Appalachian gathering planned

PICKENS — For the first time ever, six different non-profits in Pickens have joined efforts to host the Gathering On Appalachian Life (GOAL) from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 28.

2-18 Page 1A.inddThe festival and mini-conference will include an opening session, four hour-long workshop sessions, an Appalachian lunch and vendor tables and silent auction.

“We are so excited that all of these entities have come together to offer this opportunity for people to learn about our community’s history and culture and to participate in some hands-on activities,” GOAL organizer Betty McDaniel said.

The “base” for the event will be the Hagood Community Center, also known as the Pickens Senior Center, but workshops will also be held at other venues in the Pickens area, including Hagood Mill and the Pickens County Museum.

Speakers at the opening session will be Dr. Tom Cloer, Dennis Chastain and Dot Jackson.

The workshop sessions will include more than 30 interactive workshops and tours on topics such as moonshining, primitive technology and artifacts, quilting, genealogy, the Cherokee Trail, Appalachian music and dance and hearthside cooking.

Registration is now open. If you register before Feb. 27, tickets are $20 and lunch is an additional $5.

“We’re planning a home-cooked meal of chicken and dumplings, greens and apple pie, all prepared by our seniors at the center,” McDaniel said. “You don’t want to miss this wonderful event.”

The six hosting non-profits are Birchwood Inc., Hagood Community Center, Hagood Mill, Pickens County Historical Society, Pickens Revitalization Association (PRA) and Preserving Our Southern Appalachian Music (POSAM).

To register for the event, or for more information, visit or call (864) 878-4257.