Welcome to Our Third Issue for 2018!
There’s a whole lot of recent and upcoming happenings in Mayberry, including festivals and other personal appearances by TAGS stars.
Andy Griffith’s hometown of Mount Airy, N.C., is the hub for most things Mayberry, but there’s also news from Florida and Alabama, from California to France and back home again in Indiana.
But enough chit-chat–it’s time to make our move to all the news!
Here are some notices that folks have posted on Floyd’s bulletin board:
The Andy Griffith Museum, featuring the late Emmett Forrest’s amazing collection of Andy Griffith memorabilia, is celebrating 2017’s dazzling remodeling. The museum is open daily in Mount Airy, N.C. For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* May 18: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). Info at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* May 18-20: Fifth Annual Mayberry in the Midwest festival (also featuring the Mayberry Squad Car Nationals) in Danville, Ind. Special guest stars this year are Maggie Peterson Mancuso (Mayberry’s Charlene Darling), Ronnie Schell (two episodes of TAGS and Duke Slater on “Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.”), Margaret Kerry (Bess Muggins and Helen Scobey), Dixie Griffith (daughter of Andy Griffith), and George Lindsey Jr. Lots of Mayberry tribute artists will be on hand as well. Look for updates here and either on the event’s website or at Mayberry in the Midwest on Facebook.
* May 20: Rodney Dillard and wife Beverly are joined by the Walker Brothers for “An Afternoon in Mayberry” from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Florida Opry, located at 605 N. Collins St., Plant City, Fla. Tickets are $20 in advance or $25 (cash only) at the door. For more info, visit www.ehhsoc.org/the-florida-opry.
* June 15: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. with autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). Visit www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* June 16: Mayberry 101 author Neal Brower kicks off his summer lecture series about TAGS with a talk about the “Back to Nature” episode (including Golden Arms, Wild Pheasant Birds, and Lake Loons!), starting at 2 p.m., in the Andy Griffith Museum Theatre in Mount Airy, N.C. Admission is included with Andy Griffith Museum admission ($8 for adults, $6 for ages 12 and under). Visit www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604. (Note: Neal Brower will also be doing a lecture at the Andy Griffith Museum on the previous Sat., June 9, as part of a private three-day motorcoach tour hosted by Our State magazine. For more info about that Mayberry-infused tour of the Mount Airy area, visit https://ourstate.events.)
* July 12: Karen Knotts brings her “Tied Up in Knotts” show to the Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton, Calif. Show time is 7:30 p.m. For info, visit themuck.org/upcoming.
* July 20: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For more info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* July 20-22: The 6th Annual Mayberry Meet-Up takes place in Mount Airy, N.C., sponsored by TAGSRWC’s “Two Chairs, No Waiting” Podcast and hosted by Allan “Floyd” Newsome. Home base for the event is the Mayberry Motor Inn.
This year’s event is timed to coincide with both Betty Lynn‘s meet-and-greet at the Andy Griffith Museum on July 20 and Neal Brower’s lecture at the Museum on July 21. For more info, visit the Mayberry Meet-Up Facebook page.
* July 21: Mayberry 101 author Neal Brower presents a lecture on the classic “Opie the Birdman” episode of TAGS, starting at 2 p.m., in the Andy Griffith Museum Theatre in Mount Airy, N.C. Admission is included with Andy Griffith Museum admission ($8 for adults, $6 for ages 12 and under). For more info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Aug. 11: Mayberry 101 author Neal Brower wraps up his trilogy of summer lectures with a session on the “Opie and the Bully” episode of TAGS, starting at 2 p.m., in the Andy Griffith Museum Theatre in Mount Airy, N.C. Admission is included with Andy Griffith Museum admission ($8 for adults, $6 for ages 12 and under). Visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Aug. 17: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Sept. 21: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. (Beat the rush to visit with her the next week at Mayberry Days!) She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Sept. 27-30: 29th Annual Mayberry Days in Mount Airy, N.C. Actually, a few festival events start as early as Monday the 24th. Stars from “The Andy Griffith Show” confirmed so far include Betty Lynn, Rodney Dillard, Ronnie Schell, and LeRoy McNees. Karen Knotts will also present her show “A Deputy’s Daughter.” Much more TBA soon.
Tickets are already available for several performances and activities, including The Doug Dillard Tribute Concert featuring Rodney Dillard and his band, Ronnie Schell’s Salute to Jim Nabors, and “Bluegrass Mayberry Style” by LeRoy McNees and Friends.
Also performing are the VW Boys with their “Salute to Mayberry,” the Motown Legacy Revue, Michael Hoover’s “Memories of Elvis,” the Mayberry Days debut of country star Collin Raye (four platinum albums and four #1 singles), the legendary Marty Stuart and the Fabulous Superlatives (another Mayberry Days debut), James Gregory (“the funniest man in America”), and the Malpass Brothers.
