An adventure submitted by my brother Jason.
Sometimes small towns find big excitement.
On Saturday August 7, 2010, my family and I had the privilege to spend the afternoon with Patrick Kinkade. Patrick is the older brother of Thomas Kinkade, the famous painter of light.
Patrick was appearing at Ashley’s Art Gallery in Fuquay Varina, North Carolina. In his limited spare time (he is a college Professor), Patrick travels the country and highlights the works of his brother. Customers who purchased a Thomas Kinkade painting were given the opportunity to have their picture highlighted by Patrick at no additional cost.
Growing up in Asheville, I was excited to purchase the painting Kinkade did of the Biltmore House. Patrick was very personable and spent a long time highlighting my Biltmore painting. He told my daughter that she was the cutest little girl he had ever seen, as she carefully studied what this amazing painter was doing. (When Patrick took a lunch break, I caught my daughter attempting to stick her finger in his paint so she could fingerpaint.)
It was easy to see the passion Patrick has for what he does. “I do this for fun,” he exclaimed. While highlighting the Biltmore painting, I told Patrick that I own the print of the painting his brother did of the Wailing Wall.
Patrick’s eyes lit up as he told me that he had that painting in his home and that he would be glad to highlight it for me. I then dashed home, got the painting, and later watched as Patrick truely made it come alive. It was difficult to tell when he was finished that it was not an original painting, and it was neat to watch his excitement as he admired his finished product.
Sitting behind Patrick was a gentleman that also carefully studied what Patrick was doing. He introduced himself to me as John Byrne our town Mayor. John is the son of former Major League Baseball Star Tommy Byrne.
John shared stories with me about what is was like growing up as the son of a famous baseball pitcher. He told me one fascinating story of how as a child, his babysitter didn’t show up and so a husband and wife volunteered. They were none other than Marilyn Monroe and his father’s teammate Joe Dimaggio.
You never know what you’re going to find in a small town, and sometimes it will surprise you.
If you enjoyed this adventure by Brother Jason, you should also read The Tony Gwynn Strike Out