Course Listing

Calendar view

Classes appear on this list until the online registration date deadline – you may still be able to register for these upcoming classes over the phone.

To view upcoming classes after the online registration date has passed, including ongoing series or past classes, click on the link for the calendar view.

To register over the phone, give us a call at 276-236-3500.

Free Flatfooting Workshop at the BRMC

August 1, 2016

Dancing at the Blue Ridge Music CenterIntro to Flatfooting with Marianne Kovatch at the Blue Ridge Music Center
Monday, August 1, 11:30am-12:30pm
Free!

Join us the first Monday of the month in June, July, August and September on the Breezeway at the Blue Ridge Music Center, milepost 214 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, for an Introduction to Flatfooting. We'll start at 11:30 learning a few steps before the start of the Mountain Midday Music. At noon the Buck Mountain Band will begin kicking up their tunes so you can practice what you've been learning. Marianne will stick around until 12:30 to teach a couple more steps, call a square dance, or just have fun dancing with you to this fabulous old-time band.

No preregistration is needed.

This class is part of our Music Making in Galax series supported in part by the National Endowment of the Arts, and is co-sponsored by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation.

Register Now

Successful Color Mixing with Viktoria Majestic

August 5, 2016

colors2Successful Color Mixing with Viktoria Majestic
Friday, August 5, 9:00am-4:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by July 23 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $10.00, payable to instructor, for canvas, paints, use of brushes and necessary solvents
Age 18+
All levels

In this workshop each student will learn how to mix and control color, as well as save money on paints by being able to produce any color they need, from the three primary colors and white.
Studying the color wheel and understanding basic color theory will help you increase your color mixing ability, so that you can create all the beautiful paintings you want whether it's landscape, still life or portrait.

We will also create color charts that you will take home for future reference.

Viktoria will demonstrate with oils, but the same color mixing techniques apply equally to acrylics and watercolors.

Register Now

Fiddlers Week: Exhibits

george pegramFiddlers Week: Exhibits
     7 Days In August
     Galax Fiddlers Convention Through the Decades
Monday, August 8 - Saturday, August 13

Stop by Chestnut Creek School of the Arts, 100 N Main Street, to view the special Galax Old Fiddlers' Convention related exhibits.

7 Days in August is and exhibit of photos by Pat Jarrett of people and other images taken at the Fiddlers' Convention over the past several years, with an introduction by Jon Lohman, of the Virginia Folklife Program.

Through the Decades is a historical look of winners in 1935, 1940, 1950, 1960, 1970, 1980, 1990, 2000, and 2010, with a discussion of major trends between NEA-logo-colordecades and information about some of the musicians who have placed in the competition over the years.

These exhibits are part of our Music Making in Galax series, supported in part by National Endowment for the Arts.

Register Now

Fiddlers Week - Banjo and Fiddle Duets

August 10, 2016

kirk and eddieFiddlers Week - Banjo and Fiddle Duets Showcase
Wednesday, August 10, 1:00 pm

The showcase/discussions during Fiddlers Week are always popular events, so come early to get a good seat!

The Banjo Fiddle Duet showcase will feature several pairs of banjo and fiddle players who will talk about the differences between playing solo, as a duet, and with a full band, with plenty of tunes thrown in. This will be an excellent musical showcase with Eddie Bond, Kirk Sutphin, Billy Hurt, Brennen Ernst, Corrina Logston Stephens, and Jeremy Stephens, and who knows, there may even be an additional guest or two.

NEA-logo-colorThe bonus with this showcase is that we film it, and in a couple of months we'll post and the resulting video to our YouTube channel! This year's videos will be done by Horse Archer Productions. Thanks Chris!

This showcase and video are part of our Music Making in Galax series, sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

 

Register Now

Fiddlers Week - Bluegrass and Oldtime Showcase

August 11, 2016

Bobby LundyFiddlers Week - Bluegrass and Oldtime Showcase
Wednesday, August 10, 1:00 pm

The showcase/discussions during Fiddlers Week are always popular events, so come early to get a good seat!

The Bluegrass and Oldtime showcase and discussion will feature several stellar musicians who will talk about and play oldtime and bluegrass music, including what they are, how they differ, and how they've both changed over the years.  This will be an excellent musical showcase with Kilby Spencer, Peco Watson, Wayne Dye, Dewey Brown, Bobby Lundy, Grace Wilson, and who knows, there may even be an additional guest or two.

NEA-logo-colorThe bonus with this showcase is that we film it, and in a couple of months we'll post and the resulting video to our YouTube channel! This year's videos will be done by Horse Archer Productions. Thanks Chris!

This showcase and video are part of our Music Making in Galax series, sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

 

Register Now

Fiddlers Week - Photography Workshop with Pat Jarrett

August 11, 2016

Pat+JarrettFiddlers Week - Photography Workshop with Pat Jarrett
Thursday, August 11, 1:00 am
Tuition: $10.00
Registration begins August 8 - register at the school in advance or on the day of the event

Pat Jarrett's photos are well know in this area - he is the staff photographer for the Virginia Folklife Program and his work has been featured at Chestnut Creek School of the Arts in previous years. As a matter of fact, his 7 Days in August exhibit can be seen at CCSA while you're in town for the Old Fiddlers' Convention.

Pat will talk about framing and angles, using the light to your advantage, choosing your subject - basically how to make a great photo.. He'll have examples to show as well as advice on how to do it. You can register in advance for this workshop beginning on August 8 by stopping by CCSA or giving us a call, or just come early on the day of the workshop to register when you get here.