There’s still more: Colonel Tim’s Talent Time, Neal Brower’s Lecture/TAGSRWC Annual Meeting, and the Mayberry Days Golf Tournament and its separate Banquet & Entertainment.
Or make it a whole week of fun in Mount Airy with shows earlier in the week, Sept. 24-26, including comedian John Floyd (Mon.) and beach music by both Band of Oz (Tues.) and The Embers featuring Craig Woolard (Wed.).
And those are just the ticketed events. There’s much more that doesn’t require tickets, including the Mayberry Days Parade, Mrs. Wiley’s Tea Party, trivia, apple-peeling, checkers, horseshoes, pie-eating, pork chop sandwich-eating and Mayberry Idle Talent contests, music, and vendors.
And that’s not to mention meet-and-greet sessions with the Mayberry stars, the Andy Griffith Museum, Mayberry-related movies at the Earle Theatre, Mayberry Days Silent Auction and all of the everyday sights and attractions of Mount Airy.
In other words, it’s not at all too early to start making plans to attend. For complete info, visit www.mayberrydays.org.
* Oct. 19: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Nov. 5-10: Mayberry Cruise 13. Dixie Griffith (daughter of Andy) will be the guest for the cruise to the Western Caribbean from Tampa to Cozumel and back aboard Carnival’s Paradise. For more info, visit www.allaboutcruisesnc.net or call (336) 538-4926.
* Nov. 16: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
* Dec. 21: Betty Lynn greets fans at the Andy Griffith Museum 12:30-3:30 p.m. She will have autographed 8 x 10 photos available ($10). For info, visit the website at www.andygriffithmuseum.org or call (336) 786-1604.
**** News of Cast & Crew ****
Ron Howard is in full promotion mode for Solo: A Star Wars Story. In addition to making the interview rounds with all major media, he welcomed stars from Hollywood and beyond for the spectacular world premiere at Hollywood’s El Capitan Theatre on May 10.
Ron’s at the Cannes Film Festival for this week European premiere on May 15 ahead of the film’s nationwide opening weekend in the U.S. on May 25.
Ron also has recently completed narration for the fifth season of “Arrested Development,” which will be released on Netflix on May 29. And Ron did narration for a remix of the show’s fourth season, which was released on Netflix earlier this month.
With worlds colliding, Ron narrated this hilarious recap of Star Wars history that has Ron doing the narration “Arrested Development”-style.
Ron’s Imagine Entertainment has purchased the film rights The Warehouse, a novel by Rob Hart that’s scheduled for publication next year, with the idea that Ron will likely direct the movie version of the spy thriller.
Dean Webb (the Darling mandolin player) and his fellow Missouri Boatride band members were inducted into the Reeds Spring (Mo.) Area Hall of Fame on May 5. Hearty congratulations to Dean and the band!
Rodney Dillard has been performing with the Walker Brothers at churches and other venues in Florida and elsewhere this year. He hopes his much-anticipated and long-awaited CD 0f new Dillards music will be released soon.
Margaret Kerry has been making lots of personal appearances, mostly in California and focused on her Disney experiences, though she is among the guests for this month’s Mayberry in the Midwest festival. She was also a guest at the Missouri Cherry Blossom Festival in Marshfield last month.
Jackie Joseph-Lawrence helped her longtime pal Doris Day celebrate her 96th birthday in Carmel, Calif., in April. A birthday bash helped raise money for the Doris Day Animal Foundation. Jackie and husband David also had an eventful trip to France in late April.
George Lindsey Jr. has released GoobaSon Sings, a CD of him performing funny songs. (Song titles include “Fleas,” “Roaches,” “The Ol’ Rubber Handshake Gag” and his always-popular “Goober Says, ‘Hey!'” He’ll have some CDs on hand at Mayberry events that he’s attending this year, including Mayberry in the Midwest (Danville, Ind.) this month and Mayberry Days (Mount Airy, N.C.) in September.
**** Chapter Update ****
We’ve had three new chapters start since the March eBullet:
“Do Cousins Count?” Key West, Fla., and elsewhere
Fife’s Mountain Folklore Society Mt. Pleasant, N.C.
Mayberry Supper Club Orlando, Fla.
That brings us to a total of 1,455 chapters founded since TAGSRWC began with four Goobers sitting around a TV in Nashville in the fall of 1979.
Starting a chapter of TAGSRWC is actually really easy to do. Just pick a name that hasn’t already been selected by another group. (Granted, that is getting harder!)
You can check the searchable list of chapter names already taken at www.tagsrwc.com. Then submit your chapter’s name with a list of your founding members by e-mail (to Goober@imayberry.com) or by U.S. Mail to TAGSRWC’s HQ (118 16th Avenue South, Suite 4, PMB 146, Nashville, TN 37203-3100).
**** Merchandise Update ****
We now have more than 50 different T-shirt designs to choose from!
