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Wednesday, 15 February 2017 14:58

Franklin hears proposal to one-lane Main Street

Franklin’s town board has been hearing different proposals for improving Main Street’s parking and appearance — and the latest proposal included turning it into a one-lane thoroughfare.
A proposed comprehensive plan to improve Franklin’s pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure includes more than 20 recommended projects to fix the town’s sidewalks, increase connections to the greenway and make downtown more navigable for visitors and residents alike.
Wednesday, 15 February 2017 14:54

New school opening in Sylva

Plans are crystallizing for a new middle school in Jackson County, but it’s a race against the clock for Western Carolina University and Jackson County Public Schools to meet the deadline for opening set by the General Assembly. 
Wednesday, 15 February 2017 14:53

Tourism tax hike for Haywood is DOA

Haywood County Tourism Development Authority Executive Director Lynn Collins has been making the rounds like a travelling saleswoman lately — pitching a room occupancy tax increase to anyone who will listen.
Wednesday, 15 February 2017 14:50

Raleigh Roundup: bobcats and beers edition

With the new session of the North Carolina Legislature underway, a flurry of bills has been filed in both the House and Senate — more than 180 of them — as of Feb. 14. 
A newly approved expansion project at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort was nearly derailed when a resolution to kill the project was narrowly rejected in Tribal Council this month, with the final vote an even 50-50.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 17:19

Fire review underway in the Smokies

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A team of fire experts is assembling at Great Smoky Mountains National Park to conduct a review of the 2016…
If you’d polled Kimberley Brookshire’s friends a couple years ago, they’d likely have said the chances were slim to none…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 17:09

Haywood Waterways recognizes water champions

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Haywood’s biggest water champions of 2016 have been recognized by the Haywood Waterways Association, highlighting accomplishments from youth education to…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 17:09

New easements conserve hundreds of acres

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More than 340 acres in Jackson and Cherokee counties have been conserved, thanks to conservation easements through Mainspring Conservation Trust.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:59

The copper run in the Great Smokies

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The worldwide annual production of “high conductivity copper” had by 1899 risen to 470,000 tons, of which 300,000 tons were…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:45

Please take time to give feedback

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Many thanks to The Smoky Mountain News for the recent article by Becky Johnson ( to update the citizens of…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:44

Defining pro-choice, pro-life

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To the Editor: Unfortunately, anti-abortion supporters named themselves pro-life, thereby labeling pro-choice supporters pro-death. This serves to demonize the pro-choice…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:44

NATO is too important to scrap

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To the Editor: Our fathers and grandfathers fought in World War II to save the world from Nazi domination. Over…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:43

The world joins in supporting democracy

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To the Editor: The Constitution guarantees the right to assembly, and Americans continue to exercise that right throughout history. In…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:32

Two essays that left a lasting influence

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They were both quiet, their voices barely audible even during roll call, and absolutely silent otherwise. Even as a new…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:29

New commissioner stumbles out of the gate

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Brandon Rogers almost certainly disappointed — and surprised — many of his supporters during Monday’s Haywood County Commissioners meeting. Apparently…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:17

Ben-Hur’s long history is captivating

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Some authors and critics sniff at best-sellers. I suppose the idea is that a novel appealing to so many thousands…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 16:01

HART welcomes Arnette, Dykes

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The board of directors of the Haywood Arts Regional Theatre (HART) in Waynesville held its annual meeting recently in the…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:57

Feet in the sand, not your head

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How could something so beautiful be so ugly? Standing at the edge of the ocean on the Gulf Coast of…
They wanted to shake things up. In 1971, a young Sam Bush aimed to create a new kind of bluegrass…
Within the residential real estate industry lies an interesting contradiction.  SEE ALSO:• Haywood housing demand is high but inventory is low• Macon making sustainable growth in real estate market• Real estate rebounding in Jackson• Mountain cabins in high demand in Swain
Brian Cagle is vice president and managing broker at Beverly-Hanks in Waynesville. Beverly Hanks doesn’t sell real estate, however; Beverly-Hanks sells a lifestyle.
It hasn’t been a quick or easy recovery, but Macon County real estate is back on the rise and Realtors see that trend continuing into 2017.
With the recession nearly a decade in the rearview mirror, the real estate market is once more robust in Jackson County — especially in the southern end of the county around Cashiers.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:16

