Cumberland County Golf Championship adds Junior Division

11 Arianna Mclawhorn at gates Four Country ClubWhen the 53rd annual Cumberland County Golf Championship tees off in October, it will have a new look.

A youth division for players in middle and high school has been added for the tournament at Gates Four Golf & Country Club.

“The reason we created it is to grow and develop the champions of tomorrow,” said tournament director Bill Bowman.
“I’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback. Everyone thinks it’s a great idea and they have been very supportive.”

There will be divisions for boys and girls in age groups of 12 to 14 (middle school) and 15 to 18 (high school). The CCGC will be held Oct. 15-17 at Gates Four. The youths will play the final two days for a 36-hole event. The entry fee is $145 which includes the Champions Reception & Pairing Party, a practice round, range balls, food and on-course beverages and the CCGC Winners Reception.

Billy West, an 8-time champion of the CCGC, first played in the tournament when he turned 16 and became eligible.

“I am very excited to see the CCGC add a junior division,” he said, “When I was a junior golfer growing up in Cumberland County, I could not wait to turn 16 so I could compete in the CCGC. I admired and looked up to local golfers such as Gary Robinson Gene Howell, Mike Williford, Gary Moore and David Hinkamp. I dreamed of one day having my name on the CCGC trophy.”

Bowman and West hope the addition of a Junior Division will develop players for the main CCGC tournament in the future.

“I think the addition of a Junior Division will not only help grow junior golf in our area but also will help sustain the adult divisions for years to come,” West said.
“We have many great junior players right now in Cumberland County who are some of the best players in the state and country in their age divisions. I hope they will compete in the CCGC Junior Division.”

Bowman added “the talent is out there. We just need to groom it. I think the kids are going to have a good time. I think they can learn a lot by watching some of the veteran players we have signed up.”

Anthony Carstarphen, the golf coach at South View High School and a teaching pro at Gates Four, is helping Bowman get the project off the ground. He believes interest in the Junior Division will be high.

“I had kids trying to sign up before the site was even up,” he said. “So, we definitely have got the interest.”

There are players in the county to tap into. Gates Four, Cypress Lakes, King’s Grant and Highland Country Club all have junior golf programs — not to mention the many high school golf teams in the county.

“It’s going to give us players for the future,” Carstarphen said. “That’s what will allow this tournament to keep going.”

Kevin Lavertu, the general manager at Gates Four, said he had discussed with Bowman about adding a junior division for a few years.

“We thought we would take a shot at it,” Lavertu said.

Bowman said he is limiting the Junior Division field to 30 players this year.

“We have to be able to manage the field and get our hands around it,” Lavertu said. “We host U.S. Kids Golf here two times a year and we get 80 to 100 players. If it gets to that point, maybe we need to have a Cumberland County junior tournament that would take place in the summer when the kids are out of school.”

The 53-year-old main CCGC tournament has struggled in recent years since losing its major sponsor. Bowman, the publisher of Up & Coming Weekly community newspaper, took up the mantle in 2017 and has led the effort trying to rebuild the event. With the support and encouragement of businesses like the Richardson Law Firm, Healy Wholesale, Fastsigns and dozens of other local businesses who realize how important it is to maintain this golfing tradition in Cumberland County for future generations.

“We want to start the kids young in tournament play and hopefully build the county tournament back up,” Lavertu said. “It used to be 200-plus people playing multiple golf courses.”

Junior players who are at least 16 years old can still choose to play in the main tournament instead of the Junior Division. Spencer Oxendine won the CCGC in 2018 when he was a senior at Jack Britt High School and Toni Blackwell won the women’s division in 2019 when she was a senior at Cape Fear.

“This is kind of a test in the water and see what the interest level is,” Lavertu said. “We’ll evaluate it and assess it and see what makes sense moving forward.”

If junior players need any encouragement to sign up, they can listen to West.

“For me, there has been no greater honor in my golf career than winning my county’s golf championship,” he said. “I hope our local junior players will feel the same way about the CCGC. It is a special tournament and always has been the most important to me from the age of 16 to present.”

Junior players must reside in Cumberland County and must sign up by Oct. 10 at 5 p.m. Players can register online at cumberlandcountygolfclassic.com or by returning an application to Kevin Lavertu at Gates Four Country Club. Application forms are available at all local golf courses. Players who register by Sept. 30 will receive a free round for a foursome at Gates Four, Baywood, Stryker and King’s Grant.

