Friday, June 30, 2017

July - August 2017

A piece of artwork from nature in the May days outside the community center at the foot of the telephone pole--a lovely patch of irises!

The ECHO is published bi-monthly throughout the year by the Upper Hickory Nut Gorge Community Club. You can access the online blog at: or pick up a paper copy at the Gerton Post Office. News is  welcome; pictures, too. Please send to editor Margaret Whitt at Photographers this issue: Margaret Whitt, Sylvia Sane, Barbara Bellamy

Officers for 2016-2017: President Margaret Whitt; Vice President Jim Earnhardt; Winter Secretary Susie Bancer; Summer Secretary Lana Roberts; Treasurer Sylvia Sane; Immediate Past President Jim Sane. Board Members: Lynn Morehead, Jean Bradley, Patty Tanner, Mac McAdams

Calendar of Events

July 2, Sunday, 2 p.m. - Annual Homeowners Meeting for Chestnut Hills--at the Pavilion.

July 3, Monday - 8-11 p.m. Lake Lure Fireworks (see below)

July 4, Tuesday - 6:30 p.m. Cookout with burgers and dogs (provided). Bring Sides. Bingo to follow (with prizes) and FIREWORKS to follow Bingo--all at the UHNGCC.

July 18, Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. Community Covered Dish. Program: a moment from the summer play, "Dinner at Aunt Katherine's"

July 28 and 29 - Friday and Saturday, SUMMER PLAY: " Dinner at Aunt Katherine's" Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Play starts at 8 p.m. Tickets at the door: $15 per person. Suitable for all ages.

August 15, Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. Community Covered Dish. Program: TBD

September 2, Saturday - GERTONFEST IX - all day

President's Note

I have always felt that when the 4th of July arrives, we are halfway through the summer! I know this isn't calendar-true, but it always seemed that way to me during the school years of my life. And here we are coming right up on America's birthday. Last year we had over a hundred gather in the center to celebrate and be together. I do look forward to the same celebration this year. Maybe we are at our best in these small town gatherings -- people who know each other, breaking bread together, playing games, eating special food groups--burgers and dogs and watermelon--and then lighting up the sky and thinking: America, it is a good place to live.

Thanks go out to Jim Sane, who has been faithful in following through with our FIREWISE certification. What good news that our community is being an example to other neighborhoods in the gorge. And another thank you to those who brought food for the food bank in June. We delivered 130 pounds this trip; this is a record for us in one-time contributions, but the food bank is ALWAYS in need of supplies--and especially in the summer, it seems, when kids are home from school. Let's all try to make 100 pounds a regular occurrence, instead of a special one. Soon we will be asking for school supplies--to make it easier on families as kids go back to school in the fall. For those of us who no longer have young kids of our own, there is a real pleasure in purchasing new paper, glue, pencils, erasers, crayons, etc. 

We welcome the play back this year--thanks to Helen Brown, who wrote it and Ruth Ann Nappi, who will direct it. Remember to invite your out-of-town friends to come spend the weekend with you and bring them to the play -- July 28 and 29. It is always held the last weekend of July.

GertonFest IX will be held on Saturday, September 2, during Labor Day weekend. Make plans now to spend some of the day with us.

Thanks as well to Jim Sane for making sure that our newly purchased American-made flags have been hung. They will wave daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day. And thanks to Stan Mobley for contributing to the flag purchase.

Looking forward to seeing you soon at a community activity.

Margaret Whitt


A Note from Jim Sane

Just a reminder that our annual July 4th celebration is Tuesday.  Event times are:

6:30 PM:  Grilled Hamburgers/Hot dogs ready to serve at 6:30 pm.  Club is providing hamburgers and hot dogs with all the trimmings.  Request those attending bring side items (e.g. chips, potato salad, bbq beans, watermelon, etc) and desserts.  Club will provide tea and lemonade.

7:30 pm:  BINGO !!!  Prizes will be awarded to winners. 

8:45 pm:  FIREWORKS !!!  The awesome fireworks display will begin.

