• Laurel Contributor

Barn Dance & Barbecue

by Katie Tims

Mountain Youth Charities’ Third Annual Barn Dance and Barbecue is a jubilant evening to kick up your heels, swing to some tasty mountain music, and do some remarkable things for local children – August 2 at Sawyer Family Farmstead in Glenville.

In the mountains, it doesn’t get any better! A summer evening filled to the brim with Grammy award-winning progressive bluegrass music, savory barbecue and dancing at one of North Carolina’s favorite historic farms – it’s all at Mountain Youth Charities’ Third Annual Barn Dance and Barbecue, on Friday, Aug. 2, from 6:00 -10:30 P.M.. at Sawyer Family Farmstead in Glenville.

Asheville group Songs From The Road Band is one of the best at blending the traditional bluegrass and contemporary country music styles. The result is amazing! The talented foursome is comprised of mandolin player Mark Schimick, who soared to the top of the progressive and jamgrass scene alongside legends Larry Keel, Vassar Clements and Tony Rice; Sam Wharton, singing lead and harmony vocals, a musician who developed his picking chops in the music halls of Telluride, Colorado; bass player Charles R. Humphrey III, an IBMA award and Grammy recipient and member of the North Carolina Musical Hall of Fame; and James Schlender, two-time National Fiddle Player Champion and an amazing harmony singer. Be sure to visit songsfromtheroadband.com to learn more about the band and to see their latest video of hit song “Road To Nowhere.”

“Songs From The Road Band plays all over the country, and we are so lucky to have them featured at the this year’s barn dance,” said Marcia Shawler, president of Mountain Youth Charities. “They’re going to play, play, play, and we’re all going to dance, dance, dance!”

Sawyer Family Farmstead is a family-owned-and-operated Christmas tree farm that overlooks Lake Glenville. It’s where rustic meets elegant, and is one of the most popular venues in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Sawyer Family Farmstead is beautiful and is the perfect venue for the MYC event, which begins with a barbecue dinner catered by Cashiers Farmers Market’s On-The-Side BBQ. Blue Ridge Junior Appalachian Musicians (JAM), a group comprised of local children playing traditional mountain music, is scheduled to play. Then Songs From The Road Band kicks into gear.

“This year’s event is a real celebration,” Shawler said. “While the ultimate goal is to raise money for the kids, this year we’re putting everything into making an amazing evening where guests will enjoy great barbecue and hours of the best bluegrass music in the country. It’s going to be fun!”

Guests are also invited to participate in square dancing (called by North Carolina Representative Joe Sam Queen) and line dancing led by professional dance instructor Danie Beck. Also, there is a silent auction of several excellent packages and products, in addition to a live auctioning of a week’s stay at a beautiful vacation home in Boca Grande, Florida.

Mountain Youth Charities is a local, volunteer-run 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in Cashiers. Founded in 2013, the organization’s mission is to raise money “to support great programs for great kids.” Funds raised by the Barn Dance benefit the students at Blue Ridge School via the Blue Ridge School Education Foundation, as well as many other organizations that serve the youth of our community. For example, proceeds from last year’s event also benefited the Summit Charter School, Hampton Preschool, JAM, and Big Brothers Big Sisters.

For more information about the barn dance and Mountain Youth Charities, please visit mountainyouthcharities.org. Barn dance tickets are available at the Cashiers Area Chamber of Commerce or online at the Mountain Youth Charities’ website.

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