Register Now

Fiddlers Week - Intro to Flatfooting workshop

August 12, 2016

julie shepherd-powell 2Fiddlers Week - Intro to Flatfooting workshop with Julie Shepherd-Powell
Friday, August 12, 11:00am, Rex Theater, 113 E Grayson Street.
Tuition: $10:00
All levels
Wear hard-soled shoes, no taps allowed in the Rex Theater

Julie Shepherd-Powell is back to once again teach a flatfooting class as part of our Fiddlers Week events. This is a great way to get started, brush up on your techniques, learn new steps, and get ready to boogie on the dance floor during the Friday and Saturday night Oldtime and Bluegrass band competitions.

NEA-logo-colorJulie will start with a few basic movements and build from there, so everyone will learn something! There will be live music for this workshop.

This workshop is part of our Music Making in Galax series, which is sponsored in part by a grant from the National Foundation for the Arts.

Register Now

Fiddlers Week: Make a Step-a-tune

August 12, 2016

step-a-tuneFiddlers Week: Make a Step-a-tune at the Woodworking Studio
Friday, August 12, 12:00-4:00 pm (actual time to make one is about 1 hour)
Cost: $20 (including materials)
No experience necessary

Come on out to the Woodworking Studio to make your own portable step-a-tune dance board. These dance boards are about 24" x 24" square, are about 1 1/2" off the ground, and the handle to carry them is cut into the sides.

Equipment used includes the chop saw, drill press, band saw, and hand drill - someone will show you how and help you with the construction. Total time to build your own step-a-tune is less than one hour.

NEA-logo-colorIf you've always wanted one, but thought they were too expensive, here's your chance to make your own for only $20! No need to pre-register- just stop by the Woodworking Studio between noon and 4 on Friday.

This workshop is part of our Music Making in Galax Series sponsored in part by a grant from National Endowment for the Arts.

Register Now

Fiddlers Week: Artists Market - Demonstrations

Fiddlers week Artsits MarketFiddlers Week: Artists Market/Demonstrations
Friday, August 12, 9:00am-5:00pm and Saturday, August 13, 10:00am-4:00pm
CCSA Main Building, 100 N Main Street

Stop by Chestnut Creek School of the Arts on Friday and Saturday for the popular Artists Market. Do some shopping for local handmade items and meet artists who will be demonstrating their craft at the school on those days.

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Fiddlers Week: Luthiers Day and Instrument Care Presentation

August 13, 2016

Luthier DayFiddlers Week: Luthiers Day and Instrument Care Presentation
Saturday, August 13, 10:00am-3:00pm
11:00 am: Instrument Care presentation by Bill Anderson

Woodworking Studio, 110 E Oldtown Street

Come on out to meet local luthiers, see their instruments, talk to them about the instrument-building process, and watch them work! Luthiers showcasing at this event include Chris Testerman, Jackson Cunningham, Harrol Blevins, Jeff Sebens, Jayne Henderson, John Hollandsworth, and Bill Anderson.

Bill AndersonAt 11:00 am Bill Anderson, a certified Martin Guitar repair person, will give a presentation on Caring for your Instrument. This is a must attend event if you've ever wondered when to change your strings, whether that buzz on the third fret needs to be looked at, or what can be done to make your instrument sound the way it did when you first bought it.

NEA-logo-colorThis event is part of our Music Making in Galax series, sponsored in part by a grant from National Endowment for the Arts

Register Now

August Woodworking Studio Safety Class

August 15, 2016

Woodworking Studio Safety Class
Monday, August 15, 5:30-8:00pm
Tuition: FREE
Limit 10 per class - pre-registration strongly recommended

The Studio Safety class is required before attending a Woodworking Open Studio session, and is offered the first and third Monday of the month.

Learn the safe operation of tools in in the Woodworking Studio while making a simple project.

Register Now

Yoga Studio with Donna Ellis

Yoga Studio with Donna Ellis
donnayogaWednesdays, August 17 - September 21, 6:00-7:15pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by August 13 for a 10% tuition discount)
All levels

Wear comfortable clothing and bring a mat and other yoga accessories.

Register Now

Pen Turning with Trace Lumpkin

August 20, 2016

Tace Lumpkin turned pens 1Pen Turning with Trace Lumpkin
Saturday, August 20, 9:00am-1:00pm
Tuition: $52.00 (register by August 6 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $10.00 for one pen kit, payable to the instructor. Additional kits will be available.
Age 16+

This class will serve as an excellent introduction to the craft of wood turning. You will learn the basics of operating a lathe and using turning tools to produce two twist-style pens.  Safety will be stressed throughout the class, and you will leave the class with the skills and abilities to pursue other turning projects on your own.

According to the American Association of Woodturners, among the most important precautions for wood turning are the use of face shields, safety glasses, and dust masks. Students in this class need to bring their own face shields. Here's a link to an inexpensive face shield from the Woodturners Catalog.

Register Now

Life Drawing Studio

August 21, 2016

Life Drawing Studio
Sunday, August 21, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $30 per session
Age: 18+
Skill level: All
Bring your own supplies

No matter the medium you prefer to work in there is nothing more gratifying that working from life. Do you miss having a model to draw, paint sculpt from? Come join us for monthly stand-alone sessions with a clothed model. Work in a stress free environment with other like-minded artists as you share ideas and encourage each other. Bring your own supplies, we’ll supply the room and the model.

This is a monthly studio, and it will meet on Sundays, July 17, August 21, September 18, October 16, November 20, and December 18

You must register by the Wednesday prior to the session, August 17.

