Do you ever have a strong desire to try spelunking? That is explore caves and underground caverns. Chuck Sutherland makes these treks into caves and takes spectacular photographs not only underground, but of nature in its magnificent and often quiet moments of beauty. He will share many of these, which have been published in books and magazines, and on the web, including the TNVacation website, BBC and the Discovery Channel. The Shalom Center for Continuing Education will present his program titled "Exploring the Caves of Eastern TN" on Friday, Oct. 20, and Saturday, Oct. 21, in Adshead Hall on the lower level of Fletcher House in Pleasant Hill.

Caving for him is a way to better understand the story of the rocks and water. While he is a geographer by training, he loves all science. He frequently partners in his caving projects with historians, biologists, paleontologists, anthropologists and geologists. Most of all, he likes to get people excited about caves and caving. Sutherland has worked with Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, The Nature Conservancy of Tennessee, as well as Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation, The Land Trust of Tennessee and the Cumberland River Compact on conservation oriented projects around Tennessee and Kentucky.

Professionally, Sutherland is the geographic information systems (GIS) specialist for the Upper Cumberland Development District. He has published hundreds of maps in books, magazines and on the web. He is currently working with the state of Tennessee to create new maps for state parks in the Upper Cumberland, and he is using LiDAR data to reveal previously unknown cave entrances. His maps and GIS analysis have been awarded by his peers in the Tennessee Geographic Information Council and even recognized by the international GIS software manufacturer, ESRI. To get a preview of Sutherland’s photography, go to

The program begins on Friday evening, Oct. 21, with a potluck supper (bring table setting and a dish to share) at 5:30 p.m., followed by the program from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Those who don’t choose to attend the supper are more than welcome to come just for the program. On Saturday, the program opens with a complimentary continental breakfast at 8:30 a.m., followed by the presentation from 9 to 10:30 a.m. There is no charge to attend, although a freewill donation is suggested. The Shalom Center for Continuing Education is a non-profit educational center that provides opportunities for holistic education in areas of social, economic, cultural, ecological, ethical and theological importance on behalf of shalom (wholeness, health and peace). The Center offers a number of free one and two-day programs every year, as well as many six-week Shalom Center short courses. To learn more about new programs and courses being offered, email to be put on the mailing list or visit the Shalom Center website at

Adshead Hall is on the lower level of Fletcher House for Assisted Living on the Uplands Village campus at 40 Fletcher Dr. off Church St. across from the Pleasant Hill Post Office on Main Street. For more information, call Barbara Everett, president, at 931-277-3968.


This week in Pleasant Hill:

Tuesday, Oct. 17 — 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., The Grab Thrift Store “two for one” sale, at 9547 Hwy. 70 W. Call 287-3018. Note: The Grab does not have a public bathroom. Reminder: when schools are closed for inclement weather, the Grab will be closed also.

Wednesday, Oct. 18 — 1:30 p.m., Annie Crabtree on piano for Wharton elders’ sing-a-long at Munson Home #2.

Wednesday, Oct. 18 — 5 p.m. (note earlier time), documentary: “One Day on Earth – the World’s Time Capsule” in Room 4, PH Community Church, UCC Main Street & Church Drive in Pleasant Hill.

Wednesdays — 6 p.m., Bible study & prayer followed by choir rehearsal at the Pleasant Hill Baptist Mission at 39 Browntown Rd. near Main St.

Thursday, Oct. 19 — 2 p.m. in Wharton Munson (2) Home, Dicksie Schmitt playing violin. Public is invited.

Friday, Oct. 20 — 10 a.m. in Fletcher House Dining Room, the Art Circle Library brings books, audiobooks and DVDs.   

Fridays starting Oct. 20 — “Political Philosophy” Shalom Center short course in room 1 of the PH Community Church.

Saturday, Oct. 21 — 8 to 11 a.m., PH Town Hall, 351 E. Main St., Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.

Sunday, Oct. 22 — 7 p.m., concert: “Eine Kleine Kammmer Musik II” in PH Community Church sanctuary. Free and open to the public.

Trending Video