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Tuesday Evening Lectures at the Banner Elk Book Exchange

Arts and Culture
Date: Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Venue: Banner Elk Book Exchange

Tuesday Evening Lectures at 7:00pm

June 13:  Jimmy Guignard  A native North Carolinian with family roots in Banner Elk, Dr. Guignard is the author of Pedaling the Sacrifice Zone:Teaching, Writing and Living above the Marcellus Shale.  This book explores his experiences watching the rural Pennsylvania area he and his family settled in turn into an industrial sacrifice zone during the Marcellus shale drilling boom.  He will discuss fracking, its impact on the environment and how this book came to be.  (This book will be available for purchase)

June 27:  Ray Russell of fame will be speaking about his running of the entire length of the Blue Ridge Parkway last May as documented on  Dr. Russell is an entertaining storyteller and will give us details on the run, the challenge and joy, as well as the fundraising efforts for this beautiful and important “highway” in the mountain area we love.  We may even get him to discuss his interesting weather forecasting career which began as a hobby.

July 11:  Karl Campbell   “Who is a Real American?  The History and Politics of Immigration”.    Dr. Campbell will discuss our present immigration debate from a historical perspective by reviewing the many ways Americans have thought about, and fought over, immigration and national identity in U.S. and North Carolina history. He is a professor of history at Appalachian State University and has lived in the High Country for over 25 years.  Karl has also written a well-received book on the life and legacy of Sam Ervin, Senator Sam Ervin, Last of the Founding Fathers.  This will be an interesting and educational evening for all.

July 25:  Randy Johnson, author of Grandfather Mountain: The History and Guide to an Appalachian Icon will speak about his 40-year love affair with this beloved mountain.  Johnson started Grandfather Mountain’s modern trail program in the 1970’s and has been writing and researching the mountain and the high country ever since.  “I set out to truly honor not only Grandfather Mountain, but also the heritage and history of the people of Avery and Watauga counties.”  (This book will be available for purchase)

August 1:  Jerry Turbyfill, a local expert will speak on “Revisiting ETWNC Railroad” ( the original Tweetsie Railroad).  Jerry has been Vice President of the East Tennesee and West North Carolina Railroad Historical Society for the past eight years and was instrumental in the restoration of the Linville Depot.  An Avery County native, Jerry will share history and human interest stories about the early days of railroading in the North Carolina mountains. Come prepared to be entertained and informed!  

 August 22:  Joe H. Perry, Charlie B. VonCanon, and Jean Webb will join a panel discussion on “Banner Elk in Days Gone By”.  Joe H. and Charlie B. grew up in Banner Elk and were schoolmates all through elementary and high school.  Jean is a well-recognized “fount’ of information about the history of this area.  Bring your questions and be ready to hear lots of stories from the good ole days.

September 12:  Michael Vines, professor of religion at Lees-McRae College will be speaking. Dr. Vines will provide a thought provoking evening with his lecture "An Introduction to Islam". He will discus the life of the prophet Muhammad and provide an overview of basic Islamic beliefs and practices. Such a relevant topic as this is sure to spark a great deal of discussion!




All Dates

  • Tuesday, September 12, 2017
  • Tuesday, August 22, 2017
  • Tuesday, August 01, 2017
  • Tuesday, July 25, 2017
  • Tuesday, July 11, 2017
  • Tuesday, June 27, 2017
  • Tuesday, June 13, 2017

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Banner Elk, NC is a great place to make your vacation destination!  The town offers all varieties of lodging to suit every need and budget, great locally owned restaurants, and fun activities year round. Whether you are looking for a fun outdoor adventure with friends, a romantic getaway, or an unforgettable family vacation you will find it in Banner Elk!  Our Chamber prides itself in providing information to our visitors and is always available to help you find the information you need.  Call 828-898-8395 or email us at