Most of our adult-sized T-shirts are just $20. A few designs are $18, and the Lawmen and Sheriff all-over designs are $25. (The long-sleeved Sheriff shirt is $40.) Several designs are available in sweatshirts (and some also as hoodies) as well.
And we have a new totes, throws, pouches, pillows, pillow cases, blankets and towels in this design:
Check out new items and old favorites (including lots of great books for summer reading!) online at Weaver’s Department Store. (Or just go to www.imayberry.com and click on one of the orange and blue Weaver’s buttons at the top of the page.)
And remember that your purchases from Weaver’s help support Mayberry events and Mayberry-related charitable causes all year long at locations all around the country. Those sales also help keep our online Mayberry newsletters and communities available to everybody free of charge. As always, thank you for shopping at Weaver’s!
**** Chapter News ****
“Some of Us Got It, Some of Us Ain’t” (Garner/Clayton, N.C.) celebrated its 20th Anniversary as a chapter on April 19, which just happened to be Elinor Donahue‘s birthday, too. The group watched episodes, did some trivia and games, did some hearty eatin’, and just enjoyed Mayberry fellowship.
Members of at least five chapters (Barney, Greensboro, N.C.; Mother Figure, Huntsville, Ala.; “I Ain’t No Rockefeller,” Big Stone Gap, Va.; “Hearty Eatin’ Men and Beautiful, Delicate Women,” Tuscaloosa, Ala.; and “You Better Put a Buckeye in Your Pocket and Do the Incant for a Sore Foot,” Bessemer, Ala.) and fans from at least six states participated in April’s annual fundraiser in Tuscaloosa for the Eagles’ Wings organization, which provides housing and support for adults with disabilities.
Many of the Mayberry tribute artists (including Dixie Griffith) also hopped over to nearby Gordo, Ala., the day after the Eagles’ Wings event to participate in a local sock hop featuring Allan “Floyd” Newsome as the DJ.
That’s Chapter News for this round. If you have news or photos of your chapter activities that you want to share in The eBullet, please send your updates to Goober@imayberry.com.
**** Mayberry on the Web ****
This TAGSRWC online group is organized and overseen by webmaster Allan “Floyd” Newsome with spirited help from Keith “Col. Harvey” Brown. You can check out the fun and sign up for free at: http://imayberrycommunity.com.
The iMayberry Community complements our other online activities, including our main www.imayberry.com page, podcasts, Facebook pages, online newsletters (such as The eBullet!), weaversdepartmentstore.com and chat rooms.
Two Chairs, No Waiting is our weekly podcast of TAGS news, interviews and pretty much whatever happens to be going on in and around Mayberry. It’s hosted by Allan Newsome. Most weeks also include a Mayberry History Lesson from special correspondent Randy Turner.
There’s a new episode every Tuesday (and you can watch and listen live during tapings on Monday evenings). Past episodes are in an online Archives in case you want to listen to or view classic installments you’ve missed. (As of this week, there have been 478 episodes since Allan started the podcasts almost a decade ago.)
And you’ll also find links on that web page to a couple of other outstanding Mayberry-related podcasts: Burke on Mayberry (hosted by TAGSRWC’s Kevin Burke) and the Mayberry Bible Study Podcast (again hosted by Allan Newsome).
TAGSRWC’s official page on Facebook has over 240,000 Mayberry friends! You can find us at www.facebook.com/tagsrwc. If you haven’t already dropped by the page, we hope you’ll check it out sometime when you have the chance. We invite you to become a TAGSRWC Facebook Friend!
We also have links in our “Liked by this Page” section to the pages of several TAGSRWC chapters on Facebook (including the Gomer and Goober Pyle Comic Book Literary Guild), as well as to Facebook pages of Mayberry Days, the Andy Griffith Museum, TAGS actors and others.
Ben Weaver also has his own Facebook page at www.facebook.com/weaversdepartmentstore. It features all the latest in Mayberry items and merchandise news.
**** Post Note ****
Between issues of The eBullet, keep up with all the happenings in Mayberry with the daily Who’s Been Messin’ Up the Bulletin Board? (aka “WBMUTBB?”) Digest. It’s a free subscriber list that consists entirely of comments, newsflashes, and questions and answers from subscribers. You can sign up for that list by going to the Mailing Lists link at tagsrwc.com. “WBMUTBB?” also has its own Archives where you can follow the ongoing stream of messages.
TAGSRWC publishes Weaver’s Newsletter in alternate months to The eBullet. Like The eBullet, the Weaver’s Newsletter is free. Its focus is tilted a little more to Mayberry merchandise and collectibles and quick newsflashes. It has some content overlap with The eBullet, sometimes earlier and sometimes later, depending on the timing of the news. To sign up, go to Weaver’s Newsletter Sign-Up.
The next eBullet will be published in July. The next Weaver’s Newsletter is scheduled for June.