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Caleb Ross was selected Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland County Student of the Month for December. Photo by Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland County

Ross is Boys & Girls Clubs
December Student of the Month

Caleb Ross was selected Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland County Student of the Month for December.
Photo by Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland County
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Bethware School’s 4th grade Spelling Bee 2023 winners – Pictured L-R: Shalee Messer, runner up with Hayden Wray, the Spelling Bee winner. Photo provided

Bethware Elementary 4th grade Spelling Bee 2023 winners

Pictured L-R: Shalee Messer, runner up with Hayden Wray, the Spelling Bee winner.

Photo provided
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West School students named to State Honors Chorus – Alston Ladd, Kate Fulton, and Seth Tate were recognized at Cleveland County School Board’s January meeting for making State Honors Chorus. The students serenaded those in attendance with one song from the concert. Alston, Kate, and Seth received a certificate of achievement from Cleveland County Schools for being selected to sing in the State Honors Chorus. Photo provided

West School students named to State Honors Chorus

Alston Ladd, Kate Fulton, and Seth Tate were recognized at Cleveland County School Board’s January meeting for making State Honors Chorus. The students serenaded those in attendance with one song from the concert. Alston, Kate, and Seth received a certificate of achievement from Cleveland County Schools for being selected to sing in the State Honors Chorus.

Photo provided

Sheriff Norman recognizes outstanding staff at CCSO

Sheriff Alan Norman recognized several individuals this morning for different awards, promotions, retirements, and actions in the line of duty.
Deputy B. Tesseneer and Detention Officer T. Swaney were presented member of the quarter awards.
The Criminal Investigative Division was awarded the 2022 Squad Fitness Award. The top five finishers from the division were:
1. Sergeant D. Shaffer
2. Investigator M. Clayton
3. Investigator C. Carpenter
4. Investigator A. Shumate
5. Investigator A. Paz.
   Deputy S. Staton was awarded the 2022 Top Fitness Award.
Ten members of the agency were presented 2022 Top 10 Shooter awards:
1. Investigator M. Hinson
2. Deputy A. Beal
3. Investigator A. Shumate
4. Lieutenant D. Bryson
5. Investigator D. Toney
6. Deputy K. Smith
7. Deputy M. Lawrence
8. Sergeant M. Blanton
9. Sergeant T. Lee
10. Lieutenant B. Pearson
Deputy E. Barkley was recognized for his recent retirement and awarded his service weapon.
Tim Sims was recognized for his actions during his line of duty injury in August 2018. He was presented a shadow box with his service weapon and badge.
Detention Officer G. Woodard was promoted to Corporal.
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Kalashja Womick

KM Middle School student publishes children’s book

By Loretta Cozart

While most middle schoolers spend their summers watching television, spending time at the pool with friends, or chatting on social media, Kalashja Womick spent last summer writing her first book, “To The Mountains We Go!”.
Kalashja is a ninth grader at Kings Mountain Middle School and was inspired by her aunt Cynthia Stitt to write her first book. “My aunt inspired me to write this book and with the encouragement from my parents, Barbara, and Trent Dillard , I finished it in three months.  My aunt is an author, and she knows the process of publishing through Amazon. Once I finished writing and illustrating the book, she took it from there.”
“To The Mountains We Go!” is a story written for children between 5-years and 10-years-old. The main character, Lay is an adventurous little girl. She is excited about her trip to the mountains. She spends time there fishing, hiking, and camping. While there, she gets sad. According to Kalashja, the moral behind this story is, “Your destination stops when you do.” The book asks readers, “Would you like to see the amazing things to do in the beautiful mountains? If so, let's take a trip to the mountains with Lay, ‘Here we go!’"
   “I didn’t find the publishing side of the book too hard. It took three months to write and illustrate the book and two months to get it published. The book went on sale Amazon on August 7, 2022. So far, I’ve sold about 250 books. I am grateful for the support of my family throughout this process.”
“I want to tell others not to let your age get in the way of things you want to do. Once you set your mind to do something, you can do anything,” Kalashja said. She has begun work on her second book in this series titled, “To The Beach We Go!” Who knows what adventures Lay might find there?
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Highway Patrol graduates
37 new troopers

The State Highway Patrol welcomed 36 new troopers on Friday, January 20, at a graduation ceremony held for the 157th Basic Highway Patrol School. The ceremony commemorates 27 weeks of extensive training to prepare the graduates for a rewarding career in law enforcement.
Three of the state troopers will serve the local area. They are Brian Hawkins, serving Cleveland County; Cody Childress, serving Gaston County; and Jason Marshall, serving Gaston County.
The ceremony was held at the Shepherd’s Church in Cary at 10:00 a.m. Department of Public Safety Secretary Eddie M. Buffaloe, Jr. served as guest speaker and provided congratulatory remarks to the graduates.
The oath of office was administered by Judge Jeffrey K. Carpenter of the North Carolina Court of Appeals. Colonel Freddy L. Johnson Jr., commander of the State Highway Patrol, provided remarks to the newest sworn members of the State Highway Patrol.
“As new state troopers, we feel you are ready to fulfill this role and be ambassadors who represent the State Highway Patrol,” said Johnson. “My charge to you is to be a leader in your community by your actions, your character and your important role as a law enforcement officer.”
These new state troopers will report to their respective duty stations on Wednesday, Feb. 15, to begin a demanding field training program.
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Nunsense, The Mega-Musical coming to KMLT in March

Kings Mountain Little Theatre, Inc., and corporate sponsor Edward Jones – Jack and Pam Buchanan, announce that Nunsense is returning to the Joy Performance Theater with “Nunsense, The Mega-Musical, by Dan Goggin. The musical includes all the fun of the original Nunsense but it has been super-sized!
Mega-Nunsense, starring the original five nuns features five new male and female characters, including the never-before-seen infamous convent cook, Sister Julia, Child of God.
Nunsense, the winner of four Outer Critics Circle Awards, including Best Musical, was called “A hail of fun and frolic” by The New York Times. And now it’s bigger and better than ever! It would be a sin to pass up the opportunity to see it!
Performances are scheduled for Friday, March 17 and 24, and Saturday March 18 and 25 at 7:30 p.m. Matinee performances are scheduled for Sunday, March 19 and 26 at 3 p.m.
Director Jim Champion and Music Director Libby Putnam urge everyone interested to come join the fun of participating in the production of this musical comedy.
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The Arts Council asks, “Do you feel lucky?”

The Big Chill returns to the Cleveland County Arts Council this year with lots of fun and the chance to win big!
The Arts Council is starting the New Year off by giving you a chance to win $5,000 or $2,500 or $1,000 plus other exciting items during the first Big Chill Reverse Raffle and Party.  Only 250 tickets will be sold so the chances are good that you could win.
Folks have two ticket options to purchase. Reverse Raffle only tickets are $100, and you don’t have to be present to win.
Reverse Raffle and VIP Party tickets are $150. This ticket is a raffle ticket (chance to win) but also allows two people to join us at the party which Includes an evening of BIG fun – a huge Charcuterie table, Chili Bar, Silent Auction & BIG dessert finale and of course the reverse raffle. The silent auction will include great items and experiences such as beach trips, pottery, paintings, jewelry, photography sessions, and so much more. The silent auction will go live the week before the event so that anyone can log on and make their bids. The online auction will continue through the evening.
“We’re excited to put a new twist on a favorite community event,” said Shearra Miller, Executive Director of the Arts Council. “The Big Chill has been taking place for years but this year we thought it would be fun to try something different. This is one of the largest fund-raising events that we hold each year; it is a fun way for us to raise the much-needed funds that allow us to offer enriching cultural arts programs for the community.
The VIP party and reverse drawing will take place Saturday, Jan. 28, at the Arts Council, beginning at 6:00 pm.
Reverse Raffle tickets are available now at the Arts Council or from any of the members of the Board of Directors. Call 704-484-2787 for more information or to purchase tickets.
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Golden Leaf Scholarships
now open