James Sherrill local businessman and owner of sweetFrog premium frozen yogurt thinks this a great opportunity for developing young athletes, and has signed on to be the Title Sponsor for the CCGC Junior Division.

Local businesses and organizations can support the Junior Division by sponsoring players. All sponsors are invited to the champion’s reception and pairings party and the awards and trophy presentations. They also will have their name and logo on youth commemorative shirts and promotional materials.

To sponsor a child or for more information, contact Bill Bowman at 910-391-3859 or email bbowman@upandcomingweekly.com.

Pictured above: Arianna Mclawhorn prepares to tee off on Hole #1 at Gates Four.

Community Concerts are back for 86th season

13 USE in AD 014RS Live 08 8x12cAfter the 2020 COVID hiatus, venues around Fayetteville and Cumberland County have begun to rebound and the 2021 season of music and entertainment is off to a promising start.

Last week, The Isley Brothers kicked off the 86th season of Community Concerts. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame performers delivered a stellar show and set the tone for the rest of the season.

“The goal of the Community Concerts program is to bring quality entertainment to the more than 400,000 residents of Cumberland County and neighboring counties of the Cape Fear Region,” said Bill Kirby Jr., the president of Community Concerts of Fayetteville.

Jim Grafstrom, the general manager of the Crown Complex, calls the Community Concerts line-up a “great season.”

Next up is Rick Springfield on Oct. 2 at the Crown Theatre.

As a Grammy Award-winning songwriter, musician, actor and best-selling author, Springfield is a man of many talents. For many, he is the image of the 1980s rockstar. He has sold 25 million albums and scored 17 U.S. Top 40 hits including “Jessie’s Girl,” “Don’t Talk to Strangers,” “An Affair of the Heart,” "I've Done Everything for You,” “Love Somebody,” and “Human Touch.”

As an actor, Springfield has an impressive list of credits. Although he had several guest spots on American TV in the 1970s, Springfield’s acting career gained momentum in 1981 when he became Dr. Noah Drake on daytime television’s “General Hospital,” a role he has revisited over the years, much to the delight of fans of the show. More recently, his credits include starring opposite Meryl Streep in “Ricki and the Flash,” a performance as Dr. Pitlor in the HBO drama “True Detective,” a portrayal of Lucifer on the CW hit “Supernatural” and as Pastor Charles on “American Horror Story.”

As if making music and performing for more than five decades isn’t enough, Springfield is also a New York Times best-selling author, and collaborates with his friend and fellow rocker Sammy Hagar in the rum business with Beach Bar Rum.
Springfield is sure to deliver a high-energy show. The show starts at 7 p.m. The opening act for the Rick Springfield concert is Fayetteville-based band Rivermist.

“Not every concert has an opening act, but Rivermist is a local group with talented musicians,” Kirby said. “We could not be more pleased that they will be a part of the Rick Springfield concert. It’s an added bonus for the concert.”

Rivermist’s Greg Adair said the band is looking forward to the experience. “It will be our first time playing in the Crown Theatre,” Adair said. “It’s on our bucket list.”

Fans of Rivermist know they do a good job on a few Springfield covers, but “it’s hard to find a local band that doesn’t play ‘Jessie’s Girl,’” Adair said.

“I’ve always been a fan,” he said, adding that he saw Springfield in concert a few years ago in Raleigh.

“We are looking forward to opening for him and his band,” Adair said. “We have eight songs in 35 minutes, we hope to make the whole show better.”

Rivermist includes Adair, Doug Bass, Cliff Bender, Tony Harrison and Allen Pier.

Tickets for Rick Springfield range from $40 to $100 and can be purchased on www.crowncomplexnc.com. Face coverings for staff and guests are required in the Crown Theatre.

After the Rick Springfield show, Community Concerts will welcome Straight No Chaser on Nov. 4. Styx will perform on April 23, 2022. “Jersey Boys” is scheduled for April 28, 2022.

The final show of the season will be the Oak Ridge Boys on May 13, 2022, a show rescheduled from last season.

“The Oak Ridge Boys is the only repeat performance from the previous season, and we are grateful these musicians kept their promise to perform,” said Kirby.

With such a variety of accomplished performers lined up for the 86th season, Kirby said he is pleased and grateful for all those who worked to make the season a reality.

“I have to give credit to Cape Fear Valley Health and City View magazine as our new Master of Ceremonies lead sponsors,” Kirby said. “This 86th season likely would not have come to fruition without support from Mike Nagowski, chief

executive officer of CFVH, and Tony Chavonne, our former city mayor and publisher of City View.”

