Salem Museum & Historical Society is hosting their first ever Appalachian Heritage Day! With lots to do and great guests - including famed Appalachian author and award winning Southern writer Sharyn McCrumb - this is an event not to be missed!
Here's the official event information:
Appalachian Heritage Event
When: Friday, Oct 12, 2012; Saturday, Oct 13, 2012
Where: Salem Museum (map)
The Roanoke Valley is, after all, a valley. That means it’s surrounded by mountains. And in those mountains, a unique and colorful culture prevailed for generations, a way of life nearly forgotten today.
“We forget that Salem and Roanoke until recent times were small towns surrounded by numerous rural communities,” said John Long, Salem Museum director. “Our grandparents’ way of life was totally different than what we experience. Those traditions need to be remembered.”
For the first time ever, the Salem Museum will help to revive the old ways of life with its Appalachian Heritage Days on October 12 and 13. A full slate of exhibits, demonstrations, performances, and readings will bring back the forgotten days when everyone knew how to milk a cow.
This event is co-sponsored by the National League of American Pen Women, Roanoke Branch. The NLAPW dates to 1885 and is made up of women writers, artists, and musicians. Several of the local members will be presenting their talents on Saturday.
“While many people think that Appalachia is a completely distinct area, the study of Appalachian Heritage opens a window onto many traditional areas of the world today in terms of the culture of survival,” said Peggy Shifflett, organizer for the event. “Food production and use, folk music, storytelling, and customs prevail even after the impact of economic change, war, and politics.”
Shifflett, a retired Radford University professor and author of several books on growing up in Appalachia, will be one of the regional authors featured during Saturday’s events. She will be signing her latest book “On the Way to Toe Town.” Regional authors Becky Mushko, Ethel Born, Charles Lytton, and Scottie Pritchard will also be featured on Saturday. Margaret DuBois will be displaying her unique paintings.
The festivities kick off on Friday, October 12 with a keynote address by famed Appalachian author and award winning Southern writer Sharyn McCrumb. Best known for her Appalachian “Ballad” novels, McCrumb will share her thoughts on the writer’s art and the inspiration she finds in the people of Appalachia. Her talk will be at 7:00 p.m. with a reception featuring traditional Appalachian foods following. Tickets to McCrumb’s address are $10 in advance and $12 at the door, and can be purchased at the Museum. Hurry-- seats are limited!
On Saturday, October 13 Heritage Days will feature Appalachian history presentations all day long including the following:
• Local writers with their books.
• Traditional music by musicologist, author and specialist in Appalachian music Stevan Jackson, playing guitar and harp; and Dan & Marian McConnell, roots musicians from Catawba.
• Story Telling by Warnie Shifflett, Beth Rossi, and Charles Lytton sharing tales of growing up in Appalachia.
• Food—homemade apple dumplings, country ham biscuits, and fresh cider will be for sale, giving a taste of Appalachia to the fast-food generation.
• Moonshine history—Jack Powell, a retired revenue agent and author of several books, will be discussing the history of moonshining and will illustrate the process with a 90-year-old copper still from Hopkins Gap, Va. (sorry, no samples of the real stuff!).
• Traditional Appalachian toys, artifacts, quilts, and other relics of the past will be on display.
• Plus the fascinating historical exhibits of the Salem Museum, preserving the history of one Appalachian town from Native American settlements to the days of Lakeside Amusement Park. “Vanished Salem: Late Lamented Local Landmarks” will be the featured exhibit, recalling local homes, businesses, and institutions which are no more. All of the events and presentations on Saturday are free. “This will be a great event for kids,” added Long. “It’ll be a great way to show them how things were once upon a time!”
The Salem Museum is located at 801 East Main Street in Salem, and is open Tuesday to Friday from 10 to 4, and Saturday from noon to five. No admission is charged for the Museum galleries.