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Several months ago, I reviewed Daniel Woodrell’s Winter’s Bone, and received an unusual number of responses from readers. In general, the responses were positive. However, there were a few readers who found Woodrell’s description of Appalachian (Ozark) culture distorted and…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 03:18

We need to stop the Great Outdoor Giveaway

Over 100 years ago, Republican President Theodore Roosevelt said to the American people: Of all the questions which can come before this nation, short of the actual preservation of its existence in a great war, there is none which compares…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 03:17

Protesting against war remains important

To the Editor: Thanks for the kind words you have for me and our peace vigilers in last week’s issue (“A reminder of the inhumanity that is war,” Jan. 18 Smoky Mountain News). However, it was not I standing alone…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 03:16

WNC Alliance also a Needmore partner

To the Editor: As Quintin Ellison notes in her article, “By Land and By Water— (Jan. 18 Smoky Mountain News) the “crowning success” of the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee was undoubtedly the preservation of the 4,500-acre Needmore Tract…
When the legendary — and former — Penn State University football coach Joe Paterno died on Sunday morning, the first thought I had was of Oedipus the King. Like Paterno, Oedipus was much beloved by his subjects and, like Paterno,…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:37

Selfish Me and Harried Woman

“Why didn’t you tell me?” the woman — wild-eyed, disbelieving and somewhat hysterically — called over to where I was standing slightly hidden behind the next set of gas pumps. Why, indeed? I asked myself before replying truthfully that I’d…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:36

New LTLT an important voice for the region

Western North Carolina residents will be well served by the merger of the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee and the Little Tennessee Watershed Association. The merger undoubtedly makes sense from an administrative and fund-raising perspective, something employees and board…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:35

Job help streamlined by SCC and JobLink

Southwestern Community College and Macon County JobLink Career Center have joined forces to provide a “one-stop shop” for people looking for a job and want to enhance their career skills. The new initiative will enhance the region’s ability to develop…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:34

New accounting firm opens in Franklin

The Franklin Area Chamber of Commerce recently held a ribbon cutting for Carla L. Haire, a certified public accountant who has opened a tax and accounting firm. Haire’s business is located at 17 Smoky Mountain Drive and shares the building…
The Greater Haywood County Chamber of Commerce will hold their annual elected officials reception from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 7, at the Laurel Ridge Country Club in Waynesville. This is a chamber-member exclusive event. State senators, state…
In town and county governments there are those dedicated members of the public who speak out and stand up to help hold elected officials accountable … and then there are gadflies. Marie Leatherwood, with a history of flinging wild accusations…
Gov. Beverly Perdue laid out a proposal last week to increase the state’s sales tax by three-quarters of a cent to fund education. The move would generate an estimated $850 million for the state’s public schools, community colleges and universities…
A member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians is suing the tribe over sewage overflows onto her property, which she says poses a health threat to her family. Linda Lambert filed a suit against the tribe in May 2011…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:27

Occupy protesters rally in Bryson City

Western North Carolina occupiers “took possession” last week of the Federal Building in Bryson City where federal court is held to protest a 2010 Supreme Court ruling that declared corporations are people. “I’ll believe corporations are people when Texas executes…
Sylva will likely hire a private company in Texas to process daily pawnshop and second-hand dealers’ receipts instead of those tasks being handled in-house by town police. Police Chief Davis Woodard has recommended the shift to LeadsOnline, which would cost…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:25

Conrad Burrell steps down as SCC leader

Macon County resident and longtime educator Terry Bell will take over as chairman of Southwestern Community College’s Board of Trustees. He replaces Conrad Burrell, who served as the board’s chair for 11 years. “That’s a long time,” said Burrell, the…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:25

Smoky Mountain Living seeks spring photos

Smoky Mountain Living magazine prominently features images from across the southern Appalachians in each edition. Photo essays adhere to the issue’s overall theme. The next issue of Smoky Mountain Living will focus on all things green. Whether it is youth…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:24

