Entertainment


The Seat of Justice returns to the Historic Dock Street Theatre beginning Feb. 17, 2016

Award-Winning Play Celebrates the Brave Citizens of South Carolina, Who Fought for Freedom and Justice in the Era of Segregation and Whose Efforts Led Directly to the United States Supreme Court's Landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education Ruling
CHARLESTON, SC Jan. 21, 2016 - South Carolina's pivotal role in the United States Supreme Court's landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education desegregation ruling will be celebrated in a new production of Julian Wiles's acclaimed play, The Seat of Justice.  Chronicling the heroic efforts of the brave citizens of rural Clarendon County, their leader the Rev. Joseph DeLaine, and Charleston's farsighted Federal Judge Waties Waring, The Seat of Justice tells the story of the fight for justice that led from the cotton fields of Clarendon Country, South Carolina, to the Federal Courthouse in Charleston and ultimately to the United States Supreme Court.
The Seat of Justice - Charleston Stage

The Seat of Justice - Charleston Stage

"This is a story," says playwright and Charleston Stage Founder, Julian Wiles, "that needs to be told and retold. Too many people are unaware of South Carolina's pivotal role in these landmark cases and the story of the brave individuals who fought for freedom and justice in the 1940's and 50's, really the beginning of the modern Civil Rights Movement. These brave individuals, through the cases of Pearson v. Elliott, Briggs vs. Elliott, literally changed the world-all because a group of ordinary parents stood up and demanded a better world for their children. Their brave stand was not without retribution however-many lost their jobs, their credit, and their homes. Shots were fired into their houses, and they saw their homes and churches go up in flames."
Wiles, who grew up on a cotton farm in nearby Calhoun County a few years after the events of the play, remembers those times well, and yet, he only discovered this story as an adult. "Although my grandparents had grown up in Clarendon Country, I didn't learn of this amazing struggle until much later in my life. It was amazing to me that this struggle had taken place literally on my doorstep, and yet, I knew nothing about it. It was something my family simply did not discuss.  That discussion is long overdue and I am hopeful this new production of The Seat of Justice will help spark those conversations. I truly believe that only by confronting our past can we truly move forward, and The Seat of Justice is an effort to do just that. The history of that time, the individual struggles and even the violence are all part of this story, but at its center are the brave men and women who stood up and fought for a better tomorrow. More than anything through The Seat of Justice, I hope to honor them. For it wasn't the lawyers or judges-even the lofty nine judges of The United States Supreme Court-who truly set the wheels of justice in motion. Instead, it was a community of brave tenant farmers, housemaids, mechanics and schoolteachers-simple mothers and fathers who took their seat one by one in the seat of justice and changed the world. They are the ones who as Dr. King once said, 'bend the arc of the moral universe toward justice.'"
The Seat of Justice features a cast of 22 led by professional New York actors Marvin Bell, who will play the Rev. Joseph DeLaine, one of the ministers who led the desegregation movement in Clarendon County and Crystin Gilmore, who will play Mrs. Ruby Cornwell, the legendary Charleston Civil Rights leader who sat on the front row of the Federal Courthouse in Charleston when the case of Briggs v. Elliott came to trial in 1950. Bell and Gilmore will be joined by members of Charleston Stage's Resident Professional Acting Company, as well as, leading Charleston based performers. In addition, students from Ashley River Creative Arts, Charleston Development Academy, Charleston School of the Arts, Howe Hall Aims and Mason Prep will play the students of Clarendon County. The production will feature a number of special performances, enrichment events and other activities to provide additional insight into this moving story. These will begin with a special performance on Wednesday, February 17, 2016, for members of the surrounding and state Bar Associations that will feature and post show discussion featuring South Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Costa M. Pleicones, United States District Judge Richard Gergel and moderated by South Carolina Circuit Court Judge Clifton Newman. The discussion will focus on the ethical issues, the struggle and the legal case of Briggs v. Elliott brought to the forefront. The 2pm private matinee on Saturday, February 20th, hosted by The College of Charleston's Avery Institute for Afro-American History and Culture will honor the descendants of the Briggs vs. Elliott parents who signed a desegregation petition demanding desegregation in 1948, as well as, honoring descendants of other key players in the struggle for freedom and justice. Following the 3pm matinee performance on Sunday, February 21st, a special post show panel discussion, sponsored by The International African American Museum and moderated by College of Charleston Professor of History, Bernard Powers, will provide insights into the historical context of the story. The panel will include Dr. Jon Hale from the College of Charleston, Dr. Marcus Cox from the Citadel and Reverend Joseph A. Darby. In addition to the 3 weeks of public performances, more than 5,000 area school students will also attend special school day matinee performances including performances for the present day Clarendon County students, who go to school in Summerton, where this struggle for freedom and justice began. An exhibit of Civil Rights photographs taken by Cecil Williams, a native of Orangeburg and acclaimed photographer who captured the images of many of the players portrayed in The Seat of Justice, will be on exhibit during the run of The Seat of Justice.
THE PLAY Receiving a special recognition award in 2004 by the Charleston branch of the NAACP, Julian Wiles's The Seat of Justice is based on original transcripts from the Briggs v. Elliott case. The Seat of Justice is told through the eyes of the late Mrs. Ruby Cornwell, a Charleston civil rights leader who, until her death at the age of 100, was at the forefront of the struggle for justice and equality in Charleston. When the Briggs v. Elliott case was heard in Charleston, Mrs. Cornwell sat on the very front row for every day of the trial. One of the judges on the panel of three, J. Waties Waring was an outspoken advocate of Civil Rights and a friend to the struggle. Over time, Mrs. Cornwell became a close friend with Mrs. Waring, the Judge's wife who too was quite progressive and an outspoken critic of the current social order. When Mrs. Waring invited Mrs. Cornwell to her home for tea in the early 1950's, it was the first time that a black person had been invited as a guest to a white home in Charleston for a social occasion. Wiles interviewed Mrs. Cornwell prior to her death in 2003 to gain her insights on the case. His research also led him to conversations with Joseph DeLaine, Jr., son of The Rev. Joseph DeLaine, as well as, conversations with Joe Elliott, grandson of Roderick Elliott, the Chairman of the Clarendon Country School District 22 Board of Trustees.
GUEST ARTIST BIOS 
Crystin Gilmore