By Loretta Cozart

The application for the Golden LEAF Scholarship is now open. Each year, the Golden LEAF Foundation awards 215 scholarships to high school seniors and community college transfer students who reside in a qualifying rural and economically distressed or tobacco-dependent North Carolina county, including Cleveland County, and are planning to enroll full-time in a participating public or private college or university located in North Carolina.
High school seniors entering college as freshmen are eligible for a scholarship totaling up to $14,000 ($3,500 a year for up to four years). Community college transfer students are eligible for $3,500 a year for up to 3 years).
To apply, visit and fill out the Golden LEAF Scholarship application form.
The deadline for applications is March 1, for application, transcript, and FAFSA. Awards will be announced in late April..
Students awarded the Golden LEAF Scholarship to attend North Carolina Colleges and Universities are also eligible to participate in additional leadership and internship opportunities. These engagements allow scholars to gain experience in future career fields/areas of passion and build key communication and leadership skills. Opportunities include:
• Lead 4 Excellence (L4E) Experience: This two-year experience provides Golden LEAF Scholars with leadership training through the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL), one of the nation’s leading leadership development organizations. The opportunity offers flexible online leadership training courses, personalized support from a highly trained executive coach, and collaborative learning partnerships with other scholars in the cohort.
• Rural Internship Initiative: Golden LEAF offers a paid internship opportunity for students to gain experience at an eligible business, non-profit, or government entity located in a rural North Carolina community. Visit our website at to learn more.
Participating NC colleges and universities include: Appalachian State University, Meredith College, Barton College, Methodist University, Belmont Abbey College, Mid-Atlantic Christian University, Bennett College, Montreat College, Brevard College ,North Carolina A&T State University, Cabarrus College of Health Sciences, North Carolina Central University, Campbell University, North Carolina State University, Carolinas College of Health Sciences, North Carolina State Univ. - Agricultural Institute, Catawba College, North Carolina Wesleyan College, Chowan University, Pfeiffer University College at Southeastern, Queens University of Charlotte, Davidson College, St. Andrews University, Duke University, St. Augustine’s University,  East  Carolina
 University, Salem College, Elizabeth City State University, Shaw University, Elon University, University of Mount Olive, Fayetteville State University, University of North Carolina at Asheville, Gardner-Webb University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Greensboro College, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Guilford College University of North Carolina at Greensboro, High Point University, University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Johnson C. Smith University, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Johnson & Wales University, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Lees-McRae College, Wake Forest University, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Warren Wilson College, Livingstone College, Western Carolina University, Louisburg College, William Peace University, Mars Hill University, Wingate University, Mercy School of Nursing, and Winston-Salem State University.
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Chris Stone, Madison Avery, and Angie Dolan go over their parts at one of the play practices for “The Importance of Being Earnest” play, set to be produced by the Cherryville Little Theater. (photo provided)

CLT’s play,  “Importance of
Being  Earnest”, to start  Feb. 3


The Cherryville Little Theatre has an upcoming play scheduled to be performed Feb. 3 and 4, at 7 p.m., according to play producer, Lutricia Bennett. The theater is located at 301 W. Academy St., Cherryville.
“The play will also be performed Feb. 5 at 3 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, Feb. 10, and 11, at 7 p.m., and Feb. 12, at 3 p.m.,” said Mrs. Bennett, adding, “The show is ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’, and instead of it being set in the 1890’s in England, the director is taking liberties and changing the setting to America in the 1960’s.”
For those who may not know about the play Bennett said, “‘The Importance of Being Earnest’, is a ‘Trivial Comedy for Serious People’. It is a comedy where two friends use the same pseudonym (Earnest) for their on-the-sly activities.”
Bennett noted Erika Shelton is directing this comedy, originally set – as was noted – in the 1890’s.
“However, as I noted earlier, Erika is changing the setting to 1960’s America. This show has brilliant acting and promises to be an entertaining show full of punch-lines,” said Mrs. Bennett.
Essentially, and to firm up more about what the gist of the play’s story arc is, Bennett said, “It’s the story of two bachelors, John ‘Jack’ Worthing and Algernon ‘Algy’ Moncrieff, who create alter egos. They attempt to win the hearts of two women who, conveniently, claim to only love men called Ernest. Jack and Algy struggle to maintain their deceptions and as the
plot thickens, become entangled in lies, disguises and misadventures.”
The cast is comprised of the following actors, with their roles in parentheses): Chris Stone (John Worthing); Terrell Barnes (Algernon Moncreiff); Angie Dolan (Lady Bracknell); Laurie Ricardo (Cecily Cardew); Madison Avery (Gwendolyn Fairfax); Mary Bolton (Ms. Prism); Charlie Reep (Dr. Chasuble); Noah Bolton (Lane manservant); and Joseph Bolton (Merriman Butler). Lucas Dolan is the assistant stage manager and Matt Walega and Ryan Richards are the backstage techs.
For more information, call (704) 435-1742.

PAWS gets a major upgrade

By Loretta Cozart

PAWS, the mascot for North Elementary School Tigers, got a major update that was unveiled to students on Friday, January 6 during its first semester awards day program.
It appears PAWS has been working out over the Christmas break and came back to school sporting a more muscular physique, thanks to Flooring America.
The old PAWS, circa 1980, needed an upgrade and a former North School student answered the call.
The school thanked Ty Toney from Flooring America for his donation for the new Tiger Mascot costume! Once a Tiger, Always a Tiger! 

KM girls win two at ER

Kings Mountain High’s Lady Mountaineers defeated West Charlotte 50-46 and Masters Academy 61-32 and lost to Hopewell 58-33 in the recent East Rutherford Holiday Tournament.
CoRey Simpson scored 16 points and grabbed seven rebounds to lead the way in the win over West Charlotte. Farri Martin and Khalia King each had nine points and two boards, Tyasa Bell had six points and 10 rebounds, Myracle Davis four points and eight rebounds, Austyn Dixon three points and two rebounds and Alayna Patrick three points and 10 rebounds. 
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Biltmore House at Christmas. (Photo by

Picture yourself in a  Hallmark movie Channel shooting at Biltmore in January

An exciting new made for television movie is filming in Asheville, NC this January. Casting Office, Inc. is now seeking Asheville area North Carolina locals as Background Performers for a new Hallmark movie being filmed at Biltmore Estate.
“A Biltmore Christmas” will be filmed entirely on location at the Estate in Asheville, NC, and stars Bethany Joy Lenz and Kristoffer Polaha.
Extras help make film atmospheres look and feel realistic, are seen in non-speaking roles, and are the fabulous people hired to fill a scene on a tv/film set, like a crowd in an arena, diners in a restaurant, pedestrians walking in a park, etc.
No experience is needed to be an extra and you should be prepared for long 12–14-hour workdays. Extras must arrive as early as needed, and stay as late, or long as needed. All communication and information will be sent via email, so you must be available to respond to emails sent to qualify. All ages, ethnicities, and genders are needed for this film.
Anyone interested in being an extra for one of next year’s Countdown to Christmas movies should apply online at the company’s website.
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Cherryville New Year’s Shooters, Inc. travel throughout Cherryville on New Year’s, a tradition that has carried on since the 1800s. This year’s event is on January 2. Photo by Cherryville New Year’s Shooters, Inc.

