Skaggs brings more than music

Sue Guinn Legg • Mar 14, 2012 at 10:18 PM

Ricky Skaggs and Sharon and Buck White, headline performers for this year’s new and musically improved Jonesborough Days and Nights celebration, gave an impromptu performance at The Daily Bread Restaurant in Jonesborough Wednesday for a crowd of about 50 diners who turned out for a $75 a plate luncheon to benefit the Jonesborough Ministerial Association Pantry.

In a news conference following the luncheon, former NBA team owner George Shinn, who secured the Grammy winners’ appearances at the annual Jonesborough festival, thanked the guests for supporting the JAMA Pantry and invited them to purchase tickets for Skaggs’ June 30 benefit concert in Jonesborough. He also asked them to add their gifts to contributions to be collected for Shinn’s TruLight Foundation during The Whites’ free concert on July 1.

Skaggs told the crowd his roots run deep through Northeast Tennessee and he looks forward to spending time here and photographing historic sites in the area during his July visit.

“I hope I can come early and do some photographing here and in Rogersville’s old downtown,” Skaggs said.

A native of Eastern Kentucky, Skaggs said he has a grandfather and a couple of uncles of several generations past who stopped at Sycamore Shoals while on a hunting excursion through the area and he is excited about his opportunity to help celebrate the region’s rich mountain heritage. Skaggs said he also hopes to exhibit some of his photography at Jonesborough Days and Nights.

Skaggs’ wife, Sharon White, said she and her father, Buck, and sister, Cheryl, have enjoyed performing the “old time” music of the region most of their lives and know they will have a good time while in Jonesborough.

Chris Smith, marketing director for the TruLight Foundation, said proceeds from Skaggs’ Saturday night concert at Jonesborough Days and Nights and donations collected during The Whites’ Sunday afternoon appearance will go to local and international Christian causes supported by the foundation, including local hunger relief, ongoing work to assist earthquake victims in Haiti, and scholarships to Fruitland Baptist Bible Institute in Hendersonville, N.C.

Melinda Copp, events coordinator for the town, said work is continuing on a lineup of local performers for a Friday night concert also added to this year’s Jonesborough event to bring a new musical element to the decades-old celebration.

General admission to Skaggs’ concert behind the Washington County Courthouse on Main Street is $25. Admission to a VIP tent where refreshments will be served during the concert is $50. Tickets may be reserved by emailing Smith at chris.smith@trulightfoundation.com or calling 888-925-9521.

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