Register Now

Turning Christmas Ornaments with Trace Lumpkin

Trace Lumpkin turned ornamentsTurning Christmas Ornaments with Trace Lumpkin
Tuesdays, August 23 and 30, 6:00-8:00pm
Tuition: $52.00 (register by 9 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: 5.00
Age 16+
All levels

What makes a Christmas tree even more beautiful and meaningful?  Hand crafted ornaments, that’s what - and it's never too early to get started!

Beginning with stock material, students will learn the fundamentals of safe lathe use while making their own heirloom ornament. Participants will also gain the skills necessary for them to turn additional items on their own.

According to the American Association of Woodturners, among the most important precautions for wood turning are the use of face shields, safety glasses, and dust masks. Students in this class need to bring their own face shields. Here's a link to an inexpensive face shield from the Woodturners Catalog.

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Know your Sewing Machine with Elizabeth Alexander

August 24, 2016

Know your machine - Elizabeth AlexanderKnow your Sewing Machine with Elizabeth Alexander
Wednesday, August 24, 1:00-4:00pm
Tuition: $39.00 (register by August 10 for a 10% tuition discount)
All levels

Take your sewing machine out of the closet and learn to use it!  No matter the make or model of your sewing machine Elizabeth will show you the “ins and outs” so that you can use your dust collector to sew.  Learn to maintain (clean and oil) the machine for better performance, thread both top and bobbin, stitch settings as well as what all those gadgets are used for.

Please bring your sewing machine, its manual (if possible), all of the accessories and attachments, thread, and needles.  It’s time to start sewing again and Elizabeth will get you going!

Register Now

Introduction to Sculpture with Chris Pollins

Chris Pollins sculptureIntroduction to Sculpture with Chris Pollins
Thursdays, August 25 and September 1, 5:30-8:30pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by August 11 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $5.00+ (larger and additional pieces available for additional cost), payable to the instructor
Age 12+ (parents of students under the age of 18 will need to contact the instructor)
All levels

Learn what three dimensional sculpture is all about.  Discover your voice inside three dimensional material.  This class is an introduction to Sculpture and begins with a slide show and lecture about Sculpture, followed by a demonstration then hands on sculpting for each student.

In this class you will develop efficient, proper, and safe use of a minimum number of hand tools. Learn how to choose your material, begin a dialogue with your chosen material, evolve your piece, and enhance the circularity of three-dimensional sculpture.

History, finishes, bases, and multi-media options will be explored.  No experience necessary.

Bbring a sketchbook and any carving tools youy have. Wear closed toe shoes, tie long hair back and bring safety glasses, if you  prefer to use your own own.

Christina Elise Pollins, a sculptor since 1987, earned a BS in philosophy from the University of Michigan and a BFA in sculpture from the Virginia Commonwealth University. Chris also studied at the Corcoran School of Art-D.C. and Parsons-Paris. Chris has taught at VCU, Corcoran, Touchstone, and Jacksonville Center among others. Chris served as Founding Director of Educational Programming at the Jacksonville Center for the Arts from 2000-2008 and has served as Founding Director of Chestnut Creek School of the Arts in Galax, Virginia since its inception in 2008.

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Intro to Watercolor with Ken Hobson

August 27, 2016

Ken Hobson Intro to WatercolorIntro to Watercolor with Ken Hobson
Saturday, August 27, 9:00am-4:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by August 13 for a 10% tuition discount)
Supply list provided
Age 13+
All levels

This will be a fun time to Splash around with watercolors, starting with the Basics:

  • Keeping your paints fresh
  • Knowing how much detail to put in your paintings
  • The importance of Values

Ken will do a number of demos & have a number of handouts along with many of his paintings as examples. This will be a great opportunity to have fun in a relaxed environment with a lot helpful information.

Ken Hobson Intro to Watercolor - materialsSupply List

  • Watercolor Tube Paints (I suggest buying good paints. Off brand paints that come pre-packaged in an assortment of colors seem like a good
    deal, but they are of poor quality & will be very difficult to work with)

    • Cadmium Red
    • Cadmium Yellow
    • Burnt Sienna
    • Sap Green
    • Ultramarine Blue
    • Yellow Ochre
    • Alizarin Crimson
    • Thalo Blue
    • Payne’s Grey
  • Paper: 9” x 12” or 11” x 15” (either size)
    • Strathmore makes a couple of good & reasonably priced spiral bound pads. The Series 400, 140 lbs. (brown cover) is recommended, avoid Series 300 with yellow cover it is not very good.
  • Pencil & eraser
  • Paper towels
  • 3 ring binder to use as a table top easel
  • Brushes (watercolor brushes!): bring in what you have, suggested sizes are #4, #8 & #12
  • Palette (a watercolor palette is ideal, but styrofoam plates with sections will suffice)

Register Now

Stained Glass Roundabout with Nikki Pynn

Nikki Pynn - Intro to Stained glassStained Glass Roundabout with Nikki Pynn
Saturday, August 27, 10:00am-4:00pm, and Saturday, September 10, 9:00am-12:00pm
Tuition: $104.00 (register by August 13 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials:  $5+ depending upon materials used for your project
All Levels
Age 16+
Nikki Pynn - Test the LimitsJoin this facilitated studio time with Nikki Pynn.  Have you always wanted to learn stained glass, or have a project you've always wanted to do?  This is your opportunity!  No experience necessary.  Instructor will be in touch before class to plan attack during class hours.

