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'Out & About' more than just a slogan

Katherine Scoggins • Jan 23, 2019 at 10:06 AM

Looking back over the past year, I realize I have had the opportunity to experience so many fun and amazing events ranging from the beautiful and elegant offerings of the Kingsport Garden Club and the educational and entertaining offerings of the Friends of the Library and Friends of the Kingsport Archives, to the wonderful music of the Symphony of the Mountains, Paramount Players, the Dobyns-Bennett Band and Orchestra, the McLain Family Band and Cantemus Women’s Choir to the amazing performances of Kingsport Ballet, Kingsport Theatre Guild and so many, many others.

And it's thanks in large part to the generosity and kindness of many of you.

My column, aptly named “Out and About” is not just a slogan, but a way of spending quality time with and meeting new and interesting people and reacquainting myself with friends and teachers from years past. The actor and writer James Dickey (sorry for name dropping!) once asked me at a cocktail party, “So what do you do when the time really matters?”

I believe I am beginning to form a response to that question. There is so much to see and hear (and do) here and I look to so many of you and your connections to experience so many things - which also includes meeting and getting to know many of you and learning about the clubs and groups that so many of you have shared with me. We have bonded over music, plays, wonderful meals, historic homes, great books and art, laughter and many special times.

Please continue to keep me informed about these events. I can’t promise I will make it to all of them. But I will try to spread the word. Drop me a line at [email protected]. We want to hear from you and I hope to see you "out and about."

“Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is grown, he will not depart from it.”

Over the last few months of 2018, I tried to capture the enthusiasm and joy of the young children at Kingsport’s First Presbyterian Preschool Sunday School Class Mission Project, their Mitten Tree and the churches’ Clothes Closet, a well-utilized outreach ministry to our community. Thanks to Becca Wright and Kim Alvis for sharing some information and photos so that I can finally share it with you.

The photographs featured with today's column are of the 3- and 4-year-old preschool class at First Presbyterian Church and their mission project. One is of the Mitten Tree Mission Project. The children collected gloves, mittens, socks, scarves and hats to share with those needing these items to keep warm this winter. Each year between Thanksgiving and Christmas, this class invites the congregation to support them and their “Mitten Tree” Mission Project.

During Sunday School, the children have been learning that Christmas is when we celebrate God’s greatest gift to us: Jesus. They also learn that Jesus teaches us to share God’s love and to care for others. The children decorate gift bags and fill them with the items from the Mitten Tree. They then present their gifts to Mr. Don Thompson, First Presbyterian’s Clothes Closet coordinator, to be distributed through the Clothes Closet.

Kicking Off 2019 with a Flurry of Fun

I recently attended a Christmas concert (previously snowed out) by one of my favorite groups, Morningstar Flute Ensemble. This is a favorite of mine for several reasons: the outstanding level of musicianship by the musicians, the interesting and often entertaining selections of songs, the brief but interesting selections of music and their history, and the fact that Charlotte Ellis, the group’s founder, and her husband Art (Ellis), are two of the nicest and friendliest people in the area. Merry Christmas one last time for 2018.

The Friends of the Archives, of which I am a new member, met last week to do some planning for the year - board training, Fun Fest, possibly more scan days and perhaps the BIG move. This is a great group - lots of diverse personalities and varied levels of interest and experiences. We have lots of fun and, yet, important work gets accomplished. If you’ve ever wondered where the archives are, what they do and why they’re so important, attend a workshop or special day and see what goes on and how you might can help.

New Year’s Eve is usually exciting on its own, but even more so when two good friends (a husband and wife, no less!) have birthdays on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. We had fun, ate too much and laughed ourselves silly. If you’ve ever had the chance to see a performance of “Ballets Trockadero de MonteCarlo,” you know how hilarious they are - a large group of us went to Knoxville to see them perform at the Tennessee Theater several years ago and I know I’ve never hurt from laughing so much. Watching the DVD just reminded me how much I miss laughing so hard; it's good aerobic exercise!

I am so looking forward to historical society meetings, more concerts, author readings, art exhibits, food drives, and many other wonderful examples of awareness and fundraising opportunities. Don't forget to drop me a line anytime and here’s wishing each of you a wonderful and blessed 2019!


Feb. 3-26: The Kingsport Art Guild, in cooperation with its current roster of instructors, will present “Form, Space and Vision: The Art Instructors Perspective” in the Main Gallery of the Renaissance Center in Kingsport. Opening reception will be Sunday, Feb. 3, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Main Gallery.

Feb. 5: The Kingsport Art Guild will welcome special guest Mars Reid for a 3-D printer demonstration at noon in room 239 of the Renaissance Center. Lunch will be available for $5. Visit www.kingsportartguild.com to learn more.

Feb. 9: CASA for Kids, Inc., will hold its Red Shoe Gala featuring cocktail hour, a silent auction, dinner, music and the Red Shoe contest at MeadowView Conference Resort and Convention Center. Visit casa4kidsinc.org for more details.

Feb. 23: Warriors' Path State Park will hold its Adopt a Tree event from 10 a.m. to noon. Help plant future forests and receive seedlings to take home. Follow signs from the park entrance to the tree distribution location.

Katherine Scoggins is a Sunday Stories columnist who highlights local happenings and community organizations twice a month in Out & About with Katherine. To share photos from a community event, add an event to our calendar (below) or invite Katherine to attend a function, email [email protected]

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