Bringing a little warmth to the impending fall weather, the Haywood Regional Arts Theatre in Waynesville presents “The Light In The Piazza” this month.

Taking place in Florence, Italy (circa 1953), the story unfolds as a Winston-Salem mother and daughter visit the picturesque country. From the beginning, there seems to be something emotionally off with the daughter (Clara), which is only magnified by the obsessively nurturing and protective mother (Margaret). 

art frIt may look like a grassy field to some, but to Steven Lloyd, it’s a window of opportunity.

Lloyd, executive director of the Haywood Arts Regional Theatre in Waynesville, is currently in the midst of a fundraising campaign to bring a second major theater stage to the beloved local theatrical institution. 

More than a year after winning $5,000 in the Haywood County Chamber of Commerce’s annual Business Start-up Competition, Aermor, an engineering and technical services business in Canton, is still growing.

After sweeping the competition, owner Penny Morgan announced some lofty goals — to become a 100-person, $26 million outfit within five years. With about a year and a half under her belt since his announcement, Morgan still thinks that is feasible.

fr ghosttownAs Maggie Valley business owners and leaders look toward the town’s future, it is unclear how large a role town leaders realistically expect the amusement park Ghost Town in the Sky to play.

Maggie cheered when Ghost Town in the Sky reopened this summer, but with only a small portion of the rides and attractions up and running, the real potential of the amusement park to lure hordes of tourists back to the struggling town hasn’t been realized overnight.

After rescuing the shuttered park from foreclosure earlier this year, Ghost Town’s new owner Alaska Presley has been slowly whittling away at a laundry list of projects she hopes to complete before it closes down for the winter and reopens next spring.

fr oldtownWhen Old Town Bank opened in 2007, its founders already had plans for building a dream headquarters, but the grand plans had to be put on hold until the locally owned bank got on its feet and the recession ended.

When Super Walmart opened in Waynesville in 2008, it was viewed as just the beginning of a business boom that would reverse a long, steady downward spiral of South Main Street. But, the economy had other plans. The hoped-for land rush of new stores and development along South Main stalled out before it ever got started.

fr medwestoutThe hospitals in Jackson and Swain counties formally declared last week that they want out of the partnership forged nearly three years ago with Haywood’s hospital — however, it’s not at all clear whether the leaders of Haywood Regional Medical Center will agree to let them leave.

coverIt’s noon on a Wednesday and Scott Peterson already has beer on the mind.

art frWhat could’ve been a lifelong haunting moment for most turned out to be an epiphany for Josh Merrell.

“I farted in front of my fourth-grade class. The teacher asked who did it and instead of sheepishly hiding at my desk, I raised my hand,” he said. “The room erupted with laughter; I even made a few friends. That’s when I got a taste for comedy, although I took the fart bit out of my routine just recently.”

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