It’s hard to believe, but it’s that time of year again! Get ready for Pickin’: A Music Celebration, Chatham Arts Council’s Annual Benefit for Artists-in-Schools, featuring The Bluegrass Experience on their 47th anniversary! This year’s event is sponsored by Opus Financial Advisors, and will be held on Sunday, November 11 at the Chatham County Agriculture & Conference Center in Pittsboro. Guests will be treated to music played by Chatham County’s own Tommy Edwards with band members past and present.
This year, we’re lucky to have some talented kids flexing their musical muscles during the event! Clapping Hands Farm Ukulele Band will perform as folks arrive from 4:30 to 5:00 pm and the Chatham Central Advanced Chorus will be performing at intermission, when The Bluegrass Experience takes a little set break.
Doors for Pickin’ will open at 4:00 pm, with the concert following at 5:00 pm. In addition to some seriously impressive bluegrass music-making, the event offers delicious food, beer, and wine, by Carolina Brewery and included in ticket prices. Buy tickets online here via credit card ($50 for adults – all inclusive; $20 for children ages three to 18; FREE for children two and under).
If you prefer paper tickets, Deep River Mercantile; Edwards Antiques, Art and Music; McIntyre’s Books at Fearrington Village – all in Pittsboro; 501 Pharmacy at the Verandah (Briar Chapel); and Twin Birch and Teasel in Siler City will have them available for sale via cash/check. Everyone will have a seat at a table this year, and tables seat 10. If you have a group of 10 folks who would like to sit together, please email Robena Meek at email@example.com by November 9.
In the meantime, we’ve got some fabulous sponsor opportunities for you arts-lovin’ local business owners. Click here to learn more and reach out to Catherine Hobbs (Catherine@ChathamArtsCouncil.org), if you’re interested.
The Bluegrass Experience is led by guitarist Tommy Edwards playing alongside Mike Aldridge on the mandolin, Stan Brown on banjo, bassist Thomas “Snuffy” Smith, and Keith Thomas on fiddle.
Not many bands can boast harmony for 47 years, but The Bluegrass Experience is an exception. In 1971, a few friends joined forces to do something they all loved – play music together. But within a year, it was clear they were doing much more than just fiddling around. They had been named the World’s Championship Bluegrass Band at The Union Grove Fiddler’s Convention in North Carolina. At Pickin’, they’re looking forward to playing music together to celebrate their heritage and perhaps, uncovering new bluegrass fans along the way.
The event is much more than a celebration of the world-class band and its well-known bluegrass music. Edwards is a retired Chatham County school teacher with a zeal for education. All proceeds from the event will benefit the CAC’s Artists-in-Schools Initiative, a program that has been bringing professional artists into schools to support math, science, language, and history curricula for the past three years. Through interactive, engaging workshops taught by theatre actors, performance artists, dancers, mural painters, African drummers, and strings musicians, students have unique opportunities for a deeper engagement with learning objectives. (To learn more about our Artists-in-Schools Initiative, click here.)
Don’t miss this year’s event! We look forward to celebrating with you on Sunday, November 11 at the Chatham County Agriculture & Conference Center in Pittsboro.