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Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:23

A night of music with a purpose

By Chris Cooper My participation in the Play For Peace project has been, honestly, primarily for purely selfish reasons. The opportunity to play music live is one I’ll rarely pass up, especially when the lineup includes an abundance of fine…
By Dr. Allan Zacher, M.D. Flu season is here. You and your family and friends have not gotten it yet, but if you look at Google Flu Trends (http://www.google.org/flutrends/) you will see that we are on the early part of…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 14:21

Vintage King

Just After Sunset by Stephen King. Scribner and Sons, 2008. 367 pages. Unlike the majority of his peers, Stephen King keeps expanding his territory. Certainly, he could have put down roots in any of a dozen horror genres ranging from…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:20

The Naturalist's Corner

Bees do it and die Honeybees are not native to the States. But these prolific pollinators arrived with the earliest settlers. With the changing agricultural landscape, i.e., thousands of acres of monoculture crops and the decimation of native pollinators through…
While sales of new vehicles have plummeted, the service side of the automotive industry is holding steady as people opt to keep their old cars and trucks running. “So far, it’s extremely busy,” said Earl Hannon, service department director at…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:11

Here come the seed catalogs

By Jim Janke Editor’s note: This is a regular feature on gardening by the Haywood County master gardeners. Look for it every other week.   Does cold weather cause gardening catalogs to stuff my mailbox? Or does the arrival of…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:38

Prime time pushes trend in crime forensics

Waynesville defense attorney Don Patten has noticed an interesting trend among jurors in recent years. They are hungry for hard and fast evidence like hair samples, DNA, blood traces and firearm analysis — tidbits most likely picked up from TV…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:37

Unsung guitar hero’s latest keeps it lively

By Chris Cooper It’s in the phrasing; the careful sculpting of each and every note. It’s something about the intent, the message conveyed with each musical statement. The way Jeff Beck grabs a guitar string and twists, bends, swoops and…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:36

Twin path productions: Two friends, one dream

By Christi Marsico • Staff Writer Wearing white sneakers with a buzz haircut, Tighe Wachacha enters the Burger King in Waynesville followed by his cardigan-clad cohort Matthew Yates. Wachacha, 28, is married with one child and Yates, 27, is engaged.…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:34

The Naturalist's Corner: Bad moon ‘risin

When we headed for the car after a glorious Thanksgiving dinner, the skies above Jonathan Creek were dark and clear, and the blue stars seemed close enough to touch. I could see Orion and the Pleiades and a couple of…
The idea of using the region’s readily accessible natural resources in daily life is nothing new in the mountains, a place where people have traditionally turned plants and animals into everything from medicine to baskets to clothes. Today, officials are…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:33

Commissioners select Haywood’s top leader

Commissioner Kirk Kirkpatrick took the helm as the new chairman of the Haywood County Board of Commissioners this week. Every two years following a commissioner election, the five members appoint a chairman from among their ranks. The chairman conducts meetings,…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:32

Haywood proud winner of 22 acres, but what now?

After a 15-month legal battle, Haywood County can finally claim ownership free and clear over a 22-acre tract in the Jonathan Creek area that the county wants to make a recreation park. The county paid $1.1 million for the parcel…
Construction of a new center for seniors in Swain County has ground to a halt because the project has run out of money. The 6,000-square-foot facility, which sits atop a hill next to the new Swain County jail, will remain…
A lawyer for Duke Energy told the Jackson County commissioners on Monday that if the county continues to hold up permits necessary for removal of the Dillsboro dam that “further legal action” will be taken. Duke wants to tear down…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:27

New Folkmoot director takes helm

The new executive director of Folkmoot USA, Haywood County’s famed international dance festival, is perfectly poised to help the event’s multinational participants adjust to their unfamiliar surroundings — after all, she’s a newcomer here herself. Karen Babcock, 47, was recently…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:23

