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Arts & Entertainment

The 2011 Blue Ridge Gospel Music Weekend was held last weekend at Holly Springs Baptist Church with such notable guests as Blue Ridge group, Rob Mills Band, Balsam Range, Aaron Wilburn, Mountain Faith and Archie Watkins and Smoky Mountain Reunion. The church has hosted the event the past 7 years, as part of the limited Blue Ridge tour.

On Saturday, Aaron Wilburn wowed the crowd with his usual humorous and refreshing, perspective on life.

Next, Mountain Faith, a local gospel group from Sylva headed by Sam McMahan performed a number of favorites. Every summer the group hosts the Old Mater Farm bluegrass concert series on their farm.


Looking for some fun and fellowship this Independence Day Weekend? The Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts has just the ticket with four days of fantastic Southern Gospel music beginning Friday, July 1. All “Singing in the Smokies” performances begin at 7 p.m., excluding the July 4 show, which begins at 1 p.m. Tickets are $20 per show for adults, and children ages six and under are $10.

The Friday, July 1 “Singing in the Smokies” show will feature acclaimed Southern Gospel group, The Triumphant Quartet, along with The Hayes Family. This performance will also star the award-winning Inspirations, who have sold well over a million records and charted more than 60 hit songs.

The Saturday, July 2 performance will feature The Blackwood Brothers Quartet, one of the best known quartets in the history of gospel music, along with the enduring Whisnants, and The Inspirations.


The classic musical comedy “Guys and Dolls” delivered an evening of singing, dancing and a whole lot of laughs to theatre-goers this past weekend.

The Overlook Theatre Company presented the production at the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts and was sponsored by Teen Challenge of the Smokies.



The Smoky Mountain Firecracker Fest will be held Friday and Saturday, July 1 and 2, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Franklin Plaza. This event is a free juried show featuring some of the southeast’s most unique arts and crafts which include fiber art, Native American art and flutes, jellies and baskets, hand-carved knives, jewelry and magnetic therapy jewelry, soaps and lotions, honey, scrolled wood, yard art, recycled bottle lights, watercolor paintings, pottery, spinning and so much more.

Three-time world champion tree carver R.K. Harnihan or “Tree” will be demonstrating at the show. He has been cutting figures out of wood for 43 years. His work includes a four-story, 48-ton sculpture of Sir Walter Raleigh, carved from a 500-year-old cypress that stands on the site of The Lost Colony in Manteo. He has duplicated the four presidential faces of Mt. Rushmore from a 38-ton trunk of a 250- year old oak that sits in the West Park Mall in Charlotte.


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