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Museum party features kickin bluegrass, finger-lickin BBQ

RALEIGH — The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences hosts “Bluegrass & Barbeque” on Saturday, April 10 from 7 to 10 pm. Tap your toes to live bluegrass music from the Kickin Grass Band, indulge in delicious barbecue from Kings Restaurant, and bid on vacation getaways and other interesting items at the Silent Auction. All proceeds benefit the Educators of Excellence Fund, a Museum program that provides unique continuing education opportunities for science teachers across the state.

These opportunities include the Educators of Excellence Institutes, Museum-led trips to Yellowstone National Park, Belize (Central America) and Ecuador (South America) that allow teachers to experience the natural world first-hand. The goal is to empower educators by improving their teaching skills and inspiring them to remain committed to the profession of teaching as they learn about our state’s many ecological connections to the rest of the world. Since its inception in 1987, more than 350 educators have been a part of the program, ultimately reaching more than 200,000 North Carolina students.

The music of Raleigh’s own Kickin Grass Band has been praised by the News & Observer as “a delightful display of hard-driving, lyrically nuanced bluegrass.” Their songs have caught the attention of the Associated Press, as well as Bluegrass and Americana publications, and have received international radio airplay and placement on the Roots Music Radio Chart. Kings Restaurant of Kinston serves up the “Best Barbecue in the East” (Tarheel Magazine) and even mails their ribs across the country, earning them “Best Shipped BBQ Ribs” (Maxim Magazine).

Auction items include a walk-on part in an upcoming episode of “Exploring North Carolina,” UNC-TV’s nature series hosted by Tom Earnhardt; vacation stays on the Outer Banks, Pine Knoll Shores and more; Guy Harvey Jewelry (as seen in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition); a collection of camping gear from Great Outdoor Provision Company; and original nature-themed artwork from Elizabeth Bradford.

Tickets cover food and non-alcoholic beverages and are $30 per person in advance (call the Museum Box Office at 919.733.7450 x212), or $35 at the door. A cash bar is also available. Must be 21 to attend. The event is sponsored by Pepsi Bottling Ventures, The Umstead Hotel & Spa, Village Realty OBX, Great Outdoor Provision Company, Carolina Brewing Company.