Friday, 16 February 2018

Isis Music Hall hosts fundraiser for Lloyd Johnson Foundation March 29

Photo courtesy of event organizers
From event organizers:

Lloyd’s Large Time – A Fundraiser for the Lloyd Johnson Foundation

ASHEVILLE, NC — Wherever bluegrass bellowed, Lloyd Johnson followed.

In honor of the life and musical spirit of this WNC native, Isis Music Hall hosts Lloyd’s Large Time: A Benefit for the Lloyd Johnson Foundation Thursday, March 29.

“My dad was a bit of character on the music scene in Western North Carolina,” said Lloyd’s son and fellow musician Steve Johnson. “He was close friends with many of the musicians in our area and this event at Isis is just one way to keep his love of music from our area going.

Proceeds from the benefit will fund The Lloyd Johnson Foundation, a non-profit organization created after Lloyd’s death in 2017 to provide education and career advancement opportunities to grow and nurture the musical spirit of Western North Carolina.

The benefit brings to the Isis stage an all-star line-up led by award-winning Americana artist Jim Lauderdale.

Lauderdale will share the stage with a string of artists from Sarah Burton, Si Kahn and Mark Bumgarner & Friends to The Po’ Ramblin’ Boys and other super surprise special guests.

“It’s a way for the Foundation to raise funds to continue to support and grow our vibrant music scene in Asheville and the surrounding area” said Steve, who is the co-host of MerleFest Radio Hour, and currently works as the Artist Relations Manager for Wilkes Community College/MerleFest. “My father introduced me to several different Bluegrass musicians as I was growing up and that really sparked my interest in music. We hope that this foundation can continue that same tradition of supporting people who are interested in pursuing a formal career in the music industry.”

Lloyd’s love for music went beyond the boundaries of WNC.

Over his life, he performed in several Bluegrass bands — most recently, the Dixie Grass Band. In addition to performing, he has supported bluegrass and country music artists through festival and concert attendance. Over the years, he traveled across the country forging lasting relationships with legends like Bill Monroe, Don Reno, Wayne Lewis, and countless other musicians.

The Lloyd Johnson Foundation will serve as primary sponsor of the notable MerleFest 2018 Band Competition, which highlights local, national, and international artists at MerleFest, with the winner receiving a prime-time performance slot.

“Lloyd loved going to concerts at the Isis and I hope our music community will come out to show their support of Dad, the venue, the artists, and help us continue to make a difference in Western North Carolina’s music scene,” Steve said.

Tickets for Lloyd’s Large Time are $20 in advance and $25 day of show. All proceeds will go the Lloyd Johnson Foundation to grow and nurture the musical spirit of Western North Carolina. Visit isisasheville.com for more information.

About Isis Music Hall

Isis Music Hall is a premier concert venue, bar, and eatery in the heart of West Asheville. Their name gives a nod to the building’s history – a single screen cinema built in the mid 1930’s. Today, this famed Art Deco style venue hosts many of the top touring artists and musicians in the nation. With two stages, multiple bars, and outdoor patio, Isis Music Hall is one of the hottest spots in the city for live music. In 2015, they were honored with the Venue of the Year Momentum Award by the International Bluegrass Music Association, as well as the Griffin Award for historical renovation and preservation. Join Kitchen 743 at Isis Music Hall nightly for an array of creative, local and seasonal fare.

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Saturday, 3 February 2018

Burial Beer Co. Begins Construction on New Craft Beer Bar

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Burial Beer Co.’s newest wave of expansion is taking shape in South Asheville in the form of a new craft beer bar called Forestry Camp. The two-story structure, built in the early 1900s by members of the Conservation Civilian Corps, will soon house a small selection of Burial beers and focus on a diverse draught and retail beer list featuring breweries from around the country and internationally. The owners of Burial have a stated goal of curating a selection of beers that feature craft offerings beyond the Burial portfolio and their South Slope taproom.

“Burial’s taproom will always exist at 40 Collier. There is no way that you could replace the aura of that storied ground,” states Doug Reiser, Co-Founder. “When we purchased the new property in 2015, we did so with the hope and dream of bringing a real, community-driven beer bar to Asheville. The goal is to connect Ashevillians with the great people (owners/brewers/employees) that make some of the best beer in the country. We won’t just buy beer off lists, we will bring the beer and the people behind it into the beer bar the for these interactions. The purveyors of craft will also be smiling faces about the bar; they will be humans who live and breathe and talk with the visitors. The goal of Forestry Camp is to offer everything that craft was intended to be.”

The two-acre property is currently home to Burial’s production brewery, corporate offices, and sour barrel facility where day-to-day operations have been conducted since October 2016. In keeping with their core values, Burial is aiming to build out Forestry Camp with the same revivalist spirit that has guided the whole of their expansion.

