The Orchard Preserves History/Culture, New Programs

On Thursday, April 17, the Rotary Club of Spruce Pine received a presentation by Michele Williams, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Altapass Foundation. Introduced by Rotarian Elaine Percival,she provided an overview of new offerings at the Orchard at Altapass. The mission of the Foundation is to preserve the local history, heritage and culture, to protect the natural assets of the orchard land, and to involve the public in the Appalachian experience. In the last two years, several new offerings have been created to attract new visitors to the Orchard. These include a network of walking trails, developed in partnership with Kids in Parks, and a weekly Appalachian Heritage program for children during the summer. In addition, the Orchard formed a book club that meets once a month year round, and a new Heritage presentation for adults will be offered one evening each month starting in May of 2014. The Foundation has also focused on increasing engagement with members and past visitors through a monthly e-newsletter that is sent to over 2000 recipients each month during the season. Ms. Williams closed with a discussion of opportunities for community members to contribute to the mission of the Altapass Foundation, which include joining the Foundation, volunteering, and contributing to the Save the Good StuffEndowment Campaign. Spruce Pine Rotary is proud to have the Orchard at Altapass in our own backyard and appreciate Ms. Williams sharing the “good stuff” with Rotary members. 

Pictured is Rotary President Janie DeVos with Michele Williams and Rotarian Elaine Percival. Photographer is Rotarian Carole Arthurs

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