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Trails and Trilliums to Highlight Children and the Arts

Posted on Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at 12:18 pm

Trails and trilliums

The 12th perennial Trails & Trilliums (April 10-12), will showcase the talents of area children in both music and art. “Children are a focus of this year’s festival,” said Friends of South Cumberland President Ty Burnett, “since we are fortunate enough to have Richard Louv, noted author of Last Child in the Woods, as our keynote speaker.” The Trails & Trilliums Children’s Choir Concert featuring the music of Appalachia will open the festival on Friday April 10 at 5:30, and children from area schools are submitting nature-themed artworks for the ART for the PARK exhibition during the weekend. A generous grant from the South Cumberland Community Fund is helping defray the Children’s Choir costs, which include lunch, t-shirts and individual preparation CDs for each participant.

The Children’s Choir Concert will be held in the Monteagle Sunday School Assembly Auditorium, and will be free and open to the public. The choir, composed of 120 area children in grades 4-8, are from Cowan Elementary, Sewanee Elementary, Monteagle Elementary, Tracy City Elementary, Coalmont Elementary and North Elementary. Several homeschooled children are also taking part. Nancy Boone Allsbrook, a Monteagle resident and retired coordinator of Music Education in the MTSU School of Music, is organizing this unique event. She has many years of experience conducting and organizing children’s choirs and notes that she is delighted to be working with area music teachers Teresa Brown, Tricia Hiers and other talented volunteers.

According to Allsbrook, children will be working hard for the next several months preparing music for the festival when they will come together under the direction of nationally renowned composer and conductor Dr. Mary Goetze of Bloomington, Ind. Appalachian singer Carol Ponder will be a special guest artist, and Cameron Swallow with members of the Tuesday Jam in Tracy City will play before the concert. Those interested in participating or volunteering with Trails & Trilliums music should contact Allsbrook,

Nature-themed artwork by school children from Grundy, Marion and Franklin counties in grades 1-6 will be on display all weekend as part to the ART for the PARK exhibition and sale in the Assembly Dining Hall. Jana Barrett, Mayor of Altamont and Grundy County Art teacher, has already collected several hundred works from her students. A gift from Margaret Donohue of Sewanee Realty is helping defray the cost of art supplies. Dede Clements and Betty Barton Blythe are coordinating the project as well as organizing the festival artists and vendors. For information, contact

According to Linda Parrish, Trails & Trilliums Chair, “Both of these events will be great enrichment opportunities for the children who participate. We are delighted to include the arts along with our focus on connecting children to nature.” For festival information, www.trailsandtrilliums.o