You can tell the days are getting closer to festival time when we are able to start focusing on fun details of the event. One such detail is moving ahead with a favorite Longleaf Film Festival tradition: the awarding of handcrafted prize tiles that connect the art and craft of filmmaking with the North Carolina tradition of artisan pottery. We treasure the tiles from years past; they are beautiful, durable keepsakes of each year’s new friends and films. This year’s will be no different.
After moving to the family farm in Randolph County—in the community of Whynot, near Seagrove—in 1976, Meredith and her husband, Mark, opened their own shop. Meredith later helped start Acacia Art Tile with her sister, Lee Lewis. Today, Meredith continues the art and craft of handmade tile making on her own, rolling, cutting, and decorating each tile individually—often with a whimsical design that quickly becomes a favorite of her customers.
Are you wondering where the town’s name of “Whynot” come from? I did, and it’s an interesting story in itself. During the 1850s, when the Fayetteville and Western Plank Road was completed, passing through the area on its way to Bethania, a post office was established in the area, which needed a name. Folks debated about what to call their community: “Why not name it this?” “Why not name it that?” “Why not name it something else?” Finally, one frustrated resident suggested, “Why not call it ‘Why Not’ and we can go on home?” And so, they did.
A story, a nugget of history, a beautiful piece of art created as a gift that continues a Longleaf tradition—how can things come together any better?
Mark your calendar for the Saturday night awards ceremony and see this year’s award tile in person!
May 11–12 at the North Carolina Museum of History.
Film, Fun, and Community.