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Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:45

River park would boost visitation, tax revenues

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Kelly Custer has been a lifelong lover of the outdoors, from playing sports as a kid to mountaineering adventures in…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:36

N.C. Arboretum upgrades facilities, increases parking fee

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The N.C. Arboretum in Asheville recently completed several upgrades to its facilities, including conversion to LED lights in all indoor…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:33

Blue Ridge Breakaway off for 2017

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The Blue Ridge Breakaway, which would have celebrated its eighth year in August, has been canceled for this year with…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:29

Polar plunge raises $30,000 education

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The 2017 Polar Plunge Benefit-t-t-ting Kids in the Creek and Environmental Education surpassed its goal to raise $30,600 this year,…
I have files in my computer containing articles I’ve forgotten that I wrote until, by chance, I run across them…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:11

Through the fingertips, echoes the history

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“You know, history becomes personal,” Reggie Harris said to a silent auditorium last Sunday afternoon. “These are our stories, and…
It came out of the blue. Sunday morning. My smart phone dinged next to my bed. I groaned, rolled over…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 18:53

Portrait of WCU’s Belcher unveiled

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A future addition to Western Carolina University’s gallery of presidential portraits was recently unveiled for the first time as the…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 18:43

Burke’s writing shines in The Jealous Kind

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In The Jealous Kind (Simon and Schuster, 2016, 400 pages, $27.99), novelist James Lee Burke drops his readers into Houston,…
Correction: In the March 1 issue, The Smoky Mountain News incorrectly reported that Jackson Neighbors in Need requested funding from the Jackson County Commissioners. The Southwestern Child Development Commission is the entity that requested the funding, as management of Jackson’s…
Waynesville, Sylva and Franklin’s main commercial thoroughfares are getting a makeover in the coming years that could reshape the fabric of these communities for decades to come. The North Carolina Department of Transportation has plans to change the five-lane drags…
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 18:25

Over and out: a Southern Loop retrospective

With a redesign of N.C. 107 officially in the works, the controversial Southern Loop appears to be toast.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:20

A windshield tour of the new 107

Years in the making, design options for a new N.C. 107 in Sylva were recently unveiled by the North Carolina Department of Transportation.
Waynesville, Sylva and Franklin’s main commercial thoroughfares are getting a makeover, reshaping the fabric of these communities for decades to come.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:14

DOT spares part of Walnut Street, for now

A message sent by opponents of the Russ Avenue widening project’s Walnut Street segment appears to have been received loud and clear by state transportation officials.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:13

Canton businesses rebound from crash

A lot is going right in Canton these days, but a driver going left — right into a downtown building — hasn’t dampened downtown’s bustling mood.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:11

Economic diversification continues in Canton

Canton is the archetype of a small southern mill village: the river running through it helps churn the gears of industry while shaded streets host quaint homes where generations of Cantonians have embraced the red, white and blue-collar culture typical…
A collaborative program designed to help students overcome the familial, financial and social obstructions of attending college lacks room to grow and is chronically underfunded, which may hamper efforts to serve more of the county’s most promising students.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:06

Cherokee impeachment efforts will continue

Some tribal members are saying their rights were violated after three pieces of legislation that would curtail impeachment proceedings against Principal Chief Patrick Lambert were denied last week in successive votes during which no discussion was allowed.
A new park in Waynesville’s Pigeon Street community can finally move forward thanks to an agreement reached between Haywood County and the town of Waynesville.
Tuesday, 07 March 2017 17:08

Possible shots fired near Haywood school

At approximately 11:40 a.m., Haywood County Schools Superintendent Anne Garrett received a call from the Haywood Community Learning Center in Waynesville. Learning Center staff reported hearing noises that sounded like gunfire in the distance. The Learning Center went into lockdown,…
Thursday, 02 March 2017 16:16

Cherokee council overturns impeachment veto

Tribal Council will proceed with its efforts to impeach Principal Chief Patrick Lambert following votes to overturn Lambert’s veto of the action and to deny two protests filed against the impeachment.
He’s a respected member of the community, a physician, and we ran into each other unexpectedly.  “I really have to…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:16

