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Wednesday, 25 February 2015 15:01

Hike explores Smokemont

The season’s first hike in Friends of the Smokies’ “Classic Hikes of the Smokies” series will explore Smokemont Loop Trail in a 6.2-mile hike led by hiking guide and author Danny Bernstein.
As Paul Carlson tooled out of downtown Franklin, houses faded into rolling hayfields, and the Little Tennessee River soon took up its flank position along the edge of N.C. 28.
History will no doubt remember Paul Carlson as one of the great visionaries of our time in Western North Carolina. As the founder and long time director of the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee retires from his leadership role,…
Western Carolina University history department faculty members Sue Abram and Andrew Denson are overseeing a public history project that recently received a $5,000 development grant from the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Partnership.
Tuesday, 24 February 2015 16:06

WCU to host tourism conference

The impact of successful festivals and events on the economy of the 26 westernmost counties of North Carolina will be the subject of a daylong tourism industry conference from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, in the Liston…
Tuesday, 24 February 2015 16:04

Catch the Spirit holds mural fundraiser

“Golden Threads,” a dramatic 24-foot art mural created by Doreyl Ammons Cain for the Shindig on the Green in Asheville, is currently seeking donors to make its installment a reality.
Tuesday, 24 February 2015 16:01

Hayes brings country hits to Franklin

Country star Wade Hayes will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 7, at the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin.
Tuesday, 24 February 2015 15:56

This must be the place

I was a weird kid growing up. And, in many ways, I’m even weirder as an adult. Since day one, being weird is something I embrace. I’m proud of it, even though I don’t give it much thought, because I…
Acclaimed bluegrass act Balsam Range will welcome the Snyder Family Band as part of their Winter Concert Series at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 7, at the Colonial Theatre in Canton.
Tuesday, 24 February 2015 15:51

Colonial Theatre enters third act

When he thinks of the Colonial Theatre, Zeb Smathers sees untapped potential. “There are so many things it can used for — movies, concerts, plays, school productions,” he said. “It’s been a goal of mine from early on to use…
Wednesday, 25 February 2015 21:16

Elections embezzlement case lands on DA’s desk

It could be just a matter of months before District Attorney Ashley Welch decides whether to press charges in a year-old case of alleged embezzlement at the Macon County Board of Elections, but the investigation still has legs on the…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:40

Beware the company you keep

To the Editor: Jackson County Commissioners, I want to congratulate you on the entertaining meeting on Jan. 29 and your resolution to support the “Move to Amend” proposed 28th amendment to the U. S. Constitution. Surely you know of at…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:40

In my world, estimates are different from facts

To the Editor: Ed Morris’s recent letter to this newspaper criticized a letter I had written to The Franklin Press regarding a front page article they published. That article used information from a report titled “The Economic and Employment Costs of…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:40

Use Lent to try a meat-free diet

To the Editor: This Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day period before Easter, when many Christians abstain from animal foods in remembrance of Jesus’ 40 days of fasting in the desert before launching his ministry.  But meat-free Lent…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:39

Appreciate community support for 5K run

To the Editor: On behalf of Dryman’s Chapel United Methodist Church please allow me to express thanks and grateful appreciation for the community and sponsor support we received during our Love Is in the Air 5K Run/Walk to raise funds…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:39

Let’s re-think attitudes toward wood

To the Editor: Have you ever heard the expression “waiting for the other shoe to drop”? I thought of it as I was reading all the recent news and opinions about the U.S. Forest Service studies on wood harvesting in…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:39

Does Maggie Valley need 200-foot cross?

To the Editor: At first blush the idea of a 200-foot cross seemed kind of cool. It could make Maggie Valley famous for having the tallest cross.  But I’ve been mulling it around in my head because there’s just something…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:37

The sweet dreams of snow days

“Dad, do you think we’ll get out of school tomorrow?” My son, Jack, is standing in the doorway of our bedroom. Sunday night is bearing down again, and the weekend forecasts have been taunting him and his sister with the…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:34

For some, facts just don’t matter

“It is an Internet Age paradox: We have more information than ever before and yet, seem to know less. Indeed, in the Internet Age, it can be fairly said that nothing is ever truly, finally knowable, authoritative testimony always subject…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:21

Countin’ in the cold

I had originally intended to spend today (Monday, Feb. 16) doing a couple of short surveys for the annual Great Backyard Bird Count. But Sunday morning amid more and more (and more and more dire) weather forecasts warning of some…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:12

State bill seeks to strike down fracking rules

Bills to get rid of the oil and gas extraction rules developed by the N.C. Mining and Energy Commission have been introduced in both the House and Senate of the N.C. General Assembly, with Rep. Joe Sam Queen, D-Waynesville, signing…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:10

N.C. Wildlife Federation wins $30K grant

A $30,000 grant from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation will help the N.C. Wildlife Federation further its mission of conserving and protecting wildlife and their habitats. 
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:09

New Satulah trail in the works

Learn about the Highland Plateau Greenway’s vision to build a public trail to the top of Satulah Mountain at a public meeting held 4 to 5:30 p.m. Monday, March 2, at the Highlands Civic Center.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:08

