As Caroline Kernahan talked about why she wanted to be a foster parent, her 4-year-old daughter Claire climbed into her lap and asked when her new brother or sister would be coming to stay with them.
Donna Lupton, director of social work in Haywood County, admits that fostering a child or teen isn’t for everyone.
In a perfect world, every child would have a loving family and a safe home to return to at the end of the day, but it’s not a perfect world. The reality is that thousands of children are removed from their homes each year in North Carolina.
Foster care agencies continue to see the number of foster care cases increase and the opportunities to reunify those children with their biological parents decrease. It’s a trend many Western North Carolina counties are experiencing.
It was another banner year for Western North Carolina bluegrass acts at the International Bluegrass Music Association awards in Raleigh last Thursday evening.
Despite torrential downpours, and the possible threat of Hurricane Joaquin making landfall, the industry showcase once again brought together musicians, promoters and bluegrass fans alike for a week of memorable moments, onstage and off.
Variety is the spice of life. Within the realm of music, those spices can range from the hot heat of New Orleans funk and the Chicago blues to the sweet taste of California sunshine soul and Nashville front porch singer-songwriters.
And yet, where does the largest spice rack of sound reside? Well, in Southern Appalachia of course. Right in our own backyard you have the crossroads — literally and figuratively — of bluegrass, country, rock-n-roll, jazz, blues and folk tones. This melting pot of melodies flows down these steep mountains, from the deep hollers, backwoods coves, dark basements, old garages and rickety barns of Western North Carolina.
Less money and stiffer competition for grants means that Western North Carolina needs to have a solid plan in place to show the need in the region and stay competitive.
One day they were operating out of the community center building in Sylva and the next they were moving into a singlewide trailer in Bryson City. Some years federal grant money rolled in hand over fist, and other years they fought tooth and nail for highly competitive grants for their communities. They’ve seen years of unchecked growth and years of economic stagnation.
If Garrett Fisher had his way, he’d live on the side of a mountain with a glacier as his next-door neighbor.
Some people might consider his Wyoming home, located at 5,633 feet above sea level, to be close enough, but Fisher craves more elevation than that. So, he satisfies his thirst for altitude with aviation.
Boyd Mountain Tree Farm
143 Boyd Farm Road • Waynesville. 828.926.8888 or 828.506.3513.
Dutch Cove Christmas Tree Farm
280 Setzer Drive • Canton. 828.648.9133.
Nesbitt Christmas Tree Farm
333 Sunset Ridge • Clyde. 828.456.9914
Adrian Fowler Tree Farm
2478 Cedar Creek Road • Cashiers. 828.399.0673.
Ammons Brothers Nursery
2231 Wolf Mountain Road. Tuckasegee. 828.293.5398.
Chris Burrell Christmas Trees
Tuckasegee. 828.743.2882 or 828.586.8782.
D’s Trees Farm
Cane Creek Road • Cullowhee. 828.293.3308.
Flat Creek Tree Farm
1749 Flat Creek Valley Road. Lake Toxaway. 828.966.4300 or 828.577.2297.
Grandy Mountain Farm
841 Breedlove Road • Cashiers. 828.508.8183 or 828.743.1737.
303 Fowler Road • Glenville. 828.226.9327.
Hutch’s Mountain Trees, LLC
455 Lakeside Circle • Glenville. 828.736.1405.
6701 Charlies Creek Road. Tuckaseegee. 985.674.1445.
Lazy Acres Farm
1081 Breedlove Road • Glenville. 828.507.5072.
Moss Tree Farm
1822 Norton Road • Cashiers. 828.226.2397 or 828.743.2215. 828.226.2340 or 828.743.6398.
Tuckaseegee. 828.506.3534 or 828.293.5057.
Pressley Tree Farm
770 Shirley Pressley Road • Glenville. 828.399.1505 or 828.743.2275.
4735 Charlies Creek Road. Tuckaseegee. 828.506.2231 or 828.293.1141.
4484 Pine Creek Road • Cullowhee. 800.511.6404 or 828.743.5329.
Stewart’s Tree Farm
244 Shook Cove Road. Tuckseegee. 828.293.5329 or 828.226.4174.
Tom Sawyer Tree Farm
240 Chimney Pond Road • Glenville. 828.508.2301 or 828.743.5456.
971 Lloyd Hooper Road. Cullowhee. 828.508.9612 or 828.743.3899.
Wind Dog Farm
360 Comanche Road • Cullowhee. 828.743.7938.
Windy Gap Tree Farm
385 Fowler Road • Glenville. 828.507.8863 or 828.586.0637.
Woodard Tree Farm
Pumpkin Town Road. 828.586.8577.
2820 Dillard Road • Highlands. 828.526.0229.
U.S. 19 • Whittier • 828.488.2376.
Ted Craig Tree Farm
160 Frasier Fir Drive • Bryson City. 828.488.3954
Evergreen Acres Nursery
N.C. 28 (near Stecoah Barber Shop). Robbinsville • 828.479.8014.
“Fir” Heaven’s Sake
220 Nelson Road • Topton. 828.321.5339.
Shields Tree Farm
U.S. 64 West (past Triple B Restaurant). Murphy • 828.644.5254.
Mount Hardy Christmas Tree
34 Rocky Hill Branch Road. Brevard. 828.577.2678 or 828.884.8681.
It’s 6:30 in the morning when 24 hours of travel ends with the plane’s landing in Bolivia, but even through the grogginess it’s not hard to see that we’ve arrived somewhere far, far away from Miami. Snow-crested mountains rise over the outstretched plateau. Drivers crowd the security exit, shouting “Taxi?! Taxi?!” At 13,323 feet above sea level, the air is thin and dry, with any activity more strenuous than a walk on flat ground leaving you gasping for breath.
But the trek wasn’t over. From La Paz we were headed to a children’s home in Tacachia, a town so tiny it doesn’t even show up on Google Maps. Getting there would involve a day of altitude adjustment in La Paz, three hours in a Jeep traversing 15 miles of steep and skinny dirt roads and reconciliation with the fact that the village’s lack of running water would mean outhouses and no showers for the next four days.