For me, there is real joy in solitude

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My favorite time of day is quiet time. Every morning before the hustle and bustle of the day begins, before…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:16

Time to solve problems

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To the Editor: Obviously, the GOP has won control of government for a brief while. The use of such language…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:15

The big lie about immigration

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To the Editor: Everyone wants to feel safe. We want to protect our lives, our property and our jobs. When…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:14

Let’s just get people back to work

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To the Editor: People do not appear to understand how important it is that Obamacare be repealed with no replacement.…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:14

Rep. Mark Meadows has gone missing

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To the Editor: As a constituent of Rep. Mark Meadows, R-Asheville, I am disappointed that he did not use this…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:13

How the mountain towns died

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To the Editor: Once there was once a busy, thriving community nestled in beautiful mountains that surrounded the town on…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:13

Protecting privacy in two steps

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To the Editor: North Carolina state Sen. Jim Davis, Franklin, in a recent newspaper interview indicated he opposes the repeal…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:55

In rural Scotland, lessons on the power of books

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Readers of this column know I am a sucker for books about books. Novels like The Little Paris Bookshop, collections…
News spread fast last week after the Sylva Police Department removed more than 50 spikes from hiking trails at Pinnacle…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:40

Prescribed burns planned for national forests

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Over the next few months, prescribed burns will be conducted on all four of North Carolina’s national forests.
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:36

Grant dollars will help WNC farms grow

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A total of $201,000 has been awarded to 35 farm businesses in Western North Carolina as part of this year’s…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:29

Drought increases in Western N.C.

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Drought is creeping back into the area, with the number of counties designated as experiencing severe drought growing from four…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:27

WNC bike shops get national recognition

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Of 4,000 U.S. bike shops, Motion Makers Bicycles and Bryson City Bicycles were selected as two of the 253 listed…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:25

Restoration and demolition planned at Elkmont

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Work is underway to demolish some buildings and restore others in the Elkmont Historic District of the Great Smoky Mountains…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:21

What me chase?

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Regular readers of “The Naturalist’s Corner” may remember that I’ve decided to keep a 2017 year-list of birds. I noted,…
What would you do? A pile of drugs. A stack of cash. More money than you’ve ever seen in your…
I finally had a moment of silence. After a raucous Saturday night attending the Perpetual Groove show at The Salvage…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:46

HCAC elects new members

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The Haywood County Arts Council has elected three new members to its Board of Directors. The new members, who will…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:41

Triple Threat wins in Asheville

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The Competition Teams of Triple Threat Performing Arts Academy in Sylva traveled to Asheville recently to compete in the regional…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:28

Swain Specialty Clinic opens new space

Swain Specialty Clinic, the longstanding group of specialty physician practices at Swain Community Hospital, has expanded to a new space in the medical office building on the hospital campus on Hospital Hill.
Canton native William McDowell and his wife, celebrity songstress Gladys Knight, have big plans for McDowell’s old alma mater, Reynolds High School.
A dilapidated segregation-era high school in Canton purchased by a former student will become a $5 million community center by 2019 if the Reynolds High School Community Foundation meets its fundraising goals.  SEE ALSO: Q&A: Reynolds Community Center to be a…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:18

National Register possible for Pigeon Street

Special recognition could be coming to an overlooked quarter of Waynesville if a recently submitted grant application receives funding.
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:12

Faces and places from Pigeon Street’s past

Standing in the parking lot of the Jones Temple AME Zion Church on Pigeon Street in Waynesville, Phillip Gibbs doesn’t look 71 years old.
An unusual number of building vacancies has peppered downtown Sylva this winter, and as town leaders have scratched their heads to figure out why, the fee structure of the Tuckaseigee Water and Sewer Authority has come under fire as a…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:07

Haywood school board settles Central lawsuit

The Haywood County Board of Education and local attorney Mark R. Melrose have agreed to a settlement that brings an end to his lawsuit over the shuttering of a Waynesville school that left parents shocked and some students in tears.
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 15:06

Franklin considers room tax hike

All of Franklin’s big plans for improving the appearance and infrastructure around town won’t be possible without some additional revenue.