Sunday, August 03, 2014

Upcoming events in the Asheville area this week

Photo from Channel Islam International


“Cash Crop” is an emotionally moving and historical glimpse of the bondage endured by more than 15 million slaves during the trans-Atlantic slave trade by sculptor Stephen Hayes. The exhibition, which features 15 life-size sculptures of human beings in shackles, invites viewers to enter an emotional, physical, and psychic space to confront the past, present, and future. Admission is $6 for adults, free for students through 12th grade. This will run until August 27, 2014. Location is Ray Auditorium at the YMI Cultural Center at 39 South Market Street in Asheville. For more information please contact Sharon at 

Join folks from across the region and state for another energizing and inspiring Mountain Moral Monday - “Moral March to the Polls Rally” on August 4, from 5-6:30 PM at Pack Square Park in downtown Asheville. The Mountain People’s Assembly, a coalition of WNC organizations, and regional WNC NAACP Branches, will host the return of Mountain Moral Monday, a non-partisan program that will highlight the destructive policies enacted by the N.C. statehouse over the past year while strongly focusing on the voter empowerment campaign, “Moral March to the Polls.” The event will feature Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President of the NC NAACP and other guest speakers, as well as musical entertainment. Westsound and blues and jazz great Kat Williams will headline the musical part of the rally.  In addition, there will be opportunities for participants to get involved in voter registration, education and Get-Out-The-Vote (GOTV) efforts during the current mid-term election cycle. ‘Moral Freedom Summer’ Organizers and volunteers will be available to help register voters. To sign on as a supporter or for more information, email info@mountainmoralmonday.

Time is 9:30 AM to 12 PM, and location is Atlanta Bread at 484 Hendersonville Road in Asheville. In the spirit of the Moral Monday energy and events, Aim Higher Now NC (Buncombe County office) is spearheading an interaction of public school supporters for networking and solidarity. Please join us each Monday until the start of school from 9:30 until noon at Atlanta Bread (484 Hendersonville Road). Together we will channel support and volunteer action, with the shared goal of public school affirmation! Even if you only have a few minutes, please drop by!

This will be held at the Land of the Sky Shrine Club at 39 Spring Cove Road in Swannanoa. Time is 2 PM to 4 PM. This is followed by a meeting at Lake Lure Fire Department on Memorial Highway in Lake Lure at 6 PM. Not much notice on this one - got an email late this afternoon. 

This will be on the first floor conference room at Asheville City Hall. Time is 3:30 PM to 5 PM. 

National Night Out is a great chance to meet neighbors, officers, and deputies and talk about effective community policing and making neighborhoods safer. It's also a great time to have fun at Carrier Park! Time is 5:30 to 7:30 PM. This is organized by the City of Asheville.

On each Tuesday until the start of school, BCAE members are invited to drop by the beautiful office of our chapter for coffee and conversation. Between 9:30 AM and noon, please contribute your thoughts and support for public school with other BCAE members. The office is located at 31 College Place, Bldg. D, Suite 212 (not far from down town); representatives from Aim Higher Now NC will also attend to participate in fostering strength for NC public schools. Please join us.

Sierra Club, WNC Alliance, and Green Drinks will present "Birds around the World" with Simon Thompson, world renown birding expert, at Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 1 Edwin Pl. on Charlotte in Asheville. Contact Judy for more information at or call 828-683-2176.

