Whitesburg KY
Mostly sunny
Mostly sunny

Add Black Sheep goodness to your Thanksgiving dinner

Go to our Facebook pages for announcements and pictures posted after each event, www.facebook.com/pages/Hemphill Community-Center www.facebook.com/Hemphillblacksheep.

Your Thanksgiving dinner could use some Black Sheep goodness! We are now taking orders for Sharon’s School House Rolls and Black Sheep Sourdough Rolls as well as all our other bread products. They will be ready for pick up Wednesday, Nov. 21, evening and Thursday, Nov. 22, morning before 11 am. Place orders by calling ( 971) 86SHEEP, (971)8674337, or order on Messenger! You know you want some!

We can now take credit and debit cards, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover!

The notion of having a brick oven originated from an ARC Flexi Grant Hemphill

Community Center was granted in April 2017. The project was called” The Back to Our Appalachian Roots Project.” Cooking over the open fire was a large component of the grant along with old-time music and skill demonstrations from mountain artists and crafters. The volunteers at the center became really good at cooking with fire and began to envision a brick oven although at the time it seemed impossible.


A few months after the close of the Flexi Grant period, funders came to visit to ask questions about another local non-profit. While at our facility they asked if we had a wish list. Of course the brick oven we longed for was at the top of the list.

The downturn of the mono-economy of coal that had been our bread and butter for over 100 years looked like it was a thing of the past. We had never been able to imagine very large things before.

Black Sheep Bakery is a social enterprise. It is Hemphill Community Center doing business as Black Sheep Brick Oven Bakery. A social enterprise has a social or environmental mission as part of its core purpose and motivation. A values-driven purpose is what distinguishes a social enterprise from one that pursues profit as its only bottom line.

Part of our purpose is the creation and training of a local job force from the population of folks who have (A) lost employment from loss of service jobs when the coal production waned in our area; (B) folks emerging from the mass incarceration ( a“ brain drain”of talents) created by the opioid crisis. Yet another part of the purpose of Hemphill Community Center is that of creating of a community “free space”. Free space??? A gathering place on neutral ground, common ground! A place where all are welcome regardless of differences of class, religion, sexual orientation, age, occupation, gender, etc. There are so few such spaces in our region. A place where we strive to love our neighbor as our self…no exceptions. It is a space where folks can host groups, trainings, and have low cost, familyfriendly entertainment.

So…lo and behold, we heard a rumor wafting across the county. A brick oven was to be funded from a grant being given to the Letcher Co. Culture Hub. We could hardly believe our ears. Excitement and anticipation rippled our organization. There was much to plan and see to.

By the time the news came we had begun working with Snap recipients and Letcher County Drug Court participants. Both programs have a community service component. We quickly learned some of these folks were incredible workers, creative and innovative. We have always had a volunteer labor force. When we began to produce bread products we valued these contributors and colaborers.

Where did the name come from? One day we were brainstorming names for our new enterprise as we worked. The conversation turned and someone said “I’ve always been the black sheep of my family.” All who were present agreed they were too. Thus, the name was established.

Hemphill, being a coal camp, is well aware of the class divides that have always existed in this county. Our community’s labor history has always made us proud but the differences in bosses’ homes and miners’ homes were not hard to see. It was the difference in silk stockings and cotton stockings for the women folk. We have been black sheep in more ways than one because of coal dust. Our coal camp lay alongside the railroad tracks and as kids we played in the coal dust along the tracks. We proudly own that title of Black Sheep!

Don’t forget to come and hang out with us at the center when you can. We have Wi-Fi now so kids and adults are better satisfied not being cut off from their electronic devices. We, also have a playground and a walking track so bring the whole family and visit us.

It’s a hate free zone and you are invited!! Come and linger among friends!!

Weekly Quote: Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you. -Lao Tzu

Nov. 15: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Nov. 16: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Friday Night Pickin’ with Cross Country Bluegrass

Nov. 17: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Nov. 20: Senior Fellowship 10 a.m.

John Ng’s Martial Arts 5:30

Nov. 22: Closed Thanksgiving

Nov. 23: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Friday Night Pickin’ with the Right Fork Ramblers 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 24: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Nov. 25: Shape Note Singing 2-5 p.m.

Nov. 27 : Senior Fellowship 10 a.m.

John Ng’s Martial Arts 5:30

Nov. 29: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Nov. 30: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Friday Night Pickin w/ Sunrise Ridge at 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 1: Black Sheep Bakery opens at 4:30 p.m.

Friday Nite Pickin’: Children get in free when accompanied by an adult. Open mic at intermission. Family friendly environment.

Inclement weather policy: Check our Facebook page for cancellations. Cancellations will be posted at least two hours before any scheduled events. For more information on events and catering: (971)-86-SHEEP, (971) 867-4337.

Hemphill Community Center is located at the old Hemphill Grade School building at 2514 Hwy 317, Jackhorn, KY 41825.

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones. Proverbs 17:21-23

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