Crystin Gilmore

 Crystin Gilmore: An award-winning actress based in New York and born the daughter of a preacher and an educator from the outskirts of Memphis, Tennessee, Crystin found her love for performing in the church. She received a B.F.A. in Performance from the University of Memphis. Crystin's award-winning roles include Shug in The Color Purple at Playhouse on the Square and Speakeasy Stage Company ~Ostrander, IRNE and Arts Impulse Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Musical, playing Dottie Moffat in Caroline, Or Change ~Ostrander for Best Supporting Actress in a Musical at Playhouse on the Square, and Pearl in Black Pearl Sings! at Circuit Playhouse ~Ostrander Award for Best Lead in a Drama. A former member of Charleston Stage's Professional Resident Acting Company, she appeared on the stage at the Dock Street Theatre playing characters such as Motormouth Maybelle in Hairspray, Evilene in The Wiz, Peggy Clark in Blue and Momma Morton in Chicago, The Musical.  Recent credits include: Wanda in Beehive: The 60's Musical! at Greenbrier Valley Theatre, Sophia in The Clark Doll, A Bedtime Story at Manhattan Repertory Theatre and an Ensemble role in Summer Blue at the Theatre for a New City. Crystin currently lives in New York with her loving husband Jules.
Marvin Bell

Marvin Bell

 Marvin Bell:
Marvin Bell is making his debut appearance with Charleston Stage.  Most recently, he has appeared as Hoke in consecutive productions of Driving MIss Daisy at the Flat Rock Playhouse in Hendersonville, NC, and the Garage Theater Group in Teaneck, NJ, a role that won him a 2013 Broadway World nomination for 'Best Feature Actor in a Play' for his performance at the Playhouse on Park in West Hartford, CT. Additionally he has appeared as Doaker in August Wilson's The Piano Lesson at the Cape Fear Theater in Fayetteville, NC, and as Jim Bono in Fences at the New Harmony Theater in New Harmony, IN.
Bell is originally from St. Louis, MO, where he appeared in several productions with The St. Louis Black Repertory Company. A veteran comedian with more than three decades of stand-up experience, Marvin treasures every opportunity to take on stage roles.
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
Playwright Julian Wiles is the Founder and Producing Artistic Director of Charleston Stage, Charleston, South Carolina's largest professional theatre company in residence at the Historic Dock Street Theatre. Wiles grew up on a cotton farm in Ft. Motte, South Carolina. He attended Clemson University, received a history degree from the College of Charleston in 1974 and an MFA in Dramatic Art from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1976. Wiles has written or adapted 27 original plays and musicals for the company, many of which are published and produced around the county. These include the boy who stole the stars, Nevermore! Edgar Allan Poe, the Final Mystery, The Seat of Justice, Denmark Vesey: Insurrection, Gershwin at Folly, Helium and most recently, Inga Binga. Wiles is a recipient of the 2010 Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Award, the highest honor in the arts awarded by the South Carolina Arts Commission. Wiles is also a member of the Dramatists Guild.
   
