Being situated on the cusp of the Tar & Neuse Rivers, we at R.A. Fountain, General Store & Internet Café, have a profound interest in both of these vital natural resources. We've put together a program for April 2 that will bring the riverkeepers from both rivers together, so that they can explain what their jobs are, and how we as citizens of this great bioregion can help in the work they do.
Heather Jacobs will outline plans for her canoe trip down the Tar, which will conclude the following weekend, April 10. We're hoping to organize a caravan of canoes who'll meet her at Penny Hill or Old Sparta and accompany her on down to Falkland (likely date around April 21).
Larry Baldwin will be reporting on the Neuse Riversweep, which will have just concluded when he arrives in Fountain.
But our evening won't be all business. In addition to these two reports, we'll hear a short set of original music by Tony Whetstone, including his original flood-song, "The Tar River Don't Roll."
And film historian Tom Whiteside of Duke University will screen for us two excellent river films, The Dam at Nagarjunasagar and The River. (Both are real film, not video.) In his introduction to the program, Tom will talk about the New Deal political climate that inspired production of The River as well as the significant and lasting influence the film has had on American documentary.
For those interested in arriving early, we'll also be serving Brunswick stew, cooked up in a big iron pot out back of our shop by stewmaster Henry "Pop" Bailey. Bowls $1.50; pints, $2.75; quarts, $5.
And copies of Paul Ferguson's Paddling Eastern North Carolina will be available at the discounted price of $17.95 (regular $19.95).
Admission to this event is $3.
The River (1937, 30 minutes)
A landmark American documentary about the Mississippi River from its headwaters to the Gulf. Written and directed by Pare Lorentz with music by Virgil Thomson. This exceptionally beautiful film examines the impact of deforestation and soil erosion on the entire Mississippi valley.
The Dam at Nagarjvnasagar (1972, 9 minutes)
A documentary recording the construction of the most massive masonry dam ever erected, near Hyderabad in central India, where 30,000 men, women, and children labored for 14 years. Records one day's work, with voices of singing workers, a few coins earned, and a bowl of rice at the end of the day. Ironically, when finished the dam provided enough water to irrigate land to feed 10 million people, the same number who were added to India's population during the 14 years of construction. Narrated by Ossie Davis. Produced by Gene Searchinger.