Franklin walk benefits Cystic Fibrosis

A “Great Strides” walk will take place in Franklin, with a kickoff party and information session at 6 p.m., Feb. 3, at the Fun Factory. The walk is part of a national effort that generates funding to support lifesaving cystic…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:23

Sustainable tourism subject of seminar

A seminar on sustainable tourism is set for 2 p.m., Jan. 31, at the First Presbyterian Church in Highlands, in Coleman Hall. Alex Naar, director of outreach at the Center for Sustainable Tourism at East Carolina University will lead the…
Finding a new home for the Folkmoot sculpture in downtown Waynesville has taken a new turn. The Waynesville public art commission initially proposed moving the art piece across the street — from its current spot in front of the new…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:19

Tug-of-war over Cherokee sign takes a new turn

Maggie Valley has been rallying allies in its fight to save a small but perhaps precious sliver of its struggling tourism trade: pass-thru business from travelers en route to Cherokee. A highway sign currently proclaims Maggie Valley as the proper…
A student club at Western Carolina University is defending its decision to pair a drag show featuring “kings” and “queens” from across the state with a get-out-the-vote drive aimed at defeating a proposed state constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:16

Free self-defense class for women

A free self-defense and personal-safety seminar for women is scheduled from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17 at Basulto Academy of Defense in Waynesville. Armando Basulto, who has over 30 years experience in teaching martial arts and self-defense,…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:16

Help neighbors during disasters

American Red Cross Disaster Relief Training will take place from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Jan. 28 in Waynesville for those interested in becoming part of the Disaster Action Team serving Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties. This course will…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:15

Sylva woman regional Teacher of the Year

Edith Callahan, a health science teacher at Smoky Mountain High School in Sylva, was recently named Teacher of the Year for Western North Carolina. Callahan will be considered for North Carolina Teacher of the Year, along with seven other regional…
Thursday, 26 January 2012 01:15

Exploring the ethical issues and aging

Learn about the ethical issues faced when loved ones age at a Feb. 6, 1 p.m. workshop at Haywood Community Connections. Dr. Lisa Verges will discuss the fine art of gracefully navigating difficult issues with relatives who are getting older,…
For most boys, Superman and Batman were their heroes; for Bob Plott, his ancestors were super men. As he grew up in Haywood County, Plott would spend hours listening to his elders tell stories about the old-timers and life in…
A compromise has emerged in a fight over the historic McCoy truss bridge, one that would keep the old bridge in place for foot traffic while building a newer, bigger bridge alongside it for vehicles. But Macon residents who have…
A mentally ill man got a $22,500 settlement in a lawsuit against a Bryson City police officer who hit him multiple times with a baton and sprayed him with pepper spray. The settlement came more than three years after the…
Earl Bradley watches from the parking lot of his auto repair shop as a tractor trailer struggles for 15 minutes to align itself with Premier Chemicals’ loading dock across the street in Waynesville. Bradley has videotaped the trucks for months,…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:40

Marianna Black Library hosts anime club

Anime returns to its regular schedule of two shows a month starting this Saturday, Jan. 28, at the Bryson City library. The morning session, from 11 a.m. to 1:10 p.m., features several popular Japanese TV programs. Then, after a brief…
The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad will run a PEANUTS™ Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown Excursion and Valentine Sweetheart Train at 11 a.m. on Feb. 11. The train will depart from Bryson City depot, travel along the Tuckasegee River to Dillsboro…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:39

Movie night comes to the Sylva library

The Jackson County Public Library in Sylva will have a movie night at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 2. The library will show “It Happened One Night,” a 1934 Frank Capra classic starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert. Colbert plays a…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:38

The Poetry Revival to come to WCU

The Arts and Cultural Events Series at Western Carolina University will host The Poetry Revival, a spoken-word theater experience, at 7:30 p.m., Jan. 25, in the Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center on the WCU campus. The Poetry Revival includes…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:38

