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Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:29

A few wrong turns on the way to paradise

I grabbed my guidebook and pen and wrapped my camera in a plastic grocery bag as it started to rain. Stuffing it all into my backpack, I headed down the ancient looking road, nothing but two narrow ruts overgrown by…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:26

The allure of falling water

Although most people are drawn to waterfalls, many pause before they can articulate why. For some, it’s the sound of the water tumbling over the rocks. For others, it’s the sheer beauty or tranquility. “Everybody loves them, but nobody can…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:26

Coffee with poet Bill Everett

Poet Bill Everett, author of Red Clay Blood River, will appear at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 19, as this month’s guest at City Lights Bookstore’s Coffee with the Poet. After a break for lunch, attendees can come back to enjoy…
Michael Beadle and Peter Yurko have published a new photographic history of Waynesville in honor of the town’s bicentennial this year. Their first book signing will be held 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 28, at Blue Ridge Books in downtown…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:25

Authors of two new mountain memoirs speak

Jean Boone Benfield, of Asheville, will read from her new book, Mountain Born: A Recollection of Life and Language in Western North Carolina, at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 20, at City Lights Bookstore in Sylva. The book recalls her…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:23

A grim look at Appalachia

Authors often dig into their childhood to mine for the coal and diamonds of their books. Sometimes they use the picks and shovels of fiction; Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, and Thomas Wolfe come most famously to mind as writers who…
To the Editor: I recently had occasion to take a 10-day camping and motorcycling trip. Maggie Valley was selected as my turn-around destination. The draw to Maggie Valley was great. The potential to ride the Blue Ridge Parkway, which would include…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:21

Nothing good about another Wal-Mart

To the Editor: The dollar signs twinkling in the aldermen’s eyes were glaringly visible at the town of Franklin meeting last night. Clearly the advent of this unnecessary Wal-Mart is a forgone conclusion, evidenced by the limited debate to only…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:21

Honor suffragists by voting in November

To the Editor: In a column dated Aug. 13, Gail Collins of The New York Times reminds us that August marks the 90th anniversary of women being granted the right to vote. She also reminds us that before that August 90…
To the Editor: I commend Rep. Heath Shuler, D-N.C., for his support of H.R. 1586, the “Education, Jobs, and Medicaid Assistance Act.” According to Reuters, this bill provides $26 billion to the states to save the jobs of teachers, firefighters,…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:19

Our thanks to the Haywood health board

To the Editor: Tuesday night (Aug. 10) the Haywood County health board voted to table the amendment (for 90 days) to the health rule that would have allowed for a Class 1 misdemeanor in cases of health rule violations. Many…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:19

Kituwah was the wrong place for development

To the Editor: Some locations just aren’t suitable for development, let alone to be utilized by a major utility project. Kituwah Valley is obviously one.     A portion of Swain County’s citizens are aware, and others should be made aware,…
Edisto, SC – Heat like this has a relentlessness that is unnerving. You try giving it the slip, it follows you like a villain in a dream into the air-conditioned nooks and the sea-breezed crannies of your vacation days. There…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:13

Chevy hybrid put through the paces

When General Motors began looking for a good place to test the power of a new Hybrid car being released this fall, two of WNC’s most notorious curvy roads rose to the top. Both Tail of the Dragon and Hellbender…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:12

Benefit dinner planned for Catman2 shelter

The Balsam Mountain Inn will have a special dinner at 6 and 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 24 to provide donations to the Catman2 Spay and Neuter program. All proceeds from the dinner will defray costs for the shelter and pay…
A crowd of 50 Haywood Community College supporters turned out Monday at a two-and-a-half hour public hearing to urge county commissioners to back a $10.3 million project to build a new Creative Arts building. Artists, gallery owners, craft instructors and…
Not long ago, Waynesville’s historic Frog Level district was fraught with littered beer bottles and an unrelenting band of vagrants. “Sleeping under back decks, defecating on front doorsteps, leaving wine bottles and beer cans,” said Lieutenant Brian Beck. “The creek…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:06