You are invited/requested to join the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance on Wednesday, August 6, at the Y12 Nuclear Weapons Complex in Oak Ridge for the annual Names and Remembrance Ceremony commemorating the destruction of Hiroshima, Japan. We need readers who will share in the ceremony—names of those who perished in the bombing, first-hand accounts of the destruction, statements and commentary by leaders at the time.
On August 6, 1945, the United States destroyed Hiroshima, Japan with the world’s first nuclear weapon. It is important that we bear witness to this atrocity in Oak Ridge; the atomic bomb Little Boy was fueled with highly enriched uranium produced at the Y12 Plant in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Sixty-nine years later, on August 6, 2014, a Names and Remembrance Ceremony across from the entrance to the Y12 Nuclear Weapons Complex will remember the destruction of Hiroshima. The ceremony will begin at 6 AM and continue until 9 AM with a time of silence at 8:15 AM, the time of the detonation of Little Boy. You can come for all or part of the reading; we take turns reading a page from the book of remembrance and hanging peace cranes. Participation in the reading is entirely voluntary—you can come to simply join us in a vigil of witness if you choose. If you have questions, please contact Ralph Hutchison by email at or 865 776 5050.

MABCO and the Unitarian Universalist Church Swannanoa Valley are co-sponsoring a free documentary series and the final showing will be of “The Story of Citizens United v. FEC”. Learn about the nationwide campaign to amend the Constitution to return corporations to their earlier state when they were not given the rights of citizens, when money wasn’t speech and when Congress could regulate money in politics. Sponsored by Move to Amend Buncombe County, and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley Social Action. Two videos: Citizens United vs. FEC and Citizens United in North Carolina.The films will be shown at the church, located at 500 Montreat Road in Black Mountain.  Doors open at 6:30 PM and the showing starts at 7 PM. Free of charge. This was posted on Facebook under “Move to Amend Video Series”.

There will be a comedy night at the Marshall Depot at 282 South Main Street in Marshall. Time is 8 PM. Tickets to this event will benefit Neighbors in Need Food Shelf. $10/$6 ages 5 to 18.

Time is 9:30 AM to 5 PM.  Location is Earthaven Ecovillage in Black Mountain. Class features Lee Walker Warren speaking about the Three-Legged Stool of Sustainability, which looks deeply at the social, environmental and economic factors necessary for sustainable and alternative projects to succeed.  In the afternoon Diana Leafe Christian will lead an interactive discussion onThree Aspects of a Healthy, Thriving Community, and How to Recognize and Prevent “Structural Conflict”. Registration required. To find out how to register, or for more information, contact: NikiAnne at (828) 664-0268.

The Traveling Bonfires presents Bonfire for Peace at Prichard Park in Asheville. This is a free concert event for the family and the community, featuring Peace Jones, Pipapelli, Lyric, and Riyen Roots. Time is 4 PM to 9 PM. The Traveling Bonfires roam the country, ushering arts and music events and bringing people together in celebration of peace and multicultural connectedness. For more info, call Marta at 828-280-2309 or email

Hello friends, this is a special invite to Authentic Sustainability: Pitfalls, Pathways and Paradox in Conversation for a Better World:) Time is 2 to 5 PM and location is in downtown Asheville. WNC Frack Free University proudly brings you a special workshop for core-organizers only.  This is a collaborative event between WNC Frack Free and the Creative Facilitators. There are only 30 spots so RSVP now.  Contact Ty for more information, including how to register, at

Time is 7 PM and location is North Asheville Library. Call Ruth at 232-2883 or email for more information.

The movie “Gasland 2” will be shown by the SCCAF – Swain County Coalition Against Fracking. They are presenting a series of educational movies on the dangers of hydraulic fracturing. The Coalition urges everyone to come view this extraordinary documentary depicting what happens to our environment and property values if fracking is forced on  upon good citizens like us. Community awareness and involvement is much needed. Free. This will be held at the Nantahala Brewery on Depot Street in Bryson City at 7 PM.

Time is 6 PM to 8 PM and program TBA. Dinner will be at the new Green Sage in Westgate Mall next to Earth Fare in Asheville. For more information, contact Cheryl at 828-776-3327.

Dan Gaddis is the Director of Sustainability and Energy Management at a global real estate technology corporation called RealPage, Inc. where he focuses on saving RealPage partners revenue while creating operational efficiencies through energy management and sustainability systems and solutions. Dan also drives sustainability at RealPage, allowing the company to further its Green offerings internally and externally. Socializing starts at 5:30 PM and presentation starts at 6 PM. Location is Posana Cafe at 1 Biltmore Avenue in downtown Asheville.