Kirby also thanked The Arts Council, the Riddle family, and the support of community leaders like Ralph and Linda Huff, Lonnie Player, Dr. Dave Dickerhoff, Dr. Gary Jones and many others.

Kirby said the board of Community Concerts dedicates the 86th season to the late Tony Ragan, the Crown Complex production director, who died in April.

“This difficult season took more than a village,” Kirby said, “This difficult season took a community.”

2021-2022 Season
Community Concerts will welcome Straight No Chaser on Nov. 4. The a cappella group makes music through the captivating sound of nine human voices, with a sense of humor. The group has sold more than 1.6 million albums and has made numerous national TV appearances. The audience can expect to enjoy a pitch perfect night of hits and Christmas favorites from the group that has become an a cappella world-wide sensation.

Styx will perform on April 23, 2022. The American rock band from Chicago became famous for its albums released in the late 1970s and early 1980s. They are best known for melding hard rock guitar balanced with acoustic guitar, synthesizers mixed with acoustic piano, upbeat tracks with power ballads, and incorporating elements of international musical theatre.

The band established itself with a progressive rock sound in the 1970s, and began to incorporate pop rock and soft rock elements in the 1980s. Styx is best known for the hit songs “Lady,” “Come Sail Away,” “Babe,” “The Best of Times,” “Too Much Time on My Hands,” “Mr. Roboto” and “Don’t Let It End.”

Styx has had 16 Top 40 singles in the U.S., eight of which hit the Top 10.

“Jersey Boys” is scheduled for April 28, 2022. The Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical is directed by Des McAnuff. “Jersey Boys” is written by Academy Award-winner Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, with music by Bob Gaudio, lyrics by Bob Crewe and choreography by Sergio Trujillo.

The musical is the behind-the-music story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. They were just four guys from Jersey, until they sang their very first note. They had a sound nobody had ever heard and the radio just couldn’t get enough of them. While their harmonies were perfect on stage, off stage it was a very different story — a story that has made them an international sensation all over again.
The show features all their hits including “Sherry,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Oh What A Night,” “Walk Like A Man,” “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” and “Working My Way Back To You.”

The Oak Ridge Boys will perform on May 13, 2022. The group has one of the most distinctive sounds in the music industry. The four-part harmonies and upbeat songs have created dozens of country hits and a #1 pop smash. The group has earned Grammy, Dove, CMA and ACM awards and garnered a host of other industry and fan accolades.

Their string of hits includes the pop chart-topper “Elvira,” as well as “Bobbie Sue,” “Thank God For Kids,” “American Made,” “I Guess It Never Hurts To Hurt Sometimes,” “Fancy Free,” “Gonna Take A Lot Of River,” and many others.
The group has had more than a dozen national number one singles and more than 30 Top Ten hits. Having sold over 41 million albums, the Oak Ridge Boys were also inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2015, inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2000.

The Oak Ridge Boys have earned 5 Grammy Awards, 2 AMA Awards, 4 ACM Awards, 4 CMA Awards, 11 Dove Awards, 5 Billboard Awards, 8 Cashbox Awards, and many others.

Cumberland County Fair delivers fun for everyone Sept. 3-12

10 familyAs summer winds down and the kids head back to school, many families start thinking about the fall … cooler weather, football games and, of course, the Cumberland County Fair!

The Cumberland County Fair has been a constant in the lives of many families in Cumberland County for several generations. Held at the Crown Coliseum Complex, this year’s theme is “Agriculture, Food and Rides! Oh My!” While many people visit the fair for the rides and the yummy fair food, it’s important to note that the Cumberland County Fair is rooted in the agricultural heritage of Cumberland County.

That being said, one of the big draws to the fair annually, is the agricultural competitions that see kids of all ages vying for Blue Ribbons and accolades. According to organizers of the fair, there will be livestock shows and exhibits every day. If it’s been a while since you were in FFA (Future Farmers of America for those of you not in the know) or FHA (Future Home Makers of America), it’s not too late to pull your old blue corduroy jacket out of the closet or pull out your favorite recipe for pickles of jams and join in the fun.

Of course, the fair is more than that. There are fun events like the interactive petting farm. Some of these animals are cute and cuddly and some are slippery and slimy. If you like to live dangerously, you can also check out the toddler driving school, which, if done correctly, could morph into a demolition derby! If that isn’t something that gets you excited, let’s be honest: Who doesn’t want to see the mayhem created by toddlers driving while hyped up on cotton candy?

