Thursday, May 15, 2014

Sculpture on the Green Comes to Pittsboro

The following article about Sculpture on the Green first appeared in the Chatham County Line :

Sculpture on the Green Comes to Pittsboro by Deborah R. Meyer

(Author’s note – I love sculpture. For many years, I have written about it, and for the past 12 years, my husband and I have put on a large sculpture show with over 75 artists at our horse farm in Chatham County. So when Paul Horne, Parks Planner for the Town of Pittsboro, asked me to help him found a new sculpture exhibit at Mary Hayes Barber Holmes Park, I jumped at the opportunity. We hope the community will jump with joy at this extraordinary chance to come picnic among the artwork.)

Sculpture by Chatham Sculptor Edwin White

Sculptor Jeff Hackney always has designs dancing in his head. But there they do not remain. He is continually bringing these ideas to life with works in private and public collections.
“One of the reasons I love sculpture is because it is an art form that interacts with the environment,” Hackney said.

During the first annual Sculpture on the Green event, May 17 through June 15 at Pittsboro’s Mary Hayes Barber Holmes Park, viewers will get a chance to see how two of Hackney’s pieces converse with their surroundings.  Joining Hackney with their own unique and provocative sculptural works will be Edwin White, Janice Rieves, Joe Kenlan, Mark Elliott, Forrest Greenslade, Jenny Marsh, Steven Silverleaf, Andrew Dixon, Steve Cote, Stevenson McNeill, Hunter Levinsohn, and Mark Hewitt. The WingNut Artists, a newly-formed group of artists that focus on creating large-scale installations, are also participating with a piece that invites viewers to play. It will be a fun and intriguing show for all ages and the reception on Saturday, May 17, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., is especially geared towards children. Tokyo Rosenthal, who has traveled the world performing, is providing live music. The park is a perfect place to have a picnic but for those who take a break on the weekends from preparing food, a food cart or two will be on site. Throughout the opening reception, Sandi Adams, the founder of SandiCastles, will be on site building a sand sculpture and offering demonstrations. Adams began working in sand in 2008 and just a year later, took first place in the adult division at Castles and Scoops.

At 12:3 p.m., Forrest Greenslade will do a reading from his wonderful children’s book “Haicooo: Little Poems for Children,” that he collaborated on with his daughter Kathryn Armstrong:  she did the delightful artwork and Greenslade wrote the haiku. Greenslade’s sculptural contribution to the exhibit will be a green man, not to be found on the ground but up in a tree.

“I love making sculpture because of what one learns about creating two-dimensional art after one makes a piece of three-dimensional art,” Levinsohn said. “There is something about the tactile nature of creating in three-dimensions that makes it easier to draw.”

Children will be awestruck by Levinsohn’s enormous, prehistoric snake sculpture and feel the magic of her piece, “Open” which has 44 cranes hung from tree branches.

Andrew Dixon’s interactive piece “Qubularspun” has a kinetic element that is activated by slowly pushing any of the four top corners of the cube with one’s hand. His other piece, “Motion of DaVinci’s Helicopter,” was just completed before the show. “Creating sculpture is exciting,” Dixon said. “The process of creation that frees the image from my mind does totally remove the mundane thought construct dictated by every day life.”

The idea for Sculpture on the Green came to the Town of Pittsboro’s Park Planner Paul Horne one day while he was watching a presentation about a great annual sculpture show that the Town of Cary hosts. “Every other slide I recognized the works of Chatham artists, so it was obvious that our sculptors needed a venue closer to home,” said Horne, who hopes that this will become an annual event and grow over time.

The 10-acre Mary Holmes Park, 304 Old Rock Springs Cemetery Road, that will host the exhibit, has received a Recognition award from the American Society of Landscape Architects at its recent Tri-State Conference in Asheville. Other candidates being considered were among top projects in Georgia and South Carolina as well as North Carolina.

