WNC Travel Guide

Shooting for dreams

art frIn a crowded, frenzied gymnasium, Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland was just trying to not embarrass himself.

“I haven’t touched a basketball in years,” he chuckled. “I’m trying to not look as dumb as possible.”

fr gazeboBy Jake Flannick • SMN Correspondent

A design for a new gazebo on the town square in downtown Franklin has been sent back to the drawing board.

Jake Flannick • SMN Correspondent

He campaigned on the promise of making Franklin fertile ground for new ideas and encouraging more openness and transparency in government. 

art frOn a recent crisp early winter evening, hundreds of folks from around Western North Carolina and beyond converged onto the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin.

“This year, 2013, was a great year for us,” said Paul Garner, manager of the SMCPA. “We’re always going to strive to do better, always step it up, always wanting to treat artists better, always wanting to treat our patrons better. We have a great year planned for 2014.”

fr rathskellerBy Jake Flannick • SMN Correspondent

The legendary Rathskeller Coffee Haus and Pub, an institution and social mainstay in downtown Franklin, saw a generational changing of the guard this year after 15 years in the hands of its original founder and owner.

fr hospicehouseJake Flannick • SMN Correspondent

A nearly decade-long dream to build an inpatient hospice house for the terminally ill and their families in Franklin is closer to becoming a reality.

Despite a crowded field in the Franklin election — a dozen candidates in all — a handful of victors emerged as clear frontrunners ahead of the pack.

Most of the winning candidates for aldermen and mayor reflect a public desire for change.

Ninety seconds. 

It’s shorter than the average YouTube video and less time (theoretically) than it takes to brush your teeth, but if you can squeeze enough charm and tenacity and business acumen into that space, you may just be on the receiving end of $1,000.  

art frOctober, of course, is the month for haunting, when lawns become littered with skeletons and witches fly in through branches of trees shedding their leaves. Store shelves are stocked with masks and makeup and an array of costumes, all designed to terrify. But on “Where Shadows Walk,” Franklin’s haunted history tour, you won’t find any of that. No masked hatchet men will jump from behind gravestones; black-eyed zombie undertakers will not be your guides, because, said Gregg Clark, the tour’s owner and guide, you won’t need them. The stories themselves elicit enough scare power on their own. 

Franklin’s mayoral candidates are offering voters distinctly different visions of leadership as they square off for the town’s top political position.

Sissy Pattillo, who is completing her second term as a town alderman, used the word “collaboration” at least four times while answering questions during a recent forum sponsored by the Macon County League of Women Voters.

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