WEST JEFFERSON — On April 21, the Ashe County Board of Commissioners in partnership with Generations Ashe, held the 37th annual Volunteer Awards in the form of a drive-thru event.
This is the second year in a row that the ceremony has been held as a drive-thru. In previous years, the awards ceremony would be held in the auditorium of Ashe County High School with a full reception. However, with the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the organizers decided that, after the success last year, the event would once again be held as a drive-thru.
The event came to fruition at 6 p.m. on the grounds of Generations Ashe with parking for volunteers, live music from the JAM kids and awards being presented by the Board of Commissioners Chair Todd McNeill, Vice Chair William Sands, Chuck Olive and Jonathan Jordan.
Nominations are made by volunteer coordinators and organizations with the nominations stating how many hours an individual has served and what people volunteered for.
General winners were directed through the front awning of the building and were gifted with packs of delicious, hand-made cheese provided by Ashe County Cheese.
The main winners were given plaques and gift baskets, also provided by Ashe County Cheese.
Hundreds of volunteers drove through the event and were given their awards by the commissioners.
Overall winners were placed into categories including individual, family, groups, youth, senior, perseverance in volunteerism, faith based, corporate/business, national service and director of volunteers.
These winners were:
- Individual — Jon Parker
- Family — The Taylor Family
- Group/Team — The Ashe Co. Heart Association
- Youth — Lilliana Mayberry
- Senior — Patricia “Trish” Edwards
- Perseverance In Volunteerism — Sally Blevins
- Faith Based — Larry Lewis
- Corporate/Business — Riverview Community Center
- National Service — Jessie Dixon
- Director of Volunteers — Sherry Lambert
Organizer Judy Current said she believes the awards will once again take place in banquet form in future years.