SPECIAL ENRICHMENT EVENTS  
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 from 5pm-10pm:
Special Continuing Legal Education night for South Carolina members of the Bar featuring a panel discussion by SC Supreme Court Chief Justice Costa M. Pleicones and featuring South Carolina Circuit Court Judge Clifton Newman and US District Judge Richard Gergel after the performance and includes a pre-show reception.
Saturday, February 20, 2016 at 2pm:
A special private performance for the descendants of the original petitioners and key players in the Briggs v. Elliott case followed by a reception sponsored by the College of Charleston's Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture.
Sunday, February 21, 2016:
Following the 3pm matinee performance on Sunday, February 21st, a special post show panel discussion, sponsored by The International African American Museum and moderated by College of Charleston Professor of History, Bernard Powers, will provide insights into the historical context of the story.  The panel will include Dr. Jon Hale from the College of Charleston, Dr. Marcus Cox from the Citadel and Reverend Joseph A. Darby.
February 23 and March 1, 2016 at 9:30am:
Students from Clarendon County will be attending special school day matinees of The Seat of Justice.
BACKGROUND INFO  
THE SEAT OF JUSTICE CHRONICLES SOUTH CAROLINA'S UNIQUE ROLE IN THE LANDMARK BROWN V. SCHOOL BOARD DESEGREGATION DECISION
The Seat of Justice tells the remarkable true story of how a group of concerned parents in rural Clarendon County, South Carolina in the late 1940's and early 1950's brought a series of lawsuits asking for fair treatment in their public schools. One of these suits, Briggs v. Elliott was the first lawsuit in the country demanding desegregation of the public schools. This case would be combined with 4 other cases to become the lead case in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education lawsuit. Thurgood Marshall, lead attorney for the NAACP, came to South Carolina to represent the children and their parents in this case. The first trial was held at the Federal Courthouse in Charleston in March, 1948.
The play's narrator is the late Mrs. Ruby Cornwell, a leading civil rights advocate, who sat on the front row at this trial in Charleston. Mrs. Cornwell passed away in 2003 at the age of 100, having shared her story with journalists, historians and playwright Julian Wiles, who is the author of The Seat of Justice.
The play tells the story of the many brave people who came forward to risk their lives, their liberty and their sacred honor in the pursuit of social justice. Notable among these were Levi Pearson, who brought the first suit in 1947. For his trouble, he found it difficult afterwards to find anyone to gin his cotton. Another leader in this case, the Reverend Joseph A. De Laine, a teacher and preacher in Clarendon County and a leader in organizing the plaintiffs for the case, was subsequently fired from his teaching job plus saw his church and home burned to the ground. Later, after shots were fired into his home, he fled the state of his birth...never to return. Harry Briggs, an auto mechanic who was first to sign the parents petition and thus his name leads in the case of Briggs v. Elliott, was later fired from his job of 15 years. Through the struggles of Pearson, Briggs, De Laine and scores of others, the landmark Brown v. Board of Education case would eventually strike down the flawed concept of "separate but equal" and bring a new birth of freedom and opportunity to millions of American children.
TIMELINE: Briggs v. Elliott and the journey to Brown v. Board of Education
1942: The Rev. J. A. De Laine, a resident, active pastor and elementary school principal in Clarendon County, helped form the Clarendon County branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
June 1947: During a summer school session at Allen University in Columbia, De Laine was greatly inspired by James Hinton, Executive Director of the State Conference of the NAACP, who argued that black residents needed to go to court to get school buses for their children.
1947: Seventeen parents of the Davis Station community purchased a bus for the transportation of their children to the Scott's Branch High School in Summerton. Maintenance and operational costs were expensive and the parents could not afford the upkeep so they decided to ask the county to help with these costs. They turned to community leader, pastor and elementary school principal, the Rev. J. A. De Laine to make their case. De Laine approached Roderick Elliott, the school board chairman, who turned down their request. Nearby, the newly completed white high school in the county had a brand new fleet of buses for their students.
March 1948: Inspired by the Rev. James Hinton, now state president of the NAACP, and the Rev. De Laine, who had helped found the Clarendon County NAACP chapter, Levi Pearson a farmer from the rural Davis Station area of Clarendon County filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of his three children. He was represented by the NAACP's legal team, Harold Boulware from the state office and Thurgood Marshall from the national office. In court, Boulware and Marshall argued that Pearson's children suffered "irreparable damage" because they did not have the access to good and safe transportation enjoyed by the county's white children. The case faltered on a technicality: since Pearson's farm straddled two separate school districts, the state was able to show that Pearson paid taxes in one district but his children actually attended school in another district. The legal team had no choice but to withdraw the suit.
January 1949: De Laine and Pearson attended the NAACP state conference meeting in Charleston to bring attention to the plight of black schools in Clarendon County and to seek support for further litigation to alleviate these conditions. Harold Boulware urged them to meet again with Thurgood Marshall to discuss a new suit.
March 1949: The Rev. De Laine, the Rev. J. W. Seals and five members of the Pearson family met with Marshall in Columbia. An agreement was reached at this meeting that the NAACP would entertain the development of a new federal lawsuit to demand not only school bus funds but also the full "equalization of educational opportunity" in Clarendon schools for black children.
April 1949: Led by the Rev. De Laine and others, meetings were held at four locations around Clarendon County to explain the proposed litigation to the black community and to identify potential plaintiffs.
May 1949: Since Clarendon County had many school districts at the time, Marshall and his team suggested the case be narrowed to one district. They chose Clarendon County School District No. 22, since it had separate white and black high schools-the Scott's Branch High School for black students and Summerton High School for white students.
November 1949: A petition was circulated in the community seeking the full "equalization of educational opportunities" for all the children of Clarendon County. Ultimately, 107 signatures of parents and children filled this petition. Turned down again by the Clarendon County School Board, Marshall and his team filed a new federal lawsuit in the US District Court in Charleston. The case was assigned to Federal Judge Waties Waring, a Charleston native who had grown up with the customs and norms of segregated South Carolina society. But some years earlier, after presiding over the Isaac Woodward case in 1947, he had become a stalwart defender of equal rights. Isaac Woodward, after being honorably discharged from the United States Army in 1946 and still in his uniform, was on a bus heading to his home. When the bus stopped in Aiken, SC, Woodward had an altercation with the white bus driver when Woodward asked for time to use the restroom before the bus left. The driver waited but was livid. At the next stop in Batesburg, SC, the irate driver had Woodward dragged from the bus and arrested by the town police chief, Linwood Shull. During the night, Shull brutally beat and blinded Woodward. A national outcry followed the news of this brutal attack and when the state of South Carolina refused to act, a Federal case was brought against Chief Shull. Judge Waring, from a prominent Old Charleston family, presided. At the trial, the US Attorney presented a half-hearted case and the all-white jury quickly cleared Shull. (Blacks at the time were precluded from serving on juries). The case, however, transformed Judge Waring. He began to look at, what at the time was called "the race question," in new ways. He later wrote, "I was shocked by the hypocrisy of my government...in submitting that disgraceful case....". Over the next few years, to the consternation of the South Carolina legal establishment, Waring became a stalwart defender of equal rights. In 1947, he ruled that the state had to pay black and white teachers equally. In 1948, when the state Democratic Party alleged it was a private club and could deny ballots to black voters, Waring ordered their primaries open to all...regardless of race.
July 1950: A new suit narrowed the case to just 20 plaintiffs-each plaintiff a parent of a child attending school in Clarendon County District 22. This second petition, with these 20 names, was prepared. When this too was turned down by the school board, yet a new case was filed in Charleston, this one dramatically taking segregation head-on. It demanded the elimination of segregated facilities in the public schools of Clarendon County. The case would be known as Briggs v. Elliot, the first desegregation case filed America. The case was named for Harry Briggs, alphabetically the first name on the new petition and for R. M. Elliott, Chairman of Clarendon County District 22 School Board. Because the case would be focusing on constitutional issues, a panel of Federal Judges was assigned with two additional judges joining Judge Waring.
1951: Realizing the inequality of the black schools in South Carolina, Governor Jimmy Burns moved to pre-empt the federal lawsuit. At his urging, the South Carolina Legislature passed a three percent sales tax (the state's first) to build and update schools. By updating facilities, the state hoped to soon be in a position to argue that schools were separate and equal for black and white students. At the same time, legislation was passed to block state aid to any public school that became integrated.
February 1951: The State of South Carolina, bringing its full legal forces to bear, entered the case on behalf of Clarendon County.
March 1951: With tensions high because of the pending lawsuit, Rev. De Laine's home in Summerton was destroyed by fire. Arson was suspected but never proved.
May 28, 1951: The three-judge panel heard the Briggs v. Elliott arguments in Charleston. In the opening statements by Robert Figg, the attorney for the state of South Carolina, he surprisingly conceded to the court that the state realized that separate school facilities in the state were not yet equal but argued the state's school sales tax and new building program would soon rectify that and make the pending case moot. The court, however, decided that the plaintiffs could still make their case and it moved forward.
June 23, 1951: At the end of the trial, though all three judges agreed the schools were not equal for black and white children in the state, Judges John J. Parker and George Bell Timmerman agreed to give the state time to rectify this condition and noted that, "it is a late day" to call segregation unconstitutional. Judge J. Waites Waring, however, firmly disagreed with his colleagues by issuing a fiery dissent concluding that "segregation per se is inequality" and is blatantly unconstitutional.
