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The Hermitage, home of President Andrew Jackson, has an exciting new exhibit, "Andrew Jackson: Born for a Storm" and CedarStone Bank is proud to be involved with its introduction. Opening January 8, the exhibit is part of the Bicentennial celebration of the Battle of New Orleans. This state-of-the-art, $1.1 million exhibit brings the rich story of Andrew Jackson’s meteoric rise, from his humble beginnings to his presidency, through bold visuals and a series of interactive displays. The exhibit focuses on the three pivotal stages of Jackson’s astonishing life: his modest origins as an orphan, his resiliency as a General and his visionary leadership as a President.

On Thursday, January 8, The Hermitage is offering free admission to the exhibit. There will be a wreath-laying ceremony honoring Andrew Jackson and his army at 11:00 am, the 101st Airborne Division Dixieland Band will perform, as well as other family-oriented activities to learn more about President Jackson and his military campaigns. Reserve free tickets here.

You may also attend a private reception at the exhibit, hosted by CedarStone Bank president Bob McDonald and his wife, Susan, on Thursday, January 15. For more information, please call Bob at (615) 547-5581.

Said McDonald of the exhibit, "Like Mount Vernon and Monticello, The Hermitage is a national treasure. Andrew Jackson's presidency came at a pivotal time for a young America. We are developing new ways to explore his life and presidency." Bob is a member of the board of the Andrew Jackson Foundation (formerly the Ladies' Hermitage Association), along with nationally known figures like National Public Radio journalist Mara Liasson and two Pulitzer Prize winners, historian Joe Meacham and Charles Overby, former CEO of the Freedom Forum and the Newseum.

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The 27th Annual Christmas Dinner Show presented by the Bert Coble Singers took place December 18 and 19 in Baird Chapel at Cumberland University campus. CedarStone Bank’s Jennifer Perry is director of the choral group.
“This was our 27th annual event and we were excited to see the friends and loyal patrons that have been a part of this program for many years,” said Perry. “Dr. Coble had a great vision when he originally organized this event, and it is an honor to carry the tradition on again this year,” she continued.  
The idea for Christmas dinner show was born when Dr. Coble was a professor at Cumberland University. At that time, the shows raised money for choir tours to recruit new students; now they raise money for some very worthy organizations, like the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society. Said Perry, “We don’t have an exact total of funds raised over the years, but we do know that well over $250,000 has been raised for The American Cancer Society alone.” The event also benefits the Bert Coble Music Scholarship at Cumberland University.
The volunteer choir, who began rehearsals in September, is made up of singers from across Middle Tennessee. Said Perry, “Our vocalists are very talented and they are always excited about presenting a great evening of Christmas songs and carols that will touch on Christmas memories and some more modern tunes that may be surprising.” Both shows were sold out this year.  
Jennifer Perry’s work with the Bert Coble Singers is a great example of how CedarStone employees are involved in their communities. An event like the Christmas show is really a year-round effort, and it benefits nonprofit and educational organizations that do a great deal of good for others.
Interview with Jennifer Perry: Simply Involved
How did you become involved with the Bert Coble Singers group?  
I was Doc’s student. When he started the community choir, he called and asked if I’d sing with them. I’ve been involved with the group since 1987.
Who inspired your interest in music, especially choir?  
I’ve been around music all my life, in my home and in church. My whole family sang in the choir while I was growing up. Mom always played the piano, and my brother played the trumpet. Aside from my family, the two most influential people musically in my life are Ruth Blair, my piano teacher, and Dr. Coble.
What moved you to become director of the Bert Coble Singers?
The group’s efforts support some very deserving organizations: The American Cancer Society, The American Heart Association and The Bert Coble Music Scholarship at Cumberland University. The shows bring the community together for an evening of goodwill, good fellowship, good food and good music. Everyone that comes to one of our dinner shows will leave filled with the Christmas spirit.
Why were those organizations chosen for the fundraising? Do you have a special connection to any of the organizations?  
These organizations were established while Dr. Coble was leading the choir, so I can’t speak to why any of these were chosen, except to say that we all know someone who has either directly, or indirectly, been impacted by cancer or heart disease. So any little thing that we can do help raise funds to treat these diseases is very worthwhile. As far as the Bert Coble Music Scholarship at Cumberland, it’s fitting that some of our proceeds help fund this. After all, that’s where the concept for community dinner shows began for our community.
Jennifer Perry is a personal banker at CedarStone’s Lebanon Office.

Tweet: CedarStone's Jennifer Perry leads Bert Coble Singers in holiday tradition


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What better way is there to bring together family, friends and community than a good, ole-fashioned Christmas parade? There are three coming right up and we hope to see you there:

Lebanon Christmas Parade: "A Country Christmas"
Sunday, December 7 at 2:00 pm

Mount Juliet Christmas Parade: "A Frozen Christmas"
Saturday, December 6 at 11:00 am

Donelson Christmas Parade: "30 Years of American Christmas Traditions"
Saturday, December 6 at 2:00 pm

Come on out, bring the family and friends, and come to see us at CedarStone Bank soon.

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Lots of people will be doing their holiday shopping online, which creates opportunities for phishing, malware, and scams. But there are things you can do to make your online shopping more secure.

Be careful about emails. Some malicious activity comes in the form of holiday greetings. Only open emails from people and companies you know. Even then, it is best not to click on web links inside emails; go out to your browser and access the website there. If an email doesn’t look completely legitimate, even a personal one, check it out with the sender first.

Know your charities. Bad guys will take advantage of your generosity with appeals that pull on the heartstrings. If you see a charity you want to donate to, they will take it if you visit their website directly or send them a check.

Secure your system. Think of your computer, tablet or phone as a house: don’t leave the door unlocked. Here are some security issues you will want to consider:

•  Is your wi-fi connection password-protected?
•  Do you have a good antivirus program? How about malware detector? Ad and pop-up blockers?
•  Is your operating system and all your software updated/patched? This includes your browser, browser plug-ins, and any external programs you may use.
•  Did you know that attachments can carry viruses?

Only use secure sites. Even if your system is relatively secure—no system is perfect—websites you visit may not be. Sites whose web addresses begin with https (rather than http) are more secure. Take any warnings about security certificates seriously.

Monitor your accounts. Look at your credit card and checking accounts online very often. If you see suspicious activity, report it immediately.

Security risks may also come to you in the form of fake ads, messages inside of social media programs, and phone calls.

Hackers and online thieves are very good at what they do. A little extra care could save you time, money, and hassle.

More information is at the website for the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team. For users of mobile devices, additional precautions are recommended.

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CedarStone President Bob McDonald with Justin Duncan, Willie McDonald, and CedarStone EVP Hank Stuart

All seniors in Metro Nashville public schools  participate in a "capstone" experience. A capstone experience is a project that allows students to learn about themselves by exploring a topic of interest, specialization, community need, or career choice. According to the Tennessee graduation requirements, all students must complete a capstone experience which may include a senior project, virtual enterprise, internship, externship, work-based learning, service learning, and community service.

Justin Duncan, a senior at McGavock High School, has chosen to create his "capstone" experience at CedarStone Bank. He will be spending at least 40 hours with us, documenting his experience in a portfolio of his research, observations, and new skills. Through his English class, Justin will be writing a 2,300-word research paper

Here's some more about the Metro capstone program:

If you know of other Metro seniors who would like to share their capstone experiences, please comment below.

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