The North Carolina Visitor Center




Chowan University



Office of University Relations

Joshua E. Barker, Director of University Relations

Telephone:  252-398-6319               Fax:  252-398-3204            Email:

SeniorFest 2011 at Chowan University

Featuring Dennis the Menace Cartoonist Marcus Hamilton, Rev. Roger Hensley and more!

University Relations

February 22, 2011


MURFREESBORO, NC – Founded in 1848 in the heart of the historic Inner Banks community of Murfreesboro in northeastern North Carolina, Chowan University has a long tradition of giving back to its region through a variety of programs. To assist the population of Baby Boomers and beyond, Chowan University proudly invites the public to attend its fifth annual SeniorFest 2011 on March 31st – featuring award-winning Dennis the Menace Cartoonist Marcus Hamilton, Christian Humorist Rev. Roger Hensley, informative breakout sessions, lunch, music and more.

Marcus Hamilton was born in Lexington, NC and graduated from Atlantic Christian College in Wilson, majoring in Commercial Art. In 1965, he and his wife, Kaye, moved to Charlotte where he worked in the Art Department of WBTV. In 1972, Hamilton began a career as a freelance illustrator doing artwork for such publications as Golf Digest and Saturday Evening Post. But in 1993, his career and life took an abrupt turn when he responded to a TV interview in which Hank Ketcham, creator of Dennis the Menace, suggested that he would like to retire someday. Over a three year period, Mr. Ketcham trained Hamilton to take over drawing the daily, Monday through Saturday, cartoon panel which is syndicated worldwide. In May of 2005, Marcus Hamilton was awarded the National Cartoonists Society’s Annual Award for Best Newspaper Panel.


Christian humorist Roger Hensley is a long-time Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Jonesville, NC. Hensley has led several senior adult retreats to Fort Caswell, NC through the North Carolina Baptist State Convention. Hensley, a former Chowan student from 1982, also illustrated cartoons for the Biblical Recorder.


The senior adult event, sponsored by the Chowan University Office of Church Relations and the North Carolina Baptist Foundation, will begin with registration at 9:30 am in the historic 1851 McDowell Columns Building. Following a musical performance by Chowan’s own Josiah Antill, Hamilton will give his featured presentation. Hensley will give his featured presentation after lunch and following a performance by the Chowan Singers.

Between presentations, SeniorFest will host several break-out sessions focused for senior adults. Dr. Brent Chafin from the Pain Care & Rehabilitation Center of the Roanoke Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie will speak on Pain Care Intervention. Tom Denton from the NCBF will speak on Estate Planning from a Christian Perspective. Chowan University Ministers Rev. Mari Wiles and Rev. Jennifer Janney will speak on the life-affirming mission work of Chowan’s Global Gospel Students, and Betsy McSwain, Minister/Spouse Support Consultant for the Women’s Missionary Union, will share Mission Opportunities for Senior Adults.

There is a $12.00 registration fee per person to cover the programs and lunch, and an RSVP is required by Thursday, March 24th. For more information on SeniorFest 2011, contact Chowan University’s Director of Church Relations, Dr. Jarrett Banks, at or (252) 398-6317.


Chowan University, a Christian liberal arts university founded in 1848, enrolls more than 1200 students each year and is located in the Historic Inner Banks community of Murfreesboro in Northeastern North Carolina. The university is in close proximity to the Outer Banks and Hampton Roads Virginia. Chowan’s park-like campus features 300 acres including Lake Vann, the beloved “Squirrel Park” and the original McDowell Columns Building, erected in 1851 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Accredited with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Chowan offers over 80 undergraduate academic programs among The School of Arts and Sciences, The School of Education and The School of Business, and offers Masters Degrees through the School of Graduate Studies. Several departments are also individually accredited, such as Teacher Education Program’s accreditation by NCDPI and NCATE, as well as the Music program’s institutional accreditation by NASM. Chowan offers 13 varsity programs in the CIAA conference as well as co-ed cheerleading, with dual-affiliation in the NCAA D-II and NCCAA.


For more information about Chowan University, visit or call 1-888-4-CHOWAN.




Photo Caption: Marcus Hamilton, daily illustrator of Dennis the Menace, will be one of the special guest speakers for Chowan University’s Senior Adult event, SeniorFest 2011.


Photo Caption: Registration begins at 9:30 am on March 31st in the McDowell Columns Building, erected in 1851 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, at the heart of Chowan University campus.


Photo Caption: Join Chowan University for food, fun, and fellowship at the fifth annual SeniorFest 2011 in Murfreesboro, NC.