July 1951: Using Judge Waring's dissent as the basis for their argument, Marshall and his team appealed the case to the United States Supreme Court. While Waring's dissent would help move the case forward, personally Waring and his wife, Elizabeth, were totally ostracized from Charleston Society. Their strong political beliefs and their recent remarriage (they were both divorcees-a scandal in conservative Charleston) led them from Charleston to New York where they resettled. Before departing Charleston, after a long and distinguished career, Judge Waring retired from the bench.
January 28, 1952: The Supreme Court returned the Briggs case to the Federal District Court in Charleston to review a progress report filed by Clarendon County. At this hearing, Clarendon County school officials reported that they were planning to build three new schools for black students and that they had equalized teacher salaries, equipment and curricula plus buses were now being provided to black students. They argued that the county's separate facilities for black and white students would soon be equal and the case should be dismissed.
March 13, 1952: The new three-judge panel ruled in favor of the county school board. Judge Armistead M. Dobie, having replaced the retired Waring, made the ruling unanimous. But Thurgood Marshall and his legal team did not give up. Once more, they appealed this new Briggs v. Elliott ruling to the United States Supreme Court, again arguing that "separate but equal" was unconstitutional and, in and of itself, harmful to black students.
November 1952: Governor Burns took action to further the state's case. He engaged John Davis, the nation's most respected appellate attorney, to make South Carolina's case before the Supreme Court. At the next election, at the urging of Governor Byrnes, a majority of South Carolinian eligible voters (most black voters at the time were disenfranchised) approved an amendment to the state constitution ending the requirement of a public school system for the children of South Carolina. This raised the specter that if the "separate but equal" doctrine was struck down by the Supreme Court, the state might totally abandon the public schools in South Carolina.
December 9, 1952: The US Supreme Court heard South Carolina's Briggs vs. Elliott case, the nation's first desegregation case, which had now been consolidated with four other cases: Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County (filed in Virginia), Gebhart v. Belton (filed in Delaware), Bolling v. Sharpe (filed in Washington D.C.) and Brown v. Board of Education, (filed in Topeka, Kansas). On this date, oral arguments began. Though Briggs was the first case filed and alphabetically should be first (tradition being the case which the combined cases were expected to be named) the case, instead, would be known in history under the name of the Kansas Case, Brown v. Board of Education, Topeka. Some said the court made this choice so as not to focus on the South, choosing a western state instead. But the Briggs case remained the lead case and the one that Thurgood Marshall himself argued before the court.
June 8, 1953: In a somewhat unusual move, the Supreme Court asked the litigants to reargue the case the next year, this time asking the litigants to focus on the intent of Congress when passing the 14th Amendment and the state's understanding of this amendment when ratified. Much of the case hinged on the "equal protection" clause of this amendment.
May 17, 1954: The US Supreme Court ruled unanimously in favor of Briggs vs. Elliott and the other plaintiffs. Reading the unanimous decision from the bench, Chief Justice Earl Warren dramatically announced that the nine-member Supreme Court found that the law "separate but equal" and the segregation of public schools to be unconstitutional. In doing so, the court struck down the long held precedent of "separate but equal" set forth in the 19th century Plessy v. Ferguson ruling.
April 11, 1955: At the court's request, the plaintiffs returned to the Supreme Court once more to present arguments as to how the Brown ruling should be enforced-whether the states should desegregate immediately or use some gradual approach.
May 31, 1955: The Supreme Court ruled that states must move to desegregate their schools with all "deliberate speed."
October 1955: Retribution continued against the Briggs v. Elliott plaintiffs. Sharecroppers were forced off their land and plaintiffs lost their jobs. After two months of vandalism and harassment, the Rev. De Laine (now living in Lake City, SC) was told to leave town or suffer the consequences. Soon after, De Laine's church, St. James, was completely destroyed by arson.
Midnight, October 10, 1955: Three separate volleys of gunfire were directed into the Rev. De Laine's residence by passing automobiles. The third time the shots were fired, De Laine shot back, allegedly injuring more than one occupant in the automobiles. De Laine and his family fled in the dead of night, making their way to New York City. The State of South Carolina issued a warrant for De Laine's arrest, alleging he was at fault and charging De Laine with "assault and battery with the intent to kill." The State of New York, however, refused to extradite De Laine.
Late 1950's/Early 1960's: Legislatures in South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and Virginia adopted resolutions declaring the Brown v. Board decision "null, void and no effect." Later they passed additional resolutions delaying legislation such as "Freedom of Choice" provisions that allowed black students to attend white schools only if there was "room" in the white schools.
1963: With States and school districts continuing to defy the Supreme Court's ruling, a new Federal desegregation case was filed in Charleston, nine years after the Brown case. The court ruled that Charleston schools must immediately admit 11 black students. The district then tried to use test scores to deny any further transfers.
Fall 1965: After still another federal court suit, Clarendon County schools were finally ordered to admit several black students to the all-white Summerton High School. Two years later to avoid further integration, Clarendon County's District 22 School Board voted to close all of the white schools in the district. Those schools have never reopened. White parents in Summerton formed their own white-only private academy abandoning the public schools.
1968: Judge J. Waites Waring died in New York. His body was returned to Charleston for internment. Hundreds of black citizens turned out to honor him while less than a half-dozen whites attended.
February 1970: Following more than 16 years of additional litigation, as the state of South Carolina sought to thwart school integration, the federal courts finally ruled that all South Carolina Public Schools must integrate not "with all deliberate speed" but immediately. The Greenville County school district complied with a court order and became the first district in the state to fully integrate. Other districts across the state complied as well. Soon many whites fled the public school system and segregation academies were established across the state.
August 1974: The Rev. De Laine died in Charlotte, NC, where he had lived since retiring in 1971.
October 10, 2000: The South Carolina Parole Board granted Rev. De Laine a posthumous pardon in response to those who had fired into his home and forcing him to flee the state in 1955.
April 11, 2014: Eric Holder, the first African American U.S. Attorney General and leaders of the Federal Bar unveiled a statue of Judge Waring on the grounds of the Federal Courthouse in Charleston. A movement continues to rename the courthouse in his honor.
SIGNERS OF THE FIRST PETITION
In 1949, in a series of meetings held at Liberty Hill Church and other locations around Clarendon County, 114 parents came forward to sign a petition asking the county school board for equal educational opportunities for their children. Many would face evictions from their homes, loss of their jobs and faced other retribution for their bravery and commitment to the cause.
(Listed in the order signed) Robert Georgia Jervine Georgia Carrie Georgia Charlie Georgia Gladys Hilton Joseph Hilton Gussie Hilton Roosevelt Hilton Henrietta Huggins Lila May Huggins Celestine Huggins Juanita Huggins Thomas Johnson Blanch Johnson Lillie Eva Johnson Ruby Lee Johnson Betty J. Johnson Bobby M. Johnson Preston Johnson, Jr. Raymond Lawson Harry Briggs Sr. Eliza Briggs Harry Briggs, Jr. Thomas Lee Briggs Reverdy Wells Francis Lawson Katherine Eliza Briggs Susan Lawson Thomas Gamble Henry Brown Thelma Brown Eva Brown Willie H. Brown Marion Brown Ethel Mae Brown Howard Brown Beatrice Brown James Brown Theola Brown Thomas Brown Euralia Brown Joe Morris Brown Onetha Bennett Hilton C. Bennett Willie Gibson Annie Gibson Maxine Gibson Harold Gibson Julia Gibson William Gibson, Jr. Billie S. Fleming Mary O. Lawson Hercules Bennett Eddie Lee Lawson Susan Ann Lawson Fredick Oliver Willie Oliver Mary Oliver Mose Oliver Leroy Oliver Mitchel Oliver Bennie Parson, Jr. Plummie Parson Celestine Parson Edward Ragin Sarah Ragin Shirley Ragin Delores Ragin Hazel Ragin Zelia Ragin Mable Ragin Rebecca Ragin Sarah Ellen Ragin William Ragin Glen Ragin Lucrisher Richardson Joseph Emmerson Wheeler Sherlie Wheeler Elane Richardson Emanuel Richardson Rebecca Richburg E. E. Richburg Rebecca I. Richburg Albert Richburg Lee Johnson Bessie Johnson Morgan Johnson Samuel Gary Johnson Lee Richardson James Richardson Charles Richardson Annie L. Richardson Dorothy Richardson Jackson D. Richardson Mary J. Oliver Daisy Oliver Louis Oliver, Jr. Esther F. Singletary Janie L. Fludd Henry Scott Irene Scott Mary Scott Sue Esther Hilton Bennie Lee Lawson Willie M. Stukes Gardenia Stukes Gardenia E. Stukes Louis W. Stukes Willie M. Stukes, Jr. Annie Lee Tindal Mary L. Bennett Lillian Bennett James Bennett Gilbert Henry
SIGNERS OF THE SECOND PETITION
Later, the NAACP legal team decided it would be best to have a new petition prepared that only included parents of children in schools in Clarendon County District 22. The following are parents who signed the second petition which is the one used in the Briggs v. Elliott litigation:
(Listed in the order signed) Harry Brigg Anne Gibson Moses Oliver Bennie Parson Edward Ragin William Ragin Lachrisha Richardson Lee Richardson James H. Bennett Mary Oliver William M. Stukes G.H. Henry Robert Georgia Rebecca Richburg Gabriel Tyndal Susan Lawson Frederick Oliver Onetha Bennett Hazel Ragin Henry Scott
ABOUT THE MUSIC
Music used in The Seat of Justice is drawn from authentic music of the period. We know, for instance, that at the mass meetings held in Clarendon County, used to rally support for the petition effort, that the hymn "Together Let Us Sweetly Live" (Jesus, Great Shepherd of the Sheep) was sung. In the play, this hymn and all other songs are sung in the traditional manner without accompaniment.
For a remarkable glimpse into the music and life of the period, the works of Guy and Candy Carawan are highly recommended. They recorded songs and conducted interviews on Johns Island in the early 1960's, just after the period of the play. Their book Ain't You Got a Tree of Life and the Nonesuch recording "Been in the Storm So Long" chronicle this remarkable treasure of authentic African-American music. Several tunes in the play are adapted from these sources. Later, many years after the story told in The Seat of Justice, it was Guy Carawan who introduced We Shall Overcome and later Eyes on the Prize to the Civil Rights movement. Both were collected from South Carolina sources. Because they came from a later period in the Civil Rights movement, they are not included in The Seat of Justice.
 
