Archived Story

I’m inviting YOU to attend The Pamlico Opry!

Published 5:28pm Tuesday, July 8, 2014


The Beaufort County Traditional Music Association (BCTMA) and the Beaufort County Arts Council (BCAC) will cooperatively present a series of traditional music concerts each 2nd and 4th Saturday nights in July, August and September at the Turnage Theater.

The concert series called “The Pamlico Opry” celebrates the fifth anniversary of a concert series of the same name presented by the BCTMA and the Turnage Theater during the summer of 2009. That first Pamlico Opry represented an ambitious project by the newly formed BCTMA as a means to introduce its vision of encouraging and supporting the enjoyment of traditional music in Beaufort County. The seven performances presented in the summer of 2009 attracted a broad variety of folks from throughout Beaufort County and the surrounding region to the newly renovated Turnage Theater.

“Culture and agriculture” sat shoulder-to-shoulder as patrons of the arts from Washington joined

mechanics from Belhaven and farmers from Aurora to hear a variety of music performed by local and regional traditional performers.

The BCTMA is now in its sixth year of encouraging our increasingly diverse community to bond

together by joyfully making and sharing music with each other. The BCTMA thrives in its mission as a “grassroots” performing arts entity thanks to the active involvement and support of its business and individual sponsors, over 150 members, the performers that share the music, and the many patrons that attend jams and performances presented by the BCTMA at the Union Alley Coffeehouse and elsewhere in Beaufort County.

The BCTMA owes its existence as a community performing arts entity to the direct involvement and guidance of the BCAC and Joey Toler. Joey embraced the initial idea for a traditional music

association in Beaufort County and offered the BCAC as its incubator. Within a year of the

presentation of the idea that would eventually become the BCTMA, Joey led the effort to identify

traditional musicians in the community, organize weekly “jams” at the Saturday farmer’s market,

planned and presented a music festival (now an annual event known as the BoCO Music Festival), and facilitated the presentation of the first “Pamlico Opry.”

Now, five years hence, thanks to the courageous efforts of Joey Toler and the BCAC leadership – and their faith in the support of our community, the Turnage Theater lives again. Since moving into its new home six months ago, the BCAC has focused on developing the role of the Turnage facility to nurture and serve the broad landscape of visual and performing arts for all the people of Beaufort County and beyond. Drawings, paintings and sculpture created by our community’s school children have been exhibited in the gallery and celebrated with equal enthusiasm as those created by the many award-winning professional artists who make Washington their home. In the theater: poetry readings, the BoCO Music Festival, Star Search, Children’s Theater Camp and a variety of other events have “set the stage” for coming attractions in our community’s theater.

I’d like to invite and encourage all the folks in Beaufort County and beyond to plan now to attend The Pamlico Opry this summer. You are our community and only your involvement and support will assure that the BCAC at the Turnage Theater will continue to be able to provide a creative place where all of us can experience the beauty of art and participate in the joy of music. I hope to see YOU there.

We’ll have fun!

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