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Fine Arts Theater Hosts Special Showing of Herb and Dorthy on Thursday

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – The Asheville Art Museum invites you to a special film screening of Herb and Dorothy at 7:00 p.m. the Fine Arts Theatre in downtown Asheville on Thursday, October, 29, 2009.

With the tagline: “You don’t have to be a Rockefeller to collect art, “this film tells the extraordinary collecting career of New Yorkers Herb and Dorothy Vogel, a postal clerk and librarian respectively, who managed to build one of the most important contemporary art collections in history — now mainly housed at the National Gallery of Art (NGA). The Vogel Collection at the NGA was the main lender to the Asheville Art Museum’s recent exhibition Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Projects.

At one point over 2,000 pieces of art filled every square inch of their one-bedroom Manhattan apartment. This gem of a film has received numerous awards since it debuted last year; the Museum is pleased to premiere the film in Asheville.

Purchase your tickets in advance with cash, check or credit card by calling 828.253.3227 or get tickets at the Fine Arts Theatre beginning 30 minutes prior to the film with cash only. Tickets are $10 general admission and $8 Museum Members, students and seniors.

After the film, if you find you need your own Christo and Jeanne-Claude work in your home, come by the Museum Shop or visit us online! The Shop has high-quality framed posters signed by Christo and Jeanne-Claude available for purchase! (The artists derive no profit from the sale of these works. The works were donated to raise funds for the Museum’s fine programming to serve the community.)

Western Carolina Presents "Midsummer Night’s Dream Set in 1930s Appalachia

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Care for a serving of Shakespeare, hold the Elizabethan English and add a dash of fiddle and a soft Southern drawl? The department of stage and screen at Western Carolina University will present “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” – a commentary on the absurdity of love – at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 29-31, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 1, at the Fine and Performing Arts Center on the WCU campus.

One of the most often performed of Shakespeare’s comedies, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” weaves multiple storylines: A royal wedding, a group of amateur actors planning the wedding entertainment, the confused affections of four young lovers, and a feuding fairy king and queen whose magical spells cause mayhem. The characters ultimately decide they must have dreamed the chaotic series of events, yet all find themselves changed by the experience.

“Shakespeare has purposely made this all a jumble,” said director Claire Eye, a faculty member in the department of stage and screen. “Shakespeare’s point is that you can’t put logic into who you fall in love with.”

Eye set the play in Depression-era Appalachia because it was a time when people craved laughter, and the play reminds her of qualities of this region. “There’s such a beauty to the music and the people here,” Eye said.

The play’s music, dance, costumes and set will evoke Appalachia, and while the language will be Shakespeare’s original, the pronunciation will be in a Southern dialect – a natural fit because “Shakespeare’s writing is very musical,” Eye said.

The cast includes:

– Titania, queen of the fairies – senior Dayna Damron of Valdosta, Ga.

– Oberon, king of the fairies – junior Jack Watson of Asheville

– Demetrius – senior Jon Coward of Titusville, Fla.

– Lysander – senior Nathanial Mason of Bryson City

– Hermia – junior Christina DeSoto of Charlotte

– Helena – senior Amanda Pisano of Candler

Puck – freshman Peter O’Neal of Raleigh

– Bottom the Weaver – Peter Savage of Asheville, a faculty member in the department of stage and screen

The play is part of the College of Fine and Performing Arts’ Mainstage theater series and recommended for ages 12 and older. Sunday’s showing also is part of the 2009-10 Galaxy of Stars Series.

Tickets cost $20 for the general public, $5 for students and $15 for WCU faculty and staff and people older than 60. To purchase tickets, visit the FAPAC box office or call the box office at (828) 227-2479 for Visa and MasterCard orders. Order tickets for Thursday through Saturday nights here, and Sunday afternoon here. online here.

Maura Michelle Garcia Comes to Diana Wortham Theatre

Friday, October 23rd, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – The Asheville Art Museum is pleased to present a performance of The Little People by MIXED BLOOD WOMAN at Diana Wortham Theatre at 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 10, 2009

MIXED BLOOD WOMAN is a contemporary dance theater company founded by Maura
Michelle Garcia. Garcia performs her original multi-media piece that explores the world of the ancient Cherokee fairies, the Yvwi Tsvsdi or “little people,” and the having, loosing and reclaiming of traditional Cherokee beliefs and a conscious Native identity.

