TRAC Chosen To Create NC Ornaments for National Christmas Tree Display
The Toe River Arts Council has been selected to create North Carolina's ornaments for the 2013 National Christmas Tree Display. Ornaments from all 56 U.S. states, territories and the District of Columbia will be displayed at the 2013 National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony in Washington, D.C.
The National Park Foundation announced that the Toe River Arts Council has been chosen to coordinate the design and creation of the ornaments for North Carolina’s tree for the 2013 National Christmas Tree display in President’s Park in Washington, D.C. Twenty-seven students from Mountain Heritage High School—Christy Edwards’ Art II class and the Yancey Evening School under the advisory of Randall Rountree and Gred Gross—join local artists and youth from each U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia who were selected to design and create 24 ornaments for their respective state or territory tree.
“It is a great honor to be selected because of the esteemed position of the National Park Service in our nation, preserving both our cultural and natural resources for current and future generations. The Blue Ridge Parkway and the Appalachian Trail both thread their ways through our counties,” said Denise Cook, Executive Director of the Toe River Arts Council in Mitchell and Yancey counties in Western North Carolina, “so we understand the value of the Parks Service.
“We are also excited to be a part of the National Christmas Tree display because it will showcase the creative energies and spirit of collaboration in our community."
Under the direction of local artist, Cassie Floan, ornaments were designed and created by the two Mtn. Heritage classes. Personal inspiration and the natural beauty of the area were used to create narrative ornaments depicting scenes familiar to the mountainous region of North Carolina. Students worked with paper silhouettes and natural objects to make multi-layered pop-up sculptures. All used their imagination and personal connections to the area to portray their culturally rich scenes.
“We are very pleased that artist Cassie Floan and students from Mountain Heritage High School’s Art II class and the high school’s alternative Yancey Evening School program will represent North Carolina in this year’s National Christmas Tree display,” said Neil Mulholland, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation. “This time honored tradition is the perfect way to kick off the holiday season.”
Four weeks of holiday events in President’s Park will kick off with the 91st National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony presented by the National Park Service and National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks. The exact date of the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony will be announced in the coming weeks.
As one of America’s oldest holiday traditions, the National Christmas Tree Lighting began on Christmas Eve in 1923, when President Calvin Coolidge lit a Christmas tree in front of 3,000 spectators on the Ellipse in President’s Park. Since 1923, each succeeding President has carried on the tradition of what now has become a month-long event presented by the National Park Foundation and National Park Service. In addition to the National Christmas Tree display, President’s Park hosts a variety of family-oriented holiday attractions, such as the Santa’s Workshop, nightly holiday performances, a Yule log, nativity scene, and model train display.
For ticket information and talent announcements, as well as other event details, please visit www.thenationaltree.org.
ABOUT THE TOE RIVER ARTS COUNCIL
TRAC is a non-profit organization founded in 1976 to promote the arts in Mitchell and Yancey Counties through educational and community wide programs and services and is supported by donations, memberships, local government support, grants (including the North Carolina Arts Council, a state agency) and earned income from its events and sales. For more information about the Arts Council, visit the website, www.toeriverarts.org or call 828-682-7215.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks, raises private funds that directly aid, support and enrich America’s more than 400 national parks and their programs. Chartered by Congress as the nonprofit partner of the National Park Service, the National Park Foundation plays a critical role in conservation and preservation efforts, establishing national parks as powerful learning environments, and giving all audiences an equal and abundant opportunity to experience, enjoy and support America’s treasured places. www.nationalparks.org.