Most patriotic outfit/costume award.  A special prize will be awarded to the winner of this competition.  The prize is a $25.00 gift card to Outback Steakhouse.  This competition is open to all ages.

Judging will take place prior to moving outside for fireworks.  Four judges will be chosen at random by Margaret Whitt.


Hickory Creek Players to Present

 "Dinner at Aunt Katherine's"

Gerton's annual summer play,  the world premiere of "Dinner at Aunt Katherine's," will be performed on the last weekend of July. Save Friday and Saturday, July 28 and 29, and bring friends and family to the Upper Hickory Nut Gorge Community Center in Gerton for a fun evening. Play begins at 8 p.m. and doors open at 7:30. Tickets are $15 and may be purchased at the door.

Aunt Katherine is celebrating her 90th birthday and hosting a party for her nieces and nephews. Because of certain not-to-be-disclosed-now events that happen, the family soon finds themselves searching everywhere for Aunt Katherine's will and her money. As it turns out, everybody needs money, and there is also a killer in search of a nephew who has gambling debts.  As with all of local playwright Helen Brown's delightful romps on the stage, you can be sure there will be plenty of laughs.

The Hickory Creek Players, this year composed of Pam Lewis, Don Lewis, Debbie Hill, Freddie Ann Nappi, J.D. Nappi, and Julie Delich, are all familiar actors to those who are regulars at this Gerton Summer Highlight. Ruth Ann Nappi will direct.

May Program

Bryan Tomes (pictured below), Founding Partner and Admissions and Academic Director of Equinox Residential Treatment Center, our neighbor on Middlefork Road, was the speaker. At present, Equinox has ten boys, ages 14 to 18, living on site. At full capacity, Equinox will house 48 male teens. The students have learning and emotional anxiety and depression caused by trauma. The staff, at present, is 18; at full capacity the staff will be close to 50, which includes therapists, teachers, psychiatrist, cook, nurse, and direct care staff. A bed check is held every 30 minutes. If a resident awakes in the night, there is always an adult member of the care staff to be present to that resident. Boys will live in four groups of 12, suggesting a family unit. At present, the boys come from mostly the Southeast and up the Eastern seaboard. The website with a youtube of the campus can be found at

The end goal of Equinox is to return the boys to their homes with enough skills to handle life more positively. 

Helpful Telephone Numbers:

If you have some old furniture to give away: The Salvation Army will come with a truck; the Henderson County number is 693-4181. Habitat for Humanity in Henderson County is 696-9524.

Event Invitation
Fireworks over Lake Lure
Family friendly event featuring Ice Cream, Kettle Corn, Sno Cones, Hot Dogs and Hamburgers.  Fireworks over Lake Lure sponsored by the Town of Lake Lure, Chimney Rock Village and The Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge.  Food Vendors will be located in Morse Park and across the street from the Beach at 1 pm  until dark.

Date:July 3, 2017
Time:08:00 PM - 11:00 PM EDT
Date/Time Details:1 pm Vendor's open in Morse Park and across the street from Beach
8 pm Lake Lure Beach Gates open
Dusk Fireworks begin
Fees/Admission:General Admission is Free

Preferred Seating available on the beach deck beginning at 8:00. Deck seating is $15 per person limited to 50 people.  Prime viewing from elevated deck adjacent to beach.  Includes access to private restrooms with bottled water and soft drinks available.
Advance registration recommended.   Beach gates open at 8pm where wrist bands will be issued.

Event Invitation
We're opening up our shores again to welcome friends, neighbors and visitors to The Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge's Lake Lurau!  Nestled in the our picturesque mountain backdrop, the Lake Lure Beach offers the perfect venue for this signature annual community event, which features an expansive Hawaiian buffet with slow- roast pulled pork, chicken and baked fish. The event kicks off the The Pig Parade. There will be entertainment by The Big Kahuna Hawaiian DJ and the Spirit of Polynesia Dance Troupe performing and teaching traditional Hawaiian hula dancing.  Along with the cash bar, the Lurau offers plenty of fun Hawaiian activities for the kids and young at heart.
Date:July 15, 2017
Time:06:00 PM - 10:00 PM EDT
Location:Lake Lure Beach across the street from the 1927 Lake Lure Inn & Spa
Fees/Admission:Pre-Event: $30 adults and teens; $10 children 12 and under
At the Door: $35 adults and teens; $15 children 12 and under