Cherryville New Year’s Shooters begin new year with a blast

Cherryville New Year’s Shooters, Inc. will hold their annual event on Monday, January 2, at Blacks Grill at midnight and concluding at Rudisill Football Stadium on E. First Street in Cherryville at 6:30 p.m. In the interim, they will make 49 more stops to perform their New Year’s ritual.
The history of the Cherryville New Year’s Shooters goes back thousands of years, according to their website. The "Chant" and producing loud noise is a ritual that has been in existence since the 1300's. Celebrating the "New Year" on January 1 can be linked back to the Romans in 45 BC during the reign of Julius Caesar. The act of celebrating the New Year goes back at least 4,000 years to the ancient Egyptians and Babylonians.
The pioneer immigrants that settled in the Cherryville NC area can be linked back to the area of the Rhine River in Germany. In that area of the world many Old-World customs were formed from the Bohemian, German, Scottish, Irish, and English.
In the 1750's German Immigrants settled in the Indian Creek and Howard's Creek area north of the current Cherryville. Along with the German immigrants were the Scotch-Irish, Swiss, Dutch and French. It is believed that the actual tradition is a cultural mix of all these immigrants. The last 250 years of the tradition parallels the history of the Cherryville area.
Land grants from the King of England began in the mid 1700's for the area known as Anson and later Tryon County. The area along the Indian Creek began to grow from a few pioneer families to many. Names which appear on early land grants and records include Black, Wise, Stroup, Beam, Horse (Huss), Houser, Baker, Whitesides, Homesley, Sullivan, Roberts, Eaker, Carpenter, Brown, Anthony, Havner (Heafner), Reynolds, and Cyzer (Kiser).
In the 1800's the area became known as White Pines. After the railroad was built, the name was changed to Cherryville in 1865 due to the many cherry trees that were planted.
Most of the early settlers came through Pennsylvania where the Cherryville tradition can be traced. The Philadelphia Mummers were a group who shot in the New Year going house-to-house, singing songs, shooting guns, performing dances and all were rewarded with food and drink. The early Mummers appointed a leader or speech director who recited such rhymes like this:
"Here we stand before your door,
As we stood the year before;
Give us whiskey; give us gin,
Open the door and let us in."
The first president, George Washington, welcomed the tradition and was entertained by the Mummers in Philadelphia, the first capital of the United States.
The early Cherryville area pioneers walked house-to-house which could be very far apart and perform a version of the Mummers' New Year's Celebration. The "Chant" would be said or "cried" to the welcoming household. Then the firing of the current day weapons which were black powder muskets and pistols.
After firing the loud blasts, the shooting party would be given food and drink for their due diligence of performing the act. And what was the purpose of this affair? With the Old-World customs came superstition and folklore tales of witches and spirits. It was believed that the loud noises would drive out demons, witches, and other non-desirable entities on the property and bless the land for the upcoming year. Since most of the pioneers were farmers and depended heavily on their crops, not "shooting in the New Year" could be detrimental to their future success.
The event today takes on the same form as it did hundreds of years ago. The shooters will go house-to-house, the family will be "called out", the speech crier will recite the "Chant" and the shooters will fire their muskets, loaded with black powder only-without bullets, until all have fired. The muskets used today are originals and reproduction models from the 1800's. After the shooting, the guests are treated with refreshments or gifts. The refreshments may be a full meal or just a treat such as a cigar or apple. Cherryville NC is the only place on earth that the event still takes place. The Philadelphia Mummers continues today with a New Year's Day parade but without the "Chant" or musket blasts.
The tradition centers around the "Chant". The origin of the "Chant" is unknown, but part of the current version can be found in a circa 1777 hymn-prayer by British writer John Newton called "Time by moments steals away".  The version that is cried today is of older English style grammar. Hearing the mysterious "Chant" is a must to get the full intent of its sayings. It is part sermon, song, poem, and speech with religious and spiritual under tones in its three-minute version. A lady's version is also available but is rarely cried.
Today the Cherryville New Year’s Shooters group consists of 450 members and travels to approximately 50 locations in the Cherryville area. The group starts at Midnight on January 1st of each year and shoots for 18 straight hours ending at the Rudisill Football Stadium in Cherryville.
Some of the families and homes are the same ancestors of 250 years ago. Shooting still takes place along the Indian Creek, Howard's Creek, and Bethpage area as it did some 250 years ago. Many of today's shooters are of the same bloodline as the early pioneer shooters.
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Reagan Hutson of the Civil Air Patrol in Gastonia honors great-grandfather Hicel Fred McKinney during Wreaths Across America Day on December 17. Photo by Karen Hutson 

Cadet honors great-grandfather at Wreaths Across America Day

By Loretta Cozart

One might question if things they do in life really impact others. Through the actions of Reagan Hutson, a member of the Civil Air Patrol in Gastonia, and those who attended the Wreaths Across America ceremony on December 17, one can answer that question with a resounding, “Yes!”
On Wreaths Across America Day at Mountain Rest Cemetery, hundreds gathered to honor veterans and lay wreaths. Among them was 13-year-old Reagan Hutson who contacted the commander of the Shelby Civil Air Patrol Composite Squadron asking if she could lay a wreath with his group on her great-grandfather Hicel Fred McKinney’s grave. McKinney served in both theaters during World War II, including Omaha Beach.
Reagan knew her great-grandfather, but according to her grandmother Karen Hutson, “She laid the wreath with honor not remembering how close, inseparable, the two of them were when she was a toddler.” While Reagan’s might not remember her great-grandfather in such detail, that bond between them compelled her to honor him during this annual ceremony. It is heartwarming to see such respect from one so young.
Like Reagan, hundreds gathered to remember all the veterans at Mountain Rest Cemetery. More than 1,300 veterans in all, but some have no family nearby to honor them anymore. The community remembers their service just the same.
Another remembered veteran was Otis D. Green, who according to the Hon. Clyde R. Hoey, was the first casualty from Cleveland County during WWI, killed in action on March 1, 1918. During his funeral service in 1921, the community lined the streets of town between Central School and Mountain Rest Cemetery, an estimated 2,000 people, as he was carried by fellow soldiers to his final resting place.
It is impossible for everyone to know each veteran at Mountain Rest Cemetery. But we do understand their sacrifice, and the sacrifices made by their families, as they went to foreign lands to fight for our freedom.
This year, 800 veterans had a wreath laid upon their graves in Mountain Rest. Hopefully next year, a wreath will be laid at each veteran’s grave.
Kings Mountain remembers its veterans and places them in highest esteem, just the same as Hicel Fred McKinney and Otis D. Green. Lest we not forget, freedom isn’t free and many of these veterans paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep America free.
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Having a blast outside Santa’s Workshop. (Photos Damien O’Brien)

Week 2 of  KM Christmas celebrations

By Loretta Cozart

Holiday festivities in downtown Kings Mountain continued December 9 and 10, as families celebrated the holiday season. Some stores remained open downtown, providing additional opportunities to shop local. The Streetscape project on Mountain Street is now completed, so there is easy access to shops, restaurants, and parking along Mountain Street. With new shops open on Mountain Street, the area is seeing more shopping traffic.
Children performed at Patriots Park, as proud parents looked on. Activities were plentiful, and children could put their letters to Santa in a special mailbox available downtown.
Santa’s Workshop was also open Friday and Saturday nights from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., as it will be for one more weekend of the Kings Mountain Christmas Event, so be sure to bring family and friends to experience this fun and unique family friendly event.
Stroll through Patriots Park and experience Costner’s Christmas Lights Extravaganza. This yearly tradition gets better and brighter every year. Liberty Mountain Garden at the Joy Theatre has been transformed into a Downtown Artisan Market that opens at 4:30 p.m.
December 16 and 17 are the final days of this year’s KM Christmas event, so make plans now to get in the holiday spirit and enjoy the last weekend of holiday fun in downtown Kings Mountain.
With less than two weeks left before Christmas, many were looking for those perfect gifts for friends and loved ones. Shopping local supports local merchants during the holiday season and is a great way to find fun and unique gifts for everyone in the family.
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Train Exhibit

Enjoy the trains exhibit Wednesday through Saturday between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. at Kings Mountain Historical Museum from November 25 through December 31.

Photo by Loretta Cozart
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Santa Visits KM Historical Museum

Santa visited with children at the Kings Mountain Historical Museum on December 9, meeting with each one to hear special Christmas wishes.           

Photo by KM Historical Museum

KMIS recognizes
responsible students

Each academic team at Kings Mountain Intermediate School was tasked with selecting one student who exemplified the meaning of responsibility. The teachers and staff at KMIS appreciate their hard work and outstanding character! The following students were selected by their teachers for demonstrating responsibility. Students were rewarded with a certificate and treats from KMIS administration.
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The Nutcracker, presented by Kimberla’s School of Classical Ballet will be performed on December 9-11 at the Joy Performance Center. (Photos provided)

The Nutcracker performances at Joy Performance Center in Dec.