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Watercolor Landscapes and Dynamic Skies with Ken Hobson

September 3, 2016

 Ken Hobson - landscape and skies 1Watercolor Landscapes and Dynamic Skies with Ken Hobson
Saturday, September 3, 9:00am-4:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by August 20 for a 10% tuition discount)
Material list provided
Age 13+
Some watercolor experience needed

Add beautiful & dramatic skies to your paintings! We will work on landscapes from the Coast to the Mountains - you may bring your own reference or use images provided.

Ken Hobson - landscape and skies 3During this class, we will focus on

  • Values
  • Atmospheric perspective
  • Using the right amount of water to keep your paintings fresh & not overworked
  • Knowing when to STOP, you have enough detail in your work put your brush down!

Ken Hobson - landscape and skies 2Ken will do series of demos & bring in many of his pieces for inspiration. This will be a fun & challenging workshop with a lot of helpful information.

Some experience with watercolors is preferred!

Supply List (suggested - we will work with what you have)

  • Bring in your paints & palette
  • Round Brushes: #4,#8,#12 & larger
  • Paper, 9”x12” or larger (suggest 140lbs), Strathmore makes a good & reasonably priced spiral bound pad (series 400, with a brown cover). The 300 series with yellow cover is not very good.
  • Paper towels
  • Large water container
  • pencil & eraser
  • 3 ring binder to use as a table tip easel

Register Now

Free Flatfooting Workshop at the BRMC

September 5, 2016

Dancing at the Blue Ridge Music CenterIntro to Flatfooting with Marianne Kovatch at the Blue Ridge Music Center
Monday, September 5, 11:30am-12:30pm
Free!

Join us the first Monday of the month in June, July, August and September on the Breezeway at the Blue Ridge Music Center, milepost 214 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, for an Introduction to Flatfooting. We'll start at 11:30 learning a few steps before the start of the Mountain Midday Music. At noon the Buck Mountain Band will begin kicking up their tunes so you can practice what you've been learning. Marianne will stick around until 12:30 to teach a couple more steps, call a square dance, or just have fun dancing with you to this fabulous old-time band.

No preregistration is needed.

This class is part of our Music Making in Galax series supported in part by the National Endowment of the Arts, and is co-sponsored by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation.

Register Now

Make a Rustic Caned Stool

September 10, 2016

Make a Rustic Caned Stool with Clifton Jones and Michael Dees
Saturday, September 10, 9:00am-1:00pm amd Sunday, September 11, 10:00am - 4:00pm
Tuition: $117.00 (register by August 27 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $12.50 payable to Clifton Jones and $10.00 to Michael Dees
All levels

In this class you will make rustic footstool with a hand-woven cane top, and gain the knowledge to make more!  On the first day, furniture maker Clifton Jones will teach you how to make the frame for a rustic stool using natural branches, and on day two, chair caner Michael Dees will guide you through the process of putting a woven cane seat on your stool.

This is a great opportunity to learn from two instructors who are not only masters of their respective crafts, but great fun to be around and learn from as well!

Register Now

Stained Glass Tree Topper with Nikki Pynn

September 10, 2016

christmas tree topperStained Glass Tree Topper with Nikki Pynn
Saturday, September 10, 1:00-4:00pm
Tuition: $39.00 (register by August 28 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $12.00 (payable to instructor)
Age 16+
All levels

Make your own Tree Topper this Holiday season that can also be used as a centerpiece.  This class is a great  introduction to the fundamentals of stained glass for any age.

Register Now

Dulcimer with Wayne Jordan

Dulcimer with Wayne Jordan
Mondays, September 12-October 3, 6:00-7:00pm
Tuition: $52.00 (register by August 29 for a 10% tuition discount)
Level: Beginner to advanced beginner
Age 16+

Whether you are just starting out, or need a refresher after not playing for a while, this four-week class is for you!

Wayne will also be starting up a Dulcimer Club here at CCSA that will meet the second Monday of the month at 6:00 pm, beginning October 10 (after the class ends).

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Clay Clocks with Ann Childress

Ceramic Clocks Ann ChildressIt's About Time - Make a Ceramic Clock with Ann Childress
Wednesday, September 14, 6:00-7:00pm; Thursday, September 15 and 22, 6:00-8:30pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by August 31 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $8.00 to instructor (for clock mechanism), $5.00 to CCSA (clay fee)
Level: Beginner
Age 14+

Make a great clock for your home or office in this fun, 2 week class.  Learn to use a variety of surface design techniques including stamping, sprigs & under glazing.  Clocks provide a great 'canvas' for capturing meaningful textures (grandmother's lace, military buttons, etc.

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Make a Mountain Dulcimer with Jeff Sebens

Jeff Sebens DulcimerMake a Mountain Dulcimer with Jeff Sebens
Saturday, September 17, 9:00am-6:00pm; Wednesdays, September 21, 28, and October 12, 5:30-8:30pm
Tuition: $207.00 (register by 9/3/2016 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $100.00 (payable to instructor)
sanding the dulcimerAll levels
Age 18+

In this class you will be making a teardrop-shaped dulcimer with a walnut back and sides and you can choose from redwood or spruce for the top wood. The fretboards are walnut and will have a 6 1/2 fret on them, and we can add a 1 1/2  fret as well, if anyone wants that. The sound holes can either be Jeff's traditional heart shape, or you can help design a pattern for your instrument. If you want to do a custom shape, contact Jeff beforehand and to work out the details ahead of time. We will install high quality Grover tuners on them and you can set it up with three or four strings.

clamping the top of the dulcimerThere will be some work for you to do on your instruments some weeks between classes, such as sanding or applying finish, so be prepared to spend time outside of class doing this work - Jeff will give you the supplies you need to complete these assignments. The cost of the supplies is $100 and that can be paid to Jeff on the first day of class.