Game on (the table) at fundraising dinner

An annual Wild Game Dinner hosted by the Wildlife Club at Haywood Community College will serve up a meal of home-cooked wild game dishes while raising money for the student group.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:06

Mark your calendar for Spring

The weather is wintry, but spring is just around the corner. Mark your calendar for some of these upcoming springtime events.
A “buy local” directory for wood-related products from Western North Carolina is looking for more businesses, artisans and organizations to add to its listings before launching a searchable database version of the directory later this year.
Stepping into Kirk Wall’s custom-carpentered, immaculately decorated mountaintop home, I couldn’t help but wonder if I’d knocked on the wrong door. Hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, breakable horse figurines and pieces of pottery — not to mention, only trace amounts of…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:46

Larry Brown earns his spot in Southern pantheon

One of my bookshelves is reserved for books that I have not read, but that I am saving for some special event. What I want is the pleasure of reading without a deadline hanging over my head. I actually buy books…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:30

Guest travel bloggers needed

Haywood Tourism Development Authority is currently looking for volunteer guest travel bloggers to contribute articles to its Homegrown Blog on
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:30

HCC to offer sound recording, engineering

Haywood Community College’s Workforce Continuing Education Creative Arts Department will offer an Introduction to Sound Recording/Engineering class on Mondays from March 2 through May 18.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:27

Boojum to open Waynesville taproom

Boojum Brewing Company, Waynesville’s newest (and fourth) brewery, will officially open its downtown taproom at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at 50 North Main Street.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:25

One-man show coming to WCU

The Galaxy of Stars Series will present the one-man show “Man 1, Bank 0” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:23

‘Robin Hood’ radio production

Presented as a live radio broadcast onstage, “Robin Hood – The Legacy” will be held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 26, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:22

Wills to bring Nashville hits to Franklin

Multi-platinum country music artist Mark Wills will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, at the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:20

Willie Nelson to play Harrah's

Legendary outlaw country singer Willie Nelson will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, Harrah’s Cherokee.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 15:19

This must be the place

Face-to-face communication is a lost art. Besides the actual act of writing, my favorite part of being a journalist is conducting the interview. Everyday, I meet up with complete strangers and immerse myself in their lives. It is a surreal…
Just mere feet from a bustling South Main Street in Waynesville resides a cocoon of creativity.  With a steady stream of vehicles rushing by, one enters Jenny Bucker’s studio as if to step into a portal of a calmer ambiance.…
The Sylva Garden Club is raising money to build a small pavilion in Bicentennial Park, a small green space located off Keener Street near the historic Jackson County Courthouse and library complex.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:59

Murphy casino project on track for summer

When the Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise board opted to get rid of the project manager position for its Murphy casino construction project last year, some skepticism ensued as to whether the project could still continue on time and within budget.
Cherokee is one step closer to having an Olympic-sized outdoor pool following Tribal Council’s unanimous vote this month to purchase property for the project. “We have an identified site with contract negotiations with those landowners,” said Jason Lambert, director of…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:57

Highlands lowering lake for major repairs

Lake Sequoyah in Highlands is currently being drained in preparation for completing about $3 million in repairs to the dam.
Maggie Valley is in limbo over a proposed mountaintop cross after learning last week the state won’t help sort out how high the cross could legally be under the North Carolina ridge law.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:50

YMCA summer camp coming to Swain

YMCA of Western North Carolina is getting ready to break ground on Camp Watia, a summer camp in Swain County to serve children in the region.  Ken and Nancy Glass of Buncombe County purchased the pristine 900 acres near Fontana…
Western Carolina University will now be subject to Jackson County’s revised subdivision ordinance, the planning board decided last week. Technically, the university has been included under the regulations since the planning board revised them last year, but that implication of…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:48

WCU to end off-campus busing

Once the spring 2015 semester wraps up at Western Carolina University, off-campus students will no longer have the option of catching the bus to classes.  While enrollment at the university — and development around it — is increasing, ridership on…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:47

Haywood notifies clients of missing data report

Haywood County Health and Human Services Agency recently notified clients that an accounts receivable report went missing from a billing office several months ago.
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:46

Canton second guesses proposed Labor Day changes

Canton will continue researching recommended changes to the town’s Labor Day celebration despite several aldermen expressing reservations about changing the venue and recruiting a national headlining band for a Sunday night concert. After mulling over proposed changes presented at a…
The Haywood County School Board followed the recommendation of school cafeteria workers this month and voted to continue buying cleaning chemicals exclusively from a national company, despite promising a local supplier that he would have a chance to bid on…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:43

Nonprofit manufacturer expanding in Sylva

Webster Enterprises is settling into its newly leased building on Harold Street in Sylva following the town board’s unanimous vote to approve a conditional-use permit for the nonprofit.  “We were delighted about it,” said Gene Robinson, executive director of Webster…
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 14:37

Blood donors show loyalty to Red Cross

The new contract Mission Health signed with The Blood Connection for blood products will affect the American Red Cross’ collections in Western North Carolina, but Red Cross employees and volunteers hope donors will remain loyal to their cause.