Trying for a lifetime to forgive

Inside Mary J. Messer’s cozy Bargain Books in Waynesville, hundreds of thousands of books are stacked ceiling high. Messer sits herself close to the door so she can greet customers as soon as they walk in and help them navigate…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 20:05

Retired general to speak to Jackson GOP

The Jackson County GOP’s Orville Coward Forum on Public Issues program featuring Retired U.S. Marine Corp Gen. Geoff Higginbotham will be held at 7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 23, at the Sapphire Resort Community Center in Sapphire. Gen. Higginbotham’s service…
State-of-the-art defines just about everything the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians builds these days. Gorgeous architectural lines, native mountain building materials, energy efficient green design — with price tags to match — are hallmarks of everything from a $140 million…
Jackson County launched a comprehensive audit two years ago to make sure businesses are paying enough taxes on all their equipment and machinery. So far, more than 300 have been audited, reaping an additional $90,000 in annual tax revenue. Just…
After being hit with a county audit of its machinery, Jackson Paper factory in Sylva is disputing what it considers a highly inflated tax bill. The business audit claimed Jackson Paper had been underestimating the value of its equipment for…
According to public input so far, a reworked Cowee School could bear close resemblance to another historic Western North Carolina schoolhouse — what is now known as the Stecoah Valley Cultural Arts Center in Graham County. Students at the Cowee…
“Fantasies in Fiber and Fabric,” an exhibition of three-dimensional garments, hats, bags, and one-of-a-kind original dolls by Toni Carroll, will run from Wednesday, Aug. 25, to Saturday, Sept. 18, at Gallery 86 in Waynesville. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to…
Pop-opera performer and 2008 winner of television show “America’s Got Talent,” Neal E. Boyd will open the 2010-11 Galaxy of Stars Series with a performance 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 28, at the Fine and Performing Arts Center on the Western…
Asheville-based mountain and bluegrass group Sons of Ralph will perform a fundraising concert for the Canton Lions Club from 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 28, at the historic Colonial Theatre in downtown Canton. The Sons of Ralph play…
The winner of the Jackson County Green Energy Park 2010 Sculpture Competition is Box of Souls, a contemporary sculpture by artist Bob Doster of Lancaster, S.C. Selected by an independent jury panel, Doster’s piece is a constructed stainless steel box,…
Tuesday, 17 August 2010 19:13

Art and nature merge in outdoor sculpture

Thanks to a group of enthusiastic volunteers from the area, a new Patrick Dougherty sapling sculpture has been constructed at The Bascom Art Center in Highlands. Dougherty constructs outdoor sculptures all over the world and has finished more than 200…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 14:00

The secretive, intelligent and prolific crow

Like most commonly observed objects, crows flit across our field of vision unheeded. Caw-caw-cawing unmusically … flap-flap-flapping over the fields … dressed as if for a funeral … iridescent pieces of black flannel waving in the breeze. We hear and…
Two hikes along the Bartram Trail in Northern Georgia will celebrate roadless areas in the national forests on Sunday, Aug. 15. Both hikes, led by Georgia ForestWatch, will climb to the summit of Rabun Bald, the second highest peak in…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:56

A cool summer job

Internships in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park gave not only students but teachers hands-on experience in science this summer. Teachers and students spent their summer in the field with park rangers, conducting environmental research and outreach with park visitors…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:56

Early registration for Haywood bike race

Take your passion for cycling to a new level during the Greater Haywood County Chamber of Commerce Blue Ridge Breakaway. The first annual Blue Ridge Breakaway, presented by MedWest, will take place August 21, 2010. Slated to be an annual…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:55

Wilderness Therapy program starts at SCC

A new program in Wilderness Therapy at Southwestern Community College caters to a rapidly-expanding sector in the outdoors job field. “In the past 10 years wilderness therapy has became a growing field in this area, and that opens up opportunities…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:53

