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Hi Fellow Members

Greetings to my fellow "Thumbpickers". I realize that this newsletter is extremely late; however, the delay has been intentional to some degree due to the following items, which I will now elaborate on in detail.

After a great deal of thought and soul searching relative to the future of our organization and after many meetings with Dr. William C. Findt, Vice President for Development and Dr. Douglas Eason, President of Mitchell Community College located in Statesville, an agreement has been reached which allows our yearly conventions to be held on the Mitchell Community College (MCC) Campus with the proceeds going to the Mitchell Community College Endowment for Excellence. I realize that this moves our convention once again (hopefully for the last time). I do believe however that once you have the opportunity to visit the MCC Campus, I know you will appreciate the two (2) auditoriums (Shearer Hall - seating capacity 600 and The Rotary Auditorium - seating capacity 150) which are available to us for nightly concerts. Also, the Student Union Building will be available for sitting around and jamming and we will have classrooms for individual seminars. Also, there is plenty of parking and the MCC Campus is right down town Statesville with lots of historic sites and eating establishments.

If we continue to grow as I am sure we will, and need more room, the Statesville Civic Center is basically next door to MCC with approximately 2000 seating capacity. I'm sure you are aware of the logistics of organizing and promoting our convention and that it requires a great deal of time and effort along with the financial burden. Our web page, newsletters, e-mail promotional contacts, sponsor contacts and convention staffing will now be provided to a great extent by the college.

I will add that in our agreement with MCC leaders, a stipulation was agreed to that this event and organization and its participants would always endeavor to preserve and promote the art of Thumb and Finger Style Guitar Playing.

For more information contact the
Holiday Inn Express
740 Sullivan Rd. 
Interstate 40 exit 151
Tel: 1-704-8724101
Fax: 1-704-8786014

Board member Richard Smith (not the picker Richard Smith) who is our resident computer guru is presently working with MCC computer specialists to link our web side and MCC web site so our members and interested parties can attain more information on the MCC campus. We hope to have this completed shortly.

The Holiday Inn Express at I-40 exit 151 will be lodging headquarters for our 2003 convention. This Inn has 130 plus rooms. Please note attached brochures. Please call early for reduced rate reservations.

We will register at 12:00 noon on Friday, November 7th and our seminars and open mike segments will be held at the Holiday Inn Express. We will break at 5:00 p.m. each day and will reconvene at 6:30 p.m. at Mitchell Community College's Shearer Hall Auditorium for our nightly concerts. If we should have an overflow crowd, we will use both Shearer Hall and Rotary Auditorium and we will run two shows simultaneously by shuttling our performers, as the auditoriums are only a few hundred feet apart.

Please consider my comments carefully as to why this change is being implemented and also know that in my heart I feel this will help our organization and our attendance grow with a slight amount of adjustment on our part. We will enjoy our convention just as well if not more.

In closing, at present we have Guy Van Duser, Richard & Julia Smith, Buster B. Jones & Bob Saxton on the 2003-convention line-up. We are also working on possibly one or two more headliners.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Clay Lunsford
President NCTAF

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