Believe it or not - the holidays are fast approaching. This holiday season enjoy a family classic, The Nutcracker, the all-time favorite story of Clara’s magical trip to the land of sweets, presented by Kimberla's School of Classical Ballet.
The Nutcracker will be performed on Friday, December 9 at 7p.m., Saturday, December 10 at 2p.m. and 7p.m., and Sunday, December 11 at 4p.m. at The Joy Performance Center in Kings Mountain.
Tickets are $15 each for general admission seating and $100 for a mezzanine seating cluster of 4 with hor d'oeuvres. Tickets are  available by calling 704-300-4130 or at
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Good Citizen Award
goes to Amelia Jones

The Kings Mountain High School Athletic Department is pleased to announce their newest Good Citizen is Amelia Jones.
Amelia is a fourth grade student at Bethware Elementary.
Amelia is a kind and caring student who goes above and beyond to help her peers and make them feel welcome. She is a great role model to other students.
Amelia’s favorite subject is reading and her favorite series to read is the Babysitter’s Club. When she is not at school, Amelia enjoys art, especially painting, dancing and playing with her siblings, Cowan and Eva. Amelia’s positive attitude and willingness to help others is what makes her an outstanding citizen.
Amelia’s father is John Jones and her mother and step-father are Katie and Tyle McDaniel. She is the granddaughter of Lee and Hal Bryant, Jodie and Mark McDaniel and Ellen and Brad Jones.
Bethware congratulates Amelia on all her successes now and in the future.
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KMHS Class of 1965 57th REUNION – Attending members, front row seated, L-R: Bill Mullinax, Jerry Bedsole, Lynda Mauney Frye, Becky Burton Smith, Sarah Mauney Faunce, Gloria Hull Valentine, Diane Henson Dellinger, Dorothy Etters Lane, Donna Manning Anthony. Second row, L-R: Jim Wright, Pat Murphy, Kenny McAbee, Dennis Patterson, Hubert Ledford, Susan Littlejohn Gibson, Eddie Hinson, Helen Owens Putnam, Lyn Cheshire, Dianne Dixon Senn, Roxie Sellers Trammel, Marlene Hartsoe Bennett, Kathy Yarbro, Becky Payne Barrett, Jim Pressley, Jewel Hayes Dancy, Mickey Bell, Connie Dixon Bell, Gerald Matheny, Andrew Dunn, Tommy Black. Third row, L-R: Sid Carpenter, Mike Butler, Joe Patterson, June Marlowe Higgenbotham, Rodney Smith and Steve Griff.

KMHS Class of 1965
57th Reunion held

The Kings Mountain High School Class of 1965 held their 57th reunion on Saturday, October 15. Their  55th reunion could not be held due to Covid complications.  The event was celebrated at the Joy Theatre Event Center at 7PM.
The class of ‘65 was the last class to graduate from Central High School, Ridge Street.  219 members were graduated as they were the first of the Baby Boomers to come through Kings Mountain Schools.  The class was most remembered for their undefeated football championship season, basketball conference championship and conference runner-up in baseball.
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Dr. J. C. Patrick was Mayor of Kings Mountain from 1907 – 1909. Painting by Timmy Hord

City unveils portrait
of Mayor J.C. Patrick

By Loretta Cozart

On October 25, just before the city council meeting, City of Kings Mountain Mayor Scott Neisler remembered an early mayor who played key roles in the modernization of Kings Mountain: Dr. John Christopher Blair Patrick (J.C. Patrick) who served as mayor for the city from 1907 –  1909.
Mayor Neisler said that Rev. Rob Patrick of Boyce Memorial ARP Church once came to give the invocation during city council and mentioned that he had a photo of J. C. Patrick. Rob is the grandnephew of J.C. Patrick and offered to share a photo of his family member with the city to create a portrait for the Mayor’s Wall in city hall.
To learn more about Patrick, Mayor Neisler searched City of Kings Mountain Minute Books from 1908. From those official records, he learned that under Mayor Patrick’s term, the city of Kings Mountain made to significant strides in public health and public education.
A significant action occurred when the city went to the bond market and borrowed $50,000 to start a city water system. “Until that time, the city had no public water. The amount borrowed would equate to $1.6 million dollars today,” he said.
“At that time, the city also borrowed $15,000 in bonds to start a graded school. That would equate  to $316,000 today. The city had no public school until 1908 and we have Mayor J.C. Patrick to thank for that,” he said.
Rev. Patrick then shared a little early history of the Patrick family. “John Christopher Blair Patrick was the third generation of my family born in America after coming here from Ireland. I have been told he was also the first dentist in Kings Mountain. He passed away in 1912. He and his wife had no children. He married Nellie Brown of Kings Mountain, and she remained a widow for the rest of her life,” he shared with those in attendance as he unveiled the oil painting by Timmy Hord.
According to, Dr. J.C. Patrick was born in York County, SC, and was a well-known dentist who served as a council member for the city four years. He acted as mayor from December 1, 1907 –  November 30, 1909. He suffered from facial cancer four years which eventually led to his being confined at home for a year before his death. He and his wife Nellie were married for eight years. He died at the age of 42.
Using the city’s cemetery information online, one can see that Nellie was 35 when her husband died. She lived until December 12, 1959, and died at the age of 82. Both are buried in Mountain Rest Cemetery.
Mayor Neisler pointed out that what Patrick did then is no different than what any mayor and city councilperson has done since the town’s inception. “They have all worked to do what is the best for Kings Mountain,” he said.
The city is missing two more images from the Mayor’s Wall who have served Kings Mountain since 1874: Dr. F.M. (Frank) Garrett and L.T. Mann. Mayor Neisler asks if you are a relative of either mayor or have a photo the city can use to create a portrait, that you call city hall. 704-734-0444. Your photograph will be returned to you once the portrait is completed.
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Two KM firefighters graduate
NC Breathing Equipment
Firefighter Survival School

By Loretta Cozart

On October 14, KMFD Firefighter Clark and Firefighter Allen graduated from North Carolina Breathing Equipment Firefighter Survival School at Gaston College. The course is demanding and considered the most advanced firefighter survival school participants ever attend.
According to the NC Breathing Equipment School participant application, Fire Chiefs are required to write a letter of recommendation and are advised, “This is an advanced firefighter school, physically and psychologically demanding. Please only approve capable, qualified veteran individuals. Participants should be Firefighter II certified and familiar with the normal use and operation of SCBA’s. They should be in very good physical condition. Participants will be faced with physical exertion and psychologically stressful situations.”
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Carolina pottery festival returns November 5

The Carolina Pottery Festival returns for its 21st year on Saturday, November 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the LeGrand Center, 1800 E. Marion St. in Shelby, NC. This pottery festival attracts crowds of over 2000 pottery lovers with over 100 well-known regional potters showing and selling their work. It is one of the largest “pottery only” festivals in the southeast with a wide range of traditional and contemporary work that is functional, decorative, and sculptural. Artists are on hand to talk about their inspiration, methods of creation and answer any questions.
This festival was started by potters, for potters and continues to celebrate and honor the rich heritage of pottery in our region. “This is an excellent way to see so many different styles of pottery all under one roof,” stated Bobbi Black, one of the Festival founders. “Our goal has always been to showcase a wide variety of pottery and to give customers the opportunity to meet the potters while they shop.”
The pottery festival is coordinated by the Cleveland County Arts Council. “We are thrilled to be back this year with many returning potters as well as potters who are new to our festival,” commented Shearra Miller, Executive Director of the Arts Council.
Again, this year you will have the opportunity to purchase handmade and numbered NC ornaments by Vicki Gill. These unique ornaments are a lovely addition to any pottery lover’s collection. A limited number have been made.
Attendees can also register for a chance to win a $30 gift certificate that can be used during the festival at any vendor’s booth.
Parking is convenient and free.  Admission is $6.00 for those ages 13 and over. Tickets may be purchased in advance on-line at
For more information, contact the Cleveland County Arts Council, 704-484-2787 or visit or
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Kings Mountain Rotary Club President, Greg Shull (left), receives the Distinguished Rotarian Award presented by Peter Bagley. Photo by Amanda Justice

Distinguished Rotarian Award

Kings Mountain Rotary Club President, Greg Shull (left), receives the Distinguished Rotarian Award presented by Peter  Bagley.                                                  Photo by Amanda Justice

It’s Fall, Y’all!

By Loretta Cozart

As the thermometer reading drops each day, with afternoon temperatures rising into the 60s and 70s, it can be difficult to believe that fall has come. We have had a few frosts. Even so, the people of Kings Mountain love the fall and decorations around town attest. Spending time with friends and appreciating beautiful days make life more enjoyable this time of year. As you drive around town, take note
of the beautiful fall decorations.
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Congratulations to North School’s Fun-Run winners. Pictured L-R: Hunter Griffin(1/2 Mile, 1st Place), Alex Salgado(2 Mile, 1st Place), Coach McDaniel, Aiden Baker(1/2 Mile, 2nd Place), and Addy Bishop (1/2 Mile, 1st Place). Photo Anna Hughes

Congratulations to North School’s Fun-Run winners

. Pictured L-R: Hunter Griffin(1/2 Mile, 1st Place), Alex Salgado(2 Mile,  1st Place), Coach McDaniel, Aiden Baker(1/2 Mile, 2nd Place), and Addy Bishop  (1/2 Mile, 1st Place).

Photo Anna Hughes

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L-R: pictured holding the plaque is Principal Andrew Ruppe, student Caroline Ruffalo and presenter Mark McDaniel.