 
CHARLESTON STAGE'S THE SEAT OF JUSTICE FACT SHEET
 
Theatre
The Historic Dock Street Theatre (135 Church Street)
 
Performances:
February 17, 2016           W 5:00pm / *Event for Continuing Legal Education February 19, 2016           Fr/Opening Night 7:30pm
February 20, 2016           Sa 2:00pm / *Private Event for Descendants of Original Petitioners February 20, 2016           Sa 7:30pm
February 21, 2016           Su 3:00pm / *Special Post Show Panel Discussion
February 25, 2016          Th 7:30pm
February 26, 2016           Fr 7:30pm
February 27, 2016           Sa 7:30pm
February 28, 2016           Su 3:00pm
March 3, 2015           Th 7:30pm
March 4, 2015           Fr 7:30pm
March 5, 2015           Sa 7:30pm
March 6, 2015           Su 3:00pm
Prices:
Adult: $30.00 - $63.00
Seniors (60+): $28.00 - $63.00
Student: $25.00 - $63.00
 
Tickets Now On Sale:
Order by Phone (843) 577-7183
Order online at www.charlestonstage.com
Group Rates Available: Call Michelle Miller, Donor Relations Manager, at (843) 647-7363
Student Rush: College student tickets, with proof of valid ID, are $10.00 one hour before curtain (subject to availability)
THE SEAT OF JUSTICE Credits:
By Julian Wiles
Direction by Julian Wiles
Lead Title Sponsor: Fred E. Pittman, M.D.Associate Sponsor: Dr. Del and Linda Schutte
Supporting Sponsor: BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
THE SEAT OF JUSTICE Cast (In Alphabetical Order): CHARACTER  -  ACTOR Rev. J.A. De Laine  -  Marvin Bell* Fireman  -  Dwaine Bennett Mr. Sonny  -  Nathan Burke*** Supreme Court Clerk, Mr. Harrigan, Fire Chief  -  Pen Chance*** Judge Waties Waring  -  Victor Clark Mrs. Viola Pearson, YWCA Guest, Cora  -  Letty Clay Mrs. Elizabeth Waring  -  Beth Curley Jury Foreman, R.M. Elliott  -  Chad Estel Mrs. Ruby Cornwell  -  Crystin Gilmore** Daisy Pearson  -  Jailyn Harris Isaac  -  Moses lane States Attorney Figg, Rep Garrett  -  David Loar Levi Pearson, Dr. Kenneth Clark  -  Anthony McCutchen Thurgood Marshall  -  Henry Clay Middleton Robert Carter  -  Randolph Middleton Liza, YWCA Guest, Ensemble  -  Lisa Montgomery James Pearson, Issac Woodard  -  Malcolm Palmer**** Eloise Pearson  -  Kayla Peake Reverend McCord  -  Kent Reynolds*** Mrs. Elizabeth, Gossip  -  Maggie Saunders*** Silas, Mr. Howard Boulware  -  John Smalls Rosalee, Mrs. De Laine  -  Teresa Smith Sonnyboy  -  Tawes Wenz Harry Briggs  -  Adolphus F. Williams Harry Briggs, Jr.  -  Gregory Williams Levi Pearson, Jr.  -  Rormello Young * The Actor appears through the courtesy of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States. ** New York Guest Actor ** A Member of Charleston Stage's Professional Resident Acting Company **** A Member of Charleston Stage's Performance Troupe

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Revolutionary Quintet WindSync to Perform at St. Paul’s Episcopal Next Month

WILMINGTON, NC Nov. 30, 2015 – St. Paul’s Episcopal is pleased to present the WindSync wind quintet in concert on Friday, January 22nd at 7:30 p.m. in the sanctuary of St. Paul’s located at 16 N 16th Street, Wilmington. This is the second of five concerts in the 2015-16 Music at St. Paul’s Guest Artist Series. Tickets are $15. St. Paul's Episcopal Church To order your tickets today, call 910-762-4578 or visit www.spechurch.com/music. Hailed by the Houston Chronicle as “revolutionary chamber musicians,” WindSync is a fresh and energetic wind quintet internationally recognized for dramatic and engaging interpretations of classical music.  A winner of the 2012 Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh International Competition, this dynamic ensemble focuses on building a connection with audiences through adventurous programming and charismatic stage presence.  Critics and audiences alike rave about programs that expand the wind quintet repertoire with newly commissioned works written for WindSync as well as a wide array of original arrangements of classical masterworks. These five virtuoso players perform exclusively from memory and specialize in creative concerts that inspire and entertain audiences of all ages. REVIEWS: “…revolutionary chamber musicians…” ~ The Houston Chronicle “innovating…unconventional and exciting …” ~ KUHA-FM, Houston Public Radio “Savvy, smarts & sass…” ~ artsandculture.com “…extraordinary ability to connect with students, educators, administrators and parents in a powerful and meaningful way” ~ Young Audiences of Houston FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Ronnie Wise, Music Director of St Paul’s Episcopal Church 910-762-4578, music@spechurch.com

