A&E Roundup: Buncombe libraries open at 50% capacity

PUBLIC SERVICE: North Asheville Library employees Meredith Eudy, left, and Sara Kaglic adjust to new safety precautions at the circulation desk. Buncombe County Libraries reopen at 50% capacity with limited hours and services on Oct. 13. Photo courtesy of Buncombe County Government

After offering curbside pickup at multiple branches since June, Buncombe County Public Libraries will reopen indoor spaces at all but two locations on Tuesday, Oct. 13. The East Asheville Library remains closed for construction, and Pack Memorial Library will reopen at a later date. All other branches will operate with limited hours and services while adhering to Gov. Roy Cooper’s orders for 50% capacity.

Each library has installed plexiglass barriers where needed; increased sanitation and cleaning schedules; increased public accessibility of hand sanitizer and disposable face coverings; and added social distancing markers and signage. In addition, library employees will follow new procedures including daily use of a self-screening tool.

Libraries will be open Tuesdays, 2-7 p.m.; Wednesdays, 1-6 p.m.; Thursdays, 1-6 p.m.; Fridays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.; and Saturdays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Branches will be closed Sundays and Mondays. All patrons over the age of 5 must wear a face covering for the duration of their visit, and those without a face covering will be provided with one. System leaders encourage patrons to take a “grab and go” approach to browsing and in-person checkout to help staff serve a larger number of visitors.

Computer use is available, and seating will be provided for computer users only. Meeting rooms and study spaces will not be available for public use. In-person library programs, including story time, will not be offered, but virtual programs and other digital services started during quarantine will continue. Curbside pickups were discontinued on Oct. 8, and overdue charges, which have been waived since libraries first closed in March, will resume on Tuesday, Oct. 27. avl.mx/8he

Ear candy

Recent Saluda transplant Michael Flynn will share his third solo album, Survive With Me, on Tuesday, Oct. 13. A founding member of Charleston, S.C.-based band Slow Runner, which has toured with the Avett Brothers, Josh Ritter and Built To Spill, Flynn meditates on parenthood, aging and embracing his new surroundings on the pop-forward release, while also exploring darker themes. michaelflynn.com

Steep Canyon Rangers release Arm In Arm on Friday, Oct. 16. The Grammy-winning band’s 13th record was tracked over several days at Southern Ground Studios in Nashville — the group’s first recording experience outside North Carolina. The 11 original compositions were produced by the band with Brandon Bell (John Prine; Zac Brown) and pay tribute to the Rangers’ early influences and bluegrass roots. steepcanyon.com

On the livestream front, soprano Simone Vigilante, cellist Franklin Keel and pianist David Troy Francis take to the White Horse Black Mountain stage 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18, for a show titled “Mountain Hymns: Songs of Grace and Mercy.” Francis describes the program as composed of “sacred and classical music designed to provide an hour of respite, joy and inspiration in these challenging times.” Free, but virtual attendees are encouraged to pay what they can to support the artists and venue. whitehorseblackmountain.com

And following in the footsteps of John Legend, Norah Jones and fellow Asheville-based artist Moses Sumney, Angel Olsen released a “Tiny Desk (Home) Concert” on Oct. 7, filmed behind her home. Accompanied by her electric guitar, Olsen performed “Whole New Mess,” “What It Is (What It Is)” and “Waving, Smiling” from her 2020 album, Whole New Mess, plus “Iota” from 2014’s Burn Your Fire For No Witness. The video was filmed by Durham-based filmmaker Josh Slifee with sound run by Adam McDaniel from Asheville’s Drop of Sun Studios. avl.mx/8i2

Dollar for dollar

Thanks to a grant from a longtime foundation supporter, all donations to the Asheville Art Museum’s Annual Fund, as well as Museum membership upgrades through Dec. 31, will be matched up to $75,000. Funds will provide additional operational support for the Museum, which reopened Sept. 12 after a six-month closure with, according to a press release, “severely reduced revenue from general admission, new memberships, event rentals, program and tour fees, the Museum Store and fundraising events.”

“Meeting this challenge will be essential to our future operations, and we hope that all of you will participate and invite others to join you,” says Pam Myers, the museum’s executive director. “We are looking forward to continuing to transform lives through art in our community and beyond with a dynamic schedule of special exhibitions, programs and events yet this year. I am grateful for the dedication and continued support from our museum members and community.” ashevilleart.org/donate

“Yonder the Piggly Wiggly”

Hendersonville Community Theatre makes its first foray into virtual performances with Driving Miss Daisy. The local production of the 1988 Pulitzer Prize-winning play stars Martha Petchenik as the titular Southern lady, Ronnie Pepper as her chauffeur, Hoke, and Phillip Packer as her concerned son, Boolie. The show is available to view on-demand Friday, Oct. 16-Sunday, Oct. 18. Tickets are $10. hendersonvillecommunitytheatre.org

Pressed to help

Steep Canyon Rangers also contributed its previously unreleased song, “Four Dollar Wine,” to American Vinyl’s forthcoming benefit compilation, They Gave Us a Stage: Asheville Artists For Venues. The record also features work by local artists Papadosio, Alexa Rose, Empire Strikes Brass, Tall Tall Trees, Vaden Landers, Battery Powered Hooker Boots, Travers Brothers, Christy Lynn Band and Secret Shame. Proceeds will go to The Grey Eagle and Sly Grog Lounge, and pre-orders may be made through Saturday, Nov. 7. The LP costs $25, and copies ship worldwide beginning in December. avl.mx/8hb


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About Edwin Arnaudin
Edwin Arnaudin is a staff writer for Mountain Xpress. He also reviews films for ashevillemovies.com and is a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA) and North Carolina Film Critics Association (NCFCA). Follow me @EdwinArnaudin

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