Our View: Ups and Downs - Tony Griffey, HPU; Asheville Tea Party

Dec. 21, 2012 @ 01:04 AM

THUMBS UP to High Point’s Tony Griffey who spearheaded this year’s community Christmas concert that raised $122,000 for Open Door Ministries. That local nonprofit provides shelter for the homeless, operates a daily food kitchen and runs a number of other community service programs from its N. Centennial Street headquarters. Griffey, the four-time Grammy award winner, along with his friends, musicians Joe Pecoraro and Warren Jones, presented a concert Tuesday night to an overflow crowd at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church. The event is believed to have been the largest single fundraising event for the city. If not, it certainly must have been one of the largest ever. There is, however, no uncertainty about the positive impact that the event will have.

THUMBS DOWN to that Tea Party group in Buncombe County (website AshevilleTeaPAC.org) that is planning to go full-speed ahead with its plans for “The Great Gun Giveaway” fundraising raffle. Despite last week’s tragedy in Newtown, Conn., leaders of the group said earlier this week that ticket sales and the raffle will go on as planned. Two guns will be raffled. One is an AR15 semi-automatic .223-caliber rifle that is similar to the one used by Adam Lanza in last week’s deadly rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School. There’s nothing wrong with having such a fundraising raffle, but come on folks, exhibit some compassion and common sense and delay it a few weeks out of respect.

THUMBS UP to High Point University for opening up the university’s campus and putting on another fine Community Christmas Celebration. The festive event affords a nice evening out for folks in the greater High Point area and also reflects HPU’s commitment to the city. It also showcases the university for members of the public who might not see it on a regular basis. “We want people to know that they are free to come to our campus,” Don Scarborough, vice president of community relations told the Enterprise. “... When people come on campus and feel comfortable, they will come back.”

THUMBS UP to Randolph County native Brent Ridge and his partner Josh Kilmer-Purcell who earlier this month won the $1 million prize for this season’s version of the CBS reality show “The Amazing Race.” Ridge, a graduate of Randleman High and UNC-Chapel Hill, and Kilmer-Purcell live in Sharon Springs, N.Y., where they operate a goat farm and goat-cheese and farm products related business under the name Beekman 1802. Ridge and Kilmer-Purcell competed under the name Team Beekman.