Arts Center to host “Peanuts” Thanksgiving Party

The Maria V. Howard Arts Center will host, “It’s a Thanksgiving Party, Charlie Brown!” on Saturday, November 23rd, from 10 a.m. to 12 Noon, in recognition of its current “Peanuts… Naturally” exhibition.

The event will feature tours of the “Peanuts… Naturally” exhibit, along with other Arts Center exhibits, hands-on activities, live Jazz music featured in “Peanuts” specials, and more.

“Peanuts… Naturally” is a national touring exhibit organized by the Charles M. Schulz Museum. The exhibit features more than 50 items from the Museum, including classic strips, Peanuts-inspired art and collectibles. Most of the pieces represent natural and environmental themes Schulz often incorporated into his famous strip throughout its 50-year run.

The exhibit also includes several “hands on” stations where visitors of all ages can learn more about biology, plants, astronomy, weather and the environment.

“Peanuts… Naturally” is on display at the Maria V. Howard Arts Center at The Imperial Centre, 270 Gay Street, Downtown Rocky Mount from now until January 5th. The exhibit is free to the public and open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.


United Way Corn Hole Tournament scheduled for October 19th


(NEWS RELEASE) The City of Rocky Mount will hold a Corn Hole tournament on Saturday, October 19, 2013 in the BTW Gymnasium to benefit the United Way. The tournament will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will feature cash prizes for pro-teams, like $300 for first place; $150 for second place and $50 for third place. The prize for amateur teams include a trophy for first and second place.

The entry fee for pro-teams is $40 per team or $20 per person. Amateur teams must pay $20 per team or $10 per person. All proceeds will benefit the United Way.

For more information, call 885-6127 or 883-3817. The BTW Gymnasium is located at 727 Pennsylvania Avenue, Rocky Mount.

BBQ Throwdown This Weekend in Downtown Rocky Mount

Rain or shine, the 6th Annual Eastern Carolina BBQ Throwdown will take place this weekend, starting this afternoon on the grounds of the Rocky Mount Train Station and Rocky Mount Senior Center, Downtown on Church Street.

Festivities started today at 12noon and will continue through 8pm tonight, with live music from The Embers starting at 6pm. Tonight’s activities also include a Cornhole Tournament, organized by Rocky Mount Public Utilities, starting at 5pm. $500 in cash prizes will be awarded in the tournament, with all registration proceeds benefiting the City’s utility relief (W.A.R.M.) program.

Food vendors are also on hand today and tomorrow, along with a beer garden.

Saturday’s schedule starts at 10am tomorrow with the start of the BBQ competition. A sold out field of more than 55 competitors have signed up for their chance at $20,000 in cash prizes, including the Grand Champion prize of $5,000.

Saturday’s schedule also includes performances by the Main Event Band from 12noon to 1:30pm and the Holiday Band from 3pm to 4:30 pm. A local talent show will hosted by hosted Saturday afternoon, along with a BMX Bike Stunt Show at 12noon, 2pm and 4pm.

BBQ food vendors and other food vendors will be available during the entire BBQ Throw Down weekend. There will also be kids’ activities, including inflatables, pony rides, table games, video games and much more.

The BBQ Throw Down is sponsored by the Nash County Visitors Bureau, the Tourism Development Authority, Pepsi’s People’s Choice, Rocky Mount Public Utilities, the Gateway Centre Complex, Nash Community College Culinary Club and Hardee’s.

For additional details and a full schedule of events, visit

Enfield Horse Show returns to Halifax on September 7th

(NEWS RELEASE) Preparations are underway for the Enfield Horse Show 2013, which takes place Saturday, September 7, 2013. Sponsors are lining up, volunteers are in place, trophies are being created and entertainment is scheduled. The show will be held – rain or shine – at the Halifax County 4-H Horse and Livestock Complex, Dog Pound Road, in Halifax.

Last year, we had the largest participation in the Tri-County Horse Club Circuit. This year, Lenne Ward, President of the Enfield Lions, said she “expects an even larger turnout.”

Enfield was once the home of the largest one-day horse show in the nation. Beginning in 1951 the show ran annually for more than 20 years. The Enfield Lions Club has revived the tradition. Join us for a fun, all-breed, multi-discipline horse show.

Admission is free to the general public. There will be plenty of food, entertainment and horses, so arrive early and make a day of it. The show starts at 9:30 a.m.

Back by popular demand. A Breyer Model Horse Show, one of our most popular events last year, will be on display. Bring your collection of horses – and don’t forget to vote for your favorite.

New this year: A Stick Horse Show for children will be held at half-time. Prior to the show, children should build their very own stick horses and bring them to the show. The winners for the most creative stick horses will receive prizes.

