Winter Concert with Kaira Ba & The Grand Shell Game: January 31st

live-full-stage-2-280x170Please join us for a winter concert at the Cat’s Cradle Back Room on the afternoon of Sunday, January 31st. We’ll be drumming up excitement for our upcoming campaign, Growing with Shakori Hills, which will help fund site infrastructure/improvements and arts education offerings to the community.

We’ll kick the afternoon off with some ruckus old-time music from our own house band, The Hoppin’ Johnnies, followed by performances from Kaira Ba and The Grand Shell Game. Click HERE for more information, including schedule, band info and tickets.

Raffle Drawing at the show:

Enter to win a PAIR of tickets to every 2016 Shakori Hills event! This includes four-day passes to the Spring and Fall GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance, as well as Hoppin’ John Fiddlers’ Convention, NC Stars in the Round, Summer Concerts & Workshops. Tickets are available at the show and at local businesses: Chatham Marketplace (Pittsboro), Small B & B (Pittsboro), Circle City Books (Pittsboro), New Horizons Trading Company (Pittsboro), The Regulator Bookshop (Durham), Townsend, Bertram & Company (Carrboro), Deep Roots Market (Greensboro), Design Archives (Greensboro), Sister’s Jewelry & Gifts (Greensboro), NYP Live on Tate (Greensboro) and The Music Barn (Greensboro). Tickets are just $5 each.

 Shakori Hills: Why It Matters…

Here at Shakori Hills, we support our local music and arts community through cultural events and outreach to our local schools, while teaching environmental awareness and sustainable living practices.

Our most notable events are the twice-yearly Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance in May and October and the Hoppin’ John Old-Time & Bluegrass Fiddlers’ Convention each September. The GrassRoots Festival presents over 40 bands spanning world-wide traditional styles and genres. Each moment of the festival offers exciting and educational opportunities in which the entire family can  participate! There are special children’s and youth areas with games, crafts, and interactive workshops. Childrens and adult workshops encompass everything from how to play the fiddle, to movement (dance, yoga, etc) or garden classes and seminars on current green issues affecting the world around us. The festival also provides a great venue for education in World Music, volunteerism, and for local food and craft vendors to display and sell their wares. We support our local nonprofit community and organizations by offering space to set up tables and share their mission with thousands of festival attendees and donate festival tickets to local nonprofits to help their mission and fundraising activities.   

The Hoppin’ John Old-Time & Bluegrass Fiddlers’ Convention brings musicians, dancers and music lovers together in celebration of old-time and bluegrass music, North Carolina’s traditional music. Attendees enjoy dance, instrument and band contests, square dances, instructional workshops and unscheduled magical moments. The convention helps keep traditional music and culture alive and offers opportunities for young people to play on stage, learn and share the music, regardless of experience or skill level.

Our longest running program, Roots in the Schools (formerly Hopes and Dreams) brings musicians and artists into local schools. These sessions range from classroom instructional workshops to entire-school concerts. At a time when public schools are cutting music and art budgets, Roots in the Schools (RiS) makes a real difference in our children’s education. RiS operates in conjunction with the GrassRoots Festival and Hoppin’ John Fiddlers’ Convention three times per year, but with your support we can extend it throughout the school year.

The Shakori Hills Community Garden is an 8,800 square foot organic garden with three crop rotation areas designed to keep the growing and harvesting on a year-round cycle. Anyone interested in participating can, from sharing in the decisions about what gets planted to taking home the harvest. Garden Coordinator and Central Carolina Community College Sustainable Agriculture Instructor, Cheryl McNeill, leads free weekly workshops open to the public. Excess harvest (1,000 pounds this year) is donated to the CORA Food Pantry.

Shakori Hills also partners with other non-profit groups in hosting their events and fundraisers. Scheduled for 2016 are the 3rd annual Piedmont Earthskills Gathering and the 2nd annual Furry Friends Festival.

Development plans for 2016 include the completion of a 10-stall permanent public restroom, improved landscape engineering to promote site drainage and structural beginnings of a multi-use community hall for hosting special events, workshops, art and craft shows, classes, dances and small concerts. Work has already begun improving the beautiful trails throughout the 72-acre park and expanding picnic areas to be enjoyed by the public year-round.

Fostering and developing our infrastructure allows us to create and host more offerings and events year round. Our 2016 program improvements and developments include expanding Roots in the Schools, offering free voice and instrument lessons for children in conjunction with the Junior Appalachian Musicians and High Strung Instruments of Durham, as well as classes in yoga, dance, painting and sculpture. We are also looking forward to summer camps in 2017.

Building a Folk Arts School at Shakori Hills and expanding our partnerships with local artists’ and crafters’ guilds is one of our great dreams for the future. The arts of woodturning, weaving, carving, pottery, glass blowing, painting and many more sustainable craft forms thrive here already, so this is a natural step in our evolution. The goal in this dream is to provide a venue and forum to share local talent where others can learn, practice, and gain a skill to be passed down to future generations.

Shakori Hills Community Arts Center is a place where everyone can enjoy nature, take strolls on beautiful trails, have family afternoons in the sun and enjoy art, music, family, life and all it has to offer. By building on what we are blessed to have at our fingertips, our local culture will continue to strengthen and prosper!

Your contributions will help us reach our vision of giving back to our community by making the Shakori Hills Community Arts Center a place for everyone to enjoy now and for decades to come! Click here to make a donation.

Roots in the Schools


We’ll be continuing and expanding this program of bringing musicians, artists and dancers into local schools to help supplement the curriculum. If you are a teacher, parent or school administrator interested in bringing this program to your school, get in touch at

  Community Garden

Want to grow your own food but don’t have the space or time commitment for your own garden? Community garden workers get a share of everything harvested and excess is donated to the CORA Food Pantry. You can contribute as much or as little as meets your schedule and energy level. Everyone is welcome to participate in the garden, from the early planning stages like deciding what crops to grow, ordering seeds and tilling the ground to planting, weeding, mulching and harvesting. No previous gardening experience is necessary.


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: Todd E. Gaul, Kevin James, Paul Kerr, Matthew Coburn, Allison Springer, Sara Waters, Dwayne Ritchie

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