The opening reception is free. Questions? Email Paul Horne 

When there is sculpture involved, there is a guarantee of memorable  times.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Sculpture on the Green, Saturday May 17

Fearrington Village Resident Forrest Greenslade is a man of many talents, and fortunately for the residents of Chatham County, he is very generous in sharing them.
This Saturday, at the opening reception for the first Town of Pittsboro sculpture show Sculpture on the Green, viewers will get to see Greenslade’s latest creation, a Green Man, and hear him read at 12:30 p.m. from children’s poetry book “Haicooo: Little Poems for Children.”  In addition to the wonderful sculptures sited throughout the Mary Hayes Barber Holmes Park, attendees to the reception, that runs from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., will be treated to live music by Tokyo Rosenthal, a sand sculpture demonstration by award winning sand sculptor Sandi Adams, and bubbles!  All is free. The show will be at the park, which is at 304 Old Rock Springs Cemetery Road, through June 15.
“Haicooo” Little Poems for Children,” was written by Greenslade. The book’s delightful drawings were done by his daughter Kathryn Armstrong.  “My green men sculptures are the most popular pieces that I made,” Greenslade said.  This one I made for the Sculpture on the Green is one by two feet and hangs on a wall or a tree. He is concrete over a steel mesh armature, with a beard made of 100-year-old reclaimed tin roof tiles.  He has a tarnished bronze patina over the concrete. He also has my very last set of antlers. I am in search of antlers and horns.”

A clay work by renowned potter Mark Hewitt will be on exhibit during the opening. Other artists include Jeff Hackney, Edwin White, Janice Rieves, Joe Kenlan, Jenny Marsh, Andrew Dixon, Steve Cote, Stevenson McNeil, Hunter Levinsohn, and as well The WingNut Artists, a group of folks who have come together to create large-scale installations. 
Bring a picnic or take advantage of the food trucks that will be at the park party, Tailgater Toby (, and Little Dippers Italian Ices. 
The idea for this show came from Paul Horne, Parks Planer for the Town of Pittsboro who wanted a venue in Pittsboro to highlight the marvelous talent of Chatham County sculptors.
Look for this show to become an annual event celebrating our rich, local sculptural talent, the beauty of the award-winning Mary Hayes Barber Holmes Park, and you, our valued citizens!

-Deborah Meyer, Sculpture on the Green Event Coordinator

Sculpture on the Green 2014

Sculpture on the Green 
Sculpture Show at Mary Holmes Park
304 Old Rock Spring Cemetery Rd
Saturday May 17 11am - 2pm

Featured Sculptors:
  • Edwin White
  • Forrest Greenslade
  • Jeff Hackney
  • Janice Rieves
  • Joe Kenlan
  • The WingNut Artists
  • Jenny Marsh
  • Andrew Dixon
  • Steve Cote 
  • Stevenson McNeill
  • Hunter Levinsohn
  • Mark Hewitt
  • Sandi Adams
  • Tailgater Toby
  • Little Dippers Italian Ice
  • Picnic on the lawn
  • Tokyo Rosental
Kiddo Activities:
  • Live Sandsculpture Demo (secret tips revealed)
  • Giant Bubbles
  • Sidewalk Chalk 
  • Haiku Reading at 12:30

Monday, April 28, 2014

Wake County Plans to Protect 30% of the County's Land Area

Kudos to Wake County, the first in the state to develop a comprehensive open space program.  Their goal is to protect permanently about 165,000 acres from development, or about 30% of their land area. The idea is to link the properties into a cohesive network.  What a great opportunity for Wake County citizens who approved the first open space bonds in 2000. Learn more in an excellent article in today's Raleigh News and Observer.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Tri-State Recognition Award for Mary Holmes Park

A Pittsboro Park has won another award from the American Society of Landscape Architects.  Mary Hayes Barber Holmes Park received a Recognition Award at the recent Tri-State Conference in Asheville NC.  The field was very competitive featuring of some of the best projects from North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.  Our popular park was designed by Lappas and Havener (now Surface 678) and Pittsboro Parks Planner Paul Horne. 