Free transportation from Enfield: A bus will be leaving from Aunt Ruby’s parking lot every two hours for those who need a ride. (The bus will leave every two hours: 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.)
Participants/Riders can find entry forms online at the Tri-County Horse Show Casey Armstrong, a board member of the North Carolina Horse Council Foundation and resident of Enfield, is an adviser for this Lions event and will be overseeing registration.

We expect a big turnout for the day’s events, so register early.

There are plenty of opportunities to sponsor this event and you can do so for as little as $15. Help us renew a community tradition of quality family entertainment by supporting the Lions and the Enfield Horse Show 2013. Business owners can become Show Sponsors, Blue Ribbon Sponsors or Division Sponsors. We will also feature your business in our program. Contact Suzann Anderson at 252-445-2234 for more information on our sponsorship packages.

Event Contact: Andrew Wirtz, 252-592-1588. Press Contacts: Jennie Ward, or Suzann Anderson at or Brenda Greene at

Downtown Live attendees witness on-stage Proposal

Tevis Harris (left) proposed to his girlfriend and birthday girl, Shanet Dunn, during the July 11th edition of Rocky Mount's Downtown Live! series. (Photo by City of Rocky Mount)

Tevis Harris (left) proposed to his girlfriend and birthday girl, Shanet Dunn, during the July 11th edition of Rocky Mount’s Downtown Live! series. (Photo by City of Rocky Mount)

The July 11th edition of Rocky Mount’s Downtown Live not only featured long-standing favorites Jim Quick and the Coastline Band, but also the series’ first on-stage marriage proposal.

Thankfully, much like the show itself, the proposal was well received.

Here’s what happened, courtesy the City of Rocky Mount:

Shanet Dunn was excited about her 35th birthday and wasn’t shocked when her boyfriend, Tevis Harris, went on stage and sang Happy Birthday to her. After all, Harris is a singer with an upcoming cd set to debut. According to Dunn, Harris told her thecity requested that he sing during intermission. Dunn, however, didn’t expect Harris to get on one knee and ask her to marry him. “I’m excited, surprised, speechless,” said Dunn.

Harris decided to propose to his girlfriend at Downtown Live! because of how the event has grown.

“I like to do things big,” said Harris. “I thought this was the best place for it to be big. I also like for things to be fun, so Downtown Live! was the best place to showcase my woman, my wife.”

New Planetarium Laser Show features Pink Floyd

(NEWS RELEASE) The Rocky Mount Children’s Museum & Science Center presents “Laser Floyd” in the Cummins Planetarium. The laser show started on Thursday, August 1, 2013.  Musical tracks for this month’s laser show are from Pink Floyd’s classic rock album, “Dark Side of the Moon.”Selections include “Time,” “Money,” “Us and Them,” “On the Run” and more.

Laser light shows in the Cummins Planetarium change almost every month during 2013.  Also playing are planetarium shows including: “SpacePark 360,”  “Secrets of the Sun,” “Seasonal Stargazing” and “Big Bird’s Adventure.”  “Laser Floyd” is presented Tuesday through Sunday at 3 p.m., from August 1, 2013 through August 31, 2013. Planetarium admission is on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Children’s Museum & Science Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and is closed Mondays. The Museum remains open until 9 p.m. on the firstThursday of each month.

For additional information, call (252) 972-1167, or visit online

Rocky Mount moves Fireworks to August 15th Celebration

(NEWS RELEASE) The City of Rocky Mount’s inaugural End of Summer Celebration will take place Thursday, August 15, 2013 from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Rocky Mount Sports Complex. The End of Summer Celebration is an event for the entire family and will include activities such as inflatables for the kids, food, vendors and fireworks. Fireworks will begin at approximately 9:15 p.m. The event will also feature the Tams.

The Tams will perform at Rocky Mount’s End of Summer Celebration on August 15th, at the Rocky Mount Sports Complex

“The End of Summer Celebration will be held due to the City’s postponement of the 42nd annual Independence Celebration,” says Parks and Recreation Director Kelvin Yarrell. “Because the inclement weather prevented us from having fireworks and from seeing a live band on July 3, we decided an End of Summer Celebration would be best for residents and youth.”

The End of Summer Celebration will take place just a few weeks before area students head to school, giving families an opportunity to engage in various fun activities before their schedules get hectic. The event is FREE, and the only cost to attendees will be for food and beverages provided by vendors in attendance.

For more information about the End of Summer Celebration, presented by PNC and hosted by the City of Rocky Mount Parks and Recreation Department, call 972-1151.