If toddlers crashing around isn’t your idea of fun — there is still more. Cumberland County citizens of all ages submit various works of art for the annual arts and crafts show. Beautiful baskets, paintings and pottery are just some of the works of arts you will see on display - and yes, the artist can win a ribbon! If you have a talent you would like to share, it is not too late to enter it into the show.

The Cumberland County Fair is also known for great music, and this year promises to entertain. Music is on tap throughout the fair’s run, and includes a variety of musical genres.

Reflections II band is a Fayetteville-based band that plays a variety of music that leaves their fans asking for more. Playing mostly cover tunes, one of the band’s fans noted, “Great guys … awesome talent, great set list. Top shelf entertainment.” You might want to do what one fan suggested — get on your dancing shoes and boogy on down at the fair.

•The Throwback Collaboration Band plays the best of rhythm and blues, dance and old school music.

•If you are a little bit country, the Steel County Express has something for you. The band plays modern country and some rock and roll.

Rivermist, also a Fayetteville-based band, started its musical journey in 2014. Rivermist is a variety, party band that plays a little something for everyone. They have a great local following and a number of kudos such as several Up & Coming Weekly Best of Fayetteville awards.

Another kind of talent will be on display at the Fair, and it includes some of the most beautiful people in the county. The Cumberland County Fair Pageant is Sept. 4. There are 10 pageant categories for contestants from birth to ages 20 and up.

Of course, we saved the best for last: Rides, lots and lots of rides! Bumper cars, ferris wheels, scramblers, etc. Anything that spins, turns, goes upside down and back up again will on be center stage at the fair. so, grab your sweetie and lock into the ferris wheel and check out the view from the top — or get on a rollercoaster, and let your stomach drop.

With all of the amazing things to do, you won’t want to miss it! So, review the schedule with daily specials listed below.

Admission is $8 per person (adults and children ages 3 and up). Single ride tickets are $1.25; unlimited ride wristbands are $25. Residents can purchase tickets in advance at CapeFearTix.com, Fort Bragg Leisure Travel Services and in person at the Crown Complex Box Office. The fair schedule and special ticket prices are listed below:

Sept. 3: Gates open at 5 p.m. Free admission for healthcare professionals. Children ages 3 - 12 get in for $5. Admission is $8 for all other individuals ages 13 and older.

Sept. 4: Gates open at 1 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults and children 3 years of age and older.

Sept. 5: Gates open at 1 p.m. Day of Giving. Free admission with six non-perishable food items. One free ticket for every six items donated. Admission is $8 for adults and children 3 years of age and older.

Sept. 6: Gates open at 1 p.m. Pay One Price Night $15 admission and rides are unlimited.

Sept. 7- 9: Gates open at 5 p.m. Pay One Price Night $15 admission and rides are unlimited.

Sept. 10: Gates open at 5 p.m. Free admission for school personnel with valid ID. Admission is $8 for all other individuals ages 13 and older.

Sept. 11: Gates open at 1 p.m. Free admission for military and first responders with valid ID. Admission is $8 for all other individuals ages 13 and older.

Sept. 12: Gates open at 1 p.m. Admission is $8 for all individuals ages 13 and older

For all indoor events at the fair, masks must be worn.

For more information about the Cumberland County Fair, including entertainment and exhibits, go to cumberlandcountyfair.org.

Charly Lowry opens 4th Annual Lumbee Film Festival before outdoor screening of 'Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World'

11 Picture1The 4th Annual Lumbee Film Festival returns with 18 new films directed by indigenous filmmakers screening over two days at the Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub on Main Street in Pembroke. This year’s festival is scheduled for Sept. 17-18 and is presented by the North Carolina Museum of Art and includes live music, film, food and fellowship.

“Each year the Lumbee Film Festival gets better and better,” said festival Founding Director Kim Pevia. “I am so excited about this year's line-up of short and feature films. Some are traditional and some have us thinking out of the box. Some are local and some are far away. Just like in real life. Something for everyone. Come join us. You will be glad you did."

The festival witl begin with an outdoor screening of “RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World,” an electrifying look at the Native American influence in popular music despite attempts to ban, censor and erase Indian culture.

The film reveals how early pioneers of the blues and jazz had Native American roots, and how artists like North Carolina’s own Link Wray helped to define its evolution and forever changed the trajectory of rock 'n' roll.

Before the film, Robeson county native and Lumbee Tribe member Charly Lowry will perform a mix of her songs. Lowry appears in “RUMBLE” along with mentor Pura Fé and many other well-known Lumbee musicians. Lowry first gained international recognition as a semi-finalist on “American Idol” in 2004, but has since built a following for her energetic and captivating performances. She is also active as an advocate for Native rights and women’s rights.