An anti-fracking group is forming in Jackson County. Bettie Ashby of Dillsboro said an organizational meeting would be held at 7 PM in the community room at the Jackson County Library. Ashby said she’s aware of at least 10 to 14 people who are interested in participating in organized opposition; the meeting next month, in part, is to gauge the level of interest in this community. The group must decide whether to affiliate with the Coalition Against Fracking in Western North Carolina. The drawback, according to Ashby, is the umbrella coalition’s nonprofit status would prevent political campaigning by a local group. “We didn’t feel like we should make these decisions for everyone,” said Ashby, who is organizing the effort with her sister, Ann Dunn. For more information, call 828-331-1397.

Come join the Asheville branch of the International Socialist Organization as we discuss the long history of US imperialism, through war and occupation, in the Middle East. We will meet on ground level of the Pack Memorial Library in Asheville. Time is 6 PM. This event is hosted by Asheville Socialists. Information came from Facebook.

Free Energy Conservation Workshop and Weatherization Services offered by Buncombe County Cooperative Extension Center at 94 Coxe Avenue in Asheville. Qualify for $800 in home weatherization services (must own home, built prior to 2006 and less than 2200 sq. ft.; home owner pays $100 and the rest ($700) is covered by NC Cooperative Extension office)! Time is 6:30-8:00 PM. For more information including how to register, contact Justin at

We cordially invite you to join us for Our VOICE’s 40th Anniversary Celebration, 40 Years of Starting Conversations featuring keynote speaker Anita Hill, Brandeis University Professor of Law. Ms. Hill started a national conversation by disclosing her experience of workplace sexual harassment which focused the country’s attention on a difficult topic often met with avoidance and silence. Welcome Reception starts at 6 PM / Program starts at 7 PM. Location is Diana Wortham Theatre in Asheville. You can purchase tickets online or at Our VOICE, Malaprops and aSHEville Museum. For more information regarding our event, please contact us at


Veterans for Peace have a weekly vigil at 5 PM at Pack Square, Vance Monument

Haywood Peace Vigils have a weekly vigil at 4 PM at Haywood County Courthouse in Waynesville

Asheville Homeless Network meeting at 1 PM at A-Hope on North Ann Street in Asheville.  
Youth Outright Poetry Night at United Church of Christ in Asheville at 5 PM

Women in Black have a weekly vigil at noon at the City Hall in Hendersonville
Women in Black have a monthly vigil at 5 PM at Vance Monument in Asheville (first Friday only)

Transylvanians for Peace and WNC Physicians for Social Responsibility have a weekly vigil at noon in front of the courthouse in Brevard
Third Saturdays – Asheville’s Green Grannies invites the public to “sing for the climate” at Vance Monument at 5 PM.

Youth OUTright meeting from 4 to 6 PM at First Congregational United Church of Christ at 20 Oak Street in Asheville. Ages 14 - 23 only.


I am getting some folks in Asheville together to help make it easier to have fun and do good at the same time.  To do so, I've laid out an outline for creating a series of resources, services, and events that will all have a short-term direct impact, as well as a cumulative impact of helping local non-profit, social justice, and environmental justice organizations achieve their missions. I have several about ready to go, and am excited to incorporate your ideas in as well. I'm not sending all of the details now, because a five page email would scare most people off. If you want a little more, you can read the (tentative) mission, vision, and strategy which is below.