Country Legend George Jones passes away at 81

George JonesGeorge Jones, widely considered the greatest male voice in country music, and equally known for living the life of pain, heartache, sin and redemption featured so often in his famous songs, passed away Friday morning in a Nashville, TN, hospital due to illness. He was 81 year old.

Jones was in the midst of a farewell tour when he was admitted to a Nashville hospital earlier this month following a routine examination. The tour was supposed to end with a tribute show this November at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, which had already sold out.

Country music starts expressed the sadness and sympathies towards Jones and his family today upon learning the news.

Another country music superstar, Garth Brooks, offered this tribute by email to the Associated Press:

“The greatest voice to ever grace country music will never die. Jones has a place in every heart that ever loved any kind of music.”

Some, like Keith Urban, chose to express their tributes in song.

Jones was born September 12, 1931, in Saratoga, TX. He grew up singing in church and eventually working the streets of Beaumont in his early teens, singing for tips. He first worked in radio in the late-1940’s, then recorded his first single in 1954, following three years of service with the United States Marine Corps.

His first hit, the 1955 single “Why Baby Why,” also became the first of many that not only served as signature classics of Jones, but also all of country music.

Fans and critics often hail his 1980 hit, “He Stopped Loving Her Today” as the greatest country music song of all time. The song, which took a year to record, not only resurrected Jones’ career, but also forced him to deal with the wreckage of decades of drug and alcohol abuse.

“Pretty simple, eh?” Jones wrote in his memoir (regarding recording the song). “I couldn’t get it. I had been able to sing while drunk all of my life. I’d fooled millions of people. But I could never speak without slurring when drunk. What we needed to complete that song was the narration, but Billy could never catch me sober enough to record four simple spoken lines.”

Jones’ life embodied the spirit and conflict always prevalent in the delivery of his vocals. No one could ever imitate or misidentify a George Jones recording because nobody could replicate the life he lived.

Jones witnessed many of the behaviors he carried on through his career firsthand as a child through his hardscrabble upbringing and alcoholic father. He was married four times, including his famous loving and volatile marriage to fellow Country superstar Tammy Wynette. His alcohol and drug-fueled lifestyle led to a string of arrests and missed performance, garnering him the dubios nickname “No Show Jones” by the end of the 1970’s.

Jones’ recovery still reflected the human challenges every addict faces. He almost died and suffered severe injuries from a 1999 car accident. Jones claimed the accident was caused in part by talking on a handheld cellular telephone, but it is also believed that alcohol played a part as well.

Somehow, despite his weaknesses and personal failures, Jones remained a beloved singer and entertainer. His ascension as a elder statesman of country music since the 1980’s, not to mention releasing more than 150 albums over a career that spans all or part of 7 decades, reflects both on the immense regarding fans and musicians had for his talent, as well as the genuine sense of forgiveness and humility of the country music faithful.

Jones was inducted into the membership of the Grand Ole Opry in 1956. He is  survived by his fourth wife, Nancy Sepulvado.

Nash CC Drama Stages “The Importance of Being Earnest”

Nash Community College Drama Club will perform the Oscar Wilde classic, “The Importance of Being Earnest” the weekend of March 15th-17th at the college’s Brown Auditorium.

Show-only performances will be held Friday, March 15th (7pm), and Sunday, March 17th (2pm). Tickets are $5/each for both performances.

A Dinner Theatre production, featuring meal catered by Nash Commuity College’s Culinary Arts Program, will be held Saturday, March 16th. Doors open at 5pm, with dinner served promptly at 5:30pm. Tickets for the Dinner Theatre production are $22/each.

Tickets for all performances can be purchased in advance at the Cashier’s Window in the campus Business & Industry Center. Dinner Theatre tickets should be purchased in advance, as seating is limited. Tickets will also be sold at the door (when available).

Check out a video preview of the performance below (YouTube):

Annoying words? “Like, whatever!”

We know them when we hear them. And, they remain just as annoying.

“Whatever” remained at the most annoying word or phrase used in conversation for 2012, according to a telephone survey conducted earlier this month by Marist Polling.

Marist’s sampling of 1,246 adults across the country between December 4th and 6th found that 32% ranked “whatever” most annoying. Second place, like, belonged to “like”, receiving 21%.

You know, or can guess, than “you know” placed third with 17%. “Just sayin” received 10%, while the rather new conpound pop culture reference “twitterverse” finished fifth with 9%.

Results indicated the rankings remained relatively constant across regions, education levels and ethnicities. There was some disagreement, however, from the perspective of age.

Younger responded (under 45) ranked “Like” most annoying, especially with respondents age 18-29. The elders (45 and over) ranked “whatever” first by a much wider margin.

Right now, you are probably thinking “whatever!”