Palustris Festival Announces Tentative Schedule
The working schedule for next winter's Palustris Festival has begun to fill up with a remarkable variety of events showcasing the performing, literary and visual arts in Moore County.
Slated to run from March 25-28, the festival is drawing attention from a wide range of arts groups and institutions.
Currently there are more than 60 events in place from morning to night on each of the days of the festival, with final preparations being made for about a dozen more.
The opening night concert of the Palustris Festival highlights a performance by the Fayetteville Symphony, under the leadership of Fouad Fakhouri, music director and conductor.
The more than 80 members of the orchestra include a number of Moore County residents, as well as musicians from all over North Carolina, some from South Carolina and beyond.
At the other end of the musical sphere, an internationally known folk singer, Tift Merritt, is a headliner at the Palustris Festival.
This talented woman, who says Emmy Lou Harris is one of her greatest inspirations, recently appeared at the 50th Newport Folk Festival. A writer of songs, a photographer and world traveler, she will bring her own special music to the stage of Robert E. Lee auditorium at Pinecrest High School on Saturday evening, March 27.
An award-winning author with North Carolina roots, Ron Rash, is being presented by a consortium of the Moore County libraries at a luncheon and community read event Friday, March 26. Rash's recent novel, "Serena," was named best book of the year in 2008 by more than a dozen national publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, The Chicago Tribune and Miami Herald.
A few of the choices that face festival-goers are illustrated by the three outstanding and totally differing presentations on the Friday evening schedule.
An "Affair of the Arts" dinner dance, featuring Tom Bernett's Swing Street Band will take place at the Fair Barn; a performance of the Boulder Acoustic Society with Joe Craven will be one of the several programs spread out during the four-day period at the Rooster's Wife in Aberdeen; and a reprise performance of "A Thousand Things Time Will Never Let Us Say" will be given at the Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities.
A sampling of the events that will celebrate the arts in Moore County during the last week in March 2010 include daily walking tours of the Village of Pinehurst, together with guided tours and lectures at Weymouth Center, as well as exhibitions at the Artists League, the Campbell House, Hollyhocks Art Gallery, the Hastings Gallery on the campus of Sandhills Community College and a Pinehurst Painters display at the Carolina Hotel.
History is brought alive through art in several programs presented by the Moore County Historical Association.
"Greeting The Train: Sounds of Southern Pines Memories" starts the day off bright and early Saturday morning at the Southern Pines railroad station, while groups playing old-time music will entertain Saturday afternoon at the Old Bethesda Church in Aberdeen.
The church will be the site for a staging of the drama, "The Oldest Living Confederate Widow: Her Confession," on Sunday afternoon.
Since the Palustris Festival was conceived as a family-friendly celebration, Moore OnStage is presenting "The Circus Comes to Town" at the Southern Pines Primary School, while the STARS School is producing three early evening programs focusing on the arts.
Plans are being finalized by Aberdeen Parks and Recreation for a number of activities for children and their families
While organizers of the Palustris Festival complete the schedule of all the happenings in the last week of March, they are actively seeking corporate and individual sponsors for the Festival and its events.
"We think this is a great opportunity for the community to show its support for the varied arts scene in Moore County, as well as attracting visitors from the southeastern region to the area," says Chris Dunn, executive director of the Arts Council of Moore County.
In addition, the Convention and Visitors Bureau is calling on local businesses to become involved in the festival by offering special discounts or packages for festival attendees.
"This is a way that the business community can become partners in the Palustris Festival, and at the same time, can expect to experience an increase in visitor spending during the four-day span of the festival," says Caleb Miles, executive director of the CVB.
For more information on how to become a sponsor or a business partner of the Festival, call Chris Dunn at (910) 692-4356, or Claire Phillips at (910) 692-3330, ext. 235.
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