Mountain cabins in high demand in Swain

Sherry and Gary Patterson vacationed in Bryson City for the first time about 20 years ago and now they can’t get enough of it.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:13

Bryson Senior Living breaks ground

Affinity Living Group held a groundbreaking ceremony recently for its new assisted living community, Bryson Senior Living. Pictured moving the ceremonial first shovelfuls of earth are Denis Rainey, Affinity Vice President of Operations; (from left) Swain County Commissioners David Monteith,…
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:12

Proposed room tax hike already in jeopardy

A renewed effort to increase Haywood County’s room occupancy tax from 4 to 6 percent has already run into almost as much opposition as it has in previous years, calling into question its chances of passage in the state legislature. 
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:10

Shining Rock receives grant for outdoor classes

Shining Rock Classical Academy will be able to construct an outdoor classroom on its campus this year thanks to a $10,000 grant from Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina — the state’s leading parental school choice advocacy organization.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:08

Recreation improvements coming to Waynesville

The active, outdoorsy lifestyle favored by residents of Western North Carolina has long been fostered by the Town of Waynesville, but if all goes according to recently released plans, it’s about to get much, much better.
Haywood County Tax Collector Mike Matthews has been a lightning rod for controversy since before he narrowly defeated veteran incumbent David Francis in the 2014 election.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:02

Swain hospital: ‘ER is open 24/7’

Swain Community Hospital is still trying to overcome misperceptions in the community regarding its recent emergency department changes as well as the local medical services available to residents. 
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 15:00

FBI raids Qualla Housing Authority

A team of 26 FBI agents descended on Cherokee Feb. 2, filling the Qualla Housing Authority building and wheeling entire filing cabinets, as well as papers and hard drives, into a U-Haul parked to the side of the building.
Wednesday, 08 February 2017 14:58

Cherokee council votes to impeach Chief Lambert

To the boos of an outspoken audience, the Cherokee Tribal Council voted 9-3 Feb. 2 to begin impeachment proceedings against Principal Chief Patrick Lambert.
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:40

Newspapers with real reporters and editors matter

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By Frank Queen • Guest Columnist I was surrounded by newspapers growing up. Dad worked for the government in the…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:37

A once happy week now darkened

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We leave for Disney World this weekend.  I should be more excited, but with all that’s going on in our…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:37

Why rush to repeal ACA?

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To the Editor: I am writing to express my concern about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, or “Obamacare.”…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:36

Internet availability a problem in WNC

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To the Editor: Regarding Scott McLeod’s piece last week about the availability of internet service (, it is a big…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:36

No room for alternative news

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“Ignorance and misinformation, if allowed to prevail in foreign policy, handicaps the country’s security. In a world of complex and…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:35

Trump’s bigotry exposed in immigration order

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To the Editor: The very first section of President Donald Trump’s order banning immigrants from seven nations refers to the…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:32

Hillbilly Elegy author can’t shake the label

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“Southern Appalachia is a region about which, perhaps, more things are known that are not true than any other part…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:24

Twice threatened

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In the land of the noonday sun, there lives a noonday snail. The noonday globe snail, Petera clarkia Nantahala is…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:20

Drought on the retreat

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A week of rainy weather put drought on the retreat, with the classification of extreme drought absent from North Carolina…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:18

Grant to help kids explore the Great Smokies

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A $20,000 Google Field Trip Days grant will help the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont give more kids and…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 16:04

FAQ: The effects of WNC’s 2016 fire season

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Did the fires hurt wildlife?  Prescribed burning is often used as a tool to benefit wildlife by regenerating their habitat,…
It’s a warmer-than-average January day, the contours of the mountains visible from the highway beneath a thin covering of leafless…
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 15:56

Haywood man arrested for murder

Wayne Littrell, 72, of the Coleman Mountain community of Haywood County, was arrested Sunday, Jan. 29, and charged with the murder of his wife Mary Littrell, 66, at their home on Hawk Mountain Road.
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 15:56

‘Indivisible’ citizens group forms in Sylva

There will be a meeting of the Indivisible Sylva NC group at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7, at the Jackson County Public Library.
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 15:54

WNC progressive group gaining momentum

What started as a small group of like-minded people helping each other deal with aftermath of Election Day has now morphed into a progressive political action team with more than 400 supporters.
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 15:52

Restoring hope for a community

Until last year, the old house languishing on Academy Street on Bryson City United Methodist Church’s property was seen as a nuisance.