This is White Rock Hall, née White Rock Church, built in 1909 and located in Madison County, about an hour north of Asheville. It belongs to our friends Keith Flynn and Denise Petry. Keith is a poet, author, musician, and the editor of the Asheville Poetry Review, and the church is the first piece of a small arts retreat and conference center he and Denise are putting together. When the campus is complete, there’ll be class spaces, a recording studio, and cottages for overnight stays.
On Saturday, Lowell and I were invited to watch the church get moved from its original spot, at a crossroads, to its new home on a nearby hillside, where it will preside over some beautiful rolling acreage. The morning was cold and gray with a steady drizzle, and the operation got halted a couple times due to wet conditions and an aggressive tree incursion. A couple officers from the Madison County Sheriff’s Department were on hand to control (the nonexistent) traffic and, Keith said, to shoot the moving crew’s foreman “if he drops my church.”
The church had been shut up for a number of years before it went up for sale (it has no power or electricity, and there’s a bigger brick church down the street); a neighbor who was watching the move, a Mr. Hensley in a green John Deere cap, told me he’d last been inside for a funeral in 1966. But the building is still lovely in its bones, with what Denise calls its witch’s hat on top and a bell that clanged once — loudly — as the church got hoisted from its original spot.
Photo: “White Rock Hall Arrives” by Lowell Allen. If you squint you can see a lone figure standing on the hillside behind the church holding a beige umbrella. That’s me! Catching a cold! More photos here.
Archives for February 28, 2008
Here’s my list of recommended Broadway, off-Broadway, and out-of-town shows, updated weekly. In all cases, I gave these shows favorable reviews in The Wall Street Journal when they opened. For more information, click on the title.
Warning: Broadway shows marked with an asterisk were sold out, or nearly so, last week.
• Alfred Hitchcock’s The 39 Steps * (comedy, G, suitable for bright children, closes Mar. 23, reviewed here)
• August: Osage County (drama, R, adult subject matter, closes Apr. 20 and reopens Apr. 29 at the Music Box Theatre for an open-ended run, reviewed here)
• Avenue Q * (musical, R, adult subject matter and one show-stopping scene of puppet-on-puppet sex, reviewed here)
• A Chorus Line (musical, PG-13/R, adult subject matter, reviewed here)
• Grease * (musical, PG-13, some sexual content, reviewed here)
• The Homecoming (drama, R, adult subject matter, closes Apr. 13, reviewed here)
• The Little Mermaid * (musical, G, entirely suitable for children, reviewed here)
• November (comedy, PG-13, profusely spattered with obscene language, here)
• The Seafarer (drama, PG-13, adult subject matter, closes Mar. 30, reviewed here)
• Sunday in the Park with George (musical, PG-13, extended through June 16, reviewed here)
CLOSING NEXT WEEK ON BROADWAY:
• Is He Dead? (farce, G, reasonably family-friendly, closes Mar. 9, reviewed here)
• Rock ‘n’ Roll (drama, PG-13, way too complicated for kids, closes Mar. 9, reviewed here)
“One always dies too soon–or too late. And yet, life is there, finished: the line is drawn, and it must all be added up. You are nothing other than your life.”
Jean-Paul Sartre, No Exit