Student posing with her dulcimerThis class is part of the Music Making in Galax series sponsored in part by National Endowment for the Arts.

Register Now

Make Your Own Marbled Paper

September 17, 2016

Make Your Own Marbled Paper with Ann Murray
Saturday,. September 17, 9:00am-4:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by September 3 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: TBD, payable to instructor
Age 14+

Register Now

Piedmont Blues Guitar with Lightin Wells

September 17, 2016

Lightnin WellsPiedmont Blues Guitar with Lightin Wells
Saturday, September 17, 10:00am-4:00 pm
Tuition: $65.00 (register by September 3 for a 10% tuition discount)
Age 16+
Skill Level: Intermediate

Come join Lightnin Wells for this workshop in Fingerpicking Piedmont Blues guitar. This is an intermediate workshop, which means that you should know chords and be able to pick a little, but you can be new to the blues. More information to come about this workshop.

Mike "Lightnin'" Wells breathes new life into the vintage tunes of the 1920s and depression era America employing various appropriate stringed instruments in a dynamic style which he has developed in over thirty years of performing experience. Raised in eastern North Carolina, Wells learned to play harmonica as a young child and taught himself to play the guitar as he developed a strong interest in traditional blues and folk music.

With his experience, knowledge and well-honed performance skills, Lightnin' Wells has established himself at the forefront of the traditional blues revival. His musical style is personal and energetic yet remains true to the original root form. His goal is to entertain and educate using a variety of sources, influences and techniques to express his dedication, respect and pleasure in presenting this unique American art form. Wrote one recent reviewer; "Whether you look for to performers for inspiration, education, virtuosity, or sheer entertainment, Lightnin' Wells delivers all the above, every single time".

Register Now

Concert with Lightnin Wells

September 17, 2016

lightnin wells with triconeConcert with Lightnin Wells
Saturday, September 17, 7:00 pm
Admission: $10.00 (available at the door, or online beginning September 6)

Come join us for a house-style concert in our lobby. These informal concerts are always entertaining, informative, and offer a glimpse into the life and travels of the performer.

Mike "Lightnin'" Wells breathes new life into the vintage tunes of the 1920s and depression era America employing various appropriate stringed instruments in a dynamic style which he has developed in over thirty years of performing experience. Raised in eastern North Carolina, Wells learned to play harmonica as a young child and taught himself to play the guitar as he developed a strong interest in traditional blues and folk music.

Lightnin' produced the first commercial recordings of the N.C. blues veterans Big Boy Henry, Algia Mae Hinton and George Higgs. He has traveled and performed extensively with these musicians and has documented their backgrounds and musical histories for future generations. He is also a life-long student and devotee of the pioneering performers in the piedmont blues tradition which once thrived in the Carolinas, including such artists as Blind Boy Fuller, Rev. Gary Davis and Elizabeth Cotton; deceased musicians whose influence seems only to grow with time. He also spent time with legendary Fries musician Jimmy Arnold.

Lightnin' remains an insatiable student and researcher, studying the various forms of American roots music from bygone eras. He plays a number of instruments besides the guitar including the harmonica, ukulele, mandolin and banjo. He has taught blues guitar at most of the leading "Blues Weeks" sponsored by universities and teaching organizations throughout the country. He served for ten years as a board member for the Music Maker Relief Foundation which assists elderly blues and old-time musicians to meet their basic needs and continues to serve this organization in an advisory capacity.

With his experience, knowledge and well-honed performance skills, Lightnin' Wells has established himself at the forefront of the traditional blues revival. His musical style is personal and energetic yet remains true to the original root form. His goal is to entertain and educate using a variety of sources, influences and techniques to express his dedication, respect and pleasure in presenting this unique American art form. Wrote one recent reviewer; "Whether you look for to performers for inspiration, education, virtuosity, or sheer entertainment, Lightnin' Wells delivers all the above, every single time".

Register Now

Life Drawing Studio

September 18, 2016

Life Drawing Studio
Sunday, September 18, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $30 per session
Age: 18+
Skill level: All
Bring your own supplies

No matter the medium you prefer to work in there is nothing more gratifying that working from life. Do you miss having a model to draw, paint sculpt from? Come join us for monthly stand-alone sessions with a clothed model. Work in a stress free environment with other like-minded artists as you share ideas and encourage each other. Bring your own supplies, we’ll supply the room and the model.

This is a monthly studio, and it will meet on Sundays, July 17, August 21, September 18, October 16, November 20, and December 18

You must register by the Wednesday prior to the session, September 14.

Register Now

Silversmithing Studio Day with Karin Carlson-Muncy

September 18, 2016

Silversmithing Studio Day with Karin Carlson-Muncy
Sunday, September 18, 10:00am-5:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by Spetember 11 for a 10% tuition discount)
Age 18+
Skill level: must be at least intermediate level
Materials: TBD, based on project

This is the perfect opportunity for former Silversmithing students to bring project ideas they wish to work on.  If you need studio time, supplies, and hands-on assistance from Karin this is the class.  Karin will bring supplies for purchase so that you can begin making something special for loved ones (including yourself!).

To register for this class you must be at the intermediate level working with silver as there will not be formal instruction, just lots of time and expert guidance and advice from Karin.  Let’s put those new skills to work!

