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McKinney Center

Our Classes

Conversations That Matter October 2021


with Skye McFarland

Calendar Oct 14, 2021 at 7 pm

The system will ask for your birthdate- you can put any year in that you would like, this is a built-in part of our registration because we have kids' classes, we apologize for the inconvenience.

“Conversations that Matter” is a monthly online series from the McKinney Center. In each “Conversation” two local guests will explore their own culture and perspective, and talk to each other about what makes them unique, discover their similarities, and explore their differences. They will look at where their lives might intersect personally and in the community. The goal of each “Conversation that Matters” is for guests and participants to hear real stories, from real neighbors.

The next event in this series will feature Nancy Kavanaugh and Ashley Cavender. This conversation will be moderated by McKinney Center Advisory Board Members and volunteers, Michelle Treece and Katelyn Yarbrough. It will take place via Zoom on October 14, at 7pm.

Nancy Kavanaugh is a well-known resident of Jonesborough, TN, taking an active role in many community organizations. Storytelling brought Nancy to Jonesborough more than two decades ago, after she spent a career as an executive for General Motors Assembly Division and Lockheed Martin Corporation. Bringing her organizational skills to Jonesborough, she served as the Executive Director of the National Storytelling Network from 2000-2005. Today, she volunteers with many different groups including Barter Theatre, Friends of the Library, Heritage Alliance, and the McKinney Center. In 2018, Nancy organized the “Wild Women of Jonesborough,” a non-profit that has raised more than $23,000 to support unmet needs in the Jonesborough Community.

Ashley is an ETSU Alumni and has been in the area for several years. She is passionate about community organizing, local food, and sustainability; she served through AmeriCorps with Jonesborough Locally Grown and is most recently working with One Acre Cafe feeding food with dignity to the community regardless of their means. You will most likely find her at the Nolichuckey river with her Jack Russell, Banjo in the summer months, and hiking across East TN in the fall and winter. When she is not volunteering in the community she is traveling abroad and never missing the opportunity to learn a new skill or travel to a new country. 

This monthly series is inspired by the Diversity & Equity Subcommittee at the McKinney Center, and their desire to highlight the experiences of all voices in Washington County, Tennessee, with an intention to include marginalized groups. By showcasing these conversations, the Diversity & Equity subcommittee hopes to open doors to new ideas and perspectives amongst our very own neighbors. Questions such as, “What was your experience in grade-school and how did that make you feel?” or, “Have you experienced exclusion or racism?” For many of us the answers are different and unique. The McKinney Center believes it is time to talk about our experiences and share them.

There is value in uplifting these stories so that we may learn from one another. Then, after hearing from one another our moderators and guest conversationalists will give insight on how to move forward.

Will run

Kids N Clay


with Kara Bledsoe

Calendar Oct 16, 2021 at 9 am, runs for 4 weeks

Grades 2-5

In this course, students will be exposed to a basic introduction to ceramic techniques designed for elementary school aged children. This class will create fun imaginative pieces which will be a mixture of decorative and functional items.  

9:00 - 10:30am, Saturdays, October 16, 23, 30, November 6.

Will run

Young Potters


with Kara Bledsoe

Calendar Oct 16, 2021 at 11 am, runs for 6 weeks

Grades 5-8

This is a pottery class for older elementary and middle school age children. In this course, students will create fun decorative and functional projects and have the opportunity to explore different techniques for working with clay including the pottery wheel. 

11:00 - 12:30 pm - Saturdays, October 16, 23, 30, November 6, 13, 20.

Payment plan available: $25 deposit plus 1 payment of $92.00, paid every two weeks.

Will run

Glass Fusion - Christmas Plate Workshop


with Karen Hitchcock

Calendar Oct 20, 2021 at 6 pm

Ages 14- Adult

In this 2-hour glass fusion workshop each student will make an eight-inch round plate of their own design.   It will look great on a table or hung on a wall for decoration. 

6:00 - 8:00 pm, Wednesday, October 20.

Potters Wheel Series Level 2


with Jess Parks

Calendar Oct 20, 2021 at 6 pm, runs for 6 weeks


This intermediate level pottery class is designed to further students’ throwing skills on the potter’s wheel. In this course, students will develop more complex forms and learn new trimming techniques. Each class will have a different demonstration to show unique ways of making functional forms. Must have prior wheel experience. 

6:00 - 8:00 pm - Wednesdays, October 20, 27, November 3, 10, 17, December 1.

Payment plan available: $25 deposit plus 2 payments of $81.33, paid weekly. Final payment of $81.34.

Will run

Garden Mushrooms Decorating and Design


with Jess Parks

Calendar Oct 23, 2021 at 1 pm

Grade 9- Adult

During this one-day workshop, students will explore their creative side by decorating and personalizing their own clay mushrooms for their garden or home. Students will receive two pre-constructed clay mushrooms that they design and decorate using stamps, stencils, and other tools.  All student work will be finished with a beautiful glaze and fired to perfection.  Fired projects may be picked up two weeks after class.

1:00 - 4:00 pm, Saturday, October 23.

Daytime Throwing - Intermediate


with Kara Bledsoe

Calendar Oct 27, 2021 at 10:30 am, runs for 6 weeks

Grade 6- Adult

This wheel throwing class is for older school aged children and adults. Classes will focus on creating basic traditional pottery using the potter’s wheel. Over the six-week course participants will create more complex forms on the potters wheel. Students will also learn pottery terms and the firing process. Some throwing experience is required.  There are only 6 seats available in this class to ensure that students have as much wheel time as possible.

10:30 am - 12:30 pm, Wednesdays, October 27, November 3, 10, 17, December 1, 8.

Full Course

Zentangle Method of Drawing - Introduction


with Kay Grogg

Calendar Oct 30, 2021 at 10 am

Grade 9- Adult

The Zentangle Method of Drawing, is an easy way to learn an art form that is FUN and RELAXING! Beautiful images can be created by drawing structured patterns. As you become engrossed in the process, your focus becomes, “Zen” like and relaxed, resulting in individually unique masterpieces.  Students must complete this class or have previous Zentangle experience before taking advanced Zentangle classes.

10:00 am - 12:30 pm, Saturday, October 30.

Full Course

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