Rathskellar to offer wine tasting

Rathskeller Coffee Haus & Pub will host a Select Red Wine Tasting at 6 p.m. on Feb. 8. Jeremy Sims from Mutual Distributing will run the event, which is free of charge. However, pre-registration is required as seating is limited.…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:37

HART presents five plays in one night

The Haywood Arts Regional Theater will feature five short plays by Sylva playwright Gary Carden on Jan. 27 thru 29. The Friday and Saturday shows begin at 7:30 p.m., and the Sunday performance starts at 3 p.m. The plays include:…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:36

Photography workshops to be offered at WCU

Western Carolina University’s Office of Continuing Education will be offering workshops on digital camera basics and processing digital images in the coming weeks. The first workshop, “Mastering Your Digital Camera,” is designed for the novice digital photographer and will be…
Local crafter James Stewart-Payne will offer a free one-hour paper collage class for adults at 7 p.m. on Feb. 7 at the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva. Class participants will create their own birds, using simple papers collected from home,…
The Jackson County Public Library in Sylva will host a daytime music program on the first Friday of every month featuring the “The Lady and the Old Timers Band.” The February performance will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:35

Share the Warmth concert is Feb. 12

Haywood Community College and Champion Credit Union are once again joining forces to help people in Haywood County with heating assistance. Hominy Valley Boys and several other local groups will host a Share the Warmth benefit concert from 2 to…
Wednesday, 25 January 2012 21:34

SCC to offer personal enrichment classes

Southwestern Community College will offer four arts classes beginning Feb. 4. • “Instant piano for hopelessly busy people” is open to anyone. The class will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Feb. 4 on the Jackson campus. The $75…
Cherokee has bears; another town has painted pigs. Harold Sims, who runs the Catman2 shelter, wants cats. Sims has found life-size, unpainted cat statues and is looking for people to sponsor a cat. The cost per cat depends on how…
The Haywood County Public Library will hold its second annual Lego Extravaganza Contest on Jan. 28 at the Haywood County Cooperative Extension Office. Registration is free and open to children ages 5-17, with registration forms available at all library branches.…
It took just moments for this roomful of 60 people with their varying musical backgrounds and abilities to unite in song. But they did just that thanks to the guidance of shape-note teacher Anne Lough of Haywood County, who walked…
A concept among biologists is that of “keystone species:” plants or animals with a pervasive influence on community composition and inter-reactions. In the eastern United States — especially here in the southern highlands — the beech tree is such an…
Wednesday, 18 January 2012 14:57

Get all the dirt on growing grapes

A viticulture conference focused on how to grow grapes in a sustainable manner in Western North Carolina will be held all-day Wednesday, Feb. 22, at Warren Wilson College. The conference is being put on in conjunction with Sustainable Appalachian Viticulture…
Wet those lines, anglers, and you could get your hooks into $10,000 in prize money during Shiver in the River Feb. 3-5. The tournament will take place on a 2.2-mile stretch of trophy, catch-and-release stream on the Cherokee Indian Reservation.…
“Books and Boots,” a two-day event celebrating the beauty and bounty of the natural world will be held at the N.C. Arboretum in Asheville on Saturday and Sunday, February 18 and 19. There will be family programs focusing on indoor…
Wednesday, 18 January 2012 14:55

Franklin now has AT “ambassador”

Mary Bennett has been chosen to serve as the volunteer ambassador for the designated Appalachian Trail Community of Franklin. Bennett will serve as a community liaison to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the local volunteer hiking club that maintains in…
Wednesday, 18 January 2012 14:55

Camp in Maggie Valley helps troubled youth

A grant from Healthy Haywood has helped launch an Outdoor Mission Camp for court-involved kids. Positive Community Connections is designed to help keep kids off the streets and out of the courtrooms. The directors are Ruffin and Jamie Shackelford, who…