& Broyhill Service Award
For immediate release:
Blowing Rock, NC; August 10, 2023: The Blowing Rock Civic Association (BRCA) held its eighth annual membership meeting on Thursday, August 10, 2023 at the famous Perry Car Barn in Blowing Rock. It was attended by approximately one hundred fifty members of this active community organization.
The BRCA was started in 2015 by a group of citizens to promote and improve the quality of life in Blowing Rock by evaluating civic issues, educating and engaging residents on key issues, working with local government and the business community, and encouraging citizens to register to vote, to be involved and to vote in local elections in which a few votes can make a big difference.
BRCA Chair Jean Kitchin told the audience, “We are very grateful for the world class
scenery, the matchless seasonal climate and the friendly people who make Blowing Rock a uniquely special place.” Kitchin emphasized that the BRCA recognizes the importance of all of the town’s residents, full time and seasonal, for all have made major commitments to the town that are the cornerstone for the town’s success and ability to provide required services.
Kitchin called on BRCA Vice President Tom Barrett who noted that during the past year the BRCA and its leaders have worked on many important matters including:
- Interviews with candidates for the 2022 Watauga County Commissioners’
- Advocating for improved ambulance service for Blowing Rock
- Exploring ideas for improving downtown congestion and parking
- Working with town staff and Council to amend the town’s short term rental
regulations and improve disclosure on the town’s website about them
- Expanding the information being presented publicly regarding the proposal to
bury downtown utility lines underground
- Conducting surveys of residents to identify primary areas of concern and
communicating the survey results to town officials
- Sponsoring presentations by Chuck Mantooth, CEO of Appalachian Regional
Medical Center in Boone, regarding the expanding capabilities of the hospital and
the significance of timely transport to the emergency room
Courtesy of Blowing Rock Civic Association
- Sponsoring Memorial Day and Veterans’ Day commemorative programs
- Producing popular films with the Blowing Rock Historical Society on the
fascinating history of Blowing Rock and the Queens of Blowing Rock
- Providing popular free summer concerts in Broyhill Park, the final one being
Smokin’ Joe Randolph on Thursday, August 17 from 5 to 7 pm
BRCA communicates through publishing frequent email releases to the hundreds of recipients on its mailing list, its popular “28605″ video releases featuring BRCA’s own Tom Barrett, and through community meetings.
BRCA also promotes voter registration and helps citizens to inform themselves about candidates in local elections by conducting candidate interviews, both in person and in writing. Kitchin said that with town council and mayor elections coming up this fall in Blowing Rock, the BRCA is making plans to engage in these activities once more. Kitchin expressed appreciation to BRCA Board member Chip Perry for allowing the BRCA to hold the meeting in his Car Barn. Perry welcomed the group and gave a brief history of his outstanding facility and superb car collection and of the historic property that is home to the unique building.
A highlight of the meeting was the annual presentation of The Paul H. Broyhill Community Service Award named in honor of one of Blowing Rock’s greatest benefactors. The Broyhill Award is given to a citizen who has rendered extraordinary service to the community in the past year.
BRCA board member David Goodson presided over the presentation on behalf of the Award Committee. The award recipient was introduced by BRCA Trustee and Executive Committee member, and previous Broyhill Award recipient, Dr. Barry Buxton, who said, “…it’s a real pleasure to present this award to one who has dedicated a large portion of his life to the success and well-being of a one hundred year old, nationally recognized Blowing Rock institution, which locals refer to simply as ‘the Horse Show.’” Buxton then announced that the 2023 Paul H. Broyhill Community Service Award goes to Burr Collier, who has served as President of the Blowing Rock Charity Horse Show for over three decades and also as President of the Blowing Rock Charity Horse Show
Foundation since its inception. Mr. Collier has overseen a period of substantial growth in size and scope for the Horse Show which has been accomplished without sacrificing the small town charm of its events. The Horse Show’s Centennial, its $7 million annual economic impact and its many awards, including its 2023 recognition as one of America’s Top Ten Horse Shows, were also noted. Joining Dr. Buxton to present the award was Hunt Broyhill, a BRCA Trustee and head of the Broyhill Family Foundation, who also expressed gratitude and congratulations to Mr.
Collier for his great service to the Blowing Rock community.