“We aim to breathe new life into those beautiful old bones while carefully maintaining their soul,” explains Tim Gormley, Co-Founder. “We chose to keep the original name of the property, “Forestry Camp”, as homage to its vibrant roots. We aim to use as much wood from the property as possible to build the tables, chairs, and bar itself. With the d├ęcor we will continue to celebrate the initial purpose of the property, utilizing tools of the trade, a purposeful tie in with our current South Slope taproom. When you have a beer at Forestry Camp, you’ll have the comforts of a modern bar, but you’ll have traveled back in time. You’ll have experienced a history so important to Asheville, and it’ll taste so good.”

Slated to open to the public in early summer 2018, the Forestry Camp property will afford the brewery both a new outlet for retail and much needed space for their ever-growing festivals and events.

“Forestry Camp was named as such because it truly is a camp,” states Gormley. “Six building are spread across its two acres, creating a feel akin to a winery estate or a university commons. I can’t imagine a better place for a festival. We may keep one of our annual festivals in the South Slope, for nostalgic reasons, but we will definitely be moving toward Forestry Camp hosted events. More info to come as the property becomes more fully realized.”

Forestry Camp boasts ample parking space via its own lot and connected parking above for an estimated 100 cars total. For events and weekends, 200 additional spaces will be available across from the property.

A small menu of sandwiches, charcuterie, and other locally purveyed goods are inplanning for the beer bar. Additionally a curated wine list with a moderate whiskey and Amaro selection will be offered all the while keeping the focus on craft beer.

“The beer bar will have 20 taps of craft beer, but will offer vintages of over 150 different canned and bottled beer, including extremely limited beers that you could otherwise only get at brewery taprooms,” states Reiser. “This is the craft drinker closeness and experience that we hope to purvey – and we hope other brewers follow suit in their own home states.”

ABOUT BURIAL BEER CO.

Founded in June 2013, Burial Beer Co. crafts Belgian-inspired ales, and bold American styles with a dedication to creativity, tradition, modernization, and preservation. Residing in and revitalizing the South Slope District of Asheville, NC, the brewery began its life as a one-barrel system that grew to a ten-barrel in just over a year. Fall 2016 brought a new wave of expansion and revitalization as Burial Beer Co. expanded again to a second location in South Asheville. This location is home to a twenty-barrel production brewery, corporate offices, barrel facility, and in spring 2018 a two-story craft beer bar called Forestry Camp. The brewery currently distributes full time to North Carolina, Georgia, and New York and intermittently to Colorado, Massachusetts, and Ohio. For more information visit www.burialbeer.com and follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/burialbeer/

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Monday, 22 January 2018

Hickory, Asheville Make Nat Geo’s List Of Best Small Cities

CHARLOTTE, NC — Two North Carolina cities have made National Geographic’s list of Small U.S. Cities On the Rise, joining a group of 27 other cities lauded in 10 categories of "superlatives."

The superlatives were compiled, according to authors George Stone and Amy Alipio, using "unconventional metrics that we think lead to happiness: green spaces, galleries, coffee shops, breweries, music venues, Instagrammable moments, and more."

The superlatives for the two Tar Heel cities deemed standouts by National Geographic Traveler might not come as big surprises. Asheville, N.C. was called "Most Artsy," and "Sudsiest," and Hickory, N.C. was said to be "Hipster Friendly."

South Carolina’s biggest cities fared well in the list, as well. Charleston, S.C. was called "Most Instagramed" and "Most Artsy. Carnivores rule in Columbia and Greenville, which were both called "Meatiest." Columbia also racked up a designation as "Best Groomed."

Interested in seeing how other U.S. cities fared in the line up? Here is the list:

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Albuquerque, New Mexico (Sudsiest) Anchorage, Alaska (Trending- Most Caffeinated) Ann Arbor, Michigan (Greenest) Annapolis, Maryland (Trending- Dog Friendly) Asheville, North Carolina (Most Artsy, Sudsiest) Baton Rouge, Louisiana (Best Groomed) Boulder, Colorado (Hipster Friendly, Musically Grooviest, Most Caffeinated, Sudsiest) Charleston, South Carolina (Most Instagrammed, Most Artsy) Columbia, South Carolina (Best Groomed, Meatiest) Greenville, South Carolina (Meatiest) Hagerstown, Maryland (Best Groomed) Healdsburg, California (Trending- Greenest) Hickory, North Carolina (Hipster Friendly) Honolulu, Hawaii (Musically Grooviest, Most Instagrammed, Most Artsy) Kansas City, Missouri (Trending- Most Artsy) Lakeland, Florida (Most Dog Friendly) Louisville, Kentucky (Trending- Meatiest) Madison, Wisconsin (Greenest) New Orleans, Louisiana (Trending- Hipster Friendly) Newport, Rhode Island (Trending- Best Groomed) Olympia, Washington (Most Caffeinated, Greenest) Omaha, Nebraska (Trending- Musically Grooviest) Pensacola, Florida (Most Dog Friendly) Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Trending- Sudsiest) Portland, Maine (Most Instagrammed) Rapid City, South Dakota (Trending- Most Instagrammed) Reno, Nevada (Meatiest, Most Dog Friendly) Santa Cruz, California (Musically Grooviest) Spokane, Washington (Hipster Friendly, Most Caffeinated)