If you want to learn even more, or think you might be interested in any way, please take two minutes to fill out this four question survey. [To access the survey, contact Ken at email below.] There are tons of ways (big and small, now and later) that folks can help, so don't be worried if you don't have a lot of extra time, the survey will just let me know what to contact you about, even if it's just for the really fun parts! Thanks for your time.
In solidarity, Ken

(Tentative) Mission: (Name to be determined) aims to help all of our local non-profit, social justice, and environmental justice organizations to be more effective in reaching their missions. At first, this may seem too broad of a goal, but it actually is quite targeted. The specific mission is to fix the one problem that almost all organizations struggle with, lack of support.

(Tentative) Vision: We see among our friends, family, and neighbors, that the majority of people are good-hearted; they are caring and want to help others. The major barrier to greater community involvement is not apathy, it is more often lack of direction, lack of social support to make getting started easier, or thinking that their actions won't change anything.

The resources we create, services we provide, and our continued outreach, will aim to help break down these barriers by giving clear direction on how to help, building social support networks, showcasing the progress that is being made, and making it fun. Greater awareness of what is already happening, and increased involvement creating more progress, will generate a critical mass of people who are not only good-hearted, but are inspired, supported, and have a clear path to make a difference together. We take inspiration from Howard Zinn's call to action: "We don't have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world."

(Tentative) Strategy: To reach this goal, we will build a coalition website to increase collaboration between allied organizations, provide free tools and services to facilitate that process, and make it easier for new supporters to get involved. The initial launch of the website will start with two main resources, with additional resources and services being added over time.

The first resource will be an expansive directory of local allied organizations, which will include mission, vision, and contact information (for specific purposes: volunteering, donation/fund-raising, media requests, etc). Once compiled, the directory will be made available online, sent to all allied organizations, and heavily promoted. This directory will meet the objective of increasing collaboration by creating awareness of overlapping missions, and potential for allied organizations to work together. It will also meet the objective of mobilizing public support by making it easy for potential supporters to find organizations. In keeping with the push for collaboration, all allied organizations will be strongly encouraged to use the directory to work with each other, and to promote the directory as an easy way for good-hearted people to find an organization that they are passionate about.

The second resource will be a combined event calendar, featuring events from all of the allied organizations. This resource will meet multiple objectives. First, it will increase collaboration between allied organizations by making it easy for them to check the calendar before scheduling their own event, creating less competition for attendees, as well as more opportunity for combining and co-sponsoring events. Second, it will mobilize public support by providing good-hearted people with the incredible ease of having one calendar to check when they want to find a positive impact event to attend. Third, it will bring community members together more frequently, building relationships and sense of community and belonging that will drive more dedication to the community. Of course, this resource will also be heavily promoted, helping to draw more people to events where they can support the organization and learn about more ways to get involved.

The first service will be production of fun, social, appealing events for allied organizations. This resource will meet the following objectives:
* Increase cross organization support, build community, and prevent burnout of organizers.
* Offer fun, easy ways for attendees to get involved in something positive for their community.
* Generate revenue and new audiences for non-profit and community organizations.
* Generate revenue, new customers, and improved brand reputation for local businesses.

Much more to come. I have seven more pages written out, and am actively seeking the input of those who will be working on this with me.

His name is Ken Braley, and his email is Please contact him if you are interested in this project.


FROM FRACK-FREE NC: Public Hearings on Oil and Gas Rules in August/September!

August 20, Raleigh, 10 AM to 2 PM, McKimmon Center, NC State Univ.
August 22, Sanford, 5 PM to 9 PM, Dennis Wicker Center, 1801 Nash St.
August 25, Reidsville, 5 PM to 9 PM, Rockingham County High School
September 12, Culhowee, 5 PM to 9 PM Western Carolina Univ.
Public hearings coming up next month are a critical opportunity for the public to weigh in on the Mining and Energy Commission’s draft Oil and Gas rules. To stay up to date on developments in NC and elsewhere on fracking and to learn more about the rules and key issues for comments, please sign up for “FrackUpdates.”

Don’t miss your chance to speak out for a Frack Free NC and stand for strong, protective regulations to protect us all! Click here for our resource page on the upcoming hearings.


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