Tue08042015

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Join officials from the United States Mint and the National Park Service for the launch of the quarter honoring Blue Ridge Parkway at 10 a.m. Thursday, June 25, at Pack Square Park in Asheville. Invited guests include Lt. Gov. Dan…
It’s 6:30 in the morning when 24 hours of travel ends with the plane’s landing in Bolivia, but even through the grogginess it’s not hard to see that we’ve arrived somewhere far, far away from Miami. Snow-crested mountains rise over…
2003 Carrie Blackburn Brown, who eventually founded Kory Wawanaca Children’s Home, graduated from Appalachian State University with degrees in dance and Spanish and a general desire to spend a few months abroad volunteering.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:36

The joy of cooking

That last full day in Tacachia, I didn’t have energy for much besides sinking into my wooden chair while waiting for the onslaught of elementary-aged kids to join us for pre-dinner playtime.
By Katie Reeder • SMN Intern A recurring theme emerged in a congressional oversight hearing last week aimed at shedding light on the questionable tactics and motives of wildlife agencies behind the now-infamous undercover poaching sting known as Operation Something Bruin:…
More than 100 hunters and their supporters packed the historic Haywood County courthouse last week for the latest installment in the ongoing saga over Operation Something Bruin.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:26

Roller derby a big hit in the mountains

By Katie Reeder • SMN Intern No hitting, punching, elbowing or tripping people — and definitely no biting or yelling at the referees. Fourteen-year-old Autumn Pine, or “Fall Out Girl” as she’s known on the track, will quickly tell you there…
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:23

Rep. Meadows ousted from chairmanship

U.S. Rep. Mark Meadows, R-Cashiers, recently paid the political price for not toeing his party line.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:21

Cashiers cell tower application pulled

A week after a contentious planning board meeting discussing the merits of a proposed new cell tower in Cashiers, the company has informed Jackson County that it will be pulling its application.
Questions about how well the Jackson County Permitting and Code Enforcement Department has been executing its responsibilities prompted commissioners to unanimously approve a fixed $15,350 audit contract last week with the national firm Benchmark Planning.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:17

Schools feeding more students for free

Free lunch is becoming a more common phenomenon around Western North Carolina as school systems start adopting a new federal program aiming to increase kids’ access to food in high-poverty areas.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:15

Maggie Valley welcomes new restaurant

By Katie Reeder • SMN Intern  When his restaurant doors are open, Chris Chagnon keeps busy, playing the role of owner, chef and greeter.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:10

Candidates call for a Canton comeback

After two years of getting a feel for Canton politics, two Canton aldermen hope to continue their work for another four years.
The political dynamics in Maggie Valley have definitely changed in the last two years.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015 14:05

Legislature weakens voter ID requirement

In an unexpected turn of events, the North Carolina General Assembly passed legislation last Thursday that will allow people to cast a ballot in 2016 even if they don’t have an acceptable form of identification. 
A bear euthanized following an attack against a backpacker in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was not the right bear, park rangers learned late last week.
A new charter school slated to open in Haywood in August has been scrambling the past few weeks to find somewhere to put kids and teachers after its initial facility plan fell through.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 15:43

Trumpet vine is tenacious and beautiful

It’s mid-June again … the time of the year when certain plants can be relied upon to do their thing in our yard and on the decks that enclose the house on three sides. Yuccas, oak-leaf hydrangeas, spiderworts, coral vines,…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 15:28

Unveiling Horace Kephart

A pair of programs about Horace Kephart, an adopted son of the Smokies who captured the culture of mountaineers in the early 1900s in writing and championed the establishment of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, will explore the life…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 15:28

Swain gets second farmers market day

The Swain County Farmers Market is branching out, this week launching a second market day 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Sept. 16.  The market, located at the barn on Island Street in downtown Bryson City, sells produce, nursery plants,…
Seven Cherokee cyclists from North Carolina are in the midst of a 950-mile bike ride to Tahlequah, Oklahoma, an annual ride commemorating the forced removal of the Cherokee people along the Trail of Tears in 1839.  “The ‘Remember the Removal’…
A program featuring scaly reptiles as the stars will return to the Jackson County Public Library at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday, June 25.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 15:25

Bird-banders wanted

Volunteers are needed for a summer monitoring project involving up-close contact with birds.
The Women’s Work Festival in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will give a glimpse into the historical roles rural women held in their families and communities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 20.
There was no doubt about how the Smoky Mountains got their name as day dawned on the Friends of the Smokies’ planned hike to Hemphill Bald. Sky seemed to meet earth as the carpool headed up the mountain from Maggie…
It is mid-June in England, and the skies are a brilliant blue. Sunshine spills on the street and the clipped green lawns of homes and parks. A breeze stirs the leaves of the trees, and when you are in the…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:49

