• Scott James Stambaugh will be the first to perform in the concert series at the Murphy Farmers Market this summer. Stambaugh’s show is Saturday, June 2.
    Scott James Stambaugh will be the first to perform in the concert series at the Murphy Farmers Market this summer. Stambaugh’s show is Saturday, June 2.

SCOUTING AROUND: Farmers market to feature concert series

There will be one more reason to visit the Murphy Farmers Market on Saturday mornings at the L&N Depot in downtown Murphy.
    The first Saturday of each month will feature a different artist in the market’s Summer Music Series.
    Music was something everyone wanted to add this year, said Migdalia Jolliffe, a vendor who manages the market. The farmers market in Hayesville had music every week when it started, Jolliffe said. One visitor to the market on Saturday, Laura Depas, said her local market in Franklin also has musical entertainment.
    “It’s fun,” Depas said. “I think it draws more people in for music.”
    Vendors like Chuck Daniel agreed.
    “Anything like that will draw people, and they’ll stay longer – especially if it’s good music,” Daniel said.
    Steven Aft State Farm volunteered to sponsor the series after hearing the market wanted to hold concerts but was lacking funds. Jolliffe asked musicians to perform for $100 – also allowing them to have tip jars – and each one she asked generously agreed.
    “They’re good musicians, but still feel for their little town,” Jolliffe said.
    The concerts will start June 2 with Scott James Stambaugh performing. The series continues with The Settawig Band on July 7, Troy Underwood on Aug. 4, Tom Edwards on Sept. 1 and Dana Rogers on Oct. 6. Performances will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. under a canopy at the corner of the L&N Depot, where the market’s information booth usually is.
    Jolliffe thinks the concerts will bring more local residents to the farmers market. Having the concerts the day after monthly Murphy Art Walks – where several of the market’s vendors also are present – will help bring people back to town for the market.
    “We’ll see how it goes,” Jolliffe said. “If it goes well, maybe next year we’ll have more concerts.”
    The Murphy Farmers Market is held every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. through October.

Kids Fair set June 9
    Family Resources of Cherokee County invites families to its annual Kids Fair from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 9, at Konehete Park in Murphy.
    The theme for this year’s fair is “Splash into Summer.” All the inflatable rides will be water-based, so children especially will want to wear swimsuits and bring towels.
    Christy Armstrong, director of Family Resources, said the organization has been be able to provide this free event for about 20 years thanks to sponsors, vendor fees and food purchases at the Kids Fair.
    “A lot of parents can’t afford to go on a vacation,” she said. “This is a free event for them.”
    Besides water fun, the event also will include live entertainment. The fair is the biggest fundraiser for the organization, which provides helpful programs throughout the year for local families.
    For details, call Family Resources at 837-3460.

Funding approved for art tour
    The Cherokee County Arts Council is presenting a studio tour this summer to improve upon its promotion of local artists, and the Cherokee County Tourism Development Authority is showing its support by giving the council $1,500 to promote the event.
    The Mountain Arts Studio Tour will be held Saturday and Sunday, July 28-29, and replaces the one-day Art, River & Music Festival that the council presented for seven years.
    “The Mountain Arts
Studio Tour allows us to better support local working artists while reaching a wide audience of art lovers, both local residents and visitors to the area,” said David Vowell, director of the arts council.
    The tour will include up to 15 studio stops from Murphy to Brasstown to Hayesville for folks to meet and learn about the artists. Thirteen artists at eight locations already are committed for the tour. Working studio artists in Cherokee or Clay counties may apply to participate through May 31, but selection is juried and limited to 15 artists this first year.
    For details, email the council at director@cherokeeartscouncil.org or call 835-0550.
    Samantha Sinclair is the Scouting Around columnist for the Cherokee Scout. You can reach her by email, scoutingaround@cherokeescout.com; fax, 837-5832; or by leaving a message in the office at 837-5122.