KMHS Athletic Department
Good Citizen Award
goes to Caroline Ruffalo

The Kings Mountain High School Athletic Department is pleased to announce their newest Good Citizen Caroline Ruffalo. Caroline is a fourth grader at North Elementary School and she is  epitome of an outstanding good citizen.
Caroline is helpful, hardworking, considerate and a great friend. She always helps students around her and has a good attitude. She is trustworthy, loving and kind. Every morning, Caroline greets everyone with a smile and says “good morning.”
Caroline is successful in the classroom and she is a member of the Cleveland County Book Club. She also excels in volleyball and gymnastics in her spare time.
She loves to hang out with all her brothers and sisters, parents and enjoys helping take care of her one year old niece,Rver
Caroline is the daughter of Tom and Sherri Rufalo.

PAWS for good behavior at North Elementary

North Elementary students earning 80 percent of their PAWS stamps for good behavior earned participation in the first nine weeks behavior reward, Horse Day! Activities included petting, grooming and feeding miniature horses and a full-size horse, learning about horse behavior and care, practicing controlling our bodies around them, crafts, games, seeing inside a horse trailer and demonstrations by KMHS Future Farmers Association students.

Photos by Anna Hughes
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Connie Phifer Savell pins the DAR Good Citizen medal on this year’s Col. Frederick Hambright DAR Good Citizen Railey Madison Bolt. Photo provided

DAR Good
Citizen named

Connie Phifer Savell, DAR Good Citizen Chair, for the Colonel Frederick Hambright Chapter presents Railey Madison Bolt daughter of Jonathan and Katie Bolt, the Kings Mountain High School DAR Good Citizen Award for 2022.
The DAR Good Citizens Award and Scholarship Contest, created in 1934, is intended to encourage and reward the qualities of good citizenship.
This award recognizes and rewards high school seniors who possess the qualities of dependability, service, leadership, and patriotism in their homes, schools, and communities. These students are selected by their teachers and peers because they demonstrate these qualities to an outstanding degree.
• This program is only open to students whose schools are accredited and in good standing with their state board of education.
• Only one student per year may be honored as a school’s DAR Good Citizen.
• United States citizenship is not required.
• Additional rules and guidelines can be obtained by contacting your local DAR chapter.
Once a student is chosen as their school’s DAR Good Citizen the student is invited to participate in the scholarship portion of the program. This consists of a personal statement and an essay. Student participation in the scholarship portion of the program is optional.
Scholarships are awarded to essay winners at the chapter, state, division, and national levels.
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Mark McDaniel presented the Good Citizen Award to Principal Holly Robinson and student Eli Deaton. Photo provided

KMHS Athletic Department
Good Citizen Award
goes to Eli Deaton

The Kings Mountain High School Athletic Department is pleased to announce their Good Citizen Award to Eli Deaton. Eli is the outstanding fourth grade student from West Elementary School.
There are a million positive things to say about Eli. He works hard in the classroom and has a positive attitude, while encouraging his peers. He always seems to be a friend to everyone.
Eli is kind to his classmates and includes everyone at recess. He is a great teammate. Eli plays soccer for Barca Academy in Huntersville where he plays center midfield and center back. He also enjoys playing basketball for the Kings Mountain YMCA.
Eli is the son of Leslie and Tyler Deaton. He has two sisters, Addison and Rory and one brother, Henry. He is the grandson of Pat and Don Potter and Donna and Jody Deaton.
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Seeds in Season will be held on October 29 at 5 p.m. The event will feature local food, farmers, chefs. Photo by McKenna Rhyne Photography

Seeds in Season
returns October 29

Seeds in Season, a fundraising event by Uptown Shelby, is scheduled for Saturday, October 29, at 5 p.m. The event celebrates local food, farmers, and chefs with you this autumn!
The event returns to the beloved long table format, set under the twinkling lights of the Bobby Bell Pavilion. Enjoy a plated meal that incorporates local ingredients prepared by local chefs for an incredible, one-of-a-kind experience.
The menu includes Passed Bites of Barbecued Carolina Oyster, Sour Corn Hoe Cakes/Candied Jalapeño/Clabber, Crazy Chinese Girl Satays, and Pimento Cheese Nabs followed by a four-course menu.
Course One includes a “Casar” Salad with Little Gem lettuce, roots, roasted squash, cured egg yolk, and black garlic vinaigrette. Course Two includes a Sweet Potato Story with sweet potato dumplings, leaves, and sorghum-sage butter. Course Three is Carolina White Shrimp with sweet chili glaze, mushroom, and winter radish. A(vegetarian option substitutes delicata squash for shrimp. Course Four includes Apple Charlotte with white chocolate and pecans.
Jamie Swofford, of Old North Farm / The Chef’s Farmer, curated the menu for this special event. Reserve your seats at a special early bird rate until Oct 7. All proceeds go to the Uptown Shelby Association to help support their work in the community.
Uptown Shelby needs volunteers to make this event a success! Another way to show your support is by signing up for a volunteer shift. For more information, call (704) 484-3100.
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Battle of Kings Mountain
commemoration Oct. 6-9

By Loretta Cozart

Kings Mountain National Military Park announced plans for activities commemorating the 242nd anniversary of the Battle of Kings Mountain.
On Thursday October 6, the Overmountain Men will tell the story of “The Night Before Kings Mountain” at Cowpens National Battlefield. Overmountain Victory Trail Ranger Will Caldwell will also be at the park with an information station about the trail. The program begins at 5:15 p.m. Full event details may be found on the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail Website.
• On Friday October 7, there will be three programs occurring throughout the day at Kings Mountain National Military Park.
• 11:00am is the wreath laying ceremony at the US Monument.
• 3:00pm, the Overmountain Men march into the amphitheater and tell the story of “The Night Before Kings Mountain” again.
• 7:00pm, guided lantern tours begin. The lantern tours require a reservation. Park staff will start taking reservations on September 23rd. Those who are interested in making a reservation may do so on or after September 23rd by calling 864-936-7921 extension 3.
On Saturday October 8 and Sunday October 9, there is a living history encampment at Kings Mountain National Military Park. The encampment will be from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, and 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday.
Information about the events at Kings Mountain National Military Park may be found on the park website.
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Woman’s Club
Fall Vendor Fair

By Loretta Cozart

GFWC NC Kings Mountain Woman’s Club announced their Fall Vendor event scheduled for Saturday, October 22 at 9 a.m. at the clubhouse at 108 W. Mountain Street in Kings Mountain.
There are few remaining spots left for vendors.
More information can be found at the club’s Facebook page. Just search for GFWC NC Kings Mountain Woman’s Club to message the club.

North Elementary
Reading Buddy

By Anna Hughes

North Elementary School students have a special visitor and reading buddy one day per week. Dixie is a 10-year-old Boykin Spaniel and a certified therapy dog, through Therapy Dogs International.
She has been specially trained and evaluated for outstanding temperament and for the ability to provide comfort and support for children. Dixie enjoys lying by students while getting petted as they read a book to her and greeting children in the hallway between readers. She even makes visits to classrooms where students can pet and talk to her.
This "Tail Waggin' Tutor' program builds excitement about reading and may motivate a child to go home and read to their own dog. Dixie also helps children develop a better understanding of a dog, such as how to safely pet and interact with a dog, practice empathy and social skills, and learn how to teach a dog tricks.
North students have recently learned how to help teach her how to "give paw". Studies have shown a decrease in blood pressure and stress levels during Therapy Dog visits, and overall increased happiness, calmness, and emotional well-being. When Dixie is off duty, she enjoys playing fetch with tennis balls, camping, going to Lowes, and going on car rides.  Dixie's handler is North's school psychologist, Krista Kiser.  
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Mark McDaniel presented the plaques to Principal Miriam Harvey and student Carson Epps.

