Friday, February 10, 2006

Cistern is Juggled while Roy Parsons Takes Flight

John Golden test drives Marcy and Lou's new picking porch.

On Ocracoke Island
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Marcy and Lou of Coyote Host House Opening (And Surprise Birthday Party)

Last Saturday, Marcy Brenner and Lou Castro treated the Ocracoke Community to a tour of their new-old house that they have been renovating for a year and a half now. Although not yet completed, the couple are inching closer to a move-in date with the help of Tom Pahl, and Martin and Clifton Garrish. Everyone enjoyed seeing the personal design touches that grace the project from the custom cabinetry by Len Skinner to the beautiful sea glass tile and the fabulous picking porch. Also of special note on Saturday was a surprise birthday party for Lou Castro held at the Ocracoke Community Center. Lou was officially hired to play for the event (for a “fella from Hatteras”) via Martin Garrish and the Rockers. It took about half the evening before Lou stopped waiting for the off-islander to arrive. Marcy hired the Flying Melon to cater their delicacies to both of the day’s events. Marcy and Lous even had some surprise visits from off-island Ocrafolk stars, John Golden and Gerald Hampton.

The Ocracoke Preservation Society Receives a New Addition

Photo by Dale Mutro

On Friday, February 3, a large construction crane successfully deposited a historical circular cistern onto its final resting place next to the Ocracoke Preservation Museum near Ocracoke Harbor. Workers lifted the historic container from its home at the Milan and Nina Williams house and under the direction of island resident Fred Garst transported the brick artifact to the Museum where it was installed. Mr. Garst conceived of and funded the project, successfully preserving one of the last remaining historical circular cisterns on Ocracoke Island. Thanks so much to Fred for his vision and significant investment, contributing to the preservation of Ocracoke’s culture!

Photo by Dale Mutro

Closing in on Ocracoke Contra Dance Weekend (Feb 24-26)

Get ready for a heart thumping weekend of contra dancing on Ocracoke Island! Here are the final details. All events are free and open to the public, so we hope visitors from “Off” will come to the island for the fun. Also note the addition of an Organic Farming Workshop at Deepwater Theater on Sunday by Ocrafolk friends and Virginia Beach organic farmers Kathleen Fogarty and John Wilson.

Friday, February 24
7:00 - 9:30 pm -- Family Contra Dance
Lots of teaching and easy dances, suitable for people who have never danced before. Children should know left from right, be comfortable letting go of parents and interacting with strangers, and be able to listen to and follow a short series of instructions. Refreshments provided by the Ocracoke Family Resource Program.

Saturday, February 25
10:00 am - 12:00 pm Dance Workshop
Teaching a few more complex contra moves, plenty of dances, and a session of basic waltz instruction. Geared towards teens and adults.

2:00 - 3:30 pm Contra musicians workshop
David DiGuiseppie and Pete Campbell will help musicians hone their dance
accompaniment skills.

7:00 - 10:00 pm Chillchaser Contra Dance Ball

Contra calling and instruction by Joan Kelly of Memphis, TN.

Weekend music provided by David DiGiuseppe and Pete Campbell.

Sunday, February 26
1:00 - 5:00 pm Organic Farming Workshop at Deepwater Theater
At Deepwater Theater on Ocracoke’s School Road come explore films and discussion about Agriculture with Organic Farmer John Wilson from New Earth Farm in Virginia Beach. He will discuss the need to preserve local family farms, Sustainable Agriculture and some of the pitfalls of factory farming.

Contra dance is a lively and distinctively American form of folk dancing, rooted in English Country Dancing. The dance is social in nature, vigorous and joyful. Partners dance together, repeating a series of moves with every other couple in line down the hall. There is no specific footwork to learn, and all the moves are taught, walked through, and prompted by the caller during the dance. Live music adds to the zest. Contra dance groups meet regularly all over the United States.

To download a printable version of the poster visit See ya there!

Off Ocracoke Island
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Fiddler Dave appears on WUNC’s Radio Public Radio Releases Best of Back Porch Volume 8

Many of you North Carolina Public Radio Fans listen to “Back Porch Music” every weekend on WUNC out of Chapel Hill. The show is the longest running locally produced radio show on WUNC. The station has just released the “Best of Back Porch Music Volume 8: Ballads, Blues, and Breakdowns,” a wonderful collection of tunes that includes Fiddler Dave’s version of “Whisky For Breakfast” from his instrumental album “Cecil Train Heads West.”
Volume 8 includes:

Sam Bush – Puppies ‘N Knapsacks
Guy Davis – Grandma is Dancing
Etta Baker & Cora Phillips – John Henry
Caitlin Cary & Thad Cockrell – Two Different Things
The Kathy Kallick Band – Who’s Goin’ Down to Town
Kate Campbell – New South
Suzzy & Maggie Roche – Couldn’t Hear Nobody Pray
Dana & Susan Robinson – The Cuckoo
Ranarim – The King’s Daughters
Redbird – Moonshiner
Troublesome Creek String Band – Walk Along John to Kansas
Fiddler Dave – Whisky For Breakfast
Darrell Scott – The Ballad of Martha White
Hobart Smith – Heaven’s Airplane
Kukuruza – Stradaniya

Copies of the Cd are available by making a donation of $120 or more to WUNC’s fund drive. You can listen to samples off Volume 8 and find out more about supporting the Public Radio Station at

A Royal Entourage To Accompany Roy Parson to the Grand Ole Opry

Ocracoke musician, model boat builder, and all-around treasure Roy Parsons is going to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN! On February 23, Gary, Kitty and Katy of Molasses Creek, Lou and Marcy of Coyote, and Sundae Horn and daughter Caroline will accompany the Ocrafolk star on the trip of a lifetime to visit to see Cherryholmes, Riders In The Sky, Porter Wagoner, and Joe Diffie among others at Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN. The Ocracokers fly out of Norfolk on Thursday, February 23, and return on Saturday (hopefully in time to catch some contra dancing at the Ocracoke School).

This will be the first time Roy (83) has flown in a large commercial airplane, so the trip should be entertaining for him and everyone near him on the voyage. Mr. Parson’s previous flight experience includes a trip from Hatteras beach to Ocracoke beach. For that historic event, Roy had to hop out of the plane while it was still rolling so that the puddle jumper (wave jumper) could take off of the hard sand before the tide came rolling back up.


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