Register Now

Jewelry Soldering Studio Day with Karin Carlson-Muncy

September 18, 2016

Jewelry Soldering Studio Day with Karin Carlson-Muncy
Sunday, November 13, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by September 4 for a 10% tuition discount)
Age 18+
Skill level:  must be at least at intermediate level
Materials:  TBD based on students' need in class

This is the perfect opportunity for former Soldering students to bring project ideas they wish to work on.  If you need studio time, supplies, and hands-on assistance from Karin this is the class.  Karin will bring supplies for purchase so that you can begin making something special for loved ones (including yourself!).

To register for this class you must be at the intermediate level working with silver as there will not be formal instruction, just lots of time and expert guidance and advice from Karin.  Let’s put those new skills to work!

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September Woodworking Studio Safety Class

September 19, 2016

Woodworking Studio Safety Class
Monday, September 19, 5:30-8:00pm
Tuition: FREE
Limit 10 per class - pre-registration strongly recommended

The Studio Safety class is required before attending a Woodworking Open Studio session, and is offered the first and third Monday of the month.

Learn the safe operation of tools in in the Woodworking Studio while making a simple project.

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Tiny Card Wallet with Elizabeth Alexander

October 1, 2016

Tiny Card Wallet Elizabeth AlexanderTiny Card Wallet with Elizabeth Alexander
Saturday, Oct. 1,  12:00-3:00 pm
Tuition: $39.00 (register by September 17 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $6.00 for complete kit (fabric, interfacing, and snap), payable to instructor
Level: Advanced beginner on up (must be able to use a sewing machine)

Running an errand and don’t have time to grab your big bag?  You need Elizabeth’s Tiny Card Wallet which holds everything thing you need and nothing you don’t.  Learn to sew this small wallet with 3 pockets big enough for credit cards and cash.  You will cut, interface, and assemble this cute little wallet.  You will also learn how to attach a snap on the front for the closure.

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Facilitated Studio Time with Ken Hobson

October 8, 2016

Ken Hobson - facilitated studio 1
Facilitated Watercolor Studio with Ken Hobson

Saturday, October 8, 9:am-4:00pm
Tuition: $78.00 (register by September 24 for a 10% tuition discount)
Bring your own supplies
Some watercolor experience needed
Age 13+

Ken Hobson - facilitated studio 2Bring pieces you are working on or getting started on, or pieces you have completed. Ken will help with feedback and direction.

  • Ken will do a variety of demos to help you with difficult areas
  • He will also talk about knowing when you have put enough detail in your work to tell the story...“less is more!”

Ken will bring in many of his paintings for inspiration.

This will be a fun, no pressure workshop with a lot of helpful information. Some experience with watercolor is suggested!

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Build a Rustic Stool or Bench with Clifton Jones

October 8, 2016

Clifton Jones rustic stools
Build a Rustic Stool or Bench with Clifton Jones

Saturday, October 8, 9:00am-1:00pm
Tuition: $52.00 (register by September 24 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $22.50 (payable to instructor)
All levels
Age 18+

Clifton Jones rustic stools in progressYou might want to sit down for this!  Cliff Jones will be offering a class on how to build a rustic stool or bench.

Students will build their piece with lumber slabs and cured sticks.  In the building of the stool/bench, students will learn how to shape seats, make tenons on sticks, and assemble the finished piece.  This class will also include a discussion on design and material considerations so that students will be able to make more seating on their own upon completion of the class.  Each student will complete one bench or stool in the course of this class.

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Color Pencil and Charcoal on Mylar with Leslie Gregg

October 8, 2016

Lauren and the FlutterbysCreative Techniques in Color Pencil and Charcoal on Mylar with Leslie Gregg
Saturday October 8, 10:00am-4:00pm
Tuition: $65.00 (register by September 24 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: $12.00 payable to instructor (see list below); bring your own colored pencils
Age 16+
All Levels

Students will learn how to utilize colored pencil and charcoal to create realistic images on Mylar.  This is a fun and easy technique to learn.  No experience necessary.

Please bring colored pencils and an electric eraser, if you have one. Additional materials provided by the instructor ($12.00 material fee):

  • Professional drafting mylar
  • White board for the base
  • Charcoal pencil set
  • 6 color pencils
  • Kneaded eraser
  • Small sharpener
  • Sponge
  • Small rubbing squares
  • Paint brush
  • Graphite
  • Gloves

Leslie will also bring a can of workable fixative, tape, and a couple of hand held electric erasers that can be shared (these are only used sparingly).

Leslie Roberts Gregg grew up in Long Shop, Virginia. A graduate of Blacksburg High School, she received her degree in Art from Virginia Tech. She has a history in biomedical and commercial art, but her love of working with people led to the specialty of fine art portraiture with hundreds of paintings to her credit. Her commissioned works of art hang in public and private collections throughout the United States. Leslie has always been a passionate fan of Appalachia and the people who make it special. She resides with her family on a farm in the Catawba Valley.

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Fall Plein Air Day

October 15, 2016

Fall Plein Air Day at Mt. Vale Vineyards
3222 Meadow Creek Rd, Galax, VA
Saturday, October 15 (rain or shine)
Painting 8:00am-3:00pm
Reception begins at 3:00 pm
Art Show begins around 3:30 with Wet-Paint Sale and Auction to follow
Artists participation fee: $25 (register by Monday, October 10, for a $5 discount) 

The public is invited to come join us for a lovely day at Mt. Vale Vineyards to enjoy the view, sip on a glass of wine, and enjoy a day filled with art. And at the end of the day, you can purchase the painting you saw come to life as you watched the artists work.