My birding through the warbler

It wasn’t until the late 1970s that my wife, Elizabeth, and I first started birding in a systematic fashion. That is, we began learning to distinguish species by their calls and songs as well as by their distinctive markings. For…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:22

A reminder to keep the public in mind

“’Official meeting’ means a meeting, assembly, or gathering together at any time or place ... of a majority of the members of a public body for the purpose of conducting hearings, participating in deliberations, or voting upon or otherwise transacting…
The Prince of Frogtown by Rick Bragg. Alfred A. Knopf, 2008. 272 pages. Biography affords the reader a rare chance to walk in another’s shoes, to explore unknown places ranging from the Amazon rainforest to the great uncharted territories of…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:19

Schools struggle with state budget recall

By Josh Mitchell & Julia Merchant • Staff Writers The downturn in the economy is forcing schools to send back some of their state money. The state has asked local school systems to send back $39 per student, or 0.75…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:18

Choices in home energy systems

By Avram Friedman • Executive Director, Canary Coalition Getting “off the grid” is more and more appealing to many of us as the cost of energy goes up and our awareness about the health and environmental impacts of coal and…
Wednesday, 03 December 2008 13:18

Snow days are like heaven for 12-year-olds

You are 12 years old and it’s December and a school day. The days are shorter now, meaning it is still dark when the alarm clock blasts you out of your dreams like a cannonball fired at dawn in a…
When a hunter discovered human skeletal remains in the woods in Macon County last winter, investigators didn’t know who the dead person was, how long he’d been there or if foul play was involved. It was a classic situation for…
By Zack Dean • Smoky Mtn. High School I had to work late on Nov. 4, so upon coming home that night I didn’t know what to expect. I walked into the living room to find a group of my…
For two weeks every summer, the Folkmoot Center is a popping nightspot. Well after midnight, little crowds cluster around the exit doors, tiny clouds of smoke rising around them. Inside, in what was once the Hazelwood Elementary School Cafeteria, a…
Seventy kilos is a lot of weight to hold on your head. It’s about 150 pounds. That’s like carrying a welterweight boxer balanced atop your skull. Or a gargantuan African drum. It’s no mean feat, but Patrick Muvunyi, Bienvenu Katungeko…
(Editor’s note: This column first appeared in The Smoky Mountain News in July 2005.) Are you by chance looking for a high-elevation day-hike that embodies quite a bit of the region’s human history? If so, try the moderate to steep…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:49

Extreme dog action comes to Cherokee

Dogs performing aerial tricks and other extreme stunts will come to Cherokee for the Carolina Dock Dogs exhibition Aug. 5 through 7. There is also an open division for anyone 7 years or older and any dog 6 months or…
Kids ages 3 to 11 will swarm the river bank at Oconaluftee Island Park in Cherokee for the 10th annual Talking Trees Children’s Trout Derby on August 6. Fishing poles and gear are provided, as well as instruction from experienced…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:48

Learn angling tips from the pros

Owners of the region’s largest fly shops and fishing outfitters will share insight on local waters at the next meeting of the Plateau Fly Fishing Club, held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Cashiers library. Joe Street and…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:44

Swain 4-H’ers learn outdoor basics

Swain’s newest 4-H Club, the Outdoor Adventurers, hiked Clingmans Dome to the observation tower and participated in two Junior Ranger Programs in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Students learned how to pack for a day hike, hiking basics, and…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:40

Scenic byway lands to get protection

North Carolina’s land trusts, including the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee and Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy, have for a second time received federal funds to conserve land and protect views from 20 of the state’s scenic byways, including the…
Learn to put a little hop in your brew on a tour of Hop’n Blueberry Farm and Pisgah Brewing Company. The dual hop tour takes place Saturday, Aug. 6. Tickets are $8 per person and include two beer samples.  Pisgah…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:39

Heritage celebration held at Waterrock Knob

Appalachian crafters, old-timey demonstrations, Cherokee culture and mountain music will be celebrated during a special event at the Waterrock Knob Visitor Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 6. “Blue Ridge Parkway:…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:38

