One of the wonderful things about the Foothills is the amount of emphasis on arts and science. The SALT Block, a cultural arts complex, is one of the few places in the United States where you can experience Sciences, Arts, and Literature Together in one block. Operation of the block is overseen by the Salt Block Foundation, which focuses on things such as building maintenance, freeing the individual components to serve the community.
The Catawba Science Center is a 35,000-square-foot science technology children’s museum offering hands-on exhibits, salt and freshwater aquarium galleries, and a state-of-the-art Millholland digital planetarium theater. It offers interactive and educational school field trips, as well as engaging summer camps for youth from pre-K through rising ninth grades. Additional offerings include birthday parties, preschool science programs, homeschool classes, scout camps and a tech club. www.catawbascience.org
The Hickory Choral Society excites, enthuses and entertains audiences with rich, wonderful, powerful choral music. With over 110 singers blending their voices and striving for musical excellence, the Choral Society has numerous events throughout the year in the community. The music of the Choral Society is collected and lent to neighboring schools, colleges, and churches. www.hickorychoralsociety.org
The Hickory Museum of Art continues on the pursuit of inspiration, imagination and creativity, to continue fostering important conversations, to continue being a catalyst for positive change, and to keep shaping our future, today and every day. The Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, an honor earned by just over 1,000 of the nation's estimated 35,000 museums. www.hickoryart.org
The Patrick Beaver Library is located adjacent to the Science Center and is known for a great selection of books, audiobooks, movies and music. They are also well known for their children’s section.
The United Arts Council of Catawba County is a major source of grants for organizations and individual artists, and is supported by the North Carolina Arts Council, the governmental entities of Catawba County, City of Hickory, City of Conover, City of Newton, City of Claremont and Township of Maiden, as well as corporations, foundations and individuals in our area. www.artscatawba.org
Western Piedmont Symphony (WPS) is the professional orchestra of the western foothills of North Carolina engaging and enriching the region with high-quality symphonic music performance, bold programming and educational opportunities for all ages. Each spring, WPS provides a curriculum plan for area music educators and presents immersive music education concerts for more than 3,500 fourth- and fifth-grade students in Catawba, Burke, Caldwell and Alexander counties. Each concert season, the symphony presents five classical Masterworks concerts, three Foothills Pops shows, four Chamber Classics concerts and numerous community outreach performances. www.wpsymphony.org
As you can see, the SALT Block is a gem for the Foothills, as well as the entire region. People come from near and far to take advantage of what they have to offer. We are so fortunate that this is located right in our backyard!