trail guide will lead a one-hour guided hike starting at 11:15 a.m. at Cliff Dwellers Gifts. This is the fourth year of Chimney Rock’s annual Groundhog Day event, but it’s only the second with Grady as the star of the show. The official Groundhog Day can be traced back to 1886 in Punxsutawney, Pa. For more information on Chimney Rock’s hands-on education programs for schools, homeschoolers and scouts, as well as summer camps, visit www.chimneyrockpark.com/education.

Vote Online on Grady’s Shadow.  Will Grady give the same prediction as Punxsutawney Phil? Or will he daringly give his own prediction about winter’s claim on the weather? Cast your vote online whether you think Grady will see his shadow at chimneyrockpark.com. Then join us for the event or check back on our website on February 2 to see who guessed correctly.

Grady’s Animal Discovery Den. Adjacent to the Great Woodland Adventure—a popular TRACK Trail hike for kids—is Grady’s Animal Discovery Den, located on the Meadows. This is home to a handful of live animal habitats, including snakes, turtles, an opossum and Grady the Groundhog. These critters are stars in some of the Park’s education programs for schools, homeschoolers and scouts. A lifelike mural created by local artist Clive Haynes depicts the natural Hickory Nut Gorge environment and its native animals with hands-on displays. Kids and adults are encouraged to study and touch the furs of skunk, opossum and groundhog. Also on display for viewing are a snake skin, deer skull and two turtle shells from a small Common Snapping Turtle and the N.C. state reptile, an Eastern Box Turtle.

Grady’s Kids Club Special.  To celebrate Grady’s special day, Chimney Rock is offering a discount on memberships to Grady’s Kids Club, the Annual Pass for youth, for $8 during February. For only $0.67 a month, kids ages 6-15 get unlimited visits to the Park for an entire year, plus discounts on food, souvenirs and activities in the Park and special deals at area attractions. Buy your kid’s pass online, call 800-277-9611 or buy the pass at the Ticket Plaza on your visit to the Park during February 1-29, 2012.

About Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park is a developing international outdoor destination located 25 miles southeast of Asheville on Highway 64/74A in Chimney Rock, N.C. It is recognized as one of the Southeast’s most iconic sites and popular travel destinations. The Park’s 535-million-year-old monolith called Chimney Rock offers guests 75-mile panoramic views of Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake Lure. Hickory Nut Gorge, one of the state’s most significant centers of biodiversity, is home to 36 rare plant species and 14 rare animal species, and the second highest waterfall of its kind in the eastern United States. A destination for travel groups, weddings and special events, the Park also hosts innovative educational programs for schools, homeschoolers, scouts and summer camps. Visit Chimney Rock’s website at chimneyrockpark.com. More information on current Capital Improvement projects at chimneyrockpark.com/progress or by calling 800-277-9611.

Discover More About Our Climate at A-B Tech

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – A-B Tech’s Institute for Climate Education is offering a series of winter non-credit Continuing Education classes on subjects ranging from weather lore to the history of meteorology.

“Weather Lore MythBusters” will be offered from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 3 on the College’s Asheville campus and will investigate popular sayings that have been used for centuries to help forecast coming weather events.

“There is a vast collection of proverbs and rhymes that have been passed from generation to generation to guide farmers, sailors, herdsman and others on how to predict the weather,” said Pamela McCown, Coordinator of the Institute for Climate Education. “We’ll put weather lore to the test, covering how some of the popular sayings started, and if they are a real indication of what to expect in the near future.”

“Mountain Weather and Climate” will focus on Western North Carolina’s microclimates. Students will learn about the major weather patterns that influence the region, as well as how the mountains impact the weather in specific locations causing microclimates. The class will also recap historic and extreme weather events including the 1993 blizzard and winters of 2009 and 2010. The course is offered from 6 to 8 p.m. Feb. 16, 23 and March 1.

Other courses offered this winter include Aviation Weather Safety and History of Meteorology, Weather Lore and How the Weather Has Affected Historical Events. Visit the Institute’s webpage for more information.

Understanding Your Credit in 2012

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – A-B Tech’s Small Business Center, Minority Enterprise Development Week, Inc. and the City of Asheville is sponsoring a free workshop on Understanding Your Credit in 2012 from 10 a.m. to noon Jan. 31 in room 2046 of the Small Business Center at the Enka site. Register by Jan. 27 with James Lee, Minority Business Coordinator, at [email protected] or by calling 232-4566.

Tile Work by Guastavino Lecture at UNC Asheville

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

photo of Guastavino tiled staicase at Carnegie Mellon UniversityASHEVILLE NC – The Rafael Guastavino family – responsible for remarkable tile work at architectural landmarks in Asheville and across the nation – will be the subject of a lecture at UNC Asheville by John Ochsendorf of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.). The lecture, “Guastavino Vaulting: From Barcelona to Black Mountain,” will take place at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1, in UNC Asheville’s Owen Hall, in the third floor conference room. This event is free and open to the public.

photo of John OchsendorfOchsendorf is the author of “Guastavino Vaulting: The Art of Structural Tile” (2010, Princeton Architectural Press), a study of the work of the father and son team of Spanish immigrants who patented a technique of self-supporting tile arches and vaults. The Guastavinos were responsible for the world-famous tile work in New York City’s Grand Central Station and Carnegie Hall, Asheville’s Biltmore Estate and Basilica of St. Lawrence, and hundreds of other landmark buildings across the U.S.

Ochsendorf is associate professor of Architecture at M.I.T, where he conducts research on architectural construction, sustainable design and archaeology. He has been awarded a MacArthur Fellowship from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, as well as a Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome.

This lecture is sponsored by the UNC Asheville Art Department, the Meet the Maker Series, and the NEH Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Humanities. For more information, contact the Art Department at 828.251.6559.