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Chamber Announces Winners for Taste of the Season

CHAMBER ANNOUNCES "BEST CUISINE" AWARDS FOR TASTE OF THE SEASON  HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC November 30, 2015 - The 26th annual Taste of the Season, presented by the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce on Friday, December 20th at the Country Club of Hilton Head, was well represented as over 27 chamber member area restaurants vied for the honors of "best cuisine." Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce The People's Choice votes for "best cuisine" have been tallied and the winners of this year's Taste of the Season announced. People's Choice for "best cuisine" was Michael Anthony's Cucina Italiana for Executive Chef Chris Johnson's "Veal Agnolotti with Butter Sage Sauce." Runner-up went to Red Fish for Executive Chef Sean Bescos' "Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Wild Mushroom & Piedmontese Ox Tail Ragout."  Best Decor was awarded to ELA's Blu Water Grille.

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Carolina Colonial Christmas Weekend Escape Dec. 11-13

Enter to Win a Weekend Getaway to Edenton, Bath and New Bern through Nov. 29
RALEIGH, NC Nov. 30, 2015 - Start your Christmas holiday with an outstanding weekend escape with all the best of Christmas past during a "Carolina Colonial Christmas" Dec. 11-13 at three North Carolina state historic sites. A groaning board in Historic Edenton, harpsicord music in Historic Bath, and fireworks at Tryon Palace in New Bern are a few of the highlights of this spectacular weekend. You can even enter to win this outing at https://www.facebook.com/NorthCarolinaCulture.
Tryon Palace in New Bern, NC

Tryon Palace in New Bern, NC

Friday afternoon visit Edenton, called the prettiest town in the South, to see a holiday table so heavily laden that it groans! Be sure to stop by the Roanoke River Lighthouse along Edenton Bay, the last of its kind still standing. You'll find wassail in Cupola House, "Caroling in the Courthouse," in the 1767 Chowan County Courthouse, quaint restaurants and shops and interesting inns within walking distance.
Leave Edenton Saturday for Bath, North Carolina's "First Town, First Port," and one time home to the notorious Blackbeard. Historic Bath tells the tale of politics and pirates in the shadow of the state's oldest extant church, St. Thomas Episcopal. Harpsichord music will highlight a morning of family activities in the Palmer Marsh House. Follow the smell of gingerbread to the Bonner House, where children will enjoy activities including a Children's Christmas Art Show in the 1921 Bath High School building.
Find you way to Tryon Palace Saturday afternoon, check in at your lodgings by 5 p.m. and have a nice early dinner in preparation for an evening of spectacle. Merriment, drama and romance will fill the air at the "35th Annual Candlelight Christmas Celebration." Travel back to 1733 at the home of colonial Gov. William Tryon, and experience the regal ball held for Princess Sophia Carolina Matilda. Join in the hunt for the eloped Elizabeth Stanley, take in the classic tale "A Visit from St. Nicholas" and enjoy an evening of fire-eating, circus acts, acrobatics and more. Top off the night with fireworks over the palace! Spend the night in New Bern and start Sunday with the warm glow of a weekend of wonder.
For additional information, please visit http://www.ncdcr.gov/colonialchristmas. The Division of State Historic Sites is within the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.
About the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources
The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state's natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina. Led by Secretary Susan Kluttz, NCDNCR's mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state's history, conserving the state's natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.
NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette's Pier, 39 state parks and recreation areas, the N.C. Zoo, the nation's first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit www.ncdcr.gov.

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The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum to host 5th Annual ‘Holiday at the Museum’ December 12

HATTERAS, NC Nov. 30, 2015 - Join The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum for “Holiday at the Museum” on Saturday, December 5 from 12 Noon to 5 p.m. Children and adults alike will marvel at Winter Wonderland train display by master model builder Charlie Klein. There will be a children’s holiday craft table and letters to Santa (almost certainly to receive a reply from Santa). Live entertainment will be provided by local choral groups, individual performances by local musicians as well as professional musical entertainment throughout the day. Refreshments will include a variety of hot soups, ham biscuits, holiday cookies and punch. There will be multi-themed fully decorated holiday trees, and shoppers will continue to receive an additional 5 percent off purchases when they bring a donation for the food bank. “This is our 5th annual Holiday at the Museum and is quickly becoming a holiday tradition,” stated Melanie Schwarzer, Administrative Director of the Friends of the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum. “The Museum's celebration of the Hatteras Island community and its resilience was begun to boost everyone's spirit after the devastation of Hurricane Irene” she said. The event is free to the public and is sponsored by the Friends of the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum. The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum is located at 59200 Museum Drive, Hatteras, NC 27943. For more information, call 252.986.2995. For more information, call the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum at 252-986-2995 or visit www.ncmaritimemuseums.com. The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum is located at 59200 Museum Dr., Hatteras, NC 27943.  The museum is open Monday - Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. from October through March. and until 5 p.m. mid-October through March. Free admission with donations appreciated.

The 5th Annual Holiday at the Museum takes place on December 12 at The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum.

The 5th Annual Holiday at the Museum takes place on December 12 at The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum.

  About the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum in Hatteras is named in honor of thousands of shipwrecks that sank off North Carolina’s coast. The Museum is dedicated to the preservation and presentation of the state’s coastal culture and maritime history, which includes these shipwrecks, this repository of history. The vessels are the centerpiece of rich relationships to piracy, war, (Revolutionary, Civil and World Wars I and II), lifesaving, commerce and coastal living. The Museum is filled with related artifacts, which include remnants of the earliest known shipwreck found in North Carolina waters, dating to 1650, objects from the USS Monitor, the Queen Anne’s Revenge, and the USS Huron.   The North Carolina Maritime Museum system is comprised of the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum in Hatteras, the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Beaufort and the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport. All three museums are part of the Division of State History Museums in the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.   About the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina. Led by Secretary Susan Kluttz, NCDNCR's mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.   NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette’s Pier, 39 state parks and recreation areas, the N.C. Zoo, the nation's first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit www.ncdcr.gov.

