From the history of barbecue to Hilter's war tactics, there's classes in Kingsport

Rick Wagner • Updated Sep 26, 2019 at 11:57 AM

KINGSPORT — Ever wonder about the history of barbecue, Hitler’s war tactics, bridging cultural divides and the basics of digital photography? Or would you like to see a couple of plays at the Barter Theatre this fall?

If those or a host of other topics and activities interest you, the Kingsport Alliance for Continued Learning (KACL) has a program for you. Beginning on Tuesday, Oct. 15, KACL will offer a series of informal classes this fall through a partnership with East Tennessee State University at Kingsport.

The non-credit courses with no homework, grades or tests are open to anyone. Classes will continue through Tuesday, Dec. 3, and most will be held at the Kingsport Center for Higher Education, 300 W. Market St. in downtown Kingsport, with the exception of four field trips. The cost of participation is $25, which covers all regular classes for the fall 2019 term, and two of four field trips have additional charges.


— Tuesday classes begin on Oct. 15 at 10 a.m. when Dr. Daryl Carter will discuss “America in the 2020s” and delve into political and cultural issues facing America in the next decade. Coffee and muffins will be available at 9:30 a.m. before class begins.

Tuesdays will also feature lessons about different areas, cultures and history of the world, including “The Four Corners of the United States,” presented by Dr. Ron Zucker, retired professor of computer science at ETSU, on Oct. 29; and “Australia and New Zealand,” presented by John Barrett on Nov. 5.

On Nov. 12, “Truth, Justice, Excellence in Barbecue, and the American Way of Life” will explore the history of barbecue and is presented by Dr. Fred Sauceman, senior writer and associate professor of Appalachian studies at ETSU. Having just returned from a field season in Pompeii, Lisa Rolen will share the latest interpretation of that “slice of life” with “Rediscovering Pompeii,” the last Tuesday topic on Nov. 19.

— Thursday classes start at 1:30 p.m. and begin on Oct. 17 with “Current Practices and Trends in Financial Services,” presented by Randel Taylor. This class explores existing and emerging technology within financial services with a focus on banking.

Other courses include “The First Soldier: Hitler as a Military Leader” by Dr. Stephen Fritz, professor of history at ETSU; “Culture, Social Change and Community Development in Kingsport,” presented by Shelburne Ferguson, attorney-at-law; “The Basics of Digital Photography” by Rick Currie, a well-known local photographer; and “Building Cultural Bridges: Premises, Promises and Privileges – Our Call to Action,” presented by Dr. Brenda White Wright and Sharon Petke.—

— Each Friday class will take place at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

The first morning class will begin on Oct. 18 with Dr. Colin F. Baxter, professor emeritus of history at ETSU, leading “The Secret History of RDX – The Super Explosive that Helped Win World War II.”

Additional morning classes are titled “The Chemical Industry in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, Part II: The Rest of the Story,” presented by Dr. Bob Maleski; “The History of Holston Medical Group,” presented by Dr. Jerry Miller, who founded HMG; and “Forensic Document Examination,” presented by Dr. Chris Rush, assistant professor of criminal justice and criminology at ETSU. Numerous case studies will be used to illustrate the discussion.

Friday afternoon courses include “The Art of Zentangle,” which teaches an easy-to-learn, relaxing and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns, led by Kay Grogg, certified Zentangle teacher, on Nov. 1. “Differences Between Federal and State Jury Systems: the War on Drugs in East Tennessee,” presented by Rick Tipton, and “Can We Really Learn from the Experience of Others? How Shared Learnings Can Become Actual Change,” presented by Peter Lodal, complete the Friday schedule.


KACL will also host four field trips this semester. The first is a tour of Barter Theatre and viewing of “The Producers” at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 22, at a cost of $40 per KACL members. Next is a trip to the Gray Fossil Site at 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 25, at no charge, and there will also be a no-charge tour of the Kingsport Times News on Friday, Nov. 15. A second trip to Barter to watch “White Christmas” will be at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at a cost of $21 per KACL Member.

The KACL was established in 1993 to provide adults, regardless of educational background or age, opportunities to attend stimulating courses, lectures and special events. To register and pay the $25 membership fee, or for more information, including a full list of spring 2019 classes, call (423) 354-5200 or visit www.kingsportlearning.org.

For disability accommodations, call ETSU at Kingsport Downtown at (423) 354-5200.