“We’re thrilled to host Maura Michelle Garcia in conjunction with the Museum’s
exhibition of contemporary Cherokee carvers. Maura is a contemporary dancer and
choreographer of Cherokee descent and this is a wonderful opportunity to connect two
different art forms that both relate to the past and continue the dialogue of what it means to be Cherokee today,” says Nancy Sokolove, Asheville Art Museum Adult Programs Manager.

Garcia has recently been awarded a studio residency through the Charolotte Street
Foundation’s Urban Culture Project in Kansas City, MO. Tickets are available at the Diana Wortham Theatre Box Office, by calling 828.257.4530

Grove Park Inn & Spa Teams Up with BMW for Ultimate Test Drive

Monday, October 19th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa invites guests to take the ultimate road trip! For a limited time this fall, participants can take their turn behind the wheel of the Ultimate Driving Machine, while staying at the ultimate mountain retreat. The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa has teamed up with BMW to offer a BMW Blue Ridge Driving Package. As part of the deal, guests will spend an afternoon cruising the Blue Ridge Parkway in a brand new BMW with a full tank of gas – the ultimate test drive.

Guests will receive a $50 Grove Park Inn gift card, breakfast daily and a choice of select BMW models for an extended test drive. Gift cards may be used to prepare a gourmet lunch basket to go at Tastings of Grove Park or add on a luxurious treatment at Grove Park’s world-class spa to experience the ultimate in relaxation.

This year’s selection of cars includes the Z4 Roadster, the 128i Convertible, the 335Ci Convertible, the 750Li, X5d (diesel), the X6 and the MINI Cooper S. Selection of test drive vehicles are subject to change without notice.

The BMW Blue Ridge Driving Package includes:

Two nights of accommodations, breakfast daily, a $50 Grove Park Inn gift card and one three hour BMW test drive.

UNC Asheville to Hold Third Annual Math Literacy Summit

Monday, October 19th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Math skills have the power to change young lives, so argues noted mathematician and University of Arizona professor William Velez. He will tell his own story in a keynote address at UNC Asheville’s Third Annual Math Literacy Summit. The summit, aimed at K-12 teachers, parents and students, will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 24, at UNC Asheville’s Highsmith University Union. The day’s activities will include the talk by Velez as well as a number of workshops. Refreshments and free childcare will be provided. The event is free and open to the public.

The summit will begin with the keynote address by Velez, entitled “Mathematics Changed My Life,” at 10 a.m. In the talk, he will describe his struggle with college mathematics as a student, and his decision to persevere and overcome those challenges. Velez works to promote mathematics and increase the number of mathematics majors among Hispanics and Native Americans. He is one of the founding members of the Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science, and has served as its president.

“If our society is to survive and prosper, we have to produce a mathematically literate society,” Velez said. “I have decided to dedicate the final years of my academic life to convince our students that mathematics is relevant, that it is fascinating, and that students arriving on campus should increase the mathematical content of their course work. It is important that parents, K-12 teachers and university mathematicians understand how critical mathematics is for our students and for our communities.”,/p>

Eight workshops will follow Velez’s talk. The workshops will address credit fundamentals, credit reports and scores, health connections to math and statistics, mart and art, and technology. A special session for parents will also be offered on helping students with math homework. Two workshops on credit will be offered in both English and Spanish.

The event is sponsored by the UNC Asheville Mathematics Department’s Asheville Initiative for Math (AIM) with support from RBC Bank and the AT&T Foundation. AIM’s mission is to promote excellence in math education and universal math literacy in the Asheville region.

City Hosts Business Forum on ARRA Opportunities

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – The City of Asheville is partnering with regional business support agencies to host a forum on the impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) on businesses Thursday, October 15, at the Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College’s Enka campus.

