During the months of March and April, the Hiddenite Arts and Heritage Center’s Emerging Artists Wall exhibit space will feature paintings by Betty Flowers of Catawba County. The exhibit will be on display at the center’s Lucas Mansion, 316 Hiddenite Church Road.

Located on the third floor of the Lucas Mansion, all Emerging Artists Wall exhibits are free and open to the public Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Flowers was born and raised in Alexander County and has spent most of her adult life in Catawba County. She is a widow with two children and they encouraged her to pursue her passion to paint. Living in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Flowers said she draws inspiration from natural surroundings.

Flowers expresses her art in oil and acrylic on canvas, using texture and color to evoke peaceful scenes.

“I believe that my ability to create art is a God-given talent,” she said. “I feel extremely blessed to be given the ability and opportunity to express myself and bring joy to others through my paintings.”

Artists sought for regional exhibit and competition

The Adult Division of the Hiddenite Arts and Heritage Center’s Regional Artist Exhibit and Competition will be featured in the Lucas Mansion’s gallery during April.

The Regional Artist Exhibit and Competition is open to all adult artists, including college students through senior adult. The deadline for entry is March 28 by 4 p.m. Work submitted after the designated date and time will not be accepted for the competition. All work should be submitted to the Lucas Mansion, 316 Hiddenite Church Road, Hiddenite.

Interested artists are encouraged to contact the center at 828-632-6966 to receive entry forms, which are also available online at www.hiddenitearts.org or at the Lucas Mansion.

Due to the expansion of the series, each participant can submit a maximum of two pieces. Artists are asked to submit current works completed between April 2018 to March 2019 and are encouraged to designate a priority for presentation of each piece in the event that exhibit space is limited.

Categories are:

Adult painting (oil and acrylic);

Adult watercolor;

Adult drawing (colored pencil, pastels, charcoal, pencil, pen and ink);

Adult other (mixed media, collage, prints and photography);

Adult 3-Dimensional (pottery and sculpture);

Adult quilting (quilts, wall hangings, clothing, etc.).

Last year’s first-place winners in the adult division are encouraged to exhibit but will not be eligible to win again in the same category.

All entries must have a Hiddenite Arts and Heritage entry form attached to the back of the work, and each piece must have a sturdy device suitable for hanging. All works on paper, etc. must be matted or mounted for exhibit. Any framed work must be wired for hanging. Display pedestals for three-dimensional works will be provided. Where applicable, 3-D works may be displayed on mantles or existing furniture. Any special arrangements regarding display should be discussed with the gallery curator prior to entry. If a work falls due to a poor hanging device, the work will not be re-hung and will not be eligible for judging.

All competition entries will be viewed by a qualified judge who will select one first-place winner in each category; additional awards may be given at the judge’s discretion. An award will be given to each first-place winner. Ribbons will be awarded to first place and honorable mention entries.

A meet the artists’ reception and awards ceremony will be held April 7 in honor of all adult division participants. It will be held at the Lucas Mansion Gallery from 3-4:30 p.m. Awards will be announced at 3:30 p.m. Light refreshments will be served and the event is free and open to the public.

Student artists to be honored in March

During March, the Hiddenite Center’s Arts and Heritage Center’s Lucas Mansion Gallery will showcase the talent of student artists from across the region. The youth division of the center’s annual Regional Artist Exhibit and Competition, which was open to entries from students in grades K-12, features diverse points of view in a wide variety of mediums.

The public is invited to honor these students during a meet the artists’ reception and awards ceremony Sunday from 3-4:30 p.m. in the Lucas Mansion Gallery. Awards will be announced at 3:30 p.m. Light refreshments will be served and the event is free and open to the public.

Enrollment open for ballroom dance class

On March 11, the Hiddenite Arts and Heritage Center will begin a new session of ballroom dance classes, featuring dance instructor Dirk Myers II. This eight-week class series will offer instruction in ballroom dance steps, particularly the Texas Two-Step and the Cha-Cha that will help students learn to dance like a star.

