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CHAUTAUQUA 2014: Rising to the Occasion

June 16-19 at Warren Wilson College
Sponsored by Buncombe County Friends of the Library

Chautauqua 2014, Rising to the Occasion, will be held June 16-19 in the Morris Pavilion at Warren Wilson College in Swannanoa.

This year’s Chautauqua will feature four ordinary people who step out of obscurity to rise to the occasion. Experience imagination, courage and determination at the 2014 Chautauqua with Clara Barton, Robert Smalls, Harry S. Truman and Patrick Henry.

Monday, June 16
Clara Barton – A teacher, a nurse, a reformer and one of the most outstanding women of her time. Her work in the Civil War had earned her the designation “Angel of the Battlefield.” In 1881 she founded the American Red Cross and was known to say that she would work for nothing, but when paid, would accept no less pay than any man.

Tuesday, June 17
Robert Smalls - Born a slave, Smalls was a crewman on an armed Confederate ship in Charleston harbor in 1862. In a daring dash for freedom, Smalls and his crew guided their vessel past the Confederate harbor defenses to the Union Navy. Following the Civil War, Smalls served five terms in the US House of Representatives representing South Carolina. Small’s courageous escape made him an instant American hero, and it set the course for his life as a leader for freedom.

Wednesday, June 18
Harry S. Truman – Truman became President in a critical passage in American history.  Guided by his love of history, Truman rose to the occasion with the founding of the United Nations, the containment of Soviet expansionism, the rebuilding of Europe and the recognition of the state of Israel. Known for speaking his mind, Truman once observed, "Being a president is like riding a tiger. You have to keep on riding or be swallowed."

Thursday, June 19
Patrick Henry - No member of the Founding Generation is more firmly embedded in the popular imagination as “revolutionary” than the great Virginia orator Patrick Henry. With his ringing declaration of defiance to the British Crown in 1775 —“I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me Liberty or give me death” — Patrick Henry rose to every occasion with passion, action and a memorable quote.

Each evening at Chautauqua, a scholar dressed in costume will bring the character to life through a first person monologue.  The audience will then have a chance to question the character, delving more deeply into the issues that have been raised.  Finally, the scholar will step out of character to discuss the subject and answer questions from a critical, modern perspective. 

Please plan to join us at our new location in Morris Pavilion at Warren Wilson College. A musical program will begin at 7pm followed by the featured program at 7:30pm.

There is a suggested donation of $4 per night or $12 for the four-night series.  Chautauqua is sponsored by the Friends of Buncombe County Libraries. For more information contact the library at 250-4700 or visit

Join us in our exciting new location for food, live music and history that won’t stay in a book!

Full Chautauqua Schedule with Performers

Monday, June 16 at 7pm
Musical Guest:  Doghouse Band
Clara Barton (portrayed by Pat Jordan)

Tuesday, June 17 at 7pm
Musical Guest: Carey Fridley
Robert Smalls (portrayed by Donald Sweeper)

Wednesday, June 18 at 7pm
Musical Guest: Travis & Trevor Stuart
Harry S. Truman (portrayed by George Frein)

Thursday, June 19 at 7pm
The Magills
Patrick Henry (portrayed by Ken Johnson)

There will be refreshments including Chow Time Pizza for sale each evening. All proceeds from this event benefit the Friends of Buncombe County Libraries. Thank you for your support.