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Bikes, Blues, BBQ and Art

The Fayetteville Underground will showcase Blues, Bikes & Barbecue-related art during the gallery’s September exhibit. Visiting artist Terry Dushan will present America in Motion, a series of photographs captured during previous gatherings, which emphasizes the artistic side of the motorcycle rally as well as highlighting the near constant motion of the event.

In addition to Dushan’s photography, several Underground member artists are also planning to display motorcycle-themed pieces in September. The Underground’s new exhibit will be unveiled at the September First Thursday Art Walk on the Fayetteville Square,Sept. 5 from 5-8:30 p.m.

Duggar Family Holds Benefit

The Duggar family from TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting will hold a Flea Market and Auction, Saturday, Sept. 7 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. at 500 Arbor Acres Avenue in Springdale.

The flea market will be raising funds for the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, where their youngest, Josie Brooklyn, was born premature and thrived under the care of the hospital. The family is accepting donated items from the community to be sold at the event, including household goods, small furniture, games, toys, electronics, clothing and similar items in working condition. Come attend and shop to support their cause.

*Television crews will be taping on Sept. 7.

Receive 10 Free Trees For Planting

Everyone from Arkansas who joins the Arbor Day Foundation in September will receive 10 free trees — eastern redbud, white pine, sugar maple, white flowering dogwood, pin oak, red maple, river birch, silver maple, northern red oak and Colorado blue spruce — as part of the Foundation’s Trees for America program. Through Trees for America, everyone is encouraged to plant trees for the benefit of the environment and quality-of-life. With 1 million members, the Arbor Day Foundation is the nation’s largest nonprofit organization dedicated to planting trees.

The trees will be shipped postpaid at the right time for planting between Oct. 15 and Dec. 10. The 6- to 12-inch trees are guaranteed to grow or they will be replaced free of charge. Easy-to-follow planting instructions are enclosed with each shipment of trees. New members of the Arbor Day Foundation will also receive The Tree Book, which includes information about tree planting and care. To receive the 10 free trees, send a $10 membership contribution to Ten Trees, Arbor Day Foundation, 100 Arbor Ave., Nebraska City, NE 68410, by September 30, 2013, or join online at arborday.org/september.

Song Writing Competition

The International Songwriting Competition 2013 Deadline is coming up soon — Sept. 18, but songwriters still have time to enter for this year’s competition (including entering addtional songs), and the competition is open to both signed and unsigned artists.

ISC gives away more than $150,000 in cash and prizes to 68 winners, including $25,000 cash to the Grand Prize winner. Amateur and professional songwriters are welcome to enter. ISC accepts entries by mail or online (platforms include ISC, Sonicbids, ReverbNation, Broadjam and Facebook). Entering ISC is now easier than ever, because ISC will go to any Radio Airplay, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, YouTube, or Facebook page to listen to the songs. To enter or learn more, visit www.songwritingcompetition.com.

Farmers’ Almanac Claims Cold Winter

According to the 2014 edition of the Farmers’ Almanac, which hit store shelves on Monday, Aug. 26, about two-thirds of the nation will experience below-average temperatures during the coming winter. The Almanac, which has been predicting the weather for 197 years, uses adjectives such as “biting, bitterly and piercing” to describe how cold it believes this winter will be.

The only areas predicted to see “close to normal” winter temperatures are the Far West and the Southeast (good news if you live in those areas or plan on visiting). The coldest temperatures will be over the Northern Plains on east into the Great Lakes, but the bitter cold will also invade New England and the Mid-Atlantic regions. Yes, the Farmers’ Almanac believes that the “days of shivery” are back.

Book Chronicles AR Family In Civil War

A Shelter in the Time of Storm is an engaging family saga chronicling the chaotic events of the twentieth century and an Arkansas family’s part in that era. Through their involvement in war and politics, the Townley-Merritt family experiences tragedy and triumph and emerges as state and national leaders. Some volunteer for military service, some serve in activated National Guard units, some are accidentally in harm’s way in the nation’s conflicts. None of them wait to be drafted.

They find themselves in ‘faraway places with strange-sounding names.’ But however far away they stray, they always return to A Shelter in the Time of Storm — the family home in Arkansas. There, they renew their strength to return to the battles, both foreign and domestic, to honor their oath to defend their nation.

The book chronicles how an ordinary American family survives the Great Depression of the 1930s and the great challenges of World War II, only to send the sons of those veterans into the Korean and Vietnam wars. Author M.M. Merritt adroitly mixes love and war in a manner that teaches American history and American character, as well as underscores how important families are to America’s integrity as a leading world power.

Author M.M. Merritt, a resident of Bowling Green, Ky., will be available to sign copies of her book, A Shelter in a Time of Storm, at the Inn at Carnall Hall in Fayetteville from 5-7 p.m. on Sept. 12.

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