Mount Lyn Lowry tract on Parkway preserved

A 35-acre tract of forested land next to the Blue Ridge Parkway on the Haywood-Jackson countyline in Balsam has been protected thanks to work of the Conservation Trust of North Carolina and the help of private donors and land conservation…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:52

Canoe Club Cup this weekend

Whitewater clubs from across the Southeast will have their final showdown for the Canoe Club Cup at the Nantahala Outdoor Center Saturday, August 14. A downriver race starts at 10 a.m. Going into the final race of the three-race series,…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:51

Summertime blues

Sometimes I wonder what I’m a gonna do cause there ain’t enough time for all the summertime blues. And by blues I mean all those wonderful summer wildflowers that run the gamut from lavender to blue to violet and purple.…
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:49

Fishing out of water

Gary Mann was working as a mortgage banker in Philadelphia when he read Cold Mountain during a trip to the beach. The book, written by his second cousin Charles Frazier, made his heart ache for Haywood County. “About the second…
Mary J. Messer, author of the newly published Appalachian memoir Moonshiner’s Daughter, will be at Blue Ridge Books at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 14. In the book, Messer wrote about her memories growing up in the Smokies during the…
A special children’s storytime (adults are welcome) devoted to the elk of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will take place at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 14, at City Lights Bookstore in Sylva. In attendance will be Patty Davis…
Tuesday, 10 August 2010 20:28

Memoir project a mixed bag

The design of this book’s cover, in addition to being visually attractive, quite possibly serves as an inadvertent assessment of this book’s contents: Judaculla Rock, in all of its ancient splendor, serves as a backdrop for a diverse collection of…
By Kirkwood Callahan • Guest Columnist Haywood County Commissioners on Aug. 16 will conduct a public hearing on a $12 million, 15-year loan request by Haywood Community College. Most of the loan would finance a new creative arts building on…
To the Editor: The standing-room-only Aug. 2 public hearing of the Franklin Town Board of Alderman regarding the development of a Wal-Mart Supercenter was an object lesson in how politics trumps reason at every turn. It’s bad enough when partisan…
Tuesday, 10 August 2010 20:26

Jackson salary hikes just plain wrong

To the Editor: In response to Jim McCarthy’s Aug. 3 letter, “County pay raises gone afoul,” I want to thank him for his diligence into this matter and support him and the Jackson County Citizen Action Group in their request…
Tuesday, 10 August 2010 20:25

A great place to run a bookstore

Editor’s note: Margaret Osondu’s bookstore was bought out by a competitor, Blue Ridge Books and News. Osondu remained on staff for a few months after the merger, but the bookstore was sold again and Osondu’s position was eliminated. She now…
In this business of covering the news, we often bear witness as apathy wins the day. Citizens sit back and let elected leaders, powerful corporations or a boisterous minority get their way without putting up a fight. That’s why the…
Haywood Community College will offer Medical Office Assistant, Nurse Aide I, and Phlebotomy courses in August through the JobsNOW Program. Students in the programs can obtain a certificate in less than six months that includes workplace readiness skills and completion…
Lake Junaluska Assembly will hold its African-American Clergy Health Summit September 27 to 28. Participants will participate in a self-care covenant workshop designed specifically for African-American clergy, which reflects the health summit’s theme, “Wanting to Heal and Be Healed,” John…
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western North Carolina will hold the 1st Annual Smoky Mountain Cabin Raffle to benefit its efforts to recruit, screen, train and support caring adults who want to make a difference in the life of a…
Neighbor to Family, a nonprofit aimed at improving foster care by keeping siblings together, is offering free classes to potential foster parents. Classes will be held at the Neighbor to Family office beginning with an orientation class at 5:30 p.m.…
Tuesday, 10 August 2010 20:20

Grief support offered to the community

An eight-week grief support group will meet from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesdays from Aug. 24 to Oct. 12 in the second floor classroom at Haywood Regional Health & Fitness Center. The group sessions will be facilitated by Dan Yearick,…