Ever since the renovations at Pilot Mountain School were completed, the auditorium has been used for a wide variety of activities...wedding receptions, family reunions, bluegrass shows, gospel sings, Bible studies, even a pocketbook auction.
Last week on Valentine's Day I attended a sweetheart supper, with catered dinner, impressive decorations, tables and tables filled with friends I've made since I began this journey, and for our entertainment, Elvis. Well, sort of.
Meet Steve Brittain, aka Elvis, in this picture I borrowed from a News Herald article about him.
His wife Pat was my go-to person when I first began interviewing community members. She found phone numbers. She made lists. She called ahead to let people know I was for real. Valentine's Day she showed me a different side of her life: hostess, emcee and organizer.
Her husband Steve is an Elvis impersonator. I knew that because I had eaten lunch with him several times at the coffee shop. My photographer, Andrew Pitts, even took a picture of the two of them for possible use in the book. I call this pose, "Elvis Unmasked."
What I didn't know was how much fun an evening with Pat and Steve and Elvis would turn out to be. Remember the concept readers use, willing suspension of disbelief? When the music started and Steve/Elvis entered, yes, we willingly entered the suspension of disbelief.
Reality check message to the ladies in front rushing the stage, dancing along, putting money in his pants. This is not really Elvis. Elvis is dead. But for a moment, an hour and a half, this was Elvis and we were teenagers again and we suspended all reality and had fun.