‘Dancing With The Stars’ at Harrah’s

The live stage production of “Dancing With The Stars: Live!” will hit the stage at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 27, at Harrah’s Cherokee. Following a sold-out winter tour and the 10th Anniversary Season of ABC’s hit show “Dancing with the…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:49

Green Energy Park summer art camp

There will be a summer art camp held June 22-26 at the Jackson County Green Energy Park in Dillsboro. Ages 4-6 will be 10 a.m. to noon, with ages 7-10 at 1 to 3 p.m. Campers will explore various creative…
“An Appalachian Evening,” a summer bluegrass/Americana weekly concert series, will return to the Stecoah Valley Cultural Arts Center in Robbinsville. The 2015 series will include The Snyder Family Band July 19, The Walking Roots Band July 25, Balsam Range Aug.…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:44

Bryson City craft beer, barbecue

A “BBQ & Brews Dinner Train” will be departing at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 27, at the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad depot in Bryson City.
The 109th Canton Labor Day Festival will be held Sept 5-7 at the Canton Rec Park and Sorrells Street Park in downtown.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:41

Fiddler brings Americana to Marianna

Americana fiddler Alma Russ will perform at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 25, at the Marianna Black Library in Bryson City.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:39

This must be the place

There is a lot of truth to it. “Money can’t buy happiness,” the old adage goes. It’s a sentiment that has permeated through society for generations. And while most of us are aware of the phrase, how many of us…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:36

A world of art in your backyard

Coming into its fourth year, Cullowhee Mountain ARTS has grown into a vast array of workshops, one that seamlessly brings together professional artists from around the country. It is a program aiming to nurture creativity at every skill level, where…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:33

Do people really believe this stuff?

To the Editor: Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with all the scientific discoveries made on almost a daily basis, some of which are jaw dropping. Earlier, we learned about the goat that was put in jail for car theft…
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:32

Reacting to changing climate of medicine

To the Editor: As a pediatrician, it has been my privilege to serve the families of Western North Carolina for over 20 years. My colleagues and I are honored to be invited into your lives, to share your greatest joys,…
I remember someone once telling me that all the seemingly trivial, decidedly unimportant choices you make every day prepare you for when the big thing comes along and the right decision might have life-changing consequences. Do right everyday for the…
A new charter school opening in Haywood County has downwardly revised its projected student count for the coming school year.
By Katie Reeder • SMN Intern  The Canton Planning Board is considering a building maintenance ordinance that would regulate downtown commercial properties and hold owners to certain standards.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:14

Fireworks on for Sylva

For the first time in seven years, Sylva residents will be able to watch Fourth of July festivities from downtown.
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 14:12

Proposed Cashiers cell tower draws debate

A proposal to put in a new cell tower a half-mile from the Cashiers crossroads has sparked heated debate between long-time neighbors Mark Zachary and Rick Barrs, but the outcome of an upcoming hearing on the issue will affect more…
After nearly four years of trying, a Charlotte-based development company has gotten the OK to build a high-end student housing complex in Cullowhee. 
Business is booming for a Waynesville factory that mixes and packages Epsom salt. Giles Chemical has doubled its employees over the past decade to 150 and plans to build a 35,000-square-foot warehouse to accommodate its growing trade.
One deputy is under investigation while another has resigned after allegations surfaced regarding excessive force being used on inmates at the Swain County Jail.
Macon County commissioners weren’t exactly sure what to expect when they saw Thing 1 and Thing 2 sitting in the front row at the proposed budget public hearing.
By Katie Reeder • SMN Intern  The North Carolina State Board of Elections held a public hearing last Thursday to allow people to comment on the proposed rules for North Carolina’s new voter identification laws. The hearing was the seventh of…
The merger of Lake Junaluska with the town of Waynesville cleared a critical milestone in the N.C. General Assembly last week and finally seemed headed for passage, but was sidelined again at the 11th hour.
Rangers in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park hope a bear they caught and killed last week is the same one that attacked a teenager who was sleeping in a hammock.
Recently recovered from rotator cuff surgery, Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher hasn’t popped a single prescription pain pill since the operation. Instead, he’s been using a combination of ibuprofen and acetaminophen, over-the-counter meds that don’t pose the same risks of…
The clock is ticking for Ghost Town in the Sky entertainment park in Maggie Valley to get its humble trio of kiddie rides inspected and permitted before its target opening day of July 2.