Freedom Festival to help victims of human trafficking; Barter Days underway for food bank; ball drop to help end Alzheimers

Sue Guinn Legg • Jun 12, 2019 at 10:01 PM

Freedom Festival, an artisans’ fair to raise awareness and funds for victims of sexual exploitation and human trafficking, will make its second annual run Saturday, June 15, at the Appalachian Fairgrounds in Gray.

Set for 10 a.m.-4 p.m., the event will feature original works created by more than 50 artisans and crafters including glassware, pottery, garden and home decor, homemade oils and soaps, jewelry, art works, photography and more.

The festival is designed to bring awareness and provide financial support for rescue missions and skill training centers for victims of sexual exploitation and human trafficking operated by the nonprofit Ethnos Movement International.

The event will also feature sale items handcrafted by victims at EMI skill training centers in South Africa, Azaria, and Malawi from which all proceeds will help the centers provide life-changing skills for men, women and children who were left without means to support themselves and their families after being forced into sex slavery, exploited, abandoned and in some cases HIV-infected.

Louise Means, president of USA Ethnos, said last year’s inaugural Tri-Cities Freedom Festival was very successful and this year’s new, central location at the fairgrounds is expected to be an even bigger success, “enabling us to raise more funds for our mission projects."

The event will also feature a Paws & Claws Runway costume competition with $100 cash prizes for the best-dressed dog and cat. The entry fee is $5 per animal with all proceeds going to EMI missions. Registration will open at 10 a.m. and the competition will start at 11.

Popular food trucks and concessions on site for festival will include Evia's Concessions, Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, Joe Bill's Kitchen, Lizzy's Homemade Doughnuts and Mama's Food Factory.

More information about the festival may be obtained by contacting Means at [email protected] More information about the work of EMI can be found at ethnosmi.org.

Barter Theatre’s annual Barter Days, anthrowback celebration of the traditional bartering of food for tickets to the Abingdon, Virginia, theater, kicked off on Wednesday and will continue tonight with a 7:30 performance of “Exit Laughing.”

Admission will be by donation of nonperishable food items for the Feeding America Food Bank of Southwest Virginia. Tickets are limited and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, starting at 5 p.m.

The benefit will continue Saturday, June 15, with a 10 a.m. presentation of “James and the Giant Peach.” Food donations will be accepted beginning at 9.

To learn more about Barter Days and its ties to the theater’s history, visit BarterTheatre.com or contact the box office at 276-628-3991.

Monday’s downpours have extended the chance to get in on Alzheimer’s Tennessee annual Helicopter Ball Drop at Gettysvue Country Club in Knoxville.

To help support the work of Alzheimer’s Association, up to 3,000 numbered golf balls will be dropped from a helicopter onto a giant bullseye at the center of the green and a $2,500 cash prize awarded to the holder of the ticket matching the first ball that lands in the hole or closest to the hole.

Originally scheduled for Monday, June 10, this year’s annual benefit was rained out and rescheduled for Monday, June 17, with about 200 balls still up for grabs.

For those who would like to get in the game and help the association in its work to promote Alzheimer’s education and research, tickets for two balls for $10 may be purchased online at alztennessee.org or by calling the Alzheimer’s Tennessee office at 865-544-6288.

If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at 423-722-0538, [email protected] or P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605.



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