Hunting safety courses planned at HCC

Learn how to be safe in the woods while hunting through a series of Hunter Safety courses at Haywood Community College. Haywood Community College’s Natural Resources Division and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission will offer Hunter Safety courses Aug. 15…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:37

Campers get lessons in water quality

Young campers from the Pigeon Community Multicultural Development Center in Waynesville were given a hands-on lesson about water quality in rivers at the Oconaluftee Islands Park in Cherokee. Haywood Waterways Association partnered with the Watershed Association of the Tuckasegee River…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:36

Map leads the way to Haywood farm spots

The new 2011 edition of the Haywood County farm map and brochure has been released. The new publication lists more than 40 locations to buy locally grown plants, produce, Christmas trees, and more. The featured sites include farm stands, plant…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:36

Tour the trees of downtown Sylva

An opportunity to learn about the trees in downtown Sylva and surrounding areas takes place Thursday, Aug. 11, with a walking tour of the town’s “Tree Walk.” Peggy Hurt, member and past president of the Sylva Garden Club, will lead…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:35

Feeling dumb – go take a hike

A recently published study in Proceedings, an online medical journal of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that regular aerobic exercise like walking or hiking can improve the brain’s memory function and perhaps lessen the risk of dementia. As humans…
That the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest in Graham County isn’t what it once was is true — the large hemlocks are dying or dead, victim of the hemlock wooly adelgid, a tiny insect that is changing the landscape of Western…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:31

Local author speaks on Haywood history

Local author Louise K. Nelson will be at Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 30. Nelson has written several books, mainly on Haywood County’s early history. Nelson was born in Haywood County 85…
Danielle Ganek’s The Summer We Read Gatsby (ISBN 978-0-670-02178-9, $28.95) tells the story of two half-sisters, Cassie, a translator for a Swiss lifestyle magazine, and Peck, an often-unemployed actress who loves vintage clothing, gossip, and parties. When their cherished Aunt…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:26

Local Confederate history comes alive

Historians Reed Henson and David and Debbie Patterson will hearken back to the Confederacy at 7 p.m. on July 28 at the Macon County Library with their collection of arms, clothing, flags and equipment that would have been used at…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:25

‘Liars Bench’ returns to WCU

Western Carolina University’s Mountain Heritage Center will host and sponsor a free performance of “The Liars Bench” Southern Appalachian variety show at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 4. “The Liars Bench” was founded by Sylva writer and storyteller Gary Carden in…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:24

Library wraps up summer reading

The Marianna Black Library in Bryson City has been celebrating “One World, Many Stories” during its annual summer reading program all summer long.  Community children have had a chance to bring their own hand-crafted passports to Australia, Egypt, England, China,…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:24

Lakeside dinner to benefit The Bascom

Dine at Lakeside Restaurant on Wednesday, July 27, and help The Bascom Visual Arts Center. Lakeside will donate 15 percent of the gross sales from the evening’s supporters to the art center. When making your reservation, be sure to mention…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:24

Learn to create abstract art

Local artist Silvia Cabrera Williams will lead a teaching session on from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 6, at Leapin’ Frog Gallery in Waynesville’s Historic Frog Level. Some basic instruction about paints, values, shapes and color placement…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:20

Exhibit celebrates downtown Waynesville

The Haywood County Arts Council will host an exhibition titled, “Main Street Moments in Time,” celebrating 25 years of the Downtown Waynesville Association and featuring photographs from the DWA’s archives, the Historical Society’s SnapShot project, and photographs of the downtown…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:19

JAM comes to Jackson County

In March, a group of interested local leaders met to discuss the formation of an affiliate program of the regional the Junior Appalachian Musicians Program. The meeting set the wheels in motion for the implementation of an after-school program for…
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 14:19

Evening of acoustic music in Bryson City

As part of a Summer Music Series, the Marianna Black Library in Bryson City will host acoustic country musicians Ron and Julia Thompson at 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 28. The program will be presented on the front porch of…