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Light Up the Night Christmas Parade in Historic Downtown Southport

SOUTHPORT, NC Nov. 30, 2015 - “Oh what fun it is to ride” (or watch) the annual Light Up the Night Christmas Parade in downtown Southport! Congressman David Rouzer will be the parade marshal this year in one of Southport’s most treasured traditions, sponsored by the Southport Fire Department. Starting at 6:30 on December 11, fire engines, classic cars, floats, bands, all decorated in Christmas lights will make their enchanted trek up Howe St. from the waterfront to the fire station where children will be treated by Santa himself. There will be a raffle for 3 children’s bicycles and a car seat, donated by the Southport Police Department. Light Up The Night Parade - Southport Date/Time: December 11, 6:30pm The public is invited to line both sides of Howe St. and enjoy this one of a kind parade, destined to be a holiday tradition. You don’t want to miss this festive community event! It’s not too late to sign up if you want to participate in the parade. Just go to the www.cityofsouthport.com website and click on the parade application link under events. It’s free! For more information, please contact: Joni Schinske Southport Tourism Department 910-477-1484

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Oyster Roast to Benefit Step Up for Soldiers

CAROLINA BEACH, NC Nov. 26, 2015 – A free oyster roast is planned to benefit Step Up for Soldiers, a local organization whose mission is to aid disabled veterans and their families. The event will take place 2pm to 5pm, Sunday, December 13, at Gibby’s Dock and Dine in Carolina Beach. The Mailbox Store, 6400 Carolina Beach Road, is sponsoring the event. Step Up For Soldiers While the roast is free, donations will be requested at the door. There will also be silent auction items and raffles. Oyster Roast Donation Sponsorships are available for anyone wishing to participate. Further information is available from The Mailbox Store, 910-399-8550.

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13th Annual 2015 “Festival of Trees”

Presented by Onslow Caregivers, Inc. “Helping patients of Onslow Home Health and Hospice” 2015 Festival of Trees Green Flyer (PDF) JACKSONVILLE, NC Nov. 9, 2015 - The Onslow Caregiver’s are looking for tree sponsors, silent auction items, country store items, sweets for the sweet shop and volunteers! Businesses, schools, civic groups, churches, families and individuals can sponsor or decorate trees. The Tree Festival is a Holiday tradition helping our neighbors in need and now building a community Hospice House is a new part of our mission. This community event is for everyone to help celebrate the spirit of Christmas! Thank you for your help!

Santa and reindeer - FOT

Mini Tree

Mini Tree

Saturday, November 21, 10am-7pm

Sunday, November 22, 11am-6pm

Monday, November 23, 8am-2pm (Children’s Day)

American Legion Building (Fairgrounds) 146 Broadhurst Rd, Jacksonville, NC 28540

Admission is $2.00 Donation

For more information call 910-324-1650 or jhcole@centurylink.net Submitted by Jean Cole, Coordinator “Festival of Trees”   Weekend Entertainment Director/Producer: TvStage Productions/Chris and Shelby Parr Sound and Lighting Equipment: Castle Productions/ Larry Salesfsky Special Thank You: Donna Pittman & Volunteers with Stage Set up & Tear-Down   Saturday, November 21, 2015
10:00 Opening Ceremony Jean Cole/Pastor Larry Haggard
10:15 Barbershop New River Barbershop Chorus
11:00 Soloist/Guitarist Clifton Everett
11:30 Line Dancing Forever Young/Linda Decker
12:00 Goldie Oldies Soloist Larry Kokocha
12:30 Elvis is in the Building Jay Barnes
1:00 Rural RFD TV stars Earl & John Jones
1:30 Multi-genre Soloist Michael Daughety
2:00 Recording Artist Veronica Whaley Garcia
2:30 "Soul" Music Tommy Snowdon
3:00 Excellent Pianist Tammy Zegelien Strickland
3:30 Pop and Show Tunes Kri s Burritt
4:00 Music in Action Dance Team Diana's Dance Studio
4:30 Miss Onslow County Allison Bennett
5:00 Dynamic Duo- Blue Grass Ollie and Ivy Morton
5:30 Homegrown sounds Back Porch Gut Bucket Band
6:00-6:30 Larry Salefsky DJ Holiday Music
Sunday, November 22,2015
11:00 Larry Salefsky DJ Holiday Music
12:00 Gospel and Christmas Soloist Tracey Whaley
12:30 Smooth and easy listening April Lanvermeier Sinkhorn
1:00 Whatever!!!! Chris and Shelby Parr
1:30 Motown ...gotta' love it The Conductors
2:30 Andrews Sisters Style Shelby Taylor Trio
3:00 Award winningguitarist Alex Bryan
3:30 So smooth Eldridge "Sandy" Sandridge
4:00 Patsy Cline / Loretta Lynn Pauline Smith
4:30 Elvis! Elvis! Elvis! Jay Barnes
Monday, November 23,2015
Senior Citizens and Children's Day Larry Salefsky, DJ Holiday Music 8:30-1
 

2015 “Festival of Trees” Sponsorship Information

Presented by Onslow Caregivers, Inc.…Caring for our Neighbors We invite you to invest your caring sponsorship to help us with our 13th Annual “Festival of Trees”. Your business, civic group, church, school, agency or individuals may help by donating support funds, food for the festival volunteers, sponsoring a tree, donating items for the Silent Auction, donating food items to be sold in Sweet Shop and items for the Gift Shop, Country Store or signing up as a Volunteer to help at the festival. We appreciate all donations and any type of help because the Festival is completely supported by our grassroots community involvement. In 2014 we began the immense process of accomplishing our additional vision to build a much needed Hospice House in Onslow County. For additional information on the planning of our community Hospice House check us out at www.hospiceonslownc.org.The Festival of Trees is a family-centered event, establishing an annual Christmas tradition in Onslow County with 4,000-5,000 attendees. This winter wonderland will feature: 65 creatively decorated Christmas trees, holiday displays showcasing community spirit, Special Military Displays, entertainment directed by TV & Stage Productions, Silent Auction, beautiful display of handmade quilts by the Pine Needle Quilt Guild, homemade breads, jams and honey, Santa for the child in all of us, great children activities, a Gift Shoppe/Country Store/Sweet Shoppe for all your Christmas giving, Mini Tree Contest, Crafts by Coastal Carolina Artists & Crafts Guild and kid-priced shopping in the Gingerbread House.The mission of Onslow Caregivers, Inc., a nonprofit organization, is to assure that patients in home health care and hospice programs in Jacksonville/Onslow County do not suffer additionally because they cannot obtain needed services. We provide support or materials such as food, medicine, transportation, shelter and additional medical special needs. Our volunteer organization helps with many of these unmet needs for these patients. As the home health workers care for their patients, they observe these significant needs. The unmet needs are provided by funds raised at the annual “Festival of Trees”. The 2015 festival will be held at the American Legion Building, Jacksonville, NC on Nov. 21 from 10am-8pm, Nov. 22 from 11am-6pm, and Nov. 23 from 8:30am-2pm is Children’s Day. Admission is a $2 donation. Join us in making this the best year ever! Thank you for caring for our neighbors. For more information on “Festival of Trees” at Festival of Trees 2015, Jacksonville, NC on Facebook and please call 910-324-1650 or jhcole@centurylink.net.Wee Little Tree Contest (now Mini Tree)

