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WCU Stories

Mountain Heritage Day adds performances, plus Cherokee stickball

 By Geoff Cantrellcherokeestickball


Western Carolina University’s Mountain Heritage Day always combines the best of downhome gatherings, sing-alongs and the county fair into one daylong festival.

The free, family fun event, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 25, has a stellar lineup of Circle Tent performers and traditional crafts exhibitors to make happen again this year.

“Our hallmark is displaying the diversity of cultures, the diversity of talents and skills, and the diversity of traditions that make the mountains we call home so special,” said Peter Koch, education associate at WCU’s Mountain Heritage Center and an event organizer. “I think we have something from everybody and something for everybody.”

Circle Tent schedule:

  • 10 a.m. – Ann Woodford, African American history and stories
  • 11 a.m. – Deitz Family, bluegrass and old-time fiddle tunes
  • Noon – Roots and Branches Circle with Kristin Scott Benson, Adam Haynes, Brayden McMahan and Phil Jamison
  • 1 p.m. – Sparky Rucker, Mountain Voices storytelling
  • 2 p.m. – “Suffering and Hope Circle” with the Deitz Family, Jeanette Schrock and Mark Queen, Tim Rayben and Phil Jamison
  • 3 p.m. – Pressley Girls, duet from Brasstown playing classic tunes
  • 4 p.m. – Community Square Dance

Children's Tent schedule:

  • 10:30 a.m. – Pressley Girls
  • 11:30 a.m. – Phil and Gaye Johnson
  • Noon – Blue Ridge Junior Appalachian Musicians
  • 12:30 p.m. – Bailey Mountain Cloggers
  • 1 p.m. – Dietz Family
  • 1:30 p.m. – Apple Blossom Cloggers
  • 2 p.m. – Uncle Ted White and Whitewater Bluegrass Co.



Traditional Crafts and Skills Exhibitors:

  • Ramona Lossiah, Cherokee basketry
  • Jeff Gottlieb, kudzu crafts and baskets
  • Louise, Butch and George Edward Goings, Cherokee basketry, woodcarving, flint knapping
  • Brock Martin, blacksmith
  • Nora Mosrie, cornshuck crafts
  • William Rogers, coppersmith
  • Dede Styles, natural dyeing
  • Nate Darnell, tractor rides
  • Nathan Woods and Ethan Fortner, horse and mule demonstrations
  • Big Cove Youth (Kolanvyi), stickball team
  • Richard Tichich, quilt making

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