Final preparations for the 18th Annual North American Sundial Society (NASS) Conference held this week in Asheville include installation of a new Hours Since Sunrise sundial on the wall at the Sunny Point Café. Local NASS conference hosts, Alice io Oglesby and Hugh Munro, designed the sundial specifically for this location. “We thought it fun to have a sundial that indicated how long the sun has been up, rather then the time,” said Oglesby. “Hugh and I enjoy designing sundials that are not what people expect when they think ‘sundial’,” she continued. Ms. Oglesby and Mr. Munro became members of NASS at the urging of Oglesby’s father who is a long time member.
The North American Sundial Society (NASS) is an association of people from a wide variety of disciplines who are interested in the study, development, history, and preservation of sundials. NASS formed over 15 years ago to bring together sundial enthusiasts from North American and around the world. The Annual Conference is a chance for members to exchange ideas and learn more about the history, design and constructions of sundials, as well as socialize with other dialists.
On Friday, August 17, conference attendees will take a bus tour of local sundials including the newly installed Sunny Point Café sundial and an Analemmatic Sundial at the Biltmore estate Kitchen Garden that was installed by Oglesby, her father, Mac Oglesby, and Munro in 2007. The Kitchen Garden dial features seasonal illustrations painted with concrete stain by Oglesby, numbers created by Doc Cudd, Biltmore’s resident blacksmith, along with stonework and plantings. The group will also travel to downtown Burnsville, NC to view the large Quilt Block Sundial that is also a part of the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina.
As part of their mission to expand opportunities for people to learn about sundials, NASS is donating two books on the topic to the Buncombe County Library system through the West Asheville branch.
The group will be impactful on the local community in several other ways. Through a partnership with the Asheville Grown Business Alliance, NASS conference attendees will be provided with a Go Local card providing discounts to local businesses. Oglesby also sourced items for gift baskets locally, including custom made sun soaps from Essential Journeys, custom sun shaped chocolates from The Chocolate Fetish and other local goodies all presented in handmade cloth bags from Roly Poly Crafts.
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