This park had previously won an NCASLA Honor Award at the state level in 2012.

Mary Holmes Park is very representative of the ethic and defining characteristics of Pittsboro Parks. It emphasizes community place-making, high quality understated design, inclusion of the arts and modeled environmentally sustainable practices with inclusion of its raingarden, living roof gazebo, and permeable paver parking lot. Natural playground features figure prominently. The park was built on a shoestring budget and the Town received a 2000 % return on its investment – this does not even factor in increased property values around the park or the positive impact on sales that the park has on the Powell Place development in which it’s located.

The park has continued to evolve to best fit the diverse needs of its users.  

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Spring Athletics Registrations

The Pittsboro area offers lots of opportunity for spring structured sports or other athletic programming. The Chatham Soccer League, for instance,  is conducting their spring registration drive now, and there are multiple offerings via Chatham County Parks and Recreation's relatively new online registration system. Finally, the Town is still accepting applications for Spring Tennis Clinics which start in a few short weeks.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

2014 Exploring Nature in Chatham Series

The Chatham Conservation Partnership is once again offering its Exploring Nature in Chatham Series. These are great ways to get out and appreciate the great natural resources in our backyard.

Sunday, April 13th from 1:30 to 3:30 PM: Wetlands Restoration at Pittsboro’s Town Lake Park (Free)

Discover “Pittsboro’s Hidden Treasure”, a 36 acre park with lakes and trails near downtown Pittsboro. Our guide will be Dr. Karen Hall with NC State University, who will talk about the wetlands restoration project in the impoundment area of Robeson Creek at Pittsboro’s Town Lake Park. Impaired by aquatic weeds and pollution, the upper and lower lakes have undergone a restoration project to improve water quality and wildlife habitat. Meet in the parking lot of Town Lake Park in Pittsboro. Directions to Town Lake Park: From US 64 West in downtown Pittsboro, turn south on NC Highway 87 South / NC Highway 902 West. Go 0.5 mile and Town Lake Park is on the left. Register for this free tour by calling 919-545-8044.

newest trail section of Town Lake Park

Saturday, May 3rd from 9:00 AM to 12:00 Noon: Geological Hike in the Jordan Dam Area (Free)

Join Phil Bradley with the NC Geological Survey on a guided hike along portions of the Poe’s Ridge Game Land Trail in the B. Everett Jordan Dam area. Learn about the 600 million years of geologic history that helped shape the landscape we see today. The hike will be approximately 3 miles long over uneven terrain. Wear sturdy shoes or boots. Bring water and snacks. Picnic tables are available so bring a picnic lunch to enjoy after the outing. Meet at the B. Everett Jordan Dam Visitor Assistance Center on 2080 Jordan Dam Road in Moncure. Register for this free trip by calling 919-545-8044.

Sunday, June 8th from 1:30 to 3:30 PM: Bynum Upriver Paddle ($25 Per Person)

Paddle upriver of the Bynum dam on the Haw River with a naturalist guide with the Haw River Canoe and Kayak Company. Because of its biological and ecological significance, land on both sides of the Haw River upriver of the dam at Highway 15-501 in Bynum is part of the Haw Slopes State Natural Area. A diversity of habitats includes rich forested slopes, islands, rocky outcrops and wetlands. Both rare and ancient plants are found along the shore. Great blue herons, belted kingfishers, Canada geese, red-tail hawks and eagles are commonly seen while paddling. Occasionally, deer, beaver and muskrats present themselves. Flat-water upriver of the dam is especially well-suited for both the beginner paddler and anyone interested in nature. Parents paddling with children find the experience particularly gratifying. Fee: $25 per person with the canoe/kayak provided, $20 per person with your own boat. Register for this trip with the Haw River Canoe & Kayak Company either online at or by calling 336-260-6465.

Contact Gretchen Smith about this series.
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