Up & Coming Weekly

July 18, 2023

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 12 of 24

12 UCW JULY 19 - 25, 2023 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM Sunset Series buzzes with bees, food, music, botanical history by KATRINA WILSON An all-female country and "new" grass band, moonshine, cocktails and a unique NASCAR exhibit are a few of the many options to experience at Cape Fear Botanical Garden's Sunset Series event on July 21. According to Beth Hess, Marketing and Sponsorship Consultant at Cape Fear Botanical Garden, the Sunset Series allows attendees to enjoy the long stretches of daylight during the summer. It even invites people to experience the garden during hours when they are usually closed. e Sunset Series has been a part of summers at Cape Fear Botanical Garden since late 2020. "We have one featured night in June, July and August. At times it has included murder mystery events, performing arts and concerts," Hess said. e July 21 event is bee-themed and is from 6 to 9 p.m. It's for more than just nature lovers. Attendees of the event will be able to purchase from different food trucks on site, Bees & Boards Char- cuterie Co., cocktails and moonshine. "Bees & Boards will be there be- cause of the bee theme and because charcuterie is yummy and great to share with your 'honey,'" Hess said. Admission for CFBG members and children age 5 and under is free. For non-members, children ages 6 to 12 entry is $5; 13+ entry is $10; military with ID is $9; adults 65 and older is $9. Riggsbee Road e concert for July 21 will be performed by Riggsbee Road, a music group from Raleigh. Hess said that Riggsbee Road was chosen for more than its talent and because of its ties to North Carolina. "ey have their big banjo sound and harmonies reminiscent of early roots of our region's music. ey also continue to perform songs with strong storytelling — from all time periods and genres — that bring back that feeling of rocking on a porch at sunset listening to great stories from neighbors and friends," Hess said. e band was created in 2020 amid the COVID pandemic. ey started as a band of five and grew to seven. Riggsbee Road got its name be- cause of a walk in the cemetery and a romance story almost a century old. Shelley Kelly, lead vocalist in the group, described how it happened. "A few months into the project, we needed a name, so we all started brainstorming. We had a long list of ideas, but nothing that really stuck," Kelly said. She and her husband walked through the Oakwood Cemetery in downtown Raleigh — an old, historic landmark in the historic Oakwood neighborhood. "As we walked, we looked at the names on tombstones for inspira- tion. We saw Riggsbee and we both thought it sounded like a bluegrass band," she said. She added it to the list and presented it to the band and they were warm to it. A few weeks later, it was Valentine's Day 2021, and an article popped up in her newsfeed about a woman who met and fell in love with her husband at a soda shop on the first floor of the Hudson Belk Building in downtown Raleigh. Kelly thought it was interesting because she met her husband in the same building on the first floor. "e building is called the Hudson today, converted to condos, and is where I lived when I met my hus- band in 2016," she said. "e article listed her last name as Riggsbee and continued to tell the story of how the couple married, built a house in 1928, had a family and were buried at Oakwood Cemetery!" As coincidences go, dots connected for Kelly. "My husband and I got married and bought a house near downtown that was built in 1928! My husband is also the person who encouraged me to start the dream project," she said. Kelly said the women in the band said Riggsbee had to be the name of the group and they just added "Road" to the end. Riggsbee Road covers pop, country and classic tunes. As Kelly said, "We cover from Dolly Parton, Chris Sta- pleton, Bon Jovi to e Judds. From Harry Styles to Meghan Trainor." She said that Bluegrass music is one of the first styles of music played in North Carolina. She said it has an earthy, rooted, wholesome feel — especially because she and the other members have gospel and Christian roots. "Our audience tells us they can't guess what's coming next when we perform," Kelly said. "We keep them on their toes." Horticulture, Hooch & Outlaws "For 2023, we themed the Sunset Series events to coordinate with our Special Exhibit: Horticulture, Hooch & Outlaws in Fast Cars," Hess said. e tour is self-guided with infor- mational panels, memorabilia and more looks at the botanical roots of racing in the south. "From the grains used to make the moonshine all the way to the ways NASCAR is looking at biofuels today," she said. e exhibit is on loan from Hortica- tion, a horticulturally based educa- tion company that develops travel- ing exhibits for gardens. For more information visit https://hortication. com/exhibits/horticulture-hooch- and-outlaws-in-fast-cars/ e exhibit at the Cape Fear Bo- tanical Garden runs through Aug. 20. e final Sunset of the season is scheduled for Aug. 18. e theme includes lines, such as race-inspired games with finish lines, country mu- sic line dancing and more. Cape Fear Botanical Garden "We are located two miles from downtown Fayetteville," Hess said. "Right in the middle of business, we are peace, beauty, relaxation and education." Cape Fear Botanical Garden was founded in 1989. It sits on 80 acres of land and is open 360 days a year. For more information visit https:// www.capefearbg.org/ EVENT KATRINA WILSON, Staff Writer. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomin- gweekly.com. 910-484-6200 Riggsbee Road members include (from left): Caroline Tanner, guitar, banjo, backing vocals; Sara Hollis, fiddle and backing vocals; Skye Pixton, banjo, guitar, vocal harmonies; Amy Hall, drums; Shelley Kelly, lead vocalist; Megan Maloney, bass, upright bass cello; and Laura Schuchart, keys and vocal harmonies. (Photo courtesy Riggsbee Road) John Harris, standing between apiaries, served as an advisor to Cape Fear Botanical Garden to establish its bee houses. (Photo courtesy Cape Fear Botanical Garden) is moonshine still was built by CFBG's Daron Stepp, for inclusion in the Horticulture, Hooch & Outlaws in Fast Cars exhibit. (Photo courtesy Cape Fear Botanical Garden)

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