James Arthur Vineyards announces student award for medieval and renaissance studies at UNL
Posted: Wed, May 18, 2016
ABOUT THIS PHOTO: Andrea Nichols, a doctoral candidate in history with a minor in medieval and renaissance studies, is the first recipient of the James Arthur Vineyards Award.
Students in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln will benefit from a student travel and research award fund established by James Arthur Vineyards and owners James and Barbara Ballard of Raymond, Nebraska, who for years have hosted an annual renaissance festival.
The James Arthur Vineyards Medieval and Renaissance Studies Student Travel and Research Fund was established as an expendable fund at the University of Nebraska Foundation. The fund enables the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program in the College of Arts and Sciences to award students annual stipends of $1,000 to assist them with costs related to travel, research or other academic activities.
“The program is so honored and delighted that James Arthur Vineyards has provided support for our students,” said Carole Levin, the Willa Cather Professor of History and director of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program. “The program looks forward to working with them in many ways.”
Andrea Nichols, a doctoral candidate in history with a minor in medieval and renaissance studies, is the first recipient of the James Arthur Vineyards Award. She plans to use the award to conduct research on the history of books owned by Elizabethan prisoners in the Tower of London, the marks made by the prisoners inside the books and the marks scratched into the prison cell walls. The award will also help with her travel expenses to present her findings at the Gloriana Society Conference in November in London.
“I am very honored to be the first recipient of the James Arthur Vineyards Award in Medieval and Renaissance Studies,” Nichols said. “I look forward even more to visiting the renaissance festival held at the vineyards this month, representing both the program and the award. I am proud to be part of a university and program that supports its students in every way possible.”
UNL’s Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program is participating in the annual renaissance festival held at James Arthur Vineyards on May 21, 2016, from 12 to 8 p.m, with faculty and students performing at 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
The annual event offers visitors the chance to see what life may have been like in the times of castles, knights and damsels in distress. The festival will also feature members of Lincoln’s Society for Creative Anachronism dressed in period costumes; demonstrations of various Renaissance activities; James Arthur Vineyards wines; medieval food selections; and games for children.
James and Barbara Ballard, together with Barbara’s father, James Arthur Jeffers, planted the family’s first grape vines more than 20 years ago, and those vines helped form James Arthur Vineyards in 1996. The vineyards now cover 400 acres and receive visitors from all parts of the world. The Ballards manage the vineyards with Barbara’s parents, James and Neenie Jeffers, and each of the Ballard’s three children, Benjamin, Edyn and Beau, have a wine named after them.
James Arthur Vineyards offers a tasting room, gift shop and hosts many events throughout the year. The family’s most recent venture includes a wine tasting room and store, From Nebraska Gift Shop, located in Lincoln’s Haymarket District.
The gift from James Arthur Vineyards also provides support for Our Students, Our Future, a current initiative to secure $200 million in donations by the end of 2017 to directly benefit students across the University of Nebraska system. Gifts are sought to support scholarships, student programs, student learning facilities and other student-focused priorities on each campus.