Plein Air artists paint outdoors, working quickly to capture the light and complete their work in one day. Artists work in several mediums including oil, acrylic, watercolor, and pastels, and some complete multiple paintings during the paint-out.

Everyone is invited to paint - beginners and advanced alike. The fee for participating is $25, which includes lunch, a glass of wine, and inclusion in the art show.

You don't have to paint to join us - the public is invited to come to this event for free to enjoy a glass of wine, stroll the grounds, and watch the artists paint in the morning and early afternoon, and stay for the reception and art show later in the day.

In the afternoon there will be a wine and cheese reception, at 3:00 with music, and wine and cheese for purchase. The art show begins after the formal judging, around 3:30, at which time the People's Choice judging begins. There will be a sale of the work created that day after the People's Choice judging has ended. This event is free and open to the public.  

Artist registration begins at 8:00 am. The $25 registration fee lunch and a glass of wine. For the art show and sale, please bring a frame for your work, and a display easel if you have one. Prizes will awarded during the reception (1st-$150, 2nd-$100, 3rd-$50, judges honorable mention, People's Choice, and other special prizes), followed by the sale. All sales of that day's artwork will go through Chestnut Creek School of the Arts. Please note that CCSA will keep 20% of the auction/sale price.

Artists also have the opportunity to bring some of their existing work for sale. Please bring your own displays. These sales will be handled directly by the artists.

This event is sponsored by Chestnut Creek School of the Arts, City Gallery of Fine Arts, and Mt. Vale Vineyards.

Artists may pre-register for this event. Register by Monday, October 10 for a $5 discount.

Register Now

Life Drawing Studio

October 16, 2016

Life Drawing Studio
Sunday, October 16, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $30 per session
Age: 18+
Skill level: All
Bring your own supplies

No matter the medium you prefer to work in there is nothing more gratifying that working from life. Do you miss having a model to draw, paint sculpt from? Come join us for monthly stand-alone sessions with a clothed model. Work in a stress free environment with other like-minded artists as you share ideas and encourage each other. Bring your own supplies, we’ll supply the room and the model.

This is a monthly studio, and it will meet on Sundays, July 17, August 21, September 18, October 16, November 20, and December 18

You must register by the Wednesday prior to the session, October 12.

Register Now

Intermediate Mandolin with Herschel Sizemore

Kyle Green | The Roanoke Times 2/14/2012 Herschel Sizemore (pictured here playing the mandolin in his Roanoke, Virginia home), one of the countryÕs great mandolin players, just recovered from treatment for cancer of the tonsil. His wife is still in treatment for breast cancer, but is almost through with that. There will be a big benefit show for them on Sunday at Roanoke Performing Arts Theatre, with Del McCoury, the Seldom Scene, Sammy Shelor and tons more playing.

photo by Kyle Green | The Roanoke Times

Intermediate Mandolin with Herschel Sizemore
Saturday, October 22, 10:00am-4:00pm, and Sunday, October 23, 10:00am-4:00pm
Concert Saturday, October 22, 7:00pm
Tuition: $225 (register by October 8 for a 10% tuition discount)
Level: Intermediate to Advanced
Age 15+

When he was eight years old, Herschel’s parents took him to see Bill Monroe perform at the Grand Ole Opry, and he was instantly hooked. Herschel would go on to become one of the first mandolin players to break distinctly from Monroe’s style, which had long dominated bluegrass mandolin playing, charting a course that would profoundly influence nearly every prominent player since, including David Grisman, Sam Bush, Doyle Lawson, and Chris Thile.

Looking at Herschel Sizemore's music career is a bit like reading a who's who list of classic bluegrass! In 1957 he began playing mandolin with the Dixie Gentlemen for 8 years, moving on to play with Jimmie Martin until 1968, when he left to start the Shenendoah Cut-Ups with fiddler Tater Tate and flatpicker Wesley Golding. Over the next several years he also played with the Country Grass, the Del McCoury Band, the Dixie Pals, the Boys from Shiloh, and the Bluegrass Cardinals. Today he is known for his original tunes as well as his stellar playing.

Herschel Sizemore and Mike Walker (Photo by Pat Jarrett)

Herschel Sizemore and Mike Walker (Photo by Pat Jarrett)

In this workshop, Herschel will teach tunes and techniques, and also emphasize rhythm. He will be accompanied/assisted in the workshop by Mike Walker.

This is a wonderful opportunity to learn from a master musician!

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Concert with Herschel Sizemore

October 22, 2016

Herschel Sizemore and Mike Walker (Photo by Pat Jarrett)

Herschel Sizemore and Mike Walker (Photo by Pat Jarrett)

Concert with Herschel Sizemore
Saturday, October 22, 7:00pm
Ticket price: $15.00

Come on out to see bluegrass legend Herschel Sizemore in concert. Herschel is also known as one of the first post-Monroe mandolin players to develop his own style.

He'll be accompanied by Mike Walker.

Register Now

Book Making - Long-stitch Binding with Ann Murray

Book Making: Long-stitch Binding with Ann Murray
Saturday and Sunday, October 29 & 30, 9:00 am-4:00pm
Tuition: $156.00 (register by October 15 for a 10% tuition discount)
Materials: TBD (payable to instructor)

Ann Murray offers unique handmade books, each created with high quality materials and attention to the intended purpose and/or recipient. "The focus of my work is on creating functional items that are pleasing to both eye and hand.  I want my books to be both visually admired and 'petted' because they feel good in one's hand.  The form of the book will enhance the use - whether to read or to write in - to which it is put.  I put creative energy into my books in such a way that their next owners/users will connect positively with that energy.  "

Register Now

This is a series. Please select any of the dates below to register.