 From Jim Sane

The application packet has been mailed.  I anticipate we'll be receiving acknowledgement that Gerton is a Recognized Firewise Community in the near future.  We'll receive a plaque to display identifying Gerton as a Firewise Community.  One note of interest is that Gerton will be the first non-gated community to become Firewise in North Carolina.  I was also informed that Chimney Rock is in the process of becoming a Firewise Community.  Chimney Rock heard about Gerton and decided they like the program also.

The application includes a Wildland - Urban Interface Action Plan.  The plan has to list three doable projects.  One of our projects is to get homeowners to display 911 reflective signage displaying their house number.  I had seven individuals order their signage at the 20 June club meeting. Firefighters and Medical Responders love this project.  It's so much easier to find your home if we can see your house number, especially at night.

Contact me (Jim Sane) at or 828-243-8448 if you are interested in the signage.  The signage is blue with white reflective numbers.  You'll be seeing them displayed soon.  Actually, I have three of them displayed on my drive at 74-A.

June Program

With 48 in attendance at our June 20 meeting, Jennifer Adams, who is the AmeriCorps Habitat Restoration Associate at Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy and works with the Weed Action Coalition of Hickory Nut Gorge, brought some fresh cuttings of some examples of non-native invasives to pass around. This group offers a free inventory of your non-natives and will write a management plan and also offer help with removal. If you are interested in pursuing this topic on a more personal action plan, you can call Jen at 828-697-5777, ext. 216, for further information. 

Thanks to Gayle Morris for hosting and providing the beach theme here in the mountains! Also, we broke a record with food collected for the Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach food bank. We delivered 130 pounds this month. Scholarships were awarded during our new Community Conversation part of the program.
2017 winners of the UHNGCC College Scholarship: Jacob Lyda and Freddie Ann Nappi. Jim Earnhardt (center) presents the awards at the June Meeting. In the spring, our club voted to increase the amount from $300 to $500--and we had two winners. Jacob's money will go to Blue Ridge Community College, where he continues his studies in automotive service technology. Freddie Ann's award will go to Everglades University, where she will pursue a course of studies in alternative medicine with plans for one day opening her own clinic. For years both of these young people have contributed to making our community better. Jacob helps faithfully on the breakdown of our Sale on the Trail as what did not move for us is taken to another non-profit yard sale in hopes of the items moving in that arena. Jacob also helps in the kitchen during our community breakfasts. He has grown up in the area. Freddie Ann is mostly known for her large acting talent in our annual summer plays. She often is flawless in delivery and impact, following in a long line of Brown-Nappi talent! Freddie Ann, too, has grown up in the community.

We are delighted to be able to support two deserving young people this year.

Neighborhood News

Billy and Linda Gaines (pictured below) got married on May 10, 2017. They make their way into the May dinner for the first time as a newly-wed couple. We hope they will join us often from their home in Charleston.

Christian Bellamy celebrated his high school graduation with family and friends at the UHNGCC on June 3. Below he stands with his family, Dad Tom, Mom Barbara, and Sister Savannah.

Doug and Margaret Colwell at their 60th wedding anniversary at the UHNGCC, a surprise party hosted by their daughters, Michelle Perry and Leslie Leahy, on June 17.

A Thank You Note from Addie Grindle:

Adelaide C. Grindle, Agriculture/Equine Business Management and Veterinary Medicine. 

"I am proud to announce that I completed my freshman year at Isothermal on the Dean’s List. I would like to thank everyone for their love and support while I follow my dreams and continue my education in Agriculture/Equine Business Management and Veterinary Medicine.  A special thank you for financial support to Gerton Community Scholarship Foundation, Community Foundation of Hendersonville, Robert and Vivian Edwards Scholarship Foundation; and, my family."