KMHS Athletic Dept.
Good Citizen Award
goes to Evan Goodnite

The Kings Mountain High School Athletic Department is pleased to announce their Good Citizen Award goes to Carson Epps,  the outstanding fourth grade
student from East Elementary School.
Carson is a talented and hard working student. He completes all tasks to the best of his ability and works well with others. He enjoys answering questions in class. Carson is responsible and challenges himself with setting and achieving various goals.
Carson likes playing basketball and baseball. He is a leader on the court  as well as often getting together teams to play basketball and recess.
East School sends best wishes on all Carson’s successes now and in the future.
Carson is the son of Megan Carson (mom) and Jeffrey and Kristie Epps (dad and step-mom). His sister is Jaden Epps.
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Fall Paint and Sip at Cleveland County Arts Council

Join Cleveland County Arts Council for an evening Paint and Sip session featuring beautiful fall Pumpkins September 27 from 6-8 p.m., where you can create your own fun masterpiece in just a couple hours. Worried you don't have any experience painting? We will teach you stroke-by-stroke how to get the painting you desire. Whether you are looking for a fun night out with your friends or just trying to find your creative side, we will make it happen! The event is open to those 16-years old and older.
   Cindy Sanders is in her 21st year of teaching art for Cleveland County Schools. She has taught at KMHS for the last 10 years and before that she taught at the elementary and middle school levels. She loves to teach all ages of students. Cindy has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from the University of NC at Charlotte and a MAE​​d in Art Education from East Carolina University.
  Wear old clothes and bring your favorite beverage and a snack to share (optional) Pre-registration (payment) is required for classes. You may pay with PayPal, can call the Arts Council at 704-484-2787, or visit the office to pay. You MUST pay for a class to be considered registered. ALL classes are held at the Arts Council unless otherwise stated. Masks will be worn, and social distancing will be enforced. Minimum number per class is four.

KMHS Homecoming Queen
to be crowned Friday

The Kings Mountain High student body has chosen five senior girls as finalists for the title of Kings Mountain High 2022 homecoming queen. The queen will be crowned during halftime of Friday night’s football game between the Mountaineers and Gastonia Hunter Huss Huskies at John Gamble Stadium.
   Attendants for the ceremony will be 2021 Homecoming Shaniah Wright and KMHS principal Dr. Morehead.
   The five finalists are:
• Paige Bagwell, daughter of Brent and Shannon Bagwell, nominated by the Beta Club. Paige is being escorted by her brothers, Daniel and DJ Bagwell.
• Megan Carley, daughter of Kathleen and Dennis Carley, nominated by the Math Club. Megan is being escorted by her father, Mr. Dennis Carley.
• Brayden Deaton, daughter of Ashley and Brad Deaton, nominated by the Science Club. Brayden is being escorted by her father, Mr. Brad Deaton.
• Katelynn Platt, daughter of Shannon and Edmond Platt, nominated by the Interact Club. Katelynn is being escorted by her father, Mr. Edmond Platt.
• Olivia Wilson, daughter of Jeff and Erin Wilson, nominated by Kings Revue. Olivia is being escorted by her father, Mr. Jeff Wilson.
   Other students nominated include:
• Hannah Bess, daughter of Charlotte Bess and Kodi Reid, nominated by FCCLA.
• Railey Bolt, daughter of Katie and Jonathan Bolt, nominated by ITS.
• Maley Bridges, daughter of Chad and Keisha Bridges, nominated by the HECS.
• Taniya Brown, daughter of Robert Brown Jr and Tinika Brown, nominated by Varsity Cheerleader.
• Jackie Echols, daughter of Kevin and Mindy Echols, nominated by the Symphonic Chorale.
• Katelyn Fleming, daughter of Julie and Jeff Fleming, nominated by FCA.
• Saylor Goforth, daughter of Brett and Jody Goforth, nominated by Milestones Yearbook.
• Anna Holder, daughter of Grant and Angela Holder, nominated by the Ambassadors.
• Maggie Honeycutt, daughter of Susan and Shane Crawford , nominated by Art Club.
• Ashley Laye, daughter of Greg and Jennifer Laye, nominated by Mounties Make a Wish.
• Taylor McSwain, daughter of Chad and Jennifer McSwain, nominated by KMBA.
• Cheyenne Mullinax, daughter of Eva and Steve Mullinax, nominated by Drama Club.
• September Perry, daughter of Sandy and Tip Phomsom, nominated by KM Marching Band.
• Karlie Postell, daughter of Wayne Worcester and Carolyn Postell, nominated by the Caged Bird Society.
• Carter Grace Reed, daughter of Mara Leigh and Jamie McGinnis, nominated by Tri-M Music Honors Society.
• Autumn Short, daughter of Richard Childers and Rikki Childers, nominated by Anime Club.
• Taylor Smith, daughter of Kolita Williams and Glenda Tate Williams, nominated by Student Participation Organization.
• Sindy Ulloa Vasquez, daughter of Maria Vasquez and Kelvin Ulloa, nominated by NAHS

Auditions open this week for two Christmas plays at KMLT

By Loretta Cozart

Auditions for The Best Christmas Pageant Ever and Three Wishes for Christmas are being held on Thursday Sept. 15, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Joy Theatre in Kings Mountain, and on Saturday Sept. 17 at 10 a.m. -12 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Kings Mountain. Auditions continue at the Joy Theater on Sunday, Sept. 18, from 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. Ages 8 to 25 years old are invited to audition.
Performances are to be held in November on Friday 11 and 18 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday 12 and 19 at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday 13 and 20 at 3:00 p.m.
School performances are scheduled for November 15 and 16 at 9:30 a.m.
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever is a hilarious Christmas classic, with a couple struggling to put on a church Christmas pageant and is faced with casting the Herdman kids, probably the most inventively awful kids in history. You won't believe the mayhem - and the fun - when the Herdmans collide with the Christmas story head on!
Three Wishes for Christmas is a play by Meredith Bridges. In the play, Peter Pakowski is sure that this Christmas is going to be the most miserable one of his life. Money is tight, so he knows Old Saint Nick won’t be bringing him the gifts that he wants, and what’s more, he is going to have to spend Christmas with his crazy cousin, Bertram! So, when Peter’s little sister convinces him to make a wish on a special Christmas star, he doesn’t have high hopes. But when a star fairy that only he can see appears in his living room, things liven up quickly! With an invisible fairy guest and three wishes that he must use before Christmas is over, Peter’s holiday celebrations with his large family are looking to be much more interesting than he thought!
WHO can audition?
• Ages 8 - 25
WHAT to expect at auditions:
• friendly faces greeting you inside the door
• arrive early enough to fill out form; be prepared to write a short bio
• check the rehearsal/performance calendar for personal conflicts
• auditions will be in groups of 10-15
• only directors and group of auditionees in audition area
• each auditionee will read from segments of the scripts
• you may audition for 1 or both plays, please indicate on audition form
• you may leave as soon as your audition is over
WHAT the directors are looking for:
• good projection and articulation
• character development
• big facial expressions
• demonstrative body language
• voice characterization
• eye contact
Audition Sign Up link:

Cleveland County Music Hall of Fame
to host
 Inaugural Induction Ceremony, September 17

The Cleveland County Music Hall of Fame will host their Inaugural Induction Ceremony, Saturday, September 17 at the Don Gibson Theatre in Shelby.
Along with the performers being inducted into the Hall, two songs performed by former Cleveland County residents Alicia Bridges and Patty Loveless will be inducted as well.
Released in 1978, Disco classic “I Love the Nightlife”, co-written and performed by Lawndale native Alicia Bridges, went to number two on the US Billboard National Disco Action Top 30 chart for two weeks. It became a crossover hit, peaking at number five on the Billboard Hot 100, and found worldwide success, reaching the top 10 in Australia, Belgium, Canada, the Netherlands, and South Africa. A re-release in 1994 allowed the song to reach number four in New Zealand and number five in Iceland.
Released in May 1989 as a single from former Kings Mountain resident Patty Loveless’ third
studio album Honky Tonk Angel, “Timber, I’m Falling in Love” was Loveless’ first No. 1 record on Billboard’s Hot Country Singles chart. The song charted for 18 weeks on the Billboard Hot Country Singles and Tracks chart, reaching the top of the chart during the week of August 12, 1989.
Performing both songs during the induction ceremony is one of Cleveland County’s most popular bands Crimson Rose.
Tickets are still available for this special event. To purchase tickets, visit the Don Gibson Theatre box office or purchase online at
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The Kings Mountain Gateway Trail committee announces their brand new four-seater John Deer Gator. Many trail sponsors helped with the purchase of this important vehicle, which will be used to monitor the 7 1/2 miles of trail.  