Classes are on Mondays from 6:30 to 7:20 p.m. at the Hiddenite Center’s Educational Complex, 70 Hiddenite Church Road. The cost for the full eight-week session is $100 for the public and $95 for Hiddenite Center members and is payable at the beginning of the first class.

The class is open to individuals; however to aid instruction, couples are encouraged.

To register call 828-632-6966.

Alexander Library seeking artists for ‘Found, Art of Community’

The Alexander County Library is seeking artists to participate in a new group exhibition “Found, Art of Community.” The exhibit, which will be on display at the main library during May and June, is open to all artists (local, regional and statewide) and all mediums.

Miranda Burgin is serving as the curator in partnership with the library.

This exhibit will allow participating artists to broadly interpret the theme.

“Found explores the ways in which we find, create, build and share community,” Burgin said. “Community can be found in self-expression, in shared experiences, in objects others leave behind and in places you least expect it.

“At its core, this exhibit is about the people, places, moments and movements that give us a sense of belonging – to ourselves, each other, to the magic of creativity, to something greater than we can imagine."

From painted canvas to kiln, found object installation to paper collage, sculpture and photography, this multimedia exhibit encourages and celebrates the diverse artistic expression.

“In Found, we create a space for art to do what art does best – tell stories, ask questions, inspire new ideas and uplift the human spirit through the art of community,” she added.

Art entries should be delivered to the Alexander County Library, 77 First Ave. SW, Taylorsville, between April 22 and April 30 during regular library hours, which are Monday and Thursday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

For full guidelines or to confirm participation, artists can email Burgin at mirandaburgin@gmail.com or call the library director, Laura Crooks at 828-632-4058.

RockyFest scheduled for April 13

RockyFest 2019, which will feature live music, food, children’s activities, free rock climbing and rappelling sessions, trail races and more, is scheduled April 13 at Rocky Face Park, 3451 Rocky Face Church Road, Hiddenite.

The event begins with the RockyFest Trail Races at 8 a.m. with distances of four, five, nine or 13.5 miles.

The race begins at the multipurpose building. Alexander County residents and county employees (either active or retired) and all emergency service personnel, military and teachers can participate for free. For others, registration is $25 by April 1. T-shirts are not included in the registration fee. T-shirts are an additional $10, with no guarantee of a race shirt after April 1. Online registration is available for paid participants but free registrants should download the application, complete it and submit it via mail, email or in person.

Following the trail races, free rock climbing and rappelling sessions will be offered from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. with 75 openings available. Registration can be completed online at www.rockyfacepark.com/rockyfest on a first-come,first-serve basis.

The rest of the festivities begin at 10 a.m. and last until 4 p.m. Activities will include live music, inflatables for children, arts and crafts vendors, a wide variety of food and more. There are four inflatables including a dual-lane slide, a fire station combo, a jousting ring and a basketball shootout game.

Live music will be performed on stage under the tent from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bands include The Sugar Loaf Ramblers, Todd McCloud and Charlie Carpenter, The Ya Yas, Wood Family Tradition and Shelby Rae Moore. The music is a mixture of bluegrass, Americana, blues, country and more.

The main food vendors that have confirmed plans include: Apple City BBQ, Wingz on Wheelz, Wilson’s Weenie Wagon and Snack Wagon Concessions. Other food vendors are Granny’s Old Fashioned Doughnuts, the Vashti Ice cream Man and Sunset Slush for the Troops.

Applications are currently being accepted for the arts/crafts, commercial and non-profit vendors. Visit www.rockyfacepark.com/rockyfest, click on the vendor application and complete the online form. Fees are $30 for arts/crafts vendors, $40 for commercial and $10 for non-profits for a 10X10 space. Electricity is an additional $10.

For more information contact Alisha Stamey at astamey@alexandercountync.gov or 828-632-1308 or visit www.rockyfacepark.com/rockyfest.

Get today’s top stories right in your inbox. Sign up for our daily newsletter.