Concert with Natalya Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller

November 5, 2016

Zoe-and-CloydConcert with Natalya Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller
Saturday, November 5, 7:00pm
Ticket price $15.00

Zoe & Cloyd spring from deep roots in American music. Founding members of the acclaimed Americana trio, Red June and long-time veterans of the Asheville, NC music scene, Natalya Zoe Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller shifted gears to their duet project after the birth of their daughter in early 2015. Their debut recording, Equinox, released in April 2015, features original and traditional repertoire spanning bluegrass, old-time and folk and showcases the elegant simplicity of two instruments and two voices. The album met with high acclaim in publications such as No Depression and Bluegrass Unlimited, among others. Their banner year continued with a 1st place win at the Duo Contest at the prestigious FreshGrass Festival in North Adams, Massachusetts. Look for the couple in 2016 at MerleFest, Music City Roots, and more!

Register Now

Bluegrass Harmonies with Natalya Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller

November 5, 2016

zoe and cloydBluegrass Harmonies with Natalya Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller
Saturday, November 5, 2:00-4:00pm
Tuition: $32.00 (register by October 22 for a 10% tuition discount)
All levels
Age 16+

Natalya Zoe Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller spring from deep roots in American music. Founding members of the acclaimed Americana trio, Red June and long-time veterans of the Asheville, NC music scene. In this workshop they will focus on traditional bluegrass harmonies from the early days of bluegrass. Bring your singing partner, or come by yourself to harmonize with others in the class!

John is a North Carolina native and the grandson of pioneering bluegrass fiddler Jim Shumate. With a foundation in traditional bluegrass and old-time Appalachian music he is well known for his haunting mountain voice as well as his instrumental prowess and award-winning songwriting.

Natalya is an accomplished fiddler in a variety of styles as well as an inspiring singer and songwriter. Natalya spent many years fine-tuning her bluegrass and old-time fiddling with some of the country’s top traditional musicians.

Natalya and John are both experienced teachers and are extremely knowledgeable about the context and history of traditional Appalachian Music. They have presented workshops in classrooms and festivals all across the country. John teaches Applied Music lessons, String Band and Songwriting at Warren Wilson College and Natalya, a highly regarded fiddle instructor, is currently working toward a Master’s in Appalachian Music at ASU.

Register Now

Life Drawing Studio

November 20, 2016

Life Drawing Studio
Sunday, November 20, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $30 per session
Age: 18+
Skill level: All
Bring your own supplies

No matter the medium you prefer to work in there is nothing more gratifying that working from life. Do you miss having a model to draw, paint sculpt from? Come join us for monthly stand-alone sessions with a clothed model. Work in a stress free environment with other like-minded artists as you share ideas and encourage each other. Bring your own supplies, we’ll supply the room and the model.

This is a monthly studio, and it will meet on Sundays, July 17, August 21, September 18, October 16, November 20, and December 18

You must register by the Wednesday prior to the session.

Register Now

Life Drawing Studio

December 18, 2016

Life Drawing Studio
Sunday, December 18, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $30 per session
Age: 18+
Skill level: All
Bring your own supplies

No matter the medium you prefer to work in there is nothing more gratifying that working from life. Do you miss having a model to draw, paint sculpt from? Come join us for monthly stand-alone sessions with a clothed model. Work in a stress free environment with other like-minded artists as you share ideas and encourage each other. Bring your own supplies, we’ll supply the room and the model.

This is a monthly studio, and it will meet on Sundays, July 17, August 21, September 18, October 16, November 20, and December 18

You must register by the Wednesday prior to the session, December 14.

Register Now

Withdrawal/Cancellation policy

In case of student withdrawal, tuition less 20% is refundable up to two weeks prior to class. Tuition cannot be refunded if student withdraws less than two weeks prior to class.

The class may be cancelled by the CCSA due to low enrollment, severe weather, illness, or other reasons. In cases where the class is cancelled by CCSA, payments are fully refundable.


Are you looking for Continuing Education Credits (CEUs)? You can take any of our classes for Wytheville Community College CEU's. You can earn 0.1 CEUs for each hour of class time. The fee is $15. Please contact us to register for this option by calling 276-236-3500. 


Inclement Weather Policy

Morning and Afternoon Classes and Events: If Galax School District is closed due to inclement weather, daytime classes and events are also cancelled.

Evening and Weekend Classes and Events: Cancellation is at the discretion of the instructor or CCSA personnel based on road and weather conditions. CCSA or the instructor will attempt to contact you using the contact email and/or phone numbers you have given us when registering for the class. Notification of cancellation will also be posted on the CCSA and/or Oldtown Pottery Facebook pages.

If a class meeting is one of a series, the class will be rescheduled. If the class is a one-day workshop, it will be cancelled and you will be refunded.


PayPal allows you to make an individual credit card purchase without an account.

After confirming your registration, click on the "PayPal" button and choose the "Don't have a PayPal account?" option at the bottom of the screen where you can enter a one-time credit card payment.


Lodging Information

Looking for a place to stay while you are taking a class with us? Click here for a list of area hotels, motels, cabins, and inns. Some of them offer discounts for students taking classes at Chestnut Creek School of the Arts!