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FAHI holds annual gala

The Fayette Area Historical Initiative (FAHI) held its fourth-annual “Evening of Elegance” on Friday night at the New College Institute on Baldwin Block in Martinsville.

Funds raised in the benefit will be used for additional property or renovating the FAHI African American Museum and Cultural Center at 211 W. Fayette St., officials said.

FAHI Executive Director Chauncey Adams pointed out that FAHI is staffed entirely by volunteers, and that any assistance provided to the multicultural center is crucial.

Roughly 60-75 people attended “Evening of Elegance,” a yearly fundraiser which featured dinner, music and the silent auction. Many men wore tuxedoes and many women wore gowns or other elegant attire.

In addition to local artwork , furniture items from Bassett Furniture were up for auction as part of the fundraiser.

Located in the former Imperial Savings and Loan building, the FAHI museum has a variety of exhibits and historic items spotlighting black individuals, schools and businesses, including an entire wall devoted to the Imperial Savings and Loan Association, which closed in 2010.

Many other exhibits are rotated in and out of the museum, which hosts tours of local students regularly, Adams said. Virtually everyone who attended Friday’s gala either was a FAHI volunteer or member of the group’s board of directors.

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