Representatives from various agencies involved in business development will be on hand to provide information on services available to business owners. Participating agencies include: the City of Asheville, Buncombe County, the U.S. Small Business Administration, the A-B Tech Center for Business & Technology Incubation, the Small Business and Technology Development Center, Asheville SCORE, Mountain BizWorks, and the Procurement Technical Assistance Counselor Office, among others.

In addition to providing information throughout most of the day, service providers will take part in two panel discussions. The first panel discussion, “An Overview of the Recovery Act and Accessing Contracting Opportunities,” will take place from 10-11 a.m. followed by “Current Loan Opportunities,” at 1:30-2:30 p.m.

“The city is hosting this event to make sure local businesses understand how to participate in government contracting and can take advantage of any opportunities that become available under the economic stimulus program,” said Brenda Mills, the city’s ARRA project manager. “We also want to make information about other business support services widely available, even those that exist outside of ARRA.”

The event will take place at the A-B Tech Enka campus’s Haynes Conference Center with opening remarks delivered at 9:45 a.m. The forum will close at 3:30 p.m. Attendance is free of charge and open to the public.

For more information, contact Brenda Mills at (828) 259-8050 or [email protected]

Four Additional Early Voting Sites to Open in Asheville

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Additional early voting sites in north, south, east and west Asheville will open October 24 – 31. Sites will be open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. On October 31 only, the sites will be open 8 a.m.-1 p.m. The additional sites will supplement the current downtown Asheville site at 189 College St.

City Council voted to fund the additional sites at its September 8 meeting in order to add more opportunities for the community to participate in the election. The new locations are:

• North Asheville Branch Library, 1030 Merrimon Ave., Asheville, 28804

• South Buncombe Branch Library, 260 Overlook Rd., Asheville, 28803

• City of Asheville – Parks, Recreation & Cultural Arts Recreation Office in east Asheville, 72 Gashes Creek Rd., Asheville, 28805

• West Asheville Branch Library, 942 Haywood Rd., Asheville, 28806

All registered voters are eligible to vote during this time. Same day registration will be available at all early voting sites for residents who are not registered. Same day registration allows residents to register and vote on the same day.

For election information, call Buncombe County Election Services at 250-4200 or visit http://www.buncombecounty.org/governing/depts/election/.

Grove Park Adds New Event to National Gingerbread Competition

Monday, October 12th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Celebrate the National Gingerbread House Competition at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa with a new “Stories of Gingerbread” tour for 2009. Each year, gingerbread artists from around the country compete in the annual competition. Now for the first time, guests will be taken behind the scenes of the popular holiday event to learn how the intricate homes are constructed, what materials were used in the designs, and other special tidbits that make the National Gingerbread House Competition a treat for people of all ages.

Guests who sign up for the “Stories of Gingerbread” tour will receive a special, commemorative lapel pin that is sure to become a collector’s item. “Stories of Gingerbread” tours will be held at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The cost for the special tour is $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12. With these fanciful entries on display throughout the resort, guests will enjoy sugar and spice and everything nice! The “Stories of Gingerbread” tours begin November 23, 2009. For more information or to reserve a spot, call 828-252-2711, ext. 409

UNC Asheville Athletics & Malaprop’s to Host Roy Williams Book Signing

Monday, October 12th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café and the UNC Asheville Athletics Department will present a book signing with UNC Tar Heels Men’s Basketball Coach Roy Williams.

Coach Williams will be at UNC Asheville’s Justice Center on Sunday, Decemeber 13th from 1:30-2:30 to promote his new book HARD WORK: A Life On and Off the Court.

Malaprop’s is donating a portion of the sales to the UNC Asheville Student-Athlete Scholarship Fund. The book-signing is first come, first served, and only for those with a Malaprop’s “Hard Work” receipt. HARD WORK can be pre-ordered from Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café in downtown Asheville. Books can also be purchased at the Justice Center on Dec. 13.

For more information, you can contact: Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café, 55 Haywood St., Asheville, N.C., 28801 at (828)254-6734.

