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Today's Features

  • As a young boy growing up in Kentucky, local music legend Willard Gayheart, scraped up $3 to purchase his first guitar, and even though he didn't do much with it then, when he moved to Galax in 1962 he got hooked on learning bluegrass and old-time music.

    Gayheart, now a renowned musician and pencil artist, shared his story with a crowd at last Thursday's first Bluegrass Gravy & River Quilts event at the Crossroads Institute in Galax.

  • HILLSVILLE — Juggling just isn't for the clowns and the circus. It's for artists, athletes, hobbyists and just about anyone — and the Flanagans can attest to that.

    As local Glen Luke Flanagan swirls a handful of bean bags through the air and tosses them behind his back, showing off his juggling skills, he explains how the hobby has become about sharing, showing and coming together.

    He never misses a beat as he demonstrates his tricks, manipulation skills and choreography.

  • The creative economy being developed throughout the area is one industry that can't be exported overseas, said Chris Shackelford, director of Chestnut Creek School of the Arts.

    CCSA has and will continue to bring new businesses into the area, add jobs, create mixed-use buildings and improve the quality of life as Galax works toward transitioning into a place of entrepreneurial development and tourism, Shackelford said.

  • In the “Memories: The Blue Ridge Parkway in Retrospect” juried art show at Chestnut Creek School of the Arts, a watercolor painting by local artist Jarrod Wilson depicts a classic Plymouth pulled to the side of the road on the parkway with a blanket spread out on a grassy knoll.

  • Mixed martial artists Team PVT (Pyles Vale Tudo) of Galax rocked the cage last month at the Gladiator Fight Club’s MMA “Battle of Wills” event at the Sportplex Indoor Sports and Event Center in Winchester.

    Team PVT is part of Elite Combat Martial Arts in Galax, which specializes in martial arts, combat stunt fighting, MMA, aerobics and weight training, competitive sport karate and self defense.

    The business was established 16 years ago by owner and instructor is Grand Master Dean Pyles and his wife, Master Heather Pyles.

  • The Gerald Anderson Band will perform at the Rex Theater at 5 p.m on April 17 as part of the grand opening celebration for the Chestnut Creek School of the Arts.

    Anderson will be joined by Jimmy Edmonds on fiddle, Butch Barker on bass and Paul Trianosky on mandolin.

    Anderson, accomplished guitar player and luthier, has made more than 25 recordings and has more than 200 ribbons from musical competitions — the most prestigious being the award for best guitar player at the 2003 Galax Old Fiddlers' Convention.

  • Chestnut Creek School of the Arts will celebrate its official opening in downtown Galax with a black tie gala on Friday evening and a community celebration of the arts on Saturday.

    The Colorful Black Tie Gala is planned for Friday evening from 7 to 10. The school will host “Women of the Blue Ridge Plateau,” the opening exhibit for “Minds Wide Open: Virginia Celebrates Women in the Arts.”

  • The Young Actors Co-op — a group of talented, young actors — will ham it up in Victorian-era theater costumes and show off their juggling and unicycle-riding skills in the Parade of the Arts on Saturday at noon, a featured event of Chestnut Creek School of the Arts' grand opening.

    The parade will begin at the Galax Recreation Center and head north on Main Street, turning onto Center Street and then onto Grayson Street.

    “This parade is going to be full of fun and surprises,” said Sandra Hankley, a volunteer for CCSA.

  • A diverse line-up of artisan demonstrators — from potters to painters to weavers and wood turners — will show what Chestnut Creek School of the Arts is about and what it has to offer during a street fair Saturday from 1-4:30 p.m., as part of the art school's grand opening.

    Demonstrators will set up on Grayson Street and inside CCSA to share their talents and showcase the wide range of classes offered at the new art school.

  • When local DJ and emcee Harold Mitchell was bedridden with rheumatic fever at six years old, the radio kept him company as he listened to the legends on the Grand Ole Opry.

    During the five-hour radio program, he would hear greats such as Hank Williams, Hank Snow, Kitty Wells and comedians and radio announcers. However, it was the harmonies of Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys that caught his ear, and that’s when he fell in love with bluegrass.

    From then on, he knew one way or another he was going to be in the radio business.