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HOLIDAY CONCERTS. The Shepherd University School of Music will present its Annual Holiday Gala Concert, “Glad Tidings! —A Shepherd Celebration!” on Saturday, Dec. 4, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 5, at 3 p.m. in the Wellness Center arena. The program includes holiday music with traditional favorites and contemporary arrangements, and a holiday sing-along.

HOLIDAY INN TOURS. Dec. 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. part of the annual Olde Time Christmas celebration in Harpers Ferry and Bolivar. Five historic inns participating to share the history of their special homes, along with a little holiday cheer. A shuttle is available for transportation to the tour locations. Proceeds will support restoration of the historic African-American First Zion Baptist Church, a project sponsored by the Harpers Ferry - Bolivar Historic Town Foundation. For advance ticket purchase and more information, visit historicharpersferry.org/events.

LUMINARY DISPLAY. On Dec. 2 from 5 to 8 p.m. a free public memorial luminary display will light up the lawn of the Robert C. Byrd Science and Technology Center. To request a light to be displayed for a loved one, visit the 150th Anniversary Honor/Memoriam Luminaria Display webpage.

ALL-STATE CHOIR. Donald “Donnie” E. Hawkins, a Washington High School junior from Ranson, won the top place position of first chair at the All-State West Virginia American Choral Directors Association auditions. 

Achieving a 97 out of a 100 score for his audition on Nov. 6, Donnie, who began singing at the age of 4, competed against 89 other choir students from across the state at West Virginia University campus in Morgantown. As a member of this year’s West Virginia All State Choir, he will perform with 50 other students in three public choral concerts scheduled in January at the Municipal Auditorium in Charleston.

CATF APPOINTMENT. Peggy McKowen has been named the permanent producing artistic director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival at Shepherd University. McKowen served as the annual summer theater’s associate producing director for 15 years. In September, she was named acting producing director when the festival’s founder, Ed Herendeen retired.

“During that short time, Peggy has led the organization with a genuine and heartfelt passion,” according to a letter announcement from the festival’s board president Marellen Aherne. “She has demonstrated her continued commitment to the Festival’s mission and values, while also directing a more conscious commitment toward becoming an anti-racist and anti-oppressive theater company.”

TEACHER GRANTS. Twenty-six teachers from 13 Jefferson County Schools received “mini-grants” totaling nearly $11,500 from the Eastern West Virginia Community Foundation, a regional nonprofit organization. The foundation provided grants range from money supporting a “Little Cozy Library” for Stephanie Hite’s classroom at T.A. Lowery Elementary School to a set of headphones for Brian Collins’s South Jefferson Elementary classroom. The foundation also donated money toward reading circles, field trips and robotics programs.

For information, visit www.EWVCF.org.

HOLIDAY GIFTS. The Washington Street Artists Cooperative and the Jefferson Arts Council are making lots of various artistic gifts for the holidays, from paintings and photography to fabric crafts, jewelry, baskets and holiday decorations. 

The gallery on North George Street will remain open until 8 p.m. during the Charles Town holiday tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 5 at the Jefferson County Courthouse. Otherwise, the gallery’s holiday shopping hours from Dec. 2 through Dec. 27 will remain 11 am. to 5 p.m. on Sundays, Thursdays and Fridays and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.

WORKSHOP ON CHILDREN. On Saturday, Nov. 27, the Peace Kingdom Mountain Top Family Education and Re-creation Center in Harpers Ferry will offer an in-person and online workshop in Harpers Ferry. The workshop will feature a presentation by Rebecca Friedrichs, an expert on the sexualization of children and the author of “Standing Up to Goliath: Battling State and National Teachers’ Unions for the Heart and Soul of Our Kids and Country.” 

The event takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The cost is $20 per person, including lunch. Registration is required by Nov. 24. For more information and to register, visit visionroot.org.

FITNESS FUNDRAISER. The Friends of Shepherdstown Library are sponsoring a November fundraiser to purchase a bicycle rack for the new Shepherdstown Public Library, which is set to open during the summer of 2022. The Fall Fitness FUNdraiser is a virtual “Choose your own Adventure Event.” 

Anytime during the month of November, get active and pledge $1—or any amount you choose—per minute or mile of activity to fund a bicycle rack for the new library. Select any fitness activity you enjoy—choose a beautiful fall day, gather family and friends, get out on a run, hike or bike ride. All ages are welcome to participate. 

Details and a pledge form are available at www.foslwv.org

CHURCH EVENT. Asbury United Methodist Church in Shepherdstown will host a community party for children, young adults and their families after Shepherdstown’s holiday parade on Dec. 4. Games, arts and crafts, a firepit chat and other activities are planned. The church is located at 4257 Kearneysville Pike in Shepherdstown. 

VETERANS DAY OBSERVATION. On Nov. 11, members of Bee Line Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution joined with their community to participate in a traditional Veterans Day observance at Veterans Memorial Park in Charles Town.

In a Veterans Day address, Todd Raymond, a retired U.S. Army veteran, observed how the reality of military service and the ultimate sacrifice by a relative few have made many of the nuisances of daily life seem trivial by comparison. This year’s ceremony also included a welcome by George Goletz and an invocation by Eric DelRio, both representing Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3522 in Charles Town. 

Memorial wreaths were presented by several organizations. The ceremony was concluded with the retirement of colors and the sounding of Taps, rendered by Cadet Major Beth Piercy of Jefferson High School’s Air Force Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. 

 

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