Sunday, 12 August 2007 20:00
Property purchased last week will be the site of the
Paul and Florence Thomas Memorial Art School. Florence Thomas, referred to by
some as Ashe County’s greatest artist, died earlier this year- leaving a major
provision in a trust for the founding of the school.
Three directors were named
in the trust: Robert Franklin of McFarland and Company, Inc. Publishers,
executive director of the Ashe County Arts Council, Jane Lonon and painter
Melba Miller. The property chosen for the school is 10.3 acres in Glendale
Springs on Trading Post Road near the Blue Ridge Parkway. The building was
originally known as Lee’s Lodge and includes several residences, a 20-unit
motel and a restaurant. Initially, the school will offer instruction in
landscape painting. Curriculum offerings will be expanded as the school develops.
Classes are expected to begin in the summer of 2008.