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LOCAL BRIEFS: Blue Ridge Brass, book release in Flat Rock, youth club collecting toys

Blue Ridge Brass performs Sunday

The Blue Ridge Symphonic Brass, conducted by Jamie Hafner, opens its 2022-23 Concert Series with a free performance at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, at Trinity Presbyterian Church, 900 Blythe St.
The performance will feature brilliant works for brass, spanning styles from Renaissance to pop to contemporary, and will include one of the group’s signature antiphonal brass choir selections. In addition, organist Stephen Klein will be featured playing harpsichord on Respighi’s Ancient Airs and Dances. This concert is free and open to the public, with donations accepted, and is sponsored by Thomas L. Sauter.

The program will also include Fanfare from “La Peri” by French composer Paul Dukas; Three Brass Cats by American composer Chris Hazell, a jazzy musical tribute to the composer’s rascally felines; and Loving Shepherd of Thy Sheep by British composer John Rutter.

The Blue Ridge Symphonic Brass, featuring instruments found in a symphony orchestra’s brass section, is dedicated to bringing the symphonic brass repertoire to music patrons in our communities, often in collaboration with local soloists or musical groups. The BRSB features outstanding musicians from the Brevard, Hendersonville, Asheville and Greenville, S.C., areas. Many perform or have performed with professional orchestras and bands or teach at universities and schools in the region. The ensemble’s instrumentation includes trumpets, horns, euphoniums, trombones, tubas and percussion. Conductor Jamie Hafner is a well-known musical leader, having served as director of bands at Brevard College and currently the conductor of the Brevard Community Band. He is director emeritus of bands at the University of Toledo and director emeritus of education at Brevard Music Center.

Tim Jones releases third poetry book Saturday

 “Down Where the Soul Is,” a third book of poems by Tim Jones, will be available for sale at a book release party at 3 p.m. Saturday at The Gallery at Flat Rock, 2702-A Greenville Highway.
The launch event will include Jones reading from his new book and discussing the inspiration behind his finely observed, soulful and moving poems. Aside from being a published poet, Tim serves on the leadership team at the Hendersonville Rescue Mission and is a clergy member at St. James Episcopal Church. He is also a noted nature photographer.
Many of the poems in “Down Where the Soul Is” are influenced by Tim’s work at the Rescue Mission and draw on Tim’s deep love for nature and his life of service in Christian ministry. He says he aims to “take readers on a poetic pilgrimage of hope and healing.” This new book follows the publication of “I Pray You” in 2021 and “Blue Mountain Poems” in 2020.
In addition to copies of “Down Where the Soul Is,” the book’s cover photo, “Grace of Morning Dew,” is also available to purchase from the gallery as a print on canvas. For those who would like to purchase a copy of Jones’s previous book of poems, preorders will be taken for a second printing. An RSVP ( is requested for this free event.

Boys & Girls Club collecting toys

The Boys & Girls Club of Henderson County is collecting new, unwrapped toys for club members, ages 6-11, through Dec. 14. All toys will be given to children through the club’s annual Santa’s Workshop holiday gifting program.

So far this year the Club has served over 1,000 youth, 91 percent of whom qualify for free or reduced lunch. With this, the gifts given to members at Santa’s Workshop are especially treasured.

However, it can’t happen without the help of the local community. “We work constantly with partner agencies to make sure that children in need have resources for adequate food and clothing, but because toys are not viewed as a necessity, they often become an afterthought,” said Club staff member Bonnie Gibson. “Individuals and businesses in our community make the holidays happen at our club every year, and we are so grateful for their support.”

To donate a new, unwrapped toy or make a monetary donation to the Boys & Girls Club of Henderson County, please call 828-693-9444 or bring your donation to 1304 Ashe Street. The deadline for toy donations is Wednesday, Dec. 14.