Posts Tagged ‘Oconee County SC’

Oconee County Arts & Historical Ambassador Award Was Awarded to Martha File in Upstate, SC

January 31, 2018

The Oconee County Arts & Historical Commission announces Martha File as the recipient of the 2017 Arts and Historical Ambassador Award. File is the inaugural winner of the Ambassador Award, created to recognize a volunteer with “Outstanding Contributions” in the fields of Art, History or Culture in Oconee County. The Ambassador Award honors achievements that extend beyond the expected and make a difference in our community.

Martha File, a founding member of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail (UHQT), has worked diligently to educate and grow the efforts of South Carolina’s first quilt trail. Oconee County was the first County in South Carolina to embrace the quilt trail concept and there are now over 200 quilts on display across Oconee, Anderson and Pickens Counties. File has coordinated trail expansion, recruited numerous volunteers and as a result, the trail now has a studio in each of the three counties. In addition, she has worked with other counties across South Carolina and neighboring states to introduce and provide resources for additional quilt trails.

Mari Noorai, chairperson of the arts and historical commission says, “Martha’s service to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail has promoted Oconee County and its heritage. Her dedication and unwavering initiative make Martha the 2017 Arts & Historical Ambassador. Many thanks to Martha and all our exemplary volunteers that help us to ‘Celebrate Oconee.'”

Phil Shirley, director of parks, recreation and tourism for Oconee County says, “I remember Martha’s very first pitch to me about the idea of a quilt trail in 2009. I never imagined it growing to over 200 quilts and spreading across the Upstate. File’s dedication and leadership bring a shining light to our community and we congratulate her on being named the 2017 Oconee County Arts and Historical Ambassador of the Year.”

File says, “On behalf of the all the volunteers of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail we are honored to have been selected for this award. Helping preserve and promote the history of the Upstate through quilts and sharing the stories of those who made them is a very rewarding experience for us. We would like to thank the many people who have helped us on the journey and we look forward to the new adventures that await us.”

File will be recognized and presented an engraved plaque at the Spring Arts and Historical reception. In addition, a donation will be made in her honor to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

For more information on the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, visit (


Devils Fork State Park in Oconee County, SC, Joins Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail

February 21, 2012

Cynthia Leggett brings us news of the first quilt block/square installed in a SC State Park, the latest entry to the Quilt Trail. Devils Fork State Park has joined the Quilt Trail with the addition of a quilt block originally designed by local quilter, Betsy Ward of Seneca, SC. The original quilt hanging, called “Rolling Landscape – Lake and Mountains,” was mounted on the Ranger Station and designed and made by Ward as part of a class taught by Carol Britt of Wytheville, VA, at an Appalachian Quilt Gathering at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.  “In the class, we layered fabric and cut a soft curving line across the colors that we chose to be part of the picture.  By adding a small sailboat button, I was able to gain the proportional perspective,” says Ward.

Devils Fork State Park is situated on the southern shores of Lake Jocassee, in Oconee County, SC. The South Carolina State Park Service manages Devils Fork as a traditional state park. It is located 5 miles north of Salem and can be reached by traveling scenic Hwy. 11 to Lake Jocassee Road or Boones Creek Road. Devils Fork contains 644 acres and provides the only boat access to Lake Jocassee.  Facilities include two campgrounds with water and electrical hookups, 20 modern villas for those who prefer extra amenities for overnight accommodations, three picnic areas, two covered shelters and four boat launch areas with parking. Devils Fork also has several hiking trails through lush forests filled with wildflowers, including the Oconee Bell.

The  Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail is sponsored by the Mountain Lakes Region of the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor and the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor grant program.

The Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail started with one quilt square mounted on the Oconee Heritage Center in Walhalla. It quickly spread to over 30 quilt panels in Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties mounted on barns, businesses, homes and public buildings. There are currently over 70 quilt squares located on the Trail.

In a related event, on Feb. 26, from 2-4pm, Martha File, Chairperson of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail will give a lecture about the Trail at the Historic Ballenger House, 212 East South Third St. in Seneca, SC. Also featured will be Suzi Parron, newly published author of “Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement.” Parron will sign copies of her book which will be available for purchase at the event.

For more information about the Trail, stories and pictures, visit (

4th Annual POP – Pickens, Oconee, Pendleton Open Studio Tour Calls for Artist Entries

December 29, 2010

The Blue Ridge Arts Council, based in Seneca, SC, is once again pleased to present the POP Open Studio Tour which provides an opportunity for the public to visit local artists in their working studios in Pickens, Oconee, & Pendleton Counties in SC. The visitors will have the opportunity to interact with the artists as they demonstrate their skills and educate the visitors about the process of creating art. The event, which takes place from Apr. 30 – May 1, 2011, also allows you to purchase incredible artwork directly from the artist with no commission markups.

Artist applications are due, Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011. Artist entry fee returns to the original $50.00 per individual artist. The 2011 application form is available online and at the BRAC office at 111 E. South 2nd Street in Seneca, SC, with detailed entry instructions and time line.

In addition to the tour itself, participating artists will display their work of art in a preview exhibit and opening reception at Duke’s World of Energy beginning April 14, 2011. Visitors are invited to meet the artists, view the artwork and select their tour studio destinations. The exhibit will continue through May 6, 2011.

“Clusters” of artist studios in close proximity to each other will allow touring visitors to enjoy multiple artists with less driving.

Partnering organizations will be offering space to artists without studios, or in isolated areas, for use on demonstrations and exhibiting during the tour. You may wish to consider this in your planning.

Please submit the required application forms, photos and fee by Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011 via e-mail to: ( – Subject Line should  include: Application & photos.

Additional information may also be requested at that e-mail address or by phoning 864/882-2722 or visit (

This event is funded in part by: Clemson ATAX, Oconee County ATAX, Pickens County ATAX, and Seneca Hospitality & Accommodations Tax.