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Community concert to preserve past of Scott’s Run, set example for future

Songs of Scott's RunThere’s seven miles of stream that meets the Monongahela River just north of Morgantown called Scott’s Run. Booming coal and glass industries brought prosperity to the integrated communities there in the 1920s, and the Great Depression brought fame as the area became the poster child for the relief efforts of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Now, community partners are helping tell “The Songs and Stories of Scott’s Run” to celebrate the past and examine the future. 

“It’s a beautiful story of a community that had it right when so many others had it wrong,” said Eve Faulkes, professor and coordinator of graphic design at West Virginia University. “We’re talking about a community where people from 19 countries and the deep South came to live and work before the Civil Rights Movement even began to take shape.” 

Faulkes and her students have been involved with the community effort to preserve the history of Scott’s Run for four years, designing exhibitions, books and interactive displays for the Scott’s Run Museum and Trail. 

“This is a great opportunity for my students, especially given how close the Scott’s Run area is to campus, to do something to give back to the community here,” Faulkes said. “Many of these students are now alumni, and they are still interested in Scott’s Run. Students see how important their work is for the community who is equally important for them. Gratitude is reciprocal.”

The student’s latest project is a CD cover for the recording of The Songs and Stories of Scott’s Run Concert that will be held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 1, at the Metropolitan Theatre in Morgantown. Doors will open at 6 p.m. and exhibits from the museum will be on display in the lobby.

“This concert gives you a musical sense of what it was like to live in Scott’s Run,” Faulkes said. “There is a great mix of gospel, blues, and rock and roll. Two of the songs by Chris Haddox are written just for this area, so it’s really an insider’s view. There will also be audience participation—come prepared for fun.” 

Boys in Scott's Run

Faulkes will narrate the concert with projected imagery, and performers include Al Anderson, the Flying Colors, Soup Camel, Chris Haddox and Donna Weems. Soup Camel as part of the celebration of Scott’s Run will also perform a free concert at the Hazel Ruby McQuain Amphitheatre at 6:30 pm on June 2. 

According to Faulkes, the concert is a great learning opportunity in the present cultural climate.

“Our society questions the place of immigrants and it’s a scary and uneasy time for many,” Faulkes said. “We can look to Scott’s Run and see how they accepted all kinds of people nearly 100 years ago and learn from that. This is a look at their story of acceptance and courage.”

The concerts are presented in partnership with the West Virginia University College of Creative Arts, Scott’s Run Museum and Trail, Arts Monongahela, the West Virginia Division of Culture and History and the Morgantown Board of Parks and Recreation.

“Scott’s Run has a rich history that has contributed to both the heritage and future of our community, state and nation,” said Arts Monongahela President Jack Thompson. “It deserves to have its story told.” 

Tickets are $5.00 each and may be purchased at the door, online at Ticketmaster, at WVU Box Offices located in the Creative Arts Center and the Mountainlair, or by calling (304) 293-SHOW.