snowy shak2Thank you Everyone for a fabulous 2014!

Happy New Year! Here’s a recap of some Shakori Hills happenings you may not have been aware of.

Roots in the Schools

Shakori Hills continued it’s Roots in the Schools program (formerly Hopes and Dreams) in 2014, working with local schools and APPLES interns from UNC to bring music and art into our local schools.

This past fall, Joe Troop and Diego Sanchez, touring the states from Argentina, participated in our Roots in the Schools program and brought their special blend of cultures to Perry Harrison Elementary School in Northern Chatham County. This was our first ever program at Perry Harrison. Joe and Diego played songs from old-time and bluegrass traditions, but also infused their presentation with Latin inspired compositions. They spoke to the children about how music is part of tradition in all parts of the world.

DSC_9605Given that the population of Chatham County is diverse and is made up of many peoples of Latino origin, it was particularly pertinent that Joe and Diego tied their musical experiences together. Joe grew up in Winston-Salem, steeped in Round Peak musical tradition, yet also influenced by bluegrass sounds, and his musical partner Diego is a classical/ jazz trained musician from Argentina. They illustrated different cultures blending together musically, complementing and benefiting from each other – something we can learn from and extend into our daily lives.

Along with music, Roots in the Schools offers art and craft workshops and IMG_2860demonstrations, as well. APPLES intern Melissa Swope visited Woods Charter School this past spring. Melissa demonstrated the art of throwing on the wheel and then each student created a small clay leaf to add to the pottery piece.

A group of local old-time musicians and clog dancers gave an interactive performance at Silk Hope Elementary School in September, an annual event that ties in with the Hoppin’ John Fiddlers’ Convention. Silk Hope Elementary has come to rely on these performances as part of their NC History curriculum!

Community Garden

In addition to fulfilling it’s goal of providing a community space for everyone who IMG_0284wishes to grow fresh and organic food of their own, the Shakori HIlls Community Garden donated 283 pounds of produce to the CORA Food Pantry this year. Shared with all the folks reached by CORA were summer and winter squash, green beans, cabbage, sweet potatoes, carrots, cucumbers, beets, okra, peppers, melons and tomatoes!

The garden occupies approximately 8800 square feet, with three crop rotation areas to keep the harvest on a year-round cycle. The project is coordinated by Cheryl McNeill, an instructor with CCCC’s Sustainable Agriculture program. We also offer garden tours and workshops at no cost to local schools and community groups. If you’d like to get involved, or are interested in a garden workshop, drop us a line at or call the office at 919-542-1746.

Thank you for all your support! We look forward to seeing you soon!

Our Mission . .

Shakori Hills Community Arts Center’s mission is to provide culturally significant arts, music and environmental-sustainability education and outreach to our local community and schools.

Slideshow Photo Credits: Kevin James, Paul Kerr, Matthew Coburn, Allison Springer, Sara Waters, Dwayne Ritchie

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