Photo by Shirley Brutko
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Local artist support grant recipients exhibit

The Cleveland County Arts Council is pleased to present an exceptional exhibit featuring artwork by recent Cleveland County Regional Artists Grant Recipients: Regina Bos, David Caldwell, Beth E. Coiner, Matthew Duffus, Darrin Griggs, Allegra Klett-Wilson, Doug Knotts, Ron Philbeck, and Chrys Riviere-Blalock.
The Artist Support Grant, funded by the N.C. Arts Council, provides the opportunity for regional consortia of local arts councils to award project grants to artists in their regions. These grants support professional artists in any discipline and at any stage in their careers to pursue projects that further their artistic and professional development.
Over the past 26 years Cleveland County has had 42 artists receive this grant, some of them multiple times. The artists who are part of this exhibit received the grant during the past 10 years. Join us to celebrate these artists and their accomplishments.
The exhibit will be up through Sept. 29. The Arts Council is open Monday – Friday from 9:00 – 400 and Saturday, 10:00 – 2:00 and is located at 111 S. Washington Street in Shelby.
   Darrin Griggs, 55, is a printmaker producing primarily woodcut but also lino prints. All his prints are from his own original drawings, mostly of his environment on the family farm in Grover, where he is at least the fifth generation to live on the same property in Cleveland County. Darrin moved back to NC in 2019 after 24 years in Oslo, Norway, where he worked as journalist for a global business newspaper, while traveling Europe, Asia, and the Mideast as a specialist in the sector for offshore oil and gas.
   A graduate of Shelby High School, Darrin began drawing well before grade school and has continued all his life. He originally started his studies at Western Carolina University as a drawing student for several years before focusing on creative writing. After earning his Bachelor of Arts degree in English, writing and editing, at WCU, graduating summa cum laude, Darrin went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing at UNC Greensboro. After 31 years as a journalist, he is now spending his time switching back and forth between his twin loves of writing and drawing, by working on a novel, drawing, and producing art prints.
   Matthew Duffus is the author of the novel “Swapping Purples” for Yellows, the collection Dunbar’s Folly and Other Stories, and the poetry chapbook Problems of the Soul and Otherwise. He was born in Pennsylvania and spent time living in Maryland, Indiana, Mississippi, Minnesota, and Tennessee, before finally settling in North Carolina, where he has lived for the past fifteen years. Along the way, he received graduate degrees in English and creative writing from the University of Mississippi and the University of Minnesota and worked as a graduate instructor and research assistant, apartment caretaker, bookseller, concessions supervisor, and residence hall director. Matthew taught at Gardner-Webb University, but has recently accepted a position at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana He can be found online at & on twitter
   Beth E. Coiner is a modern dancer turned jeweler. She approaches each design much like a piece of choreography, drawing from the inherent movement found in natural and architectural landscapes. Her tiny sculpture designs are textured and intimate, creating wearable urban and rural vistas. She finds specimens in the natural world and transform them into wearable art. Her bespoke jewelry process refers back to an old style of jewelry making. It’s an intimate, tailor-made process of repurposing under-worn, or family heirloom jewelry into a re-imagined design for my clients. Each project has their own unique stories, little memories. Memories that remain after the sentimental materials have undergone their transformation into a new design.
   She likes to think there are similar parallels along the idea of intimacy with both her dances and jewelry for her collections and bespoke projects. When choreographing a solo or duet, instead of a large group, the dance is scaled down to focus on gestures and an unspoken narrative to tell a story. With her jewelry, the dance piece is present on a very macro scale. It reveals itself in the curvature of a tiny shell, or the repetition of shapes and textures, as well as how each piece relates to the body. In my creative process, the jewelry is the solo dancer, and the wearer is the stage. When Beth isn’t at her workbench making jewelry, she’s usually dancing.
   Born and raised in the suburbs of Vancouver, BC, Canada, Allegra Klett-Wilson made her way south via Seattle WA. She had been designing & crafting jewelry for over 20 years and officially established Allegra Nichole Designs in 2014 in Kings Mountain. In the fall of 2021, she moved her studio and home to Union Grove, N.C. where she is surrounded by 6 acres of woods. The area is rich in culture, history, and is so peaceful and inspiring. Allegra’s work embodies a unique and eclectic collection of jewelry combining silversmithing with natural stones. Self-taught and not liking to follow the rules, she creates intuitively, letting her materials do the talking. Having previously received a Regional Artists Project Grant, Allegra purchased a hydraulic press that changed how she creates her designs. She discovered the long-lost art of Die Struck Jewelry and is now able to create timeless and modern heirlooms to be passed on for generations. Her designs combine natural gemstones, pearls, Czech glass, and die struck impressions in sterling silver.
   Doug Knotts has been making pottery since 1972. When he was a sophomore in college, his major was English. “I decided to switch to an Art major after a couple of ceramic courses,” he said. After graduation, Knotts worked as a park potter in Alabama. It was production, but he was able to teach children that came through the park. He then worked at Toe River Arts Council in Mitchell County NC and after that he joined the NC Visiting Artist Association. He was placed at a Community College and worked at different schools in that area teaching and producing. Eventually he became known for his bird pots. He got the idea of birds from his grandfather. “He worked at a hospital, and he would carve birds out of wood and give them to the sick children in the hospital. I make bird pots because of those experiences; also, to continue to sell pots I needed something different.” Today, he is Associate Professor of Art at Gardner-Webb University.
   Studio Woodcarver and Sculptor since 1994, David Caldwell’s experience includes carving for the Shelby Carousel restoration, Cornel Zimmer Organ Builders, and Bob Trotman Studios. His work can be seen in churches from New York to San Francisco. He is a three-time recipient of the NC Regional Artist Grant. Exhibitions include: GreenHill (NC), Gardner-Webb University (NC), Tryon Fine Arts Center (NC), Lauren Rogers Museum Of Art (MS) Teaching: Penland School of Craft, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Cleveland County Arts Council.
   Regina Bos is a graphic designer, painter, and small business owner. A graduate of Monmouth University, she earned her bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts in Computer Graphics and Design. Regina has always been creative with exploring artistic mediums and began focusing her work within the Encaustic Medium in 2014. Mainly self-taught, she has also attended numerous workshops around the country. In 2018, the Encaustic Museum of Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, added her art to their Permanent Collection. Regina was a featured artist at the Propeller Art Gallery in Toronto during the International Layers of Meaning Encaustic Exhibition and received an award in the Annual Visual Harvest Exhibition with the Gaston Art Guild in the Rauch Gallery at Gaston College. Most recently, Regina was a grant recipient from the North Carolina Art Council, Mecklenburg Arts & Science Council, and the Cleveland County Arts Council.
   Ron Philbeck is a potter specializing in wheel thrown, sodium vapor glazed pottery. The limited production and one-of-a-kind pots are created at his studio in Shelby, N.C. Ron believes that pots should be well made, pleasant to look at, and easy to use. His work can be found in collections and kitchens around the world.
   Painter Chrys Riviere-Blalock studied at Meredith College, Parsons The New School for Design, and Appalachian State University. She has taught studio and art history classes in colleges and universities for over 25 years, served as an exhibition juror and visiting artist at colleges in North and South Carolina, and led undergraduate art travel/study programs in France. She is a 2011 and 2014 recipient of the NC Regional Artist Project Grant from the NC Arts Council. Her work was selected for a solo exhibit on view 24/7 at the Hearst Tower Plaza during the 2012 Democratic National Convention and has been shown in NY at Artists Space and the Prince Street Gallery, in MS at the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art, in NC at GreenHill Center, the Bascom, the Hickory Museum of Art, & by the Chapel Hill Public Arts Commission. Artist residencies include Mountain Gateway Museum and the Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences, where she is a 2014 Hambidge Fellow.
   In 2020 she was invited by the US State Dept. to exhibit work at the US Embassy in Riga, Latvia as part of their “Art in Embassies” program. Her work is in both national & international public & private collections.
   For more information about the exhibit, call the Arts Council, 704-484-2787 or visit
   Artists who are interested in applying for the an Artist Support Grant can receive more information at: Artists representing visual, craft, performing, traditional, and interdisciplinary art forms are encouraged to apply. The Artist Support Grants will support projects occurring between January 1, 2023, and December 31, 2023, but all funds should be expended by June 30, 2023. Artists may request up to $3,000. The deadline is Noon, September 12th.

