The Ashe County Arts Council is looking forward to a busy and productive New Year with events in January and February. Event information, registration and tickets may be found at www.ashecountyarts.org under the events tab on the homepage.

The annual Martin Luther King Day Celebration will take place online this year on Monday, Jan. 18 at 7 p.m. The online event will feature readings, stories and music. The special guest will be North Carolina storyteller Donna Washington presenting her one woman show, Chairs in Trees. This event is free and open to the public. To receive the Zoom link please register at www.ashecountyarts.org.

The Arts Council will be presenting a virtual concert with John McCutcheon on Thursday, Feb. 4 at 7:30 pm. The concert will be streamed in partnership with other arts organizations on the East Coast. The concert entitled “Roots and Wings: How Traditional Music is the Foundation of All My Music will be blend of traditional songs and original music and songs by McCutcheon. “I came South in 1972 to find old time banjo players. And I met loads of them and through them I met fiddlers, singers, storytellers, writers and a host of characters that lived through amazing times and evens. All that together informed how I think about music and its relation to community life. It not only taught me a truckload of instruments and songs, it taught me how to tell a story, how to write a song, how to make music mean something.” General admission is $20 per individual with ticketing options for households and students. Tickets may be purchased at www.ashecountyarts.org.

On Saturday, Jan. 16, broadcasting live from the stage of the Ashe Civic Center, the Gary Poe Bluegrass and Old Time Radio show will host local musicians Steve Lewis, Josh Scott, Eric and Brandon Hardin. Folks can listen live to 580am/93.5fm WKSK or online at www.580wksk.com. Join us on Saturday, Jan. 16 starting a “little after 11 a.m.” Due to COVID-19, the radio show will not be open to the public at the Civic Center. For more information please call (336) 846-2787.

The Gallery of the Ashe Arts Center will display the new exhibit Stay at Home featuring artwork that focusing on homes and interiors. Artists were challenged to create artwork of what they saw around them as they stayed at home. The exhibit will feature more than 20 local and regional artists. The exhibit will be on display until Feb. 6.

Arts Council announces the 2021 Jane Lonon Legacy Grant will have online applications available on Jan. 25. The mission of the Jane Lonon Legacy Grant is to support projects that feature the fine arts, performing arts or heritage arts of the Appalachians in Ashe County. In 2021, a $2,500 grant will be awarded to a project that fulfills that mission. For more information please call (336) 846-2787.

As a result of pandemic, the Ashe County Arts Council is planning and implementing events and activities both in person and online in a much shorter timeframe. The events and activities will be shared on our website and our social media. Bookmark www.ashecountyarts.org or like us on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest information. Call (336) 846-2787 for more information.

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Tom Mayer is the executive editor of Mountain Times Publications, a group of five news newspapers, six websites and one monthly periodical in the High Country of North Carolina.

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