WATCH: Can You Guess The Best Small Cities In America?

Photo via Pixaby

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Artspace survey on affordable housing for Asheville artists launches Jan. 25

Press release from the Center for Craft:

The Center for Craft and Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce are pleased to announce the launch of a comprehensive community outreach campaign and survey to quantify affordable housing and space options for Asheville’s artists, makers, performers and creatives. The Arts Market Survey, with a tagline of “Keep Asheville Creative,” is the next step to addressing community need as part of a bigger project to develop live/work, mixed-use-model development for the creative sector in Asheville.

The Arts Market Survey will be open for eight weeks, launching January 25, 2018 and closing on March 26, 2018. The survey is facilitated by Minneapolis-based Artspace Consulting, a branch of Artspace Projects, Inc., a national nonprofit real estate developer that specializes in creating, owning, and operating affordable housing and studio space for artists and creative sector businesses. As an added incentive, survey participants will have the chance to win a $250 prize for creative supplies.

A survey launch party will take place on Thursday, January 25, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7 pm at the Center for Craft (67 Broadway Street). The party is free and open to the public, and artists, makers, performers, and creatives are encouraged to attend. Registration for the event is available at keepavlcreative.com. Refreshments include light hors d’oeuvres by Foothills Local Meats, kombucha cocktails by Buchi Kombucha and desserts by French Broad Chocolates. Free parking will be available at HomeTrust Bank.

Stephanie Moore, Executive Director of the Center for Craft, views the project as a top community priority. “We know that Asheville has a tremendous creative sector that has significantly shaped the region’s identity and culture for the past 100 years. We also know that many artists and creatives are leaving due to the rapidly increasing cost of living, putting Asheville’s culture at risk. Developing affordable housing and space solutions for artists and creatives is a key priority.”

Artspace Preliminary Feasibility Report

In August 2017, Artspace submitted preliminary findings, confirming the need for an affordable housing development for artists and creatives in Asheville and recommending that the community quantify the demand through an Arts Market Survey. Based on this early assessment, Artspace identified the City-owned parcel located in the River Arts District at 81-91 Riverside Drive (i.e. “Ice House”) as the priority development site. Artspace noted that in spite of challenging site conditions, retaining artists in the River Arts District is a priority when taking into consideration their “sustainable community impact” metrics. Click here to view the Preliminary Feasibility Report.

Mayor Esther Manheimer was an early advocate of the project and sits on the Core Leadership Group. “Affordable housing continues to be a priority for the city of Asheville. Artspace’s preliminary recommendation for an affordable housing development for artists in the River Arts District is exciting. I look forward to working with our community partners to move this project forward,” remarked Manheimer.

Arts Market Survey

Ultimately, the Arts Market Survey provides an opportunity to test assumptions and develop a project concept that meets the community’s needs. Mike Marcus, Assistant Director at the Center for Craft views the Arts Market Survey as a critical next step.

“This is where the rubber meets the road. It’s critical that everyone who considers themselves an artist, maker, musician, performer, designer and/or ‘creative’ be counted, whether it’s their full-time pursuit or part-time passion. Arts and cultural organizations and influencers are being encouraged to spread the word through their networks so that we reach everyone in the community,” said Marcus.

Newly elected City Councilwoman Sheneika Smith notes, “This project is a wonderful display of how community-led solutions help advance efforts to solve Asheville’s housing challenges. I encourage creatives from all artistic disciplines to weigh in, so that no other artist or cultural leader is lost to another region.”

To assist in this effort, print and digital media kits are being distributed at the Artspace Survey Launch Party event on January 25th. For more information on media kits, please contact Mike Marcus at mmarcus@craftcreativitydesign.org

Funding Partners

The preliminary feasibility assessment and Arts Market Survey have been generously funded by The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, City of Asheville, Center for Craft, Ted and Senator Terry Van Duyn, Duke Energy Foundation, HomeTrust Bank, Dana and Jana Stonestreet, Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce, and Diamond Brand Gear.

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