Festival Items Request

The Onslow Caregivers, Inc. presents the 13th Annual Festival of Trees! We are a non-profit 501 (3) (C) charity helping our neighbors, patients of Onslow Home Health and Hospice with financial donations for medical services, medicine, food and everyday life needs. In 2014 we began the immense process of accomplishing our community’s vision to build a hospice house in Onslow County. The festival will be held at the American Legion Building, Jacksonville, NC on Nov. 21 from 10am-8pm, Nov. 22 from 11am-6pm, and Nov. 23 from 8:30am-2pm is Children’s Day. Admission is a $2 donation.The Festival of Trees is a family-centered event, establishing an annual Christmas tradition in Onslow County. This winter wonderland will feature: creatively decorated Christmas trees, holiday displays showcasing community spirit, a special Military Display, entertainment directed by TV & Stage Productions, Silent Auction, beautiful display of Handmade quilts by the Pine Needle Quilt Guild, homemade breads, jams and honey, Santa for the child in all of us, great children activities presented by New Beginnings Childcare and Partnership for Children, a Gift Shoppe/Sweet Shoppe for all your Christmas giving, door prizes, crafts by Coastal Carolina Artists & Crafts Guild and kid-priced shopping in the Gingerbread House and the Jacksonville/Onslow Council for the Arts presentation of the “Wee Little Trees” Contest.Your business, civic group, church, school, agency or individuals may help by donating sponsorship funds for the festival, food for the festival volunteers (there are about 100 per day), sponsoring a tree, donating items for the Silent Auction, Gift Shop or General Store, donating food items to be sold in Sweet Shop and signing up as a Volunteer. We appreciate any donations and help because the Festival is completely supported by our grassroots community involvement. Onslow Caregivers, Inc. continues to work on future plans of a Hospice House for Onslow County with our community’s giving and caring spirit for our neighbors.For more information call 910-324-1650. Come on out and enjoy a holiday tradition to help our neighbors in need.

Onslow Caregivers, Inc. - Helping Our Neighbors

The mission of Onslow Caregivers, Inc., a nonprofit organization, is to assure that patients in home health care and hospice programs in Jacksonville/Onslow County do not suffer additionally because they cannot obtain needed services, support or materials such as food, medicine, transportation, shelter and additional medical special needs. We are a volunteer organization that helps with any of these unmet needs for these patients. As the home health workers care for their patients, they observe these significant needs. The unmet needs are provided by funds raised at the “Festival of Trees”, an annual event since 2002. This last year we began the immense process of accomplishing our additional vision to build a Hospice House in Onslow County. In this upcoming 2015 “Festival of Trees” we will continue to feature how the community can help in our vision to provide a much needed Hospice House in our community. Jean Cole, Coordinator of “Festival of Trees” Onslow Caregivers, Inc. & Onslow Hospice House Board Member

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Wilmington Ballet Company Proudly Presents The Nutcracker Dec. 19-20, 2015

Saturday, December 19 & Sunday, December 20 at 3pm Premiers at the New Cape-Fear Community College Humanities & Fine Arts Center With the Debut Performance of Wilmington’s First Professional Ballet Company With Master of Ceremonies WWAY News Anchor Daniel Seamans Wilmington, NC Oct. 30, 2015 –  Celebrate the Magic of the Season as the Wilmington Ballet Company brings to life the beloved classic ballet, The Nutcracker – Voted Encore Magazine’s Number 1 Best Theatrical Production in Wilmington for 2014! Tickets are on sale now for the Wilmington area’s grandest Nutcracker, which will performed at the new Cape-Fear Community College Humanities & Fine Arts Center! This will be Wilmington Ballet Company’s most spectacular Nutcracker ever with the debut performance of their new Professional Core Company, a historic achievement for the Wilmington area. Wilmington  Ballet - Nutcracker Grandeur and opulence are the watchwords for this full-length production, complete with a whopping 250 performers in the cast and over 600+ ornate costumes and professional artisan crafted sets. A rousing live-action battle scene between toy soldiers and the Mouse King’s army will make you gasp. A magical Mother Ginger character with a two-story dress and dancers scuttling from under her skirts will make you giggle. The 20-foot Chinese dragon and giant Russian nesting dolls are just a taste from the Land of Sweets to make you smile. Keaton Thomas, a Marine Corps Prior Active Duty Captain, returns as the beloved heroic Nutcracker; and Wilmington actor, Robin Dale Robertson will be portraying the mysterious Uncle Drosselmeyer – his 5th Nutcracker as Drosselmeyer! The role of Clara will be danced by Sydney Jones, a tenth grade student at Laney High School and student at the Wilmington School of Ballet.  Stacey Slichter, North Atlanta Dance Theater as Sugar Plum Fairy; and Adam Schiffer, Carolina Ballet as the Cavalier. Over a dozen spectacular guest dancers from the North Atlanta Ballet Theater, Carolina Ballet, and the Wilmington Ballet Company’s own new Professional Core Company dazzle, as do the many local youth dancers. Including performers from Wilmington School of Ballet & Dance, Babs McDance, Techniques in Motion School of Dance, Techmoja Dance and Theater Company, Southside Dance Center, Pleasure Island Dance Company, Gymnastics Unlimited, Kathy Snow Productions, and the Eugene Ashley High School NJROTC Sword Team and Color Guard. Sponsored by WWAY, Wilmington Parent, Landfall Foundation, Wilmington Arts Council (NC Arts Council Grassroots Grant), Cumulus Broadcasting, and Cape Fear Formal Wear.

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New River Community Church of God Blood Drive Nov. 17th

Sneads Ferry, NC Oct. 30, 2015 - The New River community Church of God will be holding a Red Cross Blood Drive on Tuesday, November 17, 2015 from 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm in  the Gymnasium.

New River Community Church of God - Sneads Ferry, NCPlease donate blood in memory of Josiah Allen.

To schedule an appointment please visit http://www.redcrossblood.org and use the sponsor code: NewRiverCommunityCofG. New River community Church of God 117 Wheeler Creek Road Sneads Ferry, NC 28460 (910) 327-6624

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