The festival is organized through a partnership between the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina and the Cucalorus Film Foundation with the goal of showcasing films made by American Indians while raising awareness about the legacy of indigenous artists. The festival creates a platform for emerging Native artists, especially those working in the Southeastern United States.

Three shorts blocks will screen at the Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub on Sept. 18 at 2 p.m. with the “The Sun Shines, The Water Flows” shorts block which includes films by Lumbee youth like “Climate Change” made through the Unlocking Silent Histories project as well as films from the Wapikoni Mobile collective from Canada who use media to raise awareness about Indigenous cultures, issues and rights.

The “Roots Run Deep” shorts block starts at 3:30 p.m. and includes the poetic and observational documentary “Concrete 49” by LFF Alum Justin Deegan. The short is a subtle and effective examination of the lives of indigenous people living in New York City. The “All My Relations” shorts block brings together five dramatic works to close out the afternoon’s survey of short form indigenous cinema.

A special screening of “The Trancscenders,” a feature film by Montana Cypress (Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida) will be screened immediately following an awards ceremony at 8 p.m. on Sept.18 at the Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub. The film follows the struggles of two brothers who find a remedy that promises to “transform their primitive behavior” as they transition from life in the city which differs greatly from their upbringing on the reservation.

For tickets, passes and the full festival schedule visit www.cucalorus.org/lumbee-film-festival/.

Fayetteville celebrates namesake with concert, ribbon-cutting

09 DSC 0593Each September, The Lafayette Society and the City of Fayetteville celebrate the birthday of the Marquis de Lafayette, the city’s namesake. This year, focus will be on the popular French music concert and a ribbon-cutting and dedication of the new Lafayette Plaza East.

The Lafayette Society’s Hank Parfitt said the annual celebration promotes the significance of Lafayette’s contributions to Fayetteville while educating and entertaining the public through music and the arts. The events are made possible mostly by the efforts of volunteers.

“I am proud of our board, as well as our general membership, for their time, energy and enduring support of our mission as a civic as well as an historical organization,” Parfitt said.
On Sept. 9 at 7:30 p.m., Dr. Gail Morfesis and Friends will present “L’ensemble de la Famille: Musical Families and their Historical Significance” at Hay Street United Methodist Church in downtown Fayetteville.

Morfesis has been organizing and performing in concerts as part of Lafayette celebrations since 2014. She organized this year’s concert with a grant from the Arts Council of Fayetteville/Cumberland County and the North Carolina Arts Council awarded to help promote music in the community.

“The concert is basically performed in French,” she said, “we try to educate the audience about Lafayette and French musical traditions.” There will be translations and notes in the program.

This year, Morfesis wanted to recall an era before electronic devices to highlight the tradition of families entertaining themselves with music — singing and playing instruments and “making music in
their homes.”

“I want to point out that during COVID, because families were at home together, we saw a resurgence of a tradition — families creating and entertaining themselves with music” Morfesis said.

The concert will showcase the talents of professional musical artists from eastern North Carolina and will include married couples, a father-daughter duo, and two groups who are “just like family.”

This lively, fast-paced concert will appeal to a broad audience, Morfesis said. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students and can be purchased at City Center Gallery & Books on Hay Street or online at www.lafayettesociety.org/events. CDC precautions will be observed with safe distancing in the sanctuary but attendees are asked to wear masks.

On Sept. 12 at 2 p.m., the Lafayette Society will be joined by the Mayor and members of the City Council and County Board of Commissioners to dedicate the new Lafayette Plaza East. The existing brick plaza and stage with seating walls on the west side of the Lafayette statue was funded by the Society and dedicated in 2013.

This past year, the Society’s Park and Statue Committee worked with the City to develop a performing stage on the east side of the statue with new landscaping. This created an outdoor amphitheater downtown suitable for concerts and other performances. It also made the entire park more attractive as a place for recreation and gathering.

The Camp Flintlock Fife and Drum will be there to help Mayor Mitch Colvin, Commissioner Glenn Adams, and District 2 Councilwoman Shakeyla Ingram with the ribbon cutting. Lafayette himself will also make an appearance, thanks to re-enactor Stanley Seay.

Pictured above: City officials will help The Lafayette Society dedicate the new Lafayette Plaza East on Sept. 12. (Photo by Dylan Hooker). The music concert will be Sept. 9 at Hay Street United Methodist Church.

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