Tickets still available for CC Music Hall
of Fame’s Inaugural Induction Ceremony

The Cleveland County Music Hall of Fame in partnership with the Don Gibson Theatre will host their inaugural induction ceremony Saturday, September 17.
Earl Scruggs and Don Gibson, both natives of Shelby, highlight the first class. Joining Scruggs and Gibson are legendary disc jockey Hugh Dover, who worked at local stations WOHS in Shelby and WKMT in Kings Mountain, Bobby Rogers, owner of Bobby’s Music Shop and Rogers Theatre, Kings Mountain native and renowned record producer, Ron Feemster, and JB and Kathleen Lewis as well as Herman and Jean Dawson, owners of J&K Records.
Performers included in this event include The Jacktown Ramblers, Carolina Quartet, Dale Brittain with Randy Saxon, and Randy Escobedo.
The Dancing Fleas, Chris Ferree and the Medicine Crow and Bobby Hicks will join the performers on stage with a full stage jam session at the end of the program.
Dinner will begin at 6:00 p.m., followed by the ceremony at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are still on sale for this event at Don Gibson Theater’s website under upcoming events. Great food, great music and honoring our musical pioneers! You don’t want to miss this event.

Six-Week ladies
Bible study begins at

Pfeiffer Cafe & Confections, Sept. 7

A ladies county-wide Bible study will begin  at Pfeiffer Cafe & Confections, located at 116 E. Warren Street, Shelby on Wednesday, September 7 through October 12 from 9 AM-11AM.
Best selling author and local Cleveland County native Cindi Wood will be leading  the six-week study "Anonymous" .
Reserve your spot by texting your name and contact info to: 704-418-1199. Bible study books will be available for  $15 which includes registration.
Cindi recently began exploring the idea of doing a county-wide Bible study with her friends. Their goal was to reach out to women to share their intense love for Jesus and the joy that He infuses into their lives. They wanted the location to be centrally located in the county, so that people from all over could get there easily. It needed to be a fun place to meet where women could feel comfortable, have fun conversation and good food to eat.
Steve and Vicky Knapp, owners of Pfeiffer Cafe &
Confections welcomed the
opportunity to offer their restaurant as a place to meet before they open for lunch.
Cindi shared, "The main purpose for the study is to feed our souls. Never has there been a  time when so many are disheartened and discouraged and need hope.
We want this to be a time that those who are in relationship with Jesus would come and join in and be encouraged. We also welcome those who have never explored this relationship, to join the group and learn what having fellowship with Jesus does for you. He is the answer to everything you are going through. It will be a wonderful time of gathering.
The foundation of the 'Anonymous' study will be in scripture. We will take a look at the lives of four nameless women in the
Bible whose lives were radically changed when they came in contact with Jesus.
If you know Him, be there. If you don't know Him, come and find out about Him. God has great things in store. I can sense that God is ready to do a mighty work in those who turn to Him. There is still time to register.
If you have done the 'Anonymous' study before, please come anyway, as there will be fresh new teaching. If you are hesitant about being in a crowd of women you don't know, don't worry, God will make it ok."
Cindi is a sought after speaker and Bible teacher, guiding women to deal with daily stress by experiencing a practical and deep relationship with Jesus. To view Cindi's personal message about the "Anonymous" study  go to: or to view her latest book "Blood Clots" visit her website at:

Patrick Sr. Center
Yard Sale Sept. 16

The Patrick Senior Center in Kings Mountain will be hosting a Yard Sale/Bake Sale/Craft Sale Fundraiser on Friday, September 16, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. The event will be held inside and outside, rain or shine.
The public is welcome to come shop that day. Anyone age 55 and up who would like to rent a table to sell items can call Karen Grigg at the Patrick Center at 704-734-0447 (please reserve by September 9). The cost is $5 per table and proceeds will go to our SHOP Food Pantry (Seniors Helping Other People).
The Patrick Center will have a bake sale table at the event and will be accepting baked goods to sell at the table. If you would like to donate a baked good, please call the Patrick Center or bring it by on the morning of the sale. Come enjoy a morning of shopping while supporting our efforts to feed seniors in need in the Kings Mountain area! The Patrick Center is located at 909 E King Street in Kings Mountain.
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L to R – Patti McMurry, Vice President of Access; Pete Brunnick, HPCCR CEO; Myra McGinnis, HCC President; Pam Sharts, Marketing, PR, & Special Events Manager; Rachel Hill, Vice President of Homecare Services; Jenny Sharp, Vice President of Quality & Compliance.

Hospice Cleveland County receives Non-Profit of the Year Award

Hospice Cleveland County was recently named “Non-Profit of the Year” at the Cleveland County Chamber’s Annual Awards Banquet. The event was attended by Chamber members, board members, present and future officers, and ambassadors. All guests enjoyed a lively night of celebrating the local business community.
“Hospice Cleveland County is honored to win this prestigious award voted on by members of the Chamber,” said Myra McGinnis, Hospice Cleveland County President. “It is a privilege to provide end-of-life care for people in our community. This special recognition is a tribute to the exceptional services delivered by our dedicated staff members.” said McGinnis.
Pete Brunnick, Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region CEO, also attended the event, along with several Hospice Cleveland County staff members. Hospice Cleveland County merged with Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region in 2020 to prepare for significant changes in healthcare, including the spread of for-profit hospices.
“Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region has a strong presence in both Carolinas and frequently competes against private equity backed hospices. The private equity model puts a lot of pressure on the organization to produce a profit. Being a not-for-profit allows us to invest more in our organization and direct our efforts towards patient care. For us, the reward is providing great care and knowing that we have made a difference in our community, we have made a difference in the care of families and patients, and the community is a better place because we’re here.”
Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region serves thousands of patients in 27 counties across the Carolinas. It operates three hospice houses in Mecklenburg County and one in Laurens County, SC. Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region also operates multiple offices in nearby counties. It was North Carolina's first hospice.
Hospice Cleveland County serves individuals in Cleveland, Gaston, Rutherford, and Burke counties. Hospice care is provided to people at home, Wendover Hospice House in Shelby, Testa Family Hospice House in Kings Mountain, skilled nursing facilities, and assisted living facilities. More than 16,000 people have been served since its inception in 1985.
If you would like to know more about Hospice and Palliative Care Services, or advance care planning, please visit our website at or contact us at 704-487-4677.    

Nuevo Pacto Wesleyan Church
to launch on  September 3

Nuevo Pacto Wesleyan Church will officially launch on Saturday, September 3rd at 2:00 PM in the Family Life Center of East Gold Street Wesleyan Church (701 East Gold Street, Kings Mountain, NC)!  East Gold is honored to host this developing congregation of Hispanic Christians!  In less than one year, they have established a core group of approximately 20 committed Kingdom building laborers.
YOU are invited to the launch service where those gathered will celebrate Jesus; celebrate this new church; enjoy great fellowship and eat great food!  Have you ever tried Cuban food?  It is fantastic!
Pastor Scott Whitney (East Gold Street Wesleyan Church) will formally welcome the new church and celebrate their partnership in ministry together in Kings Mountain. District Superintendent Reverend Jerry Lumston will be present to welcome the new church to the North Carolina West District of the Wesleyan Church and welcome Pastors Jose Rodriguez and Elizabeth Padron, as pastors of the new congregation. Mayor Scott Neisler will be present to welcome the new church to the City of Kings Mountain.
This will be an exciting time!  Please come join us!
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Ormand descendants gathered for the photo at the Old Furnace in Bessemer City on Saturday, July 30 for the 125th reunion. Due to the lens used, the distortion makes the furnace appear smaller and the people on the edges of the photo appear larger. (Photo provided)

125th Ormand Family Reunion held July 30

By Loretta Cozart

The first Ormand Old Furnace Family Reunion was held in 1897. One hundred twenty-five years later, the family still gathers at the Old Furnace in Bessemer City to celebrate their family and history.
The family gathered at the Old Furnace Picnic Grounds, 517 Long Creek Rd, Bessemer City on July 30 to celebrate and enjoy lunch together. Afterward, the family gathered in front of the Old Furnace as 70 family members posed for posterity.
James Ormand built his furnace as part of the Ormand Mining Company, which was part of Tryon County. The furnace was known for processing iron ore, and it is believed that iron processed here was used to make cannon balls for the American Revolution.
All Ormand/Ormond/Ormon/Orman families are included in this reunion each year. For more information or to be added to their list, contact
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Jesse Hughes

Jesse Hughes interns
in Washington, DC

Jesse Hughes, a rising Junior at Liberty University, is interning for Jim Jordan with the Judiciary Committee in Washington, D.C. as part of the University’s Washington Fellowship Program, designed to send students to Washington, D.C.
After graduating from Kings Mountain High School in 2020, he went to Liberty to pursue a double major in Law & Policy: Pre-Law and History, as well as a minor in Theology.
Hughes’ parents are Jeff and Kim Hughes of the Dixon Community.