09-29-10-cape-fear-botanical.gifThings weren’t always this complicated and fast paced. Just a few generations ago, folks spent their time tending to the fields and farm animals, spinning wool for their clothes and quilting blankets for the winter. They’d sit on the front porch when they had a few minutes, sing songs, play music and chat about the day.

Today’s families are likely to eat dinner in the car out of a fast-food bag and spend the evening plugged in to either the TV, computer or some other electronic gad-get — and an evening spent on the porch talking and singing songs while daddy strums the guitar and mama mends clothes — yeah right.

On Oct. 3 Cape Fear Botanical Garden is hosting Heritage Day. It is a celebra-tion of life at the turn of the 19th century, a tribute to nostalgia and to our heritage — an opportunity to remember the good old days and to show a younger generation some of the finer things of days gone by.

“Heritage Festival is a great way for kids to learn about agriculture and life at the turn of the 19th century. Kids can experience what is was like to grow up in this time period through crafts and games. This festival allows the Garden to offer an educational experience in a fun and unique way!” said Cape Fear Botanical Garden Director of Events Sharon Osborne.

Kids and adults alike will be enter-tained with games like hopscotch, egg races marbles and corn husk dolls. There will be pony rides and horse shoes, too. When it is time to take a break, have a seat and enjoy the music of The Parsons, a traditional bluegrass band and local favorite.

Mitch Capel, who is considered the “national interpreter” for works by poet laureate Paul Lawrence Dunbar (1872-1906), will perform as Gran’daddy Junebug. A native of Southern Pines, Capel comes from a family of story tellers. His dad used to entertain Capel with stories of his youth. Capel’s website says “Gran’daddy Junebug has been described as ‘a national treasure’, ‘a transformer of lives’, ‘unexpectedly powerful’ and ‘a word magician’...he coined the term ‘sto’etry’ to describe his stories recited po-etically. Continuing his family tradition of preserving culture and teaching through stories, Gran’daddy Junebug teaches personal responsibility and respect for self and others through the African oral tradition of call and response. He utilizes audience participation to share his wisdom on being true to self, fi nding your right path, coping with peer pressure and always doing the best you can. The stories are developmentally appropriate for all ages, or as he likes to say, ‘from the day care to the rest home.’”

While you are there take a peek at the progress being made on the new visitors complex. “Our garden is growing and festival attendees will see that with the construction taking place at the Wyatt Visitors Pavilion Complex. The growth that we are experiencing will enable us to offer even more programming like Heritage Festival. Our goal is to serve as many people in this region as possible!” said Jennifer Sullivan, executive director of the garden.

Artisans and crafters will showcase traditional crafts like dutch-oven cooking, basketry, pottery, weaving, quilting and even tatting (the art of lace making). There will also be souvenirs and items for purchase if you find something that tickles your fancy.

The garden opens at noon and will celebrate Heri-tage Day until 4 p.m. Visit www.capefearbg.org for more information or give the garden a call at 486-0221.

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