Biltmore Celebrates Annual Christmas Event, Nov. 6 – Jan. 2

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – One hundred fourteen years ago this Christmas Eve, George Washington Vanderbilt first opened Biltmore House to family and friends. Vanderbilt’s legacy for legendary hospitality lives on today and especially during the holiday season when Biltmore House is elaborately decorated for Christmas, offering guests a glimpse of what it may have been like to be one of his guests during that special holiday season in 1895.

Known for being one of the largest holiday displays in the Southeast, Biltmore House and the surrounding 8,000 acres of the estate will celebrate its annual Christmas at Biltmore, Nov. 6, 2009, through Jan. 2, 2010. For ticket and booking information, call 877-BILTMORE or visit www.biltmore.com.

As in years past, the event will feature 100 decorated Christmas trees; hundreds of wreaths and bows; hundreds of poinsettias; 30,000 lights in the house with another 150,000 lights used around the estate; 10,000 feet of fresh garland; and more than 25,000 ornaments. Biltmore House’s holiday centerpiece, a 34-foot Fraser fir, spends the holidays in the 72-foot high Banquet Hall, adorned with lights and surrounded by hundreds of brightly packaged gift boxes. The Biltmore House front lawn will glow with a lighted 55-foot Norway spruce, surrounded by eight “islands” of smaller lighted trees and nursery shrubs.

Christmas at Biltmore

Christmas at Biltmore during the daytime includes tours of Biltmore House, the Gardens, the Winery with complimentary wine tasting, River Bend Farm and Barnyard. Inside Biltmore House, the Banquet Hall organ will serenade guests with music of the season.

Candlelight Christmas Evenings

Candlelight Christmas Evenings, where luminaries and a brilliant display of twinkling lights on the Front Lawn set the tone for tours of Biltmore House, requires separate entry. New this year will be ballroom dancers in vintage costume gliding across the floor in the Winter Garden. A story teller will regale visitors with readings from traditional holiday tales such as “The Little Match Girl,” “The Gift of the Magi” and Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Choirs will perform European carols, with musicians providing seasonal music.

Get Inspired by Biltmore Decor

The restoration and preservation of the magnificent Louis XV Suite in Biltmore House has inspired this year’s holiday decor theme. Guests who come to Biltmore before diving into their own holiday decorating can’t help but pick up tips and ideas. In fact, Biltmore staff will give free holiday seminars on how to create Vanderbilt-inspired decorations for their own homes. Reservations for the seminars are not required; however, space may be limited so guests should arrive early. Here is the seminar schedule:

– Deck the Halls, daily, Nov. 6-22: Biltmore’s Floral Displays staff will give decorating tips for the home. 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the Biltmore House Library Den.

– Centerpieces for Holiday Entertaining, daily, Nov. 6-Jan. 2: 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. at A Gardener’s Place in the Conservatory.

– Decorating a Christmas Wreath, daily, Nov. 6-Jan. 2: Learn how to turn an ordinary silk Christmas wreath into an elegant and interesting design. 1 and 3 p.m. at A Gardener’s Place in the Conservatory.

– Red Wine and Chocolate, daily, Nov. 6-Jan. 2: Discover why chocolate and red wine is a match made in heaven by pairing Biltmore Estate wine with several varieties of chocolate. 2, 3, 4 and 6 p.m. at the Winery.

Give the Gift of a Memory

Christmas at Biltmore is the perfect gift that families can give themselves. With the estate transformed into a magical wonderland, families will create memories to last a lifetime. “Family” is an unofficial theme at Biltmore this year since one of four rooms that opened to the public in Biltmore House for the first time was where two generations of the Vanderbilt family were actually born.

Across Biltmore

Holiday hospitality extends across the entire estate. Biltmore Winery offers self-guided tours and complimentary wine tastings. Santa Claus will visit River Bend Barn on Saturdays, Nov. 7-Dec. 20. Guests may enjoy a festive meal at Bistro, Deerpark Restaurant, Stable Cafe or The Dining Room at Inn on Biltmore Estate. Guests looking to extend their stay at Biltmore, the four-star Inn offers several packages for holidays, including special New Year’s Eve packages.

Biltmore boasts retail shops, all perfect for holiday gift shopping. Other activities include taking a cozy horse and carriage ride (blankets provided) and exploring acres of landscaped gardens.